Monday, January 26, 2009

Parasitic Oscillations

"Raiding guild".

What constitutes a raiding guild? Does it welcome new players and help them come up to the level that they can raid? Or does it exclude all but those that are a certain level, and a certain spec, and have certain equipment already?

Over the past year I've seen our guild torn asunder by an alleged "raiding guild" and it's starting to come home how much these people are ... parasites ... on the rest of the server.

Here's an example.

Summertime, we had a new feral bear druid join the guild. He was sub-70 at the time. He quested with us, we helped him get his epic flight form, and when he made 70 we helped key him, and then put up with his inability to reliably tank anything in Karazhan because his gear was sub-par. We hung in there with him, and he grew into a major tanking terror. He asked if his wife could join the guild, and we started to gear her up.

Shortly after WotLK came out, when he saw that the mains in the guild were not playing night and day to get to 80 as fast as him, he went off and joined "a raiding guild", and took his wife with him.

This scenario has played over and over again.  And it's finally dawned on me that these people contribute nothing to the overall experience. They use other guilds as incubators from which they pull the most talented without any recompense or even thanks to the hapless rubes that just gave them their newest Arcane mage or what have you.

They are parasites.

They could not survive without us. And they leech our health away, every day they exist.

I'm sure there are exceptions. But I think this is the general rule.

So now you know. When you hear that extra contempt in my voice when I say "raiding guild", know where that contempt comes from.

I think we need to find some way for "raiding guilds" to contribute back to the ecosystem that they are exploiting.  This is not a WoW issue, though it is raised in bold relief in WoW because of the number of players, number of raiding guilds, and the amount of endgame material there is to exploit. What's really needed is some form of embedding of toons into the social groups they become part of that would apply real consequences for what, in the real world, would be a major upheaval if you did it yourself.

Right now, though, loyalty is not rewarded nearly as well as sheer disloyalty and underhandedness. If you play it right, you can get leveled up in no time, and then make a break to join one of your server's "premier" guilds that care not a whit for loyalty or honesty, but merely that you show up at the appointed time with what you said you were bringing, and follow the instructions given to you without fail. That's it.

Call that a "gaming experience" if you want. I call it "a second job." Sorry, got one, and I play WoW partly to relax after all that. You want two jobs? You should get a second one that makes money.

No wonder our GM shows all the signs of burning out. She's had to put up with this crap for four years. I'd eat my own soul under those circumstances.

If we get back into raiding, I'm gonna suggest that all raiders be required to put up a 500 gold "security deposit", nonrefundable.  If we're doomed to gear up raiding guilds, at least we can get repair costs out of it.

Think she'll go for it?