Guild Chat: Should I hop MMO guilds with my guild leader?

Welcome along to another edition of Guild Chat, the column through which I join forces with the Massively Overpowered readership in order to tackle some guild-related issue. Our reader in need this time is K, who wants to know whether he should join a new guild with his current leader after his guild ceased fielding raids. Although K has been offered a spot on the new guild’s training raids, which should suit his experience, he is worried about the ability gap and the risk of not fitting in.

Provide your thoughts in the comments and read below for his full submission and my response.

“I joined a small raid training guild to learn the ropes a few months ago. I decided that it was a good time to check out raiding and have really enjoyed it, but unfortunately, the guild has been having problems filling spots reliably. The leader runs her main with a larger raiding guild, and they have offered to have the couple remaining raiders in my guild to join their training bench. They take one or two people from the training bench along to each raid to train them while the other spots are filled from the raider roster.  I’m not a brilliant raider yet. Do I go, or will I get lost in the crowd and never get the raiding rank?”

Moving on is never easy to do, K, but it does sound as though your raiding days will be limited if you don’t move on to another guild that can help you continue to learn. Your leader has been exceptionally honest about the situation his or her guild is in, and you are aware that the effort previously put into filling raid spots is ceasing. Having said that, I want you to know that you don’t have to stick with the leader who had shown you the ropes just because the larger guild has offered to have you.

Throughout my response, I’ll help you consider your options now that you’re on the hunt for a new guild. Believe it or not, you now possess a marketable set of skills and credentials that represents your raiding journey so far: It’s my aim to help you use that.

This is fine.

Your raiding footprint

No matter what MMO you play, your efforts so far will be evidenced in one way or another. Each game handles the specifics in different ways, but players will find some method for demonstrating competency in your MMO of choice. This could be a collection of raid-specific tokens, boss kill achievements, or a myriad of other systems, but either way, you can use this fact to prove that your character has some clout. Such markers of progress are usually perfect bartering tools when you’re applying for places in guilds as they provide the leader with some small assurance that you can bring valuable experiences into the fold.

Some of these markers are more useful than others in that they also track how many times you’ve bested a particular boss: If this is the case in the MMO you enjoy then you can easily see how you stack up compared to raiding spot advertisements you see. You say you’re not a great raider, but you might be surprised when you actually consider the bosses you’ve cleared and the milestones you’ve cleared. You might find that you stack up well against what a standard raiding guild is looking for and that you’re unfairly comparing yourself to the high-end cream of the raiding crop. Check out PUG advertisements and you can then see more clearly how in-demand your experience can be. Remember that a large segment of players never tackles the most difficult endgame content in a given MMO, so any kills set you apart from a freshly minted endgame character.

What do you know about the new guild?

The best way to find out if this is the right move for you is to find out all you can about the new guild. Scope out its raiding times, expectations, looting rules if that applies, and the general guild rules too. Once you have this benchmark, you can then compare it to any other guilds that stuck out in your research. Remember that the choice you’re facing isn’t as simplistic as staying put or joining this specific guild; if it doesn’t feel right, there are countless other guilds you could join instead. My main concern, for now at least, would be getting acquainted with the guild’s leader and hearing his or her perspective on what role you’d take on if you were to join them: Often people expect that friends they bring into guilds will fill a certain role without clearing it with the leader first, and this can lead to a shattering of expectations after the move if you’re not careful.

Do you know anyone else who is currently on the guild’s roster? Having an inside perspective would be useful as you weigh up your options: Remember that your current leader is not a full member of this guild and isn’t versed in their regular activities, so you might have questions that she cannot answer for you. Perhaps setting up a similar agreement to the one your leader has is the best way forward until you’re comfortable with how you’ll fit in with the new guild: You can stay among your current in-game friends while continuing to raid, while also getting the chance to expand your knowledge and skills to increase your chances of getting off their training bench and onto the fully fledged raiding roster.

Big time.

Remember that your decision isn’t permanent

You can always go back on your choice to join if you find that you’re passed over for an extended period of time, so don’t worry too much about the repercussions of leaving your current guild for something new. As nice as it is to be somewhere familiar, it sounds as though your current guild will likely flounder without its leader anyway unless someone else has a clear plan for taking it over, so if she is leaving, you’re best jumping ship too. If a leader isn’t invested in a guild he or she creates, chances are it isn’t offering much to its members anyway, so I wonder whether you’re actually gaining much from the guild you’re in aside from doing some raids.

Set a sensible time limit for your trial in the guild and reevaluate your decision after that time has passed: If you have made progress and are enjoying the atmosphere, you can then relax in your new in-game home and enjoy it, but if not then you haven’t wasted too much of your leisure time. Even if raids in your game have a weekly lockout, you should know in a few weeks how well you’ll be accommodated in your guild, so don’t drag things out because of promises of future opportunities. Ensure that criteria for making the raid rank or getting that coveted training spot is made clear and then you’ll know what you need to do to and can use this information to make the most of your gaming time. Good luck and happy raiding, K!

