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WoW: How top guilds benefit from their communities in Race to World First

What the absolute top guilds do in the race for the World First Kill of a final boss has hardly anything to do with what the millions of other players do and love in WoW. Not only is the level of play hard to compare to the run-of-the-mill holiday guild, but the time and effort put in during the preparation and the race itself is something most players would hardly want to do, let alone be able to do. That's perfectly fine, though. WoW is so multi-faceted and everyone should be able to do exactly what they enjoy most in it. Some like to farm mounts and do a dungeon with friends every now and then. Others grind gear for weeks, prepare, then take a vacation and shoot 18 hours a day through the raid until the end boss is dead.

Creative Top Players

What is often amazing is the creativity with which the top guilds try to gain an advantage. Blizzard has tried several times to curb this and has now simply given up. Whether it was limited attempts per boss, countered by hordes of twinks, or the elimination of the loot master, nothing succeeded. Quite the opposite, in fact. Never before have guilds poured so much money, gold, and time into fighting for World First. At least that's true for the top guilds like Echo and Limit. Other guilds, like the Chinese group Aster, have multiple teams. While some sleep, others test tactics and create the perfect strategy, which is then implemented by well-rested raiders.
Whoever defeats the mythical Sylvanas first and gets to see her temporary end has won the World First Race. Source: Blizzard The biggest advantage in WoW (buy now 14,99 € ) is the gear. Those who have better gear on their characters also have the greatest chance of a World First - at least currently, where absolute top guilds hardly differ in terms of playing ability. As a result, guilds here are also particularly creative.

From split runs to loot events and community calls

The first attempts to get extra gear on characters resulted in split runs many, many years ago. Many twinks plus a few mainchars, who all got gear, killed the bosses in the easier mode. Then all the mainchars together killed the bosses in the hardest mode. However, with personal loot, it's not that easy anymore. Therefore, the guilds got creative here as well.

S Complexity Limit is the guild to beat. Source: Limit

plit runs still exist, but they are no longer as effective. Items can only be passed on when better items are available in the slot. This is rarely the case with the twinks of the top players, especially in the first and second ID. So how to get gear, the guild leaders thought.

If you want to have a certain item on a certain char, you ideally build a group of players who can all capture that item and also trade it - the more the better. If there are 29 other mages in the group besides my mage, there's a very good chance that one of them will loot the staff of the powerful OP mage and be able to give it to me. And that's exactly what guilds are doing excessively now!

Community, pls help!

It's not quite as extreme as the above example, of course - because even top players still need a few tanks and healers, but it's going in that direction. Some guilds, such as Method, have held events before the World First race even started, where potential traders (players who could capture a desired item and trade it) were invited to kill bosses and bring all the items to the mainchars. Even more effectively and excessively, guilds like Echo and Limit go about this using the power of their large followings and community.
It's not just Method that has been looking for players to trade gear to. Source: buffed Once guilds are at roadblock bosses and realize they need more gear, the community split-run machinery is fired up. Small groups of players, called out in the various streams and in-game communities, gather a full group of players around them, all of whom can loot and trade the pre-determined items. Then this group usually knocks down one or two specific bosses (the various IDs were previously saved on other twinks and now provided) and collects all the relevant improvements from the participants. Ny'alotha has also had such runs. However, the scope continues to increase. Source: method.gg They in turn get the thanks, the recognition and the fame of having been part of an Echo, Limit, Method or XY run. And of course there's gold. Lots and lots of gold. Successful trades are rewarded with 500,000 to two million gold - depending on the item. "Next level BoEs" if you will. There have been so-called "helper runs" like this in the past, too. But never nearly as excessive and umpteen times in the middle of the actual progress.

More fans, more power

Of course, the whole thing only works if enough players can be found. Being able to trade heroic weapons or ruler armor in the second ID is quite rare. Apart from that, the players also have to have the time. Because such runs are (or at least were in the first days of the raid) not pre-planned. Instead, the raid leaders decided on short notice that more item levels were needed and everyone should start building community split run groups. Behind the scenes, guilds have teams of helpers who are constantly gathering and preparing potential players. They are also actively looking for more helpers if, for example, a certain class is needed but not enough are represented.

Imagine if shards of dominion were tradable. Then there would probably be shard trade runs. Source: buffed Of course, guilds like Echo or Limit, where tens of thousands watch the various streams, have little problem with this. Smaller guilds, on the other hand, don't have those options. This opens up the gap between the absolute top and the rest even more. Already, for most of the top guilds, 3rd place is the targeted and proclaimed goal. Keeping up with the giants of Echo and Limit? Neither Method, nor Pieces, nor the German top guild Aversion dare to do that. And realistically speaking, we have to agree with this assessment.

Where is this all going?

The World First race has long since ceased to be a competition in which the best players or the most sophisticated tactics win. Instead, it is more reminiscent of the former Formula 1: Whoever can invest more coal and resources (money, gold and time) has the best car (equipment) and thus becomes world champion (World First).
Of course, this isn't to say that Echo or Limit players aren't among the best in the world, because they definitely are. However, without spending oodles of gold, preparation time, and resources, even these teams would no longer have a chance at a World First kill.

Team Aster has now gone a step further, as briefly touched on above, and is raiding with two teams at once to make the most of the mythic ID. For several contents now, we've seen raid leaders who no longer play themselves, but only make announcements - the Race to World First is becoming more and more professionalized. And the clever minds in the guilds will find more ways to gain further minimal advantages through great use of resources.

What do you think - how will the Race to World First evolve? Will Blizzard eventually put a stop to it with drastic measures, and if so, what might they look like? Or will we see more creative measures in the future to gain even more advantages?

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