I will try and summarize my gaming history as well as I can. I will try not to ramble off onto to many tangents. My gaming history started with Everquest. I believe I was about 20 or 21 years old at the time. My friend introduced me to Everquest and said that I had to try it. I loved the game. I loved the social aspect and I of course loved the original troll shape. I mostly played a Troll Shadowknight by the name of Buzak on the Druzzil Ro server. It drew me in as I am sure many get drawn in with their first MMO staying up late and playing whenever you had free time. I also really liked how you could put your best gear onto a fresh level 1 character if you so desired. It was mainly just me and my friend that played the game and I never really got into any guilds.
After Everquest I started to play a new MMO at the time named Anarchy Online. It was the first Sci-Fi MMO of it's time and it promised a three faction (Clan, Omni, Neutral) world war with an ongoing story plot run by the company with in game events orchastrated by the company. I totally immersed myself into this game. It had an indepth skill system and it was the first game that created and used instancing. I created a clan Opifex Agent and his name was Redruum. I leveled up pretty slowly as I always have in my gaming life, but this time was a little different. I felt the urge that I should start a guild or organization as they were called in Anarchy Online. The name of my organization was the Clan Anarchist Syndicate or CAS for short. I seem to have a talent for recruiting members so it wasn't long before my organization was fairly large. I would organize "raids" in the enemy Omni zones and what was great is almost all of the enemy zones including their towns were PVP enabled. I had a "reporter" in my organization that would write up each of our "raids" and at the time you could submit them to Funcom's page and they would post them on their website. After a while it seems I became a Most Wanted man in Rubi Ka by Funcom's Omni Pol police ahead of some of their own NPC's that they would use on in game story events.
Henry Radiman was the leader of all the Clans and a Funcom NPC character used for in game story events. After a while a Funcom employee contacted me in game, in character of course, and told me that a group by the name of Red Freedom needed a good agent that could snipe a target when the time arised. I started getting involved in these in game scenario's run by Funcom and they would tell me what they needed me to do. The story went on and there was to be this huge public speech done by the leader of the Clans, Henry Radiman, an NPC character run by Funcom. Funcom makes a big deal about it and posts the event on their website to keep the storyline going. Before the day of this speech in front all these players my "contact" in Red Freedom told me that for the good of all the Clans I must assassinate Henry Radiman during his speech. I am sitting in my chair thinking HELL YEAH I will do it lol, but I played out my role in game and asked a few questions as to why. My contact said he was really working with the Omni and I will be a hero to the people. I get there that night on my perch and I shoot when they tell me to shoot. Radiman is dead. Mass chaos erupts in the zone. The next day Funcom posts on their website that Omni Pol was able to track some communications between myself and my contact, so they mention my name on their site and write some stuff I never said, but was pretty fun and cool. But anyways I could go on and on with that. You can see why I loved Anarchy Online. The GM's would have events in game and involve the players and spawn random things out of the sky and it was pretty fun. As time went on it seemed that Funcom had a hard on for me as their dev's created a suit of armor in the game named after my organization.
While all this was going on a woman by the name of Heather Chaplin contacted me in game. She said to me, "Hello Redruum I am writing a book and I was talking with Funcom and they thought it would be a good idea if I contact you and interview you about your play in Anarchy Online for this chapter on MMO's in my book." I of course said sure! We talked off and on for a while and I ended up being highlighted in the MMO chapter of her book named Smartbomb: The Quest for Art, Entertainment, and Big Bucks in the Videogame Revolution
. Unfortunately I can't seem to find the interview any longer, but there was a guild in AO named Gridstream Productions that would stream music that people could listen to while they played and they had an interview with myself, the author of the book and Gaute Godager.
After years of Anarchy Online I started to play EverQuest 2 when it came out. This is where the name Hieru originated. It was given to me by a random name generator within EQ2. I played a Paladin on the Crushbone server and made various other characters on the Crushbone server and did some raiding. I got bored after a while and started playing numerous other MMO's that were out at the time until the announcement of the release of a new MMO caught my eye. That new MMO was named Age of Conan. Before the game was even released I knew I was going to love the game due to it's mature content, boobs, decapitations, blood, etc. It had been a while since I actually ran a guild and I made the decision that I am going to make a guild for Age of Conan. Since the game was very lore heavy I knew I couldn't go in with a guild name like Clan Anarchist Synicate so after some heavy thought I decided on the name Acolytes. Skullcrusher was my very first member and is still with us to this day. Being pretty active with the beta and the AoC community I was some how able to get contacted by G4 who wanted to fly me out to their building in CA for a show they had called the MMO Report. At the time we had a member in Acolytes that worked for E!. I asked him if he could get me Morgan Webb's, Olivia Munn's and some other people's email addresses. He of course came through for me and I ended up emailing those people stating that I would be in their studio's on such and such date and I was wondering if I could sit in on their shows that day I was there. I never got a response from any of them, but the contact that initially contacted me at G4 was furious and wanted to know how I got those people's email addresses. I refused to say how of course, so he canceled my trip and interview at G4 and informed me that I am permanently banned from the G4 building. I never get tired of telling that story, but anyways I was able to recruit a large number of members for the launch of the game and as they say, the rest is history.
I can honestly say that I feel like the Acolytes are a second family to me. I have been through a lot of up's and down's through life and there has always been one constant here for me besides my children and that is this community. Life changes over the years that is for sure. Some good, some bad. I personally cannot play video games like I once was able to due to various reasons, but I don't think I will ever be able to truly give up this Acolyte community. At this point of the communities life it is much bigger then any one man or woman. It has taken on a life of it's own. It is an entity upon itself. People will come and people will go as the years roll on, but it seems so far that over all these years the Acolytes will continue on.