The Great White Whale.. of Guilds

In General by Babylonius

With Legion on the, slightly less, distant horizon; many people are looking at their current guilds and trying to decide whether or not to stay there or go on a search. Should you find yourself thinking about leaving, here are my suggestions.

The Decision

First you must decide why you’re leaving your current guild. Are you unhappy with some aspect of things, or do you think you could be more happy elsewhere? Is there an external factor that is forcing the change such as a change in schedule or life circumstance? These are the things you have to figure out before you even decide to leave or not. If you are in a guild that is US200, but want to break into US100, ask yourself why. If you can’t think of a reason to leave, then you may want to reconsider leaving. The grass isn’t always greener.

The Search

Guilds look for different stuff depending on what you’re looking for. I’ve switched guilds quite a bit in my many years of playing. The philosophy I found worked best was to look for the guilds that fit me, not the guilds that I fit. It may seem like semantics but you need to be sure that a guild’s schedule, atmosphere, progression, etc. is at a level you want, THEN you find out if you’re a good fit for them. Too many people rush into finding guilds then realize they are not happy.

Split things into 4 categories:

  • NEED – The deal breakers: for some it is time, or number of days, or progression, for others it is server type or faction.
  • WANT – Things that you want from a guild but you can be somewhat flexible. Do you mind fighting for a spot, or want one waiting for you?
  • CAN LIVE WITH – These are the things that you can compromise on or really don’t matter to you. Not everyone cares about server population.
  • DEFINITELY NOT – The opposite of NEED. Things that fall into this category will immediately disqualify a guild. Do you really want to raid at 8am?

There are things you need to figure out: do you want a guild that completes Mythic before the next tier? A guild pushing for server/region/world firsts? A guild that gets most of the Mythic bosses down but maybe not the final boss? A guild that will see a few Mythic bosses, but really spends most of the time in Heroics?

All of these are different guilds and look for different things. When I joined my guild, Occasional Excellence, the #1 thing that was important to me was Efficiency. I knew I could raid up to 3 nights, and up to 3.5 hours a night, but that I didn’t want to raid 12 hours a week anymore. I looked for guilds that consistently, over several tiers, killed bosses with the least time spent on them. I included time after they killed the final boss till the next tier in my averages. I found my guild that was the #2 or #3 most efficient guild in the US or world on several consecutive tiers, and who’s times and dates worked with my schedule, and I applied there. I knew I could have had my pick of guilds with my skill level, but what the guild could provide to me was more important than what I could provide to the guild.

Find what a place that has what you’re looking for first, not a place where you think you’re what they’re looking for.

The Application

Great, so you’ve narrowed it down to a few options, but they all have applications to fill out.

All guilds want an app with solid mechanics; which you have, survives; which WW is really good at, learns quicker than their current players, and is enjoyable to be around. Be upfront with your skill level, downplay yourself a bit in your app, but be honest. If you don’t analyze your own logs, then don’t say you do. Do say if you post to reddit to the “experts” to get help, or whatever you do. If you spend hours outside of raid pouring over every second of your logs then say that. But if you say something on your apps, make sure you can back it up and then some: the app sets the bar, your trial should exceed it.

Put time into your app, answer their questions, look for other examples of an application that was accepted to get an idea of what they’re looking for. This is your first impression, if you half-ass it then they’ll assume you’ll half-ass everything else.

The Trial

So you’ve been accepted, they’ve looked at your application, maybe had an interview over a voice chat. You’ve transferred your toon to their guild and the next raid is coming up. There are a few things that have to happen first.


If they have kill videos, watch them. If they have logs that you can look at, look at them. If they have a raid leader you can talk to, talk to them. Do anything you can to be as prepared as possible before the raid even starts. Ask if you’re going to have any  special assignments on a boss. If you’ve never killed something that they have, ask for advice or things to look out for. Nothing will impress a guild more, than saying “I’ve got this”, and that being true.


Channel you’re inner Bee Gees and don’t die. No one will be upset if you are killed by something you haven’t seen before, but everyone will be impressed if you aren’t. DPS or HPS or TankPS(?) don’t mean anything if you’re dead. Your first priority is to live, everything else comes after.

 3. Do what you were recruited to do

If you’re a DPS, then do that. If you’re a Healer, then heal. Don’t start off your trial by trying to do more than you’re being asked to do. You weren’t recruited for your L33T healer DPS. If you’re coming in during progression, don’t volunteer for a special job unless you’re 100% sure you can do it. If they ask you to do it, then you better get 100% sure real quick.

 4. Be social

Remember, its a group of people; eventually you may want to spend time with them outside of raid hours. However, don’t go 100% right away. If you’re a social butterfly, then consider sitting back and listening for a day or two to get a feel for things. If you’re a shy introvert, then do your thing, but make sure they know you’re there. If you have a question about a boss, then ask it when appropriate. No one wants a raider who is just a number and character on a screen.

Good Luck

I hope some of this will help some people find what they are looking for in a guild. The biggest key is figuring out what you want, then going to find it, not finding something and saying “I want that”, when you really don’t. Lots of people want to catch the big fish, but not everyone knows what to do once its on the hook or in the boat.