The Chaos Theory

The wife and I are in different guilds now.  We both appreciate the structure and organization of my guild, but she kind of got sideways of their threshold to raiding.  I made it into their raiding cadre with two characters now, and it was effort.  Getting there with my Warrior Tank was particularly painful.  Getting there with my Elemental Shaman was far easier.  She’d have made it with her Elemental Shaman, but the barriers to her were something she chose not to overcome.  Her second night with a new guild found her in Karazhan.  Sadly, that guild decided not to field two Karazhan teams thereafter and instead concentrate on their “A” team.  (Their “A” team had not done a full clear yet.  They’ll get there.  She’s not in their “A” team.)  And when half that “A” team of theirs bailed and joined a guild more into raiding, she was left with a group of people who logged on and just existed in the game.  She’s willing to work towards progression.  But to sit there idling… No thanks.

We have a couple of friends, another couple, that we’ve known in-game for quite some time.  All the way back to fighting dark iron dwarves in the Cauldron.  And our first “old-style” assaults on Jintha’Alor in the Hinterlands.

They were with our first guild.  Left and joined a raiding guild that made it to Gruul’s Lair, before falling apart.  I convinced them join with the guild I wound up with, and whom I’m with now.  It was quite something to have these two along, passing on absolutely everything, since they’ve already gotten every upgrade for it.  They wound up joining some other friends (also guildies from the time of the dark iron dwarves) in a new guild.

Now my guild has very strict requirements to raiding with them.  You’re an initiate until you get six runs with the guild in.  These aren’t spur of the moment runs.  We have a calendar with runs five nights a week.  It’s got to be with the guild, to a scheduled instance, with someone of at least a certain rank in the group.  At that point you’ll then be required to run Heroics.  When I did it the requirement was for runs in 3 different zones.  Now the requirement has been raised, now that entry to Heroics has been made easy, to runs in each zone, i.e. 5 zones.  So if you’re a tank, you’ll need to successfully tank a heroic instance in every zone.  “Successful” is every boss downed in the same run.  Take your pick:  Heroic Durnholde Keep or Heroic Black Morass.  Heh.  If you’re a healer, you’ll need to heal them.  If you’re DPS, dps them.  Now you might see the burden is a lot higher on the tank and healer than on the DPS.    (Image success being a three-legged stool.  Take one leg away and you have failure.  The tank is one leg, the healer is another.  Now the 3 DPS, they share the 3rd leg.)

And that’s just the runs.  There is also the requirement to get +140 Arcane Resist.  No AR, no raiding.  This serves for the Curator fight.  Now it’s recognized that some raids never worry about it and do fine.  My guild chose to worry about it and every raider in Karazhan has that on them.  It’s helpful elsewhere (Setthik Halls) and serves as a hurdle to jump to show committment.  And gear.  At least 4 of the DS3 pieces, or their equivalent.

Farming the motes of mana for the +AR gear she’d need nowhere else, for nothing else, was one thing.  To never get that last Heroic she needed.  Nobody wants to run Heroics, do they?  You’re tanks burn out first, and the guild only needs 3 or 4, tops, for progression.

So the wife left my guild.  She joined a guild that had some old guildies from our first guild, and went to Karazhan with a group that didn’t worry about all this.  But they floundered.  Why stay around in a glorified chat channel, the folks she knew in the “A” team already having bailed, she /gquit.  Within 15 minutes of being guildless she’s whispered by another guild.  “Are you Resto?” they asked.  “No.”  “Would you be willing to respec?”  “Maybe.”  Next thing we know she’s in.  Oh, yeah, this was not prompted by her in the least.  They just invited an unguilded level 70 healer type.  (She’s got over 1000 +Healing, so her gear is decent.)  It’s also the guild where our friends wound up.  On getting invited she got a “DROOOONDA!” as greeting.  They’ve got two Karazhan raids going every week. And she’s been on one.  With my help, she’s been there for a full one-night clear.  They didn’t stop until it was done, and it got real late.

