The SuperPower 2 Community Discord was created on September 21st, 2017, by Jesse, in Pensacola, Florida. The Discord was created for better communication between server hosts and players. If a host posted a message on the Discussions, it would easily get buried under forum posts, or receive little to no attention. When the server was first created, Server Host’s could contact Jesse and request their own independent room, or “category” for their server to be able to post their rules, reservations, or notifications their server was online.
Another reason for the Discord’s creation was lack of moderation of the forums. Any Community could be plagued by a lack of moderation, however; for a community like the SuperPower Community, clutter and trolls could easily corrupt the Discussions, however, a Discord could be much better moderated. Another reason was what Jesse felt was the need for instant message communication for the Community. In the community, political discussion and debate is commonplace. In order to facilitate this, a convenient instant-messaging platform (Like discord) is better experience on a forum. Additionally, instant messaging could be individual’s seeking support; seeking support on a Forum-like environment can be very frustrating due to the delay in responses.
Along with those main reasons, there was a lack of unity in the Community. As seen with smaller indie game Communities, Discord has helped unite, and bolster growth for many of them. This often lead to close contact with the Developers. Given the reasons above, it created a massive incentive to create the discord.
The Gold Rush
After the first twenty people joined, growth of the server rapidly accelerated. What was one, maybe two people a day turned into five, six, seven ten people a day. Word got around that the SuperPower 2 Discord was a thing, and that people were actually joining it. Jesse and Icey had come up with a main pitch for the Server Host’s of the community, that if they joined the SuperPower Discord, these hosts would be granted their own “section” of the Discord that they could fully manage, and could use to advertise and broadcast news and rules about their server. This led to a mass influx of Server Host’s into the server. As more Server Hosts joined, the influential Modders of the Community began to join the server. After the Modders and Server Hosts began joining the server, a true “Gold Rush,” or influx of people, began flooding into the server.
Around March of 2018 is when the “Pinnacle” of the SuperPower Community Discord can be described as. The server was growing at a rate of about five to ten people a day, there was over 200 members, of which the majority were active. Approval ratings for the staff members were high, mods were being updated, it was a good time for the community in general and it can be described as the pinnacle of the Discord. A major revelation came when Tannman discovered that the GolemLabs Team had developed a website for SuperPower 3, with the simple caption “coming soon.” Shortly after this, another user, Gavrilo, called the GolemLabs headquarters and asked on behalf of the Community if this website was actually registered to the GolemLabs company; to which, the CEO of GolemLabs confirmed it.
This sparked a hope in the Community that SuperPower 3, the much anticipated sequel to SuperPower 2, was actually going to happen. In the middle of the excitement, however, a major achievement was reached in the Discord. The entire GolemLabs Development Team joined the SuperPower Discord. This was absolutely monumental to The Founders, who considered this one of their greatest achievements; that the server was now recognized by the Developers of the game. This further incited hope in the Community, and this hope and prosperity would come to describe “The Pinnacle.”
Age of Anarchy
Cheaters in SuperPower 2 were always an issue, but they were little and far in-between. However, with the help of some influential people, that was going to change. This is the story of Anarchist, the mastermind behind everything.
Before the Anarchy
> Early to mid 2016
Preceding his cheater period; Anarchist became infamous among the community, posting incomprehensible server reviews, critiquing prominent server hosts such as “Burnz”. Subsequently partaking in, and initiating flame wars in the Superpower 2 Steam forums.
Skill-wise, Anarchist was a decent Superpower 2 player, albeit prone to toxicity. Anarchist gained an interest in exploiting playing Roblox. Soon, his attention would shift from Roblox to Superpower 2.
Rise to Anarchy
> Late 2016 - mid 2017
Before cheating, Anarchist went around servers, discovering glitches that allowed him to mass dupe units, and get tons of cash, causing moderate amounts of chaos in servers. Most of these were discovered with the help of a friend, who assisted him in his server ruining trips.
