What GMs Want to See on Your Guild App

What GMs Want to See on Your Guild App


Every day, thousands of players are released from guilds. Thousands more leave them voluntarily. Some are looking to take things easier. Others want more out of their gaming experience. What do they all have in common? A desire for a change of scenery. Yeah, it’s the same old Azeroth. But the guild atmosphere is hardly similar.

When I was 15, I landed my first job as a high school computer tech. In the weekends, the school was commandeered by an older generation of adults learning how to “make millions of dollars via Ebay and “how to use windows  (I still remember vividly the longest possible method to create a folder on the desktop).

The experiences during those times taught me the extraordinary value of patience. Because I tell you, nothing in this world prepares you for patience more than trying to teach a bunch of senior citizens where the any key is.

I was the first among my friends to have a real paying job. “Wow, they would say, “A real paying job with real money! 

You see, it’s around that time in a youth ‘s life where the desire to become independent from their parents begins to kick in. Of course, the inverse is also true. I ‘m almost positive parents want to spend less on their kids. My friends starting feeling the same way. They wanted their own CD players (that ‘s metallic discs that held around 18 songs). That‘s the stuff my generation was into as MP3 players didn’t kick in until the year later since they weren‘t affordable yet.

My advice and consult was frequently sought after. My friends all wanted jobs of their own. I was the only one among them that went through the entire stage from resume to interview. I tried to coach them with what little I knew from my own experience. I helped them prep for their interviews after proofreading their resumes.

Nothing makes mom and dad happier more than knowing that some sucker hired their son after all, right?

And now I speak to you as a raider, officer, and GM who has sifted through hundreds upon hundreds of guild applications over the past several years.

What Matticus likes

  1. Simplicity: Don ‘t use 7 words when 4 will work. I scan most of my apps unless something catches my eye. Be blunt and straight to the point.
  2. Formatting: I hate my room. It’s a mess. I don‘t want to see a reflection of my room in your guild app. Put some effort in your punctuation and capitalization.
  3. Goal: What you want to do. Make sure it ‘s something that you actually want. The successful applicants into Conquest were the ones who said “I want to raid.”
  4. Past tense: Raided Molten Core. Killed Illidan. Acquired Twilight Drake. Achieved “Gotta Go!” .
  5. Contributions: Organized sheeps. Set up main tank targets. Lit up Warlock summons without being asked. Made healing assignments. Took care of DKP.
  6. Essential stats without having to armory: 2240 spellpower. 950 MP5. Important information that‘s included without me having to click the armory right away. If I‘m really interested, I‘ll do it after the fact to make sure you‘re not giving me a plate full of bull-shiitake.
  7. Guildie endorsements: These can make or break your chances. Make sure the player actually knows you and has good things to say since it can backfire.
  8. Link to blog: Not everyone has one. Bonus points if you do. It made the difference for Amava since it lent him extra credibility (but he doesn‘t know that, so don‘t tell him ;))
  9. Hobbies: This is what gives your digital avatar a little extra personality. Whether you‘re big into sports or an avid poker player, it‘s something I ‘m curious to know. Still waiting for the day where I see “Modeled for this agency.
  10. Extra: Whatever else you did that shows your ability to think critically. I‘m not here to hold your hand. The GM isn‘t supposed to be the chessmaster that instructs where every piece is supposed to attack. They‘re the conductor who controls the rhythm, beat, and sound that an orchestra plays for a standing ovation.
  11. PM to the GM: Rarely happens. But it takes energy and ingenuity to go straight to the boss. Sometimes a private message adds a nice touch.
  12. Customize: I‘ve seen cut and paste application jobs. Sometimes applicants forget to change the name of the guild or player name.

I can‘t speak for all GM ‘s or recruiting officers. There‘s always someone out there who has more experience. I ‘m going to toss a shoutout to Kreeoni, Veneretio, and Siha as they‘re all well respected GMs in my book, and ask them what they like to see in an app (Ceruleagos, I know you‘re out there reading, too!)

As always, reader thoughts are always welcome.

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About Matticus

Matticus is the founder of World of Matticus and Plus Heal. Read more of his columns at WoW Insider. League of Legends player. Caffeine enthusiast.


  1. Putting me on the spot, eh 😉

    Well I unfortunately have to pre-face this with that I’m not the GM of my guild, I’m the Raid Leader. That being said, I probably muck in administration a lot more than is healthy for any Raid Leader.

    So, What does Vene like?

    – Why you left your last guild? – We’ll find out one way or another, might as well let us know.
    – Why you spec/gear/gem/enchant the way you do? – So few people take the time to explain any of these. Don’t assume we understand the lastest trends of your class either, but do assume that we can look at EJ for 5 minutes too.
    – Upfront with your expectation from the guild as well as why you think those expectations are realistic.
    – Talking on Ventrilo – Nothing tells us about you faster. If you’re shy that’s fine, but expect a steady string of questions on your trial run
    – An effort to get to know the non-officers of the guild – The reality is that your trial run may be the only close contact you ever get with many of the officers. It’s the non-officers of the guild that you can expect to be spending the majority of your time with.
    – Patience – It can take a long time for your app to be processed. It’s okay to bump your app occasionally, but don’t PM me everytime you’re online.
    – The obvious one… don’t PM any one during a raid, ever.

