Warning: World of Warcraft post
World of Warcraft was architected as a "sharded" system. There are probably over a hundred servers, each with a unique realm. There are several different types of servers like Role Playing, Player vs Player, Player vs Environment, etc. The rules are slightly different, but the games are essentially the same. The problem is, each world is unique and players can't move between the servers. Therefore, even though World of Warcraft is "the new golf", it very unlikely someone you meet in real life will actually be on a server where you can play together.
The other big problem with this sharded system is that some servers are very underpopulated and some are overpopulated. The server that our guild was on, Khadgar, became overpopulated. We often had to wait in a queue to log in, there was terrible lag and worst of all, new players couldn't create characters on our server. This meant that we couldn't invite real life friends to create characters in our guild. This quickly put a halt to the growth of our guild.
Note to self: When I make a MMORPG to beat World of Warcraft, make sure it is one world like Second Life is.
Recently Blizzard announced that they would be allowing people to transfer characters from Argent Dawn, Bloodhoof, Khadgar, and Zul'jin to a new server called Eitrigg. Transfers would start at 3AM PST on February 1st and end at 3PM PST February 8th. Transfers could only be requested from 3AM to 3PM each day.
A long discussion ensued on the mailing list and in guild chat. Many of us had built relationships with other guilds and other players. On the other hand, many were fed up with the lag, wait and inability to invite our friends into the guild. Several friends from other guilds said that they were ready to move. As I was being wishy washy trying to get consensus, Slashar aka Don Park, pulled what we call a Leeroy Jenkins and move his main character to the new server. It is a one-way transfer. Slashar is probably the most respected officer in the guild and his lead by example started an avalanche and we are now on a one-way street to our new home.
Interestingly, many great players from other guilds have joined the exodus and are joining our guild on the new server. It looks like our guild will be larger and possibly more unified after our move. However, I think several of our core guild members won't be able to leave their friends and family and many of those who are moving will be leaving their best friends. Watching all of the sobbing and heartfelt goodbyes to our friends on Khadgar reminds me of some sort of mass displacement... like a whole clan deciding to move to the New World...
Eitrigg will be closed for new character creation until the transfers are complete. If you are transferring to Eitrigg or want to create a character there and join our guild, let me know. There should be "We Know" people hanging around who you can ask for an invite. We have a healthy batch of low level characters, but also have enough experienced level 60's to probably be running MC shortly. See you there!