Sunday, January 18, 2009

Cordova Decosta Interview

Holly Honi, Cordova Decosta, Vulpine Eldrich

Vulpine Eldrich: Hello everyone! I'm here this evening with King Cordova Decosta of the Kingdom of Misfits, and his 'Queen by Association,' Holly Honi. Thank you, both of you, for taking the time to host me here in your home!

Cordova Decosta: you're welcome and welcome :)

Holly Honi: welcome

Vulpine Eldrich: So, I have to ask, what on earth inspired you to be the King of Misfits? Or is this something that comes naturally?

Cordova Decosta: Well, I think we are all in sl because we are in a sense misfits. So the name fit, and everyone loves it. Everyone else is just in denial. lol

Vulpine Eldrich: lol, and how would you define the term 'misfit'?

Cordova Decosta: Well, honestly, it would be someone who "isn't normal," so everyone is a misfit in their own way. To be honest, normal is boring.

Vulpine Eldrich: So with a name and attitude like that, have you had an interesting Tiny Empires career in reaching this elevated rank?

Cordova Decosta: I never thought of it as a career. It's a game, a fun one, and a great way to meet people, get invited to formal parties, and have fun.

Vulpine Eldrich: How many kingdoms have you been in before reaching this one?

Cordova Decosta: Due to up-line ascensions, this will be my 8th and last kingdom.

Vulpine Eldrich: After that, do you run out of lives? Don't answer that if you don't want to! Seriously, it sounds like you've had quite a lot of experience within different kingdoms. What, in your opinion, is the most essential ingredient(s) in making and keeping a kingdom together and happy?

Cordova Decosta: To me, the most important part isn’t the upper tiers of a down-line. It’s the mid level and below. They are the ones who keep lines and kingdoms growing, so they are the ones you should pay most attention to. Make everyone feel like a part of the kingdom, and let people know that even if you are a prince, and they are just starting, you are there to help them understand the basics.

Vulpine Eldrich: So you're still there for your people to help learn the basics, monarch and all. How and where do they meet, communicate, and get a chance to beseech you for your wisdom?

Cordova Decosta: Well, my IM is always available to anyone who needs anything. I’ve made and/or collected and edited a lot of notecards. I give them the links to the wiki and your blog, for example. There is group chat, and we plan to have parties and events to give everyone a sense of community :)

Vulpine Eldrich: So where will these group parties be held?

Cordova Decosta: Some will be here, and we have a princess who has very graciously allowed us to use her sim, The Point, for larger events.

Vulpine Eldrich: So will you have a chance to help organize these events, Holly, or is he going to be a solo act?

Holly Honi: We plan most stuff together. I like giving 'social' input

Vulpine Eldrich: Such as....?

Cordova Decosta: She's the wonder woman behind the scenes ;)

Holly Honi: We talk about whether to have live entertainers and who. If there should be a theme, and if we should open it to people outside of the kingdom.

Holly Honi: Of course, it's not always just MY input. He gets opinions on some stuff from other members of the kingdom too, because it's really THEIR (OUR) events.

Vulpine Eldrich: Right, and speaking of members, how did you manage to put the kingdom together in the first place? Something that size doesn't happen by accident.

Cordova Decosta: lol Well, ummmm… my old title was the royal schmoozer, and as Holly said, I am pretty good at that ;) But a lot of my down-line are people whom I knew from other kingdoms. They ended up joining me because we remained friends. And then they get their friends, and it just starts to grow.

Holly Honi: Which is how WE met.

Vulpine Eldrich: So how did you two meet?

Cordova Decosta: I bribed her.

Holly Honi: and schmoozed

Cordova Decosta: And then tried to talk her into moving under me the next day. From there we became friends, and the friendship grew.

Holly Honi: But we were friends for a long time.

Vulpine Eldrich: And how long did it take you to play Tiny Empires before you decided you want to be a King?

Cordova Decosta: I swore I’d never, ever, EVER in a million years ascend. But as I started taking the steps to be grand viceroy and consulting with members of my down-line , they intimated that I should consider ascension. So I thought about it.

Vulpine Eldrich: And after you thought about it, what happened?

Cordova Decosta: It was a very hard decision to make. My former queen was very good to us, but then I IMed her, and spoke with her. She was, and still is, very supportive.

Vulpine Eldrich: Which Queen was this?

Cordova Decosta: Queen Calypso of Treasure Island.

Vulpine Eldrich: So you're saying she deserves some of the credit for helping create the Kingdom of Misfits?

Cordova Decosta: Well, in truth everyone who was ever a part of my up-line and/or down-line deserves some credit.

Vulpine Eldrich: And if any of them- or anyone else- wanted to come meet you in world, hang out together, and do things together, where would they go and what would they find themselves doing?

Cordova Decosta: We like to hop all over all sl and see a lot of live singers, and I dj, so they could come hear great music, whether I’m playing it or someone is singing. Or they are always welcome to come to our house.

Vulpine Eldrich looks at her map.

Vulpine Eldrich: “Nueva vida.” What does that mean?

Cordova Decosta: “New life” – A new beginning.

Vulpine Eldrich: So in this new life, both here in Second Life and in Tiny Empires, what have you kept from the old life that's helped you get to where you are at?

