A Triumph Interview With Vor: Success, Advice, and Appreciation

An Interview with Vor
Success, Advice, and Some Mushy Appreciation

Conducted by Grea Kriopia

"Community is much more than belonging to something; it's about doing something together that makes belonging matter."

Vor is undoubtedly well-known in Europeia as a talented player, full of dedication, enthusiasm, and a unique sense of personality that has all contributed to the Triumph being held in honor of his successes. He has served in a lengthy list of positions: first as Deputy Minister of Integration, three times over as Minister of Integration, twice as Grand Admiral, and now as Vice President. Such a long career speaks to his commitment to the region and of all the great outcomes Vor has accomplished.

With this wealth of experience, Vor agreed to sit down for an interview with EBC to talk more about what drew him into Europeia, what kept him here, and what advice he offers for the future.

Later on, though, and unbeknownst to Vor, EBC Reporter Grea Kriopia also hit the streets of Europeia to get personal comments and insights from several Europeians on their favorite memories, admirations, and encouragements for Vor after his many years of working closely with dozens of people in the region.

Reporter's Note: My goal when starting out with this idea was to get past the quantifiable ranks and titles of Vor's career and look more closely at the impact Vor has had on those around him. Make no mistake that the ranks and titles matter, however, just as important can be funny moments and demonstrations of true character that define someone's legacy. Yes, it is a little mushy, but I think that's a good thing and sometimes what you need to express appreciation.

GK: Thank you for taking the time between League games to speak with me!! The schedule of the former Grand Admiral and Vice President is surely busy, and I totally did not have to bully you to sit down for this interview. Let's start simple: How did you get started in NationStates and get involved in Europeia?

I pretty much jumped straight into Europeia through a recruitment telegram, and found my way to the forums from there.

GK: And then what drew you to Europeia’s Executive? What role did you find most challenging?

I've always been interested in community structure and what gets people engaged. I started out in what was then the Ministry of Interior for that reason, and focussed heavily on integration. Getting to know what kind of integration strategies are likely to succeed or not based on more experienced people such as Malashaan was a very awesome experience. It introduces you to a pretty niche part of community building that feels sort of under-discovered. I went on to fill the position of Deputy Minister of Integration for my early involvement in the region, and it's always struck me as the most interesting section of Executive work since then. What I found most challenging is finding a new way forward, a way to break the mold that gets other people excited about new projects and hyped for change. I still struggle with that, to be honest, and I think it's a constant challenge for me whenever I try to form plans for the future.

GK: That makes sense! Retaining interest is a persistent problem for integration and outreach teams. Your talent for integration is also well known in Euro, but we'll get to that later -- What do you appreciate the most about Europeia? Any favorite memories?

The way this community engages in feedback, criticism, and judgment is my favourite of any community I've seen so far. It makes you feel like people expect something of you, and would be upset if you didn't do something with the ability that they think you're capable of using. Arguments for the most part are arguing about actual substance, policy positions, and effects on the region is a refreshingly concrete way. In short, I guess you could say that my favourite thing about Europeia is the quality of the political discourse in the region.

Vor: As for favourite memories, I don't think I have a particular one, but the night-time tag raids with people like Andy, upc, gc, Istillian, and others with the accompanying unhinged VC probably comprise my favourite times doing stuff in Europeia.

GK: So wholesome. So, knowing all of that, what drives you to continue playing NationStates?

People like Kazaman, Pichtonia, JayDee, Westinor, or HEM. Seeing other people who are smarter and more capable than you and how they go about playing the game makes you feel like there's always another layer of competency and gameplay to enjoy, and chasing that at my own pace keeps the game exciting for me.

GK: Honestly could not agree more, seeing other people's success and climb can be an incredible motivator. To wrap this up, do you have any parting advice to new players in Euro, or NS in general?

Surround yourself with good people! When you like the other people you're working with, you're more likely to do well, cooperate more, grow together, and have a more fun time overall. If you ever have the choice between working with the people you enjoy the company of, and pursuing a more gameplay-oriented interest, I would always give serious consideration to the former.

GK: Thank you for your time, Mr. Vice President!

Now, in light of his own advice, when I set out to collect memories from fellow Europeians about Vor, there was no denying that vor had also surrounded himself with some good people. I trekked high and low for tales of Vor's greatness from many he spent time with and I came back with a mountain of responses packed with humor, affection, and admiration for Vor.

First things first, I went to walk upside down for a bit while tracking down the fabulous @Istillian who fondly recalled over some late BBQ lunch some of his earliest memories of Vor:
"Almost all of my early memories of Vor and I getting to know each other are within the ERN, where mostly we would just grill each other in VC's on being slow at switching. Sadly, Vor was and is much faster at switching than me, but that didn't stop me from trying to beat him or calling him slow. Because of how impressively he picked up R/D in the ERN, during my first term as Grand Admiral I had a discussion with Vor about potential leadership in Command and in the Admiralty, including his thoughts on serving as Grand Admiral himself. He got banned from Europeia shortly after that discussion and ruined all of my plans for succession. Furthermore, early in Vor's military career, I had to call him out on using a now well-known puppet, ist_is_aus, because of allied militaries thinking I was mercing in raids when acting on behalf of the Europeian Government, causing a few headaches and awkward situations for me, which I now look back on in hindsight fondly.

