After almost a decade, I don't know if this apology will mean anything to you guys, but I was reading through this Thread and it just tore me up seeing the extent of how much I upset everyone. My behavior back then was out of control, to the point where it was beyond childish. Reading the things I wrote, seeing the way I acted, appalling doesn't even begin to describe it...
I am sorry, truly, truly sorry.
After all this time, I feel I should clear up some things, you guys deserve an explanation, I can give you that much.
So, the elephant in the room. Champion of the Light is another sock puppet. Commissar Craig was the first user name I used when I joined the Online Community, so I suppose you could think it as the source. Nowadays, I just go by Craig, though I tend not to frequent Forums for any great length of time, for less than obvious reasons that I will attempt to answer.
As to "those who were banned from the same IP" only the following were sock puppets created by me.
- Lord Ark
- Lord Leo
- Lord Marke
- Lord Vincent
- Dr Christopher
As to why the IP kept changing, and why so many people were using the same IP Address, my ISP was AOL. Their dial-up was set up in such away that there could be many people using the same IP at any one time, and an even greater amount of people overall. Then when a new IP was issued, you would be paired up with a whole bunch of new people. At least that's how I've always thought that it worked, there's like a whole thing with dynamic and static IP's going on.
As for everyone else on that list, the other nine Users, to the best of my knowledge, they were legitimate Members who just happened to be AOL Users who by random chance were in my IP group. I feel really bad that they got banned because of me, and would say that you should unban them, though at eight years later, their probably not coming back... Which I am very sorry for.
I suppose there's the hacking thing. It originally started as a bad joke, and overall was a bad joke that went terribly wrong. It started off in an msn chat, I was talking to a German teenager, I think his name was Michael, he was the Admin of very small Vampire Counts Forum. I think we were friends, it's very difficult to remember the exact details that far back. Something happened to the Warvault, it looked like a bog standard server malfunction, which after the Warvault Admins investigation, was confirmed as such. I believe I told him that the Warvault had been hacked, and created a sock puppet to take the blame. Unfortunately for me, the Warvault, and several dozen other Forums, he took me completely serious. Of course, just as much of the vault lies heavily on my shoulders, had I been less careless, I could have sent Angron E-mail explaining what had happened, and the whole entire thing would have been resolved there and then. Instead I kind of just rolled with it as the drama unfolded...
In terms of my hacking capabilities, my knowledge of hacking begins and ends with what has been shown in films. Which is to say I know very little about it, and have never attempted it. Even after the Warvault revealed and confirmed that wasn't hacked, and that it was just a server issue, people kept attributing to me some kind of legendary hacker status. Almost all of it was spearheaded by that Vampire Counts Forum Admin, who was at the center of it all, I imagine that he would be great source of information on how things got as bad as they did.
My behavior and the sock puppeteering are closely connected, though I fear my explanation may get too convoluted, though I shall try to keep it simple.
I've seen a lot of people posting this, and using it to justify a lot of the weird and crazy shit that they, but in my case it is the honest truth.
I have Autism, or more accurately, I have Asperger’s Syndrome.
There are many different forms of Autism, and many different forms of Asperger’s Syndrome. You may have heard of "Little Professors" those with Autism who possessed a great gift or talent in Mathematics, Music, the Sciences? Well, I wasn't one of those. I was what was then classified as a "Little Philosopher" which would later be recognized as a "Little Dreamer", we're characterized as having extremely endless and vivid imaginations. We can build entire worlds within our minds, populating them with thousands of unique and interesting characters.
For some, that's enough, and they will become so invested in there worlds that they never want leave, and will quickly reach a point where they have given up on this reality, and are incapable of looking after themselves. Of the rest us that remain invested in this reality, a few go on to become extremely good fiction writers, most become okay fiction writers.
This is how my sock puppets ended up, but they didn't start off that way. My first instance of sock puppetry was one of extreme innocence. Someone had posted a Thread asking for help on the Games Workshop Forums (at least I think it was), and it was largely being ignored by everyone else. There were a couple of hot Topics everyone was Posting in, and ignoring pretty much everything else. This was my first Forum, and I was eager to help people. This particular person was desperate for suggestions, and when I gave my suggestion, they responded quickly, thanking me for the suggesting and lamenting how no one else had Posted... Yeah... Well, they soon got a few more, vaguely similar suggestions.
