While moving to Stormrage brought immediate improvements to the raid, and was undeniably the correct decision, I want to continue on that trajectory. Being on a small server, where networks overlapped heavily, a laid back approach served us well. We never needed much in the way of formal requirements, applications, or trials, and almost always knew someone who knew someone to comment on newcomers. If people performed well, had the right attitude, and meshed with the group; it was good enough for me. This approach served us well for years and even got us some lovely Stormrage additions. However, I think it is time to move toward a more formal process.
Until we update the website's functionality, I have created a Google forms guild application for new potential raiders. We are also adding a formal trial period. We are still ironing out the details, but it is my hope that by adding players who are willing to put the time in to fill out an application and complete a trial will be invested and result in longer retention.
I would be lying if I said that I was not frustrated with last Saturday's raid, where we had so many out last minute that we were not even able to scrape 20 together for any attempts. I had a spot filled for the absence I was aware of in advance, but was not ready to replace 4 additional people. Due to how mythic lockouts work in Legion, it was absolutely crippling. We all raid for fun, and it is important to have fun. People burn out, things come up, etc. I completely understand. However, giving advanced notice makes a world of difference, and I want to make sure that those of us who want to raid can continue to have fun doing that reliably.
For the final raid of Legion, I hope to field as close to 30 members as we can in heroic. For mythic, I have full intentions of taking the most reliable performers out of the group. If we start with more than 20, due to natural flux, I believe we will be well positioned for mythic the moment we are ready.
This is not a threat or meant to be a passive aggressive warning. I am trying to make the best decisions I can for the overall good of the group. I choose to organize our raid, and that choice adds additional responsibilities and things to take care of. The pros far outweigh the cons because I love our raid group. I love fighting with each other, I love the jokes (even though I am often the butt of them), and I love our environment. I look forward to hanging out every weekend, and I feel compelled to be honest that dealing with roster stress every week is sapping that enjoyment away. If you show up and do your job, I am not looking to replace you. Please do not be worried. I want to make sure that the people that are here to put the time in get to do progression content every week. My primary goal is for all of us to keep on the progress train and have fun together.