Judges’ Eye: ‘World War IX: Week One’

With the first week of World War IX coming to a close, the war has been unexpectedly one-sided. What do the judges have to say about everybody’s performance in the latest community conflict?

Designed by Wynn

On June 1, the Blue Sunset Alliance (Water Vikings, Elite Guardians, and Rebel Penguin Federation) issued a statement entitled Operation: Domination, a war declaration on the Army of Club Penguin. One day later, the Help Force announced their support for their brother allies. Following this, the Sapphire Concordat alliance, fresh off the back of the Bloodbath Barrage win, announced a membership shakeup and a joint declaration of war on the Blue Sunset Alliance. This officially elevated ‘Operation: Domination’ to the world war we have today.

Sapphire Concordat attempting to invade Blue Sunset Alliance

June 2, 2023: Sapphire Concordat invades Blue Sunset Alliance’s Alabama; BSA victory

One week in, a staggering 30 battles have already taken place. Unexpectedly, the Blue Sunset Alliance has won every battle in the war thus far. That is not to say that the Sapphire Concordat have not put up a fight, they have, but there is something wrong with the Sapphires during their battles. That is why this edition of Judges’ Eye moves away from the traditional tournament battles and quizzes our exceptional judging team on what makes an army do well in an extended war.

As a battle concludes, it is the judges’ job to post a summary of what took place during the battle. Whilst these summaries are often great for army leaders to reflect on their battle, a good old-fashioned interview with the judges allows us to get down and dirty and gather their true, unfiltered thoughts on the conflict.

June 6, 2023: An example of a judge’s summary of a battle. Click to enlarge.

Club Penguin Armies contacted SpottyPopcornyScorpWynn, and Revan, the five most active judges from Club Penguin Army Judges. Reporter Sweater asked each judge questions on how each side is performing, how they could improve, and what they like or dislike about the conflict. Note the interview with Revan isn’t finished due to miscommunication errors on Sweater’s part.

What are your overall thoughts regarding World War IX?

Spotty: Apart from having no schedule anymore, definitely how not one battle is the same. Every time I judge (multiple times a day) you always see both armies improving based on the feedback they’ve been given. Many would have thought with all the losses the war would be over, but based on the battles I’ve judged within the last day, I’d say it’s only just getting started.

Popcorny: It has done very well to test the capabilities of CPAJ and has done a good job of increasing conflict in the community which is always good.

Scorp: The war is definitely a World War in terms of scale, magnitude, and soon, duration as well. However, the shocking lack of victories for the SC shattered my expectations. Still, it has served as a great way to spike activity in the community, and I’m glad it happened because we really needed a major event like this to make the summer interesting. At least, it’s better than the summer of last year.

Wynn: So far the war seems pretty one-sided, although the Blue Sunset Alliance tends to reach lower maxes right now, they are still usually higher than their opponents. The Sapphire Concordat managed to improve their performance at some battles almost matching the BSA, but its hard to tell if we will see a real turn of the tide in this war. It is possible though that the ACP will remain in the state of war for a longer while.

When the war expanded to world war status, there were concerns regarding how CP Army Judges would cope with the increased demand. Do you think CPAJ has kept up well, if so how and why? If not, what could change?

Spotty: During the last previous war in Club Penguin Army Network the war became known as “the war of no judges”. During this time I was not apart of this league nor judging team but I witnessed the collapse of a judging team. Therefore, with this war I was determined to ensure all battles went ahead due to people recently questioning not only my position as a Head Judge, but also the position of CPAJ. Personally I think CPAJ has kept up well, we are 22 battles in and none of them have been cancelled, with only 1 review being requested. Obviously we are short on non-affiliated judges, so judges like myself are able to judge most battles ensuring the war goes ahead.

Popcorny: I was worried for a couple seconds then remembered we have some people who are very good and who are able to do a lot of judging for us. The seeming lack of reviews indicates that judging has been of a good standard so I think CPAJ has held well. There’s been no cancellations so credit to all those that have helped.

Scorp: CPAJ has done their absolute best to ensure battles never get cancelled. I myself contributed to judging whenever I had the chance, and the Head Judges are constantly on the alert to make sure battles don’t go void. There’s nothing they should be doing different, because the only way to go from here is downwards. For the people who keep complaining about the organization, I would like to remind you of the last world war we saw, and the absolute shitshow it was in terms of judging. While there are certain elements regarding rules and unfairness that need to be addressed, we should still accept that in essence, CPAJ has done their job.

