- "IOTI" redirects here. For Lighthearter's game, see IOT Industrial.
Imperium Offtopicum, also known simply as IOT, and today specified as IOT I, was the very first formal IOT game. It was created and GMed by TaniciusFox in response to the chaos in the short-lived "OT Poster Empires" thread. The name was derived from the thread it succeeded, a vulgar Latin very loosely translating into "Offtopic Empire". The game ran from 15–30 March 2010, when it was superseded by the ironically-named sequel Imperium Offtopicum III.
Various rules were established, to allow barebones simulation. Most prominent was the outright ban on nuclear weapons, so as to disallow the anarchy and madness that had consumed the prior two games. There was also a UN created, so as to enable players to mediate disputes peacefully by voting, and also establish international laws such as weapons usage.
From the start, the game was plagued by issues. Firstly, there was no formal claiming system, thus allowing players to claim as much as they wanted. Secondly, resolving wars ran into numerous problems as without provinces, there was no clear way to determine how much territory should be won/lost in battles; victory and defeat were determined through die rolls that in some cases were fudged. Thirdly, the infamous Mathalamus joined and crafted a Mary Sue in the form of the Byzantine Empire, a trend he would continue in many future instalments.
Naturally, Omega124 started the first war over the Panama Canal, demanding it be property of the United States when the UN had already ruled it international territory. The entire world dogpiled Omega, though the war system, still in its infancy, prevented it from going anywhere.
IOT would give its name to an entire set of games, a genre spun off from those games, and the subforum they are now all hosted in. This is often used as bragging rights by TF, in spite of his later decision to jump ship to NES.