    Veneretios last blog post..It snuck up on us… we’re Amazing Add Tanks

  2. I wonder if that’s something that just goes against the culture of my realm (Eonar EU), but I’ve never heard of a guild actually checking references. Do you guys honestly do that for every application you’re taking seriously?

    Avonars last blog post..One of my major faults

  3. The only thing I’d add to the list is evidence of broad game knowledge. What do I mean? There are certain things that telegraph broader intelligence on a players part – reference to alternative specs or points of contention in theorycraft and why they’ve made the choices they’ve made. They don’t need to explain everything to me. They just need to make it clear that they’re able to explain everything.

    Feists last blog post..FeistTheRogue: @mattycus Ever? Mother Sharhaz. I don’t think any fight was quite so punishing to moderate lag as that. In Wrath? Kel’Thuzad. MC->fun?

  4. “bull-shiitake”….Matt stop being such a mushroom 🙂

  5. Love the post.

    I’d like to see more guilds also following some sort of list like this as well. My boyfriend and I are looking for a different guild but we have no idea where to start. We obviously know the trouble makers, because they are the loudest. Each guild recruitment tends to be so generic, I don’t actually know if I would fit in or not! Even my own guild doesn’t *really* let the person applying what is and isn’t expected of them. I don’t know… maybe a good post along these same lines would be for guidelines for guilds to get good players interested in applying to their guild in the first place. Expectations, not just of raiding, but of personalities, tones, etc. My current guild recruited me with the promise of a mature atmosphere but it really turned out to be mostly 16 year old males talking about penises all day.

    We’d even be willing to switch servers but it’s so hard to gauge a guild from a generic Have tabard, 2 bank tabs, raid on Wednesdays and Thursdays!

    I definitely agree with players being through and honest in a guild app but I’d like to see more guilds be more open about themselves as well.

  6. While not in the same league as you guys when it comes to raiding and requirements, I also look for/ask the following:

    1. “Have you applied to any other guilds?” The ‘barn door’ applicant.who has applied to 8 bajillion other guilds in the hope of landing a spot. I like applicants to have read about our guild, decided that they agree with what we stand for and have made a considered decision on putting in an application to us specifically. Multi-apps rings alarm bells for guild hoppers. If someone answers ‘no’, I’ll still take a random peek of other guilds on our realm.

    2. “How stable/fast is your internet connection?” Maybe not an issue for some countries, but for those of us in the ‘land down under’ where decent internet access is not always the norm, having the tank disappear repeatedly mid-raid is disruptive.

    3. I look for a mention of ‘cheesecake’. In our “Retro Manifesto” I go through what we expect etc, what applicants can expect from us. I ask all applicants to read it from start to finish. At the bottom of the Manifesto I ask them to mention ‘cheesecake’ in their app so I know they’ve read the ENTIRE thing and are making an informed, well-read decision with respect to applying. Amazing how many people answer ‘yes’ to “Have you read the Retro Manifesto and agree with its contents?”.

    Ok I’m now officially late for my train.

    Great article btw 🙂

  7. Since the headhunter in my guild wants nothing to do with applications, the Guild Leader and myself are usually the ones to handle applications.

    1. We don’t want extremely short answers. We don’t want extremely long ones either. Two to Four sentences is good.

    2. Armory link. It is a must have, and below I’ll state why.

    3. “Wrath Raiding Experiences.” We do this so we can then check on armory and see if they were ballsy enough to lie to our faces.

    4. “What do you expect from our Guild?” We want to know your expectations, and expect you to be upfront with us, as we will be completely blunt with you.

    5. “Why us? Tell us why exactly do you want to join this guild?” An important question. This helps weed out the sponges.

    Recently, we added these last three questions.

    6. What is Aces High?

    7. What is your Sons of Hodir Rep?

    8. If you were to get pulled over by an old, fat man with candy, what would you do?

    After all that, we do a ventrilo interview, and if they succeed with that, they are put on a two week trial. If they do not improve or show bad performance, they are kicked with no exceptions.

    Wukkis last blog post..Does Gender Effect Your Guild Leadership Success?

  8. @Avonar: Yup, for a serious app we even check every guild they’ve ever been in. (using Warcraft Realm’s Character History) That data shows us if someone is a guild hopper among other things.

    That being said, not all guilds would be run the same way, but we’re an 18+ only guild that holds everyone to a high standard. We don’t like kicking people so we’re very cautious to let anyone in. Generally speaking, you need to know someone to get in. Very, very few people get in anymore unless they’ve got a friend in the guild.

    Veneretios last blog post..It snuck up on us… we’re Amazing Add Tanks

  9. I’ve been lurking here for a while, so taking this opportunity to say thankyou for all the informed threads and comments I have picked up. This paricular thread piqued my interest enough to make my first post due to my somewhat unique position…
    How would an application be viewed from a person who has a raiding char/officer in an EU guild who needs to start from scratch over on a US realm?