One day, ZDisket, a friend of his, was navigating the superpower2.co.uk mod site, and discovered something interesting. On the “other” section, he found something named “SP2 Toolkit”, that claimed it was able to cheat in money and force others to accept trades, which in multiplayer would put other countries at their mercy. They were very excited at the prospect of such power, so they downloaded it and tried to test it out. Unfortunately for them, it was built for the old pre-Steam release, so the client.dll just made the game crash. However, they weren’t about to give up right then and there.
ZDisket, who had programming experience, decided to start work on his own version of this toolkit with the modern client SDK. Over time, the new program would keep getting more and more powerful with more destructive features, quickly surpassing the original toolkit.
This cheat program was eventually given the name “SP2X”. Early on, SP2X’s founder had decided to abandon and leave it to Anarchist to maintain the code.
As it became more powerful and its initial users became drunk with power, hacker panic started emerging, with one of the early complaints being made by Anarchist himself. As the cheat by then had the ability to switch countries to make others seem guilty, innocents were caught in the crossfire.
While Anarchist was spreading chaos with the cheats, he decided to frame someone ZDisket had a personal vendetta against, by using his name when destroying servers. This very unlucky person was named Ricoks. He would join servers with his name and proceed to grief them with SP2X, while also making forum threads about him. Many were initially convinced that Ricoks was the hacker. Many other unfortunate victims where framed. Anarchist frequently staged himself as people he had a vendetta against.
> Mid 2017 - early 2018
Imagine a modder, but instead puts his skills to malicious use.
As cheating became more and more widespread, and Anarchist’s fame was being cemented across the community, he decided to start commercializing the cheat under the SP2X label.
One person wielding SP2X’s power had been pretty effective already at terrorizing server hosts. Adding more users would amplify that.
$25 for a low-power version, to $60 and even $120 for its full potential. Even worse, Anarchist had found out how to ban evade and was also spreading the method to whoever bought the product. This allowed its users to be even more aggressive, as before they’d have to at least pretend to be a regular player in order to avoid getting banned; now, they razed everything on their way without worries, as they could undo any SP2 ban with a few clicks.
With the newfound boldness, SP2X got more powerful features that weren’t so subtle anymore, such as ability to switch players, making one able to chat as others, and even ban and kick when switched to the admin. It was at this time that infamous “cowboy raiders” started terrorizing servers in a new, unique way. Upon joining, they would immediately proceed to make everyone in the server spam lyrics for a sexually explicit song about homosexual cowboys, with its leader often giving himself the name “Grant MacDonald”. He even joined the SP2 Discord a few times.
It was at this time that the modding section of the community started taking the hacking threat seriously, with the first anti-cheat measure, named “Signed and Secure(S&S)” was invented by ZDisket. The sheer destructive power of the cheaters, led by Anarchist, brought forth a dark age for the SP2 community.
Eventually, Anarchist had all but disappeared from the community, and the cheaters relaxed a little, giving server hosts some much needed breathing room. However, as the community would soon find out, their fortune was eventually destined to end.
> Early 2018 - mid 2018
“The Enemy Of The Community”
Anarchist wasn’t just a skilled exploiter, he was also an excellent troll.
During March of 2018, the community soon found out that after a long break, Anarchist had came back to the community, with his comeback, something big was revealed.
It was hinted in previous attacks that there were “8 people” who would actively try to dismantle the community. All eight had SP2X. Soon, it was discovered that Anarchist wasn’t alone all along, rather that he was leading a council with eight members. Previously in hiding, the “Council of Eight” emerged from the shadows and became known to the community.
Thus began the first series of attacks on the community, the SP2 discord in particular. What had made the discord stand out, and why did they choose to attack it? Many had asked that question. Somehow, the council had managed to cause conflict between the two rival discords at that time, including a video (Hunter’s discord and Jesse’s discord) The specifics aren’t exactly known, but this event caused widespread panic, with many users accusing each other of “associating with the council”. A few weeks later, the Council made their next move, on the SP2 steam forums, they dumped over 100+ logged IPs. However, the post was then deleted for unknown reasons.This event didn’t cause much uproar in the community.
