In the Hive, just as with most other online clans, has a leader (some clans have several) that holds authority over all other members. In the Hive, as a xenomorph-based clan, has a supreme clan leader known as the Matriarch, a rank based on the Mother Queen xenomorph from extended Alien comics (the queen of queens). This rank of the clan is a one-and-only rank; only one Matriarch can be the Hive leader at a time, as was started by the initial (zeroth) Matriarch DARKWOLFPHOENIX. The only time this was not the case was when Creators (as the term Matriarch had yet to be started) BURNING-WITCH_, BadassOfDOD, and CHAKRAMMblade acted as a triumvirate and created the Hive Clan back in 2010. Their combined power equated to the modern abilities of the singular Matriarch. So far, there have only been 5 named Matriarchs (technically 8 leaders historically, 3 of which not dubbed "Matriarch" in the revised history by BadassOfDOD), each adding to the Clan more and more with each leader.
The Matriarch is the most-respected member of the clan, and all ranks answer to this leader. Even the special ranks of Monarch, Deacon, Empress, Queen, and King answer to the Matriarch. Right below Matriarchs in authority, though, are Monarchs, pseudo-Matriarch leaders set in charge of a particular sector of the Hive. Below them are the Empresses, the lowest members of the Hive's Council, the highest authority of the Clan. The Matriarch and Monarchs together act as the Hive High Council, a subgroup within the Council. Under the Council lies the Deacons, then Queens, then Kings, then all other members of natural rank. As the supreme authority, Matriarchs have all of the abilities of the other subleader ranks and more: they can openly rank up and rank down Hive members, control all smaller groups of the clan, get elite training (although they should be dominant in melee and should be acting as teachers), host any Hive event, change clan rules, approve new Clan ideas (games, modes, or rounds), and issue any form of punishment to members (downranking, suspension, exilement) in the clan. There are only 2 Hive events in total that the Matriarch cannot host: Academy rounds (hosted only by the Hive General) and the Monarch round (hosted only by the respective Monarch of a sector).
However, with this grand power indeed comes great responsibility. The Matriarch must keep in contact with the Hive Wiki's editors and tell them of any changes in the Clan, or have the ability to edit the Wiki themselves. The ranks of every single Hive member is also kept track of personally by the Matriarch, Monarchs, and some Empresses, not on the Members page of the Wiki.
Becoming a Matriarch is not easy; originally, only a Matriarch round was required before the time of italian-stal. However, current security protecting the Matriarch has made it a lot more difficult to make it to this supreme rank. This new, multi-step process to becoming Matriarch has been dubbed the Matriarch Road, and contains the following:
- Guardian round -- this is the Prematriarch round, and it must be completed before one can even challenge the Matriarch to a Matriarch round with the won "Matriarch Key."
- Matriarch round -- the most important event in the clan, and the hardest (as well as the longest) step in the conquest to becoming Matriarch is doing a Lesser or Greater Matriarch round, facing the current Matriarch one-on-one in the most epic duel of the clan.
- Council Acceptance -- if the Matriarch round is beaten, the new Matriarch is not crowned leader until the clan and its higher leaders of special rank accept them as their new leader. This is where the kindness, respect, and personality of the Matriarch are tested. The members of the clan must like the new leader, as the Empresses of the Council will be judging the new leader on behalf of the rest of the Hive. If more than half of the Council does not accept the new leader, they must take an extra test (see below). If they are accepted, this is the last step and the newly liked leader may now control the Hive.
- Superiority subround (optional) -- although this is optional, it is mandatory if the Council Acceptance is failed. Matriarch italian-stal has made sure that this round was created to stop unwanted or unkind leaders from changing the Hive for the worse. However, he did not want to completely hinder the hard-working challenger. The Matriarch, if they are forced into this step, is known as unwanted but must face this final challenge. If it is beaten, they are Clan leader, whether the clan likes it or not.
Warning to all Hive Matriarchs: please respect the Hive and its members, as a proper leader leads his clan, not controls it. Unliked Matriarchs are likely to be challenged for matriarchy early on, as the Hive's members do not like their method of rule. Kind and responsible leaders will be liked and will rule for most likely long periods of time. Thank you.
