Friday, March 23, 2007
An anonymous reader posted a comment late on my Is the Burning Crusade reshuffling guilds? article. To rescue that comment from obscurity, I'm quoting it here, because I think it is very interesting.
Our guild started out saying no pressure to level - lets take time and explore and enjoy the new content. (There are quite a few couples in the guild with small children, so we are limited on time sometimes to play.) Soon I began to feel the pressure to level level level, and despite all our resolve not to, we sprinted to level 70, about 2 weeks behind the "inner circle". Before we even reached 70, the pressure to attune became really strong. We both play key classes for Karazhan, so the pressure was heavy for both of us to get attuned, and quickly. We finally made it through the attunement process, and we are regularly trying to help our friends that we actually enjoy playing with, get attuned also by running the different instances and dungeons needed in between the raiding schedule.A certain amount of peer pressure has always been part of World of Warcraft. You raid when everybody else is raiding, or you don't raid at all. But do you think that the Burning Crusade has made matters worse? I remember that on some raid days every single level 60 online from my guild was in Molten Core. But now raids seem to have become a lot more selective, with often just one group going to Karazhan, and everybody else online doing other things. We aren't raiding all together any more.
We've been reluctantly pulled into what I refer to as the "inner circle" and although we are among the lucky who've been included on all the karazhan runs so far, our friends are beginning to think (and realize) the guild is focusing on this one team. We are worried that we will get blocked in with this inner core of people that we don't enjoy playing with; but also worried that if we say no, we won't get to raid at all. Now that the "inner circle" is attuned - they are only helping the classes get attuned that they need to fill out "balance" their "A" team, although I've been told we are going to have two equally balanced raid teams for Karazhan.
It's really irritating not to have any choices about whether to go on a raid or not or which team i want to be on. But we are afraid if we turn down a raid, or don't sign up, we might not be invited on any raids. Our guild is on the medium to small size, so it would be hard (not impossible though) to form our own team, but I am honestly here to play and have fun with my friends, and this situation is making me want to form my own raid team within the guild, so we can have a reasonable schedule and actually enjoy going there, instead of having to group with mean people who only want us there because we are "this" class or "that" class. We've also got the problem that the "inner circle" likes to split my spouse and I up and I worry they would put us on two different raiding teams.
BC has made people crazy. Definitely made it hard to just log in and have fun. So I guess we are stuck in between the people who are way aggressive and way out front and the slower group who hasn't even hit 70 yet. Yup, stuck right slam in the middle...I wouldn't really worry too much about it, 'cause we like to do the instances and dungeons, but eventually we'll want the challenge of raiding the larger areas, so we are stuck going with the flow until some more of our friends get attuned. We are working earnestly to help them, but in the long run - unless we disband, we won't have any control about who gets to play with who if they form teams instead of continuing our guild's policy of having open signups for all raids, and running numerous raids. ~sigh~ oh well...at least it felt good to vent...
On the other hand the Burning Crusade introduced a much larger choice of 5-man instances to go to after reaching the level cap. Many of them are already good for level 70 groups, and those that are a bit too low can be played in heroic mode to make them challenging for level 70 groups. Thus playing together in 5-man groups definitely has increased from the level 60 endgame to the current endgame. Which has the nice effect of having less peer pressure, as organizing a 5-man run is a lot more flexible than organizing a raid. You don't feel you have to log on at a certain time to be able to play at all. And you don't regret "missing" a group, because there are so many of them around.
How has the endgame changed for you? How do you spend the majority of your time? How much do you feel pressured to play by your guild mates?