The Libertarian – April 2021

Cover by loozone

0Team Leader IntroductionIntroductionDeconfilction
1The Sound of MusicSpecialchiari.cord
3Singin’ in the RainCreativekrizzycatt
4Yes ManInterviewidolayainerz
5Sausage PartyCreative ReviewHorus
6Word SearchLibertarian Game
7A Series of Unfortunate EventsSpeciallauraemilyy
8Pan’s Labyrinth Event CoverageHorus & loozone
9The Queen’s GambitExclusive Interviewloozone
10The Best Exotic Marigold HotelEvent Coveragelauraemilyy
11SevenInformative Reviewprincess81818
12The Pursuit of HappynessCreativeJonnyFEEAL

Team Leader Introduction

By Deconfilction

Cover by Nichilismo

Welcome to the April edition of the Libertarian, this month we’re going to bring you a variety of articles, interviews and much more based on movies! Most of you will have been stuck inside for many months now, so we thought why not remind you of some old classics, to help you escape reality.

Watching movies can help you relax, de-stress and even laugh so I encourage you all to take some time to read this edition and even consider watching some of the movies that are mentioned. Surprisingly, I only know one movie that is included in this edition which is “Singin’ in the Rain”, so I definitely have some catching up to do!

This has been my first Libertarian edition as the Team Leader and it has been challenging but interesting at the same time and I couldn’t have done it without the rest of my team, so I thank them for their hard work and time they’ve dedicated to creating this month’s edition.

The Sound of Music

By chiari.cord

Cover by loozone

Music surrounds us everyday. By listening to the radio on the road, at a party, when going into a store, and even when hearing a song that’s been playing in our head over and over again all day, our life has a constant soundtrack somehow. It is like we are in a movie, where most of the time there is some sort of melody in the background. Since going into HQ and completing tasks can be part of our day to day life, it is very possible that we end up getting some tunes to go with our duties.

For example, let’s take that moment where you decide to hop on Sentry. You get your cover on, and turn on the music. Depending on how much traffic there is in the lobby, you might want to change your songs. If there’s too many people, something calm and quieter like “Englishman in New York” by Sting would just be the perfect thing to concentrate less on the lyrics and more on letting in the right personnel. If there is next to no one going around, you might want to turn it up and listen to something more exciting. A song that would be great for this occasion could be “Don’t Start Now” by Dua Lipa. However, don’t get lost in the music, remember to watch out if anyone comes along!

When managing the Duty Desk, I think it falls into the same criteria as when doing sentry. You might want to have something quiet, because four different people might be asking things at once, and to have a loud song could just distract you. Apart from that, you could also play something like “High Hopes” by Panic! At The Disco, because its beats could help you get hyped up and motivate personnel doing shifts.

There’s a time during each day where we get to contribute to our lovely offices. Having a lot of Office work could be easier to tackle if you just accompany it with some good old jingles. For this time, I love putting on different songs, for example different ones by the band Queen, like “Under Pressure” “Don’t Stop Me Now” or “Another One Bites The Dust”. These just keep me going and give me the energy to get everything finished.

Talking about Office Duties, OPA members get a special position in HQ, which is the DJ booth. You’ve probably found someone someday blasting music on the radio. Some of you may have been around for our recently hosted special radio event! A full 48 hour stream, with lots of different DJs, different songs, and different vibes. It was certainly fun both for the DJs as well as for the people who were tuned in. I don’t think there’s a certain song you could use on this moment. It will all depend on each person, and what they decide to play.

If I have to say one great thing about music, it would be that it’s so diverse, as there’s always millions of artists and songs to discover. There will always be a perfect song to listen to in every situation, going from the saddest moments, to the best days of your life, music will always find a way to make its way to you. Now, what do you listen to while in HQ or completing USDF duties? Do you have any favourites?


By Deconfilction

Cover by idolayainerz

Clueless. Yup, that was me when I entered USDF’s HQ for the first time. This kind of environment wasn’t new to me as I had worked in agencies before, however, the whole concept of a military on Habbo and the different stations and aspects of HQ, was completely daunting. Funnily enough, this picture of HQ was taken 2 days after my first enlistment and you can imagine how scared I was, walking into a room so big as USDF’s for the first time. In this article, I am going to share with you some of my moments as a newbie in USDF and hopefully provide today’s newbies with some top tips so you don’t make the same mistakes as I did!

26th March 2017 was the first time I ever entered USDF’s HQ, and with breaks in between, 4 years on I am still here! Unfortunately, I have a memory like a goldfish so I can’t remember exact details on my newbie moments but I can certainly share the ones I do remember along with some additional potential moments that others could experience. After my enlistment, I remember being so confused about what each position was and why we had them but with a little help from attending FEATs, I was soon able to grasp the concept of each position and eventually I was able to man them!

