Rolt Heights War

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Rolt Heights War

RoltHeights-MiniMap.jpg

Date: 4th April 2007 to 30th April 2007
Place: Rolt Heights
Surrounding suburbs (used as bases and bounty hunting grounds).
Result: Draw

Combatants
Survivors x PKers

Groups
- Survivors : Burchell Arms Regulars, Metal Fox, Newgrounds, Rolt Heights Vigilante Patrol, M.P.D., Malton Marshals
- PKers : The PKer Alliance: Red Rum, Cybele's Slayers, Malton Mob, Pathetic Bill, Brotherhood of the Reckoning, Knights of the Temple of the Shrike, Rouge Heart Aces, Creedy Guerilla Raiders

Commanders
- Survivors : Jim Phil, JayDepps, Matt Guthrie, Maria Lombardi, Caleb Usher, Shotgun Ed, Others
- PKers : Karloth Vois, Torec Shadecrow, Mr Shadows, Pathetic Bill, D4rkness, Vigeous, Others

Strength
- Survivors : 20-30 (beginning) to 40-60 (end)
- PKers : 10-15 (beginning) to 30-50 (end)

Casualties
- Survivors : 336+
- PKers : 169+

The Rolt Heights War was a staged battle wherein the member groups of The PKer Alliance launched a protracted war against all survivor inhabitants within Rolt Heights in 2007. Due to the nature of the conflict, a majority of the initial survivor casualties were unsuspecting civilians who were occupying buildings; as the attack progressed most of the unaffiliated survivors chose either to flee the area of the conflict or willingly stayed to fight. On the other hand a majority of the PKer casualties took place in adjacent suburbs or, more often than not, at Treweeke Mall in Dulston. This was due to the fact that most of the PKers only remained within Rolt Heights long enough to kill survivors, before finding shelter and/or restocking in another suburb.

Timeline of Events

Early Stages

The attack on Rolt Heights came with little warning, as The PKer Alliance made no official declaration of war in the suburb news, but rather let their actions speak for themselves. It was noted that, as of April 4th, there was a significant increase in the number of PKer sightings, and local murders started escalating at a rapid pace over the following days.

The Burchell Arms Regulars (BAR), while adept at handling local PKers who occasionally caused trouble in the group's sphere of influence, was unprepared for the onslaught: the only large-scale threat the BAR normally dealt with was zombie hordes. It took over a week for the BAR to coordinate their efforts and begin effectively hunting the PKers, but by then they had suffered more than a few deaths among their members.

At the same time as the Rolt Heights War was ramping up, the BAR noted that several PKers had signed up on their forums to trade jabs and comments with them. Several notable PKers were among them, including Karloth Vois, Torec Shadecrow, and later Mr Shadows.

Troubles & Token Guards

While survivors across the suburb attempted to stave off PKer attacks, casualties mounted. Many of those survivors who had no interest in the conflict fled to adjacent suburbs to escape being targeted. This led to many buildings being left abandoned, a state of affairs which some feral zombies took advantage of during the war in order to break-in and ransack unopposed. The zombie threat was most prevalent in southwestern Rolt Heights where the Rolt Heights Vigilante Patrol fought for control with zombies over their claimed territory.

The Burchell Arms Regulars realized that the Burchell Arms (aka, 'The Burch') and any BAR members inside would become an obvious target. Even so, the BAR was unwilling to abandon their beloved pub and decided to make a point of always keeping a BAR Manager inside the Burchell Arms at all times in defiance of the PKers. This "token guard" would act as a willing sacrifice for any PKers gunning for the BAR while the rest of its members hunted the PKers from alternative safehouses in adjacent suburbs.

Megalesia Ends

On April 10th, Torec Shadecrow announced that her group's commitment to the Rolt Heights War had ended, as Cybele's Slayers had only participated in order to properly honor their goddess, Cybele, during Megalesia with human sacrifices in her name. With the holiday now over she officially withdrew her group's forces from Rolt Heights. Of course, Torec noted that not every member had heeded this call and that some had remained to assist the PKA until the end of the war.

Gangster Warfare

On April 14th, a veteran member of BAR killed Mr Shadows, leader of the Malton Mob. Then, in almost eerie succession, Mr Shadows was found and executed by the BAR several more times in the days that followed. When the executions made local news, the Don took offense, as this was an obvious sign of disrespect to him and his organization. The Malton Mob returned the favor on April 21st when they stormed the Burchell Arms and gunned down several BAR members in retaliation. The conflict between the BAR and the Malton Mob remained a constant throughout the later half of the Rolt Heights War, with banter traded daily on the BAR forums between both sides.

