I could talk about the recently announced changes to the talent trees, and how it seems that the choice for creative builds is pretty much being stripped from us, but I’m not going to. I could talk about the Real ID forum change that has the entire WoW community in an uproar, but Kae already said everything that I wanted to say here: http://dreambound-druid.blogspot.com/2010/07/security-shot-in-back.html . I will just state that if the Real ID forums go live, I will never be posting on Blizzard’s official forums, for any reason.
Instead, I’m going to talk about some rumors. Well…in a roundabout way, I’m to talk about rumors anyhow. Really, I’m going to talk about how those rumors influence my thoughts more than anything else. I know, I know, you are probably wondering if I’m going to get anywhere with this, and I swear I am!
No, these rumors don’t have anything to do with how someone found all of Bashiok’s private information after he posted his real life name on the forums, or how he made his facebook private after said clever people did all of this to prove their point. Instead the rumor that I’m going to discuss is one that I’ve heard any number of times over the past few months regarding the top progressing guild on our server. To be specific, the rumor is that they are imploding, due to burnout largely caused by two months of beating their heads against HM LK.
Now, let me be completely upfront here, I have absolutely no idea if these rumors are true. I don’t pretend to know the ins and outs of guild politics outside of my own guild, and I only follow gossip with a very loose ear to the ground, and even then I take 100% of what is floating around out there with a grain of salt. But, what this post is about is the thoughts that have been floating through my head as a result of these rumors.
I hope that they aren’t true. The guild in question brings a lot of talent to our server, and, brings some attention to our server. There have been any number of “hard core” progression focused guilds hosted on our server, and invariably, for whatever reason, they all burnout. I’m rooting a bit for this guild to pull through, and hoping that the rumors are just that, rumors. There is something to the saying that the candle the burns the brightest burns twice as long, but I hope that their candle has a bit more wax to burn through before expiring. I’d like to see them continue to succeed as a guild.
But the honest truth is, after cutting all the bullshit, what it really boils down to: I don’t want to be first. I have posted number of times about how I feel that sites like WoW Progress and Guild Ox are ruining the fun in the game for a lot of people. How people have become so interested in chasing down those rankings that many of them forget about having fun while playing. About truly enjoying the game, and the camaraderie that raiding should be about.
The truth is, if the top guild on the server ultimately does end up imploding, that makes us…the top guild on the server. At least as far as progression is concerned. And you know what? That is a responsibility that I don’t want. I am perfectly content to be second. Being number one carries with it a lot of pressure that I just don’t want.
If you slip, or someone else does better, there is disappointment about no longer being “number one”, this is a human reaction that is only natural for people to feel. That in turn means that there is pressure to maintain your position to try to keep people happy. Which in turns adds another degree of tension to raiding that, quite frankly, nobody needs. Tension and pressure that I don’t want to have.
We do a fairly good job about pushing progression for the sake of progressing, and largely ignoring the “wow progress mini game”. We won’t push progression to the point that it becomes a detriment to our guild, and sometimes that means that we progress a little more slowly. And you know what? That’s ok! It works for us. But what happens if all of the sudden we find ourselves on top? Will attitudes start to shift? Will people put more importance on holding that top stop than on having fun while we raid? It seems to me to be a very slippery slope. One that I don’t think I really want to navigate.
Right now, for the most part, people leave us alone and we mind our own business. I don’t want that to change. I want to continue quietly working our way through this expansion…and the next. I am hugely pleased with how we’ve done as a team, and I want to keep our focus where it is, and our goals the same. I suppose what I’m the most afraid of is a shift in mentality…driven largely by ego. I’m not saying that is what will happen, but I do think that it is a very real risk that will have to be monitored.
Please don’t confuse me with saying that I don’t want to do well, because I absolutely do. I just want to do well under the conditions that we’ve set out for ourselves, under our rules. We’ve done just fine with it so far. Sure we’ve had our bumps and our struggles, but largely it’s worked out in our favor. I don’t want added expectations piled on and I don’t want to play under some outside parties rules or ideologies of what we “should” be doing or how we “should” be performing.
So, I am rooting for that top guild. I hope they are able to keep everything together. I don’t know if anything will change if they end up closing their doors. I don’t know if someone else will pick up their torch and keep pushing the level of progression that they were. But what I do know is that I like where we are now, and am cautious of anything that has the potential to rock the boat too much. So…I truly hope that they keep kicking ass! Even if it is largely for purely selfish reasons.
What do you think? Do you think that there are added pressures if you are on top? Do you think those pressures pose risks?