Sunday, 1 November 2009


It's always great to be part of something big. There's nothing better than banding together with a bunch of other fellows to accomplish a common goal. Beating down bosses side-by-side with your guildies is certainly an exhilarating experience that's almost without equal. There's a reason why players voluntarily put themselves through blood, sweat and tears every raid night and it doesn't just come down to 'phat loot'. The feeling of comradeship that most successful players gain from running instances is the nearest to true friendship many MMOers will feel during their whole young adult life.

Unfortunately there are some players out there that have never come close to that level of bliss in their entire raiding career. In 99.9% of cases, this is due to them being holed up in guilds that don't have the capacity to raid. This may be down to several things, ranging from peeps not possessing the right gear, to members that are willing to raid simply flaking out. I've iterated many solutions to these issues before, whether it be letting folks acquire equipment independently to growing inner-guild relationships. However, it could take a long time for these factors to come together. Your guild may not be up to raiding standard for months.

Alliances offer a quick work-around and allow you to potentially begin raiding immediately. Even if you're a high-performance organisation already, alliances permit you to get 4-5 of your best players and combine them with the greatest from 2-3 other guilds. This allows all of you to try out content that none of you may have never seen otherwise. Hopefully you can understand the importance of good alliances - no matter where your raid guild falls on the hierarchy. They're ridiculously easy to facilitate and sustain so long as everyone enjoys themselves.

Starting an alliance is not hard. Begin by identifying guilds that are in a similar position to your own. Providing you're not an arsehole, you'll already have a good pool of friends to pick from. Even though that really well-geared dude who you hang around with in Dalaran's sewers isn't a guild leader, there's a good chance he'll introduce you to his friend who is. Don't be afraid to network and ask for introductions. Once you know some powerful people well enough, you can go ahead and send them an in-game letter. This just needs to be a 50-word proposal about the benefits of an alliance and how it would work. Ask if they're interested and then wait. So long as you articulate your argument appropriately and haven't gone after the best guild on the server, you'll find people will take a risk on an alliance. Then you only need to create a separate chat channel and decide on the alliance's terms. If you've run raids before, then most of the concepts will remain the same. There's just an extra element of coordinating your timetable to theirs and starting up a joint TeamSpeak. That's all you really need.

Drama will probably be the most difficult thing you'll have to deal with. Always try to remain emotionally detached from anything that could upset the links between your guilds. Don't be afraid to sit down with a fellow leader and work things out on an executive level. Don't dish out discipline on their troops without talking it through with their superiors first. They might not read LAG and may be very attached to the drama. Keep yourself dissociated and handle disruptions professionally. Alliances can provide guilds with a huge step up onto the raiding ladder. Don't let egotistical individuals get in the way of that. Isolate problem-causing people and deal with them or keep them away from activities involving allies.

To summarise:

  • Starting an alliance takes good networking and not much else.

  • Treat allied raids like you would normal raids. Schedule and run them the same. Getting nervous or apprehensive will result in poor performance.

  • Deal with drama professionally and impersonally.

[Now where I got my madd pixx from! Here, here and here.]

1 comment:

  1. You asked for my opinion about this. Here it is, for whatever it's worth. (I'm not a guild manager myself and I've never been.)

    I've been in a guild alliance once. It was during a couple of summer months when our guild and another guild due to vacations had problems to fill our 25 man raids. So we had an allience for a while. And even though it was the right thing for us to do at that point, it cost a ton of effort from the officers to make it work. So much work that they said "never more" after it. This summer we accepted a couple of cancelled raids instad but stayed on our own feet. Much better for everyone.

    About the model you're suggesting: yeah, it might work. But I really think, as you are pointing out yourself, that you risk to bring on yourself a ton of drama. On what do you base your decisions to pick certain players for this alliance and not others, who might want to tag along as well? I know there are guilds where you have different sorts of ranks - casuals side by side with raiders. And I guess it's a solution for those guilds. I on my side think that dedicated raiders will have a happier and simpler lifte in a more pure raiding guild and casuals in a casual guild.

    Why shouldn't this alliance you talk about form a new raiding guild instead, where they can play together with other players who share their view on what's fun in the game? So much simpler and less risk for drama.

    On the other hand I've heard about people who are happy raiding cross-guild-wise. i think Fimlys at AATW is one of those. But my impression is that it's based on knowing the players, rather than asking a guild for their best players to form an allience, which is a quite different thing to do.