It’s obvious that when you first join an organisation, you aren’t going to know every rule and regulation because it is simply impossible. On a few occasions, I would find myself accidentally breaking regulations such as using coloured chat to converse with people as a result of being “clueless”. It’s embarrassing to think that I did this but I thought I could promote people so I called them to attention, however, I was given a slap on the wrist and a stern warning because no doubt, people thought I was a troll!

Looking back at my enlisted career, I would have certainly taken advice given to me more seriously regardless if at that moment in time, you feel like you aren’t going to want to stay at USDF. 9/10 any advice given to you, can be used in real life as well, just like skills that are learnt at USDF. Furthermore, I wished I had settled down quicker and took things more seriously, because I feel as though I definitely wasted a few weeks just plodding along instead of actually trying. 

If I were to give any tips to today’s newbies, I would definitely say don’t be afraid to try new things, you will never know what they’re like until you try them. I think I am a great example of this because I always had the mindset of “I don’t like OPA, I’m never going to join OPA.” and I was just so negative about the office but here I am, A/CO PO. I joined as a regular member and after finally seeing how good the office is and what you can learn from it, I decided I wanted to go for a command position. In addition to that, it’s important that you ask for help when you need it. I know I was scared to ask for help when I first joined and everyone seemed so serious and professional but I quickly learned that everyone was supportive. There are many avenues to take to get help whether that be visiting the information desk in HQ, speaking with your office or branch command or even utilizing the Reach Out Program (ROP). 

Thank you for taking your time to read this article, I hope you don’t make the same noob mistakes as I did. Remember it’s okay to be “clueless” at first but always ask for help, if you need it!

Singin’ in the Rain

By krizzycatt

Cover by krizzycatt

Today was a rough day. I was sighing far too much. Clutching my belongings, I was forcefully made to remove myself from my office desk. Each footstep felt heavy, and I was feeling downright horrible. I mindlessly wandered across miles and miles on my way home, the home I have not been to in 8 years.

Not long after, I passed by the park near my house. Then, Mary ran up to me. We had known each other since we were just children. How time flies, we are now in our early twenties. I still remember when we used to dance and sing at this exact park. It was many moons ago. I remember how graceful her footsteps were and how melodious she made the melody seem. It was absolutely enchanting, but alas, I moved to another state due to circumstances and only recently came back as I had run out of money.

“Let’s dance, like before!” Mary exclaimed. Like a puppy she sensed my sadness and knew something was up. 

“What?!” I exclaimed internally, “Does she think we are young, carefree children again?!” My youth was long gone and I was no longer that young boy. However, she still dragged me into the park. She played a song on her phone and we started waltzing gently to the music on the large grass patch devoid of flowers. We were getting many stares, but she tilted her head and stared into my eyes, as though telling me, “Just look at me”.

“How is Auntie Jenny doing? What are you doing back here?” Mary asked innocently. I could not bear to tell her the truth. After all, when my mother was alive, they were very close.

“Doing just fine. I’m here for a work trip. I will be staying at my old flat for a while.” I brushed her remarks off, but deep down I had a heavy heart. I didn’t feel like talking about it.

As if heaven was making fun of me, it rained shortly after. I was about to rush into the shelter to hide from the rain, but Mary held me back. She played another song on her phone which she said was “the most perfect song for this occasion”. It was, of course, none other than Singin’ in the Rain. We danced, and she sang wonderfully as always. I never understood how her voice could be so mesmerising.

She held onto my hands and guided me as we danced, sang and ran around the grass. The stubborn side of me wanted to hate this activity, but the child in me was screaming in delight. This brought back so many memories, good memories, memories with Mary from when I was nothing but a child. I didn’t even realise how much I missed her.

The gushing down of the rain gradually turned into the soft dripping of raindrops. It was such a calming sound. Mary and I lay down on the soft wet grass, exhausted yet happy after hours of dancing. She looked me deep in my eyes and I could not help but look back at her. Her eyes, they were a deep blue colour, a colour so unique I will never forget. She was soaked and dishevelled but still beautiful. My heart felt light and happy, and I could relate to the song on an intimate level now. I never want this moment with Mary to end. 

“I’m really sorry for what happened that year Mary, I didn’t mean to leave you there alone,” I said… tears welling in my eyes.

“It’s not your fault, Jeffery. You had to leave with your mother. It was a dangerous time. I understand,” Mary smiled. We both sat up and continued to stare at each other. I pulled Mary tightly into an embrace. 

