Musing changes to guild recruitment restrictions

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Arman
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Musing changes to guild recruitment restrictions

Post by Arman » 01 Mar 2020 05:38

Hi everyone,

Myself and Cherek have been discussing a few correspondences we've had from mortals in relation to frustrations they've had with a couple of guilds that halt a players ability to participate in a guild due to inactive guild leadership structures.

The conversation moved a bit from the automation of the gnomish Inventors guild to a global relaxing of some guilds' recruitment and progression.. in particular allowing free (or free-ish) join to a number of guilds, specifically:
* the Calians,
* the Knights of Solamnia,
* the Army of Angmar,
* the Neidar Clan,
* the Pirates of the Bloodsea.

The intent is to allow such guilds to be easy to join, with minimal restrictions similar to what the Dragonarmies offer (limitations to access guild racks, guild lists, or certain rooms for example).

We understand that this takes an element of control from the player guild leaders, however considering the state of inactivity of some of these guilds we think the role of the guild leaders should now be more focused on making sure those who join stick to the standards of the guild rather than as a gatekeeper for joining.

Anyway, this is just some of our discussions so far. We'd appreciate players thoughts to add to our considerations.

Thanks!
A.K

Thalric
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Re: Musing changes to guild recruitment restrictions

Post by Thalric » 01 Mar 2020 10:22

I don't know anything about the pirates.
That being said, I don't know why they have a joining process at all, despite it being an RP thing.
From the ones I know, it seems as if the RP ends when people join.

Calians, Knights...
Yes, they seem very inactive and would probably end up in a lot better position if people were allowed to join without too much trouble.
A setup like DA sounds fair, since it opens for a certain amount of skills and utilities, but not for the whole package of EQ, guild lists and general trust. Which as always has to be earned.

AA and Neidars...
I am sure that the "relatively" active leaderships will be horrified to heard that you find that they're not active... and that you consider making their guilds free to join. (I actually thought AA was free to join).

Overall I think it is a good idea to make some options easier to achieve, to perhaps also get more people choose a faction. Have a cause to fight for. Some more RP than what mercs usually offer.

Drazson
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Re: Musing changes to guild recruitment restrictions

Post by Drazson » 01 Mar 2020 12:14

Interesting notion. However, I am considering the example of Calians who are free to join already and have restrictions until somebody promotes you let's say. The inactivity of the people who can give you access to the rest of the guild in that free-to-join case can make anyone despair that they'll be at low levels of training for the forseeable future and leave while having wasted their time and money.

Still, I believe such obstructions are yet very welcome, since they give enough time for the proven guildmembers to shape the seeker/squire/whatever into one of their own, in goals, mannerisms, fighting styles, et cetera.

So... Free to join just changes the problem and maybe makes it even more frustrating in some cases, while the inner obstructions are really needed, in my opinion, as well. We cannot force the leaders into activity too.

The only reasonable alternative (apart from kicking the leadership from their spots and generating a new one, which I thought had been tried and dismissed as an idea?) I see is making current members able to hold a yes/no vote for such things, assuming the leadership is absent according to the related meters. This is justified if you picture the situation, the proven members that hold no title still struggle to keep their numbers up, in hope the leadership returns. They will do what they can with the training of recruits too. In kind of abandoned guilds maybe give a 1 yes vote advantage to the sole seeker. After all, everybody is missing and they are pledging for the cause. It's possible that the leadership will return and find them not refined enough, but it was their responsibility to be there in the first place and they will have to resume it now.

Edit: To somewhat distil the last paragraph, make the leadership halt you with the training they give you, or not at all.

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Dhez
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Re: Musing changes to guild recruitment restrictions

Post by Dhez » 01 Mar 2020 13:35

I think it's a fantastic idea to move away from the 90s leadership format to a more open one which can only help the guilds thrive. The only reservation i'd have is the list of guilds being considered: is there any reason for guilds such as Priests of Takhisis, Shadow Union, and Morgul Mages, for example, to be excluded from these musings?

We've seen a very positive approach in a free-ish approach to guilds in sohm/WoHS. It has served as a model that allows players the experience of membership with some limitations that are not entirely exclusive.