Now my own guild celebrated a bit of a milestone ourselves this week.  We had two Karazhan runs going at once.  Both teams required two nights since we do put a stop to things in accordance with our schedule.  So we feel we’re really close to starting Gruul’s with a really strong group.

Here’s where the “Chaos” comes in.  My wife’s guild uses an in-game calendar.  And they don’t follow it.  There’s Karazhan sign-ups.  Like last night for instance.  (No pun intended!)  She’s looking forward to getting back to Karazhan and learning how to heal in a raid.  So she signs up.  What do they wind up doing?  Gruul’s Lair.  I’m doing my Netherwing dailies on Msaker and she’s in Gruul’s Lair.  They don’t really explain the fight, so I tell her she’ll learn it by experiencing it.  They must have gotten King Maulgar because next thing I know she’s at Gruul himself!  I’ve never even seen him.  And she’s “raiding” him.  !!!  As they say “You’ve come a long way, Baby!”  I see two attempts to within the 30 percent point.  Not sure if they got him lower than that.  She’s got to log off and so she doesn’t see a successful Gruul’s kill.  But, who knows.  Maybe she would have if she stayed for a few more attempts.

Her guild is like Chaos.  They just go do stuff.  It looks like they get stuff done too.

My guild is like the Transit Authority.  We do stuff.  We might be late, but we’ll be on time.

We’re at about the same progression, because I know if we were actually in Gruul’s Lair, Gruul would die.

I wonder which modus operandi works best.  Those end-game guilds, the ones killing Illidian.

Are they Structured and Sure or Chaotic and Competent?

So I ask you, among my readers who are sporting T5+ gear, how does your guild do it?

Do you live by a structured approach, set and enforce high standards, be punctual to a fault.

Or, do you just get 24 of your buddies and just “git r done” because you’re all bored?


About Kinless

Gamer. Engineer. Lived lots of places.
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12 Responses to The Chaos Theory

  1. Matticus says:

    Kin, I have to say those entry requirements are one of the most strictest criteria I’ve ever seen.

    As a high level raider, I can say that the Guilds I’ve been with are associated with have high levels of expectations. They’re all very structured. There’s always a Plan B for something. It’s progression after all. It takes discipline to get that far in the game. You can’t just have yahoos yelling and screaming or singing in vent while tactics are being called for.

    Once you’re on farmable content however, everything becomes secondary nature. 8 months ago we were struggling through Karazhan. Now we do it with eyes closed talking about current events.

  2. ajdmacc says:

    My guild has recently downed Vashj but we’re pretty relaxed when it comes to structure. We like to start on time and invites go out b/w 7:30 & 7:45 but raid destination is subject to change anytime up until the first pull. It’s all dependent on who’s online and which fights we can do with the people we have. We also don’t have any specific advancement requirements to be a raider. If we have room and it’s your first night and you’re 1 of the 2 raid ranks (grunt = new raider, raider = full member) then you get an invite. If loot drops Raider ranked members get priority but this hasn’t stopped us from gearing up Grunts quite quickly. Moving from Grunt to Raider is based on officer approval and the biggest factor they take into consideration is attendance.

    The 140 AR resist for the Curator fight is a surprise to me but if it works for your guild who am I to say anything? The only people we geared up for AR for that fight were the tanks and the warlock who was eating the hateful bolts.

  3. Mindkiller says:

    Personally my guild only had scheduled Kara religiously for 2 months up untill 2 weeks ago. Now it is still 2 groups, with the 2nd group having been started at the begining of regular scheduled Kara. They stopped scheduling it and just picked a group out of who was on and the remainder going to group 2. After 2 months of scheduled raid there were over 25 members with a decne tamount of KAra and heroic gear. 3 weeks ago we moved HKM and Gruul to farm after only beating on him for a month. Once you get to the Gruul kill stage it becomes plausible to attack TK or ZA. Those how ever require people to pay attention a lot more and movement seems to be the Key in T5 encounters. Our guild headed into TK last Friday for a shot at Void Reaver. We basicly sailed throguh the trash with minimal deaths and only on wipe just before Void due to a lucky crit. 3rd attempt we downed Void on our first TK and First Void try. This week after blasting through Gruul (Downed him in an amazing 6.5 minutes) our ZA team finsihed our first clear there. SSC is in our sights too but focus will prolly be on ZA and TK with an eye to Mags.

