March 12, 2013

Why I despise multi-guilds

I touched on this in my rant about GW2, but I think this deserves more explanation and talk about my view why I think that multi-guild is a terrible thing and will only increase guild drama. I don’t think people have to go far in GW2 to see this has already begun to happen, but let’s get it out of the way and discuss it at length. I will try to keep each point to its own paragraph, but they will undoubtedly bleed into each other as I have a tendency to ramble. So, without further stalling let me get into the reasons why multi-guilds are terrible.

First and foremost, for the multi-guild system to work you need to represent a guild, but you can only represent one guild at a time. Right out of the gate you are already going to garner hurt feelings from people as a lot of the functions of one guild are locked out until you represent it, including the chat features, and any contribution you give only goes towards the guild that you are representing. This is just stupid in and of itself. Why even have multi-guild in the first place if all of the guild features are going to be locked out to you unless you represent them? Not to mention this also causes hurt feelings because people on both sides of the fence feel you should be pulling your weight for them. And you are left in the issue of who do you represent more.

Next on my list of why multi-guild is a bad idea is pretty simple one; it destroys community. If you can casually hop in and out of a guild, ignoring that people are going to get offended by this, then it doesn’t foster the idea that growing a community in a game is even something to strive for. Guilds are a large part of the backbone of a gaming community. But casually tossing the one last bastion of gaming community into the recycle bin like that completely negates all that. It just creates more undue tension and drama as people are stressing over who they should spend more time with.

And now my biggest gripe about multi-guild systems is this; it makes it way easier for spies to get into guilds of opposing factions to relay info to enemies. If people don’t think this is a big deal for PvP then you obviously have never played an MMO in PvP or any PvP based game before. This is one of the issues that GW2 has, outside of bots and cheaters, the number of people that relay information to opposing groups. And if you think that PvPers would not find that edge by getting alternate accounts, then you really have not played MMOs before. Just go over to the WoW forums and see how much of a stink has been raised by multi-boxers (players who play more than one account at once) because the /follow command was removed from PvP.

You want to know how to solve multi-guild issue. I’ve brought this up before in other forums, but it’s a fairly simple concept that, believe it or not, older MMOs from the early days actually used. It was called guild alliances. What makes this different from multi-guilding you might ask, well many things. First, an alliance is a separate chat channel and you can participate in an alliance chat, even if you are in another guild. Furthermore it bolsters community and healthy competition between the guilds in an alliance. Finally, it removes a lot of undue pressure on individual players from their guild that their guild might be offended they aren’t representing them enough. It leaves the control within the group of power, and it doesn’t cause break ups or harsh feelings. It solves all the issues and creates no extra drama that multi-guilds would undoubtedly create. Even if your guild is not hardcore PvP, a guild in the alliance most likely would be so wouldn’t be hard pressed to find it.

That’s my feelings on the whole multi-guild thing. It’s stupid, it’s creating undue pressure on individual players as well as the guilds in question, it removes any resemblance of community that MMOs even have left and it’s a breeding ground for battleground spies. I don’t know why developers have been opting for this when they have to see the negatives vastly outweigh the one positive multi-guilds have, and foregoing a system that has existed almost since the beginning of the modern MMO era, and that is Alliances.

Anyways, feel differently about it, leave a comment below.

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