In the Hive, there are many events, objects, and subjects named after the Matriarch because of their influence and authority in the Clan. The following things are named after the Matriarch:
- Matriarch - one-and-only of its special rank in the clan, supreme leader of the Hive Clan
- Matriarchy - the authority held by the Matriarch, challenged in Matriarch rounds
- Matriarch Road - the 3-to-4 step process it takes for one to become Matriarch (see above)
- Matriarch round - greater or lesser, the epic special round of the clan where the supreme leadership is challenged by a Hive member
- Matriarch tactic - the makeup of the current Matriarch's melee skillset and tactics in battle, the Hive's ultimate tactic
- Matriarch Rule - conglomerate rule stating all regulations for Matriarch-member relations: that each Hive member has only 3 attempts to usurp a Matriarch; that all special ranks (excluding Deacons) must take the Oath and can no longer challenge for Matriarchy; and that previous Matriarchs have free access to the Council as Empresses
- Matriarch Failsafe - in a Matriarch round, the ability for the Matriarch to make a last-ditch attempt to abandon battle to save his Matriarchy in the final 2 kills required by the challenger
- Matriarch Key - the symbolic key that permits a challenger to do a Matriarch round, won after beating a Guardian round; it must be used in a Matriarch round within 24 hours after receiving it or another Guardian round must be done for another key
The Hive may have a singular supreme leader, but the Clan throughout the years has expanded to multiple games and consoles. Over time, this has made the Matriarch's role of leading the Hive difficult across the Clan's different sectors. This initially became an issue during the reign of Matriarch italian-stal, when the Hive expanded to Aliens vs Predator on Xbox360. The expansion weighed on the Matriarch, as founding a completely new sector on a completely different console would take away from the attention of the at the time successful home sector on PS3. Thus, Matriarch italian-stal designed a Matriarch-like subrank to head the Xbox sector: the Monarch (named after the Red Queen Mother from Aliens: Genocide). Originally, only the single Monarch existed as the Matriarch's counterpart on Xbox360, while the Matriarch would be able to focus his time on the Clan's original sectors on Playstation. The Monarch held all of the Matriarch's responsibilities on Xbox360, with the exception of not being able to change clanwide rules or add new Hive events without the Matriarch's approval. This system -- where the one Monarch ruled the Xbox sector and reported back to the main Matriarch -- would exist through italian-stal and dragonsrule4444's reigns, up until the Matriarchy of sdrbuck234.
During the reign of sdrbuck234, the Council decided to majorly change the Monarch system (the first major change in Hive rule since the time of italian-stal) in Age 8 for the planned Great Expansion, starting with the Hive's expansion to PS4's Warframe. The rank of Monarch was completely repurposed and recreated as a full special rank of its own, no longer acting as an alternate Matriarch on a separate console. Instead, one Monarch would be placed in charge of each respective sector (albeit some sectors would be packaged together) of the Hive for all future expansions, each possessing sub-Matriarch abilities somewhat like the original Monarchs had. These sectors included those still visited regularly by the Matriarch, now making it possible for the Monarchs and Matriarch to be present in the same lobbies, unlike back when the Matriarch was only on PS3 and the Monarch only on Xbox360. In this way, Monarchs are now seen as pseudo-Matriarch sector leaders, their enhanced jurisdiction present only on their assigned sector. The inspiration for this new Monarch role came from the "Lead Empress" title and responsibilites held by mad_hatter_968 on the short-lived GTA sector, as well as the original Executive Elder title that was conceived by dragonsrule4444 during her reign.
In their assigned sector(s), Monarchs have all of the abilities of Empresses plus additional powers and authority. A Monarch has the ability to host all Hive games and essentially all special rounds (except the Academy round and any part of the Matriarch Road); this includes the Alpha, Omega, Pureblood, and Council elite special rounds, which not even Empresses host. Monarchs can also host all Hive activities, including their own Hive Trials without the presence of the Matriarch (although the Matriarch is highly recommended). Additionally, Monarchs are allowed to issue downranking and suspension punishments (the latter not available to Empresses), as well as circumstantial rule alterations in Hive events. Monarchs do not, however, have the ability to change clanwide rules and regulations; nor do they have the capability to pass new games, modes, and rounds singlehandedly. Any new ideas must be passed in a Trial or have the acceptance of the Matriarch. Monarchs also cannot singlehandedly exile other Hive members or remove those of special rank from their position (as the Matriarch can), nor can they unexile currently exiled members. Instead, such decisions must be made by the Matriarch or by joint decision in a Hive Trial.
During the start of Age 9, the specific Monarchy of the PS3 sectors of the Clan (AvP, ACM) was shared between both bosu2001 and de_ALPHA__, creating the first Co-Monarchy; this was not a permanent change to the system, however, as only one Monarch actually filled the single position (whilst the other acted as a Bonus Monarch similar to the Bonus Empresses of the Council) and thus only one of the two could be challenged at a time for the overall Monarch position. If one of the Co-Monarchs were defeated in a Monarch round, both of them would lose their position to another single ruler. Together, each could host the same things and perform the same duties as a single Monarch, although Hive Trials had to have both Monarchs present to occur. This system would be extended, however, to the rule of numnutsforever, who would replace de_ALPHA__.
