|Black Widow Company|
|"Aut vincere aut mori"|
|Timezone:||All Time Zones|
|Join:||Apply at Forums or In-game|
|Leaders:||BWC CO: Firefly |
BWC XO: Rabbit
BWC PotBS CO: Fohmyn
BWC PotBS XO: Zanduar
Black Widow Company
Blackbeard Server (currently), British society. Any classes welcome, PVP'ers, PVE'ers, Crafters welcome. Black Widow Company is a military-style society which utilizes coordinated efforts from its members, where communication and teamwork are able to dominate. BWC prides itself on having an active military-style chain of command and a structure that ensures any and all players have several links within the chain. BWC is comprised of numerous former-military and active-duty personnel, but opens its doors to anyone who wishes to join.
BWC Member Requirements
Teamspeak is required when playing. This is a must and is non-negotiable. Microphones are not needed, however they are recommended. BWC members are also required to post a recruitment thread on the BWC Forums. It is not required, but strongly recommended, that members use the forums to keep abreast of events regarding the society. This limits "admin crap" in-game and allows BWC officers to devote more time to playing and leading.
Black Widow Company was founded in February of 2003 by four active-duty military guys stationed at Fort Meade Maryland, in the halls of Ops-2B within the National Security Agency. Actually, most of the outfit's initial structuring and organization work could theoretically be considered classified, as the planning and structuring was done on classified computer systems.
The five founding members are: BlackWidow (first CO), Kazba (first XO and later the second CO), Firefly, ZaoGao, and Kazba's wife MustangSally aka MissKazba was the fifth founding member. BWC was formed with the premise of playing Planetside when it was beyond the Alpha stage. In the meanwhile, the team played Return to Castle Wolfenstein and Battlefield:1942 while wearing the "[BWC]" tag. BWC has since adopted the [BWC] tag as its official battle-tag.
The original website was at blackwidowcompany dot com, and the forum template was "Red Ice" (aka "hot pink") much to the embarrassment of everyone who was not the CO. BlackWidow had no idea of the ribbing that BWC took because of their flaming pink forum - most likely because he had a total of four log-ins for Planetside beta. The website was originally built by Kazba, and during exclusive beta and later versions of beta, the website received recognition by the early community that comprised Planetside. BWC was a founding member of an alliance spearheaded by Clan Dragonwolves - the Auraxis Global Organization, or AGO. The AGO disappeared shortly before retail launch.
Planetside launched with its retail release in May of 2003. By this time, BWC was well-known as a force to be reckoned with, and for its military-like organization and teamwork, almost completely to the credit of Kazba. Kazba is responsible for the usage of military-style operations, laid out and designed using military OPORDER formats. When retail launched, most of BWC's core veterans called in sick or played hookie and founded the outfit that day.
BlackWidow disappeared from the game and was notoriously absent from his little cubicle inside NSA's Ops-2B. Eventually Kazba, the acting CO, forced BlackWidow to turn over command to him. Firefly took over as BWC XO. The outfit formed three distinct platoons - Wolfspider Platoon, which focused on Air Assault and was comprised primarily of a gaming group that had come nearly intact from Dark Age of Camelot; Venom Platoon, which focused on air superiority and mobile infantry; and Nightcrawler Platoon, which was mainly support, MAX, and players who could only play late at night. Wolfspider platoon was first under command of Kazba, then under Quintaro. Venom was under command of Firefly and later USMCSHORTYS, and Nightcrawler was under command of Pockets.
BWC rose to prominence with its "Warp Gate Camp-outs", where four squads of BWC members would set up battle lines around a warpgate, resulting in a population-rise indicator on the map. Another outfit would usually tag along and begin hacking and capturing base facilities, thus drawing out NC or VS forces. These forces would attempt to exit the warpgate and run into BWC, which had laid down tremendous amounts of Combat Engineering tools, had troops on the ground with anti-air and anti-armor weaponry, a squad holding the warpgate tower and running its gun emplacements while fielding MAX units on the rooves, and a squad of Reaver and Mosquito combat aircraft orbiting over the gate.
