Instructional Essay

How To Successfully Take Over The World

There comes a point in the life of every megalomaniac, sociopath, sadist and computer geek when we want to take over the world. We've all considered it, but very few have ever attempted it, and those who have have been invariably defeated by some hero or other. As you who fall into the computer geek category would probably know, there are numerous websites out there that attempt to aid you in your quests to become an Evil Overlord. While these sources are indeed valid, none have been able to instruct the discerning megalomaniac/sociopath/sadist/computer geek on how to successfully conquer the known world. But now, there is this simple and straightforward guide.

STEP ONE: PREREQUISITES

Evil Overlording is a tough job, and those seeking a career in this area must first be truly dedicated to their chosen field. Other specifications include:

Intelligence. No villainous leader has gotten anywhere from being stupid. Genius, while generally preferable, is not always required. Simply the ability to think ahead to a certain degree, "street smarts", and a knack for witty little one-liners are important. Sense of humour. It is important to be able to laugh at ourselves, if only because we loose far too many good henchmen when they laugh at our expense a little too loudly. Extensive vocabulary. When dealing with your enemies, it is important to look superior to them. Use words like "quintuplicate", instead of simply saying "increase fivefold". This has the added benefit of confusing all your less intelligent enemies. Intimidating physique/facial features. Failing this, you must at least look extremely good in black. The Voice. It's no good to get your enemies in your clutches only to have them find that your voice sounds like a Carebear's. The same holds true for your maniacal laughter; it must be a sound to chill the bravest of hearts. Failing this, don't laugh at all; simply settle for looking grim and angry. Creativity. (see STEP THREE: NAMING YOURSELF; STEP FOUR: BUILDING AND DESIGNING; and STEP SIX: PLOTTING)

STEP TWO: FINDING YOUR INNER EVIL OVERLORD

This first step is crucial. Before one can even consider becoming an Evil Overlord, one must first realise what it means to be an Evil Overlord. This also includes finding your motive for why you chose this profession. The basic definition of the term Evil Overlord is "one who is an overlord, a ruler of all peoples and nations, who is evil". For those seeking a more detailed description, it is recommended that you either find yourself a dictionary or put down the guide now and just leave the Evil Overlord-ing profession to those more agile in the area of language (see STEP ONE: PREREQUISITES). Meditate on this definition for a while; it will help you to decide whether this is the profession for you, or if you should opt for being a hero, side-kick, heroine or sage old man/woman (these are times of equal opportunity, after all). Once you have ascertained that yes, you really do want to be an Evil Overlord; you must decide why you're going to become one. This is important, as, at some point in your career, an ex-friend/ex-lover/sage old man or woman/hero is going to demand of you "But...why?". It is important that you have a satisfactory answer for him/her. Some of the more popular excuses include: "They all said I would amount to nothing, but look at me now!", "The Academy rejected me, but I showed them!", "Mad! Mad! They said I was mad! Who's mad now?!", or "Daddy/Mummy never loved me!". Never reply with "I was bored", "Because I could!", or "Because it was there".

STEP THREE: NAMING YOURSELF

Occasionally, our parents make mistakes when naming us. Many Evil Overlords prefer to rectify this by murdering them and changing their names to something more intimidating. If this option disturbs or nauseates you, a career as a self-righteous hero is strongly recommended. Choices include a name that ties in with your powers, though names such as "Magneto" are frowned upon, as they are intimidating for all the wrong reasons; they strike fear into our hearts because they remind of something taught in our secondary school science classes. Neat little anagrams of your own name are also highly favoured, particularly if they have a clever and apt meaning in a foreign language (i.e., Voldemort in JK Rowling's Harry Potter series). Some Evil Overlords prefer simplicity, as anagrams of your own name can turn out being merely ridiculous when not thought out properly. If you find yourself unsure, simply look into what other Evil Overlords have chosen, and feel free to get imaginative.

STEP FOUR: BUILDING AND DESIGNING

Another area where you can allow your artistic flair (if any) show through is in the designing and constructing of your fortress and guards' uniforms. Black, grey and brown are usually preferred, occasionally with a splash of blood red and your symbol emblazoned on them somewhere obvious. Feel free to be creative when designing a symbol that fully embodies everything you stand for. This guide suggests that, if and when you do this, you don't do what Hitler's Nazis did and merely plagiarise another culture's religious symbols. If you find that you are lacking in artistic or architectural talent, don't worry. You're an Evil Overlord after all; it's okay to bully a designer or architect into doing what you can't. Just make sure you don't cause too many nervous breakdowns before the "employee" in question has managed to produce something satisfactory. If, for some reason, your "employee" does suffer a nervous breakdown or sudden loss of life, make certain you have a replacement waiting in the wings.