    As to our structure: We shcedule the 25 mans we do and if possible, plan out the Kara teams’ days so we dont have everyone raiding. The ZA runs are usually impromtue after a 25 man or done instead of a Kara that night. Doesnt always go the way planned but being flexible is what got us the Void down. We adapt to what we feel like doing and it always seems to work. It might help that the guild has been together for over a year and has weathered several dry spells and grumpy feelings.
    Last time some one looked we were in the top 10 on our server for progression. might be hgher/lower since it was last checked before Void was kilt and ZA cleared.


    Honor- Duskwood

  4. Anonymous says:

    What to say? Since I had a had in creating those “strict” requirements, there was a purpose to them. The initial six runs with the guild are really to see if the player wants to stay in the guild–not us deciding to keep them; we have yet to actually kick anyone out for performance or other reasons of that nature.

    As to DS3 and Heroic Runs–you can’t believe the number of times we went on PuG Karazhan runs with people with level 65 quest greens and blues, who were handheld to get the Kara key, and getting past Moroes was luck. We went with one group four weeks in a row and hung at either Moroes or Opera for hours . . .

    So, we decided that we wouldn’t every wasted 10 people’s time for 6 or more hours because someone didn’t know how to play their class or have appropriate gear. So, we made the requirement for Heroics and DS3–and they we implemented a schedule and system to help people get the DS3 gear and Heroics done.

    The AR gear was needed–we simply didn’t have people who knew how to play their class well enough to put out enough DPS to down the flares and not wipe out our healers mana on the Curator. The fact that it makes Ikiss in Heroic Sethekk very doable is a bonus . . .

    We have since relaxed the AR gear requirement–the majority of our people have gotten nice gear, are doing well on DPS, and we don’t believe we will have the troubles we had with the Curator anymore.

    At heart–we don’t take a group of experienced raiders and go raid. We are building a guild of raiders where we are all “family” and know each other; the majority have never raided, and most of our folks never went on anything but PuG hell instance runs.

    In my opinion, when we do the 25-mans, we will own Gruul and Mag and put them on Farm in the first week or two and begin knocking out SSC and TK; I believe preparation, working with our folks, and the standards will show their merit.

    Or not, and people will leave and move on . . . as they have done. There is no one size fits all guild!

    Happy hunting and good luck to all!

  5. Rohan says:

    Kinless, the elite guilds view time fundamentally differently than the other guilds. They’re aggressive about new content like your wife’s guild is, but they are more structured.

    Read this article by Ciderhelm: Time Management for Raiding Guilds

  6. Kinless says:

    Interesting article there Rohan, thanks.

  7. Skindancer says:

    Heya Blackhoof. A nice, thought-provoking post. It’s something that lots of people ponder. I know Sistajuju and I have discussed this topic many times as we watch friends running Gruul’s, typically in some Frankenstein patchwork alliance or a guild that is essentially a semi-organized PUG. 😉

    I found the article by Ciderhelm that Rohan linked to be very interesting. I am sure it will have a positive influence on our scheduling choices.

    As for the discussion, well, as one of the people that was heavily involved in creating our standards, I have a lot to say on this topic, far too much for a comment. So, I made it today’s topic on my blog:

    Thanks for the discussion. A little reaffirmation of principles every now and then is a good thing. 🙂

  8. Kinzlayer says:

    From my past experiences most guilds have to become a bit more structured once they enter SSC/TK, if they weren’t before, since managing 25+ people for those long nights are a pain. With Gruul and Mag, the trash are easy and fast but in SSC/TK there are more of them and it’s a bit tougher if you got people going and coming.

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