Kazba had to take a leave of absence to perform military duties at Fort Huachuca, Arizona. The outfit was left to Firefly, who served as Acting Commander. Firefly helped to found the Emerald Alliance in July of 2003 with =NCG=BigBro of New Century Gamers (who later joined BWC as "Palin"), and BWC began hosting the alliance on its own website forums. Eventually the alliance reached a membership of over an estimated eight hundred players and over 40 different outfits. BWC's ranks grew to roughly 200 people, most of them die-hard Planetside players. At this point, BWC opened its doors to Star Wars: Galaxies, and a separate platoon was formed for this new game. When Kazba returned, Firefly had to take a leave of absence due to military deployment. During this time, the Emerald Alliance came under near-total domination from Digital Marines, and it went through several drastic changes that many in the game - especially among its own allies - found reason to hate. The alliance eventually collapsed and remained in a state of chaos until BWC and Anarchy-99 later rebuilt it, under [BWC] Firefly and -A99- CycloneWarrior.
Hard feelings arose between the members of SWG and Planetside, due to feelings that SWG players had betrayed them and abandoned them. Harsh words were exchanged, and a split occured. Many people within BWC left the outfit and the game, and BWC was left to an up-and-coming officer in Venom Platoon known as Brashin. Brashin was a squad leader in Venom, and he chose GrimReaper02184 to be his XO. GrimReaper had been one of Venom Platoon's officers and was their premiere pilot and Sunderer driver. Firefly returned to BWC first as a private, then as a lieutenant with the duty of "squad leader". The website disappeared when BlackWidow stopped paying his bills, and Firefly developed the current website with the help of BWC member Willowflame, and a friend in Atlanta (Esonlemi). The outfit's membership dropped to 32 official members (including eight alts), and the outfit could barely muster five people during primetime. The floundering outfit nearly collapsed, but several outfits within the Emerald Alliance had collapsed and their members joined BWC. The Emerald Alliance fell apart (again), and was rebuilt as ULTRA, where it remains as the Emerald Server's oldest organized combat force, and probably the only serious large-scale threat to New Conglomerate and Vanu Sovereignty outfits.
Brashin eventually stepped down from inactivity due to schoolwork, and GrimReaper took over as CO. GrimReaper enjoyed his tenure as BWC's first CR5, and Firefly became the XO. The outfit enjoyed many tactical victories with GrimReaper actively leading the fight on continents of choice, and BWC had rebuilt its ranks to well over 160 people. The SOP was created for the first time, and still remains in its original incarnation with several new amendments. The Promotion Points system was created, from concepts by Dunce and Firefly. It, too, stands relatively untouched. The Operations Server was programmed, exclusively by AntiG, who earned his way into the ranks of private to Master Sergeant in record time, and eventually was inducted into the BWC corps of officers. The Legion of Honor was created, with Raptor, then Dunce and Abattior becoming the first Legionnaires. Dunce became the first officer to rise from the ranks of the Legionnaires, and was the original inspiration for the sub-rank of Legionnaire-Officer, a senior rank of Lieutenant. Dunce also developed the first Fruit Salad display, though when he retired from Planetside, support to this application was lost. The website was upgraded and slowly updated by Dunce, AntiG, and Firefly.
For the first time, Task Forces were created, giving actual justification for BWC officers. The first of these teams was Task Force Ranger, an original concept by Epicballa and Dur13l, who were tapped to lead the task force. Task Force Commando was created from a concept by Firefly, and Fielding was asked to lead the new task force. A Scout/Sniper detachment was created, under command of Eversmann and Ghostcell - Task Force Commando became Task Force Special Forces (aka SpecFor). Task Force Rampage rolled Armor, with DucusSumus and Mori at the wheel. Task Force SOAR was also drafted into concept, with AntiG and his pilots providing Close Air Support. Due to lack of interest, SOAR was shut down and then merged with Rampage. Kazba returned from his duties in Arizona and rejoined BWC first as a private, then as an officer with responsibilities that focused on web-building and programming. Kazba is responsible for two different incarnations of the Fruit Salad display, the latest being adopted as the standard signature banner.