They say road to hell is paved with good intentions.
I can't remember the first Fan Forum that I joined, but I was playing Imperial Guard at the time, and Commissar Craig was my first and oldest User name. When I first joined an invisionfree Forum, it felt a lot less like I was a person that was joining a Community, and whole lot like I was filling out a Character Creation Sheet for a Roleplaying game. Commissar Craig was created in my mind as a mid 40's Veteran Commissar that had seen it all, and was still fighting the good fight. And I played him as such, which at first people found hilarious, but remaining true to a know-it-all character that is gruff and mean as an Imperial Commissar quickly lost all it's charm on people.
Since those days I'd created a lot of characters, and wrote a ton of backstory for each and every one of them.
Clan Venerable, was born from a custom built Skaven Clan of the same name, but eventually evolved into an illuminati-esque organization after I started noticing, and ultimate became interested in, secret orders, closed guilds, and similar from the shadows organizations from films and games.
Archdeacon - Hunchback of Notre Damn Character
Lord Ark - I really liked that Arkology episode from Andromeda
Lord Leo - Charmed Character
Lord Marke - Very meaningful name
Lord Vincent - Recess Character
Total-Defence - Runelord, a guardian character who selflessly shields others
Vengeance - Played host to a whole slew of character adaptation and development
Dr Christopher - I watched a lot of Scrubs, and really liked the name Christopher, his character borrowed heavily from Jack and Hurley from Lost
Not all sock puppets started off as such, some were created with the intention of being me, but eventually grew into their own unique characters. Dr Christopher was the last character I created, though he was more of a project than a character, one which was intended to heal and mend. After I killed off Commissar Craig, dissolved Clan Venerable, deleted all the text files, all the backstory, there was nothing keeping me fettered to the community any longer.
So, my behavior, it really was quite rotten, ironically, before I joined the Warhammer Community, I was actually a pretty nice person, sadly I joined the Warhammer Community during High School. It was a Special Needs school for special children. As it turns out, repeatedly telling a child that their special, that they can be anything and do anything, that their going soar, praising and rewarding the completion of simple tasks. Pride was my sin, and arrogance was my downfall, add to that the stubborn nature of Autism and the rebellious nature of a Teenager who refused to be handled any longer, and it was deadly mix. It took me a long time to unlearn the indoctrination of High School, and overcome the GodAmI nature of being a "Little Dreamer", but in the end I learned.
When I started to partake in Online Communal activities again, I mostly kept to Facebook where I could see my name and my face, and the name and face of everyone I'm talking to. It's was significantly easier to stay grounded that way, and especially now that my memory is failing me to the extent where Facebook has become more of a visual memory aid.
When I'm online these days, I see real people, not npc's, and I communicate in a very open and respectable manner. I traded in my arrogance for confidence and let empathy into my heart. In many ways I've never been more truer to myself, since the days before I joined the Warhammer Community more than a decade ago. Though I'm a lot wiser and more experienced than I was back then, I know that I still have a growing left to do, and as cheesy as it sounds, the journey never truly ends.
So that is pretty much the whole story, my soul laid bare, no great villainous master plan or never ending trolling spree. Just an average guy that stumbled off the path, and got lost in the deep dark woods, before eventually finding their way back to light.
Oh I also forgot to mention it above it's sort of, kind of important, but some people with autism have a life long obsession, like dinosaurs or rocks. I also have one, it's games, not any particular game, just games in general, like chess, Warhammer, football, rock, paper, scissors, eye spy. Really any kind of game, and when your mind is wired to find, play and create games, almost everything starts looking and feeling like a game. I used to be super competitive, and built a lot o power gaming lists. Nowadays I'm not very competitive, and tend to get more enjoyment from seeing other people win. I guess what I'm saying is that I've always had a playful nature, I'm just more aware of it and in control of it than before.
Once again, my apologies for upsetting all of you back then, on some level, I'm sure I never planned for things to turn out like they did, but I'm sorry that they did.