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CHAPTER FIVE – IT HAS TO BE A GLITCH, DOESN’T IT?
Liam slowly opened his eyes just a little before immediately closing them again. It was an action that he would repeat a couple of times before actually keeping them open. He lay there, on his stomach with his head on it’s side and facing the centre of the bedroom, for a while. His hands were underneath his head – palms downwards – and his elbows were sticking out to the sides. It was a sleeping position which some would describe as ‘the contented free fall position’. But the fact that his duvet was half on him and half off, suggested that whilst perhaps content now he had in fact had a fairly unsettled sleep. But then Nicola was away at the moment and having gotten used to sharing a bed with her he never quite slept the same when she wasn’t there.
He looked at the time. It was much later than he would normally have woken. But then last night had seen a very long session playing tanks with the lads.
It had been a really good night. He had deliberately joined up with Abood (VotiveTomb14) and one of his other mates. Abood was one of the clan members who still played on the 360 and not the Xbox One. And whilst Liam really enjoyed joining up and tanking with Abood, the fact that they were on different console types often caused problems with this. As a clan member Abood was very much valued as he certainly lived up to the meaning of his name – Devoted and Obedient.
Sully and Kevin and Daffodil (the nickname they used for a fellow clan member who’s Gamer Tag was kingofdaanthill.) had also platooned up with them. And later NinjaFish senior had also joined them. It had been a great evening all round, with lots of banter and lots of fun or ‘craic’ as Sully, Liam and Kevin called it. Which no doubt explained why it had been such a long session. “Sure, I’ll just have a bit more sleep.” Liam thought to himself. And with that he closed his eyes once more.
His attempts to do so however were broken by the sound of his mobile phone notifying him that a message had come through on Facebook Messenger. Reaching out he picked it up his phone, entered the digits for the code to unlock it, and clicked on the notification. In response the phone navigated it’s way to Facebook Messenger and to the CELTS Admin Chat group. The message was from Kevin.
“Hi all.” It read. “I have been thinking. Since we are getting more serious about team training and competitions etc, would it be a good idea if we as the clan’s senior officers got together for our own training sessions? That way we could work on communication skills, plan training events, get to know each other’s game play and communication styles etc. Is everyone free tonight around 10 GMT? I’ll make a room.”
Liam thought about it for a moment. He liked the idea but thought he would wait to see how everyone else responded before commenting. It was short notice so even if folk thought it was a good idea they might not all be able to make it. To encourage a positive response from the others without his leading the conversation in any one direction Liam sent a simple thumbs up message.
The text conversation that followed was encouraging and everyone responded positively to the idea. Although, as usual getting everyone’s response – due to different localities and time zones etc – took a fair while. During these often long gaps between responses Liam couldn’t help but reflect upon how much more active and more consolidated the clan seemed to be becoming.
In truth there had been some teething problems along the way, and indeed even now there was still some challenges to be faced. But some of those were down to the fact that the clan was made up of players on both the Xbox 360 and the Xbox One. And as most Xbox players knew that presented several cross console limitations. But none of them were completely insurmountable and to the clan every member was important.
Another regular feature of the long gaps whilst waiting for someone specific to respond was how the topic of conversation often digressed from it’s original theme. One of these digressions on this occasion being the way in which the game had been messing up of late.
It was a subject that was hotly discussed on the forums and in game chat. With players being convinced that all sorts of things were going on. Longer battle queue times here and there, crazy match making, tanks which normally played or shot one way suddenly seemingly playing or shooting another way and then – in the next game – playing and shooting the way they used to before. Even maps seemingly being slightly altered without any notifications or announcements.
Such observations and comments were of course met with a number or different responses. Some were met with understanding and agreement whilst others were met with scepticism and even derision. But that all too often spoke more about the nature of tankers than it did about the validity of the observations being put forth.
Perhaps the most vocal and passionately expressed observation of this nature during this particular text conversation was Liam’s somewhat colourful account of how he had been killed during a slug-fest in a battle he and Sully and Kevin were playing last night, purely because his tank had suddenly and inexplicably locked on to one of his own team mate’s tanks instead of the enemy’s.
Thankfully however, as passionate as Liam’s present retelling of the story was, it was nothing compared to his reactions when it had actually happened. As Sully and Kevin could both confirm. Although they could not, of course, actually confirm that Liam’s tank had locked on to an allied tank by mistake.
“I’m telling you it actually happened.” Liam complained. “Not content with my being a magnet for those damn clickers (the name non-affectionately assigned to artillery players) now even the damn game is out to get me.”
“Maybe someone was using a cheat?” one of the other’s suggested.
“Or perhaps you were hacked?” Another volunteered.
Kevin decided not to offer a comment, as the temptation to repeat the same statement of “Well, at least you aren’t obsessing about it.” which he had made at the time it happened and in the midst of Liam’s extreme frustration induced rant, might not go down too well
“I am telling you,” Liam continued his text based complaint. “Either the game is out to get me or something screwy is going on.”
“It’s a glitch Liam,” Santos suggested. “It has to be a glitch, doesn’t it?”
It was a suggestion which did carry some logic. For if it wasn’t hackers or even cheats being employed by the enemy player, then either it was a a simple glitch or Liam was right and the game had suddenly decided to do it just to get at Liam.
Fortunately the last response came in concerning the team training and the focus of the conversation returned to it’s original topic. Aaron had been doing other things and had only just been able to read through the conversation and to respond. “Sorry, really busy here.” Aaron had texted. “But I’m up for it and really like the idea. See you this evening.”
It was confirmed then. They would all meet up that evening for team training.
Liam sent another thumbs up sticker and returned to his previous focus of closing his eyes and getting more sleep. As he lay there trying to doze off one more his thoughts returned to how the clan was developing.
It had to be said that out of the 555 WOT™ clans currently registered on the Xbox the Celts, it could be argued, was without doubt one of the best. Perhaps not in terms of skill, but certainly in a general sense and taking into consideration, skill, game play, social interaction, fun and additional facilities such as their Facebook page and website.
And actually this was the argument which would later be put forward but in a whole different setting.