My intentions preceding the writing of this article - my final words to the Atlian community - were to embark on a scathing urge for change: a plea for reform. I envisioned arguing for the community’s efforts in the past few weeks, criticising the leadership’s dogmatism which has led to this, and campaigning for a renewed, different Atlas - sedition. I now realise how futile that would be. What would I be doing different from the countless others who have, in their own way, strived to make change happen? What could I do that would sway the Atlas server’s leadership better than easy_beans, than yodabird19, and the countless others disgruntled with the way in which things have shaped up?
No, this piece will not be an argument. The cycle of Atlas has been well-documented, and year-in and year-out, attempts to change the server have not disrupted this course. Instead, I have decided to follow my compatriot, yodabird19, in imparting a narrative.
Throughout the past year or so, I have invested a double-ton of hours doing what I love on the server of Atlas. At the same time, I have watched the months go by, with criticism and praise for the server almost equally rampant - an undulating but bearable hubbub. And yet, with each passing day, the cracks grew larger in my resolve, and the light of hope dimmer.
The months prior to Cortesia’s arrival on Atlas were torrid and taxing. In a search through a colourful sea of varying servers, none shone brighter than Atlas, and so we picked it. In a sense, Atlas held us together, as Yoda will tell you. With renewed hope, we settled here continuing in our pursuit to fulfil the dreams we hold dear: a developed, vibrant Cortesia surrounded by the core, inalienable principles of the Constitution.
In the beginning, Atlas served as an able canvas for Cortesia to paint its bright dawn. Where other canvasses had torn with a single firm stroke, Atlas held strong, welcoming us with its friendly, helpful community. There are many people which I will fondly remember, and even some who I hope will join us in our still-meandering journey forth. At times, our progress was slow: I sometimes left yodabird19 and BrickWallGaming alone in the brushstroke-by-brushstroke formation of our envisioned Cortesia. Sporadically, the canvas page would tear, but we’d simply make use of the next one.
In time, yodabird19 had mustered several paintings of his own, which he hung out proudly. These are the Atlian International Rail Project, the Atheran History Project, the Atheran Documentation Effort, and the Atlas Political and Economic Symposium for Hosting International Telecommunication. Through yoda’s efforts, Cortesia’s reputation grew as a nation with a strong voice; this idea was cemented once many of us joined the Atheran Times.
When the light of hope began to dim again, owing to poor motivation, BrickWallGaming added fuel to the fire. It re-ignited with a roar in the form of Frostmire, a project which transpired over a course of just a few weeks, but one that culminated with a town that we were proud of. But, simultaneously, the pages on the Atlas canvas began to run out as more and more tears surfaced. Was the paper flimsy at certain places? Regen moment. Was the build of the paper inherently weak? History resurfaces moment.
Last week, the canvas ran out, and the art was halted. Frostmire was demolished in an enormous explosion, and each building was flattened in a manner mirroring our diminishing hope. Frostmire was destroyed in the same way our hopes for Atlas were blown up when the reformation effort became futile.
Today, we will destroy the capital, a town shrouded in darkness. The light of hope that Atlas provided, the one we were attracted to like moths, has been dying for the last few months. The community urged the Elders to fuel the flames, to keep them strong, but the Elders insisted that the flames were as bullish as ever. Today, the light has been extinguished, abetted by the insistence that the dogmatism of the past weeks did nothing to expunge the flames. The ashes will remain as a reminder of lost hope and the ruins of Cortesia’s capital - our capital, my capital - will linger as evidence of lost potential.
It is such that the light is gone.
And, with it, so am I.