One particular item on their list stands out to me right now, though; and that’s what I want to focus on: Do Your Research.
I have seen applications that were well-written and honest, but completely unraveled with a second glance, all because the person who applied didn’t do their research first.
Here are 5 things you should know about a guild before you apply:
*Note: I’m going to offer suggestions of places to find information. Whispering guild members or officers will NOT be a suggestion. Why? Because if the info’s out there, sending us a tell to ask, especially when we’re IN THE MIDDLE OF FREAKING WARSONG, is lazy. Whispering someone from the guild to which your apping should only happen if they have asked you to contact them or if you’ve already checked every other available source.
1. When do they raid? I don’t always understand why people apply when their availability doesn’t match with our raids. Quite a few applicants have put something like “Wednesday – Friday, 7p.m. to 10p.m.” in their availability window. We raid Sunday through Wednesday, 8 to 12, so that immediately tells us two things: 1) this person can only raid with us one day a week, and only for two hours, and 2) this person didn’t check to find out when we raid.
Places to find this information: Realm forum raiding lists, Guild website information.
2. What level of content are they on? And are you ready to jump into it? If the guild is in Heroic Icecrown and you’ve never finished normal 10-man, the learning curve is going to be extraordinarily large. Getting you acquainted with the fights in the instance, particularly on heroic mode, is going to be a hassle for a group that can blitz most of the bosses easily. Also, while gear is not necessarily an indicator of how you perform, it will affect how well you do. If we’re all in 277 epics and you’re in 232’s, your competitiveness will be limited regardless of how pro you are at your class.
As a side note, please pay attention to gems and enchants on your gear. Ungemmed, unenchanted 251/264 gear makes me want to cry. The amount of effort you put into making your gear passable is directly related to how seriously you will be considered. We can overlook non-optimized (because we can help you with that), but not trying at all? Gimme a break.
3. Are they recruiting? And are they recruiting your class or role? This isn’t a dealbreaker, but it’s a good step to take to make sure you’re not wasting your time. We have apps all the time that get a “Thanks but we’re full on tanks/healers/melee/casters at this time” response, and that can be frustrating if you’ve waited a whole weekend to find out if you’re going to be accepted.
Often guilds will include a phrase like “Outstanding applications will be considered,” meaning that even if we’re not currently recruiting your class, we might be willing to find a spot for you. Please note, though, that by “Outstanding,” we mean “geared and experienced enough to jump into the raid tonight without much coaching, competent and knowledgeable of the minutia of your class, and mature and personable enough to fit comfortably into our guild community.”
4. What reasons are given for rejected applications? Some of the best clues and tips for getting into a guild is to scroll through other applications. Which ones were accepted? Which ones rejected? What were the reasons given? If there isn’t a clearly defined reason, how is the rejected app different from the accepted one? By noting why other applicants were turned down, you might be able to avoid the pitfalls that could get you rejected as well. Or you might see something on an accepted application that you can use in your own.
Places to find this information: Guild forums.
5. Is the guild a good fit? If you want to be a causal raider, then why apply to a hardcore guild? If you’re a parent who sometimes has to go AFK for kid emergencies (*cough* ME *cough*) or have to take a night off for a kid’s swim meet, is this a guild with other parents who will understand? Or are you a 19-year-old looking for a hardcore, stay-up-til-the-boss-is-dead weekend guild?
Look at the “more about me” sections of applications (there usually is one somewhere) to find out what kind of raiders are getting in. Our guild rarely recruits someone who is not an adult, as we are comprised mostly of 20 to 40-somethings with jobs, school, and/or family responsibilities. We also don’t censor our chat, and we respect that parents probably don’t want their kids reading some of the things we talk or joke about.
If the guild has a public forum other than recruitment, read through some of the posts, or watch for guild members in PuGs or Trade Chat. What kind of jokes do they tell? Are they silly or sarcastic? Brutal or soft? Are they highly critical of other players or do they accept everyone? Answering these questions can help you determine if you’re going to be comfortable in the guild to which you’re applying and if they’re going to be comfortable with you.
Places to find this information: Guild forums, Realm forums, In-game.
In the words of CCT officers: Good luck in your search.
If you liked this post, you may also like the other “Five” categories found here!