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  1. NationStates News

    NationStates: Z-Day 7

    This is the end. The more robust zombies outlasted their predecessors, and at the end of the day outnumbered the living. Some regions, however, were safer than others. Kudos to the dozens of regions which completely eliminated the infection while retaining hundreds of billions to trillions of survivors, to the several which sheltered hundreds of billions to trillions without closing their borders, and to the many regions with similar numbers of survivors. The full leaderboard is available for your perusal. So long, and thanks for all the brains! View the full article
  2. NationStates News

    NationStates: Z-Day 7

    We can now say with confidence that the undead menace has arrived. Despite all signs having been to the contrary, we now know there are zombies in every nation. Whether because zombies are slow moving or because of someone's tardiness, not all nations were aware of zombies at the same time. Nations exploring their options before the appearance of zombies would have been unable to elect to build a zombie empire, and any selection they made before the appearance of the stumbling dead within their borders has been reset. If you wish to cure or exterminate your zombies, double check that your selection is active! Further information will be provided as we can. Update: The parable of the zombie and the hare comes to mind. View the full article
  3. NationStates News

    NationStates: Z-Day 7

    We can now say with confidence that the undead menace has arrived. Despite all signs having been to the contrary, we now know there are zombies in every nation. Whether because zombies are slow moving or because of someone's tardiness, not all nations were aware of zombies at the same time. Nations exploring their options before the appearance of zombies would have been unable to elect to build a zombie empire, and any selection they made before the appearance of the stumbling dead within their borders has been reset. If you wish to cure or exterminate your zombies, double check that your selection is active! Further information will be provided as we can. View the full article
  4. NationStates News

    NationStates: Z-Day 7

    This is the secret WASP office of, well, zombie preparedness. The backup one. Here's the latest research from the latest researchers. First, there's more good news! The lightly-gnawed upon notes of Professor Brooks indicate that with minor adjustments, your anti-zombie superweapons can be re-targeted to remove undead saboteurs from infiltrated command and control structures. This will restore the nation to its previous stance. Your allies and friends will be able to help you. You do have allies and friends, don't you? Unfortunately, there is also bad news. Don't ask us how we know, but it's clear that strains of undead have developed which handle the absence of survivors better. They just don't die- Err.. They don't "de-animate", at least not as quickly. So if you're looking forward to the zombie problem just going away on its own... Sorry? View the full article
  5. NationStates News

    NationStates: Z-Day 7

    World Leaders, resistance cells, and diplomats: the secret WASP office of pseudoanimate preparedness has good news and bad news. First, the good news. There are hours, nay, days before the world as we know it falls apart due to rising demand for and shrinking supply of brains. Also, some of our researchers have survived! Their consensus recommendation of what you need to be empowered to handle this shambling business is intelligence, intelligence, intelligence. The intern who was the most experienced survivor was quite insistent on this. Without intelligence, even the smartest decision will be brainless! In other words, as the intern put it, "Braaaains!" As the surviving researchers head home, the administrative staff here are hard at work on solutions to bring you more adequate intelligence. What is the bad news, you ask? Well, that's a very good question. It will be addressed just as soon as we answer this scrabbling at our doors. Can't keep people waiting! In the meanwhile, enjoy this helpful clock: Zombie apocalypse begins in: We're not sure of much, but we're sure of this countdown! Our staff expects that once that clock reaches zero, vigilant regions will begin to close their borders and see a daring group of nations attempt to research a cure, while less vigilant regions will be overrun by shambling nightmares. In due course, 75-80% of the world population will die. No biggie. Our staff are still examining notes from the office of pseudoanimatae preparedness to understand any new mutations or developments you need to know about. What You Need to Know The zombie apocalypse will begin @@JGConfig::time_ago(1540929600, 1)@@ (click for local time) It will run for 33 hours, ending @@JGConfig::time_ago(1540929600+ (33 * 3600), 1)@@ Zombies move between nations in the same region. This makes it important to be aware of what your neighbors are doing, as will be difficult for an individual nation to hold out in a heavily infected region. Each region will report its infection rate so that residents can make an informed choice about which are relatively safe and which are basically pools of pandemic-level z-virus. You have three options: Exterminate the zombies with military force. This converts them into dead citizens, who pose no further risk to the living. It is very effective when you have lots of survivors and few zombies, and less effective when your military forces have mostly been eaten. Research a cure, which helps to lower your region's infection rate. Enough nations working together can slow or stop the spread of zombies and even begin to turn infected back into survivors. However, this takes time and is most effective with test subjects and collaboration. Embrace the zombie hordes, becoming part of the problem as you spread zombies all around your region. Eventually, of course, your hordes may run out of food and starve. This option isn't for everyone. But there's always someone. Your nation may also unlock superweapons over time. Once built, they can be manually deployed against targets of your choice by visiting their nation page and hitting the appropriate button. Exterminating zombies develops Tactical Zombie Elimination Squads, who can enter other nations and kill zombies there. Researching a cure develops Cure Missiles, which can be launched at other nations in order to convert zombies into survivors. Embracing the undead develops Hordes, which can surge into other nations and infect their survivors. Superweapons can be deployed every 20 seconds. If you take a hit from a superweapon, the resulting chaos makes your own superweapon unavailable for a few minutes. When looking for targets, the World Censuses helpfully provided by the WA administrative complex may be of use: The Most Survivors The Most Zombies The Most Dead The Most Zombified (%) Note: while the number displayed for each nation should always be accurate, the ordering of nations by each census will be updated periodically, not live. During Z-Day, Founders and Delegates can close their region's borders at no Influence cost, sealing themselves off the from the world, and the plaintative cries of nations seeking refuge. It seems pretty harsh. You're just sitting there watching millions of people die. But zombie apocalypses demand tough choices. The Z-Day Tally Board will track progress during Z-Day. Good luck! View the full article
  6. NationStates News

