The wise general knows that wars are not won on the battlefield, but that supply and planning truly make the difference. The hyper-granular realism of counting every bullet and ration favored by old wargames usually doesn’t find its way to videogames; it’s typically much more fun to zoom around Mars at 60mph vaporizing cacodemons with both barrels than to try and keep your battalions well-stocked through a winter march.
A commitment to that sort of realism seems to have had some unintended consequences for Siege Camp, the developers behind the wartime MMO Foxhole. Foxhole presents large-scale battles in a fictional world at a roughly World War II technology level, with players taking on the role of front-line soldiers, logistics workers, or saboteurs in massive battles that can last for weeks.
Logistics players in Foxhole engage in a gameplay loop reminiscent of survival games, collecting resources and transporting them to friendly factories to convert them into equipment for their fellow players. It may be less sexy than fighting on the front lines, but it’s interesting to see this sort of gameplay transposed to this context. Unfortunately, players who regularly take up the logistics role for their armies have grown dissatisfied with how it plays.
As reported by NME, 1800 Foxhole players have signed an open letter from the “Logistics Organization for General Improvement,” or LOGI, outlining eleven issues with the role they would like Siege Camp to address. The developer did not respond to LOGI by their deadline of January 10, so it’s organizers have requested that signees stop playing the logistics role, going “on strike” as it were and potentially starving players in other roles of ammunition, weapons, and the like.
Siege Camp has yet to offer an official response to the situation. A quick perusal of Foxhole’s steam reviews paints an overall positive picture, but the lonely negative reviews do single out the logistics role and its players’ treatment as a sore spot. It will be interesting to see how this ongoing “strike” affects Foxhole’s overall gameplay, and how Siege Camp will react, if at all. I’m reminded of the perennial stories of heists and capers in EVE Online, and I’d argue that LOGI potentially having the ability to influence the course of the game like this represents a kind of emergent gameplay that reflects well on Foxhole’s core design. Whatever the case, I wish LOGI well in their continuing proletarian struggle.