“I’m sorry for lying. My mother died a week ago. Killed by the same people that made us flee when I was a child,” I started sobbing uncontrollably, Mary comforting me in silence as I spoke. “They threatened my employer where I was working to burn down the entire building if I was not fired immediately.” 

“Mary, why do we have to be born in such a war-laden country? All I wanted was a peaceful life with the ones I loved. I did not choose to be the son of a fallen gang leader. I just wanted a peaceful life with you. I love you, I really do. I’m so sorry for leaving you in that horrible place.”

“You had to, don’t worry about it. I love you too.”

I hugged Mary tightly. I never want to let her go again, but there was something off about the hug.

“Mary… Mary…. didn’t they get you too, how did you survive? I thought they captured and killed you 5 years ago! It was reported in the news!”

“Hey wake up! No sleeping in the park, homeless man!” A scream awoke me. There I was, sitting on the park bench, clutching the items I was forcibly made to remove from the office desk. Mary was nowhere to be seen and just like that, I was alone again.

Yes Man

By idolayainerz

Cover by idolayainerz

Without a doubt, USDF offers a wide range of career paths for everyone to try. Career progression is something that makes USDF unique among other militaries and agencies within the Habbo Floors. Today, we have an exclusive interview consisting of a number of different questions presented to a number of diverse USDF personnel, coming from both Warrant Officer and Officer ranks. Join me in learning more about their experiences and taking valuable lessons within their responses.

What offices have you been in? What was your first office and why did you join it?

“I won’t be trying to count the number of offices I have been in as that’s a little difficult. However, I have been in OJFD, OSEAC, OJSIG, OOT&E, OSP&C, OISA and OPA. During my service in OSD, I was also honoured to be given the chance to oversee OJAG and OMP. JDT and Titans are also two very fun sub-offices that I have managed to be a part of in USDF! The listed offices I mentioned was in chronological order actually, so OJFD was my first ever office. Coming from an agency background, I always enjoyed training new recruits and helping out users who are new to Habbo and joining an agency for the first time. I also enjoyed the FEAT sessions I attended as an enlisted, so naturally I did not hesitate to apply for OJFD the moment I got my forums account.”

~ Capt PearIyn

“I have been in OJFD, OMP, OISA, OSEAC, OPA… so 5 offices. When I was E4, I only had 2 options then – OPA and OJFD. I think I was honestly really terrified to join OPA since I am a pure science student IRL. Therefore, I decided to join OJFD. Another reason was because I found training people really cool and since OJFD focused a lot on giving FEATs, I thought it was perfect for me!”

~ OC krizzycatt

“I have been in 3 offices at USDF- OPA, OMP, and OISA. My first office was OPA. I joined because I had the most experience in that area from other militaries, and I overall enjoyed working on projects. I loved how busy it was, there was always things to do. The Command team was great, and there was always someone to talk to.”

~ CWO3 RusticPenguin

What’s your favourite office and why?

“Wow. This is a difficult question. My favourite office would probably be OPA. It’s funny I say this given that OPA is actually the office I have been in for the shortest, but in the short time I’ve been here, I have learnt several new skills and met so many talented people. OJSIG and OOT&E are close seconds though!!

~ Capt PearIyn

“OISA is definitely my favourite office as both command and a RM. The reason is that with it being such a small office, everyone within the Command team as well as the whole office is really close with each other, and accepting. [In OISA] I really like how encouraging, supportive and acknowledging everyone is; everyone’s achievements are never unnoticed. I also really enjoy all the duties Command and RMs get to do such as events, newsletters, mentorship and much more as it gives us a way to bond and learn from one another. A big reason as to why OISA is my favourite so far is that the duties and experience don’t feel like a chore. It feels like you’re working with friends and family, and all the relationships you build with those in other agencies is definitely a positive experience. I really enjoy working with foreign entities, and just learning about how other agencies run, and I get to see how eager they are to learn and meet people from USDF. OISA command has also allowed me to help members with their safety, wellbeing and goal setting. So in general, my WHY for OISA, will be the people, the experiences, that collaboration is more important than cooperation, and no one is unnoticed, safety of members and ourselves, counselling and being able to help in any way.”

~ 2ndLt Lottie2411

“With the experience I have, for now I choose OMP. This is the office I’m currently in and I haven’t been here that long, but I already like it. In OMP, there are very many things I can do, starting from updating MPTS, handling transfers, and other things. Another thing that I love is the people who are in the OMP, it can’t be argued that they are really fun, I really like how omp-chat is always buzzing and fun.”

~ CW4 Xylanneal

How do you seize opportunities, do you wait for them to pass by or do you create them?