Wynn: I think CPAJ handled it well and with a lot of devotion, especially from Spotty’s side, but sadly most battles have the same judges stepping up, which is obviously tiring.

What are some highlights from either alliance during the war, have any tactics or formations stood out to you?

Spotty: To be fair I have really enjoyed seeing the creativity of leaders. It’s been a while since I have properly judged and it’s been interesting seeing new formations such as heart and k, or forms that are hardly used such as triangles, and infinity being used. Also the ability to continue making new tactics for each battle despite being 22 battles in continues to surprise me.

Popcorny: The level of formations have been sterling from both sides. The BSA were consistently doing complex forms throughout the first battles which in turn led to the Sapphire Concordat needing to replicate and invent complex forms that can match their opponents. As is in business, competition has raised the standards the armies are battling at and everyone wants to best everyone with their leading capabilities.

Scorp: The war was mostly armies trying their best to perform in the safest, perfect way in order to try and ensure their victory. I haven’t spectated any battles other than the ones I judged, so I can only speak about those. The one formation I still remember is Water Vikings’ Fish formation, the entire judging gc went wild about it cuz it was a perfect example of innovation combined with positive impact on the battlefield. Another thing that stood out to me was how SC competed fiercely with BSA despite size disadvantages. In every battle there were always some points where SC would come out on top of the larger army. The only reason they lost rooms is because they couldn’t keep it up throughout the room, their dominance would last for a very small part of the room. This gave BSA the chance to use their massive size advantages.

Wynn: RPF’s performance is usually on the highest level, their speed and clean formations are hard to beat. I also noticed though that the Sapphire Concordat has a few pretty good leaders, who could definitely compete with RPF if they had higher maxes or at least better-trained troops. In this war I was generally surprised by the leading skills displayed by some leaders on both sides – the battles are not always like two cheerleading practices accidentally taking place next to each other, which tend to happen in CPA these days.

Regarding the Blue Sunset Alliance specifically, what has worked so well for them during the conflict?

Spotty: The Sunset alliance has had the upper hand throughout the war in terms of size. Most battles they have had a significant size advantage, despite being just 3 armies, which has helped them win their battles. They have also listened to the feedback such as less @@@ bombs or less wipes. Even though the war is 22 battles in, they still seem just as motivated as when they declared.

Popcorny: For a good proportion of the battles they’ve commanded a size advantage that has made it tough for the Sapphire Concordat to compete, as well as the aforementioned complex forms have helped them demonstrate that advantage.

Scorp: Obviously, it’s their large maxes. No disrespect to SC, but despite the BSA’s individual armies typical maxes being much smaller, the alliance itself never maxes low. All three of the armies usually max around 20+, their battles have rarely seen the same maxes. Most of the times, the size is well above 30 which makes it hard for anyone to compete. That’s also the bare minimum size you need to completely control a room with formations, to go from one end of the room to another without needing to leave gaps.

Wynn: They definitely have good leaders and amazing members attending, who know not only leading wins battles. They also don’t hesitate during the fight and rarely lose momentum in the rooms, maintaining a good speed.

What would you like to see more of from the Sapphire Concordat?

Spotty: During the last few battles I’ve been in contact with leaders asking for feedback on their latest battles. Ever since I’ve seen a massive improvement in not only their formations, but their speed and motivation. Obviously I would like to see their size continue to increase, although I expect it will as they begin to win more rooms helping to increase their motivation.

Popcorny: Without just saying more penguins, a better variety of tactics could be useful in helping overcome size deficits. For example when they are in two lines, they could have one side of the line say Yes and the other side say No. This has been done a couple times but overall not much from what I’ve seen.

Scorp: I’d like to see them try to raise their max more. I’m disappointed I never got to see what could’ve happened if SC and BSA had similar maxes. There was one AUSIA battle where this seemed like a possibility but BSA suddenly pulled ahead with their numbers. Apart from this, I’d say try to avoid things like wipes, gappy formations, etc, the usual battle tips handed out by any judge.

Wynn: I would want to see fewer wipes (for the record most leaders seem to follow that advice already but not all) and fewer bunches before making movements or formations because that slows them down by a lot and just gives space for their opponents to show off, while they are standing still barely visible.

