My casual/raiding guild is starting to build up to 25-man content. They're raiding with a bunch of ex-guildies who have drifted through a handful of other guilds before running out of options and trying to start their own. This splinter guild doesn't have enough people to raid even Kara, never mind their goal of beginning 25-man content, so they proposed an alliance to start the 25-man track.
There's enthusiasm in my guild. New content! For many people in the guild, this will be their first big raid ever. For others, this would be a way to relive the glory days (cough) of Molten Core/Onyxia. The 25-man track is the big boy raid track! Whee!
There are a few problems, though.
Many of these ex-guildies kind of need their own definition. They're drifters who have swept through other guilds, convincing people that the current leadership wasn't treating them right, that coming with them will bring the resolution to whatever problem. "I'm leaving! Who's with me?!" Unfortunately, the people who left quickly learn that all they did was trade their friends and problems for a new set of problems with people who weren't friends, and now they're out in the cold wilderness of general chat. Some even learn that leadership in the game-space is difficult and it's impossible to keep everyone happy. So the new recruits slink back to their old guilds, or are turned away and have to start fresh somewhere else. Meanwhile, the drifters keep doing their drifting thing through guilds, not understanding how drama follows them at every turn. They're a handful of perpetually disaffected people.
So on a personal level, I think it's not good to group with them since all they do is try to grab people to their perpetually outcast nation. They're poison to a good system, and the only antidote is being awesome enough that you resist their attack.
Never mind that in a big raid, you have 25 chances to lose. The choice for these evenings with these raid events is between:
- Hanging out with 24 people with whom all the reasons raiding isn't fun are magnified (more chances for no-shows, more chances for late, more chances for afk, more chances for poor personality, more chances for sphos, more chances that some of these people won't be friends and it will be some big anonymous bukkake event and not a journey/triumph with friends).
- A guaranteed good time spending the evening with my daughter.
Not the hardest choice I've ever been faced with.
I like teamwork and group games as much as (or more than) the next person, but guild alliances either don't work and waste a lot of effort or end in a merge, and I could put a lot of time and effort into fending off their approach, but honestly who am I to stop my guild from trying something new? Never mind that the roster is 70/30 in our favor, so it's basically just working hard to raid with the people who were a load the first time around and tried to wreck the guild on their way out.
But rather than cause a scene and try to orchestrate this thing failing, I'm just going to fade from that effort and wish happiness to everyone there. Although it pains me to not participate. I was GM of this guild, I did a good job with it. Now it's leaving me behind to try something that I know is going to end badly.
I guess I could take all this to be a (muted, far less emotional) preview of what seeing my daughter leave for college is going to be like. It's just par for the course that things like this happen. People have different goals in these games, and frankly Blizzard hasn't given us non-large-raid types much to do if you don't like arena. I've got a Kara-equipped healer, a Kara-equipped tank, a pve mage with gear good enough to swap in for early raiding, and an effective battleground hunter. I've completely drank this level of content dry.
So have many of my guildies. We steamrolled Magister's Terrace. The second time there was relaxing, not challenging. (Going back in heroic is still on my todo list.) My friend told me that he just logs in due to inertia, but he's desperate for new content. Where the guild goes for it, he'll go. I know how he feels. I want new content too.
But instead of holding my nose, I'll be sitting this phase out.
- Small Group Raiding in WotLK
- The Downside of Endgame Guilds
- Raid Sizes and Design Inertia