As I mentioned before, I received a copy of the Guild Leader’s Handbook to read and review, but Ravious over at Kill Ten Rats beat me to posting about it and says more or less what I would have said. The book is very well written, contains a lot of good information that obviously comes from years of experience, and it sells for the low price of just one sparkle pony.
But this being the home of “the glass is half empty because the players broke it” thinking, I do have a few suggestions. As Ravious points out in his post, the book overall is aimed at a PvE Raiding guild, with the occasional mention of PvP or RP. As someone how has played most major PvP MMOs, I can safely say that a PvP guild has some major differences compared to a PvE guild. The best solution here IMO would be to split the book into two versions or sections, and get someone with more PvP guild experience to cover that aspect. I can’t speak for RP guilds, but my guess is they too would benefit from a more experienced author. This would not require a complete overhaul, as some of the sections do apply to all guilds, but certainly not everything, and the book feels a little incomplete if viewed from the perspective of a PvP guild leader.
The other suggestion I would make is to include some sort of quick reference section for established leaders and officers to go back to. While reading the book I spotted lots of good information and suggestions that would be useful to any existing guild, but without a quick reference you would have to re-read a whole section or even the book itself to really get a good refresher. With this addition the book could be very useful not only for new leaders and officers, but also for any established guild which has an issue pop up or needs a quick check to make sure they have all their bases covered. One of the traps an established guild falls into is complacency, and a monthly rundown of such a checklist would be a very valuable tool.
That said, I’d still recommend the book to anyone who is looking to start up a guild or wants to get better at running/supporting their current one. Thanks to the great writing, reading the entire book front to back is very enjoyable, and even the most experienced leaders are sure to find at least a few things they can use to make improvements.
Thanks to No Starch Press for sending me a copy, and job well done by the author, Scott F. Andrews!
Edit: And yes, the title is troll feed, enjoy!