Guild Loyalty – Gear or Friends

While there are a variety of reasons for someone to stay with a group of people in this game, a good majority of these reasons can be boiled down to the following two points:

  1. This group of people can get me gear
  2. I enjoy playing with this group of people

Addressing the first point, some people are motivated solely by gear. While gear is a bit lower on my priority list, I can see why people are so moved by getting it. I can hear it now. “It’s shiny.” “It’s new.” “I can pull more threat.” ” Crit heal for 20k!” “I just gained 80 DPS.”

To be honest, other than the empty feeling of burnout when there are no more upgrades, there’s nothing inherently wrong with playing the game solely for gear. I personally find it to be a bit of a empty reason to play, but if that’s your bag, by all means go for it. I’m a firm believer that no one should tell you how to play your game.

Moving on to the second point, there are other people that stick with a group because they enjoy their company. They consider each other to be friends. They’ll run content for fun whether they can get gear from it or not. These are my kind of people, and the core of my guild.

That’s not to say that we’re not driven to progress. I don’t think anyone that’s in the guild ran Naxx in it’s original form, or in beta, so it was brand new content for us. We cleared it in less than 4 weeks, and under 20 raid hours. I’m sure the more hardcore players are laughing right now, but for a casual guild with little experience in the raid, we cleared it pretty fast. Sarth was a one shot, and Maly was done on the first night of attempts.

It is possible to have a group of people that perform well, be friends and enjoy the game without using gear as a motivator. That being said, my guild is painfully close to being able to run our own 25 man raids. I use the word painfully because we can’t seem to get over the hump. Despite the fact that we are a well established guild on our server, there are about 25 other newer guilds about the same size as ours that are all vying for recruits as well.

I’d love nothing more than to get to the point that we’re raiding 25 mans every week. Some of the members of my guild took their alts to another guild and are decked out in 25 man gear. I have no issue with this. The other raid is (local time) from 11-2am, and it in no way interferes with our raid schedule.

However, there were two other members of my guild, another husband and wife team, that were still guilded and going with this other guild on their mains. Again, this was a 25 man raid, so it didn’t have any effect on our raids. This is again something else I don’t take issue with. I myself go to pug 25 mans.

The other guild had asked them to retag to their guild temporarily to get a full guild clear. When they talked to me about it, I said, no problem, just let the guild know, and I’ll reinvite you tomorrow. Then I wake up this morning and…

This is not going where you think it is…

I have a private message on our guild website. Upon checking it, I find out that the other guild has enough people to do the 25 man without them, and pressured them into joining or they couldn’t go. Reading further, when the wife asked her husband “So, do you think there’d be any forgiveness for in this world or the next if we left Bucklers for ******?” His reply: “It’s simple. The gear is one place, my friends are another, and my friends are more important.”

Folks, that’s friendship and loyalty there.

– Sam

4 Responses to Guild Loyalty – Gear or Friends

  1. shibumi says:

    Indeed – that is the difference, and the husband nailed it.
    I’ve (for better or worse) never played with raid, much less gear in mind. However in the last 3 or 4 months I moved from my old main (hunter, lvl 80) back to my rogue. *then* I started digging for how to properly (hmmm not quite the right word) play the rogue. It had been well over a year, and while he was 65 it was a major mindset change to play him.
    I’m in a good guild, and he was invited to a couple of sessions and actually got a tier something chest piece. first and only one. ooo, sez me. this is interesting. then i started reading and watching number – hit cap, what’s that? now I know, now I have a deadly rogue, and am more inclined to raid, because I know he’s doing well. My hunter just hurt stuff from afar, along with pets. my rogue is right there. much fun.

    My guild, while pretty stable, is not large enough for 25 man. we just don’t have the folks, nor the time coordinated, to do that. The heavy hitters pug or work with guilds we’ve worked with in the past. Now I’m starting to see the reasoning behind it.

    Howevef, like Bucklers, our guild is friends first, raid second (or further). That makes me happy. I have untagged alts that I play once in a while, sure. But my highest levels are in the guild. it’s a comfy feeling, knowing they are there. Will we ever grow to 25 man? dunno. We have the numbers, but timing is tough. We range all over the US, including Hawaii so timezones do hinder. But it’s not our primary reason for playing.

    I enjoyed your story. It *is* what it is all about. thanks

    /shibumi

  2. Lightningrod says:

    Yea this was a really good post. I’m one of the people that moved one of my chars off of bucklers. I’ve only done this once before and I noticed I did have. Two main rules:

    Their raid times can’t interfere with bucklers’.

    I always have at least one char in bucklers.

    Forever a pirate

  3. Squishy says:

    Great story,

    I wish the people in my guild were as honorable as the people in yours.
    We are large enough to clear 25 man content and have done all that is available at this time. The problem we have is that the guild made a slow move from friendly enjoyable runs to annoying loot whoring runs, not pleasant at all and causing my wife and I to lose the love we once had for running with many of these folks. I am a Holy priest and she is a rogue, with each raid there seems to crop up a new set of issues, whether its rules not being followed, people being told that they should not be rolling on certain items, druids rolling on cloth……the list goes on and only becomes more annoying.
    I feel our days are numbered.

  4. Lyndiana says:

    This post is pretty old, but if anyone ever stumbles across it, I want them to know the full conclusion of this:

    The 25-man guild that was putting pressure on the couple to leave Bucklers never cleared Ulduar (the then-current content). They fell apart shortly after the incident Sam tells here, and many of those players CAME to Bucklers and are still with us. Unlike that guild, Bucklers went on to clear all of Ulduar, then ToC, and now ICC. This couple is still there, and enjoying themselves as much as ever, along with everyone else who’s a “true Buckler”.

    As our guild has taken to saying now: “If I’m not playing with Bucklers, I’m not playing at all.”

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