12 Jul 2010

Clearing My Head

Ugh, things have come to a head lately. I’ve been logging on, doing my thing and generally making my own fun. But for some reason something has been feeling amiss, like I’m dancing round the edge of a crater. I’ve been trying to work out what it is and it’s been driving me bananas.

I think I’ve finally worked out what it is. I think I need to leave my guild.

I think I also need to explain why I’ve got this crazy thought in my head. After all, they’re a great bunch of people and I know some of them in Real Life. They’re funny, entertaining and generally don’t do anything to annoy me. The Asshole Quotient seems to be exceedingly low.

I’ve also got a collection of alts on the same server that look after eachother – a mage, a priest and a warlock. I have a Paladin tank approaching 80 and a Fury warrior and tree languishing in the doldrums of early Outland.

So why would I look such a gift horse in the mouth?

  • I struggle to raid with them. The variances of my job mean that some weeks I’ll be able to make a raid, while other weeks I miss out completely. they don’t do any weekend raiding, so if weekends are the only time I have free, it’s a no-go. They also insist on using a Guildomatic calendar rather than the in-game one for raid invites, which I have an irrational pet peeve against.
  • They have a very light-touch looting system, which basically allows anyone to roll on anything that’s useful to them. This includes healers rolling on +hit gear and leather/mail/plate wearers rolling on cloth gear. If you’re a cloth-wearing caster, you get the thin end of the wedge.

It’s really petty, I know. But I’m getting really, really tired of running weekend Pugs and only getting the first four bosses down. It doesn’t matter if it’s 10-man or 25-man, the story is usually the same. I think it’s mostly because you can faceroll your way through the first part of Icecrown, while the middle stages require raid-wide coordination in order to be successful.

Working out that it’s time to leave is one thing – there’s a whole flipside to the discussion as well. A famous mage by the name of Rincewind once said that where you run to is almost as important as where you run from.

I’ve learned the hard way that Shaemus is the character I always want to focus on. I’m happy to have a collection of useful alts as long as that’s what they remain. There was an incident back in Burning Crusade where the mage class leader forced me to have my warlock as my main or leave the guild. I left the guild. They imploded shortly afterwards.

Whatever I do, it’s got to be related to my main. I don’t want to use my priest, my warlock, or even one of my other mages. I want to improve the character I have the achievements on, the one with all the pets, the one with all the fancy items. The one I’ve been playing since Vanilla.

I’m thinking that I’ve got about four different choices with all of this:

  • Do nothing. Hey, it’s a choice. I choose to do nothing, deal with my discomfort and mark time until the expansion hits. No guarantee though that anything will be better when it does. I might be doing nothing for a long time, or merely delaying the decision to do something else later.
  • Move guild/raidgroup on the same server. Not sure if this is a goer – Steamwheedle Cartel is fairly quiet – a quick look at the forums show that recruitment is very quiet. It’s probably going to be a struggle to find what I’m after
  • Move to a new server. The trouble with this is leaving all my other alts behind, having to maybe go through a name change, the list goes on. I might have to do a race and/or faction change as well, which doesn’t sit too well. I have a cool mage, but he’s a cool gnome mage as well!
  • Swap him with one of my other mages. Do a server/race change on my main, and do a server/race change on one of my other mages to take his place. That way the character is still there, but I’ve got a bit more freedom about where I plonk my main. Part of this feels icky and complex to me, but it might be workable. That’s also a lot of transfer and recustomisation fees.
  • Play a different game. No, I’m not talking about quitting Warcraft, I’m just talking about giving up on raiding for a while and focusing on something else, like PvP or achievements. Trouble is I’ve been doing this for a while, and nothing holds a draw to me like raiding. I’m not completely sure why, but it’s the aspect of the game I enjoy the most.

So you see my frustration. Unsure of where to go, and not keen to leave until I work it out. I also want to make sure that I’m not just doing something because the grass is greener on the other side.

What would you do when faced with such a quandary? What have you done in the past in order to resolve it? What steps would you take, what traps would you avoid? or am I just too fussy, too picky and too demanding with what I want from a game?

Why is it that the social aspects of the game also seem to generate the most complex choices?

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15 Responses to Clearing My Head

  1. Jaedia says:

    Ya know, I’m not the best person to ask with this stuff – I’ve rerolled to Terenas twice now, only to miss the people I knew on Vashj (mostly the bf) and move back, to play a different character. Hopefully, soonish, before Cataclysm, ish.. myself AND the bf are thinking about a transfer. I can’t stand my current server but I’d rather put up with it than play elsewhere. We’ll be looking for a nicely balanced PvE (non PvP, non RP – not his thing) server to plonk our Horde arses on.

