Guild Chat: Moving up the ranks in MMORPG guilds
Welcome along to Guild Chat, the column through which the Massively Overpowered community gathers together to help one reader in need with his or her guild-related dilemma. This time, reader Jake wishes to gather opinions on the best way to fully integrate into a new guild and move out of the initiate rank and into the upper echelons as quickly as possible. Jake is new to MMORPGs, this is his first guild, and he has joined without the benefit of real-life friends already being established in the MMO world. He is part of a levelling guild with a rather large roster of over 100 characters and is having fun but is wondering how he advances the ranks and becomes a more permanent fixture in his virtual home. Read on for Jake’s full submission alongside my ideas for impressing his new guildmates. and don’t forget to leave your thoughts in the comments below.
I have a question about finding out more about a guild you’ve just joined. I am new to MMOs and joined my first guild a couple weeks back to help me level and find people to play with. My gamer buddies don’t play MMOs so I am solo in this. I joined this levelling guild with about 100 people in it and I haven’t moved off the noob rank at all even though I log in every day and want to know how normal this is and what can be done to fit in with the people in this guild. Everyone is friendly and we have good talks on Discord but I want to blend in more and become a core member. Thanks!
Welcome to the crazy world of MMO fandom, Jake! Getting new recruits to the game type is every major MMO’s aim, of course, and one of the most attractive features offered by the genre is the high level of social interaction that is not only facilitated but encouraged by the gamespace. As you’ve already discovered, guilds offer a great central hub for that social interaction and help large groups of disparate players come together to enjoy the best group content the MMO has to offer. I’ll help you get to grips with the thought process behind guild rank assignment as well as talk you through my top tips for becoming a core member of any sort of casual guild.
I wanted to start by explaining to you how most guild masters use guild ranks and let you know why you may not have been ranked up at this stage of playing. The most important thing to note is that guild ranks are not always earned directly through longevity or activity and are more often heavily linked to guild permissions and controlling access to shared resources instead. What this means for you as a levelling player is that you might sit in lower ranks for the entire duration of the levelling process since you don’t need high-end access to guild resources for end-game content clearing.
This is not to say that you’ll never be promoted or that levelling is the only route to climbing the ladder: Making a great and lasting impression on the guild will most definitely help you break through the white noise of such a large guild in order to rank up. While you work on this, try not to worry about the name of your rank or how long you’ve been at that level. Unlike systems in many other game genres, ranking up is not a metric of game success since the rank means more from an internal administration point of view than it does to the wider playerbase. This is due to the lack of direct comparison of guild ranks since these are custom-created within each guild: A newbie in one guild might be a fully levelled player in beginning gear, for example, whereas in your case a newbie is someone who is currently levelling his or her main character.
Just as in other multiplayer games and social settings, the fastest route to becoming a comfortable fixture in your new online haunt is to be friendly and pay forward the help you receive. You’re off to a great start: Many players who are totally new to the MMO scene would not have found a guild and jumped on voice chat with them after only a couple of weeks of play, especially not without the backup of some familiar faces. What your new guild would like to see from you is behaviour that means they’ll not worry about you repping them in the game: Many players feed bad experiences back to the owner of a player’s guild, so guild leaders usually like to get to know players before handing them higher ranks. There’s nothing worse than getting a report that a veteran guildmate has treated someone poorly or been screen-capped spouting abuse on a wipe; it tars the entire guild with the same brush because outsiders get a feel of a guild by those who make up its main member base and management ranks.
Be positive in your approach to game content and help those of a similar or lower level than you by applying what you’ve learned so far. Think back on any sticking points you hit and offer your assistance to your guildmates when they fall into those same traps. Your guild probably goes to the effort of facilitating some group content for levelling players if that is the guild focus, and you can offer to run some level-appropriate content when you’re more comfortable.
Aside from being a positive force when you’re playing, you’ll also want to be seen online regularly by the right eyes if you’re to be promoted. Being online at least every few days is a good start, but you can maximise the impact of this time invested by spending a solid portion of your time engaging with guild events and encouraging others to do the same. Sign up for those guild events and take the time to attend: If you’re at all interested in running regular endgame content when you’ve levelled up, this will be good practice for you in terms of getting to grips with your character and becoming accustomed to synergising with other players.
While you don’t want to be loud or obnoxious, joining in with the general chatter that happens in your guild is a great way to get to know the wider member base of your guild and to make your name one that is familiar. Know who your officers and leaders are: You’ll likely pick this information up as an active member, but if not, you can check out the guild tab for more information on who is at which rank. You might find that you miss some leaders due to your play times, but any efforts you make to meet the team increases the likelihood of becoming friendly with one. Mid-level materials are probably the most scarce in your guild bank: Your guild management likely farm the needed high-level materials and then the bulk of low-end materials are naturally supplied by newbies, so if you can fill any gaps, you’ll always be appreciated for the effort.
A great issue faced by levelling guilds is uniting players with very different experience levels and character level ranges. As more players level up, vacuums can be made in the lower-mid level brackets, and likewise, many level-capped players will move on from the levelling guild for one that focuses on endgame content. Once you reach the level cap and get more acquainted with the endgame content on offer, you might find that your levelling guild no longer suits your needs if it does not facilitate the content you’re interested in, so be sure you wish to stick around for a while before considering any ranks higher than those offered to full regular members. You don’t want to push for promotions and then move swiftly along and start all over again, after all.
Ultimately, organically rising the ranks based on your natural MMO behaviours is the best thing you can do. Ranks aren’t something to get too hung up on unless you feel that you wish to help run a guild and organise content for your guildmates. If you find yourself without access to some guild resources you need, usually a polite query to the right person will correct the matter swiftly and without fuss. Items and resources that are useful to you as a levelling player may not be as valuable to the guild management, so they often have no problem with sharing if you’ll genuinely use something. Wherever you end up, I wish you many years of MMO fun, Jake!
Over to you!
Do you worry about the rank you’re assigned in your guild? How do you break into a new guild and make friends? Let Jake know your top tips by writing them in the comments section for him.
Thanks to Jake for this week’s submission. If you have a query you’d like to see discussed in Guild Chat, email me your submission for consideration.