Wise to the Game

Over time, the sheer number of PKers in the area eventually drew the attention of bounty hunters from across Malton. In particular, the Malton Marshals and Dulston Alliance bounty hunters became more common throughout the area as they hunted the PKA members.

Initially, the PKer strategy of striking from adjacent suburbs had aided them in avoiding Rolt Heights survivor groups, but with so many survivors now searching, reporting, and hunting them it soon became harder for the members of the PKA to find shelter even when traveling further and further from Rolt Heights after each strike. One of the most dogged pursuers of these PKers was local survivor veteran Shotgun Ed, known as one of the more anti-PKer Friends of the Featherstone Library. Shotgun Ed had made it his personal mission to track and report any PKers hiding in Pescodside, Dulston, and Dunningwood. Those reports in turn led to a sharp increase in the number of PKer executions at the hands of the BAR who used the information to hunt more efficiently.

A Farewell to Arms

On April 30th, the last reported PKA kill was recorded, and on May 2nd, local news reported that the Rolt Heights War had officially ended. Of course, as with any conflict, just because the groups' various leaders had called off the war did not mean the fighting stopped altogether. In several cases PKers, particularly those from Red Rum, stayed in the area and continued to stir up trouble for locals, but not just those in Rolt Heights.

In an interesting twist, two of the PKers who had originally joined the BAR's forum in order to taunt them ended up sending survivor alts over to join the BAR. The BAR's carefree and fun-loving lifestyle made a favorable impression on most pub visitors. This included respectful "hat tipping" for a game well played from both respective sides, and as such, even the Malton Mob decided to forgo their grudge match with the BAR and head back to their own turf.

Analysis

A number of factors explain why Rolt Heights managed to remain populated and not become a ghost town, while at the same time explaining the effectiveness of PKer tactics in the war. Below are a number of possible reasons from numerical to tactical to incidental.

  • The conflict ended in a draw, as both sides maintained that they successfully completed their objectives. The PKA's goal was to rack up an impressive kill tally, and as they killed over 300 survivors and were executed fewer times than this total it seems clear that this goal was accomplished. For the survivors of Rolt Heights their stubborn refusal to abandon the suburb, even under the PKA's intense assault, was their own benchmark in the conflict.
  • It is possible that from the very beginning, there was no "win" scenario for either survivors or PKers, short of the complete and utter decimation of the opposing side, an act hard to contemplate given the rate of revival. As such, both sides ended up walking away with a decent amount of respect for the groups involved and proud that they had accomplished their objectives.

Outcome for Specific Groups

  • The Knight Watchmen - As noted, the Burchell Arms Regulars (BAR) were not suited to dealing with PKers. Only a fifth (10-13 members) of the group actively participated in hunting PKers. After the conflict, though, rather than return to solely hunting zombies and only punishing local PKers, the BAR expanded its duties to include hunting PKers. A new team, the Knight Watchmen were formed in order to distance the rest of the BAR from undesired PKer activity. The team has since expanded to become an alliance, not of groups, but rather of "bounty hunter"-minded survivors from various local survivor groups such as Metal Fox, the Dribbling Beavers, and the Friends of the Featherstone Library. It is believed that the Rolt Heights War was the sole catalyst for this strong anti-PKer response by the formerly anti-zombie group.
  • Rogues Gallery - As with any PKer conflict, survivors are killed and bounties placed on the heads of those who do the killing. In the case of the Burchell Arms Regulars (BAR) the group was unfamiliar with the RG and as such it was not long before some of their members had bounties placed on their heads for killing "innocent" survivors. This in turn led to a common anti-RG sentiment throughout the BAR. On the flip side, knowledge of the RG and reports against PKers increased among those who, in some cases for the first time, realized the tool's purpose.

Groups Involved in the Siege

The following is a list of groups known to have participated. Note that many groups were only partially present, but sent whatever contingents, strike teams, SWAT teams, scouts etc. they could.

PKer Groups

While a majority of the PKers active throughout the conflict were associated with the PKer Alliance, there were likely undocumented freelance PKer attacks as well which may have aided in depopulating the suburb. A list of the known PKer Alliance groups who participated in the war are:

Survivor Groups

There were also unaffiliated survivors and wandering/freelance bounty hunters who took part in the war. Whether their goals were, to protect Rolt Heights or simply kill PKers, is unknown. A list of all the known survivor groups that took part in the war:

Rolt Heights Resident Groups

Groups from Local Suburbs

Distributed, Mobile, or Groups from Further Away



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