STEP FIVE: HIRING YOUR MINIONS

Being an Evil Overlord can be a trying profession, and there are bound to be thousands of small jobs that you will find yourself too tired/too busy/too vain to do. These menial tasks can be awarded to anonymous henchmen/women. Before you begin hiring, remember to be an indiscriminate Evil Overlord. You want as many groups of people on your side after all, and groups who feel they are being discriminated against will most probably form part of an uprising against you or assassinate you.

STEP SIX: PLOTTING

Having completed all the preliminary steps, you are now free to form a master plan for your world domination scheme. Creativity is vital. We have witnessed, in the past, numerous attempts at world domination which have involved nuclear warheads, doing something to America (it is truly amazing how many plots revolve around this), and melting polar icecaps. Genocide is an old favourite among villains. However, these are not your only options by far. In this modern day and age, it is only too easy to lay hands on chemical and biological weapons; a simple matter of convincing America that you're developing new weaponry for them.

STEP SEVEN: DEALING WITH ENEMIES

Regardless of how nice an Evil Overlord you are, you will eventually make an enemy or two. These usually come in the form of angry young adults whose parents you killed for their title, for their money, or just for the hell of it. Unlike normal angry young adults who vent their feelings by doing drugs, alcohol, or kick boxing, these will start some sort of vendetta against you. Hounding you, trying to thwart every one of your diabolical schemes, enemies of this kind can be a downright nuisance, particularly if they decide to bring a few friends along. They should be dealt with while they are still in their clumsy "I'm-still-new-at-this-heroing-thing-and-it's-all-just-beginner's-luck" phase. Assuming their beginner's luck isn't too good, they will be easy to get rid of. The other kind of hero you may come across is the "Old School Friend" breed. Often, they can be subdued by nostalgia; remind them of when you were at school together, and all those times you got into mischief et cetera. After this, they will either join you for a small fee, or be so misty-eyed and teary that you can have them shot without too much fuss.

STEP EIGHT: DEALING WITH RIVALS

Obviously, you will not be the only Evil Overlord in the beginning. Often, these will be your old friends. Evil Overlording involves a fair amount of irony. Traditionally, rivals are often sons, brothers or half-brothers, and apprentices, although in these changing times you can probably expect to see a female equivalent of these. The only acceptable way to deal with a rival is to have them exterminated or imprisoned somewhere where they will be unable to escape. Ever. Some less orthodox Evil Overlords attempt to convince their rivals to join them in a slightly lower position. That idea is frowned upon by more logical minds, however, as it is generally felt that those who choose to be Evil Overlords tend to be quite crafty. If your rival is in a lower position than you are, how do you know that they're not merely waiting for the right time to usurp your power? Have all rivals disposed of.

STEP NINE: DYING

Not all Evil Overlords choose to die. Some would prefer to chase immortality. Unfortunately, the quest for eternal life can be time consuming and often leads to neglect of your duties, thus causing your eventual demise. However, if you feel secure enough to seek a perpetual state of longevity, do so. For those who would simply prefer to live to a ripe old age, an heir is necessary if you decide you want your regime to continue following your death. If this is the case, the heir does not necessarily have to be your own child (being the evil ruler of all things tends to detract from/completely irradiate your sex life). This heir must have your values imposed on them from a young age. Make sure the child loves and respects you, and is not allowed to watch any news or current affairs programs. Keep her/him away from Christian schools, as these will cause him/her to grow up to question all authority (or, in a worst-case scenario, she/he could form part of a comedy troupe with their own TV series and numerous cult movies in their name). Brainwashing is seen as a little extreme by some, but this isn't a good parenting guide. Go with whatever technique gives you the best results. If you have suddenly decided that immortality would be easier than having to raise a child, we recommend cloning.

STEP TEN: REVENGE

No matter how well laid your plans are, from time to time, you will be thwarted. At times like that, they say all you can do is laugh. However, "they" are not Evil Overlords; you don't have to laugh. You don't even have to get angry. You can utter a monosyllabic phrase and have a crack team of assassins go after whoever you've decided to blame today. Then you can continue with your day.

Having completed followed these ten simple guidelines; you should find yourself well and truly prepared to take over the world. The author of this guide takes no responsibility if this guide fails to work for you, if you are arrested or if an enemy manages to kill you before you reach Step Ten. However, if you do manage to conquer the world, it was all because of this guide and its author requests immunity from all lawsuits, prison sentences, and small country town obliterations.