    NationStates: N-Day 3

    That concludes our third annual N-Day! Please hand in your nuclear launch capabilities to the steward. Final Leaderboard Reigning N-Day champions Augustin Alliance were a hot target early on, literally. More like RAINING HOT NUCLEAR FIRE champions, you might say. That left the path clear for N-Day2 runners-up UPPERCUT to deliver a knockout blow! And it really was a nuclear blowout, with the new champs winning by over 100,000 points. Thank you for participating in N-Day3! And remember: nuclear exchanges are much more fun when they're simulated. More stats to come! This post will be updated shortly. View the full article
  7. NationStates News

    NationStates: N-Day 3

    You know the terrifying thing about nuclear war. It can happen without any warning. Nuclear apocalypse begins in: Click/tap here for your local time: @@JGConfig::time_ago(1537995600)@@ That's why we give you a heads-up before a nuclear apocalypse. It's just more friendly. N-Day3 will run for 24 hours, after which time no further nuclear launches will be accepted. Here's a handy primer! @@JGConfig::parse_nscode("https://www.nationstates.net/page=dispatch/id=874170", 2)@@ As usual, if you don't wish to participate in an unforgiving all-out nuclear exchange, you can simply ignore it. Nations can only be nuked out of existence once they join a Faction (and even then, only for the duration of N-Day). All Factions from previous N-Days will be wiped shortly before the start of N-Day3, so you will need to recreate/rejoin them. You are permitted to use multiple nations, but the more you use, the more annoying the anti-bot checks will become. Good luck! View the full article
  8. NationStates News

    NationStates: Updated Privacy Policy

    Now for the news you've really been waiting for: We've updated our Privacy Policy! Like all the cool kids nowadays, we're taking steps to purge old data we don't really need, be more transparent about the data we collect, and allow you to remove personal information you don't want us to have any more. See here for more! View the full article
  9. NationStates News

    NationStates: Issue 1K

    I don't want to blow your mind but we just added Issue number ONE FREAKING THOUSAND. That's right: Your nation may now encounter any of 1,000* different dilemmas that ask you to make an ideological choice between a set of flawed options. * Actually 1,001, since the first issue is #0. I'll be honest with you: I didn't see this coming. After I wrote the first 31, I thought that was plenty. "That's all the major topics covered, Max," I told myself. "You nailed it." The fact that we now have an additional 970 issues is because an often-changing team of volunteer authors and editors decided there were actually more areas to explore, and attacked them with tireless good humor and ingenuity. Hundreds of different people have written or edited an issue, and over two dozen are in the double digits for issue contributions. It's impossible to thank anyone in particular without ignoring someone else who equally deserves it, but I do want to acknowledge three people in particular who we couldn't have reached this milestone without: @@JGConfig::nice_name("Sirocco", 2)@@, who was the editing team in the early days, @@JGConfig::nice_name("Sedgistan", 2)@@, who remodeled and championed it as a professional organization, and @@JGConfig::nice_name("Candlewhisper Archive", 2)@@, who runs it today. Thank you to everyone who contributed an issue, even if you submitted an issue that didn't quite make the cut. And if you've simply enjoyed the end result of what the editing team produces, thank you for that! Authors and editors need readers, too. P.S. Cards are still coming. View the full article
  10. NationStates News

