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Something lizardbones said in the "Group Content Doesn't Work for Most People" thread really stuck with me. I'll paste it here:
"I am of the opinion, that we are in a post Guild era. Too many people have joined multiple groups on Facebook, or followed many people on Twitter or Tumblr, etc. The idea of joining one group, and only one group probably seems like an alien idea to a lot of gamers. Guilds as a game construct also seem to be limited to MMORPGs. For instance, a person playing an FPS or MOBA could join multiple guilds, and play each of those games as members of multiple guilds. They could play an MMORPG as a member of multiple out of game guilds too. But in game, it's one Guild, and one Guild only.
Maybe there needs to be something in addition to Guilds. Something that brings people together on a social level, but with looser ties than a Guild. Something that is the equivalent of a Facebook group, but in game. Players choose one Guild, but many groups, with all the social tools available to Facebook, Twitter or Tumblr users. I know, I know, this sounds like the apocalypse, but the industry has to move with the players. It's not going to move any other way."
This is something I think we ought to discuss, because it seems clear to me that guilds, clans--whatever you want to call them--aren't as central to the games today. I mean, you have a game like League of Legends who grew to such extreme numbers without any formal guild system even attached. They are working to attach one now, but one wonders if it is even necessary.
Moreover, today's guild seems to be organized outside of the game, either on a webpage or on a voice server, and they don't seem to even play on the same game together when they log on. It is not uncommon to have two people in WoW, four people on LoL, five people on WildStar and a couple doing their own thing on Minecraft. You look at something like EVE, and you get these 1,000 person alliances where half or more of the members don't even log on unless there's a fleet action.
Don't get me wrong, people still join guilds, but it seems to me that the games are just as playable without them. Some may say this is a bad thing, some may say it is a good thing. Whatever you think of it, however, we ought to discuss it.
So I have a few questions:
1) Do we game in a "post-Guild" era today?
2) If we are, what do guilds need to do to "sell themselves" to players?
3) If we aren't, what is the guild doing to maintain its relevance today?
4) What did the guild do, what is the guild doing now, and what will the guild likely develop into in the future?
Feel free to answer those, or discuss whatever else you want.
"Its sad when people use religion to feel superior, its even worse to see people using a video game to do it."
"...when it comes to pimping EVE I have little restraints."
--Hellmar, CEO of CCP.
"It's like they took a gun, put it to their nugget sack and pulled the trigger over and over again, each time telling us how great it was that they were shooting themselves in the balls."
--Exar_Kun on SWG's NGE