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Merforga

Guild Roster Consolidation

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Note : Feedback will be open for 2 weeks until 27th June 2016

 

Hi all,

 

The commanders and myself recently undertook a half yearly review of the state of TTS as well as the objectives and goals we set out with at the start of the year. Suffice to say, the last 6 months has been challenging and there has been a lot going on, both from a market and meta game perspective. Put bluntly, the lack of content that we excel at (mass wide coordination ala Triple Trouble), is no longer a huge pull. In addition, the focus of the community off this sort of content has also made numbers plateau and stagnate for us. 

 

As a result, revisiting our objectives for the year, we really want to continue to build a thriving and welcoming community for all. This proposal will allow us to in part or completely contribute to the following objectives we have:

  1. Providing a positive and safe environment for community interaction
  2. Providing value added benefits to members of the community
  3. Communicating frequently and regularly to the members

 

Context

 

Currently we have a large number of guilds with not many active players / members. With the focus on community ever so important for us, we need to focus on quality over quantity. We want to retain people who are an active part of the community and retain people who care about the community and desire to make it a better place for all on a daily basis.

 

A few facts : 

- Last month we sent out ~290 invites. In January we sent out ~400

- Last month we averaged ~250 members per guild. In January that number was ~400. 

 

Proposal

 

 

So, with that said, we want to make it feel more like a guild and thriving community on an every day basis rather than a few people per guild being the vocal majority. As such, we are looking at condensing our membership for the purposes of activity, rep checks, etc.

 

The number of guilds will be reduced to 2 for NA and 1 for OCE, PAC, EU and Raids.

 

Naturally, there are a few concerns, most prominently, that a large number of resources have been sunk into all our guilds and to "abandon" them like so is quite a large pill to swallow. A few considerations (and by no means is this final):

  • While we are looking at reducing the number of ACTIVE guilds, existing guilds could still remain open for people who are truly vested in them for mining / guild decorations etc. That will mean that people be in multiple guilds if they so desire, however there will be action nor advertisements in the "inactive guilds"
  • Lowering the number of guilds we manage will make administration significantly easier for all Commanders involved. This will mean we will be able to keep tighter check on members and have more stringent activity checks to ensure active members are actually active and part of the community.
  • Higher activity will mean that finding and making new friends will be dead easy \o/

 

So, with the aim of building a stronger, more active community, what are your thoughts on this matter? Do you have alternative suggestions? Do you think it's a horrible idea? What else should be considered?

 

While we can run so many events, ultimately the success of this community lies with everyone, including you. We're relying on your input to help shape of the future of TTS. Remember:

 

CAPTAIN_PLANET.png

 

- Merf

 

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Lets take a holistic view of TTS - I'll start with the most common topics and give my opinion on them, because no matter how much you consolidate, you're still going to bleed people if your only plan is to stuff people closer together. Moreover, the idea that TTS is only for boss kills is still a large mainstay in the GW2 Community, and the public opinion overall is quite negative. Even today a thread popped up on Reddit discussing the inner workings of TTS - it wasn't positive.

 

So what can TTS do to solve that image issue? It's quite a difficult topic, right - once people have this perceived notion of what something is, it often takes a tide of positive feeling for them to change their ideas. However, from an outside view, it looks as if TTS is doing nothing to change that opinion. This idea presented is nearly two years late - the idea of a primarily social guild and the importance of building a community. Even then, it was passed off as too much work, and many insisted it should just happen naturally. This is a change that has to be fostered, and the commanders have to be willing to put work in to make it work. Running a guild is hard, everyone knows that - and as such, I don't think consolidating the guilds even further fixes anything.

 

The problems stem from this:

  • TTS as a whole is often remarked as a world-boss only guild. Very few if any see the potential outside of that.
  • TTS presence is often negative. TTS does nothing to change their image and just accepts the fact that public perception isn't great.
  • TTS runs very few, if any, events that impact or drive the community together. Things like Pink Day in LA and Toga Party were mainstays and showed how large and generous the TTS community was. We raised 30k Gold, far more than any other guild, the last time we participated in that event. It was an accomplishment that people could be proud of.
  • Many see TTS commanders as low-effort individuals. The harsh reality is that many believe that no one cares enough to keep the community alive and will not push for success.

Those are all harsh realities. Some may disagree with me, as is their right, but if they take that at face value and just accept that, even if hypothetically, it isn't pretty. The reasons above are largely why I don't show up as often as I used to - there's really nothing there for me anymore. I've gotten everything I want bar Chak Gerent, but even then - TTS isn't needed for that any longer.