    NationStates: Another Card Trading Update

    Okay! Obviously card trading was supposed to reopen by now. I did slightly overestimate how much card-based work it was possible to accomplish in one week, following two other weeks that were also full of card-based work. Thanks to those of you patiently waiting. We're still a little way off being ready to re-open trading, but this post is to share current thinking about the plan. Confirmed/definitely intended features include: One loot box per nation every 48 hours Greatly reduced likelihood of drawing the card of a nation from the same region Direct trading of cards between nations Greater snipability of low-value transactions (discussion below) No ex-nation cards in loot boxes When a nation ceases to exist, its deck will also cease to exist (after a period of time) Deck size limited but expandable by spending bank The ability to group cards together in "Collections" for display purposes A browsable global marketplace A range of upgrades to the interface and underlying mechanics There are also some more ambitious longer-term ideas, but one step at a time. Some of the above will be live from when we re-open trading and others will come in as development time allows over future months. All About Puppets The trickiest question has been how to handle puppet farming. This is when a player controls many nations and uses them to collect cards and funnel good ones to their "main." I actually think the first part is fine: It doesn't matter if someone wants to use multiple nations to build multiple decks. It's the second part, where they sell good cards to their main for next to nothing, that threatens to become corrosive over time, because in that case, it's less like the person is building multiple decks, and more like they're building one deck by earning cards at a faster rate than everyone else. That's problematic in a trading game where your position is impacted by others' holdings. For mini-games like this, it's often suggested that we limit it to World Assembly nations, where a one-nation-each rule is enforced. But many people have good reasons for not wanting to join the WA, which shouldn't exclude them from other parts of NationStates. The real challenge is to discourage puppet farming without unduly interfering with real communities exchanging cards amongst themselves. Because an important part of the fun of deck building, I think, is that you can offer special deals or gifts to people you know. We could eliminate puppet farming by forcing all trades to be conducted at current market prices, but this would also eliminate elements of trust, friendship, and co-operation, leaving us with a more economically fair but less interesting game. Essentially: You should be able to offer a good card for cheap or even free to someone you know, because that's how communities work. But puppet farms should not easily stream their cards to a single owner. To deliver this, we're doing two things. Firstly, direct trading will allow you to nominate a particular nation to exchange with (or gift to), with a bank fee involved. This makes it accessible for most nations, but less viable for puppets, who don't normally accumulate much bank, and will be disproportionately affected since they want to gift every good card they find. Secondly, to create a window of time that allows sniping of open market-based transactions, to reduce the ability to "sell" a valuable card for nothing to yourself. That's it for now, and thanks again for your patience! Got feedback? Forum: Discussion thread! View the full article
  11. NationStates News

    NationStates: Trading Halt

    Each year, my primary goal for the April Fools event is to create something that will not make people go, "Well, that was disappointing." It's also nice if we can explore community dynamics or encourage people to explore their own morality or whatever, but most of all I want to not spend a lot of time building something that sucks. Often it's hard to tell whether we've achieved that goal. But this year we did! A lot of people had a lot of fun with it, including me. And there were plenty of interesting stories and dramas and different people and communities reacted to the cards in different ways. I'm glad I decided to make the cards pointless. At first, I was thinking they would be part of some kind of point-scoring game, where you would want to collect particular cards because they did something. But it was actually much better as an undefined, nebulous thing, much like NationStates itself, where people developed and pursued their own goals. But we do like stats here! So I have some of those anyway: * * * Deck Stats * * * As per the previous news post, cards trading will remain frozen for the next week, and there will be a future announcement on how they will work as a permanent site feature. And that's another April! Phew. Thanks for being a part of it, and of NationStates in general. It's always deeply rewarding to me to throw out something simple and watch people evolve and adapt it in unexpected ways, and that's been this place for more than 15 years now. It's awesome. Thank you. View the full article
  12. NationStates News