Firefly took over as outfit leader and CO when GrimReaper resigned to play World of Warcraft. WoW had hit the retail shelves and was sapping many of BWC's players. Recruitment drives were instituted, and the outfit began working on a Planetside recruit video using FRAPS to record in-game footage. Several dozen people rejoined BWC from the original ranks, and later left again. Dur13l took over as the XO, and Kurael took over as TF Ranger CO. The position of Sergeant-Major was created, with Ironfist1 serving in this position as the first. He later resigned and Rabbit took on the position.
Task Forces were suspended with the brief rise in intense competition between task forces. Many members felt that they only knew people in their task force as opposed to across the entire outfit. This led to a disjointed effort at playing, and coordination and teamwork suffered greatly. The outfit also instituted a policy of "Every Soldier a Rifleman First", and required Medium Assault to be in the certification list of every player. Task Forces eventually returned, though not with as much fanfare and with stricter guidelines. The playerbase began to rebuild the outfit, and things began to look up.
BWC then brought in a second game, Battlefield Two. Again, the outfit was broken into Platoons and redesignated a Company. Each platoon is home to a game, which currently are Battlefield Two and Planetside. Initially, Kazba led the BF2 platoon with AntiG as platoon XO, and KIAsan led BWC's Planetside platoon. The line-up changed and AntiG took command. The platoon became a company, and BWC grew.
BWC reworked the Planetside task forces and made them more specialty-oriented. The Planetside branch was brought to full company status, with a platoon for non-TF personnel, and each TF serving as its own platoon. TF Ranger remained elite heavy infantry with a scout/sniper detachment, TF Commando took on an air-mobile light infantry (agile/Mossie) team called Lightning in addition to its commandos, and TF Dragon became the home of the air and armor.
BWC attended SOE's 2006 "Fan Faire", where eight of its members were among the eleven attendees who came just for Planetside. Because of this, the meeting with Planetside developers was a small and personal affair. BWC came into the spotlight when it posted "developer notes" on the official forums from the Fan Faire meeting (with dev permission) along with pictures of never-before-seen design footage of upcoming weapons, vehicles, and game implements. BWC also created a prototype scrimmage system using the Test Server (which it used in the ULTRA Alliance), which led to the implementation of "Outfit Wars" - a combat system in Planetside where outfits competed against each other in ladder matches. BWC itself participated, winning three of five matches, losing one, and drawing another. BWC also counts among its accomplishments dueling with Sturmgrenadier in Planetside, defeating their armored assaults on Hossin and Cyssor with much smaller forces.
BWC officially closed its doors to Planetside in early 2007 as the game was no longer fun for anyone, and most of its remaining members were forming up with other outfits. During its run, BWC remained in the top twenty of all 400+ TR outfits for Outfit Points on the Emerald server and until closing remained in a state of flux between 5th and 6th - four outfits dominated the top four spots with between 400-700 members, while BWC had a fraction of their numbers. BWC moved to EVE Online and BF2142, and began looking towards Huxley and Lost Colony as its next "main game". Neither materialized, and after several games came and went without taking hold, BWC opted to try its hand at an MMO. It entered Pirates of the Burning Sea at the beginning of Stress Test 2 and began recruiting. At the end of Open Beta, BWC has over 125 members (all of them active). Rabbit was promoted to BWC XO and Fohmyn took the job of serving as PotBS Company Commander.
BWC also actively participates twice a year in "Community Gatherings" where members meet up and play a weekend 26-hr Paintball scenario. Many of the members are friends in real life and thus unofficial ad hoc gatherings occur all the time.