 

Look at some of the other larger guilds. GW2Community has a calendar filled with events, daily runnings, etc. There's always something going on, and they foster that growth by pushing their forums and other features to their members, ensuring that everyone knows what's going on, and when. Their calendar isn't one-hundred percent filled with Tequatl and Triple Trouble. While yes, it is a large staple, a cursory look would show temple runs, dry-top, etc. We can also take a look at Evil Geniuses, another popular guild. Lotteries, raids, events, PvP teams, etc. The Nameless Ones - PVP Tournaments, Guild Missions, lotteries, training raids, PvP Teams, PvP Tournaments, Fractals, and more. These guilds foster this in their recruitment, and even push their members to do these things together in an environment.

 

TTS has a 512 slot team-speak that goes largely empty and unused (Anyone else remember the 5 triple troubles we did on the anniversary, when we had to use the backup teamspeak because there were so many people?). The website/forums receive far less traffic than they used to, despite being faster and more optimized than before. I offered to redo the front-page to make it smoother, and give it the same feel as the forums - in order to extend the experience across both platforms so that TTS could utilize the resources they have, but even looking at it now, the events section is rather dead.

 

So, overall, here's my slim answers to your bullet points:

  • No need to keep the guilds open if you're going to condense. It creates further overhead and impedes any progress TTS hopes to make by marking those guilds as inactive. If anything, if you want to condense, sell off some of the guilds that are unused. The influence + bank would probably go for 500g minimum. However, that's lucrative and may not be in the best interest.
  • Lowering the number of guilds you manage will make activity checks easier, sure - but activity checks have always been counter intuitive to growing a community. People want to rep when they like a guild. Forcing people to represent and holding them hostage (a bit dramatic) by having activity checks always seemed poor. You clearly aren't hurting for slots or you wouldn't need to condense. Perhaps leniency is a benefit here. Judging by some recent threads, there's still mistakes being made with kicks, and that's often more negative than anything.
  • Assuming that there will be higher activity by pushing people together would often seem like a given, but judging from my guild panel - most people largely de-rep TTS the second after they're made active. (That issue I mentioned earlier about TTS being a world boss only guild) So, I don't think it'll have the impact you want it to.

 

TTS doesn't need to condense their guilds - they need to ensure that each member feels wanted and welcomed, that each member is more than a number on a spreadsheet. Build a community, or accept the fact that TTS is seen as a world-boss only guild. Would condensing make the job easier? Sure. It isn't necessary, though, at all. Remember, the power is yours. :winkyface:

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Interesting views.   Perception is something that is hard to build.  I always say first impressions are hard to erase.    I think one of the reasons that TTS has that negative image in some players minds is because in order to get kills teamspeak was somewhat of a requirement - nowadays ArenaNet has nerfed just about everything to the point where it's not,  but we still use it to help teach people and build that one on one relationship.  As the CO of PAC,  I'm always welcoming people to join the teamspeak,  and people to join the map even if they don't log into teamspeak.   If someone PMs me and I happen to see it (we often get a lot of PMs for those wondering if you think we're ignoring you.  We're not) I let them into the map and show them how to.   However,  my objective and goal is to help people learn the game and build that community rather than just provide loot.   As I'd say  - you come for the kills, you stay for the community.

 

  The reason I have suggested condensing the guilds is so that there can be more reach towards the community.  Unless certain commanders are on at PAC, which has by far the most commander presence, we cannot notify guilds outside of the calendar that we are running events and show people how to attend those events.   It'd take members to look at the calendar to see any changes. I couldn't imagine the other timezones being able to do that that have significantly less of a presence.   Let's be blunt and honest - we have far fewer commanders than before.   There could be much speculation as to why,  but I won't get into that.   With fewer commanders,  it is a lot of work to reach out to 4 guilds per person and try to build that relationship.   Not only is it reaching out to the members,  it's also managing the guilds that takes a lot of effort to do.

 

 But it's up to the community to decide.