“I prefer to create my own opportunities through consistency. I value consistency when it comes to performance as those that will continually work hard in order to achieve something that isn’t there yet usually have a better mindset than those who perform only when there is a chance they will be rewarded. Let’s say that you will apply for a Command position when it opens up, your application process should begin at that moment, not when you submit an Expression of Interest.”

~ Maj IonDABeast

“For me in terms of opportunities for career progression, I used to just wait for Command positions to open, before thinking if I should apply. It came to a point where my friends all had Command positions/progressing and I was just stuck there, in OJFD. I think it was only last year when I came back, when I seriously started to plan and see which offices I am interested in and start as a regular member to understand the mechanics of the office before applying for Command. In a way, I have changed from waiting for opportunities to pass by to creating my own opportunities to shine and show my office Command what I was capable of in that process.”

~ OC krizzycatt

“I try and jump at any opportunity I can. I’m always working on things and trying to create them for myself just to push myself towards improving. I have never been to OISA before. When their apps opened up for HNCO, I applied, and got appointed. It was tough learning an office straight as Command, but it is something I am glad that I did.”

~ CWO3 RusticPenguin

Would you advise others to stay or join offices for progression or for passion?

“Definitely passion over progression. USDF is built in a way that allows you to progress wherever you are, some faster some slower but everyone progresses eventually. It is important that you are working because you want to, not because you have to, otherwise this might start feeling more like a chore and not a game. Doing something you are passionate about will make your experience more enjoyable and it will make you want to advance even further. Whereas doing something because you have to will usually cause burnout and demotivation which is counterproductive.

~ Maj IonDABeast

“I think that would differ for each person. Most of the people in USDF are passionate to progress, so if that is your priority, then go for it and try applying to offices where you intend to progress in and/or apply for Command positions. Never compromise on your enjoyment passion though, or you might find yourself burnt out soon.”

~ Capt PearIyn

What an insightful read coming from our USDF personnel, truly a lot of wisdom was shared. Career progression in USDF is never similar from one person to another, we pave our own paths and these diverse offices help us towards achieving our set goals. 

Sausage Party

By Horus

Cover by chiari.cord

There are tons of different variations of sausages around the world, almost every culture has its own way of creating them to suit their taste buds. But which sausages are the ones that take the prize? The following sausages are not only delicious, but they are also versatile enough to use in almost any dish! Behold, the Hall of Fame for sausages! As a fun bonus, I will be rating their ability to fight, just like in the movie “Sausage Party”!

5. Chinese Sausage

Last but definitely not least on this list is the Chinese sausage! This is personally one of my favourites as it’s very different from other sausages listed here. It is well known by its Cantonese name ‘lap cheong’. This sausage dates back over 1500 years and it started off as a way to preserve meat, with this legacy continuing today. It has a very distinctive sweet and savoury flavour to it and always has a hard or tough texture. It is best served or prepared with fried rice and some sweet soy sauce!

Fight rating: 4 out of 5 – Chinese sausages usually come in multiples, so they can work together in the fight! Though, they are all tied together, so that’s a minus one on mobility.

4. Italian Sausage 

The Italian sausage, incredibly popular in a number of states in America, is a pork sausage with a fennel and anise mixture as its base. This sausage is made flavourful, moist and finished with sweet basil. The most popular purpose for the Italian sausage is for it to be grilled or roasted, it is definitely a must-try on everyone’s list if you’ve not had it before!

Fight rating: 3 out of 5 – They are pretty short, and that’s a disadvantage because they can’t see from a higher perspective. However, they can dodge punch and hit pretty easily!

3. Chorizo

Famously known as the Spanish Chorizo, it is usually made with paprika, garlic, herbs and white wine. Similar to the Andouille sausage, it is a smoked sausage and can be consumed without having to cook it, but you still can! They are mostly made from pork and put into casings, fermented and cured for several weeks. One interesting fact about this is that you can also remove chorizo from its casing and cook it like you would with minced meat!

Fight rating: 3 out of 5 – Nothing special about this fighter! Though, its smell of garlic and herbs can easily overpower everyone else’s.

2. Bratwurst 

Bratwurst sausages are next up on the list because of how popular they are around the world, but originally from Germany. ‘Brat’ means finely chopped meat, and ‘wurst’ simply means sausage. It was invented a long time ago as a way to utilize scraps of meat that otherwise wouldn’t have been used, this is a clever way to use every part of pork and it has stuck with us ever since! Other than pork, bratwurst can be made from veal or beef making this sausage versatile.

Fight rating: 4 out of 5 – These guys are real solid, their punches could knock another sausage out instantly. The only disadvantage would be their height.

