FableUnity, one of the largest and longest running social linkshells on Shiva, finally comes to an end on January 2, 2009. FableUnity (or "FU" as we lovingly called it) was created on June 10, 2005 during the Shiva migration to Midgarsormr. Hundreds of people left Shiva to try for a fresh start on a different server. FU was an experiment to show that you didn't need to leave home get a fresh start. Our goal was to help spread an underlying philosophy with a few simple principles at its core:
* You don't need to leave home to start anew
* Unless you learn to forgive yourself, you never really start over
* A linkshell is a choice, not a responsibility
* You get out of life what you put into it
* Life, like FableUnity, is what you make of it
FableUnity was home to players from levels 1-75, from multiple countries (NA, JP, and everything inbetween), from multiple HNMLS, all working together. We sponsored such well known events as the annual "Level 10 Dunes Alliance", "Best Death Contest", and other fun games that reminded us that we occasionally need to take a break from the grind and have fun. But the majority of our events were member-sponsored. As part of the "FU is what you make it" motto, we always encouraged members to set up and sponsor their own events to accomplish the goals they set for themselves.
We always promised that FableUnity probably wouldn't be like anything people experienced before. When new members were given a pearl, the sackholders gave out 1 gil and "the speech":
"We don't mind if you spend a lot of time here, or a little. We also don't care if you have multiple linkshells. Just promise to remember that we are not your other linkshells, nor will we ever be. Even if some of the people here are the same, we are not. We are simply FU."
What this meant was to keep past conceptions, problems, and issues FROM other linkshells IN those other linkshells. We asked that members leave their hatred for other people in those other linkshells; leave their hatred for other linkshells in those other linkshells. Only by coming in with an open mind and checking all that baggage at the door could people really get a fresh start here. As such, all we really ever asked was that our members refrain from advertising for or against other linkshells in our LS chat, and to keep personal arguments to /tell.
FableUnity wasn't for everyone; it took work to be successful here...but it was worth it. Success was never determined by rank or level; it was determined only by each player's will to succeed. Even though the FU shell was owned by Sophus, that didn't make him the leader; his role was closer to "head babysitter". In reality, it was the members of FableUnity who lead the shell and guided it. Our only limitation was the greatness of our members. By working hard, taking charge, and leading, FableUnity became exactly what its members wanted it to. Those who sat back and let things happen may have found FU to their distaste. But no matter how much they liked or disliked it, we were always simply FableUnity.
As a linkshell, FU allowed people to be who they were, and not be afraid to speak up. In fact, we actually encouraged people to be more active and to control their own destinies here. If they didn't like how something was, or if they didn't agree with something that was said, we urged them to give us their opinions. A big part of being in FableUnity was working to make us the type of linkshell that THEY wanted it to be.
Sure, it was frustrating when a sackholder didn't solve problems for members. In fact, it may have even seemed like they were being lazy...but they weren't. This linkshell was only what the members made of it, and so you couldn't expect others to fight your battles for you. Instead, the sackholders were there to help members reach their goals and solve their own problems, but we wouldn't do it FOR them. Everyone's success here was limited only by their willingness to succeed, and as such, everyone here was responsible for their own success--or failure.
In the end, FableUnity was never really a linkshell -- it was always an idea. All that we accomplished wasn't because we were FU; it was because we stood for something important. And you can never truly close the doors on something like that.
Edited, Jan 3rd 2009 9:29am by lawtechguy