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I should preface this by saying I haven't been terribly active lately since RL takes precedence to any game. I also can't expect my word to carry much weight as I can't make any guarantees on activity until I have everything straightened out in RL. That being said, I am opposed to consolidating guilds. Erik seemed to have put it best above and I agree that the net result of any consolidation will be to bleed members. I have emptied extensive amounts of resources into improving the Guild Hall and if it were to be abandoned, I certainly wouldn't stick around. I'm sure this holds true for people in each guild, and as such even if my (NA) Teq Terror Squad were to remain while others were dissolved, my opinion of TTS as a whole would become greatly unfavorable. While I'm not the type to go make a reddit post about such rash, unfavorable changes to bash TTS, I'm certain there are many who would. If gaining a positive image for TTS is an objective that carries any weight, this would be extremely counter-intuitive. 


Now, it would be poor of me to criticize suggested solutions without suggesting alternatives. The unfortunate truth is that there is no fast or easy fix to this predicament. I have many years of experience leading guilds across various games and can guarantee achieving your objectives will take extremely calculated politics. My first move would be to start a poll, encouraging all members to take part, in order to assess what each individual wants from the guild in regards to activities. This means you can include times of running fractals or dungeons paths, sPvP, and WvW, as Erik has mentioned other successful guilds implement. Knowing what time these individuals would prefer these activities will allow you to manage a schedule more effectively. Additionally, if most members don't have an interest in a wide array of activities and are interested in very specific activities instead, you can transition each guild into a guild that specializes in that niche. You may counter this by saying our limited number of commanders make this a difficult feat, but perhaps we simply need a restructuring of the hierarchy. Commanding Officers for large scale battles like TTS, and to a lesser degree, Teq, are fine as they are. However, many things such as Fractals or dungeons or sPvP do not require a CO. I suggest introducing either lower commanding ranks for organizing smaller activities, or specific commanding ranks such as sPvP Liuetenant. If you choose to pursue it, WvW is large scale enough to justify a CO who specializes in WvW. 

The above suggestions should slowly begin to breathe life back into regular activity by members. In regards to rep requirements, that's up to you but I do find guilds that have rep requirements generally fail since HoT came out. There is little reason to have anyone repping aside from community presence to those who are not yet part of TTS. In regards to our image throughout the entire GW2 community, I believe once again Erik said it best by mentioning events like Pink Day or Toga Party. 

In short, we haven't changed with the times and our community is failing as a result. Condensing these numbers in ways that will only bleed members further while still not changing with the demands set forth by a community with a more robust selection of options than during the founding of TTS means we'll only expedite our own demise. 

I apologize for the somewhat unordered train of thought, but I'm quite busy and need to take care of some matters. I just wanted to say my piece. 

Edited by Gavros Bloodfist

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"The number of guilds will be reduced to 2 for NA and 1 for OCE, PAC, EU and Raids"

 

Okay. So to make sure to clear something up. I read this to mean that there will be three guilds total: 2 for NA and 1 for all the others to combine in to. As I have spoken with some other members, I am not sure if this is correct. Can this be fixed to be made more clear so as to not make people cry on a Sunday afternoon? Thank you. 

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19 minutes ago, Rei said:

"The number of guilds will be reduced to 2 for NA and 1 for OCE, PAC, EU and Raids"

 

Okay. So to make sure to clear something up. I read this to mean that there will be three guilds total: 2 for NA and 1 for all the others to combine in to. As I have spoken with some other members, I am not sure if this is correct. Can this be fixed to be made more clear so as to not make people cry on a Sunday afternoon? Thank you. 

 

The proposition is for there to be 1 for each. Meaning there would be 4 separate guilds: one for each timezone and one for Raiding.

 

Anyway, I have been against the idea of consolidating guilds myself. Mainly for the reason that members have sunken in a lot of personal resources into building those guild halls' upgrades and decorations. Simply put, the current situation with guilds is not the same as it was the last time there was a guild consolidation that reduced the number of open guilds from 12 to 7 - there weren't guild halls back then. And frankly, closing guilds at this point would be nothing less than a waste of aforementioned resources. Granted, there have been valid reasons listed for closing the guilds which have already been mentioned. But it's still not something I'm easy with.

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"The number of guilds will be reduced to 2 for NA and 1 for OCE, PAC, EU and Raids"

 

i propose OCE still stick with 2 guilds. 

