(note from Eternity..omg he wrote a novel!!)

Alias: Fordus, FordusFiresoul
Previous Aliases: Grinch, Prey
Started ARC: june of 2000
joined TBWA: a little before the 2007 APL
Past Clans: too many! but the major ones were XiN, mOd, CaDF, 2Cool, CB, SN, TW, =E=, CEO
note about past clans: I used to be somewhat of a clanhopper…but I can say with confidence that TBWA finally fulfilled all that I was looking for in terms of attitude, leadership, competitiveness, and friendship/loyalty.

Players I’ve learned from: way too many to name..but I want to try to give credit where it’s due:
Kamakozma – the first player to really teach me about the game back when I was a huge newb. He got a lot of info that was trickled down from players like Graves, ElDazo, and other 2Coolers which he incorporated in showing me (and owning me in duels over and over!)

Xeromos – I’ll never forget when I was in mOd and played against an SN line of Astrok, AD, Xeromos, and I think Nanaman. I had a pretty good team too, so I thought we’d lose but not that badly, but we got utterly destroyed – felt like it was 8 of them. All of them had such amazing rape and crossfire, but I noticed it especially with Xero – how he would be constantly going out of his way to flank and crossfire. This is what first opened my eyes to what good ARC was all about – raping. (btw..a similar event occured with Godshand when I first played in a TBWA game against Nano, GH, Aco, and Wiz)

Techman/Parrotman – It was from playing against these guys and getting owned by them all the time that I realized the power and deadliness of good use of specials and unloads.
Mage – what can I say, the guy revolutionized fragging on ARC from the time he started smurfing as High_Bounty. I remember being fascinated with what he could do, and harrassed him enough to where he answered all my questions to help me understand what exactly it takes to shoot and dodge at such an elite level.

Astrok – because of his iconic status and accomplishments within the community, I remember being fascinated with him too and would grill him trying to see how his brain worked. I didn’t know it back then (I hadn’t yet gotten good at poker) but what he taught me in one conversation I had with him was essentially the application of Expected Value to ARC. I’ll never forget how he put it, I’m paraphrasing slightly but it was: “every decision I make is predicated on how I think it will ultimately affect the chance to capture the enemy’s flag and the security of my own team’s flag.” This is what eventually led me to the epiphany of ARC strategy being “common sense” that stems from experience – you eventually recognize what choices lead to what scenarios and which scenarios are likely or unlikely to have your team end up with 0, 1, or both flags.

Toughest Opponents: Mage, Toughshot, Nano, ElAsesino, Parrotman, Solo, Ominous
Favorite Teammates: same as above 🙂
Up and Coming Players: Shrink, Bone, Meek

random spark views and facts:
what holds most players back – lack of determination to improve
what holds a lot of good players back – lack of motivation to maintain a high level of play
what holds the game back – lack of competition
what makes the best games – 4v4 games where every player is a strong player
what makes the worst games – one team has all strong players and the other team is stuck with a really weak link
advice to newbies – watch what successful players do and try to emulate it

the evolution from newbie to complete player in 200 words or less:
learn how to shoot spreads, learn how to dodge spreads, learn how to shoot rapid singles, learn how to dodge at close range, learn how to use missiles/bursts, learn how to use suppression lasers against people on corners, learn how to pop out from behind walls, learn how to use bombs bouncies and combos, learn how to be aggressive in raping, learn how to flank/create rapes, learn how to avoid rapes, learn how to decide whether to stay at base or leave, learn how to decide when to rush 2v1 high or low, learn where to go, learn how to cover a flagger, learn when the situation requires patient passive play and staying alive, learn when to die on purpose if you’re weak or smoked, learn when situations require a “kill or die” mentality, learn how to crossfire effectively with teammates, learn how to contain enemies with lasers, learn how to give your teammates cover fire, learn how to be aggressive on offense, learn how to be aggressive when your enemy takes his focus off you and onto your teammate.

most memorable arc experience – honestly it was in the first couple months my brother and I started the game, as newbs, playing in the 8v8 canvsusa with the AGENTS and then Fortress with the old fortress crowd like JJWalker and such. ARC was just so so simple and fun as a newb.

favorite arc/spark game of all time – was a public GO on WON or sierra…me, parrotman, astrok, toshi vs. mage, elasesino, tempest, and deadeye. Just a random night where it so happened that lots of good players joined a public GO. We played for a long time and their team had the superior fragging, but I think we had the superior teamwork and also the advantage of red color so it was a close game. I think we ended up losing 2-1 over several hours. There were also substitutions as people left and came in (pretty sure toshi and deadeye left at some point, but two other really good players came in to replace em). It was a really high level ARC and a really fun competitive game. What makes this game so memorable to me, other than being full of great players at the time, is I was on a really shitty computer having FPS spike problems, but the game was so good I slugged it out and managed to adjust my style and still somehow do well.

