So Deathwing on Heroic Mode was brought down recently by a Korean Guild who has consistently scored in the top 50 or so. This prompted myself and buddy to have a discussion over the nature of getting those world first kills. You see, here’s the thing, Paragon isn’t a guild. I say this in the sense that Paragon and guilds like it (I use them as an example, there of course other names out there) aren’t actually a group of people working together. They approach WoW in much the same way that BP approaches an Oil deposit. If you get into the guild, you aren’t part of the raid group, you’re a tool to be used to reach a goal. The will of the individual is sacrificed in name of getting to the end goal (which in their case is getting world first). That’s something I don’t think these folks getting frustrated with their 25 man groups have to realize is that Paragaon isn’t 25 people, it’s hundreds and only 25 get to make that World First kill.
These guilds switch out and change their strategy by the fight. Firstly they only recruit top-tier players, and then they use them as pawns towards their ultimate goal. I realize I may come off sounding distasteful of this approach, but I want to make it clear that I am simply pointing out how they get things done. Look for instance at the Heroic Nefarion Kill at the start of cataclysm. To do this, the top guilds realized that Bleeds were having a heavy effect on Nefarion do to the way his buffs worked. To make the fight go faster, the top-tier guilds simply brought in a ton of feral cats. Because Feral Cat dps is primarily composed of bleeds, it accentuated the damage being done. And this isn’t people just switching over to alts, we’re talking about people sitting on the sidelines being called in to adjust the fight as demanded.
This allows them to fine tune their strategy fight by fight, calling in only the best players. Now yes, once they have that world first, they likely cycle in loads of alts to get them up to par, but the core raid group is fluid and dynamic. They’re less guilds and more corporations using the players as means to an end. So if you’re 25 man guild is struggling, that’s fine. To most people, that is a lot of resources to devote to a problem.
Beyond that, groups like Paragon also are able to devote time to the Project like WoW. For them it becomes less a game and more a job. To raise money you have a publicly available website, or advertising on youtube. On top of that, Blizzard contacts these guilds to handle beta testing of end game content, which while I have never seen any official channels on, is likely not a free sort of arrangement. Take for instance the Blizzcon, where the big name guilds are called in to do what amounts to entertainment.
This allows these guilds to turn WoW into a full time job, spending likely well over 40 hours doing dailies, grinding dungeons, leveling alts, PvP, and raiding.
So there’s you trick to raiding success. You want to be in that world first group? You treat WoW more like a job than a game. It’s not just an objective, it’s a full blown business. It goes above and beyond hobby and even to a degree past professional player, all the way to a 80 hour a week job demanding peak performance and what probably amounts to a healthy amount of finger cramps.