 

As stated in our recent commander meeting and ill say it here, some of the guilds have the capacity of 300/500 (for oce in particular it's 300+ in both guilds), by condensing it to 1 guild we will be at maximum capacity +more, where will the extra 100+ members go? I feel by condensing our guilds we're backtracking a lot and it'll be a slap in the face to the guilds who've invested a ton already in time, effort and resources to upgrade their guild hall, this will not fix the problem of gaining more of a community.

lets see the gains and losses for doing such a thing:


Gains
- commanders able to advertise events in more guilds

- " Higher activity " -if we do manage to achieve this

less administration work

- easier to manage


Losses

- community backlash

- high chance of people leaving the community

- more negativity -which we don't need more of-

- huge initial loss in retention

- doesn't fix the burnout of commanders in other timezones

- risky

-guild hall resources gone (all them super clouds ;( )

- if we were to expand later there will still be an issue of one guild being more "active than the other"

 

comments

-people don't talk anyways due to them being shy or what-not

- community needs to be less about dank memes and trolling but actually socializing and chatting

-people atm see us as just a boss event group and only join to get notifications on when we do events

- even if you advertise within the guilds some people may not go on teamspeak

- we made the timezone exclusive guilds for a reason -to place members at appropriate times they play/ do events. Most of the time if you advertise within the guild you're not even going to get that many numbers if it's not your timezone

 

TL:DR : i think the losses and harms outweigh the gains and benefits rather condensing guilds we should make more effort to try and fill those empty slots not just the commanders but the community as well.

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I'll admit that I was originally for condensing the number of guilds, but reading all of your comments, including my fellow commanders, my opinion is changing. Which is exactly why this post is here for the community to talk to us, because whether people outside of TTS believe it or not, we are here for you guys. We just are trying different routes into improving. If this isn't one of them, then we will carry on.

 

More opinions on what we can do instead is always welcome. I LOVE that Gavros gave the opinion and then offered a look into what could be done.

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Further going on what Erik said, my biggest concern with TTS numbers has revolved around the negative connotation with the community. We can say "haters gonna hate" or "they're stuck with the mindset that we're evil" all we want, but not addressing those and letting it foster in others minds makes it worse. Consolidating the guilds is a reaction to dwindling numbers, not a solution to stop the numbers from dwindling. And making guild chat a little more active isn't a solution. I'm torn on the consolidating part, but even if we do so, it doesn't address the problem.

 

To change that connotation, you need to full assault that idea that it's wrong. "TTS isn't Pug friendly" is a major one. Organize and publicize an event that counters that (Multi Wurm event). Like Erik said, Pink Day, Toga, events that give back to the overall community or even IRL are great recruitment tools because it's fun and catches the attention of others. Something you can publicize. Doing the above also begins to address the concern of commanders not being in it to raise TTS up.

If the concern with all that becomes "that requires a lot of planning and overhead and management and people stepping up and..." then lets do it! If you came on the forums and said that we were going to do another multi Wurm Kill event like last year and the concern is there won't be enough commanders to help, I and I suspect others will assist however we can. Find ways to recruit and bring people in, and the community will assist alongside in every manner possible. That by extension fixes potential problems with coverage, issues with negative connotation, and the idea of just doing the same thing day in and day out (burn out).

 

Summarized thoughts: Fix the dwindling numbers issue over all else. Consolidate if need be, but I would be much more concerned about the numbers overall. That will only continue if left unchecked. Then we'll be looking at consolidating even further down the road if we don't address it.

Edited by MasterOfSwordsmen

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6 hours ago, MasterOfSwordsmen said:

I and I suspect others will assist however we can.

 

Can I quote you on this and hold you to your word? Forgive me if I'm a bit jaded now, but everyone who keeps saying " oh hey run more events" and "Lets just organise x y z" is all well and good , but we don't have the capacity to do it. I've heard this line so many times and it's always ended up with no follow through. So what make your statement different to the other 100 well meaning members who have also offered their help but have never followed through?

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12 minutes ago, Merforga said:

 

Can I quote you on this and hold you to your word? Forgive me if I'm a bit jaded now, but everyone who keeps saying " oh hey run more events" and "Lets just organise x y z" is all well and good , but we don't have the capacity to do it. I've heard this line so many times and it's always ended up with no follow through. So what make your statement different to the other 100 well meaning members who have also offered their help but have never followed through?

 

Bottom line, jaded or not, you asked for suggestions and feedback on the current plan. Reality says that condensing isn't the solution. If the plan is to condense in order to provide these things, then go for it. If the plan is to condense because you're bleeding members and there is no plan to stop it, then you may as well move down to one guild and then start from there and rebuild.

 

Nobody said it was easy, and if anyone thinks it is, they are sorely mistaken. Running a guild takes a lot of work. The simple reality is, you won't find people willing to run events and build a community if there is no community present. Many of the commanders we funneled through in my day saw it as a lost cause. If you want your numbers to go up, and you want them to stay consistent - I believe, and many others believe, that this is your best way forward.