1. Andouille

Originally from France, Andouille is almost always ranked at least top 3 on all-time favourite sausages! Why? We might wonder… This is because Andouille is known for its immensely pungent and strong taste that appeals to most people with its spicy, smoked flavour. It has also made its way into the Cajun cuisine as a staple food for many. Because it’s a smoked sausage, it is precooked and can be cut and served cold. Its flexibility allows it to be a dish that can be easily served to guests, say if you have forgotten to prepare for a party!

Fight rating: 5 out of 5 – It is possible for this sausage to be bigger than the rest of the sausages here. That gives it an obvious advantage, it would be pretty hard to destroy it. 

This is just a small peek into the range of sausages offered to us by the world’s many different cultures. Have you ever tried any of these sausages, or do you like the sound of them? Which sausage would you bring to a fight?

Word Search

Libertarian Game

A Series of Unfortunate Events

By lauraemilyy

Cover by loozone

No matter how experienced you are at something, you’re bound to still slip up from time to time, creating scenarios which are quite embarrassing while they’re happening, but make for funny stories later on. USDF is so complex, and with that comes a vast amount of information to soak up, so mistakes are (unsurprisingly) fairly common. This is both a blessing and a curse as you don’t feel alone when something inevitably happens to you. 

I think the one of my many USDF mistakes that pained me the most was when I let a troll into HQ. I was chilling on sentry, it was very late, and I wasn’t fully concentrating as I was in a Voice Channel at the time; although my brain was probably fried anyway from sleep deprivation. At that, a ‘member’ of an allied organisation stepped onto my rollers. I checked the badge they were wearing against those listed on the International Entry Permit (IEP), and of course it was on there. I double checked the creator of the badge and it was different to the one listed, but I’d heard that the organisation was making use of some old badges since the release of beta, so I thought everything was okay. Alas, after asking the personnel I was in Voice Chat with to double check, I let the member in. 

As soon as they got one step away from the sentry gate, they changed their chat colour to red and started dancing/spamming. Room rights were requested and attempts were made by a few personnel to move the troll into the FEAT/IRDT rooms, but the troll was having none of it and continued to be highly distracting, having the time of their life. Thankfully, I wasn’t on shift at the time so, out of pure embarrassment, I just closed Habbo completely. I can’t sit and watch that unfold, I was thinking, so I just waited for room rights to do their thing before I dared show my face in HQ again. 

That was on the rough side, though. Thankfully, not all unfortunate events within USDF are that heavy. One more comical event which I’m sure is quite common, is having to wait forever for the mannequins in AMT to finally cooperate and step on the tile so you can say the magic word. When I was completing AMT, I was waiting for what felt like an age, my trainer even disconnected and made it back to the room before I moved onto the next area. Luckily, neither my trainer nor myself were in a rush, so we just sat there giggling and waiting patiently for the mannequin to stop dancing around the tile.

I think no matter how long you’ve been around in USDF, we’ve all had our fair share of “whisper fails”, and the level of embarrassment can vary a lot with that one. My most memorable whisper fail has to be during the start of a Watch4Me talks stream; I had to watch my chat slowly travel up the screen in real time, and then again while watching the stream on Twitch.

To summarize, no matter how big or small your slip ups may be, we’ve all been there at some point and all you can do is laugh it off and learn from the experience.

Pan’s Labyrinth

By Horus & loozone

Cover by loozone

Every year on the 8th of March, people all over the world celebrate International Women’s Day. This year, OPA organized an International Women’s Day trivia and maze event to celebrate women. The trivia was an educational one about four notable women who inspired many. The women who were featured were Florence Nightingale, Maya Angelou, The Mirabal Sisters, and Queen Elizabeth I. After solving the beautiful trivia rooms, everyone had to go through a snake and banzai maze to complete the entire game.

Many people showed up to the event to play fun games, socialise, and most importantly, to celebrate this special occasion. CWO3 Air_Chris_2 (chris81258) said, “It is very important to celebrate this occasion because there are a lot of women from the past and present who have done a whole lot to help change the world and make it a better place. It is important to recognize those who have made an impact in this world.”

It is true, women from all over the world have done many great things in history, and the women featured in this trivia were great examples of women who have contributed to the progression of health, rights, social customs and so much more. When we asked CWO2 karihyun to name the woman he finds most inspiring, he said “Emma Watson – she always gives inspiring speeches about feminism and how men can play a part in empowering women. As a man, I find it inspiring that she gives these speeches for me to educate myself more of the movement and so that I can be a stronger ally to the cause. I think she’s very inspirational to other guys as well.”

Capt jacob3172 named his own mother as one of the most inspiring women. How thoughtful of him! “The event was fun, engaging and educational, everyone definitely learnt a thing or two about these four inspiring women,” said Capt jacob3172. “It allowed me to expand my knowledge on notable women over the years. This is an important subject for everyone to be educated on and I believe this event helped achieve that.”

