Guild History

As told by Luria.

The founding members of Lazy Peon Tavern met in another guild on Silvermoon, Wyrd Angles. That guild was, and still is as far as I know, a casual family type guild where players over level 10 could join as long as they had a pleasant personality. During the summer of 2007 this guild had started raiding in Karazhan, and our founding members had all been part of the struggle to kill the first bosses. With time it became clear that there were issues with the raid compositions and leading. Even though there at times were 5-6 nights of raids a week, most raids were just endless wipes, and we rarely got past the 4th boss encounter, the Opera. A big reason for this was the philosophy that if you were good enough to reach level 70 you were good enough to raid, which made many people sign up and get picked with green levelling gear or without knowing at all how to play in a group. The founding members were not necessarily strong players either, but throughout the weeks and months of wiping it became clear that some people were trying their best in the raids and some people were simply not trying at all. One officer wanding the boss while drinking wine, since holding the glass and healing at the same time was too hard, is a true example of “not trying” that comes to mind.

In November the frustrations were high for the group that had turned into the guild’s “core raiders”, in other words the players that signed for most raids. On occasions we had better raids, but most of the time the raid had too many low performing players and we got nowhere. Our frustrations culminated in a forum post where I gave examples of how the officers could improve on our raid situation. We took a lot of time thinking about what to write in the post to make it as non-confrontational as possible, but it was completely shot down and classed as “too hardcore” for the guild. Since I was the poster, I was told by the guild leader that it would be best for everyone if I left the guild since my opinions had been hurtful to the officers. At that time it wasn’t surprising that was the outcome of the post, because there had been some other recent hostility from the officers, for instance snooping through our private messages to each other on the guildforum. I left the guild and within a short period of time so did all the other “core raiders”.

Lazy Peon Tavern was formed the 8th of December 2007. To begin with we saw it as a joke guild, and we decided to make a really hot female dwarf alt of mine into the guild leader. It took a little over a week between leaving Wyrd Angles and forming the new guild. The reason for this was that it was hard to pick the right tabard and a guild name we liked. I don’t know how many different ones we were thinking of but in the end Zinya gave us “Lazy Peon Tavern” and we went with that. Zinya helped sign the charter, but subsequently turned out to be the only member of our “group” to stay behind in the old guild. The main reason for that was that he mostly played on the horde side, and several of his horde guildies had alliance alts in Wyrd Angles.

The initial thought of Lazy Peon Tavern was not to become a proper guild, but after a short period we had enough members to raid Karazhan and it started to seem as if we were actually going to be a real guild. All in all 15 members from Wyrd Angles left that guild to join ours. Of those members around half still play and are in Lazy Peon Tavern, and half have stopped playing World of Warcraft.

These people were (with some names edited to reflect their latest main rather than the main at that time): Luria, Ingek, Saerdon, Saredra, Vanished, Bartie, Galaxie, Pest, Gloín, Hulkhogan, Syltmunk, Efojtd, Sahrion, Gagball and Hunterivor.

Around Christmas-time of 2007 Lazy Peon Tavern had its first raid ever as a guild. We went to Karazhan, and killed all bosses but Prince Malchezaar and Nightbane. At that time that felt like a huge feat for us, having not been close to the upper floors of the raid instance before. That gave a taste for more and so we kept raiding Karazhan during the beginning of 2008 and I became the guild raid leader. In late spring we started raiding Zul’Aman as well. We had done a few tries earlier in the year and killed the first 2 bosses but been completely obliterated on Jan’Alai so we ended up not continuing down that road, until May when we went back and suddenly cleared the instance in just over a week (3 resets since the Zul’Aman resets were every 3 days).

Through this period the guild’s members remained the initial Wyrd Angles members, with the addition of a few real life friends. In the beginning of the summer of 2008 we had all 10 man content on farm and we thought it was a good idea to try to get enough members to raid 25-man content, since The Burning Crusade-raiding consisted mostly of 25-mans. The organisation of Lazy Peon Tavern at that point was nonexistent, everyone was the same rank and we had gotten a forum but all members were allowed to read all sections. We thought this needed to change if we were to start recruiting. Thus guild rules were drawn up, ranks formed, and discussions about lootsystem started, six months after actually forming the guild. Our decisions on guild organisation was that all members that we had at that point would get a veteran type rank, and 4 of us would have an officer rank. New members would get a regular member rank. The veterans and the officers would all have access to an officer forum and have equal say in all decisions, the only difference would be that officers were officially the “go to”-people for new members. This organisation was later to be changed, for the main reason that waiting for everyone to have an opinion makes decision making really slow and difficult, especially when not everyone actually has a passion to participate in such things. However at this point in time we thought this was the democratic and correct way to run our guild.