 

Ultimately, TTS has constantly strained with the numbers. If you're too big, you're too big. Either you condense and cut the losses and say "sorry, this is how it is" (aka normal 1 guild way) - or you continue to be a bloated behemoth that represents World Boss killing and you just accept that fact your numbers will fluctuate until they release new world bosses that actually require TTS involvement. You want to play the game, and not have to do a ton of administration work, I get that and understand that - but by taking on TTS, you conceded your ability to do that without putting others before you. If you can't honestly say that you're willing to sit down and organize Pink Day, or put together a post asking for commanders/etc to see if they'd be available for a 5 map Triple Trouble, then I think the only way forward is for the condensing to happen and TTS to just ride the wave.

 

Lastly, this is just my opinion, perhaps others see it differently. However, I'm off to San Fran (ayy, going to the airport at 3 AM) - so I hope the discussion goes well.

 

 

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By no means am i disagreeing with what you have raised. I'm merely pointing out the fact that this part of the issue is members such as yourself stepping up. If they're not stepping up for simple small events, how can I in good conscious, rely on them for larger events? You've got to learn to walk before you can run. 

 

As I mentioned in the meeting, this is by no means a final decision, it's an option that was floated prior and even I am opposed to it, however it's something that we need to seriously consider as a last resort if we are to remain we are. And it's the responsibility of everyone, both commanders and members, to make that happen. 

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Speaking as someone that was in a previously consolidate guild, I completely agree with Erik. I don't believe that consolidating (again) would be beneficial to TTS. We went from 12 down to 7 and now we are considering going down to 4 but it has not stopped the loss of numbers. All we'd be doing is putting a bandage on a gaping wound. We don't actively recruit members like the other guilds do except when we run events (and that's only in TS). And even if we did I don't feel that we do what is needed to keep the new member's with us. Shoving more people into a guild isn't going to do that either. It just makes you feel like just a number. I get that feeling at work and I don't want to have that here. This is where I come to escape RL and have fun and laugh.

 

I do have a suggestion tho. Is it possible to design a rank that assists with the administrative aspect but not lead raids/events? I am not a talker but I would be willing to offer assistance on that part. Leading events is not my thing. 

 

 

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TTS guild chat isn't the place to be social, the TS is. Unfortunately it goes largely unused in between raid times. Why does the TS go unused? I have the same opinion as Ailarin. TTS is a boss killing guild, and people see it as such. Once thats drilled into their heads it's really hard,  if not if impossible to change their view of it. I think you should be happy that there's still big numbers applying to TTS on a monthly basis (250 nothing to sneeze at, ~ 1750 overall again, nothing to sneeze at) and stop trying to make more of less. 

 

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That's true. I spend most of my TS time in the AFK channel even when I'm not.

 

Also sometimes I see people talking the Guild chat and no one answers them (that annoys me). I always try to answer any questions or comments that I see.

Edited by Raven Rhapsody

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  The overall idea has nothing to do with the number of members,  but more so the number of commanders at specific timezones that are unable to reach certain TTS guilds because there are 8 of them.   At PAC we eventually had every commander be in different guilds so all guilds could be messaged, but if one person isn't available for the day,  there is a chance a guild doesn't get notified an event is being ran except for looking at the calendar.   As the one who entertained the idea,  it wasn't to prevent members from bleeding,  it was more so to help commanders reach towards the community and be able to focus resources to a smaller amount of guilds to make them level 64 rather than some being ignored if a previous manager happens to step down, as with Teq Terror.

 

  As far as running more events - I'd love to.  Feel free to apply to help run them.

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As the administrator for sending out guild invites and allocating members to guild, I will put my personal thoughts into this topic of condensing guilds. 

 

I personally am against the idea of condensing the guild just because the numbers of invites we get aren't as bad as it seems. Each guild has a good number of members, and maybe a change in how we do a purge can benefit us in the long term. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Raven Paradox said:

  The overall idea has nothing to do with the number of members,  but more so the number of commanders at specific timezones that are unable to reach certain TTS guilds because there are 8 of them.   At PAC we eventually had every commander be in different guilds so all guilds could be messaged, but if one person isn't available for the day,  there is a chance a guild doesn't get notified an event is being ran except for looking at the calendar.  