Over to you!

Joining a new guild is filled with uncertainty, but it’s important to remember that it’s an entirely reversible decision and many of the risks and worries can be mitigated if you’re sensible. What’s important is setting particular objectives or pursuing your goals and ensuring that your chosen guild is helping you meet those aims. Have you any experiences you could share with K to help with the transition to a new guild? Did you make a similar leap before, and if so, did you regret it or was it a positive step? Don’t forget to pop your advice in the comments below.

Many thanks to K for this submission. If you have a guild-related issue you’d like help solving, email me your submission for consideration. 

MOP’s Tina Lauro is on-hand to deal with all of your guild-related questions, queries, and drama in Guild Chat. Whatever your guild issue, she’s sure to have a witty yet sympathetic response. If there’s a specific topic you’d like to see dissected, drop Tina a comment or send an email to tina@massivelyop.com.
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atherenlightspeed
Reader
atherenlightspeed

Unless you’re related or real life friends with the Guild Leader, I’d say it’s time to find a new Raiding Guild that will offer you more opportunities to learn. The “new” larger guild doesn’t sound like it has much to offer you at this point.

Reader
Bryan Correll

It sounds like you joined your current guild chiefly as a path to raiding. If the raiding isn’t happening anymore you then have to ask yourself if there are other reasons to stay where you are. If you don’t have good reason to stay (i.e. you really like hanging out with the rest of the guild) and you want to continue raiding I’d say go ahead and make the move.
If you have a good relation with your current leader it does give you an ‘in’ with his regular guild. If things don’t work out you can always move on.
Of course, I know absolutely nothing about this new guild other than that they do take less experienced raiders along. And that’s probably as good a deal (raid wise) as you’re going to get from a dedicated raiding guild.

Reader
Alex Malone

If you enjoy raiding, I’d say take the jump and joining the training bench in the new guild.

You will be specifically added to the training bench, so their expectations won’t be that high. Use it as an opportunity to ask a ton of questions, a good raid leader will really appreciate you doing that rather than just hoping for the best. They’ve obviously established a good balance where they can afford to take along inexperienced raiders, so don’t be afraid of mistakes. Hell, the best raiders in the world still make mistakes!

Finally, if you’re nervous about your performance, just prepare in advance. Watch tutorials on the raid bosses, read up on your class, practice your rotations or whatever else you need to do. Raids may not be as exciting if you already know what’s coming, but you’ll feel more confident.

Reader
Jeromai _

Think the main question to ask is: “Who do I want to raid with?”

Happy with the people in the old guild? Are OK with the level of performance/no-showness propensity of the old guild? Especially without the push/organization of the leader who will likely be shifting attention elsewhere? Or loathe the culture of the new guild? Then stay.

Feel like the new guild might offer more training or chances to practice? Like the leader’s style or the opportunity/doors opened by the leader? Is it just nervousness or performance anxiety that is holding you back? Then go. You can’t improve if you never risk failure. Preferably just be frank about what you feel you can’t do yet and ask what you can do to change that – good guilds will have some people open to giving you a chance; a guild that shuts all the doors on you means it’s not where you want to be.

Don’t like either choice? Or chose one and later find the situation is no longer as good as hoped? Then time to look elsewhere.

Imo, “I’m not a brilliant raider yet” kinda suggests that OP is expecting that the raid training guild will mold and shape him to be a brilliant raider… errr, that’s not really going to be the case.

The bulk of the homework and quest for improvement will have be done on your own part. The point of whichever guild you join is to a) give you regular/consistent weekly opportunities to practice raids so you can get better at all the things that need practicing in a raid environment, and b) let you meet and develop a network of raiding players in your timezone, so that you can either call on them if you’re the organizing type, or be called on to sub/fill, if you’re the following type; and pick up some hints/tips along the way.

Personally, I’m always for jumping ship and shopping around at the start of anything. A fast way to learn is to expose yourself to as many styles of doing things and give yourself as much chance to practice as possible. Eventually, you’ll find a group, a community, a style of player that suits you and then you’ll want to cling onto that as long as it can feasibly last. Until change inevitably happens, then it’s time for the road again.

Reader
Slaasher

Life’s a gamble. Roll the dice.
Or don’t.
Its a game, go where you will have fun. If you’re not having fun then make a change.
This isn’t rocket science and i dont think anyone can answer it for anyone else.

Reader
jay

In GW2 you can be in 5 guilds at once. I have my WvW guild, my PvE world boss guild, my Raid guild, my for funzies guild, and my guild with 8 people in it that has no use.

Yes, I’m not as invested in as I would be with a single guild, but this allows me to access all of the content available in multiple social platforms.

Reader
starbuck1771

Really not enough information to answer this. Just because your guild doesn’t raid doesn’t mean you can’t still raid depending on the game. I join raids in WoW all the time without my guild. So in the end it boils down to a loyalty issue.