That Lazy Peon Tavern’s ranks have bar-related names was my idea (Brewmaster – Bartender – Drunk – Peon). Since the GM character, Kittenface, was my character I had to make all the ranks and I ended up being “creative”. I remember we were going to discuss changing the rank names, but to this day we still haven’t ever changed them or even talked about it.

How we came up with what lootsystem to use is a story in it’s own, and was the cause of many arguments over several months. We had used masterlooter and need/greed rolls on items up until this point, and a general attitude amongst several of our members was that the more elaborate lootsystems were hardcore and bad. It wasn’t even clear to everyone exactly what DKP was and how it worked, but still people had a bad impression of it. However there had been a few times when need/greed hadn’t felt fair, and on one or two occasions there had been upset feelings that someone was rolling on too many things and being too greedy. With these occasions in mind we decided that 25-man raiding would not work without another fairer lootsystem (since rolling is just based on luck). Thus the big discussion of what system to use began, and everything was on the table from homemade lootsystems to all kinds of DKP. After a while we decided to make a poll to decide what system to use and I decided that we should first write up examples of what the different lootsystems would look like for our guild, and then vote. The results of the vote was that we would go for Suicide Kings, however the most likely reason this was the winner was that that example was written more in depth than the other options. This vote, during the summer of 2008, was not the end of the discussion and a heated argument about changing to DKP would flare up again at the start of WotLK.

Lazy Peon Tavern’s first recruits ever were a couple that came from a Swedish guild called Tre Kronor, which was at the time crumbling. They wanted to join because they knew a member of our guild and we accepted them as trials before we had completely concluded the guild rules. At the end of June they both passed the trial period, at the same time as we officially opened our recruitment. At this time we really didn’t have anything special to offer, we thought, and we had no idea if it would be easy or hard to get recruits. However right when we opened we immediately got several applications from other members of Tre Kronor. We accepted every recruit, and passed almost every trial, and by the end of August we were suddenly just enough members for 25 man raids. In the first weeks of September we went to Magtheridon and Gruul twice, and had a brief visit into a Serpentshrine Cavern once, and did 5 bosses in Black Temple the week after the big nerf. Those four raids are the only 25-man raids Lazy Peon Tavern have ever done as a guild.

During the fall of 2008 it was becoming increasingly obvious that we had recruited too fast. It felt like two groups in the guild, the old members and the new Tre Kronor people. And we didn’t really like each other much. It also came to our attention that the couple we had initially recruited from Tre Kronor didn’t like all the new members from their old guild, but rather thought some of them were idiots. They however didn’t tell us the bad things until months later when those people were already members. This we found very concerning, and the rift between the two groups grew larger. During the weeks before Wrath of the Lich King was to come out several of the new members turned inactive, and when the expansion was released it was just a handful of the new recruits that were online and levelling. A few months later we had parted ways with most of the Tre Kronor members, and by the end of the following year we would have none of them left.

This experience taught us to not mass-recruit, especially not from the same guild, and to better know what traits fit the guild and what doesn’t. Even if we from the start had the idea to only recruit nice people we weren’t being picky enough, because we thought we were in a position where we couldn’t be. Now we are adamant to only get nice and drama free people. This has of course not always worked out, because people are people, but at least the intentions are there.

The conclusion of our recruitment-fiasco was that Lazy Peon Tavern went back to having the same members as before we did the big recruitment, and would only raid 10 man content. This decision was however not initially crystal clear and it took us until the end of 2008 to see what we had and what we should be doing. During those two months of time at the start of the Wrath of the Lich King expansion, when we still thought we were going to raid 25 man content, a few random recruits joined and left the guild. When I look back now at the applications of those people I don’t remember most of them.

