This is not the post they were expecting. Oh, my ex-guild all knew a post would be coming. I just don’t think this is the one they expected.

I’m always bigging up my bad, rebellious reputation, exaggerating how badly I get on with guild leaders. Always creating the impression I’ve been in hundreds of guilds and that I’ve been kicked out of most of them. It’s not true. I’ve been kicked out of four guilds in the last eight years. Or to put that another way, on average I get kicked out of a guild once every two years. Or I get kicked out of a guild approximately the length of time most people in my old guild have been playing the game.

Guilds don’t last forever and you will have the misfortune to be kicked or have leave a guild with people in it you like. It comes to us all. To be even more fair to myself I didn’t like one guild and I thought the Guild Leader was an arrogant prick and was happy to say “Fuck you,” to him in a raid. Unless you’re an idiot you know where you’re going with that kind of abuse. I said the same to For Pwny’s Guild Leader because it was obvious what was going to happen to that lovely guild. Just over a fortnight after I was kicked he “merged” the guild with the guild I was previously kicked out of above…I always think merge is such a euphemism. What they did was disband the guild and most people joined another with the officers. They destroyed one community and some of them were subsumed into another.

So really I’ve been kicked out of two guilds. Burning Phoenix’s GM Bovigor kept in touch after the kick and we remained on friendly terms. He and the guild’s main tank Typhoid posted on my next guild application thread recommending me to that guild: XSS. I remained friendly with the GM of XSS, he always said he owed me a large debt of gratitude for giving him the kick up the arse to sort his guild out. Just after I joined, a matter of days really, there was a messy guild split and the old leadership left, with most of the raiders, to form Mythos, not because of me thank you! There are many other examples, here are two: Vaarden of Incarnia Mortis, we got on fine; Maya, the temporary GM of For Pwny, I consider a good mate. As I’ve said often before it’s not authority I have an issue with it’s arseholes with no real authority trying to pretend they have some power.

So over half my time in Warcraft has been spent in four guilds. 75% of my time in game has been in spent in less than ten guilds. The rest of the time I flitted around trying out places to try to find the right combination of personalities and the right balance of raiding and having fun. Too many people in this game just pick a guild and put up with it. However, my livelihood doesn’t depend on my commitment and reliability to a guild. So, fuck it, if I don’t enjoy hanging out with you I will leave. I am fussy, why not? If I choose to spend months in your guild it’s your loss if I leave, even if you kicked me.

So I have been around, but not nearly as much as you may think. I do know what I’m looking for in a guild and I know what kind of place you will make a guild organising it in different ways, around different principles.

My last guild, the last guild I’ve been kicked out of, has left me feeling a little disappointed. Not by the kick. To be honest it was a relief when it came. Something had been brewing almost from the moment our guild meet in August was over. I just never found out what. I won’t miss all the atmosphere, all the watching people for behaviours the officers have decided are bad and not wanted, without ever telling the people involved what it is exactly that they’ve done or are doing wrong. I won’t miss the avoidance of confrontation at all cost. Good communication is worth it’s weight in gold.

I called someone out in guild chat for being homophobic and an officer tore me a new one. a) For being the one to have to do it again (it’s the officer’s job to deal with things like that “You are not the SAVIOUR OF THE GUILD!”) and b) having that row publicly in guild chat. Well, I won’t miss all the conversations behind closed doors, in private Mumble channels. Or the officers talking around things in front of members (like parents over children’s heads) in public channels. I won’t miss the GM telling me one thing and maybe, possibly, the exact opposite to someone else. He doesn’t lie, oh no, he just uses language very, very carefully and obfuscates.

If there are any gay members of that guild I wonder if they’ve formed the opinion that the guild leadership is homophobic? I know I wonder, I was ripped a new hole for calling a member on their homophobia and I’ve subsequently been kicked from the guild. The member I called on her homophobia is rude to co-tanks and other guildies in raids, has tried to pressurise guildies into buying her game time and realm transfers for real money and been a complete bitch, even to those who have actually parted with real money on her behalf, and she’s still a member of that guild. WTF?

The only other issue the cabal have indicated was problematic is my inability to let things go. Well, I make no apologies for not being able to ignore unfairness. I’m no longer a part of the guild because I highlighted the gulf that exists between what the GM and the officers said about fairness and equality and what they actually did. I called them on their apparent hypocrisy too often. After they’d made a decision which was demonstrably unfair I couldn’t just let it go, I had to keep questioning it. No one likes to have their integrity questioned. So, naturally I would have a whine on my blog about getting kicked. I can’t let anything go! There also won’t be any comments (even though they’ve all read this) because you wouldn’t want to give me the oxygen of attention now would you?

I work on the principle that whenever you leave any organisation: workplace; educational institution; club; guild; that the relationships you made may have been based solely on the organisation you had it common. Some people may have even tolerated you and given you the time of day only because you were part of the team. After you leave they may not wish to be bothered by you again. For that reason I think it’s appropriate that the first approach should come from the people who remain. They’ve lost nothing and it’s friendly to touch base and express regards and good luck to those who are moving on. You can then opt to stay in touch with them or not, but I would never bother people in guilds I’ve left behind.

I am disappointed then that only three people have stayed in touch from a guild I contributed so much to, both in terms of time and also financially. It’s a little bit disgusting and leaves me feeling used. I can honestly say that I do have three mates, I may have more who are nervous or reluctant for other reasons to contact me. Maybe this post will shake a few more loose. I won’t name any, I’m not disappointed with (many) individuals in the guild. I’m just disappointed generally about how I was treated and how easily I’ve been forgotten. I thought I had more than three mates in the guild though. Some might say “Well, there you are Steve you weren’t really very well liked in the guild.” To those people I would say only “I hope you never get kicked out of a guild, but how many of your guildies do you think really like you and how can you be sure?” I hope you have no reason to find out any time soon.

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