 

Quite honestly, I think most if not all of the "veteran members" know when event times are being run. They probably could care less about being whispered by a commander that they are doing a TTS specific event. That's why you see a huge influx of people around the 7:30-7:45 for NA Teq. For example even though I don't know the exact rotation of events, I do know that Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday is OCE is Teq/Triple Trouble. NA is usually started off with a Teq (except Thursdays which I think is just straight DS) followed by the flavor of the day. Finally PAC is generally KoTJ, Teq, TT, though I've heard you guys recently switched up your schedule. I don't really need a whisper, or a member messaging me. (most of the time we're already in channel)  

 

What I would suggest is less focus on whispering inactive guild members or guild in general and more of an emphasis on lfg. Whispering friends, guildies, and followers is fine, but lfg should be the main focus. People in channel only have so many friends so many followers. Commanders shouldn't be asking to use lfg as a last resort. It should be given equal if not more weight than F/F/G. 

 

Lastly, if every commander, and even the man in charge, is opposed to guild condensing, why are we even discussing the issue?

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Just a quick thought on the whole guild chat isn't active: we've created a pretty active guild chat in Twinkie. Like last night, multiple members were throwing around punny jokes for fun. Yes there is TS but I do think making guild chat active helps too. Teq Squad also has a pretty active guild chat. 

 

Some people weren't opposed. I wasn't at first. My mind changed reading all the comments and seeing everyone else's point of view.

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13 hours ago, Merforga said:

 

Can I quote you on this and hold you to your word? Forgive me if I'm a bit jaded now, but everyone who keeps saying " oh hey run more events" and "Lets just organise x y z" is all well and good , but we don't have the capacity to do it. I've heard this line so many times and it's always ended up with no follow through. So what make your statement different to the other 100 well meaning members who have also offered their help but have never followed through?

If it is scheduled for a day and time that does not interfere with my RL work and there is not an emergency going on, yes you can. If you want precise times at the moment, I can't be up late at night EST as there's work in the morning (aprox 5 or 6 am server time. specific days earlier than that). That's in flux at times though so I was hesitant to even post that last part.

 

I can understand being jaded about it, but you're also ignoring plenty of other times that the community has stepped up and helped. And if my reading in between the lines is right here, that jaded attitude about everyone maybe part of the problem as well. I see that as not trusting us to help, "so oh well let's not do it". Correct me if I'm wrong, please.

 

The whole thing is a team effort. I'm sure the commanders want TTS to do well. I know you want TTS to do well. And I'm sure any vet/new members also want to TTS to do well. Everyone can contribute in some capacity. Rather than say "I've heard it a hundred times" and belittle someone wanting to help as just another let down in the making, possibly encourage, provide the resources, and push them to follow through?

 

And just a note for my multi wurm example: it doesn't have to be the exact same scale wise. It could even be something as simple as calling a specific day, Recruit 1 friend (everyone try and bring someone new to the fight or TTS in general), Training day for the general community. If we do want to look at the same thing scale wise, we'll delve into that if we get that far in these discussions.

4 hours ago, Celtic said:

What I would suggest is less focus on whispering inactive guild members or guild in general and more of an emphasis on lfg. Whispering friends, guildies, and followers is fine, but lfg should be the main focus. People in channel only have so many friends so many followers. Commanders shouldn't be asking to use lfg as a last resort. It should be given equal if not more weight than F/F/G. 

This at least for guild wide whispers. LFG can also serve as a recruitment tool. Push that resource as hard as possible. Introduce new people to the fight and/or to TTS. I know it's used at points, but the emphasis is clearly on TTS guild roster. That's not inherently bad, but when most members do know the times and you're in need of new members, find ways to get the new members.

 

Back to consolidating topic:

If you all doubt that membership numbers will go up, and if you all doubt commander coverage to deal with admin tasks will improve (via more commanders, improved systems, whatever), further impeding on yall's ability to perform admin tasks, then I say consolidate.

If you think either numbers or commander coverage will improve in any capacity without consolidating, then I'd say don't do it. IMO this is where I'm leaning, but it's also dependent on what is done to improve TTS's current status on top of this decision.

Number of members is an important part of this discussion because it could also lead to an increased number of people interested in the commander role.

Edited by MasterOfSwordsmen

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@Celtic just because I oppose an idea, it doesn't necessarily mean it shouldn't be considered. Healthy debate is a good way to see different points of view. If I vetoed everything I thought was a bad idea, we wouldn't be here today. 

 

@MasterOfSwordsmen well the NA community meeting was promising, and no doubt the OCE one will be as well so I'm willing to give it a go again. 

