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Reader Comments (23)

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 8:39AM vampero said

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Very important! I don't want to be in a guild that uses a guild for AOL chat line!

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 8:49AM serow081 said

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An active and friendly guild is a very important part of MMOs to me. I quit WOW because all my friends left...

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 8:51AM Malagarr said

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It's the most important part of any MMO, imho. I mean, the whole purpose behind MMOs is gaming with your friends. Now, let's be clear here, though. What's important is that the guild is active and has people on, playing and chatting. It doesn't matter (to me at least) whether or not the guild is going after Raid Mob X or just doing casual grouping. What matters is having people to hang out with...even if you're all playing solo and just chatting in guild.

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 9:02AM MMOaddict said

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Important enough to make a game I normally wouldn't like by myself much more enjoyable and worth logging into. I've noticed the few games where I don't have a good guild, I tend to not play for very long. A good example is EQ2. The game just shines with a nice active guild. Playing without one however...is like pulling teeth. A lot of game mechanics in EQ2 are very....mundane, just look at crafting as an example. Most mind numbing experience I have ever had. BUT, strike up a good conversation with the guild mates and that grueling crafting session goes by very fast.

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 9:15AM Jetflame3 said

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Without people to play with, what's the point of an MMO?

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 10:08AM CountBrass said

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It's everything, and it's the reason why I've quit every MMO I've ever played.

Without a Guild, one is subjected to the general population and random grouping. After the ten thousandth time you've read "Your Mom!" or "anal-(fill in your favorite word)" or homophobic and racist slurs, you've had enough.

The trouble is, I have found good guilds, with mature people, in which the chat is not essentially a microcosm of general chat, incredibly difficult to find. And even if you do, the steady influx of people in and out makes it almost impossible to maintain.

I played WoW since Vanilla, Guild Wars since launch, and a host of other MMOs, and it ultimately was for this reason that I quit them all. So now it's back to classic single player RPGs: Baldur's Gate 2, Witcher, etc.

--Count Brass

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 10:39AM KDolo said

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it's probably the same answer to the question, "how important is a guild to you?"

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 10:47AM Kaoss said

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why is there a picture of runescape?

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 10:55AM (Unverified) said

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I much prefer an active guild. Being in a guild that wanes or has spotty membership is a real downer. I don't expect a rigid structure nor any planned activities, but I want socializing to be going on at the very least. If I log in and try to make small talk and oftentimes I get no response, that's a good indicator that a guild is not as active as I'd like.

That said, I do enjoy going solo when I don't feel like socializing. Sometimes I've been subscribed to an MMO for such a short while that it's not worth joining a guild. Other times it's just me being anti-social and not wanting to feel obligated to do stuff with people.

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 11:12AM ReaperOfPoverty said

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While general gameplay is the most populer reason people begin palying an MMO, a good guild is the reason most people stick around.

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 11:45AM nimzy said

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Guilds give a MMO much-needed context. The game can only provide so much entertainment, it's the meta-commentary that really makes it great. It doesn't hurt that your guild are a bunch of people who've got your back. It's good to have someone you can count on out there.

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 12:33PM CountBrass said

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It's odd though, isn't it? If the only tolerable way of playing an MMO is to restrict one's interactions largely to a small group--guild--of people, then it's not really much different than playing a traditional RPG on multiplayer mode.

I have begun to wonder whether the intolerable character of most general chat and random grouping in most MMO's actually signals the failure of this particular model of gaming: that is, that the fact that the general culture is so toxic that people only enjoy playing the game under highly socially restrictive terms is an indication that MMOs presume a certain level of "civil society" that simply doesn't exist among the gaming population.

--Count Brass

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 1:09PM nimzy said

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@CountBrass It's really just a symptom of how multiplayer games work these days. When the playerbase is so massive you'll never see the person again after interacting with them, what incentive (other than, y'know, not being a dick) do you have to treat them well? I also suspect that without a sense of immersion, the feeling that the character I'm looking at is an actual person just like me, the normal rules of community don't really apply. It's definitely an important reason to have RP servers if I ever heard one.
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Posted: Sep 13th 2011 1:09PM Space Cobra said

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Well, for me, "active" is subjective. I certainly don't mind planned events and participating/helping in such, but as long as I log on and have some folks on the chat channel to chat with, I am cool. Mix that in with teaming/grouping up from time to time and the odd attending an online meeting.

So, while this seems like the "anti-vampero's reply" of above, it's not quite that. Just want to know there are peeps and warm bodies. AOL chat is fine by me, but doing things together from time to time is a plus.

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 1:12PM (Unverified) said

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I'm a mainly solo player so early on with MMOs (UO/EQ) I really didn't care much about having an active guild, just some nice people to chat with and occasionally do things with was all I needed.

Now, however, I realize that having an active/social guild has become very important to me. I know for a fact that if a guild I'm in is doing that death spiral thing -- where people aren't logging in, or are leaving in large numbers -- I tend to have less fun playing the game.

So, yes having an active guild is very important to me. It's not really a numbers thing more of an activity thing. Are guildmates willing to run dungeons together, help one another with group quests, just generally available for chat, advice, etc. That's what's important to me.

I've been in guilds where there were 400-600 members but despite the numbers cliques formed and the guild chatter was silent and getting things together was a chore. So it's not a numbers thing really it's more an active/friendly thing that's important.

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 1:40PM (Unverified) said

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An active guild is absolutely essential. I can enjoy a game on my own up to a certain point, but guild is where it is at for end game content.

When our guild became inactive in WoW, all the little annoyances in the game started to make it not fun. And the random community just didn't fill the gap, was a source of added annoyances. Once our formerly active guild became inactive, I quit the game.

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 2:01PM (Unverified) said

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yeah i like active guilds myseklf,least for the casual conversation.

hate the one who advertise we have x amount of memebers and are helpful.ya get in and barely anyones ever on and when there is you seem to be invisible when you need help with something.

wanted that i could of stayed solo

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 5:07PM Seffrid said

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I used to be very active in guilds in EQ and other games of that time, but haven't missed them since. I no longer want the drama ingame or on the guild forums, and also have no interest in vent or fixed timetables for participation in guild events etc.

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 6:38PM shirtntie said

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You do not need guilds to have a "social life" in a MMO. It is true that having friends(no matter if they are RL or newly made online friends) in an MMO makes the experience better and keeps you playing even though there are things you do not like about the game. But you do not need a guild to have friends online.
All the friends i have on my games are in different guilds than myself. We play together and chat. They more than anything else keep me playing, not guilds.

For myself, active guilds are about getting through content (raids, dungeons). You need a united group of players to complete those kinds of tasks. That is necessary, being able to organize and together as a team, experience content.

Guilds do have a social aspect of course, some guilds are only about being social. But to me guilds do not determine my social activity in an MMO.

Future MMOs should look into social networking like Blade&Soul. Its not about guilds, its about making it easy to meet people and make friends in the game.

Posted: Sep 13th 2011 8:06PM CountBrass said

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@shirtntie

Yes, but given the character of general chat in most games, are these people you'd *want* to make friends with in-game?

I maintain that MMO's have a major "culture" problem, and that the heavy emphasis on guilds is partly an attempt to rectify that. This is why, earlier, I wondered aloud if the importance of guilds is itself a sign of the failure of the basic social model on which MMO's are based.

(I should add that I find this topic fascinating.)

--Count Brass
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