Editorial: Why Can’t We Just Have Wars For Fun?

ALASKA, CP Army Hub Headquarters, Sophie’s Desk – War. It’s a core and inescapable element of Club Penguin armies. Undeniably, our community thrives off of the fighting and battling that occurs from day to day. It’s why we have a league, judges, land, alliances, and why armies spend hours recruiting troops and training them. However, the nature of our battles has changed, and as we stand here today in 2020, many of us feel compelled to think: Why can’t we have wars for fun?

Disclaimer: The following post is an editorial and contains the writer’s personal opinion. It does not represent the views of the CP Army Hub as a whole.

At the time of this post, the war between the Water Vikings and the Special Weapons and Tactics continues on. We, as a community, have seen firsthand the toxicity that this war imposes on us. The constant backhanded insults, the rage against anyone and everyone who dares support the opposing side, and most importantly, the frequent outcries of “I should have won that battle.” All of this is all apparent should you take a step into the CP Army Hub Discord server (or, better yet, the leaders chat). It seems as if this is no longer a game but a livelihood for the people involved. This phenomenon has escalated to the point where the judges actively avoid accepting battles out of fear of being harassed, questioned, and possibly stripped of their judging rights.

There is no doubt that this war is toxic. And perhaps the reason for that toxicity is because we feel compelled to justify invading other armies. This need for morality is a byproduct of the excessive politicization that we have subjected to this community. As LuciferStar has detailed in his philosophical editorial, we have taken this game and turned it into a form of politics. We have developed our own “Just War Theory.”

Just War Theory; taken from LuciferStar’s editorial

If we observe all of the recent wars, we see a common trend. A post. A declaration of war. A list of reasons why in this war, the declaring party is playing the good guy. In the Water Vikings post declaring war on SWAT, they justified their invasions with the fact that SWAT has taken land that is rightfully theirs, spoken poorly about the Water Vikings, and troop stolen from them. In previous wars, such as the Army of Club Penguin’s crusade against the Templars, or the Black Ice Alliance’s war on the S/M army community, the declaring army would inevitably give reasons and justifications for their invasions.

“It was because they were homophobic and racist.” “It was because they’re allies with a toxic army who promotes pedophilia.” 

WV’s declaration of war against SWAT

But what happened to having wars for fun?

I do not mean to suggest that the above aren’t valid reasons for declaring war. However, I cannot help but wonder why we no longer have a war for the sake of having a war—a war where armies invade each others’ servers but also respect the judges and the opposition. In the Clover Crusade, many people stepped out to say that the Army of CP only declared war against the Templars in a blatant land grab, not because they cared about racism or homophobia in the community. But hearing those statements prompted me to think — without debating the truthfulness of their words, what is wrong with declaring war for, as community members have phrased it, land grabs? Why can’t we declare war for fun?

Community members calling the Army of CP’s crusade against the Templars a “land grab”

This community was created for armies to battle, for land to be invaded and taken back. Yet somewhere along the way, we brought politics, morality, and our own “Just War Theory” into this. And it’s quite ironic that our need for justification comes at the expense of the other side — to be seen as the good guy, the declaring army needs to pull a so-called exposé, slandering and accusing the defending army of crimes that will give them a reason to invade. Following this is tension, anger, frustration, and, at the very end, toxicity. To appear moral, we have created something immoral. Oh, the irony.

In this community, is there truly such a thing as absolute right or wrong? The invading army may portray itself as a hero against the wrongful deeds of the defending army. The army may present itself to be serving justice, to be avenging the weak. However, are armies serving justice when they invade the defending army and take their servers? Is that what justice is, or is justice merely a made-up concept?

Long ago, Americans justified their imperialism with “Manifest Destiny.” Is the same thing happening now, or is justice a genuine concept that needs armies to carry out?

Life is not as simple as picking a good guy and a villain. In war, is anyone ever wholeheartedly correct? After all, nothing is black and white; more often than not, armies are stuck within a grayscale. So that begs the question: if the concept of justice is unreliable, and more often than not, armies are never entirely right or wrong, what becomes of our obsession with being moral? Why must we become moral to declare war? Does that kind of morality even exist when this is a game intended for battle? I’ll leave those questions for you to answer.

In the end, it’s not to say we shouldn’t have regulations, rules, and a bit of righteousness, lest we descend into chaos. Perhaps removing the need to appear just would lead to a war where both sides can shake hands after the fight. After all, in war, there is no light, no dark, no right, no wrong — only victory and defeat. Isn’t it better for armies to approach each other on the battlefield without the toxicity of trying to appear on the higher moral ground? When armies attempt to paint themselves white and their opposition black, all that results is contempt for each other. With contempt comes a toxic war and possibly an era of grudges. By getting rid of the need to be righteous, we can have more enjoyable conflicts where both armies can walk away in good spirits, not anger and disdain. Is it not better to face each other without the wheelchair tactics, without the ensuing fights afterward, without breaking off inter-army friendships, without hating someone purely because they’re from a rivaling army?

That is not to say we can ever be free from toxicity in this community. There is bound to be the sore losers and the ones who can’t see beyond the fact that this a game and land is meant to be lost and regained. Unfortunately, our obsession with appearing righteous is worsening the problem. Morality may be valid in the real world. The inherent idea that one must be morally justified to invade an army is, unfortunately, strangling this game and this community to death.

What do YOU think? Let us know YOUR thoughts in the comments below!

Sophie

CP Army Hub Reporter

2 Responses

  1. Amazing post Sophie!
    This made me think about how WV and SWAT’s war at least has had no “exposing” done to have their enemy pushed out of the league. That happened quite often *wary*

    Like

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