by Max Barry

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Happy Holidays!

by Max Barry
Thu, 23 Dec 2010

I think 2010 was a good year. Nothing went catastrophically wrong, for one thing. That's a win right there. We implemented some small but useful improvements. We got the forum under control (for now). The community continued to grow, following the Great Jolt Debacle. No-one sued. All good things.

In 2011 we'll switch to our new look—which you can beta-test now by selecting a "Theme" in your nation's Settings (and discuss here). The current theme will, of course, remain available for those who prefer to kick it old-school.

It's kind of a shame you can't choose the 2002 style. Now that would be nostalgic. Huh. I just thought of that.

Thanks again to all of you for making this place what it is. Because what it is, for the most part, is pretty awesome. Not particularly slick. Not very professional. Not exactly Web 2.0. But awesome.

Now Only Death is Certain

by Max Barry
Sat, 18 Dec 2010

There's some discussion in the forum about tweaking the algorithm we use to calculate a nation's tax rate. If you'd like to see how you'd be affected, try out this handy calculator. And lodge your objection now, before it's too late!

P.S. Yes, there's a little number in the sidebar now telling you how many unread News posts you have. BECAUSE THEY'RE IMPORTANT. They are too.

Update: Implemented! Thanks for the feedback.

Eight Years and a New Lick

by Max Barry
Sun, 28 Nov 2010

I mean look. A new look. Remember when NationStates looked like this? If so, you've been on this site for far too long. But either way, we've had our current look for a long time and are overdue for a fresh look of paint. I mean lick.

Hopefully we can fix a few niggling usability issues, make better use of those new-fangled high-resolution screens people have nowadays, and less resemble 1997. It's an update rather than a complete redesign, and we want your feedback to help shape it! So please try out the beta version here:

... and throw in your thoughts!

If this works out, this will become the default NationStates theme, with the old look remaining available for people who don't want to change.

Awesomely Smooth Forum: Check

by Max Barry
Sun, 14 Nov 2010

So that seemed to go well. Nothing caught on fire, at least. There will be a small amount of forum downtime in the near future as we lock in the new server config, after which everything will be wonderful.

For those of you with NO INTEREST IN THE FORUM WHATSOEVER, this means an end to the forum's ability to slow down the game. Everyone's a winner!

The Forum That Ate Everything

by Max Barry
Sat, 30 Oct 2010

The forum has been kind of destroying the server lately, so we are GETTING RID OF IT. By which I mean, moving it to dedicated hardware. This will allow us to return to the kind of smooth, uninterrupted service NationStates is famous for. Until the next load surge. But that won't be for ages. Months. Probably.

There will be a period of significant forum downtime, probably around four hours, probably soon. The game will stay up. Then there may be one or two more brief forum outages while we tinker with things. But then: all good.


by Max Barry
Sun, 17 Oct 2010

One of our dearest moderators lost a loved one, hence our black borders. Our thoughts are with her during this difficult time.

Downtime: You Should Have Checked Twitter

by Max Barry
Thu, 07 Oct 2010

We have some scheduled downtime for 10AM Friday October 8th, and you know what that means: a lot of people will complain we don't have a Twitter account. Because if we did, then when the site wasn't loading, you could check the Twitter account to see what's up. Don't ask me how you would know we had a Twitter account. That's not the point. The point is, we now have a Twitter account, so when you can't get on to the site for an hour tomorrow morning, we can say, "Well, you should have checked our Twitter account."

Map of Online Communities

by Max Barry
Wed, 06 Oct 2010

This should probably be an update on some of the new code we've been putting through. But who can think of game features when NationStates gets a mention on xkcd! We're a peninsula on MMO Isle!

Password Recovery on Baleeted Nations

by Max Barry
Mon, 12 Jul 2010

You know what's incredibly annoying about the "Forgot Your Password?" feature? It doesn't work on deleted nations. THAT'S WHEN YOU NEED IT MOST. You had a nation years ago, you want to revive it, but who can remember their old passwords? Not normal people. STUPID PASSWORD RECOVERY.

In other news, password recovery now works on deleted nations.

Liberal NationStates and Conservative NationStates

by Max Barry
Thu, 29 Apr 2010

I know what you're thinking: If only every day could be April Fool's Day! Well now it can! If you thought this year's April Fool's celebration was not just worth a chuckle but THE WAY THE SITE SHOULD BE ALL THE TIME, then indulge yourself:

Liberal NationStates

Conservative NationStates

Please note that opening Liberal NationStates in one tab and Conservative NationStates in another will cause your browser to become inoperable due to partisan bickering.

I fixed NationStates

by Max Barry
Wed, 31 Mar 2010

I look back at the guy I was when I wrote this site and think, "WOW! What an IDIOT!" Because clearly I didn't know anything about politics. I was a typical mindless drone, opening my mouth wide for whatever manufactured "truth" the LAMESTREAM media wanted to shovel in there and swallowing it down whole.

Well! I've read a lot of very EYE-OPENING books since then, which set me straight about how the world REALLY works. So now I'm FIXING NATIONSTATES: correcting all those INCREDIBLY BIASED government categories to be more ACCURATE!

This will probably upset some people, who are SLAVES OF A CORRUPT IDEOLOGY, but the sooner those sheeple confront the truth, the better.

I hope you enjoy the new, ideologically correct NationStates!

World Assembly Renovations

by Max Barry
Fri, 26 Feb 2010

Security CouncilGeneral AssemblyFor some time now, the World Assembly has housed both the General Assembly and the Security Council. This created some practical problems, such as delegates elbowing each other in the corridors, deliberately tripping each other, and taping messages to the back of each other's jackets reading: "MY COUNCIL IS TEH SUCK!!1!" And we shall not speak of the pantsing incident.

Clearly such conditions made it difficult to concentrate on ensuring global harmony. The World Assembly therefore commenced construction of two separate edifices, so that delegates of each Council could conduct their noble work unhindered by the pointless bickering of the other. It is with great pleasure that the WA now announces these works are complete, and thanks you for your attention to the mandatory invoice that will shortly arrive at your respective parliaments, palaces, senates, and subterranean bunkers.

We had some downtime

by Max Barry
Sun, 07 Feb 2010

Apparently a moose chewed through some Bell Canada fiber optic cables and severed connection to our data center. That moose is now being tried for domestic terrorism.

Mobile NationStates

by Max Barry
Tue, 02 Feb 2010

When we started, there were no mobile devices. The only way to play NationStates was to dial in with your rotary phone and hold the speaker near your computer's CPU. To send telegrams, you had to go down to your local post office and physically wire a telegram. The daily update took two weeks.

But now mobile devices are everywhere! So here's a way to view NationStates that's not quite so mobile-hostile:

This is just something I whipped up, not particularly slick. But it's better than trying to pinch-scroll your way around the main site. If it seems to work OK, we'll auto-redirect visits here from iPhones and Androids. Users on rotary-dial phones will be unaffected.