Thursday, April 7, 2011

G is For Guild

In the city, depending on the time frame, guilds are very powerful entities in and of themselves. They can often control whole swathes of the trade industry that they are tied to. They control the training, the secrets, and the access to the finer materials that each guild is known for.

But how does that tie into gaming?

In Paizo's evolution of the 3.5 engine, Pathfinder, the very name itself is that of a group of adventurers that seek to share knowledge and information about the world around them.

Sometimes the Guild membership has enough perks that players seek it out. Other times the players are either just so good at their job or just so independent, that they balk at the idea of joining a guild. The most famous type of area for guilds this shows up for is Thieves Guilds. For example, the Twain, Fafrd and Gray Mouser, are independents who have crushed the thieves guild in the past. The Order of the Stick has it's own member, Haley, who is a former member who went off to find a bigger and better destiny. In the web comic Weregeek, the latest storyline involves one of the rogue characters who is not a member of the local thieves guild.

In the Clone Wars animated series, season two had a subtitle of Rise of the Bounty Hunters due to the wide variety of characters and episodes that featured bounty hunters. In the comics that cross over into the same time frame, the Star Wars Omnibus Menance Revealed, showcases Aurra Sing, among others. Aurra Sing is so good that when the bounty hunter guild needs a rogue brought in, they call her.

Guilds, like unions, have their own dues, their own codes, and their own methods of handling things. Players might find themselves working for the a guild or against it. Depending on how tight a guild's control over things are, there might be competition from other guilds that do similar work as one guild seeks to expand at the expense of another's power.