At the end of 2008 we started raiding the first tier of WotLK content. We had put it off for over a month, and just done heroics, because we didn’t think we were good enough to raid yet. However the new raids were not hard at all, and we quite quickly had all the content on farm. During the spring of 2009 there were a lot of pugging going on in Silvermoon, a lot more than we had ever noticed in the past expansion, and many of us joined our first ever 25-man pugs. Comparing ourselves to people from other guilds that we had heard of, guilds we thought were so much better than our guild, was an eye-opening experience. We were doing really well and our performances appeared to be far beyond average in those pugs. The confidence boost we gained mostly through that pugging pushed us to make several raids for Ulduar the first week of release in April. For the first time ever we were in the same raid instance as the top guilds all over the world at the same time as they were there!

This new confidence boost changed the direction of the guild a little. Even if people had talked about meters and performance before it was now more openly talked about. A few people started feeling bad about their performance, when they felt they were the factors that were halting progress in Ulduar. It began to be apparent that not everyone had yet grasped the new way to play their class in accordance to the latest patch, and a few members felt like keeping up and being judged on performance was not fun. Since Naxxramas was very easy performance wasn’t an issue, but suddenly we were trying to get through what we thought was hard content. For the first time ever personal performance being better than okay was important to us. This perceived pressure led to a few members stopping raiding, and for quite a while our Ulduar progress was stuck on Mimiron. As the summer of 2009 began and people started going on vacation we started to have to cancel raids.

During the early summer we had a big discussion about the focus of the guild and if we were on the right track or not. We discussed being a casual guild with only casuals, being a raid guild with only raiders, or being a guild with both but where we defined these roles a little more for everyone to know what was expected of them. In the end it was pretty clear everyone wanted to keep raiding, and most thought we could make a change and have a raider rank and a casual rank. At this time a lot of the discussion was related to the performance issues we had in Ulduar, and I believe that the main reason why many thought it was an important topic was to point out that to be a raider we all had to step up our game. The conclusion of the discussions was that the officers were to figure out how to best implement this change, but in reality our lack of available people for raids made the officers put this topic on the backburner for quite some time.

At the middle of the summer we took an official vacation and didn’t make any raids for a few weeks, and by the next raid signup towards the end of July the interest in raiding was back. With a few new members we had found we finished off Ulduar and started ploughing through the hard modes. There were a few weeks in August when we were doing one achievement after another and really thought we were on our way to get the Ulduar meta-achievement and the mount. At this time the next tier, Trial of the Crusader, was releasing with one new boss available every reset. We were just like in Ulduar going in the first day of release, and this time we kept clearing the content in the same raid. Things seemed to be going fine, although Mimiron once again hampered the progress in Ulduar, though this time it was the Firefighter achievement.

Just as Trial of the Crusader was fully released and it was possible to try the heroic version our tank-crisis began. Suddenly 4 of our 4 tanks were temporarily unavailable and even if we had people that could tank as offspec it seemed like a really bad idea to have undergeared tanks for heroic mode content. We waited for the tanks to return, for several resets but in the end we were left with one and a half tanks (the half was sometimes available but mostly not due to schoolwork). Why two of our maintanks simultaneously decided to go afk indefinitely without telling an officer remains a mystery to me, and to this day I still consider it a bad call to wait around for them. This lack of possibility to raid the heroic content of the new tier, and the inability to finish off the mount achievement in Ulduar, led to some frustrations and complaints and a few new members decided to leave. We started going regularly to a 25-man ToC pug hosted by another guild that wanted to merge or cooperate somehow with us, but we declined partly because our different jargons didn’t match and partly because we didn’t believe in merges after the Tre Kronor fiasco. Instead we by chance scrambled up a few new members in November and right before the release of Icecrown Citadel we finally cleared the Grand Crusader content and finished off the Ulduar heroic modes.

During December of 2009 and the start of the new year the interest in raiding was at an all time high. Icecrown Citadel was releasing one wing at a time and we suddenly had enough interest to make 2 raid groups of equal quality a week. The raids felt very successful and we were burning through the new wings at the same week as they released. We also started making a ICC 25-man on Saturdays, where we took the guildies that wanted to go and then filled the group up with pugs. Over time this pug would turn into a fun event every week, both because the mood in the pug was nice but also because we were quite successful as far as pugs went. The pug would continue all up until the Cataclysm pre-patch in September of 2010 and during this time we made many friends of the regulars we had, of which some are now members of our guild.

