Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Managing a Guild Vault

If you’ve read any WoW news site or been on the forums, you’re probably aware that patch 2.3 is scheduled to be released on November 13th.  Knowing Blizzard and also that it’s only a week away, that’s a pretty firm date, unless testing goes horribly wrong.  I’m pretty excited about it myself, but I thought I’d start addressing some of the side effects that I’ve anticipate thus far.

Today, I’m looking at the Guild Vault again.  First, the facts: There are 6 tabs that can be purchased by a Guild Leader.  They have a progressive cost, just like the extra bank slots do.  The cost at the time of this writing is 1g, 10g, 100g, 1000g, 2500g, and 5000g.  Each slot can hold 98 non-soulbound items (one of the bigger differences between Banks and Vaults, IMO, besides the whole shared thing).  Each tab has its own permissions of who can see it, take items out of it, and how many items/stacks can be taken out based on rank.  Each tab can also be named and an icon associated with it (default is the red question mark).  Each tab also has its own log of which items are deposited and withdrawn and by whom.

The money of the vault is its own separate permission group.  Again, based on rank, you can specify how much gold a player can take out per day.  There is also a log identical to that of the item tabs, so you can see where the money is going.  Related to this, when each guildie goes to repair their armor, there is now an option to repair your armor with funds from the Guild Vault.  When I last tested this, that money would appear on the log, but I believe it would go against the cap for that rank.

So, what should one store in the Vault and why?  Also, who do you give access to?  Finally, how do you keep the coffers full?

There’s probably not a lot of armor that’s going to be stored here that’s extremely valuable.  In anticipation for future instances, we have a lot of resist gear in our current guild bank.  Most of them are random greens that we’ve picked up here and there.  You’ll have your occasional epic BoE; but for raiders, you’ll find better gear equipment on the bosses you down.  You’ll more than likely be storing enchanting materials, but other tradeskill materials would be ideal as well.  (Primals anyone?)  Since we’ve had a few months with TBC, you’ll also store a decent array of rep items as well.  Don’t need that Aldor rep anymore? (Just hit exalted last night, btw.)  Send those Marks to the Guild Vault.  Already have that semi-rare non-BoP recipe or pattern?  Send it over.  Assuming you have the space, this may be ideal spots for it.

Some other great items to put here are potions, elixirs, flasks, and food.  As I’ve mentioned, I’ve been skilling up my fishing.  I now sit at a skill of 315, and with a cheap lure, am able to catch most things in Terrokar Forest, the lower portion.  In the loot tables for those waters are the Golden Darters which can be cooked into Golden Fish Sticks.  (Increases healing by 44.)  While these sell for about a gold and a half each, I’ve been divvying them out to the different healers in our guild.  The Vault would make a perfect place for those.  Also, all those Apexis Shards that you don’t know what to do with can be converted into the Unstable Flasks for Gruul’s Lair, and then put in the Guild Vault.  Plus… almost everyone (/acknowledges Feral Druids) can use health and mana pots, so this is a good place to share them as well.

A lot of these items are the same ones that have been in question for years with the current guild bank situation (level 1 alts controlled by Guild Leaders).  But the biggest change will be with the gold.

First off, I think this is a great equalizer for tanks.  For years, they’ve had to endure the higher repair costs.  At one point, I thought a patch equalized the difference between repairing plate and cloth, but it still seems that I pay way less, even fully red, then my warrior friends.  Taking all the money from the same pot, will equalize that burden.  So, even though I technically will have to pay more, I think it’s a very fair idea.

But there’s also the possibility that somebody might take advantage of this.  Maybe it’s that guy who’s raiding with another guild because his schedule changed, and he never contributes anything to the Guild Vault, but yet his repairs are always from the Guild Vault.  Maybe it’s the girl that’s in Azeroth greens and running around in Gruul’s Lair.  (Who let that hypothetical person in the raid anyway?)  You’ll almost always have people that will participate more than others.  Some may spend a lot more in repair costs, but they might also be the ones that are contributing more.  

How do you raise the funds for the Guild Vault and how do you keep them there?  This is the part that I’m finding tricky.  You can claim all raid loot as Guild Property to be doled out by some loot system (DKP or whatnot), and sell all items to go towards the Vault.  You can tax your guild by a weekly/monthly or per instance amount.  If you have seed money, you can have somebody that’s good at playing the AH help to offset some of this.  Or do you hire a Chinese Gold Farmer to keep everything going.  (I like the last option, but haven’t been able to hire one yet.)

Whichever way things are handled, this will add another level of depth to running a guild.  Let me know of any other suggestions you may have.  (And I’m accepting applications for a Gold Farmer for Primogeniture.  Nationality is not important.)


Galoheart said...

I just created a 1 man Alt Guild to have access to guild bank. The only person in it will be just my Alt Banker and guild will be central bank deposit for all my alt characters.

Currently i have stufff stored among all my alts so just having one big bank to hold everything will be much easier. Also mean i can store less usefull stuff on my main character and have more room for soulbound items thats still valuable to keep. But i have my 1 Alt toon guild bank, i'm sure that will e indeed popular and your going to see new guild charters everywhere soon.

DadGuy said...

I think you shouldn't have repair costs go through the guild bank. Otherwise you invite abuse. High end raid tanking gets expensive and so does learning new content... but that's about it. If you can't manage to keep enough money to keep yourself repaired by gathering a few greens and the grey loot on a run then you're in trouble anyhow. With the rise of daily quests, repair costs are even more trivial.

Guild $$ should be for guild progression, but I think it's way too much hassle to try and manage everyone's repair cost and such until you get some serious cash in there. That said, you should be starting out with a bit of a nest egg. :P

The repair costs are not worth your time. =)

Good luck.

Leiandra said...

I think there will be a lot of 1-man guilds. I know a number of people that have already set them up. I thought of discussing that, but kinda left that out of the scope of this post.

Yeah... i wrestle with the repair costs, Dadguy. I understand the headache, but I keep going back to: Why did Blizzard put it in the game then?

Amava said...

I like the idea of funding repair costs, but perhaps only for certain people (namely the tanks). As a hunter, and a dual gatherer, I have a very nice ability to make gold, between grinding mobs for drops, and also protecting myself against larger numbers of mobs that are hanging around a herb or mineral node. But I cannot survive an instance without my friends in plate armor, who have a tougher time farming since they spec and equip in a way that makes it tough for them. But then again, I personally tip my tanks, so this won't really change my position on helping out those who help me.

I do see the opportunity for abuse, so perhaps they can implement a control, such as certain ranks in the guild can hand out Repair Tokens. Then your raid leader or guild leader can give a select few tanks a repair token at the beginning of an instance run, and it is redeemable for a single guild-funded repair. And of course, all token handouts would be logged like the other stuff, to help limit abuse of handing out tokens to a close knit group of friends who aren't doing the tanking.

For generating guild income, two possibilities pop into my head. The first is a looting option that just counts the guild bank as a party member and sends a portion of the coins from kills into the bank, similar to how the money is divided up among party members. Maybe there's 3 options for the leader to select from: nothing to guild, guild treated as equal to party members, guild gets 50% and party members divide the rest. The other idea for guild income would be a fee to start an instance. Although this is very easy for a guild to do procedurally (meaning the leaders don't send the invite until the gold has been deposited), it would be cool if the leader could do the invites and then flag the instance with a guild fee that the Blizz user interface actually enforces you to click to accept the payment before it lets you enter the instance. That might be a little sticky though.