At the end of last June, the gates of Hellfire Citadel opened wide, and teams of players began competing for World of Warcraft’s current highest honor: the World First kill of the current raiding tier’s final boss: Archimonde. The progression race was hard-fought over three reset periods, the first race to do so since Lei Shen in Mists of Pandaria. In the end, the victory went to top raiding guild Method, who had also claimed victory in Tier 17 over Warlord Blackhand, and shared a contested victory with Paragon against Garrosh at the end of the previous expansion. Unfortunately, Method announced today that their guild, as we now know it, is no more.
Between statements issued by raid leader Kuznam and guild master Sco, the problems seem to stem from multiple areas, including leadership disagreements, different opinions on how Method as a whole (including the organization, which spans a broad range of games) should function, and the general decline of top-tier WoW raiding. You can view both statements in full at Manaflask, but here are the main highlights:
From Kuznam/Pottm’s statement:
"With this statement we’d like to briefly let you guys know about why we left and what our goals are for the future.The reasons for leaving Method basically come down to 2 points:1) Lack of leadership within the Method guild2) Different opinions on the direction of the WoW PvE guild Method and the organisation MethodAfter a lot of talking on both matters, we weren’t able to to get to common ground and couldn’t find solutions that worked for both sides. This is why a majority of the PvE guild decided to start something fresh, completely cut off from the Method network and management."
And from Sco:
"There has been a pretty bad atmosphere and strained relationships in Method, and while in the past the unified goal of pushing for world first has kept the guild together this is evidently no longer the case. In short a very basic summary of issues that caused separation;"
"World of Warcraft, and more specifically hardcore raiding is in decline. There is a lack of competition; 2 Horse race versus Paragon each tier. The effort required to raid at a hardcore level (locked away for 2-3 weeks) is not necessarily enjoyed as much as it previously was."
"People are motivated to play by different factors and at various levels, as always external factors like money are involved."
"Lack of leadership. To state it plainly; the member’s faith in the officer team’s ability to lead due to motivation and drive wasn’t at its strongest. Over time there has been a ‘transfer of power’ between the officer team and the members. For example raid leading was done by Kuznam and certain other activities was being organised by members."
"Different views on the Method expansion inside and outside WoW."
Sco remains in charge of Method, with no intention of letting Method die or decline, or even stop top-tier raiding, though he admits it will be a struggle. Still, Method remains in possession of many resources and sponsorships, so a rebuild is by no means out of their reach.
Meanwhile, many of their former teammates have transferred to another server and formed a new guild named “Serenity”, thoroughly throwing off raider rankings. Serenity also intends to fight for World First; if both guilds can get on their feet, then the progress race in Legion may have just gotten much more interesting.
This isn’t happy news for the WoW raiding scene. Warlords of Draenor saw many raiding guilds break apart, and the pessimistic outlook toward top-tier raiding in Sco’s post adds to the overall impression of World of Warcraft’s decline as a game in general. Plus, Method teamed up with Wowhead to post the definitive guides to Mythic WoW raiding. Will they continue to do so, going forward?
In spite of all this, such a break can also be viewed as inevitable. As a heroic raider, I can attest that maintaining a group of just 15 people and accounting for the individual needs and wants of each while progressing through challenging content is incredibly different. I can only imagine what it must be like at the mythic level, with more people and greater challenges.
My hope is that we’ll see both Method and Serenity rise up from the break, better than before, and that competitive, top-tier WoW raiding will live on.
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