On top of this, what has Sapphire Concordat done well so far and what could BSA improve on?

Spotty: Like I said previously, they have listened to feedback amazingly. Every battle you see, they’re improving throughout every single room. However, BSA need to learn to improve from feedback. Suggestions such as less @@@ bombs or less wipes haven’t been taken on as such by EGCP who still seem to be leading in a very old fashioned way, which isn’t bad but they need to continue adapting to modern CPA.

Popcorny: The Sapphire Concordat throughout usually have been on par with the BSA in terms of speed and room entries. Recently they have ditched the stack wipe bomb that they’d been doing consistently and created more variety. The BSA could also do the aforementioned better variety of tactics as with battles such as the Battle of Acre being very tight, every margin counts.

Scorp: SC’s performance has been stellar, and I have no major complaints regarding their actual leading skills. BSA, on the other hand, slips up sometimes, it’s easy to get complacent when you’re maxing twice your opponent. Realistically, an army maxing 15 should not be able to suddenly appear more visible than an army maxing 30. But it has happened at some points in the battles. While BSA did well to use the size difference to their advantage so far, I’d say they need to remember that the battle isn’t over until it’s actually over, especially seeing how SC seems to be catching up well recently.

Wynn: I think some of the Blue Sunset Alliance leaders could learn skills from some Sapphire Concordat leaders. It was also very nice to see the SC taking the judges’ advice into consideration.

Do you have any final comments to either alliance or the readers?

Spotty: Honestly, just keep it up you’re both doing well despite battling 4 or so times a day. Hopefully we start to see more people able to judge, as next week I’m going to see Mr Harry Styles so I will be taking a 2 day judging vacation. If anyone unaffiliated wants to help judge the war then please do sign up in CPAJ, it would be much appreciated!

Popcorny: Didn’t know CPA had readers.

Scorp: I like the concept of ‘visual judging’, something that was explained very well by Wynn and Popcorny in previous posts. I don’t give wins based on a !sizeroom command, it all depends on what the army is actually doing on the battlefield. The people who keep saying SC should’ve won more rooms do not realize that you cannot claim a win when you had to spread out with significant gaps just to make your form large enough to cover a room, while the enemy has troops bunching because there isn’t enough space in the room unless they spill out of the form. Having led S/M armies myself, I can understand the pain of hearing ‘get more troops’, but that is the spirit of this game. If you want something, you have to come get it, you won’t get handed the fruit without the labor. That being said, it has been a really great war so far. I’m kinda thankful I’m not leading any army rn, some of my friends are losing braincells from all the stress. I’d like to appreciate all the leaders and staff who are working so hard for their armies, you guys are doing amazing, please keep going for your respective goals.

Wynn: Seeing what was happening in the past few days in the CPAJ channels, I just want to ask everyone to be respectful towards the judges who take their free time (sometimes a lot of it) to judge your invasions every day and as far as I know, they are doing their job very well.

With such a hefty interview, there is lots to draw from. To start, infamous @ big word bubbles are a NO with these judges. With many people being over this style of tactics, it’s clear these should be left in the reserve drawer. On top of this, judges go wild for clean (i.e., not bunched or ‘gappy’) and creative formations. When dealing with battles, it’s easy to say the bigger army automatically wins. Whilst size certainly plays a large factor in the 30-0 results we have, it’s clear the Sapphire Concordat has lots more than just size to work on.

This paragraph contains the author’s opinions. As a leader of an army in the Sapphire Concordat, there is a LOT we could do to fix our mistakes and start churning out victories. With the judges’ thoughts above, hopefully, some closer battles are in store and the community can be thoroughly entertained. I’ve always believed that losing is learning and we will learn from our mistakes. From my perspective, this war has positioned Club Penguin Army Judges in an excellent light – let’s hope the organization continues to excel and provide adequate judges for future battles, World War IX related or not.

With the community active once more, could we be heading for the best summer since 2020? Only time will tell. Will the Blue Sunset Alliance clean sweep this war? Or will we see one of the greatest comebacks in this community? Do you also agree with the judges’ views?

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Mchappy is interning at Club Penguin Armies as the Chief Executive Producer. Max held him at gunpoint to finish his biography.

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