While the selling of guilds may have been something people did initially, I have rarely seen people selling guilds anymore, because it is too easy to make one. It use to require 10 signatures, now only 4. A group of 10 people can quickly advance one to 25 through questing, dailies, raiding, running dungeons. The money from cash flow is (edit) not negligible, a check last night put it at 30% of our weekly total with maxing guild challenge dungeons/scenarios/raid. With a guild of over 960 I think we outlay more money in repairs than we see from the cash flow perk. Perhaps if I turned off all guild repairs it might amount to a few thousand gold a week with the amount of people we have doing things, it has never been a noticeable number to me as far as our bank funds rising. So taking that out will be a huge deal for me. Reading comments on why it is happening last night lead me to believe that the manner in which I run our guild and how I treat guild members may be the exception. I try to maintain a balance in what I set repairs at so that regardless of what they do in guild, everyone has an option to tap into repair money, because they contribute to it by doing content, running dungeons, scenarios and raids. At this point in the expansion it is harder and harder to get people to run dungeons or scenarios because aside from the 250g to the guild, there is really nothing they need, except Valor, and for many even that is no longer needed except to possibly level up another piece of gear, and honestly the 7500g potential from them hardly covers a large guilds costs to run, and can be abused by a group of 5 that could form a guild and inside of 10 weeks quickly amass a small fortune, even excluding the 1000g from raiding. Or the group of 5 that creates 5 guilds and maxes them all every week with alts. There are plenty of ways to abuse the system.
In my eyes, the problem is not how hard it is to create a guild, but in how easy it has become, and the lack of tools to maintain one. The in game guild search is a joke. A quick look at Area 52 shows over 7,000 guilds, my own server Borean Tundra has over 3100. Making one has never been a problem. The problem lies in ones being created by those that are not prepared to run one or that make one for the wrong reasons. The raid leader unhappy with guild leadership that goes off with half a team to form a new guild that cannot fill a raid team then complains it’s because they are not level 25 with perks, people that feel they can do better on their own and grab a few friends only to find all the benefits gone missing and having to work at now running a guild, and blaming it on not being 25. Those that think recruiting is impossible since they are not a 25, yet do not talk about their guild in General or Trade chat, do nothing to promote their guild on the forums, or on server Facebook groups, or even Twitter, yet will download an auto invite program and let it invite everyone under the sun, and wonder why people leave because there is no one online to welcome them. Those programs are definitely a blight on guild recruiting, that needs to be blocked in some manner.
The in game guild search is full of level 1-25 guilds that are inactive, abandoned, or were created because someone thought it would be a money maker for them. I feel the order in which guilds are listed for people to browse should be based on weekly activity, with a cap of the top 20 contributors to prevent guilds like mine from dominating the top ranks over ones with fewer members. At the very least this will bump down all of those inactive guilds. Those guilds with no activity for a month should be removed from the guild search feature. As a default the guild invite for a person should be turn on to block until it is turned off. A quest should be introduced in game to show a person new to the game where to look, and what a guild is in some form so they will have a positive experience with the first they join and a means for them to see where it is and how to find what they may be looking for.
I just hope that we will not see all of the other items that have taken time to unlock, pets, mounts, and BoA gear be made available to anyone that makes a guild, because it is hard work, and we can’t recruit people because only those guilds that have been around forever with hundreds of members got the achievements, or we can’t get the 8th tab because we cannot get all the races and class combo’s. There needs to be an incentive to not only make a guild, but to keep it running, and to encourage people to not only stay, but to work together to make it grow and prosper. I would like to see better rewards given to guilds that do things for their members, or rewards from working as a team, even if they are only cosmetic items. Keep the needed perks, like mail, and mass rez as available to all, but cosmetic or perks not required as incentives to work together.
The raids and content in the game are not what keeps it running, that’s just things for people to do, what keeps it running is the social interaction. We are not some elite raiding guild pushing for server firsts heroic progression. We are successful as a guild because we have 20+ people online in the evenings, people that talk and laugh and congrats others. I have seen so many join that have come from guilds they were invited to with no one on, except on a raid night, or the weekend and they felt like outsiders. People want to play this game with others, want to do things with others. If you really want to look at those that abused players, look to those that use your own product against you. Sites that are making money off of your product, encouraging people to pay yearly fees to help them figure out complex systems you have created, through needed add on programs to play.
Edit. It really matters not anything I say. I am 0.0000125% of the player base, even if 40,000 others agreed with me we still would not be more than 0.5% of the players in game. They will design the game to the way they feel it will appeal to the group of people with the same views and vision of how it should be. When that finally gets to a point where it is beyond the game I fell in love with and becomes something I dread logging in to, then they will lose my paltry $15 a month and not bat an eye.
I think this may be my last blog post on WoW for a while. I still have not purchased WoD, I am still looking for that OMG thing that will make me want to pre order, but while it may have come close with Garrisons, there is still nothing that is grabbing me.