The role of councils being interpreted more as servant-masters and guides to lore, principles, etc., can only improve in making the existing plethora of experiences in Genesis more accessible to our new and ever increasing playerbase. Restricting newcomers, and existing players, to a fraction of all available guilds creates an elitism that is counterproductive to the game's success as a whole.
You see a mousetrap. I see free cheese and a challenge.
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

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nils
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Re: Musing changes to guild recruitment restrictions

Post by nils » 01 Mar 2020 14:05

I like the fact that some guilds have a tint of exclusivity to them, while other's don't. The problem, as I see it, isn't so much the guilds' exclusivity, but lack of systems to enable the change of leadership. Said systems need obviously be customized to whichever guild in question, since not all guilds view the concept of staging a coup by killing the leader to take over (See Dragonarmies) as.. natural.

Simply opening up exclusive guilds in a 'free-to-join'-manner sounds to me like destruction rather than progress. I'm pretty sure even Dhez would find it pretty horrible to see all 'colour-robed hooded' individuals be switched out with 'shadowy veiled', and all the secrets of the Shadow Union spilled on the altar of short sightedness.

Personally I'd hate to see my beloved Army of Angmar turn into a free-to-join shitshow.
Lesser guilds deserve their suffering, you feel unjustly nerfed and want to be restored to your rightful glory... huh. I guess you're Genesis Hitler then. It feels so sweet to say this.. Fuck you, Hitler.
-Drazson, 21.07.2019

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Cherek
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Re: Musing changes to guild recruitment restrictions

Post by Cherek » 01 Mar 2020 16:03

Nils: Unless I am completely mistaken AA was free to join during it's most successful time in Genesis history? People still talk fondly of the "Angmar feel" in the guild from back then (despite it being free to join).

There's no reason active guild leaders cannot create a good environment, even for RP, in a free to join guild. I mean, guild leaders would still have the power to kick members who don't follow the standards.

I totally understand the possible problems with free to join guilds, and that guild feeling, community, RP, etc can take a hit. On the other hand, it doesn't have to become that way. It's still up the the leaders to decide the direction of their guild, and let new recruits know what is expected of them, and what will happen if they fail.

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nils
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Re: Musing changes to guild recruitment restrictions

Post by nils » 01 Mar 2020 16:14

Cherek wrote:
01 Mar 2020 16:03
Nils: Unless I am completely mistaken AA was free to join during it's most successful time in Genesis history? People still talk fondly of the "Angmar feel" in the guild from back then (despite it being free to join).

There's no reason active guild leaders cannot create a good environment, even for RP, in a free to join guild. I mean, guild leaders would still have the power to kick members who don't follow the standards.

I totally understand the possible problems with free to join guilds, and that guild feeling, community, RP, etc can take a hit. On the other hand, it doesn't have to become that way. It's still up the the leaders to decide the direction of their guild, and let new recruits know what is expected of them, and what will happen if they fail.

I joined the Army of Angmar for the first time right before the Angmar Wars broke out, and definitely had to apply back then so I think you're 'completely mistaken'.

It's not only roleplay and community that take a hit, racks, libraries etc can become victim of Turk-like characters too.
I vote a big fat no. The Army of Angmar has an active council and is one of the most active guilds in Genesis. Fixing what isn't broke is a bad idea.
Lesser guilds deserve their suffering, you feel unjustly nerfed and want to be restored to your rightful glory... huh. I guess you're Genesis Hitler then. It feels so sweet to say this.. Fuck you, Hitler.
-Drazson, 21.07.2019

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Dhez
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Re: Musing changes to guild recruitment restrictions

Post by Dhez » 01 Mar 2020 17:24

I think we have to strike a balance between preserving the good in each guild and allowing some sort of openness within its lore limitations:

Let's say we have certain deities, the Elementals, and the people of Calia know of these traditions. The Circle has their clergy, which is of course a very lofty position within any religion, requiring ordainment and such. Fantastic, but... Is there any logical reason why becoming a worshipper of a Deity is deemed inappropriate and locked by the clergy? Sure, we can make a difference between a recognized worshipper who was allowed by the clergy to undergo a formal baptism of sorts, but we could also make the case that worshipping these deities is open to all who seek them. We have the ability to interpret lore on the basis of being either elitist or open: it's our choice in the end.

