Seri sez: The Ethical /gquit

November 6, 2008

crossroadsAt some point in every raider’s career, they find themselves at a crossroads. Leaving a guild isn’t always easy, but can be necessary as you (and your guild) change and grow over time.

If you’re like me, you’ve probably formed a pretty strong attachment to your guild for whatever reason. Maybe I wasn’t hugged enough as a child, I don’t know, but I’m a social creature (when it comes to online gaming, anyway) and my guild is something of a virtual home for me. It’s hard for me to imagine wanting to leave, but you know… nothing lasts forever and some day that day will probably come. I expect that it will be a difficult, emotional, decision and that Jov will probably get exasperated with me and tell me to stop being emo. It’s what friends do. (Or what she does, anyway.)

For others, changing guilds is sort of like changing socks; when the pair you’ve got starts to stink, you’ve got a whole drawer full of socks to choose from and think nothing of tossing the old ones in the hamper (or on the floor). Although acute manifestations of this ‘dirty sock syndrome’ can lead to the dreaded ‘guild hopper syndrome’ there’s nothing wrong with being of the mindset that you pay your $15/month to play how/where you want.

crew-socksSometimes I envy the folks who don’t seem to agonize over a /gquit, but more often I just end up having to clean up after them when they bail on raid night with an armload of plundered booty from the guild bank.

Yes, this is a game and (presumably) we all play it for recreation/fun. No one wants you to stick around in a situation that makes you unhappy, but for the love of Jaina you don’t have to be a jerk about it.

Angry Raid Leader covered many of the key points I wanted to make in a semi-recent article. I love ARL’s rants, they always seem to hit the nail on the head and as a former raid leader and current class leader I can definitely sympathize. My list is slightly different from ARL’s, but if you’ve read his article you’ll see similarities.

In the interest of promoting and perpetuating clean breaks throughout the WoW community, pursuant to a more harmonious raiding environment for everyone:

  • Don’t /gquit without talking to your GM first. No one likes to be blind-sided, least of all a busy GM. Give them some notice, at least 24 hours prior to the next raid you were expected to attend.
  • Don’t be a loot whore. If you’ve decided to leave the guild, don’t spend your last raid(s) making grabby hands at all the shiny stuff.
  • Don’t lie to your GM about why you’re leaving. They’re not as dumb as you think they are. Chances are they’ll find out later anyway and they’d much rather hear it from you.
  • Don’t encourage other people to go with you. Sure, sometimes you are close friends with someone and where you go they go, but don’t use your old guild as a recruitment pool for your new one.
  • Just say no to drama. Although it may be tempting to post a scathing exposé to the guild/realm forums, nothing good will come of it. I promise.
  • Don’t raid the guild bank. You may think you’re entitled to a little something for the road. You’re not.


Although the degree of finesse you exercise in extracting yourself may seem less important if you plan to transfer servers, regardless of where your new guild is located making poor choices about how to handle the situation can come back to bite you in the ass later. After all, recruitment officers do research.



  1. Wonderful advice!

  2. Your timing is positively spooky! You see yesterday I notified the officers of my guild that I will be leaving when the expansion comes out. It was gut wrenching, but I made it through it.

    My boyfriend is coming back to WoW after over 2 months away. He was burned out, but most of that burn out was caused by being in guilds that really did not fit what he wanted. This time instead of searching for a new guild he has chosen to start his own and I am going to join his guild.

    Saying I was leaving was very hard as I really do care about a lot of members in my current guild. However I was going to leave and I wanted to leave on good terms if possible. Even had people been mad at least I would have known I did the best I could.

    Now no more mind reading! 😀

  3. @ Faradhim – Thank you!

    @ Ayslin – I hope the new guild works out for you and your Significant Other. Running a guild is hard work, and I sincerely hope that it doesn’t lead him from one kind of burnout to another. Sydera at WoM has a (long, endless) series of posts about starting a guild; I haven’t read them all but she seems to have put a lot of thought into it and I believe her guild has been quite successful. Another good place to look for guild leadership-centric stuff is ChickGM.

    Leaving a guild can be hard, but as long as you’re staying on the same server you can at least keep in touch with your old guildies even after you go. 🙂

  4. Leaving a guild that you have invested time in for months ain’t easy. If you want to stay friends with the guild(or at least some of them) your leaving then that’s another reason to leave in good standing.

    Also helps if your trying to apply to another guild and your old guildies back you up =P.

  5. I have read every one of Sydera’s Starting a guild posts. In fact I have linker everyone on the officer forums of my current guild. excellent info! I also have read some at Chick GM.

    And ty for your well wishes. 🙂

  6. Amen! I would like to make this post required reading for my guild!

  7. One of the hardest things I ever had to do either in game or out of game was leave the guild that my boyfriend and I co-founded and nursed into a 200-man strong RP/raiding guild. For a long time, things were great, I was happy and loved my guild. But everything just sort of went downhill as time went on, my friends started to leave the guild for various reasons… then the boyfriend relinquished guild leadership to me, and then I relinquished it to someone else, and then the boyfriend /gquit and then with a heavy sigh I followed suit a few days later. I sent a letter to the new guild leader giving her my reasons and simply said something like “Well guys, it’s time for me to explore new horizons <3” in chat and then left.

    The next few days? They were tough. It was a tough cookie to chew emotionally. Of course I got over it though, and am much happier now, in a smaller, more personal guild that is largely made up of the more tight-knit remnants of that first guild. That first guild has since disbanded. The moral of the story is: Don’t put off /gquitting if it is the best thing to do for you, things will work out! Oh, and follow this post, it has lots of great advice! ;P

  8. As my guild’s recruitment officer, I found this read to be scripture that everyone should take to heart.

    Nice work!

  9. Similar to “Don’t /gquit without talking to your GM first” is my guild’s problem: Don’t /gquit without at least mentioning it to someone. *sigh* We haven’t had many gquits, but there have been one or two where someone says “Hey, where’s _____” and that person (+ alts) isn’t in the guild tab anymore.

    My guild is a little weird, though. It’s mostly friends and family, but we’re also a raid guild (the raid leads are hardcore, as they should be, and keep a tight ship). The people who leave (all … 5? … of them) are the ones who don’t personally invest in the guild, the ones who feel uncomfortable with the level of personal commitment we put in. So when someone leaves, it’s like breaking up with a girl. Awkward and personal.

  10. […] Related post: The Ethical /gquit […]

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