Editorial: What Would You Do? Your Army Can’t Escape Small-Medium Status

Imagine a situation where you have been leading an army consistently for a couple months. Things seem to be going great but you just can’t quite reach that major mark.

What would you do? In the past year, we have seen the small-medium army community collapse in on itself with the Top Ten in recent months barely being able to showcase seven armies. Let alone ten. A formidable small-medium community that was once a competitive landscape has now become a dead zone. Only one small-medium tournament was held in 2022 known as the infamous Beach Brawl II.

Snapshot finish of Beach Brawl II

We could say that the community in general is continuing to shrink as the global pandemic shutdowns are left farther, and farther, in the past. There may even come a time where we are forced to redefine what is major, what is small-medium.

For example, 2022 was an interesting year for the Army of Club Penguin. For most of the year, the Clovers were led by Zeus1_4 who passed the leadership over in September. Despite having the oldest legacy in the community, turning 16 on September 29, the army suffered from inconsistent sizes. This led the army to being considered a small-medium army for a majority of 2022, only gracing the major marks twice under Zeus1_4.

Zeus1_4 leads the Army of Club Penguin to major status in January 2022

Nevertheless, the Clovers remained open for the entire year. In fact, they were one of only four armies to have been included in every week’s Top Ten post. Even though it was clear from the outside that the army was facing hurdles that needed to be overcome, the army kept going. One could argue it’s a fool’s decision to remain open instead of opting for temporary closure.

On the other hand, historic armies like the Ice Warriors and Water Vikings witnessed small disruptions towards the end of the year. While it is unclear what exactly led them to their decisions, the armies stopped weekly events. However, both would continue their regular server operations.

Aaronstone42 announces Water Viking’s temporary closure

There is nothing inherently wrong with being considered a small-medium army. Value can be brought to this community no matter the size. The debate between continuing to hold events versus temporarily shutting down is a different post in itself. As hype in the community (at large) continues to diminish from its former glory, it is unsure what role small-medium armies will play.

Club Penguin Armies seeks to have community leaders answer the question: what would you do if your army can’t escape small-medium status?

Calgocubs21, Army of Club Penguin Commander in Chief: I would first take a step back and analyze what my army excels at and what it lacks or struggles with to get a general idea of what needs to be changed and worked on going forward. A lot of issues with armies in my opinion stem from internal issues of the functionality and efficiency of a staff team. If I determined that our staff culture and frame work is not be up to standards of my expectations then I would start with uprooting the structure and re-laying the foundation of the staff team to build a cohesive and functioning staff team that all trusts and relies on each other.

Another important area is that I would create a general plan, goal, or idea for both my staff team and my troops to buy into and feel invested in. Even further I would focus on ramping up recruiting efforts, but also our troop retention across events as that is crucial for us to become major.

To improve troop retention rates I would focus on high quality individual events that cater and offer something new and interesting at each event that keeps on pulling our troops back in wanting more. Troops will not stick around if you just sit in one rooms, spam emotes, and do a lazy “dress up” event. You must give them a goal and a reason to stick around through both the highs and the lows.

IceQueen, Ice Warriors Leader: In the wise words of Iceyfeet1234, we will become a full-time Roblox army.

Follow the steps of Water Ninjas in October 2020 and you’ll get major army status in no time! Have dedicated staff, recruit, convert them to Club Penguin armies (CPA), host fun events, make bonds with your troops and build up your community.

Nicky 3070, Templars Emperor: Work until my army escapes the small-medium status or end up becoming the most powerful small-medium army ever.

Also, Club Penguin Armies was able to get in touch with Lightningmcj, a legend in the small-medium army community.

Your army can’t escape small-medium army status, what would you do?

I would do my best to get marginally bigger by recruiting but I wouldn’t fret about it too much, because, at the end of the day, I care more about fostering a community and not pushing my staff to unreasonable lengths. And being a middling small-medium army that maxes 10-15 is not a bad place to be!

Since you mentioned community, what does fostering a community look like in your eyes?

It means creating an environment where people feel safe and cared for and they can trust the leaders and staff. More than that, they feel like the community is a second family. People treat each other with kindness and respect, and they have fun and laugh together.

Can you provide an example?

I guess I would just say the example in my experience of Pizza Federation hosting non-Club Penguin events like Among Us and Garticphone, and people showing up because they genuinely enjoy each other’s company. People come to have fun and make stupid jokes with their friends, and that level of comfort I think signifies a good community.

As you can see, a lot of the answers list community as a top priority. Some even allude to the fact that, even with small sizes, there is still the opportunity to be the “most powerful” one of them all. Yet, why do some armies shut down over (allegedly) poor performance?

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