|VU on Swedish national radio|
|11:06:28 Sep 30th 20 - Ms. Lillamy:|
Enjoy, the story about Zeon. The only true belief.
|11:41:51 Sep 30th 20 - Lord Caedus:|
I'm a scholar/researcher in New Religious Movements (popularly known as cults) and am currently doing my PhD on it. I work alongside scholars in Myth and online community - Maybe I should write a paper on it! haha
|14:36:24 Sep 30th 20 - Penguin (Clown Bosnian Horse):|
augh you could translate it all. and long time no see adrian!
|16:28:05 Sep 30th 20 - Ms. Lillamy:|
|16:28:18 Sep 30th 20 - Ms. Lillamy:|
|13:28:09 Oct 1st 20 - Lord Caedus:|
I spoke to my collegues - we're going to do an academic podcast to discuss it. I might develop it into a paper after.
I need to scour the forums for religious iconography now... (feel free to help!) and if you do fancy translating it, that would be incredible.
|16:17:54 Oct 1st 20 - Sir Hemulen:|
We got some on our harddrives. We can gather some stuff and dump it somewhere?
|16:42:10 Oct 1st 20 - Lord Caedus:|
Sounds great - you could maybe google drive link share? Or dropbox? I'll message you my email address.
|08:55:25 Jan 7th 21 - Mr. Roxbury:|
P3 Sveriges Radio - VU/ZEON
In an online game, a group of players suddenly started praying to a God that no one previously had heard of. "They didn't understand that the game was created for us, the other kingdoms did".
With each passing month, their numbers grow, and suddenly everyone is faced with the ultimatum; join or die.
"If they choose to take a different path, then its not up to us. It's not we who choose their demise. It's their decision."
Two brothers start a sect with one single goal, world domination.
"Sometimes you get the whip, and sometimes you get to control the whip".
You're listening to P3 Spel, and this is - Waiting for Armageddon.
Chapter 1, section 1. My father said, be there a map. And be it no bigger than 2500x2500px.
The map was blank. The map was filled by the lushest green.
Chapter 3, section 1. My father said, be there mountains. So the mountains and grasslands became friends.
In the bible, Moses describes how the earth was born. But this is not the bible, and the place described is far from earth. Instead, this is a world called Visual Utopia. Started as a school project, a web based strategy game where you get the option to place cities, collect resources and build kingdoms.
However, VU quickly evolved into something else. To a vibrant world with devoted followers who have remained active for over a decade. They followed their God, ZeTa. As with many other religious stories, it was started with two brothers.
"I'm Adrian, I started a religion in an online game called Visual Utopia". I wrote holy texts and recruited players to the game. It grew to take over almost the entire game. "My name is August, I'm Adrians big brother. I was the organizer of this project. I helped put his wild ideas into practice. "
Adrian and August, two brothers who started playing VU in the early 2000's. When their work was done, they had put their mark on the game for years to come. For this is the story of how they created a religious flood wave that washed over Visual Utopia. So many players would follow their path that the rules had to be changed in accordance.
"What I liked when I started the game, was that besides the demands of activity.. if you fail to login you can die mercilessly." "What you spend months to build, can be lost in hours of inactivity. There is no safety net where you'd lose 20% of your holdings, you will lose everything. "
The game has no safety net, you depend on yourself and your allies to survive.
"The player base take this game very seriously. They know that if you fail to login today, you're not only putting yourself in danger, but your failure to defend could threaten the survival of the entire kingdom".
In death, there are no second chances. You're deleted from the map, and relegated to a lower map, a form of purgatory where all the other failed players end up. A losers bracket where you wait out your days until Armageddon.
Zeon's holy flame symbolizes Armageddon, that God put onto us as punishment for our sins. But it also stands for rebirth, and the chance of salvation; a penance for our sins. Armageddon will embrace us all, and only then the weight of mortality will be shed and we can live under his light - forever.
Armageddon is a mechanic that ends the map and the era. An era lasts for roughly three months, followed by Armageddon and a map reset. The players in the strongest kingdom end up winners, and what makes it special is that the players themselves trigger Armageddon.
"Armageddon is the hardest spell to cast, it takes a lot of resources to cast and defend"
Armageddon is cast on a town, which starts a timer to end the world. If the city is lost, the timer is reset and arma is cancelled. To win, you have to destroy everything you built. After Arma, the world starts anew.
"I spent much of my time in high school consumed by playing Visual Utopia"
After several eras had passed, a similar pattern of victory and defeat was obvious. It was the same kingdoms that ended up competing for the win. It was a small game, so the winning kingdoms had around 30 players each. The game started to become mundane and predictable, so Adrian and August decided it was time for a change. There was an untapped potential in the game, a chance for Adrian and August to introduce roleplay to the game - to conquer the game with the Zeon sect. 09:03/27:17 cont.
|15:42:49 Jan 7th 21 - Lord Caedus:|
This is fantastic! Thank you!
|20:55:28 Jun 24th 21 - Endless (Ms. Tyranny):|
|10:08:31 Jun 25th 21 - Mr. Pelico:|
Just an update - I'm currently working with a professor who has been researching online religion/communities through video games. Once I finish on my current publications, I will move on to the above.
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