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2 hours ago, MasterOfSwordsmen said:

IThis at least for guild wide whispers. LFG can also serve as a recruitment tool. Push that resource as hard as possible. Introduce new people to the fight and/or to TTS. I know it's used at points, but the emphasis is clearly on TTS guild roster. That's not inherently bad, but when most members do know the times and you're in need of new members, find ways to get the new members.

As an idea for LFG recruitment, just maybe once a month do an almost exclusive LFG run of an event. For example TT, take the 3 commanders and maybe a handful of community volunteers who are vets at reflect/condi and that's it, leave the rest up to LFG to get numbers. Pimp out teamspeak but be willing to also do map/squad/say chat for whoever shows up. Anyway, make those runs focus on LFG and be super pug friendly, let them know about tts and all that good stuff.

 

Doesn't have to be just TT either. Think it could work with any of the events in game. A few commanders and some community ambassadors who know the event who can help it succeed. Just rely on LFG for the majority of the numbers.

 

If you try it out and it goes well, maybe even expand it to a full LFG type night where 2 or 3 things are done. Let them know, hey we are doing this event next, and after that we'll do this. Everyone is free to join us, invite friends, blah blah. Even let them in on the council home instance farm. Just have someone on the account taking people between events. Show off our different guild halls if they want to see those (actually not sure how you can invite people to guild halls but if possible it would be neat). Basically a TTS open house style event night.

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8 hours ago, Celtic said:

 

Quite honestly, I think most if not all of the "veteran members" know when event times are being run. They probably could care less about being whispered by a commander that they are doing a TTS specific event. That's why you see a huge influx of people around the 7:30-7:45 for NA Teq. For example even though I don't know the exact rotation of events, I do know that Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday is OCE is Teq/Triple Trouble. NA is usually started off with a Teq (except Thursdays which I think is just straight DS) followed by the flavor of the day. Finally PAC is generally KoTJ, Teq, TT, though I've heard you guys recently switched up your schedule. I don't really need a whisper, or a member messaging me. (most of the time we're already in channel)  

 

What I would suggest is less focus on whispering inactive guild members or guild in general and more of an emphasis on lfg. Whispering friends, guildies, and followers is fine, but lfg should be the main focus. People in channel only have so many friends so many followers. Commanders shouldn't be asking to use lfg as a last resort. It should be given equal if not more weight than F/F/G. 

 

Lastly, if every commander, and even the man in charge, is opposed to guild condensing, why are we even discussing the issue?

 

  I'm not opposed to using LFG.   But I will say that just because you're a veteran member doesn't mean a vast majority are.   As the CO of PAC,  the newest timezone, we get about 40% of our numbers being TTS and the remaining 60% people that either haven't joined TTS yet or are rather new to TTS and it's their first time,  which is why it's critical to me to always put on a good first impression (since, first impressions are hard to erase).    However,  at PAC,  we simply don't have the room to do LFG.   Our KotJ map fills relatively fast,  and a lot of the times struggle to get everyone in unless it's a brand new map, in which some cases are still rather difficult.   Moving onto Tequatl,  those maps fill quickly as well because the general population understands the fight and the fight wasn't improved (but rather nerfed by being crit) with the launch of HoT,  meaning that people don't need to take 20 minutes to set up,  but rather a quick 5 minutes.   So, that map fills up quickly.

 

  Then it leads to Triple Trouble.   Where we spend 30+ minutes encouraging people to join the teamspeak to build up the numbers.   Eventually people found the loophole in which they don't have to be in the teamspeak until right before the event even starts,  because we managed to set that one up very quickly as well.   However,  since I never trust the numbers unless the number is actually there,  I always encourage people on bloodtide coast to join the teamspeak.  If they ask to join without teamspeak,  I still allow them.   But do keep in mind it's rather stressful trying to voice command and chat command at the same time efficiently unless a run goes rather smooth.   Unfortunately,  especially cobalt, the fight becomes unnecessarily difficult when people aren't in teamspeak, which is why we stress it so much.   However, we do often try to fill the map.   Once a map has been found,  I always test my squad in LFG to see if people can still join in.   A vast majority of the time it's full.

 

  So at PAC we could spend time trying to build relationships with members that often participate and those that are new to TS but took the time to log in,  or we could completely switch to chat commanding,  which is EVOS.    Not saying we can't do both,  but I'd rather spend more resources on people willing to learn the fight and build relations with the community rather than people just aiming to get loot.   Not saying they don't count either,  but I'm willing to debate that it's better to spend resources (aka time) trying to encourage people to join TTS (or at least our events) if they log into the teamspeak.

