Row, row, row your boat

Row, row, row your boat,
Gently down the stream.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Life is but a dream.

The above nursery rhyme sometimes serves as a metaphor for life’s difficult choices and I want to use it to refer to the choices you need to take as a guild officer. Lately, It has been rough in game. Not like we progressed our way on to the Lich King all of a sudden, no, in fact we’re still stuck on that Rotface dude (Altough we killed him several times before after hours of wiping). What I ment by rough is that managing the guild has become hard to achieve. I ran arround for a couple of days deciding if my time as an officer had come and if I should say goodbye. The main reason for that is that I feel like I’m not bringing the same solutions any more wich pleases most of our members. At the moment, we need to choose a path wich can have a large effect on our social ingame environment.

I was getting sick of logging into the game and awnsering people’s questions about what’s on the planner, who will raid, who will not raid, when will they raid, when will they continue, etc. On my left side I see a guild that is getting bored of the first 4 bosses in Icecrown and they want to see more. The left side doesn’t care anymore about the badges and the loot, they just want to achieve something and push themselves further to get a new boss down. On my right side I see a guild that still wants to farm those 4 bosses because it brings in their weekly badges, if they are lucky they can loot some new items. The right side isn’t ready for stepping up and evaluating their personal performance. They want to be carried.

I feel like I’m right in between those 2 sides. I’ve saw those bosses aswell, I still enjoy doing them but the element of suprise is gone. It’s farming to me but not to others, they still need this expierience. I see people who aren’t ready to progress but still insist they diserve to be a part of that progress group. It’s like Fugaru is walking with the progress side and as a person I’m sticking close to the people that still need the help. I feel it’s my task as an officer to be there for them. And I know I shouldn’t bother but if I leave them behind, I feel like I’m ignoring our guilds values.

“Not taking decisions is a bad decision” – from the great warrior Sigge

Right,…how do we handle this? I believe most of our guildmembers understand that something needs to be done and most of them understand the dilemma. I’m not going to talk about the details on how we’re handling stuff in the future but I did made up my mind: We’ll take a decision, we’ll communicate it and we’ll listen to people’s comments. Our decision will be permanent and we realize that it’s not the best decision for every single individual. We’re aiming for the best decision that helps the guild.

I came across a very well written article of Ciderhelm, one of the founders of tankspot.com. The article is more an open letter to Blizzard and how he feels that WoW is in need of reinventing itself. He points towards some differences between the hardcore guilds and the more casual player. One comment he made is especially true for our situation:

For me, my biggest frustration and source of burnout in the 99% has been when I have been doing a complex job in an encounter without mistake for hours and days and having to deal with the few who seem to always find new and interesting ways to die.

The issue present for serious gamers in the 99% is that they rarely are given challenges or means of discovering new and interesting ways to play their class or play the game. They only need to be as good as the worst players in their raid, and have little motivation to be better except for personal pride

When I look at our memberbase I see a lot of people that are decent players. With a helping hand, they can do the job. But most of the time they get used to it and forget to stand on their own feet. If you let people figure things out themselves or assign them to a really critical role in the encounter, they might suprise you. And I strongly believe we should do this more often. It will not work for everyone, but it will for the majority of our players.

Our new strategy will be like this: we want to progress and every member can be a part of it as long as they are willing to increase their performance. We’re not pushing people anymore, we’re going to pull people. Right now, we’re pushing people into new content but there is no one in front to open the next door to progress. If the push group can go stand in front of the guild and starts pulling people across the doorstep, I believe we’ll advance as a guild and as an individual.

Let’s see how it turns out, not sure how big the impact will be but I’m sure there will be one. It would be sad if it didn’t had an effect at all, than I really need to reconcider my position as an officer and as a guild member.

Row, row, row your boat,
Gently down the stream.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Life is but a dream.
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~ by mrdistefano on February 25, 2010.

5 Responses to “Row, row, row your boat”

  1. Point on Steven. It’s funny , I did also read Ciderhelms post and I thought about linking it on the forum :P.

    • Well I do not really agree with Ciderhelm or at least some of the things he mentions isn’t how I feel about WoW. But I can definitly understand his (and probably others) frustrations when you’ve seen the game evolve over the years.

      He doesn’t feel encouraged anymore to spend hours of time into a game wich is only a déjà vu to him and with his article he politly asks Blizzard to do something about it.

      Very nicely written and I suggest every WoW player that has been in the game for a couple of months to read it aswell. It makes you see how top players think about the game currently. I’m curious if Blizzard will pick this up and what they’re going to do with it.

      I can only ask…don’t introduce new mechanics, we aren’t even able to take down the existing ones 🙂

  2. It is a difficult topic and I am glad that I am in the officers shoes. You know my opinion by now 😛 and I’ll wait and see what direction you’ll take the guild.

    I respect the effort you guys put into the guild and I agree that you simply need to steer us in a direction and then people can decide if it fits them.

    Ow and new mechanics aren’t necessarily more difficult. For instance I loved the vehicle combat in Ulduar but that wasn’t really difficult.

  3. Drive, drive, drive your car,
    Gently down the street.
    Merily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
    Life is just a treat.

    Guess we have a members song and an officers song now…

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