    Was going to offer, if you wanted to join us, but I have the exact same thing with my Priest. She was the first character I gave a crap about, played her since quite early TBC and achieved all the TBC goodies on her. She is a Blood Elf, I couldn’t see her as anything else. If you’re the same as me in that respect, I highly recommend you don’t change your Mage from Gnome to something else.

    I sometimes wonder if I did the right thing changing Fae to a Draenei when she was always a Blood Elf, but luckily I was a little less attached to Fae than I am to Seithir but God I miss my Horde wolf, not a fan of the Alliance steed.

    Personally, if you’re not too attached to the people you know on Steamweedle, I think a transfer might be a good idea. More chance of finding a place that suits you, without having to become Gazimoff the Troll Mage.
    Jaedia recently posted..The Under-Representation Of Shadow PriestsMy Profile

    • Gazimoff says:

      Funny you should mention that you’re thinking of transferring – one of my mages is a troll one :). He’s level 60 though, so he’d need a bit of work to push through to level cap. Let me know what you decide though – it’d be cool to have a use for him 🙂

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  3. Windsoar says:

    1: Decide what is it you like to do. Do you want to see X content right now? Or is that just a sidebar to your real discontent?
    2: Are you going to meet your goals in your current situation?
    3: If not, see if you can meet your goals on server. I’m basically fairly cheap, so I don’t take server transfers lightly (plus my well known altoholic status). If you’re going to move, you’re going to end up having to rebuild your cadre of characters unless you just have a bunch of extra cash sitting around ready to be eaten by Blizzard.
    4: Find a server/guild. First, scout out guilds, preferably 3-4 on different servers. Examine the servers (good ratio of horde/alliance, strong AH, all that jazz). If that’s all good, then start talking to the guilds before you commit your character. Nothing worse than finding out a week later that you have serious concerns about X, Y & Z.

    Around this time in an expansion cycle, I generally stay put OR find myself a nice friendly leveling guild to start the new expansion with. It’s hard to get a good feel for raid teams at the end of a cycle b/c they have a rash of returning players (generally speaking) when the expansion finally releases. A guild you join at this point can have a massive shift in outlook and /g chat within 6 months, which can be good or bad. However, if you just MUST see the content while it’s fresh, it is definitely worth finding the right time. A TON of guilds are seeking players of all kinds due to summer blues in conjunction with the ending of the cycle, so it would be an ideal time to make a goal oriented shift.
    Windsoar recently posted..GjalerbornMy Profile

    • Gazimoff says:

      Valid points about the cycle. I guess on the flipside, I’m keen to get myself prepped and ready for Cataclysm.

      I think the main struggle I’m going to face is finding a weekend raiding guild – almost all are based around weeknights, so finding what I’m after may be a struggle. I might be able to do a later start in the evening, but even so it’s a bit hit-and-miss.

      And yep, completely agree with you about doing my homework. I have a ton of alts on Steamwheedle Cartel, and I want to be very careful how I approach this.

      • Windsoar says:

        I know how you feel. My favorite guild (so far) had a raiding schedule of Thurs-Sat because it was a bunch of grad students and that’s when they could play. It was a great fit time-wise. I personally hate rushing from work to raid / having to feel drained because the raid starts to late for me to get enough sleep (I am a TOTAL sleep dragon!)

        As a raider, if you play the game to raid, I would encourage you to make the search for a new guild, but I would also caution you to be selective and make sure your needs are met–that’s the point of the move after all 🙂

  4. Wendar says:

    Hey Gaz, it’s a shame you’re thinking of leaving the guild, but completely understandable. I’m pretty sure I’d have already left if I couldn’t make the guild’s raid times, even though I get on really well with everyone.

    You’re right about Steamwheedle being quiet, but there are quite a few guilds and raiding alliances out there. I assume you’ve checked them out already and they’re not right for you?

    The loot system isn’t quite as bad as you make out here – we wouldn’t give +hit cloth to a resto druid over a mage. Or even to a holy priest over a mage! You must admit everyone is reasonable when it comes to loot. They might not always know what loot is good for them, but if it’s pointed out that a piece of gear is better for someone else, pretty much everyone would happily pass. Thats part of what makes the guild so much fun to play with. Half of them are incompetent, but at least there’s very little drama!

