Seri sez: Exit, Stage Left! (No, not mine.)

November 5, 2009

Don't be a pussy.Burnout. It happens to everyone. Sometimes it sneaks up on you and whacks you with a cartoon-sized mallet. More often, the slide from contentment to disinterest is rather gradual. There are ways to combat it: Scaling back your play time and/or guild/team responsibilities, gearing up and swapping to another character, taking a night (or a few nights) off… but what do you do when you realize that it’s time to call it quits? If your answer is ‘disappear without a word to anyone’ I have a few choice words for you.

I get burnout, I really do. I’m not immune to it myself, either, and I try to take nights off when I feel like I need them. When my raiders come to me and say ‘Seri.. I need a break’ my first words are usually ‘Ok, how long do you need?’ no matter how much it may hurt the raid team to be down a(nother) member for a couple of days/weeks. I like to think I’m a pretty reasonable person, and I like happy well-adjusted raiders. Unfortunately, sometimes people ask for a week off and simply don’t return… or, worse, just stop signing up for raids without a word to me (or anyone) about why. I’ve seen this behavior from extremely dependable/reliable raiders that I’ve known for ages, and I just don’t understand what is so difficult about contacting someone to tell them you’re not coming back.

I don’t know about your guild, but I think it’s fair to say that most guilds have some means of communicating outside the game. Whether that means forums, Twitter or a good old fashioned phone tree… unless you’re shipwrecked on a deserted island, in jail, or hospitalized, you should be able to get in touch with someone. Even if they’re not an officer, they can relay a message for you. Account expired and can’t/won’t renew? Leave a forum message, send an e-mail, tweet, or poke someone on the IM client of your choice. Computer dead? Use a friend’s. Have no friends? Call someone. Don’t have anyone’s phone number? Use an internet cafe. Broke? Find a local hotspot and start asking folks politely if you can borrow their laptop to send a quick message. (Offer to let them watch so they can see you’re not doing anything malicious.) Heck, these days most people are carrying around a cell phone that can connect to the internet. There are ways of getting a message through!

There are so many ways to get a message to your guild that there are really only two reasons I can think of for not doing it: Apathy and cowardice. If you are so apathetic about the game and your guild that you can log off and never look back without giving it a second thought… wow, you really do need to quit the game. If you’re afraid of telling your GM for some reason, take a few minutes to think about why. Are you worried they’ll be mad? That they’ll beg you to stay? Do you just feel so guilty for ‘abandoning’ the guild that you just can’t face it? Get over it. The world (of warcraft) won’t end because you are leaving. If your guild is strong, they’ll make it without you. If they’re not, well, then there are greater problems that you staying would probably not fix.

Now, I’m sure someone out there is going to say ‘What’s the big deal? It’s just a game… I don’t owe anyone an explanation.’ To that, I say: Good riddance, you self-centered narcissistic cockweasel. This sort of attitude is fine for a casual player… the sort of person that joins a guild for socialization, shared resources & occasional heroics. When it comes to raid guilds… you’re occupying a spot on the raid roster. There are people depending on your ass being in your chair on raid nights, and the time that your guild officers waste waiting & wondering if you’re coming back is time they could have spent recruiting for someone to fill your slot.

I know that there are occasions when it is just impossible to get a message out, but it seems in my experience that in most cases people could have easily gotten a message to the officers but they just—for whatever reason—didn’t. So, in closing, I’ll simply implore you all to not follow their example. If you decide to quit the game, tell someone. Don’t leave us twisting in the wind.

Related post: The Ethical /gquit

P.S. <Axiom> is recruiting DPS! Visit our recruitment page for more info and instructions for applying.


  1. There are other explanations for why people disappear, of course. They could have died, and their relatives either don’t know or care about their online gaming, or they can’t access the account to be able to tell anyone.

    There’s another reason. There are people that can be so addicted and their only way to cut their addiction off is to go completely cold turkey: any contact with anyone from the game can be for some, like visiting their old drinking buddies. It might look like cowardice on the outside, but for some it’s the only way.

  2. “I just don’t understand what is so difficult about contacting someone to tell them you’re not coming back.”

    Not knowing you’re not coming back would seem to be an obvious one. I could easily see someone being convinced it was a temporary break not worth mentioning (or more specifically, not worth causing the officers to replace you), for even a few weeks, enough time to hit total apathy.

  3. We had a guildie use one of his very limted phone calls from *JAIL* to contact a friend and instruct him that he’d be away from the game for a little while.

    Any effort less than that gets a heaping helping of my derision.

    • Ack! I mean “instruct him [friend] to tell us [guild] that he [guildie] would be away from the game for a while.”

      I needs moar coffees …

  4. I once had a fellow officer completely disappear from the game, for about 6 weeks, without a word. And then, one day, he was back. Yeah, turns out he’d been working on an industrial electrical panel, and someone had flipped the switch to “live.” He was lucky to be alive.

    We gave him a full pass on his absence.

    And yeah, he’s the exception to the rule. I think you’ve hit the nail on the head with your comment about “feeling guilty,” I suspect that’s the reason most people drop out of contact.

  5. Ayslin= biggest baby in the world

    That being said I have cried everytime I have left a guild even a guild that I could not stand being in one moment longer. It is what I do…I feel guilty. I feel guilty about stuff that is completely not my fault. I am mental. However….I have never left without a word. I always tell the powers that be that I am leaving and why. I do however try to remove the bulk of my toon when very few people are on as I do not like to create a stir.

    Last guild I left I contacted the officers well ahead of time and told them I’d be leaving to join a new guild my boyfriend was creating as soon as Wrath came out. I then posted a good bye message in the forums. Then when the day came I left when few were on as I did not need more good byes to make me cry more than I already had.

  6. I think it is guilt – though god only knows the guilt ate me up when I stepped out of my guild. And I’ve been in one of the toughest spots to be in within a guild and say “I’m burned out” and then “I’m leaving.”

    Yes, it has completely stunk when people I liked left the guild and game. It happens. The people who really forged bonds kept those bonds outside of the game. And those are the people who want you happy whether you’re playing or not, in their guild or not.

    Most people realize when they don’t want to play or raid anymore. Most people just don’t want to fess up to the truth. Maybe they just don’t realize that to most guild leaderships, the truth is easier to deal with than the constant wondering.

    Luckily, my stepping down and leaving led me to a wonderful guild. 🙂

    • I’m glad you still think so. 😉

  7. Amen, sister! Although my guild is smaller and only does 10-man raids, we also suffer from the same problem. After the summer it got quiet and a few people including one officer just disappeared without a word. We think it’s cool for anyone to take a break for as long as they need, if only they tell us so we can plan for the absence.

    I’m the web admin for our forum so I can check when people log onto our page. One MIA has logged in recently, but didn’t bother to post a message. He could have sent a private message to any member he didn’t want to make a public post… but no word. Whats with that? It makes me frustrated.

    • Yeah, my favorites are the ones that not only log into the forums but also read my ‘where the fuck are you’ PM and don’t reply.

  8. “Self-centered narcissistic cockweasel” is one of the best turns of phrase I’ve seen in a while.

    • Why thank you. 😉

    • Even if I didn’t agree with this post that phrase would have won me 🙂

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