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Drama Mamas: The case of the toxic guild

Drama Mamas Lisa Poisso and Robin Torres are experienced gamers and real-life mamas -- and just as we don't want our precious babies to be the ones kicking and wailing on the floor of the checkout lane next to the candy, neither do we want you to become known as That Guy on your realm.

If you're not having fun, leave. But sometimes it's just not that simple.
Hello Drama Mamas,

I'm writing in today with a raiding guild conundrum: to stay, or to bow out? Here's the story. I recently transferred to a new realm and joined a raiding guild after a few months' hiatus (big move). I was and still am, undergeared relative to the rest of the raid. I also do not have my legendary cloak yet, but am working on the runestones (8/12 now) as far as RNG will allow each week. The end result is, that even though logs have proven me a competitve player in the past when abreast of the gear curve, I am lacking in that department currently. For the record, I almost never die in fire or to mechanics. It's entirely a dps issue.
The second problem I face, is the guild culture. I think this is something you can't honestly get the feel of until one actually spends time raiding with the guild. This 25m guild rarely does things together outside of raids, and when they do chat, it's about topics that I cannot identify with (lolsex, lolbeer, lolsports). When I try and chime in, there is total silence, and I don't feel very accepted. This could be related to the fact that the guild look down on me for my performance despite having passed my trial (their roster is a tad sparse). When mistakes are made, there is copious swearing and blaming and shaming and yelling, and the guild leader is nonresponsive to questions and openly (and unecessarily, I feel) disparaging. I feel disappointed. Community is something I value highly, and I mentioned so in my app.

Why, you cry, why not just leave? Well, I am on an odd schedule currently, and I can't make the raid times of those guilds that are recruiting my class. The ones whose raids I can make are fewer and not recruiting my class. I have checked. Thoroughly. Secondly, I am aware that I don't look very palatable to other guilds at present. I will look a great deal better with a little luck in trinket and weapon drops, and with my legendary cape.

The question then becomes: given all of the above, should I stick it out until I get some better gear to be able to switch guilds, or leave and save myself a headache and continue doing flex and LFR for trinkets/weapons/runestones - and reapply to another guild when I finish my cloak? I don't want to fall too behind in progression while stepping out (13/14N currently), but am aware of the toxic raid environment poisoning my enjoyment of the game. If I leave also, I am not sure how the leadership will take it when I tell them that (thank you for the opportunity to trial, but I feel like the guild and I are not a good fit), and may badmouth me when I apply to another guild. I would appreciate any insights or advice you may have to offer!

Of Two Minds
Drama Mama RobinDrama Mama Robin: Of Two Minds, that really is a conundrum. You can't stay where you are, but your research shows you that you don't have a new home to attempt to go to. Would you be willing to transfer servers? I'm sure there is someone on a server somewhere that raids on your schedule and is recruiting your class. I think you need to expand your research to other realms and find good fits for your schedule and class.

In the meantime, leave your guild. I think your "thank you for the opportunity to trial, but I feel the guild and I are not a good fit" is an excellent way to put things. They would have to be completely unreasonable to badmouth you over that reason for leaving. If they are unreasonable and they do badmouth you, it's just another reason to switch servers.

While you're researching other guilds (and keeping an eye on local ones to see if their class needs change), I think your idea of doing LFR and PuG Flexes to continue gearing up is an excellent one. You may be able to find future guildies in PuGs. Someone from a guild with your schedule might like you well enough to invite you even though they are not needing your class. Then you can just ask to be on stand by and continue improving your skills and gear on alt runs while still running LFR and Flex.

Regardless of whether you find a home right away or not, I believe that staying in the toxic atmosphere of your current guild is a danger to not only your leisure time, but also your mental health. I know I'm repeating myself, but I cannot stress enough how strongly I feel that you should leave.

Good luck and let us know what happens.

Drama Mama LisaDrama Mama Lisa: World of Warcraft's premise is the eternal climb to increase your personal power and progress in strength. However, it's not much of a game if the process itself is un-fun. Where you are right now is un-fun. Un-fun-ness is like a big puddle of bad in a raid encounter -- get out of the un-fun so you keep DPSing.

You may need to change realms to find a guild that's specifically recruiting, but as Robin says, I think it's more likely you'll find a compatible guild through social avenues. Keep pugging, and keep chatting up your fellow players.

Even though you sound like you've got the principles and mechanics of transfers and applications down pat, I'd still recommend a fast sweep through our recommendations on finding a good guild fit, particularly our guide to choosing the right type of guild.

And finally, I want to repeat the advice I gave to last week's letter-writer, who also found herself in a guild that wasn't a good fit:

Once you've narrowed down some suitable candidates, peer into their rules and procedures. Talk to people on the server, both in the guild and out of the guild. Yeah, it might feel kinda creepy and suspicious, so keep your inquiries frank, friendly, matter of fact, and utterly transparent. Your goal is to find out what makes a group tick underneath the framework of raiding or whatever events and activities hold it together.

Finally, don't settle. There are too many guilds and players in World of Warcraft for anyone to feel they need to settle for a weak fit. Keep at it until you find a group you're truly comfortable in for the long haul. You deserve it!


Dodge the drama and become that player everyone wants in their group with a little help and insight from the Drama Mamas. Play nice ... and when in doubt, ask the Drama Mamas at robin@wowinsider.com. Read Robin's section of this post on how to get your letter answered and please remember that we cannot answer privately.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Drama Mamas

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