EVE Online Rogue’s Gallery: Istvaan Shogaatsu – The Corporate Infiltrator

Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some wait until the right moment to steal your greatness from you. Meet Istvaan.

If EVE Online is a sandbox for a patient, Machiavellian genius, then Istvaan Shogaatsu is its poster boy.

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His most famous exploit is perhaps one that propelled EVE Online into the minds of many, and undoubtedly resulted in attracting many players to the game. It is still talked about nearly a decade later.

In 2004, Istvaan and his corporation, the Guiding Hand Social Club, were hired to “utterly demolish Mirial and bring all who followed her to their knees in one fell swoop.” The corporation spent 10 months infiltrating her Ubiqua Seraph corporation in order to carry out the contract.

On 18th April 2005, Istvaan announced the success of a “meticulously planned, thoroughly flawless concerto of simultaneous corp-hangar heists, attacks in open space and facility invasions…” which saw 30 billion ISK (about $1,000 by today’s prices, but $16,500 according to the original PC Gamer article) worth of destruction to Mirial’s personal empire, including an ignominious “podding” of Mirial herself whilst wearing expensive implants.

The motivation for hiring the Guiding Hand Social Club was allegedly a personal grudge held against Mirial by their “employer” since EVE’s beta period.

The resulting press coverage was unprecedented, with hundreds of gaming industry column inches being devoted to the incident. After all, there was no finer example of EVE‘s emergent gameplay and freedom of action in a gaming sandbox. Nor was there a better case of “the evil that men do” in video gaming.

A Play for Power

Since that auspicious event, Istvaan has remained an active but shadowy figure amongst the EVE community, undoubtedly masterminded other infiltrations and heists. In 2009, he ran for a seat on the 3rd Council of Stellar Management, but failed to secure enough votes. Perhaps the voting EVE public were wary of putting someone of Shogaatsu’s calibre in a position of such overt influence (which is ironic, considering who did run a successful campaign and become a CSM representative, but that’s the next chapter in our Vault of Villains).

Perhaps it was Istvaan’s choice of opening gambit in his election campaign that ruined his chances:

“Good day. I’d like to announce that I’m running for CSM this term. I’d also like to announce something else.

I hate the vast majority of you.”

To be fair, it’s likely that he had no intention of succeeding, based on proposals such as:

“Asteroids will now scream in pain when mined, as well as beg for mercy. This will cause a horrible moral dilemma in the minds of carebears throughout Eve, causing many to contemplate suicide.”

And he certainly lost the risk-averse high-sec dwelling ‘carebear’ vote (but likely gained a fair few others) with:

“My supreme goal is to hurt as many carebears as possible, and I am a rather creative individual – if elected, you can be sure I will find a way.”

A Return to the Shadows

Istvaan Shogaatsu remains with Guiding Hand Social Club, and took part in last year’s New Eden Open PvP tournament. They didn’t do all that well, but being out in the open isn’t really what the Guiding Hand Social Club do, and the prize-offering livestream hosts Own3D did subsequently go bust. Coincidence?

Istvaan is an ever-present force in the EVE community, although his movements are understandably hard to track. He can most frequently be found stalking the Intergalactic Summit roleplaying forum.

Or possibly standing behind you as you read this.


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Author
Mat Westhorpe
Broken paramedic and coffee-drinking Englishman whose favourite dumb animal is an oxymoron. After over a decade of humping and dumping the fat and the dead, my lower spine did things normally reserved for Rubik's cubes, bringing my career as a medical clinician to an unexpectedly early end. Fortunately, my real passion is in writing and given that I'm now highly qualified in the art of sitting down, I have the time to pursue it. Having blogged about video games (well, mostly EVE Online) for years, I hope to channel my enjoyment of wordcraft and my hobby of gaming into one handy new career that doesn't involve other people's vomit.