Legion has been out for just over a week now and raids are just under two weeks away, but have you found a raiding guild yet? For many, this moment in time is the chance for players, especially those with little experience, to prove themselves on the small stage before the real challenge begins, so let’s talk about recruitment in the raiding scene and meeting your in-game goals.
The first thing to do is to identify what type of guild you want. Use several criteria, such as: previous progression, server population, raiding schedule, their need for your class/role, and guild stability. Sometimes the guild you want to go to involves moving off of your realm. While many guilds treat guild hoppers as treasonous swine, it is important to note that this act is necessary for one to reach the highest echelons of the raid scene. It is extremely rare to get into a hardcore guild without prior raiding experience. Much like with a job, the manager (Guild Master) is often looking at his team’s weak spots and experience is most always a prerequisite.
To gain this experience often involves steadily moving into better and better guilds through trials by fire the duration of this climb to the top varies on the player. One trend I’ve noticed among players is their deep inner conflict between raiding with friends, many who got them into the game to begin with, and raiding with competitive players to push for server/world rankings. Unfortunately, melding the two together is not always possible. While it depends greatly on the person, I can say from personal experience that you can make friends anywhere and a true friend will understand if you’re interested in moving to bigger/better things. If a “friend” cannot get over you making a guild change then they’re being selfish, they already control their own lives and now they want to control yours. Beware!
Once you identify a guild you are interested in, it’s time to apply! Be descriptive, informed on any specs you may be playing, and keep it to the point. Many officers will lose interest reading more than just a paragraph or two of the “About Me” section. Get to the point and present yourself as if you’re applying for a job.
If you’re low on experience or gear then set your short term sites on less progressed guilds that need your spec; applying to Midwinter when you’ve never raided before will not give you the results you want. Stay grounded and realistic. It takes time to climb the ladder but you can climb it faster based on skill, opportunity and some luck. If they call you for an interview it generally means that the trial spot is then yours to lose, keep calm and remember that a guild would only spend time interviewing someone they think could make it.
WoW Guild Interviews are generally a formality, and in my experiences are much more of a “meet and greet” between you and the officers so that you can feel out the guild. Some guilds will either ask WAY too many questions, or few at all. If you are underage, there will likely be additional questions because of the extra concerns regarding raiding with someone who is not in complete control of their free time.
Be prepared with your own questions about the guild environment, things they may do outside of raid, and if they ever raid past their regularly scheduled hours. Many of what I call “mid-range hardcore” guilds (3-4 day guilds in the Top 200ish Regional brackets) are guilty of regularly raiding past scheduled hours, so be sure to ask so that you know what to expect. If the guild has any streamers or YouTubers be sure to check them out in advance so that you know how things go. Often guilds will have a “good cop/bad cop” rapport in the officers or they’ll have a single dictator, do your homework before you join and remember that the interview/trial process is a two way street.
Now if you’ve gotten your chance to trial for a guild, it is time to get hungry. Make it your goal to be exceptional. If you are a hunter, push yourself to be the best hunter in guild. Then the best ranged and then the best DPS period. Find an exceptional hunter to emulate, track their logs, gear, and look if they have any YouTube videos or Twitch streams. While you definitely want to make friends in your new guild, I’ve found the best way to endear yourself to others is to prove you belong there and earn their respect. Small-talk or being nice is all well and good, but if you bring it to the first raid night everyone will notice and friendships will develop far quicker.
Stay positive, be clear in your priorities, and never give up. Maybe you'll even end up as chipper as a Shaman in a volcano!