Immortalis Noctis are unquestionably one of the best European guilds in WildStar (other notable guilds include Codex and Eugenic). We interviewed them prior to the launch of WildStar and as was expected, they’ve triumphed in a game that offers notoriously difficult content. What I find surprising however having spoken to them in the last few days is the greatest challenge they’ve encountered: filling their Raid roster.
You might envisage that a guild which has comfortably cleared Genetic Archives (WildStar’s first Raid instance that requires 20 people) would be inundated with offers from players to fall into their ranks in order to participate in the 40 man Datascape. Unfortunately, that isn’t strictly true and like many guilds in WildStar they’ve struggled to locate enough players, of the right classes and skill, to guarantee a full Raid roster.
Part of the problem, as you might expect, is that like all massively multiplayer games WildStar saw its fair share of players leave after the first month. Once bulging rosters pre-launch were slashed and as a result, forming 20 players for Genetic Archives proved impossible for many guilds while 40 seemed a near impossible task.
You might consider that having only 40 players online at anyone time sounds a small task but it’s surprisingly difficult when you factor in peoples working patterns and play times. I’ve been part of guilds that have over 125 members and yet seen fewer than 30 online of an evening. It’s even worse when those players aren’t necessarily the classes compositions you require in order to Raid effectively. It’s no use have even 50 people online if all of those are made of Stalker Tanks and DPS Spellslingers: it has to be an equal spread according to the encounter.
While it’s easy to point a finger at WildStar’s population decline as the main cause of guilds lacking player numbers, I really don’t believe it’s the cause and instead, the issue is twofold:
There Are Too Many Raiding Guilds
I fully appreciate that guilds want to carve their own niche in a massively multiplayer game and that many guilds who moved to WildStar have been together for a long time. However, what I often struggle to understand is how guilds who, despite all that, lack the infrastructure of the high end Raiding guilds don’t pursue mergers or alliances. I’ve been part of small and medium sized guilds in WildStar who wish to Raid and from the very moment they entered Genetic Archives it was evident they would fail. Whether it was from a lack of organisation in constructing groups, their loot system or a lack of players, the whole package was often missing because the approach was too casual for hardcore content. I’m not suggesting small guilds shouldn’t try, nor am I suggesting that small guilds can’t have success. What I am suggesting however is that small guilds with big ambitions, who are struggling to fill their Raid roster every week, should seek out others to merge with.
Every day in Illium I see the same Raiding guilds looking for additional members in order to fill their Raid for Genetic Archives. It’s clear, then, that these guilds have fewer than 20 players of the right composition that they can count on week in, week out. Considering we are all here to play WildStar and its highest level content, is it not sensible for these guilds to merge in order to strengthen their numbers. Even if it means benching some players during Raid nights or forging a second Raid group, at least the content is being played instead of guild members constantly stressing over whether or not they have enough of the right players.
Immortalis Noctis have recently done just this and although they’ve retained their guild name and website, they’ve absorbed 18 Raid Attuned players from Nosta - one of many skilled EU guilds that didn’t quite have enough players every evening. What I love so much about this willingness to merge is the fact that the game is taking precedence over guild pride. Two guilds have been strengthened and the likelihood of Datascape being played has significantly increased. Its also given rise to a second Raid group for Genetic Archives which although presents its own set of challenges, it means that despite the guild having already cleared GA, there’s a renewed difficulty in taking fresh blood through.
Raids Are Seen As Too Hardcore
I may sounds as if I’m contradicting myself now, but Raids - the content themselves - are relatively easy. It’s an exercise in mechanical learning rather than the enemy AI truly surprising you and if you have eyes, ears and a brain, it’s highly likely you’ll be more than capable in a short period of time of progressing through the content. Where the difficulty arises, as you might predict from my previous reasoning, is in organising 20 to 40 players of the right composition and worse, across multiple days of the week. It requires a very organised infrastructure and one that take a great deal of personal time outside of the game, in order to coordinate. Having had the tour of Immortalis Noctis’ guild this week for the purpose of this column, I have to say it’s one of the slickest operations I’ve seen. From its website to Raid enrolment it’s all incredibly easy and most importantly, accessible for all the members. What I found so refreshing about Immortalis Noctis’ approach to raiding is the fact that it isn’t allconsuming. You don’t have to sell your soul to be part of the guild and nor are you required to attend 6 days a week and be shouted at by some power hungry Raid leader (this type of guild genuinely exists in WildStar, though I won’t name and shame). That's a good thing in this genre.
So if you are Attuned and looking to be challenged by WildStar’s content or are simply looking for something more to do, I’d highly recommend that you check out Immortalis Noctis. If you aren’t looking for a guild but are struggling for members, it might be worth talking to them with a view to merging. More than anything, I think it’s important for the WildStar community to work together in this way in order to continue to play through the content that Carbine have produced. Raiding is an important part of the game and it'd be a real shame to see guilds continue to struggle just because of a lack of players.
If you want to join Immortalis Noctis, head on over to their website.
Have a WildStar Guild you'd like to talk about? Is your Guild undertaking something unique? Let me know by emailing me at [email protected]