Useful Technology + Tools
Potato Alliance N-Day Guide
Why you should use it: If you have anywhere from 1 to ~25 puppet nations, it makes switching between them easier.
NationStates++ is one of the most widely-used extensions for NationStates. One of its main features is a puppet management tool that allows you to switch between nation accounts by clicking a link instead of having to enter your password each time. Being able to switch between puppets quickly and easily is extremely important because less wasted time logging into a puppet nation means more time for shielding or launching.
NationStates++ can be installed here. Once it's added, you'll see a new button in the top right of the NationStates menu bar labelled 'Puppets'. Hover over it, and you'll see a link labelled 'Manage Puppets'. If you click that, you'll be taken to a page where you can add puppet accounts and even organize them into different lists.
Unfortunately, however, NationStates++ is old and no longer maintained. While its puppet management function still seems to work, many of its other features are broken. If you want a newer, alternate version that lacks many of NationStates++'s issues, you can try LibreNS++. LibreNS++ is set up as a userscript (a little bit of code that the user -- you -- add to your browser), so you need to install the Greasemonkey (Firefox) or Tampermonkey (Chrome) extension first in order to run it (those extensions basically just allow you to add your own little bits of code to your browser).
Once you've installed one of those extensions, click here to install the LibreNS++ userscript. Reload NationStates once you've installed it, and you'll see a new button in the top right of the NationStates menu bar labelled 'Puppets'. Click on it, and you'll see a link labelled 'Manage Puppets'. If you click that, you'll be taken to a page where you can add puppet accounts. You can find more information about LibreNS++ here.
Why you should use it: If you have ~25 or more puppet nations, it makes switching between them a lot easier (even easier than NationStates++/LibreNS++). It's the preferred puppet switching technique of the pros!
Containerise is an extension for the Firefox browser that makes handling a large number of puppets much easier. As Racoda, the author of the main guide on using Containerise for NationStates, notes:
"Firefox includes a feature that lets you use multiple identities (multiple accounts) on one site, with each account in a distinct, colour-coded container. What this means for NationStates is that you can be logged in to multiple nations in different tabs all at once, without having to switch between them. This allows to greatly speed up [switching between puppet nations].... Of course, the more ... puppets you have, the greater the time savings. In essence, containers can be thought of as if you're using a different browser (or private browsing) for each nation, but all within a single browser instance.
One of the many extensions leveraging the power of Firefox' containers is Containerise, which lets you automagically open a tab with a different, logged-in nation (without having to log out from all of your other ones) by simply clicking a link."
The Potato Alliance commanders advise you to set up and use Containerise if you're planning to use a large number of puppet nations (say, 25 or more) during N-Day. Being able to switch between puppets quickly and easily is extremely important because less wasted time logging into a puppet nation means more time for shielding or launching. If you're interested in learning how to use it and want to run a lot of puppets, but you're not sure quite how things work, feel free to tag King Platypus#1081, Somyrion#8047, or 9003#5389 on Discord for help.
The following dispatch is a comprehensive guide to setting up Containerise for puppet management. Please read it for instructions on how to set up the extension. It's originally meant for use by card farmers (players who run large numbers of puppet nations in order to generate cards), though, so it includes references to card farming. You can safely ignore those, because in this case you're using it for N-Day, not the cards game. But make sure to choose the container=puppet option when you reach that step in the instructions!
Firefox includes a feature that lets you use multiple identities (multiple accounts) on one site, with each account in a distinct, colour-coded "container". What this means for NationStates is that you can be logged in to multiple nations in different tabs all at once, without having to switch between them. This allows to greatly speed up card farming, as switching between nations can take a considerable amount of time. Of course, the more farming puppets you have, the greater the time savings.
In essence, containers can be thought of as if you're using a different browser (or private browsing) for each nation, but all within a single browser instance.
This feature stems from Firefox' desire to be a privacy-focused browser. So far, it is exclusive to Firefox, and won't work in Chromium-based browsers (Chrome, Edge, Opera...).
One of the many extensions leveraging the power of Firefox' containers is Containerise, which lets you automagically open a tab with a different, logged-in nation (without having to log out from all of your other ones) by simply clicking a link.
TL;DR: Containers are a Firefox exclusive feature that enables you to be logged in to multiple nations without having to switch and relogin.
You can install Firefox through your package manager or download it here.
The default Multi-Account Containers extension is cumbersome to use with lots of puppets: each separate container must be opened manually through clicking in a menu.
Containerise is an extension that lets you dynamically change the nation you're logged into (the container) based on the content of the address bar. You can get it here.
This is the most confusing step of all. Containerise uses a special syntax, Regex, to choose when to switch to a different "container" (nation).
There's two main ways in which you can configure the extension to switch to a nation: nation=puppet or container=puppet.
Instant switching when visiting the puppet's nation page (ex. nationstates.net/nation=my_secret_puppet switches to "My Secret Puppet")
Does not work on N-Day/Z-Day and possibly other events (it will switch you to the puppet, preventing you from shielding/healing it)
container=puppet has to be manually added to the address to switch to a puppet (ex. nationstates.net/container=my_secret_puppet to switch to "My Secret Puppet")
Does work on N-Day/Z-Day (will not switch you to the puppet unless container= is in the address)
If in doubt, nation=puppet is usually easiest for beginners and will work out of the box.
