umm… history of 1337. I hope you are ready for a massive wall of text.
Back in 2012, right after the Mayan calendar ended, a little game appeared on the front page of Kongregate called Contract Wars. Curious, me and many others gave it a shot, only to find it was.. pretty much the best damn browser game we had ever played.
I remember being ~level 20 and really wanting the Saiga. I was dying for a rapid-fire shotgun, and I could see it in the set and I KNEW it had to be the Saiga… I was tempted to spend money on GP just to unlock the damn thing early! My suspicions were confirmed when I saw it in-game for the first time, used by Skullhead51. That was one of the players who stood out to me. But nobody could forget LancerEvolutionX, the crazy player who was #1 on the leaderboards for the longest time. He would run around with his Kedr and Mp5K and other such weapons. He figured out how to get exp fast before anyone else did.
And farming. Oh yes. Before the clan system even came out, we had already formed a little bit of a clan. Everyone became friends with, and rallied around LancerEvolutionX, whoh was a fun guy and pretty skilled as well. As it turns out, he also lives about a half hour drive away from me, but for whatever reason we still have not met up in real life. We hung out in his private Kongregate chatroom a fair amount. And farmed some contracts a bit. Lancer went through his contracts really fast because everyone was happy to help him.
I was always high on the scoreboards, but I realized that the game was still new… and there was a chance that I could become #1 on the leaderboards. The thought of that really enticed me. A lot. I had never been high on the leaderboards of any game before. So, without boosters, and without farming (honestly, I only farmed some of the bullshit impossible contracts. I did the Stormkills on sawmill_dm contract legit, with nothing but the MP5SD6 and APS) I played nothing but Team Elimination on Evac, killing as many VIP’s as I could, as I found it gave exp the fastest. I put in some insane hours and managed to get into the top 10 players.
It was right around this time that a player known as Glock243 also had plans to be the top player on the leaderboard. Only, he knew that he could not do it legitimately. So, he devised a, well, fairly devious strategy to become the #1 player. He re-spec’d his skill tree, and got every exp skill. He also bought some GP and bought all the exp boosters. He also figured out how to exploit the spawn system so that if you stand in a certain place on some certain deathmatch maps, the enemy will always spawn in a certain location. I know some of the locations but am obviously not going to reveal them. Anyway, he spent hours and hours doing nothing but pistol longshots, farming his alternate accounts. He was very good at leaving as soon as someone joined the match, so as to never get caught. In about 2 weeks he managed to farm 10 million exp, putting him at level 65.
Now you must imagine how confused everyone was. Nobody ever saw him in-game, because he only played in empty servers and left whenever someone joined. Yet, he had a fair amount of hours in, and an insane amount of exp. He always claimed he just got a lot of prokills from camping lighthouse for longshots, but I don’t think anyone was fooled. We all knew he was farming, yet nobody could prove it. Anyway, it became pretty obvious that with someone making 5 million exp per week there was no way I was ever going to be #1 on the leaderboards, so I basically quit the game.
What does any of this have to do with 1337, you may ask? Well hold on, I’m getting to it.
About 2 months later I logged onto Contract Wars, and who do I see in the chat room but LancerEvolutionX. I say hi, and he seems very excited to see me. “Clans just came out today!” he says. “Join my clan!” I was secretly disappointed, because being one of the top players I had always assumed that I would lead my own clan, but apparently I was a bit too late. “What’s it called?” I asked. “1337. I didn’t come up with the name.”
As it turns out, Kaves had actually come up with the name. “Who is kaves?” I asked.
In my 2 months absence I had been playing a lot of Planetside 2, and I joined an amazing outfit called the 666 Devil Dogs. So when I read the recruitment thread kaves made, it seemed a bit subpar. “Mind if I spice it up a bit?” I asked, and then proceeded to do so, using the Devil Dogs website as a reference. Kaves seemed to think it was okay, so that was cool. Little did I know it would become one of the most viewed threads on the entire forums, with nearly 50,000 views and 1,200 posts.
If you want to see it, here is the initial thread: http://www.kongregate.com/forums/2523-clans/topics/333576-1337-recruitment
Here is my thread, which has been updated many times but still has some early comments: http://www.kongregate.com/forums/2523-clans/topics/334159-1337-elite-recruitment
So who was the early crew? Let me see who I can remember…
and… uh… jeez I don;t remember if some of the other guys started in OhMy or what. There was quite a few others, obviously, but only about 8 or so that actually went in Lancer’s chat room much. This thread here: http://www.kongregate.com/forums/2522-general/topics/368257-fancy-yourself-a-private-investigator-44-contract-wars-mysteries-for-you-to-solve
has references to a lot of the early 1337 players. Strayhunter, Knifekaw, FinalDance, SuperPorn, Schlier, MP201, etc.
Little more backround info. Grav was at this point, the first “tester” so to speak, and that might be the biggest reason why he was recruited to 1337 initially. I asked who he was, and only got the answer “official game tester” or something like that. I thought he was a mod, so for awhile I was under the impression that he would ban me if I didn’t watch myself.
Skullhead is one of the coolest guys from 1337. While I worked on the recruitment thread, he worked on the original clan website, which believe it or not, still gets at least a few applications per week, even though it was abandoned over a year ago. This could be wrong, but the way I remember it, roles were as follows:
Lancer: Poster girl and passive clan leader
Me: Recruitment thread-maker
Kaves: Half-assed recruitment thread maker, really bad at coming up with good clan names person, incredibly skilled ex-Counter-Strike player
Other people: Stuff
Maybe I’m being narcissistic but felt like me and Skullhead were for awhile doing the most to organize the clan.
Website here: http://1337elite.weebly.com/
Anyway, for awhile we were REALLY strict about who we let in, and we were way ahead of all the other clans without even trying. We stayed at a really nice ~40 members, and up until about the beginning of 2014 I could honestly say that I knew pretty much every person in 1337. We wiped the first clan war without even trying.
During the summer of 2013 we started getting more serious with things. At this point, every tester on the international servers were in 1337, so we were the closet thing to the “developer clan” there was. We started a skype group, since we already used skype for tester chat. Tester chat was basically the same thing as 1337 officer chat, which was kind of cool. I re-wrote the recruitment thread several times and we definitely expanded recruitment, bringing us up to around 120 or so members. When I got to college I thought I would spend less time playing CW… and I did…. but I also spent a huge amount of time working on the clan. As my name fell lower and lower on the leaderboard, I realized that I didn’t really care about the game so much as I did about the community. I started a clan Facebook page, which is now sitting at over 4,000 likes, got to know everyone in 1337, started a 1337 raidcall (which was abandoned once Cafeteria got us our current Teamspeak server), and I spent a fair amount of time on Dolby Axon getting to know people from other clans as well.
More recently, we have re-structured our recruitment process, officer system, and moved on to other games. We have, I believe over 200 members currently, several massive skype chat groups, and play many other games ranging from Warframe to Warface and Survarium. Of course, a lot of 1337 members still play Contract Wars and we still have a lot of testers (including me). So, yeah… that’s kind of the “history of 1337” as best as I can remember it. I’m sure I left a lot out, but… I’m tired.