In all honesty though, despite his at times abrasive nature, Vor has always been one of those people that I've loved and appreciated because he's brutally honest with me about my leadership, my decisions, and with his perspectives on a situation - most of the time I even agree with him too. He has mastered many military techniques to perfection, is relentless with his work ethic, and genuinely cares to help those he operates with get better, and be better. There's a lot to learn from him."

I did a stopover with @Seva who paused from his furious work to comment on Vor's hard work and love of Geoguessr:
"I think my favourite moment was when he organised the Geoguessr tournament and how we've been sending each other our best games there! The tournament was a very impressive feat and required a lot of dedication and organisational skills and it was fun to share our love for the game afterwards"

Then, I was off to the land of the Scots where I caught up with the iconic @Andusre who shared a wholesome personal memory while we split a pizza:
“The memory that comes to mind first is our Valheim era in June. we would wake up, play Valheim for hours on end often through the night (although this was at the height of summer so it was more like two days separated by a few hours of darkness), go back to sleep, rinse, and repeat. Easily among my favourite gaming experiences of all time, it was so nice especially after a grueling time at uni in May to get some space to chill with a supremely awesome person who'd entertain literally anything I wanted to yap about. I rarely get to do those days on end of nothing but gaming with friends anymore, perhaps for the best as life needs to move on, but it's always something that I remember for a very long time and which makes me so happy and at peace. Our valheim era was immaculate vibes all round and I look back on it with much nostalgia.”

Hunting down @Kazaman took some time, but I finally tracked him to an EIA offsite somewhere in [REDACTED] where he shared the following before promptly giving me the boot:
“I'd probably say his sense of humour and camaraderie. He wrote a long fanfiction about Istillian for his birthday in ... I think it was early 2021 ... and that's probably a great example of those qualities”

Next, I took a breather over a cup of tea with the most delightful @Pichtonia who waxed poetically about being willing to go to war for Vor and admired his passion for integration:
“Vor is a wonderful friend, and it's difficult to choose just one favourite memory of him. He's so incredibly funny and chill, I genuinely enjoy every conversation I have with him.

Thinking back, I first got to know Vor a little better when we were both engaged in the same Europeian political party, the EPP. Already then, Vor left me in awe with how seriously and well informed he thought about integration and interior policy. Unfortunately, I took a break and later Vor must have taken one too, at the very least he wasn't really involved anymore when I returned properly. But when he did gloriously return in, I think, 2020, I was very glad he did. Vor immediately rocked the ERN, which was still in a dire state when he did, and his contributions at the time will have been crucial to the later return and success of our Navy.

But it was his earlier passion for integration that caught my eye when I was trying to build a Cabinet for my Presidential term. I asked Vor to be my Interior Minister, thankfully he agreed, and immediately he started working on ideas and fleshing out our campaign vision where it concerned Interior. And yet, after Kura and I won the election, Vor seemed to be the most controversial nominee for Cabinet. Part of it was understandable, for one, Vor hadn't really been prominent in Interior and especially recruitment previously. But by and large, I felt like the Senate was unnecessarily unreasonable, and it really angered me. I would have went to war with the Senate over confirming him, because Vor was and is worth it.

Thankfully, it didn't get that far, he was confirmed. And had a great term! Vor created a super cool Europeian monopoly board for a recruitment game. And even as Grand Admiral and in other roles we all were able to see his creativity with engaging contests and games.”

Then, I was climbing to the top of a weather station to seek the wisdom of @GrandfatherClock who offered sage words of lard for Vor:
"I submit examples of typical conversations of me and Vor, both of which I treasure dearly: tell Vor that I miss running water and call cpr"

I had a layover with Europeia's most prolific loopy-armed mammal @Maowi who gushed about the enthusiasm Vor offered her:
"It is not very specific but I would say throughout my whole time in the ERN, I wouldn't have had half as much fun if not for Vor. He is an amazing hype man (and flag bullier) which helped so much especially when I was still learning everything and finding my feet!!! My first few ERN ops with him & ica & cove are some of my favourite Europeia memories. Also, another slightly random Vor memory is during my term as Minister of Outreach, he was one of the only people that said yes when I reached out at the start of the term asking if people wanted regular recruitment reminders. Then he put up with me messaging him every three days for the WHOLE TERM trying to think of creative ways to phrase "please recruit" and that was pretty funny."

And, finally, after all of that, I ended my trip at 34 Goldenblock Avenue sneaking in the back to escape the Vice President's notice where @JayDee squeezed in an effusive comment on Vor's energy between meetings:
"I think I could point to anytime Vor and I collaborated to marshal forces for an operation, the Far East Operation was a particularly fun one spending hours annoying Europeians to turn up. However, I think my best memory is working together on our platform. I really hate writing platforms, but Vor helped to make it a more bearable process with his energy and boundless ideas for us to bounce off each other. Vor just brings that energy to everything he does."

One thing these memories make clear is that @Vor's impact on Euro as a community has been unmistakable and, likewise, that we as a community are grateful for the hard work Vor has done. You can nominate someone for an Ovation or Triumph on the basis of their good deeds, but it's much more difficult to uncover the true depth of their contributions to the region until you see how they have impacted those around them. It is, after all, not so much about belonging to Europeia as it is about doing things together that makes belonging matter.

Here's to you, @Vor, and thanks for everything you've done!
Really unique way of approaching the interview, especially with the Triumph ahead - this was a fantastic idea, GK, and really helps to capture the soul of the interviewee :> I had an absolutely joyful time reading this!!!
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This was such an awesome read (and I am most certainly NOT biased!)

thank you for putting this together GK! It was so cool to read all the comments from others below!