    This is my position currently.
    Whilst I havent yet created a US account, I have relocated to the states. Since Blizzard will not/can’t do EU to US transfers, I have to build up a new character from scratch.
    My first thought is to find a casual guild to get to 80 with and then apply to a raiding guild later, but would be curious to know if a raiding guild would consider adoption of a char who would level with them for the purposes of raiding with them later?
    I am assuming here that the destination guild would be one where I could raid 3 nights a week, and one where lower level alts were welcome.
    If an application was accepted, then both I and the guild would get to know each other, group occasionally, and if things worked out from both sides, I would be raiding with people I know later.

    Oh, and whilst a teeny bit off-topic, would be very grateful for any tips on how to choose a server to start a new main on. 🙂 ( apologies for off-topic /slapself )

  10. I totally agree with all the points in the post except the first. We’ve turned down people because they’ve used the bare minimum of words to explain their point.

    Q: What Addons do you use? (DBM or Big Wigs, Omen, oRA2 are required)

    A: Big Wigs, Omen, oRA2.

    or the other great one:

    Q: If you disagreed with the RL’s strategy in a fight, how would you approach the RL about it?

    A: Talk to them.

    If you don’t write enough, it looks like you spent 5 mins writing a throw-away answer that indicates you don’t care enough to take the time to write a proper answer. Especially on the Addons question, for some reason, bad apps never tell us any other addons than the required, and one guy even put “DBM or Big Wigs, Omen, oRA2”.

  11. Jormundgard says:

    Linking your blog can backfire. I apped for a guild recently and didn’t link my blog, but for whatever reason the GM looked up the email address and it took him there. He then publicly quoted posts in the app and said that I didn’t have the right attitude to join.

    I think I could have still had a slot if I had insisted, but I got so bothered by the public quotes that I just withdrew the application. All’s fair in public posts, but the lack of sensitivity turned me off.

  12. Oooohh, my blog actually helped open up opportunity for me. Happy Hunter. thx for the link.

    regarding applications:

    Follow directions: If a guild has a template, use it. If they ask for specific information, give specific answers.

    If the guild has no template, give an executive summary in bullet-format at the top and provide detail below. GM’s who skim will get their information quickly, GM’s who like detail will read further.

    That format works well in any persuasive writing. Open with summary, follow with supporting detail, close with restatement of the summary or an action-plan.

    Amavas last blog post..ORA2 Tank Frame Misdirection Addon?

  13. Bitterend says:

    I think guilds really shoot themselves in the foot by limiting classes and races and the number of members they except etc; this is especially true in WoW where raid sizes are more limited than they are in Everquest. And where most raids are instanced unlike Everquest. There is no reason a guild cant become huge and still function effectively. All that is needed is an officer core large enough to run things and enough raid leaders to maintain multiple raid forces. And who is to say that everyone in a large raiding guild must raid? If you have a number of raiding forces why cant some other members or new recruits choose to be members but not be in the raiding forces? they can contribute to the guild in other areas like being gatherers or crafters or any number of other areas or just to have fun and make friends. Far to often people think that raidiing guilds and casual family guilds need to be exclusive, this is only true in the minds of guild leaders with limited vision. I was a member of a hard core raiding guild in Everquest with over 400 active members and we fielded 2 and sometimes 3 sixty to seventy two man raid forces simultaniously 3 to 4 nights a week. The guild would except almost anyone who wished to become a member (regardless of class or level) as long as they were not drama queens, but once a member they would be granted raid status uppon meeting certain strict guidlines. This allows for a guild to experience a best of both worlds. yes there are some negatives whichIm sure the ubber elitist will soon point out but the positives far outweigh them. So stop being so narrow minded and be all you can be 🙂

    Oh and let up on all the dam punctuation and grammar crap this is not college level English here nor is it a RL job interview, its a friggin game so goooooooo get laid and take a deep breath, and chil!

    • Bitter: Unlike Everquest, WoW has a lot of morons that play the game. 11 million+ subscribers vs whatever the number is that Everquest has. THat’s something to keep in mind. Note that you were in a hard core raiding guild in Everquest. I’d say that everyone who played Everquest already was hardcore to an extent. Probably a lot more hardcore than a lot of WoW players. Yes they can contribute and be gatherers or crafters. But I doubt anyone really pays 15 bucks a month just to farm. Like you said, this isn’t a job.

      The application process for most guilds is to filter out stupid people that want to apply and try to get into the pants of your guild. It’s up to the GMs themselves how they want to frame it. Some have relaxed and loose guidelines. Others have a more stringent process. You’re right, this is a game. No one wants to play with people who are going to stand in fires. While it’s not a bullet proof method, it does have its advantages.

  14. Bitterend says:

    I think someone should start a new website and call it the woman of warcraft! It would be sort of a showcase for all the hot woman who play wow so we can dispell that old myth that only geeking looking guys play these games. And I would defenantly like to see Wynthea and Sydera as the first two featured members 🙂


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