Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Guild Loyalty

As I was browsing through other blogs the other day I came across this post on Big Bear Butt, regarding some drama in their guild. After reading the post and most of the comments it was evident that I had a much different opinion of the situation than everyone else that posted. The post boiled down to two issues. In the first I completely agree with the poster. Some new members ninjaed their Kara raid id and went to another guild. I completely understand his point on that issue and I wouldn't play with those guys ever again either.

The second issue is a little more complicated in my opinion. It revolves around a player that the poster had mentored and thought of as a good friend, that ended up leaving the guild for a more progressed guild. I made a post in his comments basically saying I think his anger is a little misplaced. Unfortunately, it looks like I offended him even though that was not my intent. However, It brought up a question for me. What do we owe our guilds? When is it ok to leave, and are there situations where it is not ok for a member to leave?

Disclaimer: I have no intention of leaving my guild. I think it is a great guild and enjoy playing with most of the members. On top of that, even if I did want to leave it isn't like I have a whole lot of options since I play a moonkin. (but then again. Isn't this something that someone who was leaving would say? Oh well. I guess you will just have to trust me.) Also, I don't like posting peoples names here, but since BigBearButt did it I will also for clarity.

I think I understand how BigBearButt feels. Both of the raiding guilds I have been a part of have lost key members at times. My current guild has survived. My last one did not. I will be honest. When we lost those people I was pissed. The main example at FoC was when we lost one of our main healers. This was a guy that came to us in all greens and blues. He got into raids very quickly because we needed healers. He performed well and was one of our most consistent raiders. As a result he got a ton of gear, all of it earned. After a couple of months he decided to leave for a more progressed guild. I was pissed and had expected a little more loyalty, but I had to admit that most of my anger was more due to how this hurt my raiding than anything he had done.

So, lets look at the issues.
1. Jayboi (the guildie in question) seemed to be well liked at first, but did have some personality issues. According to BBB he was a bad flirt, would be hostile in Gchat if people did something he thought was stupid, and got in to a big fight (the subject of which was not posted) with another long time member that caused the other member to gquit and leave the game after the guild sided with Jayboi. How this info fits into the situation I don't know, but I am sure that several people in the guild had a low opinion of him which was not helped by him gquiting.

2. Jayboi became more withdrawn from the guild after a period of time. Not being as chatty. Played less in general but still showed up for raids. He also ran several raids with other guilds but cleared it with his guild first.

What I think are BBB three core issues.
3. Jayboi was an officer in the guild. I also would expect more loyalty from an officer than I would from a normal member, but then again he pays his 15 dollars a month also. So, how far does that extend? In my opinion it doesn't matter if you are a peon or a GM, if you are unhappy or get a better opportunity then you should be able to take it.

4. Jayboi flat out lied to BBB when he was asked if he was about to bail on the guild. I completely understand BBB being pissed about this. It sounds like BBB spent a lot of time on Jayboi and considered him a friend. It really sucks to be lied to by a friend, but I have couple of problems with this issue. The first is the nature of wow friendships. I don't think they are real friendships. There are several people in my guild that I have played this game with regularly over the past 8 months, but I don't know their first names and have only limited personal information about them. The second issue is that it isn't that big of a lie and I'm not sure I wouldn't have done the same thing. If you tell someone you are thinking about leaving it will affect the way you are treated. Your probably not going to get the benefit of the doubt. You may loose out on raid spots or on loot. Personally I don't think this is fair when you have put in the work which BBB clearly states that Jayboi had.

5. According to BBB, Jayboi got the last piece of gear he needed from kara and left the guild right after. This insinuates that Jayboi joined the guild purely to get gear then bailed as soon as he got what he wanted. If this is true than it sucks, at the same time BBB says that Jayboi earned his gear with a high quality and consistent performance. Is it wrong to accept gear when you are thinking about leaving even though you have build up a ton of DKP and made a ton of runs? I don't think so. Also, coming from a moderately progressed guild myself, and know for a fact that one piece of gear doesn't matter. The quality of the player is the key.

The analogy I keep thinking of is a business. Do you get mad at a co-worker who uses his experience at his current job to get a better job? I don't think so. In fact, I think it is kind of expected. If you are a manager and you suspect that one of your employees or co-workers is interviewing for another job, do you get mad at them when they tell you they are not, but leave a little bit later? I wouldn't tell anyone because what if it doesn't work out. You don't have a new job and your old one has written you off giving projects and rewards to other employees because they don't think they can depend on you. If you had been offered a new job, wouldn't you hold out for that last bonus before you left? I mean you had worked hard for the year before to earn it. Don't you deserve it?

After thinking about it for a while the only time I think that it is wrong for someone to leave a guild is when they have received special treatment for the good of the guild. I have two examples. The first is the main tank. It is not uncommon for guilds to gear their main tank first as he is usually the single most important individual player in raid. Doing so allows you to see more content sooner then having 4 or 5 tanks that are only moderately geared. If this main tank leaves the guild after he has received the majority of tanking gear then he is screwing the guild setting them back months. The second example is when the guild specifically raids old content to get one or two new members gear. My guild has recently run Kara a lot to get badges but also to get some of the new members gear. I think it would be underhanded if those people were with us for two or three weeks got a ton of gear then left for another guild without having given much to WA.

Maybe Jayboi falls into this exception, but there is only a small indication that he got priority for raid spots and BBB said that he earned his gear.

I don't know. Maybe I am completely off base. Anyway let me know what you think.

Toon Update:
Graylo - Things haven't been going to bad for him. We have had a bit of an issue getting the right group togeather to attempt Vashj. Oddly enought the issue has been DPS. We have had to many tanks on, enough or maybe a little to many healers, and not enough DPS. Vashj only requires two tanks and can be done with 7 or 8 healers. DPS is key in this fight because you have to burn the adds down really quick in phase 2 and in phase 3 you need to get her down quickly so you don't get overwhelmed by the spore bat puke. So, we need 15 or 16 dps in raid and have been getting only 10-12. I must say this is an odd problem that I have not seen before in my raiding experiance. Graylo did get one piece of loot this week. I got 60 badges and picked up
[Moon-walkers]. The badge belt ([Starfire Waistband]) would have been a bigger upgrade for me but I really need the spell hit on the boots. Plus, now that here are badges in Kara I am able to get them fairly quickly and it shouldn't be to long before I get the belt if I need it.
Graypal - I put a lot of work into him over the weekend. I was trying to use up all the rested XP before I go on christmas vacation, and got him almost to level 63 in the process. Unfortunately I did not use up all the rested XP, but oh well. One final note on Graypal, I love Shadow Word: Death. Awesome spell.
Grayfel - I also did a little work on him. I used up all of his rested XP and got him halfway through lvl 15. Not a huge step I know but I don't do a lot with him.

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