Federations

Man, it’d be great if all of the online worlds could be federated somehow.

In my imagination…

The Death Star pops out of hyperspace a million klicks from the Planet of the Hello Kitties. “Now witness the power of this fully operational, planet-busting coolness,” chortles the Emperor. The Emperor is a pimply fourteen year old with a cracking voice in Detroit; he gets beat up at school, now it’s his turn to do it to the defenseless onliners. On the internet, no one can tell that you’re not getting laid. Well, mostly.

The Death Star reactors power up. Gigantic relays trip, row after row of displays show frantic activity, and the cascade of destruction starts to build….

The Kitties have seen this before. Yawn. They are not without their defenses. They’ve contracted out some of the grunt-work, but they have their own, unique tricks, in tasteful pastels. They don’t even look up from their play.

Swarms of happy ground-to-space bees launch from cute pink-and-orange beehives. They’re hypersonic in the first couple of meters, and they leave neat vertical contrails that extend to the top of the atmosphere. The bees do dive-bomb attacks on the Death Star, peppering it with honeypots that explode with tremendous force, but it’s the flowers they lay down that do the real damage. The blossoms are full of nanobots that boil forth and start ripping away the hull of the battle station. Before the teenager can finish his countdown, the nanos have gone through generations of geometric multiplication, and there is a massive explosion that is barely contained by the viewers’ video cards.

Really don’t mess around with the Kitties.

“C’mon, Kitties,” pleads the emperor from his spinning-out-of-control lifecraft, “Join the dark side, it’s more fun than those stupid stick-up-their-butts Jedi. And we’ve got this Muad’Dib guy from the Dune franchise who has this really cool jihad going against the losers on the EverQuest servers. You’ll like napalming the elves, you really will…”

The teenager doesn’t see the missile that vaporizes his raft and knocks him offline, but for sure the missile was cute, and probably left a heart-shaped cloud in the Kitty sky.

Meanwhile, a group of advanced level 99 Everquest crack addicts have gotten themselves lost in the nether regions between Mario and World of Warcraft. “Look,” one of them argues, “If we go through this door, we face evil Bob-ombs and exploding mushrooms, but we have only four minutes to complete the level. The other door leads to the WOW beta.”

“Mushrooms?”

“Mushrooms.”

“So, what’s wrong with beta? We can do beta, we’ve been doing it for years.”

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