You will have to generate a rule for each puppet, like this:
@^.*\.nationstates\.net/(.*/)?nation=puppet_number_1(/.*)?$ , Puppet Number 1
@^.*\.nationstates\.net/(.*/)?nation=puppet_number_2(/.*)?$ , Puppet Number 2
@^.*\.nationstates\.net/(.*/)?container=puppet_number_1(/.*)?$ , Puppet Number 1
@^.*\.nationstates\.net/(.*/)?container=puppet_number_2(/.*)?$ , Puppet Number 2
The part before the comma is the puppet's name, all lowercase, spaces replaced with underscores. The part after the comma is any name that uniquely identifies your puppet (purely cosmetic, but it has to be unique — I recommend just using the puppet's name). The easiest way to generate these rules is with a spreadsheet.
Having done this, click on the Containerise extension's button (four colourful squares).
TL;DR: Read the damn step, it's important.
It's a good idea to generate clickable links to each of your nations, so that it automagically opens a new container-tab. If you don't want to use the script from the previous step, use a spreadsheet. You can also add additional links that redirect you to any NS page, like your puppet's issues or it's deck page.
The links should be in this format:
Issues link: https://www.nationstates.net/container=my_puppet_1/page=dilemmas
Issues link: https://www.nationstates.net/nation=my_puppet_1/page=dilemmas
TL;DR: Too lazy to read an optional step? Your loss.
Now that you've configured the extension comes the mundane task of having to log in to each of your puppets. The upside is you'll only have to do this once!
Open a new container-tab according to the rules format you chose:
Click the Login button
Enter your credentials and click the Stay logged in/Remember me checkbox.
(If you don't you'll have to login next time — that defeats the purpose of containers)
Click the Log in button
TL;DR: You'll figure this out sooner or later. Or you could just read the 81 words.
There's a lot of scripts created by the community that you can use to speed up farming even more.
I've created a set of 3 simple ones to make issue answering easier (they'll have to be all installed).
The rest of the repository contains other useful cards-related scripts, I encourage you to take a look at them too.
If you're new to cards, I recommend reading this excellent guide by DGES/TNP's Cards Guild.
You can also join the cards discord for more tips, tricks & tools.
Why you should use it: It will make all your actions much quicker. Everyone should use it!
Psithurism is a keybinding script (a derivative of Breeze++) that has been built specifically for Potato Alliance for N-Day. It takes actions that you would normally take with your mouse, like going to a certain page or clicking a button, and maps them to keys on your keyboard.
For example, if you want to check if there are any incoming nukes on our faction, instead of having to find the right page and then click a button to shoot down anything incoming, you can simply press m once (to go to the incoming nukes page), and then immediately m again (to shoot down anything incoming, or reload the page to check for anything new otherwise). That means that instead of having to handle everything manually, you can simply do m, m, m, m, .... So much easier!
Here's a list of all the keybind functions that Psithurism will have:
Key (on your keyboard) --------------------------------------------
What does it do?
Reloads any page you're on.
Goes back to the previous page.
p, p, p, ...
Convert production to nukes or shields -- which one it chooses is based on specialty (military specialists' production is converted into nukes, both other specialties' production is converted into shields). You have to press it multiple times in a row to cycle through the production-generating process (going to the production page, selecting the right amount of production, etc.). Stop pressing it when you have no more production left to convert!
w, w, w, ...
Convert production to nukes only. Don't use this unless there's some good reason why you need to generate nukes on an Economic or Strategic Specialist nation!
s, s, s, ...
Convert production to shields only. Don't use this unless there's some good reason why you need to generate nukes on a Military Specialist nation!
Hit once to go to your nukes page, twice to go to the Potato Alliance faction page.
m, m, m, ...
View (press once) and shield (press twice) incoming nukes, as described in the example above. If you're sitting on the incoming nukes page, waiting for anything to shoot down, just press it over and over and over. It'll keep reloading the page until there's something to shoot down, at which point it'll select the shield button immediately.
k, k, k, ...
Perform the entire targetting procedure. You have to start on another faction's page (i.e. the faction that Potato Alliance is currently attacking). Then press it repeatedly to cycle through the process of automatically finding a not-fully-irradiated nation to target your nukes at, targetting the right number of nukes to make that nation reach 100% radiation, and then finding another nation to repeat the process. When you use this keybind to target your nukes, it will automatically calculate what the best number of nukes to target is, without wasting too many. Just keep pressing the key repeatedly until you run out of nukes to target!
L, L, L, ...
View (press once) and launch (press twice) your nukes that are targetted and ready to be launched. If you're waiting for your nukes to get ready to launch, just press it over and over. It'll keep reloading the page until there's something to shoot down, at which point it'll select the launch button immediately.
Go to the page that lists all the factions and the scoreboard.
Because Psithurism is a custom script, there are some details that can't be added to it yet (like the exact URL of the Potato Alliance faction page), so it's not available to install right now. But as soon as N-Day begins, Psithurism will be made available through a link and set of instructions on the Potato Command Discord server. Keep an eye out!
There is one thing you can do to prepare for installing Psithurism, though: just like LibreNS++ above, Psithurism will be distributed as a userscript (a little bit of code that the user -- you -- add to your browser). So you need to install the Tampermonkey (Firefox | Chrome) extension first in order to run it (those extensions basically just allow you to add your own little bits of code to your browser). In addition, if you've previously installed Breeze++ or a similar extension, make sure to turn it off before using Psithurism!