The latest rumors on the server have it that after intentionally training 2 guilds in PoF in full view of a GM, said GM (Alkiron) did a server-wide announcement looking for any BotS guild officer, after which all BotS members suddenly lost their guild affiliation.

BotS members posting to the same thread claim that Alkiron had a grudge against the guild, the so-called “training” of the other guilds was accidental and done by someone not affiliated with BotS, no one knew what they were talking about, and STFU.

As always, the real story is a tad more complex.

The Rathe is one of the more crowded servers in EQ. As a result, early on in its history a “reservation system” was laid out, where guilds could “lay claim” exclusively to a given plane or dragon. Many thought this was necessary, since with 2 or more guilds in a given high-level killzone, lag and cross-pulling pullers inevitably lead to many corpses.

BotS was one of the guilds who not only were the cornerstone of the “reservation system”, but who earlier who decided to begin a reservation system not only for planes, but for, well, pretty much anything with phat l3wt. As noted in the somewhat controversial post that laid out this new “Epic Mob Reservation System”, if this system were not adhered to, BotS and other guilds would “go FFA in the planes”, or ignore the reservation system. As another guild in Fear last night reported, BotS did in fact decide to “go FFA”. (BotS for their part claim that the other guilds requested their assistance.)

Thanks in large part to the confusion caused by BotS’s forced entry into Fear, lots of people died, and immediately petitioned the oncall GM that BotS was training them to get Fear for themselves. For WHATEVER REASON, the GM found this believable and disbanded the guild (he was quoted by a BotS member as saying that he heard the arguments of those who supported BotS’ position and chose to ignore them).

For their part, BotS is supposedly re-forming under a new name (“Blades of Destiny”).

So what caused all this? Easiest way to describe it: too many mice, not enough cheese. BotS that night were simply looking to harvest “god loot” (when “negotiating” with the other guilds present they offered them all loot save premium caster loot and whatever the gods dropped). Like any other multiplayer game, EQ is all about resource management. And at the highest levels, there simply aren’t enough resources to go around. As an attempt to mandate scarcity of the best “phat lewt”, Verant simply made them harder to obtain (part of why all this happened over the past 2 days is that the recent patches caused the servers to reset, and all the “rare mobs” such as Cazic Thule and Dracholiche to spawn).

Unfortunately, there isn’t a high level player alive who will settle for second best in the interest of play balance or maintaining an economy of scarcity. If a player invests the mind-shattering amount of time necessary to become “planes-capable”, they will get everything that they need. And fuck anyone in their way.

Which results in attitudes reflected by this observer on Whineplay:

BoTS– it is too late. Too many people hate you now for the things you have done in the past. You are going to be taken down now one way or the other, whether you are innocent or not.

So what should we take away from this? Game design decisions often have unintended consequences. In Everquest, Player vs. Player happens – whether Verant wants it to or not.