As readers know, I recently stepped down as GM of War Within A Breath in order to start a new guild on the same server.
I thought I did everything right. I had someone solid to pass the GM title to, I refrained from pillaging the guild bank, I announced in Vent that I was leaving and gave my reasons why and I left a similar message on the guild forums.
Apparently, I can’t do shit right.
Sorry. History Lesson.
To recap just a little about what led up my deciding to leave, a former officer informed me that the more casual elements of WWAB were upset over a variety of things, most of them told in confidence (because the best way to resolve a problem is to not take it to leadership but rather to let it fester). The one thing that did come to my attention as being viewed as an issue, was the core. Which, as I have said before, had long since been abolished.
I said then that I should have quit back in November, when I was seriously considering walking away from all the bullshit that was going on.
A few days later, without giving any reasons or even trying to resolve any of her mysterious issues, this former officer quit. Her husband followed, of course.
I was left in the position of having about half of the people in the guild wanting to raid and raid seriously, with the other half being solidly entrenched in the idea that WWAB was a casual guild but apparently up in arms about something, and possibly thinking that they should be able to raid without putting in any of their own effort. I won’t lie. I lost sleep thinking about this, wondering who the malcontents were and debating on whether or not I should try to call them out on it so that we could at least establish a dialogue and try to move ahead with everyone on the same page.
With that in mind, I scheduled a guild meeting. I had intended to talk about raiding moving forward, reiterate that the core was a thing of the past and that in order to raid, all anyone had to do was get themselves raid ready and then sign up.
But I was still wrestling with the questions. WWAB had started out as a casual guild and there was this history in place that would be difficult to overcome in the minds of the long term members. As I realized a month before, I had changed. And was it really fair of me to try to force that change in goals on the guild? I didn’t think so, but what were my options?
- I could run the guild as a hard-core raiding guild, alienating the casuals or perhaps just kicking them out
- I could create a sub-group (core) which nobody wanted or liked and which had already failed once
- I could give up on your own goals of raiding and have a “casual” guild. Let the harder-core raiders move on when they get tired of babysitting the scrubs
- Or I could leave
And one morning, I woke up resolved. I poked at that resolve all day long and for the next three days after that. It didn’t falter. I was going to leave the only guild I’d ever known. I was going to let WWAB be a casual guild, since the dichotomy between having the people who didn’t actually give a rat’s ass about progression wanting to raid and the people who did care about progression not wanting to be held back by having to carry people who weren’t even putting in a minimum effort was the source of a lot of tension and drama.
So instead of having a guild meeting about the future of raiding in WWAB, I announced instead that I was leaving to start a serious raiding guild. I outlined that Cristus would be the GM and he would be working with whoever remained to determine what the direction of WWAB would be. I informed them that all the things At and I handled with our own money (vent, forums) would now be their responsibility if they wanted to have both or either. I expressed that I was willing to take anyone who shared the same goals but that I wanted people to think about it and make their own decisions because I was not going to try to poach. I wanted WWAB to succeed as whatever it wanted to be. I hoped we could still be friends and would love to still be able to ask them to raid with us if we needed people.
It was a difficult conversation, but I thought people understood. I was wrong.
Then I posted my farewell message on the forums and unlike anyone else who had ever, in the whole history of the guild, left for whatever reason, I did not receive many wishes of good luck and hoping to see me around. Which is okay, but what I did get was not:
I honestly feel pretty shitty about the circumstances by which you decided to pull up stakes. Mostly on the fact that if you hadn’t noticed, there isn’t a whole lot of us left. So if you felt the need to make a new guild, my question is why? If you want a raiding core, or wanted to make a separation, why not just define it that way? I always thought the question of the progression raiding core was more one of setting boundaries than it was one of needing an entirely new guild. So in the end result, those of us left in your wake are left feeling like we just weren’t good enough to be included.
I’m know that this is supposed to be a game, and there are those who espouse the idea that drama in games is needless since this is supposed to be fun. And on the grounds that we all pay our monthly to do what we like, I can’t blame you. But we have all spend days and in some cases literally years(!) doing this together. In light of that, I have to say this could have been handled better and I’m disappointed.
I’ve been trying to find a way to say just that exact same thing.. I’m really rather (for lack of a better term at this hour of the morning) pissed off by how everything was handled and feel exactly like you put it.. Not good enough.
For the short version, this is basically the story so far:
- Alas sucks because of the core and omg how dare she try to raid seriously in a casual guild?
- Alas leaves and says, “I want to raid seriously. I’mma do that over here instead. Wish you all the best and hope we can still be friends even though we have different goals.”
- Alas sucks because omg how dare she go start a new guild when she could have just had a core?
I replied to the post in as diplomatic a fashion as I could muster, but what I wanted to say was more along the lines of: “This sort of logic fail is the sort of thing that has made me crazy. Thanks for years of being completely self-centered assholes who have done nothing but whine and piss and bitch about everything without ever once lifting a finger to help the guild with anything. So you know, your constant blaming me for everything you don’t like and your nailing me to the wall no matter what I do is why I left. Nothing is ever good enough for you people and I frankly hope that you, in your infinite wisdom, try leading a guild some time and I hope you have people around to make it every bit of a fucking miserable experience for you as it has been for me.”
But wait, there’s more!
Over here in this neck of the woods, Elfi wrote about how my leaving made her feel. Now, Elfi and I have talked about things here and there and I am not linking so that everyone can go over there and tell Elfi she had no right to feel the way she did. She said it was knee-jerk reaction and if she had waited a few hours, she wouldn’t have even felt the same way. But because she’s not a coward, she’s letting it stand and I respect it.
The thing that got to me was this anonymously-posted comment:
It’s good to read you are feeling the same way as I am, kinda. I read into it more apparently. I took it as a “Yeah, we’re leaving… and by the way you aren’t good enough to be asked to come along but as a consolation prize we might ask you to come along if we have a spot open so we don’t have to PUG it.” But, I do have a tendency to read more into it than what’s there. It’s true, I’m pissed that there was so much needless gquitting if the GM had apparent plans to leave and start something new anyway. On the other side though I’m thankful WWAB didn’t get “Bend to my will or be banished!”I haven’t decided if I’m going to stay in WWAB or not. I want to raid, and there are plenty of decent guilds that don’t have a Friday/Saturday night raid schedule.
Emphasis mine because do you see the idiotic and offensive assumption this fine, anonymous commenter made? That I am, in fact, the sort of person who would sit around and plot how to drive people out of the guild before leaving myself? And this commenter can believe that of me even though I didn’t stick around to try to force WWAB to change?
Bitterness, I has it
In closing, I find myself feeling extremely bitter towards the people who I know made some of these comments. After being used by them as a target for years, I don’t know why I expected anything different from them when I left. But I did. Perhaps not well wishes, but even apathy would have been better than these ignorant and self-centered people judging even my exit as being “not good enough” and “wrong”.
The sad thing is, these people are never going to change. Whoever ends up being their GM or their boss or anyone else with authority over them will undergo this same treatment. They are so used to blaming someone else for anything they don’t like, that they will never, ever stand up and take personal responsibility for their unhappiness. They will sit there and passively blame anyone in the vicinity when it is they themselves that did not ever have the balls to address their own problems or the willingness to stand up and say that they would put in whatever effort it takes to make their environment one they are happy with and want to be a part of.
I keep telling myself that I need to let go of WWAB entirely. And I really do think it’s past time for that to happen. Excuse me while I go gquit on the alt I left over there.