Confessions of a Legionnaire – A Bad Company 2 Legion of Honor Story
The sun shone brightly, a gentle breeze fluttering the leaves above me. Snow crunched beneath my boots and the blue hues glinting all around left me cold, the M-14 in my hands feeling even more real as I scanned the horizon of Port Valdez. I spiked my buddy with an ammo crate as I spouted into the mic with a grin, “just keep spamming those candygrams (our lingo for motion mines).”
I may not have been able to see it, but I imagined Jamez looking up at me with a wink as he intoned, ”left-flank recon set” which was my cue to haul back to the townhouse, up to the second floor window overlooking both the ridge and Alpha crate. I had barely set up my fire lane when the mini map lit up a candygram tango-dance. My headset came alive with simultaneous calls of, ”CONTACT left!”
That’s when the shooting started.
I fired on a silhouette and watched it drop as I hollered out and heard similar calls of “tango down.” I saw the lazy trail of a rocket burst from our rear as a callout buzzed over comms that no ground-pounder wants to hear on the battlefield, “Heavy tank rolling up the main road” followed by a new gut-wrenching call, ”he blew our mines! Dig in. Spawn on Ben and bring rockets.”
It was somewhere around the completion of “…spawn on…” that the building I was in erupted around me in a cloud of dust and a blood-red tinged screen. “Incoming on Bravo crate!” Shapes moved around me. I fired. Comms were blazing about the tank. I watched the counter on my M-14 rounds tick to zero. I heard distant explosions rip the day apart. How was I still alive? Hadn’t I been on the second floor? Switching over to my sidearm I plowed 5 rounds into the dusty hole that used to be my cover, watching hit markers light up around an emerging red beret as the enemy medic’s PKM lit me up. We both went down in a hail of bullets.
And that was my first 30 seconds in the Legion of Honor.
The Legion is a community of gamers, built by gamers that all share one express directive in common–Fun First. As a mission statement, it seems almost implicit in its obviousness for a gaming clan. Yet, more often than not, this defining statement guides not only what we do, but how we do it and whom we do it with. Our founder, LoH MCTJim had this to say on the topic, “we had a plan from the start, we had a vision and things change for the better everyday. New things are added almost daily. We have a great group of creative people here.”
Since those infamous first 30 seconds, we’ve built the Legion to several hundred members over several game platforms. But without doubt since our inception, Battlefield has remained one of our two largest game franchises. LoH Vader gave me her impression on being a founder the clan, “building and shaping Bad Company 2 into one of the strongest in our community was beyond rewarding and the members make it a great legion to lead and be a part of. My goal, at all times, has been to set the foundation for the citizens of the Legion to grow and appreciate the Battlefield experience.”
Part of our uniqueness is our process. From LoH MCTJim, “The Battlefield Legion has always been a big draw for our clan and community. We have a very hard working group of people that run that Legion. They are on top of everything. From recruiting to the end process of training them to become a member, this Legion and its staff are always looking for ways to improve and streamline the experience of the Legion; not only for the new Recruit, but for its own staff and current members. They all have a passion for what they do. Some of their policies have been implemented across all game franchises that we support. I constantly see their pride in the game and community shine through their work. I have seen the results personally and you can just tell they all love what they are doing.”
Every day I log into our site and welcome the newest Legionnaires of the clan to the Battlefield Legion, which inevitably leaves me in wonder over how we got so big and how we attract so many great members. Xx Cohoona xX and I were pondering, what do we really have in common? He had this to say, “I have been blessed with the opportunity to get to know many of the members of the Legion and I am astounded at the diversity in personalities and lifestyles, how few things we have in common. Despite this, we all treat each other with respect which is a hard quality to find in the online gaming realm. We all love to meet on Mondays and Wednesdays at 8Pm EST in order to throw resistance at the enemy, shoot some digital faces with a 40mm shotgun, and share some hearty laughter.”
That’s when it hits me. It’s not that we’re good players, though most of our Battlefield players are listed in the top 10,000 and several are up in the top 1,000. It’s also not that we’re all professional, our members range from executives to unemployed starving students. No, it’s also not that we all have a military background, though we have a veterans group that spans every armed service with combat vets from every conflict in the last 40 years. When we have members in good health, some are inevitably in poor health. When one is training for a sport, there is always another just plopping down on the couch. When I’m going to work, someone is coming home from it. Our Battlefield members alone span the globe. The sun literally never sets on the Legion of Honor.
The dichotomy of our members is a big part of the Legion’s strength. We come from all walks of life with vast differences between us socially, economically, racially, nationally and internet connectivally. When we get in game and participate in the shared experience of the Legion of Honor, we are one in our unanimous drive to have fun and support one another. It creates a brotherhood of players dedicated to having a good time and making sure our brothers are finding a good time as well. In the end that generally means we challenge one another to get better, we take down the other team, and we have a lot of laughs in the process. Many of us got started here because we were tired of being pwned by randoms that didn’t share our ideals. “Fun first” served as a rally cry to bring several hundred like minded gamers together under friendship.
I can barely begin to describe how wonderful it is to go into a game and test the mettle of the other team when I know the Legion has my back. I may have been downed in my first 30 seconds, but the battle had only just begun.
I was watching the kill cam hover around my corpse. ”Frag out!” came the call from Ben. A grenade flew into my former position, thudding explosively to be sure the room was clear. Through the smoke and dust a medic with a green name floating over his head bounded in, paddles in hand. “Zombie, standby for pickup!” The world went white for a moment and the thump of the defib paddles reverberated in my Turtle Beach’s. I was up, reanimated with three rounds in my sidearm. The smoke cleared in Bravo house and an eerie quiet settled around us.
We had repulsed the first wave. I dropped an ammo box and the points started to roll in as we all geared up for the next wave. ”Maddy, put some candygrams out towards the bottle neck.” The mini map instantly started to blip as the motion mines flew, acting as our early warning system. We knew we had a minute before the armor would re-spawn.
“Zombie, get your C4 on the road. A dollar says they come back up the middle.” With that, I flew out the door to set up the next defense.
While firefights are fun and overwhelmingly our most common experience, these aren’t the only moments I think of when I think of the Legion. I said before we have both executive office and unemployed members. Christmas can be rough if you fall into the latter category. One of the first Legion-wide events we held was a volunteer gift drive to help save Christmas for one of our members. I’m proud of that. I’m proud that we’re more than gaming compatriots. We have meet ups when time and distance allow. We offer advice to one another. We support members if we can–from which car to buy to ensuring Santa stops at every house with little Legionnaires in it. All we ask from our members is honorable intent. Yet we are constantly amazed with how, to a man, they exceed those expectations with honorable action.
We’ve been able to build this organization on friendships that have lasted for years. It creates a trust that we bestow on each member when they join. We welcome them to the trust of honor that is the Legion. It is for them to uphold what we’ve built by making them a part of the whole. To paraphrase from Henry the Fifth, “We few, we happy few, we band of brothers; for he today that sheds his pixels with me shall be my brother.”
Confessions of a Legionnaire
by LoH Zombie