This event has definitely allowed many of our personnel to learn more about International Women’s Day and after conducting the interview myself, it is almost as if I have experienced it from their perspectives as well. It has been really enriching for me and has taught me to be more grateful towards all the women around me.

Personally, I really agree with jacob3172 who named his mother as one of his inspirations. Day in day out, I think it is very easy for most of us to forget the big sacrifices that the women in our lives have made for us. I just know that I would not be who I am and where I am today, if not for my mother. I could not be any prouder of my mom and all the other moms and women out there who have nurtured and inspired so many of us.

Thank you to all the women to change the world – even just by existing!

The Queen’s Gambit

By loozone

Cover by PearIyn

Have you all watched The Queen’s Gambit yet? I have, and I think it’s a beautiful show with a strong and unique plot. The period drama follows chess prodigy Beth Harmon as she becomes one of the best chess players in America, and probably even internationally. I really liked this character because of how she still ended up being a winner even after all the things that she went through (no spoilers here!). A while ago, I was made aware that we have our own Beth Harmon in USDF! It is none other than Capt ,-Spell. Let’s learn more from her about chess.

Hey Captain ,-Spell! Recently, you’ve been dubbed the USDF Chess Queen. How do you feel about this?

S: “Hi! Honestly, it’s really nice. However, I have to say I do feel it’s a bit inflated. At the end of the day, I believe I’m just a beginner who happens to be better than those I play against the majority of the time (no offence guys 😉). It’s nice to be good at something and for people to recognise it.”

You’re arguably USDF’s best chess player. When did you learn to play chess, and how?

S: “I learned to play basic chess when I was a child, around the age of five or six. I learned how the pieces move and all that jazz. I picked it up again around October last year and have been using online resources, such as, to help me improve.”

I see, how many times have you played chess on Habbo?

S: “I’ve played two chess tournaments on Habbo so far, and hopefully many more to come!

Have you played any tournaments in real life?

S: “I have not. I started playing chess again during the pandemic, so there haven’t really been any over-the-board tournaments in my area. I also don’t feel good enough, yet, to make a tournament worthwhile. However, I think if I continue to improve, I will be able to place well at one later this year—that is if there’s one where I live!

All the best to you if you do! I know that you’ve watched The Queen’s Gambit and that you’re quite a fan. Do you agree with Beth Harmon from The Queen’s Gambit who says that chess can be beautiful?

S: “Yes, definitely. There’s a game called “The Evergreen Game” between Adolf Anderssen and Jean Dufresne in 1852 that I, and many others, think is a really beautiful one, especially the mate at the end with the two bishops.

You seem to know your way around this game very well. What is the thought process that you go through before making each move?

S: “The first step is not what move you’re going to make, but looking at how your opponent has just moved. You have to ask yourself what your opponent is threatening, or what they could be planning. If this threat is particularly intimidating, then obviously you need to stop it—at least for a bit, without blundering anything in the process. If the opponent isn’t threatening anything, then you need to think about the following:

What are my checks? Are they any good? What’s a possible continuation? Would this continuation lead to me getting a better position or gaining material? If the end position looks positive, then go with the move. If not, then you move onto the next step in the hierarchy.

What are my captures? Am I attacking any piece with more pieces than are defending it? Will it give me a better position? Again, if it looks positive, then go with it. If not, move down the list.

Finally, what are your attacking moves? Can you attack anything? Can you threaten anything? Can you launch a pawn storm to weaken your opponent’s king? If the answer to any of these questions is “yes” and it looks worthwhile, do it.

As you can see, it’s quite a long process. In time controls like bullet chess and blitz chess, it isn’t always possible. So, my advice for those time controls is simply play fast and solid. Try not to blunder anything, and if you see an opportunity to attack, take it!

Wow, that’s a lot of thinking!

S: “It is, but it comes easier in the brain than it looks in words!

In your most recent Habbo chess match, you were defeated by another player. How do you feel about losing in a match? Do you feel demotivated?

S: “I was a little bummed out as anyone would be when they don’t win, but not at all in the overall scheme of things. I have played over 1500 games of chess online and have lost around 700 of them. You just have to pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and try again. Though, it’s easier said than done!

Well said, I think in everything we do, we have to accept defeat and try to be better the next time. Do you have anything to say to our readers regarding demotivation, be it in USDF or in real life?