During January 2010 we implemented the casual and raider ranks we had discussed during the previous summer and we also put the final end to the notion that drunks were unofficial bartenders that would participate equally in decision making. This had not worked in practise for quite some time, if ever, and instead things were discussed between the bartenders outside of the forums. The ranks now changed to drunks being raiders and peons being casuals, without any regard of how long anyone had been in the guild for or what contributions they had made. This new organisation, where the raider rank meant that you had priority for raids and responsibility to sign up and keep your character up to date, was a well-needed change as far as raid organisation went.

In the beginning of February the end wing of ICC was opened and the Lich King fight became available. We had understood that the end fight in Icecrown Citadel would be complicated, because it was almost 15 minutes long and had many different phases. We had around 3 raids for the Lich King and were still learning basic parts of the fight, when the big Lunar lag-festival of 2010 started. It is difficult to explain to anyone who wasn’t playing on Silvermoon at that time, and it is even hard for the ones that were to remember just how bad this period was; but World of Warcraft was close to unplayable for over a month’s time during normal playing hours. It was laggy to the point that people would log in to do their auction house shopping for consumables in the morning before they went to work, because they knew that trying to buy anything past 5 pm would be close to impossible. Some guilds migrated, some guilds changed raid hours to daytime or night time, and the ones that didn’t, the ones like us, spent a lot of time just trying to zone into instances without being disconnected and then watching our characters cast instant spells for over a minute and wiping on trash. During this time we kept trying to raid every week, hoping that things would get better, but our progress on the Lich King encounter suffered greatly.

In the beginning of April the main lag issues got resolved by Blizzard and The 11th of April we finally killed the Lich King and could start looking at the heroic modes. It turned out to be beyond successful and we had 8 bosses down in the first reset, and a few weeks more to get the ninth and tenth. We had some struggles getting the Sindragosa heroic mode right and it took until the beginning of summer to down her, leaving only Lich King heroic. We decided to not rush this hard mode but rather try to farm what we had already done for a while, especially since the last instance of WotLK was soon about to come out and also because we hadn’t had time to do full clears of ICC every reset so there were a few raiders with 11/12 heroic mode progress but no Lich King kill.

Two resets later the Ruby Sanctum was live. Since it was released on US servers a day earlier than on European servers I read a lot about the instance on American forums and concluded that the normal mode would be too easy for us and that we would want to work on the heroic mode right from the start. This was a huge miscalculation on my part, and the first two wipenights in heroic Ruby Sanctum made the Halion fight be the most hated encounter in the guild’s history. The mood got almost hostile, and several members were very vocal about how wrong it was to have attempted heroic mode before normal and how crap the fight was. A few members claimed to be burned out by Halion, and after having only 6 raid nights to Ruby Sanctum over 3 resets (killing him in normal mode twice) we never went back for the rest of the expansion. This also resulted in me deciding we shouldn’t attempt Lich King heroic mode at all, since it was a much longer fight and considered to be significantly harder than Halion. I still think that was the correct decision to make, even if a few of us really would’ve wanted to finish up the expansion with all heroic modes down. In this case we kept the peace and relaxed with farm content until the release of Cataclysm, leaving two heroic modes unfinished of which one was completely untried.

During the early autumn of 2010 we did our first ever change of officers. Two officers went on to become members and one member became an officer, going from having four officers down to having three. A few months later circumstances would make the new officer step down and the guild would be down to having only 2 officers, of which one were on an extended break from the game. This meant that for the most part of 2011, and as I write this, Lazy Peon Tavern has only had one active officer, and that is I.

A few weeks before the release of Cataclysm we had a guild meeting on Ventrilo where we amongst other things confirmed that we would keep aiming for hard modes in the upcoming raid content. The Ruby Sanctum events did in that regard leave us unaffected.

As an overall summary of the WotLK period can be said it is the time during which we matured as a guild and figured out what we wanted and what worked for us. A big reason this was possible was the fact that all raiding became available in 10-man format, and we could scrap the idea of having to become a 25-man guild to be able to take part in end game content.