    NationStates: Trading Cards Update

    Trading is almost over! So far, three million cards have been found, 1.7 million cards are in circulation, and nations have made 150,000 trades. But it can't go on forever! Card trading ends in: At this time: Loot boxes will cease to be available Cards will no longer be able to be bought, sold, or junked Your cards and decks will remain visible. We'll also post some stats and links to interesting decks. This has been a particularly fun event and many people have asked whether the cards can stick around. The answer is: Yes! In some form. What we'll do is have a week where all trading and looting will remain frozen, to give everyone a chance to eat/sleep/reconnect with loved ones/reflect on their life choices, and us a chance to figure out some details about how it should work. Then we'll re-open in retooled form, with a much lower card generation rate (perhaps one loot box per day) and a few changes aimed at making this a more permanent but less frenzied part of the NationStates experience. View the full article
  13. NationStates News

    NationStates: NationStates Trading Cards!

    Here at NationStates Industries, we're always striving to keep up-to-date with the latest trends and technologies. As such, we're excited to announce a deck of trading cards made up of NationStates nations! You can begin collecting right now, using our advanced Loot Box Technology, which combines all the thrills and neurological reward systems you love of gambling with a clever new twist, where you don't pay real money! Trade cards on the open market to get the ones you want. Or junk them for a small amount of bank, which you can spend on opening loot boxes faster in a deliciously cyclical dopamine adventure of psychological addiction! Some people may ask what the point is of collecting these cards. Those people sound like losers who own no cards. Maybe you want to collect a full region. Maybe you want to drive up the value of your own card. Maybe you want to fill the gaping void in your life with some kind of meaning, even if it's virtual card-based. I don't know. But I do know we have sweet cards! Available Only for the First Week of April 2018! How to Build a NationStates Deck Open Loot Boxes These unlock automatically over time. Keep checking your Deck page. Keep, Junk, or Sell your cards Tap the top flag area on a card to reveal options: Junk, Sell, or Buy. Junk a card to instantly earn a small amount of bank, which can be used to purchase cards you want from other players, or to open more loot boxes faster. Keep the card or sell it on the open market! View the full article
  14. NationStates News

    NationStates: Whole Bunch O Betas

    Several changes to World Census scales came out of beta today and are going live as I write this, so if you're wondering why some of your numbers look different, that's why! Beta 002B affecting Scientific Advancement and Primitiveness Beta 003 affecting Workforce Participation Beta 007 affecting Corruption and Integrity Beta 009 affecting Authoritarianism Beta 011 which introduces Average Disposable Income Beta 013 affecting a minority of nations across a variety of scales View the full article
  15. As mentioned, the World Census people have been fooling around with numbers and models lately. Some nations were surprised to discover that they've plunged in Recreational Drug Use. To explain why, here is Senior Issue Editor and policy wonk Candlewhisper Archive... Before the change, nations who added chemicals to their water supply, such as synthetic EDTA, poison, or neurostimulants, would receive an inappropriate huge boost to Recreational Drug Use. This was sub-optimal because the ranking is meant to track the fondness of citizens for recreational drugs, not the level of chemicals in their bloodstream. Because we hadn't separated those two things before, one step in correcting the problem was to flip across nations we had erroneously labelled as "compulsory drug use" onto an equivalent mirror score. This allows us to accurately measure the degree of freedom citizens enjoy with regard to recreational drugs, so that any legislation you pass in the future will move your ranking accordingly. Unfortunately, the correction meant translating some nations from a very high score (maximum mandatory drug use) to a very low one (maximum restriction on drugs). The worst thing is that the "No Drugs" policy may even appear as a result of this new stat position! But this will disappear as soon as you make even a single pro-drug decision. This is a messy fix in the short term, and no doubt something of a shock for those that were riding high thanks to an exploit they were probably unaware of, as well as a pleasant surprise to those that find their position is improved. Change can be shocking sometimes, but we're aiming to keep improving the simulation, and more changes will be around the corner. Keep an eye on the Beta page for more incoming shifts! View the full article