S: “Demotivation is hard and it affects everyone at one point or another. If you ever feel demotivated, like I said, it’s easier said than done to just move on. Sometimes, you have to remind yourself of all the positives that have come out of whatever that’s making you feel demotivated, and try and enjoy it again. I’ve been through demotivation myself, and sometimes, it’s also important to take a break, however long it may be. I experienced demotivation and left USDF a few years ago until I came back in July, and look at me now! I’m an Officer—something I never thought I’d achieve.

That’s all for our interview with Capt ,-Spell, the USDF Chess Queen! She gave a very good piece of advice in the end, I hope you will all keep her words in mind, and I also hope that you all gained a bit of knowledge about chess.

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

By lauraemilyy

Cover by loozone

On both the 20th and 21st of March 2021, OPA held a special event as a way to welcome the beginning of spring time in a celebratory fashion. Named the “Spring Equinox Event”, each day consisted of two games of Flower Cart Race with awesome prizes available to the winners. To fill you in, the aim of the game is to race across a sort of “no man’s land” area of random Banzai teleporters, find the flower matching the one in the host’s hand, and make it back to the other side, with the last one to reach the other side out of the game.

Around an hour prior to this event on the 20th, HQ started to fill up and from that moment I knew this event was going to be popular. Once at ease was called, my suspicions turned out to be true as personnel from both R&R, and HQ positions rushed to line up in front of the tele. After making our way into the event room, we all took our starting positions and tensions began to rise as we listened carefully to the game rules. 

This event was certainly entertaining for both the players and spectators, as there were a few moments where I’m sure everyone’s heart rate sped up a little. One moment which was particularly rife with tension was during the first few minutes of the very first game, where SgtMaj Nichilismo was brutally knocked out of the game by TSgt Big-Boss-Zen, who made his way back to his seat a split second before the SgtMaj.

After this impressive round, TSgt Big-Boss-Zen ended up making it to the final 3 alongside CWO4 XxBamItsMadixX and CWO5 yasswer4321, with XxBamItsMadixX eventually taking the win and a HC box as the reward. As well as the tense moments, there were a few unfortunate moments where a number of players including myself had false starts thus were disqualified from the game, and also some acts of heroism where players would purposefully lose a round so their friend could stay in the game. 

Upon interviewing winner CWO4 XxBamItsMadixX, she stated that spring is her favourite season as it represents rebirth/regeneration, which is one reason I also love spring time as I love seeing blossom trees in bloom. Regarding her win, she claimed that this was the first time she’d ever won an event game, and gave the following inspirational speech, “I would like to thank not only the banzai tiles for accepting my bribe but also the flower carts for blessing me.”

Overall, this event was a great success and everyone who helped bring it to life should be extremely proud!


By princess81818

Cover by PearIyn

I’m sure we all know the pandemic hasn’t been kind to the movie industry. There have been delays after delays not only for production, but also movie releases. What I want to cover in this article is my top 7 highly anticipated movies which have had their release dates delayed due to the pandemic and as such what I am looking forward to finally seeing. Well six movies and one amazing TV show because well, it’s too amazing not to mention. 

A Quiet Place II 

The highly anticipated sequel to the successful first movie, The Quiet Place. An incredible movie which I remember seeing at the cinema and loving the suspense and story line. I won’t go into the plot as I don’t want to spoil it for anyone who hasn’t seen the first, but what I can say it revolves around a family who have managed to survive an alien race invasion who have excellent hearing. So survivors can’t make a sound. The Quiet Place II has been delayed 3 times now and is due for release on the 17th September 2021. I really would highly recommend seeing this movie, and yes it is a horror movie with a PG13 rating.

Death on the Nile 

Our favourite French, sorry Belgium, detective, Hercule Poirot is back! This movie has a brilliant cast from Gal Gadot (Wonder Woman) and Rose Leslie (GoT) to Kenneth Branagh (Hamlet) and follows a suspicious murder which of course means Poirot is needed to figure out who did it! If you haven’t already, I’d recommend watching the prequel ‘Murder on the Orient Express’ which is a fascinating beginning to these new movie releases from what was the original TV show. which some may know of. Its release has been pushed back 4 times and will be released worldwide on the 17th September 2021. 

Godzilla vs Kong 

I absolutely love Godzilla, I’ve seen all the recent releases from Godzilla: King of the Monsters to King Kong and I really can’t wait to see this one. There have been a fair few Godzilla and King Kong movies, 36 in the Godzilla franchise and 12 in the King Kong Franchise! These recent movies have really captured my interest and love that they are bringing both these powerhouses together for what I hope is an action packed movie. Its release has been delayed 5 times and is now scheduled to be released internally on the 24th March 2021. Now I don’t know if this time it’ll stick as quite a number of countries are still in some type of lockdown but we can only hope. 