In December 2010 Cataclysm came out and most of us were level 85 within a few days. We however waited until after Christmas with scheduling the first raid, even if a few were really raidhungry way before that. Our progress through the first tier of Cataclysm during the winter and spring of 2011 was slow and steady. A big difference to the WotLK raid scene was that the encounters were harder for us to execute, and we had a while of being stuck on all three end bosses before finally downing them. The last end boss to go down was Nefarian, and it wasn’t until after we were done with all of the normal mode content that we attempted heroic modes.

Around Easter time the tide turned and we started having less signups for raids. Some raiders were cramming for exams while some players had less time to raid for other reasons, and the overall interest in signing for raids seemed to drop. We had already found ourself being short on healers due to some circumstances early in the year causing us to lose two healers. However now we appeared to be short on everything. At the beginning of summer we had cleared four heroic modes but we could hardly get raids together without bringing casuals as well as outsiders. As the second tier of the expansion, Firelands, got closer our raiding possibilities appeared to be off the deep end.

The weeks around the release of Firelands we tried to rally up the raiders. Three casual members started raider trials, and around the same time, out of the blue, we received applications from three healers. With six new raiders we were suddenly more than prepared for Firelands. It didn’t take us very long to down the first six encounters in Firelands, but killing Ragnaros turned out to be a struggle, similar to the endbosses of tier 11. During the first two months of Firelands, July and August, we got the first six bosses on farm. We had several healer recruits during these two months, of which only two ended up as full members. It has to be said that without those trials we would have had to cancel many of the raids during those months. Instead we had our most consistent raiding summer ever, because even though we were sometimes struggling with less than desirable setups we were at least raiding, which was more than we expected in the middle of June.

During August the signups started piling up. Raiders were coming back from vacations and suddenly it was clear that the raidgroup had gotten too big. The first reset of September we finally killed Ragnaros, and as we started thinking about heroic modes we begun to regularly have to pass four or five people per raid, mostly dps players. This type of high interest period we had seen before, but what was to become the difference would be the duration of the period. While previous high interest periods had lasted little over a month, usually while content was new, this period would last to the end of the year and into 2012. During the rest of tier 12 and the beginning of tier 13, rotating who would pass would turn out to be the biggest issue when organising the raids.

During the autumn we cleared the first five heroic modes of Firelands quite rapidly. The sixth boss was Beth’tilac, and it took us some time to learn how to execute this heroic mode. By the time we downed her, in early November, tier 13 was closing in and we decided to leave the last heroic mode of tier 12, Ragnaros, behind and just farm what we had already killed.

Dragon Soul was the last tier of the expansion and was released in the beginning of December. The first raidweek we cleared 7/8 bosses to our surprise. The end encounter didn’t appear very hard either, if we had just extended the last raid we would probably have done a full clear the first week. In the beginning of January 2012 we started heroic modes with a thought at the back of our minds that this would be the first tier we would clear fully on heroic mode while it was current content. This thought would turn out to be very far from reality.

When Dragon Soul was released so was the new feature Looking For Raid. This meant that most raiders were going to the LFR easy version of Dragon Soul several times a week with different alts. After a while this repetitive raiding of the same eight bosses over and over again would lead to both boredom and an utter dislike of the raid instance itself.

The first heroic mode kill in Dragon soul came almost immediately, but after that we struggled a while on the second, Yor’Sahj. After we finally had him down after over seventy failed attempts, we progressed to 5/8 heroic before the end of March. At this time the spirit was hitting an all time low and raiders were constantly complaining about boredom and about how dull and tedious Dragon Soul was. While we we had the first 5 heroic bosses on farm and were trying to progress on the 6th, Warmaster Blackhorn, interest in raiding was dying off. As May begun we were cancelling raids, without anyone really having any interest in us finding the last few people to fill up. May 15th Diablo III was released and it essentially became the start of a summer break from both Dragon Soul and WoW, in a way that had never happened before in the history of the guild. We were all on siesta!

During the summer of 2012 nothing much was happening in the guild. No raids were organised, and hardly anyone was online. The new expansion, Mists of Pandaria, was announced to be out in the end of September, and it wasn’t until it was drawing near that people started logging back on.

To be continued…

Luria: If any member feel like I have missed out any essential events they would like to be commented on, or that something written is incorrect, tell me and I will try to rewrite to fix it.