Vok, who plays on the same realm as us, ranted about Priests in his Healing Q&A. Obviously he’s played with some terrible Priests this expansion, none of which, it seems, can remember to click Fortitude. Or perhaps none that can afford candles.
But Vok doesn’t realise how close he came to raiding with me.
When Lathere and I needed a new guild at the start of Wrath we came as a linked pair. A buy one, get one free type deal (I think Lath was the one they were buying and I was the freebie). We joined a raiding guild called Defiance – a step up for us, or so we thought. Some of our other friends followed us and we were happy to have them with us.
But I wasn’t happy in Defiance from day 1. I argued endlessly for reform. Their DKP rules were grossly unfair to newcomers and favoured officers and long term players (even ones who I’d never even raided with). And the prospect of winning cloth armor seemed hopeless. There were no rules to protect us from leather/mail/plate wearers and the raid was lousy with Warlocks, Mages and Priests. I won more gear from PuGs than I did from guild runs.
The night we first stepped foot in Ulduar I gquit. I’ll admit, it was a spur of the moment type thing. Yes, it was that bad. And Ulduar wasn’t as forgiving as Naxxramas. Lathere and 2 raiding friends of ours quit too.
We had no other guilds lined up. We were un-guilded. And we were a four package deal: me, Lathere, a Resto Shaman and a DK. And the guild that we just left? Hated my guts.
Remember how I said quitting was spur of the moment decision? Well the next day Lathere called me and gave me the older sister sensible speech which boils down to “how could you be so reckless? look at what you’ve done!”. While I had been ranting about unfair DKP rules and awarding loot to players who consistently disconnect for entire encounters, Lathere had been planning a more sensible exit strategy.
We both try to keep in touch with the nice people that we’ve raided with over years no matter where they go and it’s fair to say that there’s someone in most of the serious 25 man raiding guilds on Barthilas that we have some history with. Perhaps you could even go far enough to say “we have friends in high places”. Nah, that is going too far.
But Lath and I got talking and we soon realised there was really only a couple of guilds that we wanted to be part of.
One of those guilds had stolen two of my favourite people from me: a Hunter by the name of Stardown (back in the days of BC) and a Shaman by the name of Rumbrb (at the very start of Wrath). Stardown was Obsolete’s Hunter class lead and an officer. And he definitely deserved the position. If I wanted to wind down after a raid I would just ask Stardown a Huntery question, or use the words “Attack Power” in his presence, and the steady stream of numbers would put me right to sleep.
The other guild had coughed up an (alt) Protection Warrior who tanked with us in the Burning Crusade. He had managed to steal my best friend away from me in-game. For at least six months all I ever heard was “Caco and I are doing x instance” and “sorry Caco just invited me to do something”. Tanks and their healers. What can you do? Anyway I figured if Maria liked him, he must be alright. Caco returned his alt to his raiding guild, Vitare, in Wrath and became an officer.
And do you know, while I’m writing this, I just realised they have the exact same first name in real life? I’ll give you a hint… it starts with the letter m.
There were actually two other potential guilds that we considered less seriously:
One guild had pinched another one of my favourite people, a Mage. I still remember the first conversation I had with Majesty on-flight to Tempest Keep. And it still makes me smile. Unfortunately the guild he joined in Wrath, Exiztence, also contained the most annoying player (and a Priest! for shame!) on the server. Plus they seemed like tight-asses. So they were out.
The last guild we considered, Annexation, had grabbed up quite a few (at least five, I think) of our players at the start of Wrath just at the time when we were desperately trying to get consistent numbers for 25 man raids. I’ve always thought of them as poaching our players. So they were out, too.
So I logged in the day after we /gquit and Caco, from Vitare, whispered me within minutes:
“So I heard you left Defiance…”
Stardown, from Obsolete, didn’t log in until an hour later. He offered us a place in their next guild raid and a standing invitation to join Obsolete. But by then I was already somewhat committed to our (at the time not yet written) Vitare application. I politely refused his offer to raid with them because I didn’t want to be saved in case Vitare wanted to bring me to a trial raid that same week.
So we joined Vitare. And we’re still there.
Annexxation disbanded. All our friends/guild members who left us for Annexation are now in another guild altogether. They’re doing quite well.
Exiztence very nearly disbanded. Or disbanded and reformed. It’s hard to tell. A chunk of their raiding team left to start their own, extremely successful, guild. Several of their members, including my friend Maj, changed factions and joined a successful Horde guild on Barthilas. I’m still a bit sad that I can’t chat with him anymore.
Obsolete have had a rocky time of it, too. They had their GM step down. At one point it looked as though they were going to stop running 25 mans altogether. And it seemed as though they were forever recruiting a decent Priest (which explains Vok’s hatred towards Priests). My friend Stardown stopped playing WoW while we were all still in our Trial period with Vitare. My friend Rumbrb no longer raids 25 mans and raids 10 mans instead with some of the original Obsolete raiders.
And Vitare? Doing better than I had ever hoped.
But I can’t help but think how different it could have turned out. If Caco hadn’t been online when I logged in that day and it had been Stardown who asked first? We would have joined Obsolete, I’m sure of it.
Do you have your own World of Warcraft sliding doors moment? One decision, or a twist of fate that lead you in a completely new direction?