It must be noted that Monarchs only hold their exclusive power within their assigned sector(s). This means that, outside of their sector (ex. a PS3 Monarch on Xbox360), Monarchs only hold authority and ability equal to that of an Empress.
When the Hive expands to a new sector, current leaders of the Hive (Empresses, Queens, Kings, Deacons, the Matriarch) that have access to that new sector are sent there to begin creating the Hive on that game/console essentially from scratch. This can be a lengthy process where available subleaders initiate new members to ultimately create decent-sized lobbies that are regularly established and reformed day-to-day. Up to this point a new sector is considered under trial and can be later decommissioned if unsuccessful. When this process is considered complete by the Clan and the Matriarch, the new sector is considered established and is able to now hold its own presence without constant effort or time.
When this is the case, a Monarch will then be assigned to this sector by the Matriarch. All initial Monarchs of new sectors are originally assigned by the Matriarch, typically from an existing, trusted Empress that helped establish that sector. This Monarch may be a newly-promoted member (usually Empress prior) that now has jurisdiction of the sector, or an already standing Monarch whose jurisdiction has been spread to the new sector by the Matriarch, thus giving that Monarch multiple-sector control.
After the first Monarch of a new sector has been confirmed, that Monarch's power (or Monarchy of the sector) can then be challenged after a week by other Hive members, as is with a new Matriarch. Just as with the Matriarch, usurping a Monarch takes a multiple-step process known as the Monarch Road. Originally, this process was the same as the Matriarch Road (a total of 4 steps), but during the Great Expansion the Monarch Road was downsized and now only requires 2 steps: the Monarch round and the Sector Acceptance. Guardian rounds are no longer necessary against the Monarch, as now the Monarch round needs to be unlocked at a higher rank (Pureblood Drone). Now, members of appropriate rank can directly undergo the Monarch round; if successful, they then must be accepted by subleaders of that sector to become that sector's new Monarch. If the Sector Acceptance fails, the old Monarch retakes their place and the challenging member must try again.
Quitting Monarchs have automatic access to the Council again with the Empress Failsafe, just as with previous Matriarchs. If the Empress Failsafe is not used, however, then the Monarch is automatically a Hiveblood Praetorian (prestige 3, rank 10) rank. Despite their height as a special rank, Monarchs are the only special rank outside Deacons that do not have to take the Matriarch Oath and thus can become future leaders of the clan as a whole.
In the Hive's history, there have been a total of 8 Clan leaders, 5 historically known as Matriarchs. Below are the Hive's Matriarchs, including the specific Matriarch round they used to seize power from the Matriarch before them:
- BadassOfDOD (Creator of Clan)
- BURNING-WITCH_ (Creator of Clan)
- CHAKRAMMblade (Creator of Clan)
- DARKWOLFPHOENIX (inherited)
- cz1420 (Greater Matriarch round)
- italian-stal (Lesser Matriarch round)
- dragonsrule4444 (Lesser Matriarch round)
- sdrbuck234* (Greater Matriarch round)
* = current Matriarch
In the Hive's history, the Monarch rank was first established as the singular leader of the Xbox360 sector, which did not open until 2013. The rank was the successor, however, to what was originally called the "Lead Empress" (and later Executive Elder) position, the only spot of which was filled by mad_hatter_968 for leadership of the now-decommissioned GTAV sector. (This in essence makes mad_hatter_968 a sort of pre-Monarch, acting as the progenitor of what would become the position.) Of the original Monarchs of Old during the Matriarchy of italian-stal and dragonsrule4444, these were the leaders of the Xbox:
- Sdrbuck234 (Lesser Monarch round)
- BloodyGammaWolf (temporary)
After sdrbuck234 became Matriarch, he absorbed the domains of both the Monarch and Matriarch, leading him to reestablish the Monarch rank, leaving a Monarch in charge of all sectors, now including those the Matriarch actively rules. Here are the current Monarchs, as well as their respective sector(s) of rule:
- bosu2001 & numnutsforever (Playstation 3 Aliens vs Predator/Aliens: Colonial Marines)
- trajectory989 (Xbox360/PC Aliens vs Predator)
- Lotusofthesand (Playstation 4 Warframe)
These are previous Monarchs no longer in their positions, as well as their old sector(s) of jurisdiction:
- mad_hatter_968 (*honourary, Playstation 3 Grand Theft Auto V)
- de_ALPHA__ (Playstation 3 Aliens vs Predator/Aliens: Colonial Marines)