A few things lately have made me as sad as hearing that <Paragon>, the old World of Warcraft guild I used to raid in and one of the best guilds of all time, decided to stop raiding for good. Not only has the guild given so much to me personally, but they’ve also left an indelible mark on the World of Warcraft raiding community. The creative, world first hungry Finn’s always did things their own way both inside the game but also showed incredible sportsmanship towards the community as a whole. Needless to say, I’m extremely proud I have had the privilege to play with these extraordinary gentlemen. It leaves a hole in my heart seeing <Paragon> being reduced to nothing but a memory as of yesterday.
<Paragon> has shaped the world first race as much as the world first race has shaped <Paragon>’s players (including me) during the seven and half years the guild had existed. The legacy of the guild is very visible in today’s PVE scene and the legacy will continue to live on long in the world first race.
Below are a few things <Paragon> introduced to the raiding scene first, and by it changed it forever:
- Epic kill videos – you saw and especially heard it in <Paragon> first. Our old raider Maeil started with (at that time) very traditional trance videos, such as Professor Putricide video, but ended up switching his music picks to ones from epic movies. There are so many great videos that have been published on <Paragon>’s Youtube Channel and my personal favourite of all time is Al’akir (even when I didn’t end up playing in the kill). Nowadays the community gets to enjoy epic kill videos from many guilds who have ended up following Paragon>’s lead. There are no video editors in the World of Warcraft PVE race scene who don’t know <Paragon>’s videos and their style.
- Split alt raiding. Whether you like it or not <Paragon> was the first guild to start using alts to gear up for the harder bosses, and at that time, scout for tactics. When Trial of the Grand Crusader was introduced in Wrath of the Lich King with limited attempts per week, we decided to artificially get more tries by practicing the bosses first on our alts. Later split alt raiding has grown and evolved and nowadays it means that the people who want to raid on the bleeding edge need to play around 5 characters to be able to funnel gear to the mains / characters that need to be used at the hard bosses. Of course we didn’t know this would happen when I entered Trial of the Grand Crusader with my druid tank Xate 5 and half years ago, but that’s where it all started.
- Mythic raiding: 10 and 25-man races were combined in Warlords of Draenor. I don’t claim that <Paragon> was solely responsible for forcing Blizzard’s hand to combine 10 and 25-man brackets, but the disturbance in the force <Paragon> created by raiding whole MoP in 10-man while the rest of the competition played in 25-man certainly played a role here. No more does the community have to fight over whether “the fight was easier/harder in 10/25-man”.
- Extra: Class stacking: Perhaps <Paragon> wasn’t the first to do it, but we did it with the most style. *meow*
- Extra extra: All the awesome memes and memories this guild has created by playing creative have made the history of world first race a fun one. And yes, balls, <Paragon> has them!
So not only has <Paragon> shaped the game and the raiding scene in a profound way, but it has also shaped me as a person and a player. Nowadays I raid with my casual guild, but my foundation in this game, and also in most of my adult life lies in playing in <Paragon>. The (at the time) best guild in the world with the most dedicated, fun, and inspiring players I’ve ever met.
During the time I spent in <Paragon> I got to become better as a player but also travel the world, make new friends, and take my first steps in the path that later became my profession. But the most important thing was that I got to play the game I loved at its highest level.
I got to play the race to world first with the best.
Now I feel sorry for the other guilds out there, since as Illidan so elegantly put it, “The Huntress is nothing without the hunt, you are nothing without me.” Don’t get me wrong, new challengers will appear but never again will anyone get to play against <Paragon>. And that is breaking my heart.