    Whatever you decide, I hope you keep an alt in the guild and come say hi every so often.
    And as others here have said, make sure you weigh up the move carefully before you go through with it.

    • Gazimoff says:

      I’ve had a look on the official realm forum, but there’s no-one really after anything from the looks of things. I’ve not approached anyone on SWC yet – I don’t want to waste anyone’s time if it’s not going to be a good fit for me.

      Definitely something I’m thinking carefully about – I don’t want to rush into a really bad decision.

  5. Psynister says:

    Leaving the guild is where I’d point you.

    If the one thing that you really want to do on a character is limited by his circumstance, then it’s time to change. Your friends are going to understand, whether they’re real friends or net friends. If you’re never raiding with them then you’re not really part of the guild in anything other than gchat and which tabard you wear.

    I’ve been in your position three times now. The first two times I left the character in there anyway. People in the guild still knew me, they still talked to me, and we still did things here and there, but because I wasn’t part of the raid group is like the difference between being friends at school and friends at home. The ones that are with you for a few minutes here and there throughout the day are still your friends, but the ones you hang out with for hours after you get home are the ones that get the wedding invitations. Eventually I just left the characters in the guild alone for about 8 months and then logged back into the server and just deleted the toons. Checking in with the guild I got plenty of greetings and how you been’s and such, but I was still just another recognized and friendly face in the crowd.

    The third time it happened I just left as soon as I found out things weren’t working and I wasn’t going to get anywhere with the direction I wanted to go. I left right away and found a new home which is where I’m at right now. We’ve got raids going almost every day of the week, only 3 of them as scheduled progressions, but which raids you go to are up to you. Even with daily raids I only go 1-3 times per week unless I’m just really feeling raid friendly and want to jump into more of them.

    Do yourself a favor, and move on to another guild.
    Psynister recently posted..Plans for CataclysmMy Profile

    • Gazimoff says:

      Yep, it’s going to be a little tricky to find what I’m after (mature, weekend raiding, good progress, etc). I’m hoping that it won’t be too difficult to find, but I think it’s one of those things that will take a while to find. My gut feel is that I’m just too damned picky 🙂

  6. Tarinae says:

    Leaving a guild is a hard decision. It isn’t one I take lightly, and as a guild leader, is one I stress should be thoroughly thoughout. However, I also know that if my guild isn’t doing it for someone, I want THEM to be happy. They need to find where THEY fit. And if it turns out they want to come back, they always have an open door.

    I have also seen what NOT being part of the raid team can do. I have lost a few amazing member, including one of my last 2 founding members after 2 years. But as a guild leader, I know these things are inevitable. I left a few guilds before I decided to make my own home.

    So I encourage you to leave the guild and explore the other options your server has to offer. I have thought long and hard about transfers and customizations for a character of my own and financially, I just feel that it wasn’t the best decision. So maybe, if that plays any kind of part, I would extend a search into the server youre on, away from your guild. You never know what is laying around out there. Some of the quietest guilds are the Kingslayers if that is the kind of content you are looking to achieve.

    And, if you know most of your guild in real life, I am sure that if you find it IS what you want, you would be welcome back.

    But whatever your deicision, handle it diplomatically.

    • Gazimoff says:

      Agreed. The guild I’m currently in are a great bunch of people and I wouldn’t want them to think I didn’t like them. My reasons for looking around are more practical than that. I agree with you as well about transfers – they’re pricey and there’s no assurance that I’d get to where I needed to be.

      Here’s hoping I find something where I am 🙂

  7. Bordy says:

    My Horde characters are all in a guild and I never raid with them, but then there is the benefit of them being an RP guild and having an RP objective outside of raiding (which most members do). I could only raid (if I wanted to) alternate weeks and even then only certain days. Since there is so much in the game I wish to achieve, I am quite happy with this arrangement. It depends what you are looking for. I have raided and probably will again sometime, but it’s not my rasion d’etre. If you still wish to raid, go look for a guild on that or another server that can offer you what you need. Let’s face it though, all the effort you put in to get kit from raiding the same place over and over is going to mean nothing once you’re a couple of levels into Cataclysm, whereas achievements, RP and relationships will always mean something. Then again, the world would be a boring (or mind-destroying) place if everyone thought as I did.

    Work out what means the most to you and focus on that .. for now anyway.