At this time, something big was being made. Anarchist and the council, facing time constraints which meant that they couldn’t grief servers all the time, were looking to solve this problem. In order to solve that issue, they started making something. Before then, all server griefing was done by humans in possession of SP2X, but now, the council started developing a way to fully automate server destruction in a way that it could run unattended. It didn’t matter where Anarchist or the other council members were, this specialized version of SP2X would automatically find and destroy servers ruthlessly and without instruction.
The early tests of this managed to amplify the hacker panic and bring it back to unprecedented heights, with servers being taken down left and right. This would later be revealed, nicknamed “TerrorAI”. Based from various accounts and this video, it selected and joined a server, changed its player name randomly (most likely from a database) to avoid being predicted and insta-banned, then made everyone in the server say randomly selected lines (again, most likely from a file) and shortly after that, banned everyone by first spoofing its ID as the admin; it even logged all of its actions to a file, as seen in the video.
During May and June of 2018, rumors had started circulating that the Council was testing and developing a botting program for discord.After the hysteria had died down, that is moment they attacked the discord.More than one hundred bots soon flooded into the discord and caused mayhem. At one point, it had gotten so bad that the owners of the discord had to disable the chat perms for all users, and it took them more then an hour to ban all the bots. This was the start of a series of attacks on the SP2 discord that would cause serious damage, however it seems like the attacks are finally over. There have been threats and possible warnings of a final attack, however these claims could not be verified.There were also rumors about how the Council had ‘infiltrated’ the SP2 discord staff team, these rumors lead to purges, and a new set of ‘moderators’, despite the rumors not being proven.
While the Council had many successes, its biggest enemy was internal strife. The Council had “Associates” (Essentially forced volunteers), and many became unhappy with management. A few even described the situation as a dictatorship. However, the Council would blackmail its members into submission. A problem arises with a continual influx of “Snowden's” (Leakers/Informants), at one point, even a c8 member (one of the eight) leaked information to the public. This caused immense paranoia inside the council. Even prominent members began blackmailing each other, which not only caused instability, but would ultimately lead to the collapse of the council. This video was the last that was heard from the council, presumably after the new management took over. Speculation arose that the restructuring of the group only kept them alive for another week, before they ultimately collapsed due to internal and external pressures.
As the Superpower 2 community had re-surged, and seen the developers resume communication with the general fan-base; patch 1.5.2 was released on the 13th of August 2018. The new patch included measures to curb cheating, which was long anticipated. Although garnering the best of intentions, the new anti-cheat measures proved ineffective.
A few weeks passed before reports of cheaters, plaguing the online servers of the game, surfaced once again. Furthermore, mods for the game had all become incompatible with the new version of the game. To maintain the integrity of the game, 1.5.2 checked for modified files, including the games executable. Therefore making modding difficult. Mod development went to a halt on some older projects.
One Year Anniversary
The SuperPower Discord was created on September 21st, 2017, making the server just over one-year-old. A lot of progress and development has taken place since the founding of the server originally. Now, almost every active server host, modder, influential player, and the Developers have joined the server. Server organization has improved, with efficiency and ease-of-use taking a priority. Stability, for the first time, has taken hold of the Discord Community. What used to be a server sometimes plagued by toxicity, is now a stable environment, where real discussion can take place. However, despite the gains and prosperity experienced by the modern-day Discord; there are still several major challenges faced by the Discord currently. A lot of progress has One of which is stagnation.
As the Discord eventually spread around over the course of one year, most of the active SuperPower 2 Community already joined the Discord server. As a result, growth rates has stalled; as a fourteen-year-old indie game only has so many players. As a result of this, Jesse introduced the “First Directive,” on September 22nd. The Directive seeks to boost growth rates by unifying all sectors of the Community; attempting to make a triangle of shared information with the SP2 Discord, the Steam Discussions, and the SuperPower Website. It also seeks to organize, and cleanse the Discord further in order to make it an environment that can attract other geopolitical enthusiasts, and hopefully continue to grow the Community, and game as whole. The results of this “First Directive” remain to be seen.
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