I'm sure a similar case could be made for any guild.

At the moment, realistically, what we have isn't hardcore lore and RP in our beloved game. What we have is real people sitting behind keyboards holding real grudges and using their power to restrict aspects of the game to people they simply do not like. There are cases of justified lore to do this, but most of the times it is simply a misuse of power.

We have perfectly viable and beautiful guilds sealed from people by councils who just do not have the time, inclination, or desire to act as their roles demand of them. They will make up excuses for their behavior because they are in a position empowered to (re)define their lores according to their whims. There are others who are extremely dedicated to their guilds with a passion, and who invest every single waking moment in caring for them and providing applicants with an incredibly immersive experience. I'm certain complaints would come only from the former group, not the latter, since at the end of the day those who join without explicit invitations can still be removed. It is, however, far more difficult for a player to prove why a player was removed vs why a player wasn't invited in the first place.

Guilds still hold elite positions, and they are called councils. Those council members often misunderstand what their position represents, and focus more on the power gained than on the responsibility which now falls on their shoulders. Players who have no intention of putting in the work, or who misuse their positions of power to redefine things to fit their agenda, should not be encouraged or given eternal protection and safety to hold those guilds hostage. There should be valid, viable, and established methods of removing and replacing those leaders, but at the core of these issues lies the concept of favoritism and friendliness, not 'love for RP'. Guilds are simply much too dependent on human beings to function, and therefore prone to failure, drama, nepotism, and corruption. We will simply have to shift our focus from thinking 'such and such guild is an elite rp guild' to 'such and such person is an elite rper'. As far as I'm aware, the game _encourages_ RP, it doesn't force it.

Would the game suffer from such changes? Of course, but it is also suffering now. The admin should choose the path leading to the goal they're trying to reach, regardless of its difficulty. The game also suffered from the vamps, mystics, khiira, and other guilds' closure. It will simply move on, and a new generation will take the old one's spot.
You see a mousetrap. I see free cheese and a challenge.
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

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Cherek
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Re: Musing changes to guild recruitment restrictions

Post by Cherek » 01 Mar 2020 18:25

Nils: Guess I remember wrong, I really thought they were free to join at some point. Either way, I don’t think a more open joining process should be dismissed just because AA are fairly active right now. A lot of guilds struggle, you know that too, even if your guild is currently doing ok.

And nobody said it has to, or should be, free to join to full member with full rack access right away. The DA system seems to work fairly well, and I don’t see why something similar couldn’t work for other guilds.

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nils
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Re: Musing changes to guild recruitment restrictions

Post by nils » 01 Mar 2020 19:45

Cherek wrote:
01 Mar 2020 18:25
I don’t think a more open joining process should be dismissed just because AA are fairly active right now. A lot of guilds struggle, you know that too, even if your guild is currently doing ok.

And nobody said it has to, or should be, free to join to full member with full rack access right away. The DA system seems to work fairly well, and I don’t see why something similar couldn’t work for other guilds.
The problem isn't how easy or hard it is to join a guild. Some guilds should be hard to join and vice versa. The problem, as I've said before and you now touched, is how able others are to 'take over' an empy guild, or how existing, lower, members able to take over leadership where it is idle, not functioning or even to serve some agenda. There are individuals who have, for better or worse, held guilds hostage/speartipped guilds for the better part of a decade and I'm willing to go as far as to say that said individuals are the reason people don't care for the guilds they are in charge of.

And we're back to the 'hard work' of conjuring specific systems for every guild that fits the theme, lore, mission or whatever else is pertinent to the individual guilds. In the opposite end there's the 'quick fix' of simply, as you put it, 'a more open joining process' which I see no upsides to, except for the trolls, spies/'alts' and guild hoppers.

Perhaps you should start a brain storming-thread for each guild, see what ideas the community has for how roles are distributed rather than steamrolling with half-baked ideas and easy solutions.
Lesser guilds deserve their suffering, you feel unjustly nerfed and want to be restored to your rightful glory... huh. I guess you're Genesis Hitler then. It feels so sweet to say this.. Fuck you, Hitler.
-Drazson, 21.07.2019

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