 

  Also, to clarify, we whisper people that aren't currently repping (active and inactive) to join us.    We separate the duty in which someone whispers a guild and then followers.  We encourage people in MAP chat to add us to their friends list as we always PM followers.   We also put the spam into guild chats so people that are repping can view it.  What *I* don't do is ever using the emotes/commands to invite people.   It's up to them to squadjoin.   It'd be way too much of a hassle trying to remember everyones names that ask for squad invites.   If they ask me to squad invite,  I respond "go ahead and type /squadjoin Raven Paradox",  mainly because when people are asking I'm in the middle of trying to set up the raid or in the middle of mass PMing people.

  

  I'm not opposed to LFG,  but it's not always a resource available because maps fill.

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On 6/12/2016 at 9:06 PM, MasterOfSwordsmen said:

I and I suspect others will assist however we can.

On 6/13/2016 at 3:23 AM, Merforga said:

 

Can I quote you on this and hold you to your word? Forgive me if I'm a bit jaded now, but everyone who keeps saying " oh hey run more events" and "Lets just organise x y z" is all well and good , but we don't have the capacity to do it. I've heard this line so many times and it's always ended up with no follow through. So what make your statement different to the other 100 well meaning members who have also offered their help but have never followed through?

 

 

19 hours ago, Raven Paradox said:

If they ask to join without teamspeak,  I still allow them.   But do keep in mind it's rather stressful trying to voice command and chat command at the same time efficiently unless a run goes rather smooth.   Unfortunately,  especially cobalt, the fight becomes unnecessarily difficult when people aren't in teamspeak, which is why we stress it so much.

...

So at PAC we could spend time trying to build relationships with members that often participate and those that are new to TS but took the time to log in,  or we could completely switch to chat commanding,  which is EVOS.

 

I'm putting these together, because I genuinely believe that there are people who would like to be more involved and lead more events, myself included.

 

1) The reality is that asking someone to chat command, much less TS command, is an incredibly intimidating proposition for a lot of people. I have the utmost respect for our commanders and regular community commanders who are so comfortable getting on TS and leading via voice. I don't believe that anyone is suggesting that we command via chat only. TS is an integral part of TTS. But honestly? From my perspective, that of a non-commander and a member of several TT/World boss guilds, TTS has a subtle but pretty powerful stigma against chat commanding. It's difficult enough to recruit people to command via chat, and I imagine that it's even harder to recruit voice commanders. It takes a lot of confidence to do either, and while I'm not saying we should be cheerleaders for everyone (it's exhausting), I believe that there are a lot of well meaning people who, plain and simple, are afraid of commanding but would be fantastic if given the right encouragement.

 

2) And as for others stepping up, I love community nights. I wish that I could attend more of them, because they give people the opportunity to show that they are willing to step up. Having regular (orange/red/blue) tag commanders is fantastic for the rest of the week, but it also means that the same people are commanding every night and are inching closer and closer to burnout. If there were more opportunities outside of the scheduled community nights to command- as in the understanding that people can volunteer at any time to lead- there is a possibility that you might see more people stepping up.

 

3) Having a planned calendar schedule is both good and bad. True- we do have scheduled nights off where people are free to organise as they please or where it is a community choice of what to do. But having very little free time, like in the case of almost constant scheduled activity from beginning of NA to end of PAC, takes away from the possibility that someone may organise an event. By no means am I criticising or saying to throw out the calendar. I love it. I love knowing when things are going to happen. But it also means that if you have prime play time slots already filled, planning another impromptu event is going to leave both sides lacking and possibly irritable.

 

On 6/13/2016 at 8:00 AM, Celtic said:

TTS guild chat isn't the place to be social, the TS is.

 

As Addy pointed out, Twinkie does have a much more active chat than others, and I believe that it significantly contributes to the feeling of community. You can't expect TS to be the only place to be social. Guild chats get chaotic, you have a million conversations going- believe me, I know. I'm in 4 guilds with active chats, and keeping them straight can be a pain. But as chaotic as gchat can be, there are people for whom TS is not the best or ideal way to bond with their fellow guildies. It gets just as loud and chaotic as guild chat, except that people can still participate in guild chat regardless of noise sensitivity, roommates, lack of mic, or what have you. We should be encouraging socialisation in both, because only emphasising one is alienating.

 

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