Hi folks, yes I know it's been a while.
Before I get into today's article, I want to brag again that another of my guides is up on the WoW official site, this time my favorite - the tree healing guide. Of course, it's company on the site include several guides that have not been updated since before BC came out... but what can ya do.
Today I want to mention some fun stuff that my guild likes to do that is NOT involving WoW. I know I talk a lot about my guides on here, but I want this blog to cover a wide range of things related to WoW - the nearest and dearest to my heart being guide writing, raiding, tree healing, and guild management.
With that in mind, today I'm going to talk about incorporating non-WoW-related activities into your guild.
As my long-term readers probably remember, I help to manage a very small, dedicated raiding guild called Fianna. The guild is very close - I consider these people to be some of my best friends. But most of us just can't handle raiding for more than two or three nights a week. Still, we want to hang out and spend time together over the internet.
Luckily, most of us also love tabletop RPGs, such as Dungeons and Dragons. So I decided to start up a weekly D&D group, using vent and an online map program called MapTool. This was immediately taken up by many others in the guild, and we now have weekly gaming sessions, trading off DMs each week so no one gets too sick of it and so they have time to prepare. So far it's been a big hit, and its a great way for us to "spend time together" outside of WoW, but without having to drive hundreds of miles across state and country lines.
Choosing an Activity
First, you need to find out a common interest that many of your guild mates share, and it needs to be something that can be done online with multiple people. Do they all like Diablo or Starcraft? Perhaps a different but much more casual MMO (for a while a bunch of my guild mates got into the silly MMO Maple Story)? Even simply online games such as online card games or the kind of thing offered from Yahoo or Aim could be fun. Think of things you might play at a party, such as scrabble or pictionary - there are online versions of these as well. Perhaps your guild is intellectually inclined - you could have a guild book club or debate. Maybe your guild includes card players, either of the normal variety or of specialty card games like magic.
Setting up Your Event
Whatever the case, you will most likely be able to find one or two things that a lot of people enjoy. Once you have that, it's simple. Find a time that won't conflict with your guild's other activities and set up your out of WoW activity. I use the in-game calendar for mine, or you can use your guild website if you have one. If you aren't an officer, make sure you clear your activity with the guild management before setting it up.
One note - be careful to be fair in your invitations, but also be cautious of the number of people you invite. If you have a large guild, inviting everyone may not be the best idea. You don't want to end up with a huge crowd of people and not enough spots in whatever activity you have planned.
Running Your Event
If your event requires preparation (such as a D&D game does), make sure this is done as much as possible ahead of time. There's nothing worse than sitting around waiting for something to start. Your guildies will become cranky and everything will just be a little less fun. During the event, try to be fair to everyone and give everyone a shot at the fun. How to do this varies greatly depending on what type of activity you are doing, so I won't go into details.
Planning for the Future
After the event, talk to your guildies. Find out if people enjoyed the event and ask for advice on how to improve it. If it sounds like people had fun, put another one on the calendar. Be honest with yourself - if people didn't seem to have fun, try something different next time!
Well that's all I have for today. Have fun with your guilds!