T: There you go! Commanders don’t let anyone fill your head with malarkey that the Wasteland has no value! I expect that going to California probably ranks right up there with the very best of your memories from Total Domination, but how about some of the best in-game memories that you’ve got to share with us? What’s your best memory? And what’s your biggest achievement?
AH: This is pretty easy for me to discuss. Let’s begin by setting the mood. As you know, every Clan has an arch enemy. In our case, Night Bastards is our arch enemy. They are led by Alexey Etmanov. The mere mention of the names of some of the Night Bastards Clan is enough to make my blood boil. You cannot begin to imagine the sheer frustration, anxiety and headaches that they have caused me and my Clan. I cannot even put it into words. Having said that, I do have a tremendous deal of respect for them. Why do I say this? Because they have lots of passion for the game and everything about it. True, we’ve waged war against them several times – all unsuccessfully. We have been unable to completely invade the top echelons of their military ranks. During one of the attempts, we spent several weeks fortifying our positions, strengthening our troops and preparing for battle. Thanks largely to Brett Cummins, Joshua Lakes and Eric McKinney – our tactical geniuses – we managed to plot out all their land, complete with timers letting us know when to land on our target – Alexey Etmanov. This is where it begins to get interesting: we spammed attacks against him for three days. Then, CJ and I had to send troops to Ed Ward. We were hoping to divert Alexey’s Clan defences from his base. Within 30 minutes, the bulk of our Clan arrived as scheduled. It took many troops, but we were finally able to penetrate his defences. This was the first time his base was invaded. It proved to be a flash in the pan but it was altogether satisfying. For Alexey, I have nothing but praise. My friend, your passion qualifies you as a worthy and dangerous adversary; I would not have it any other way.
T: That’s quite something! Yes, we all recall chatter about that epic battle on the public airwaves. We weren’t quite sure what was fact and what was fiction. It is really good to hear about it first-hand. Here at STRATCOM we’ve got a selection of quotes on the COMCEN walls, right beneath the insignia. You remember seeing them when you were brought in? One such quote is as follows: “Whoever will come to us with a sword, from a sword will perish!” What are your thoughts on this? Do you agree with it?
AH: Absolutely! I agree with that 100%. Have you ever heard the expression – ‘You catch more bees with honey than with vinegar? I believe that applies in war as well. When you’re offering something of benefit to them, people are predisposed to accept it than if you threaten war. Diplomacy is an essential skill. It saves us from undue stress, heartache and loss – especially if war isn’t necessary. But, there is a time for talk and a time for action and I will not shy away from the use of force. The difference is: we pick our battles carefully. By the same token, anyone who dares to test our resolve with a sword, best select their sharpest and deadliest weapon because they will find us up to the challenge.
T: When it comes to battles, what human qualities do you feel are most important when you’re trying to win?
AH: I’ve always been a believer that passion and dedication are the most essential qualities that help you to emerge victorious in anything in life. This doesn’t only apply to TD. And it doesn’t apply to just a single battle either. When I talk about passion for the game, I’m talking about setting your alarm for 3 AM, so that you can go raiding; or when you excuse yourself from the table with guests so that you can go and check your e-mail. This dedication is precisely what makes you a better commander. It allows you to build an army and to be feared; to build thousands of troops and save them for a single, calculated attack. This is precisely what keeps you grinding away at XP, piling all your resources into costly upgrades and learning everything there is to know about military strategy. This is what sets you apart from the competition. Once you have these qualities, you need to nurture them and foster them. It means that the game is the first thing on your mind when you awaken and the last thing on your mind when you go to bed. I call these qualities dedication and passion – others may call it obsession and addiction.
T: Commander, I applaud you! That’s what keeps you at the top end of TD. Nobody gets anywhere without this hunger for success. Passion, hard work and dedication – that’s what it’s all about. Now it’s time for the final question: What advice would you like to share with new Commanders to the Wasteland?
AH: Thank you General! The best advice I can give anyone who’s starting to play the game is the following: Seek out a Clan that you gel with. Some people are keen to just join the game, gather their resources, and perform upgrades but never to raid or participate with other players. That’s all good and well, but it doesn’t make the game very fun or interactive. That’s my opinion of course.
For me, the most important aspect of the game is the interaction. I’ve managed to make lots of new friends at every opportunity. When you have a good Clan at your back, you’re golden. You’re able to coordinate raids, to assist one another with resources and to form alliances that are beneficial to you. Success shared with friends is true success.
Right now I can see the gentleman behind the mic pointing at his watch and looking angrily towards me. I’d like to say thanks and an especially big thank you to Kelly Lane – my Clan leader and mentor. I appreciate all of the opportunities I’ve been afforded and I would also like to say a big thank you to all of my friends and associates. To Plarium – thanks for creating a super game – it’s appreciated!
T: Super! That’s advice that you can bank on. We can see precisely where your priorities are. When you see that Mutagen piling up, it’s difficult to see beyond all those resources. The success of your army is one thing; but there are many other things that are important in life. Commander, stay sharp – I’ll be seeing you in the Wasteland.
To everyone else – we hope you enjoyed our chat. Be sure to tune in next time for more in-depth briefings of Tornado’s Talks. Over and out- all and all on Plarium’s blog!