“rape him!”
“stay in front!”
“kill base”
“die __” (if __ is smoked and doesn’t realize the situation calls for it)

My first real clan was XiN. We made some noise, beating some good “Vet” clans in clanwars a few times. I badly wanted to improve, and didn’t feel that XiN did so I left. I eventually joined up mOd with my brother (ominous) where we got our first experience playing in APL. A big turning point in my arc career was when we played 2cool that season, when the infamous “wonbie” lineup (all players who started arc on WON) of myself, omin, teck, and silencer, beat a 2Cool lineup that had such famed greats as Astrok and Access Denied (it did include Kamakozma, another one of the best wonbies, but the 4th was another good vet…I think elDAZo). mOd did well that APL with only a couple losses in the regular season. I think I ended up leading the league in PPG and points as a rookie. This got me noticed and recruited by CaDF, who were the reigning champions at the time and boasted one of the best lineups in arc history. I learned a lot by playing with them but I eventually left to join 2Cool, the clan I’d always wanted to join ever since I met Kamakozma when I started ARC. Unfortunately Lobo decided to disband 2cool shortly after that, so I was clanless again.
A lot of things happened at this point. One of the best clans I was a part of was CB, a clan that started with myself, my brother, ratix, dragus, and ronjintsu. We were very close and won MLA together against =XiN= and =E=. It eventually disbanded because running a clan while at the same time having the deep desire to be very competitive and win was too taxing.

I clanned with SN, which was always a dream of mine, but ultimately found them not competitive enough for my taste. One APL I was in TW with my brother, deadeye, nemesis, and couple other good players. We made it to the semi-finals but in the last game of the series Nemesis was accused of cheating and unfortunately the entire clan was disqualified. Finally there was a year I was with =E= and we had an incredibly dominant season. In the first game against CaDF (who went on to win APL that season) we were up 1-0 in game1 and in strong control of the game when I pinged out which allowed them to flag. My connection was messed up to the point where I kept pinging out so I couldn’t sub back in and we lost that game in OT. Our mental state was pretty messed up apparently because in game2 we played like shit and CaDF had us on our heels the entire game which was 0-0 for a very long time. Finally CaDF flagged on us and it seemed like our APL season was over, when I made probably my best play in an APL game ever. I rushed someone head on in the area just to the right of the middle bridge and was already weak, but just as I smoked I managed to kill. I was then approaching the high bridge leading to red base where there was a CaDF flagger was on the other side, with another player who spawned coming to help him. I chased down the flagger and killed him with a couple of bursts. By this point I had enough specials to unload and weaken/hold off that other CaDF player and my team miraculously recovered the flag. The game went on and eventually I was able to kill someone at mid, get around low to red base where tsu was flagging 1v1, and flank. we got through low and made the cap for the skin-of-our-teeth win. Our confidence was restored and we went into game 3 with a conservative approach, not wanting to take any risks with base. We were in strong control of the game but not unable to finish any flag attempts. It seemed like purex was running into rapes left and right and not playing his best. We didn’t make any substitution because the game was in overtime and CaDF still hadn’t even gotten one registered flag attempt. Finally, as were pulling flag out in green base, purex ate a missile and died so I was 1v1 against a CaDF with the flag out. Another respawned and I was in a 1v2 on that side the map and eventually die, and am surprised to respawn and see that our flag is out. From what I heard on team chat, Parrotman had made an amazingly clutch play against deadeye in our base and that purex didn’t come back to help when DE was calling for it. 0-1 loss, the first cap against our frontline ever, on CaDF’s only flag attempt of the game and our season was over in a heartbreaker. =E= didn’t disband right away, we enjoyed playing with each other and I think we might have even gone on to win an MLA or AGN or one of those leagues. As deadeye, tsu, and purex drifted away from ARC, and because of our poor reputation and unique personality the difficulty of getting good recruits, we retired the clan from ARC.

Time passed and the only clan on ARC that I had the desire to join was TBWA. I applied and actually didn’t get in! 🙂 A lot of my old =E= friends with in TW with nemesis again, and I joined. Shortly into the APL season, it was discovered that nemesis was toggling godmode, (this time there was definitive proof and I mean, everyone realized it was obvious he had more than just lag going on this time around), and once again TW got kicked out of APL. I sat that year’s APL out and decided to try building up my own clan, CEO, which I formed with old =E= members and friends, teck and dario. We had an extremely small active and playable roster. We showed our top line to every playoff game and won MLA without a single cap against us. Finally, TBWA applications opened again, and even though I had some great friends in CB, I had them as well in TBWA along with my brother, and TBWA was already a well-established clan that I wouldn’t have to struggle to keep afloat like I was doing with CEO. I got a lot of backlash for that decision but joining TBWA has been the best ARC experience for me. I finally got to win APL, with in my opinion the strongest frontline ever in new-res-ARC history. The CaDF lineup we faced in the semifinals of Toughshot Parrotman Dzaaneez and I think Techman, was an extremely tough lineup that would be APL championship worthy under normal circumstances, and we handled it with ease.

TBWA has such a long and distinguished history on this game, and I am honored to be part of carrying on the legacy.