If my World of Warcraft guild was so foolish as to put me in charge of a recruitment program, I have a few ideas on recruitment guidelines, updated for the current generation of MMOGs.
Back in the EverQuest day, these guidelines wouldn’t be so … out there. Competition was tight: for mobs, for loots, for new guildies, for guild invites, for all that was new and shiny. In today’s kinder and gentler online world of fruity elves and jolly dwarves, that just ain’t so anymore. (Yes, I realize that I simultaneously bitch about endgame design and laud its cutthroat pragmatism. I like to think of that dichotomy as The Many Moods of Foton.)
Foton’s (evil and heartless) Guild Recruitment Guidelines:
1. Broadband. Most guilds, including mine, currently have this as an actual requirement. I’m including this anyways because it’s that important. A disco or lagging member does us ZERO good on Blackwing Lair Attempt #s 2 – 29. (Frankly, by Attempt #30, no one gives a fuck and neither do I.)
2. Residence outside disaster-prone areas. Sorry Gulf Coast, I learned my lesson. (Probably the wrong lesson, but a lesson nonetheless.) I’d like to include California in this too, the impending Big One and all, but there’s so many avid Cali gamers, I need their numbers. In the interim. Until the Big One hits. Fortunately for us, we didn’t have any guild members in the New Orleans/Mississippi areas, however, we do have several members in Houston. Thankfully, they all suck so we didn’t miss them during the evacuation.
3. A voice audition. TeamSpeak and Ventrilo are mainstream online gaming tools now and almost universally de rigor. I want to see not only that a guild recruit has our chosen voice proggie properly installed and working, but also that his/her/its voice isn’t like fingernails on a chalkboard. Mic set to Push to Talk, not too loud, not too quiet, drunk talking ok in small doses, those with screaming babies and/or ragging Significant Others in the background need not apply. High talkers (male), low talkers (either gender) and fems on steroids … you’re on shaky ground.
4. Money can’t buy love, but it can buy a guild membership. Unless we’re talking about one of those new fangled games where there’s no subscription fees, (and we’re NOT, btw), the prospect will need some financial stability to pay the monthlies. I’m not a fan of prepaid game cards (easy to forget the renewal) — BIG fan of credit cards (no memory necessary). To be blunt, it’s not just about the monthlies: it’s electricity, it’s rent or the mortgage payment, computer upgrades if needed, the expansion packs, the T-1 line, et al. If we’re talking about someone that’s one week away from out-on-the-street bankruptcy, save me some time and move on to one of those “family guilds”. They have a sympathetic ear. I do not.
5. No life outside the game. Boy, this type is getting rare, but they are gold if you can find them. Gold! Most guilds need at least a few of these to pick up the slack for the rest of us whose real lives intrude on precious gaming time. I’ll go so far as to say that there is an inverse relationship between a prospect’s real life involvement and his value to the guild. Spouses, life partners (w/e), children, pets, nosey neighbors, a mother … all bad, unless they game too, in which case they are subject to the same recruiting guidelines.
Evil? Yes. Heartless? Yes. Politically Incorrect? Undoubtedly.
That whole “accepting people for who they are” crap is out in Real Life. Learn the difference.
In a nutsack, that is why I’m not allowed to recruit for the guild. And why I’m subject to a gag order for guild public communications. And why internet anonymity is a very good thing for a person like me.
Because I’m a visionary.