Tuesday night, I received my formal invitation to join Dominion, followed immediately by a raid invite. My screen filled with green and orange text full of unfamiliar names. Thank goodness for Agamegnome, one familiar name was nice to see. I also recognized Ferg who had run some 5 man PuGs with me during my early 70 days.
I had originally thought that Dominon was 4/5 Hyjal and 3/9 Black Temple. I found out they are only 3/5 Mount Hyjal and 3/9 Black Temple, having gotten their 3rd boss kill in both instances just in the past two weeks. So they are 2 bosses ahead of MK in Hyjal and 3 Bosses ahead in BT. The biggest reason I saw that they are ahead of MK is they put in 4 or 5 nights of Raiding a week to MK's 2 or 3. That's it. These guys are not amazingly more skilled or geared than the MK core.
I ended up going to Mount Hyjal and learning the 2 bosses I hadn't done with Mal Katai. I've got a much longer posts I'm working on about the first raid with them, but it's not ready for publishing yet.
I didn't say much either in chat or in vent.
Part of me doesn't want to make many friends in Dominion. I haven't talked about it much (since it was self inflicted) but I was pained to leave my last two guilds. I deeply miss the friends I had made in both Heroes and Mal Katai. I feel a bit gunshy about making more friends right now in Dominion.
I went through something similar when I joined Mal Katai. I remember that very first night in Raydz Karazhan, being surprised by their vent, which was very different and a bit more 'colorful' than Heroes vent had been. I distinctly remember thinking 'What have you gotten yourself into here, Honors?'
I was a member of Mal Katai nearly two weeks before I ever even ran with Dora, Ryken, Raist, and Celoria.
It wasn't exactly a great start. My very first run with them, they replace me as MT with Ryken's Warrior, Brindall.
But someway, somehow, in the months that followed we downed Gruul with me offtanking Hurtful Strikes and downed pre-nerf Magtheridon with me at the helm as the Main Tank. Then we proceeded to go 5/6 SSC and 3/4 TK, and I came to think of the people behind those pixels as friends, as real to me as any friend I have out here in 'real life'.
Recently Blizzared annouced that every raid in Wrath of the Lich King will be both a 10 man and 25 man. You won't have the 'best' gear unless you do the 25 mans, but you can do every zone, and fight every boss as a 10 man. What I think you will see is a proliferation of micro guilds made up of as little as 10 to 25 people, that will progress through the game on the 10 man track together. That's a kind of guild that would be very very appealing to me.
Edit: You will also see more Guild Alliance type things where two or more of these microguilds bands together to try the 25 man version of whatever 10 mans they are doing.
I've thought more than once about starting a guild just like that. I've already given up on the possibility of the 'best' gear which drops in Sunwell. It doesn't bother me that much. What bothers me is that I'll never set foot in Sunwell 25, never cross swords with Kil'Jaden, never find out what happens to that girl in the crystal above the Sunwell (the one you see in the cut scene in Magister's Terrace).
Right now, my focus is on finishing the original Burning Crusade content and at least getting to ole Illidan before Wrath hits. Illidan was the focus of the whole expansion and the thing is going to come and go and I'll have never even seen him.
Of course, the irony of my first night in Dominion was at the very end of the raid as Vlad (GM of Dominion) pleaded with her raiders not to jump ship to the next more progressed guild on our server.
"Really, guys, I know we went out with you while you were dating that less attractive girl, but please don't leave us for the new hottie that just transferred to our town!"
What I find most interesting is this cross guild recruitment is almost expected at this level of content.