Cordova Decosta: Well, obviously memories and loyalty to my friends and subjects, because they helped me get here. The most important thing is that I always remember that behind the avatar— no matter whether its human, robot, tiny, furry etc—there's still another human being who has feelings, and the words I say to them impact them, whether good or bad.

Vulpine Eldrich: Very good! So you've become a King, you've got a group of loyal people, and a Queen to help you go from here. What other plans do you have for your Tiny Empires future, beyond Kingdom events?

Cordova Decosta: Well, my ranking on TE doesn’t really matter, so I don’t really plan to become one of the top ten. It is, after all, still just a game, and it should be fun. So I guess I plan to help others understand that as well. And to have fun—this is sl, it’s supposed to be fun.

Vulpine Eldrich: And what do you do when you find people in TE, underneath you or (before now, I suppose) above you, who are determined to spoil your and other people's fun here in SL and TE?

Holly Honi: Cord has always been awesome at talking things out.

Cordova Decosta: I talk to them and try to work things out. But if that doesn’t work, you can't let them get to you. If you do, then they win.

Vulpine Eldrich: And, would I be right in saying that a parting of the ways often follows in those cases?

Cordova Decosta: Maybe a brief parting, but I’m always open to giving people a second chance.

Vulpine Eldrich: Very good. So as you look at the game of Tiny Empires, what would you most like to see added to it, or changed about it?

Holly Honi: How long do you have?

Cordova Decosta: Ohhh, well what I want to see won’t be too popular. I want it to be more a game of chance. For example, an evil trader who gives tainted seeds instead of gold seeds, so that you only get half your land value. Instead of sabotage, I think you should get the acres if successful and not investigated.

Vulpine Eldrich: So, it would be more accurate to call it theft instead of sabotage in that case.

Cordova Decosta: And then there’s commandeering land like they did in feudal times. But the most important change is for some to lighten up about it. It’s a hud, a great way to meet new people, and make friends. It should be just that—a fun thing, not a competition. There's really no "win" here.

Vulpine Eldrich: So when you send a bribe, you apparently follow up with more than just a bribe offer on the hud, to judge by the story of you and Holly. What sort of things do you tell a prospective bribe target to get them to join you?

Cordova Decosta: Well that varies on the person. Usually, I tell them I’m sending a bribe, that we have a no drama kingdom, everyone gets along with each other, we have fun joking in group chat, and that to me they wouldn’t be just a number of acres.

Vulpine Eldrich: But sometimes they aren't quite 'real people', are they? Or how do you consider alts in the game?

Cordova Decosta: I have said this many times. I do have an alt (only one alt to get new players into the game), but I think that if you have a lot of alts to help your line advance, you take this silly little hud entirely too seriously.

Vulpine Eldrich: So how many alts are in the Kingdom of Misfits, or would you have any sort of reasonable guess on that?

Cordova Decosta: Not that many, but I wouldn’t have any real way of knowing for sure, except in a few cases.

Vulpine Eldrich: Probably not. And if your Kingdom were a movie, what would its rating be?

Cordova Decosta: PG-13. We are adults and adult chat is allowed, but for the most part we just like to have fun and pick on each other.

Vulpine Eldrich: And how often, now, does the term 'misfit' get used to help pick on each other? Have you got any good examples for us?

Cordova Decosta: Hmmm we've never called each other that, unless someone wants the name misfit in their title.

Holly Honi: I use it to bribe sometimes. When someone has an unusual name, I say they sound like they would fit in with us well.

Vulpine Eldrich: "Come join us, we're misfits, we have fun, and you will too?"

Holly Honi: Exactly.

Cordova Decosta: That works. You just gave me my next bribe speech ;)

Vulpine Eldrich laughs

Holly Honi: Cord always has had a gift for fun and banter, and he can get the chat going well.

Vulpine Eldrich: So besides telling people to lighten up, and remember that we're all human (more or less), what would you tell someone as advice when they're just getting started in Tiny Empires? What to do or not do?

Holly Honi: I just have to say if it wasn't for Cord, I would hardly know the first thing about TE. He always takes the time to explain what things mean and NOT just to people in his kingdom.

Cordova Decosta: Save gold as often as possible, and if they aren’t happy in the spot they are in, talk to their liege and go up the ranks. If someone isn’t happy in my kingdom and wants to move, I’ll help them find a kingdom they are more suited to, because I want everyone who plays this game to enjoy it and not get lost in the shuffle.

Vulpine Eldrich: Very good! And can either of you think of something I missed in our little discussion here?

Cordova Decosta: You forgot to ask if we were a tree what kind would we be and why. Lolol, just kidding. You did well at poking into our heads.

Vulpine Eldrich: All right, what tree are you? A tall sturdy oak, or a tough cherry, or just a nasty prickly thorn tree? lol, seriously, thank you for your time and hospitality, both of you.

Cordova Decosta: A weeping willow, because it bends down to protect ;)

Holly Honi: I will say from the time I met Cord, it was easy to see that he was suited to be in this game of te to help people, which would be a natural leader and King. He has been the 'go to' person for me and many others.

Cordova Decosta: Thank you for coming to our humble abode.

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