Avatar 2 

Now where do I start? I have actually lost count how many times Avatar 2 has been delayed. Even before the pandemic it was constantly delayed and pushed back to the point some of us may have wondered if it will ever be released. Its release has been delayed 6 times now and I have a feeling it may be further delayed. When Avatar was released in 2009 (yonks ago now) it really brought something new and exciting to the movie industry but also a hard hitting message of overpopulation, mining and damage to the planet which has resulted in a mission to a far away planet to mine their natural resources but also attempt to learn their ways of life. But of course it all goes horribly wrong and the habitants of the planet (Na’vi). Its release is now set for the 16th December 2022, after it’s original release which was meant to be December 2014.

James Bond – No Time to Die 

James Bond is back and continues to save the world! This will be Daniel Craig’s last appearance as James Bond and I have high expectations for this to be a nail biter. James Bond is known to all, in how he introduces himself, his swagger and ability to escape all situations and survive without a scratch in an immaculate suit. I am really looking forward to finding out why he’s back, who the latest villain is and what they managed to do on a $250 million budget (wow). Every time a new James Bond movie comes out, I’ve always gone to the cinema to watch it as I feel sometimes the small screen just doesn’t do it justice. Its release has been delayed 5 times, although the first 2 times were not due to the pandemic. Its release is now scheduled for the 8th October 2021 internationally. Although there is an earlier release for us in the UK of 30th September 2021. Woo!

Black Widow 

Now, I’ll admit I’m not much of a Marvel Fan (hides) but I am really looking forward to this release. I’ve watched a few of the other movies but I kind of lost track of what was going on, who was who and in what order to watch them. However, I did find that I really gravitated towards Black Widow, and her strength and resilience was awesome to watch. Also helped that she regularly kicked arse and always seemed to be the voice of reason. Its release has only been delayed 2 times which isn’t bad, and is now scheduled to be released on the 7th May 2021 in America. There is some speculation that Disney may release it on their streaming service, Disney+ if delays continue. 

The Witcher

Okay, so, yes this isn’t a movie but I can’t do an article without mentioning one of my obsessions. Now if you haven’t watched the first season I would highly recommend you binge watch it, available on Netflix. Especially if you are a Game of Thrones fan. The storyline, costumes and effects are outstanding and I was hooked from the first episode. I won’t lie and say I’m a fan of the game series, as I’ve never played them, but what first drew me to the show was, who was playing the main character, Henry Cavill. Please proceed to Google and thank me later! While no official release date was set, it was expected to be released a year after the first season (December 2021), however. this has been delayed and now expected sometime this year. I will of course be taking a few days off so I can binge watch when it is available!

The Pursuit of Happyness


Cover by loozone

In my short stay in USDF, there were plenty of sensations I could describe as happiness. Many of them were carried by expectation for promotions, new FEATs and searching for praise and compliments from my peers. Psychology, however, describes expectation as a predecessor of a possible frustration. Sometimes, when the promotion does not come, for example, our breach of expectation makes some of us even give up on our military.

That’s the reflection I believe the movie Pursuit of Happiness has to offer to USDF; are you expecting happiness, or trying to actually live it? First of all, I should say no amount of guilt can change the past, and no amount of anxiety can change the future, that is, the past is already a fact and the future is yet to be, both are out of your control. Only the present is at your full domain. 

Like the protagonists, live as if there was no yesterday to be ashamed of, and no future to be anxious for. Today is the day to be happy in our headquarters! Our military is full of opportunities, games, people to talk to, and different ways to learn and create. It’s a place to make friends, to evolve your talents within offices, and even expand on our intercultural relations between personnel. 

Furthermore, no matter what your job is, you can always make it more interesting. Confucius (a Chinese philosopher) used to say, “choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life”.

With that in mind, if you’re at the welcome desk, don’t make it repetitive, create new ways of welcoming the personnel, maybe through some puns and jokes. If you are manning the bar, don’t just stay there! Talk to everyone that sits on the other side of your bar, and if no one comes, bring some food or drinks for those in HQ. If you are manning sentry, of course a lot of your concentration will be compromised, but a “good morning/afternoon/evening” will surely make everyone’s day more enjoyable. If you are filling the front row, don’t make it the same boring process of recruiting when you can make our future peers more comfortable and confident. In summary, there’s always a way to feel happy and, as importantly, make others feel happy too!

Life is a constant pursuit of happiness, and your job at USDF must be no different. If you did something wrong, or didn’t understand a certain order, don’t let that discourage you! Likewise, if you expected something that didn’t happen, don’t let frustration wash over you! Live as you existed in an eternal present, because you do! Happiness is always in the present, patiently waiting in this eternal moment, only to be found, and lived.

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