Guild of the Week
Black Parades [死人死 死人死]
The Black Parades [死人死 死人死] came together in October 2006 from a bunch of friends in Heroes' Ascent. A few of them decided their current guilds just weren't up to par, and they thought it would be cool to have their own. Thus, Black Parades was born. Though the guild's members have only played together in Guild Wars, they are now branching out into other games.
The philosophy of Black Parades rests on a foundation of respect. Anytime anybody treats Black Parades with respect, the guild reciprocates with an equal measure of respect. That said, it reserves a level of distaste for hypocrisy—it holds no tolerance for anyone who runs a certain build in Heroes' Ascent while mocking others for running that very same build.
As for play style, the guild seeks a dual-pronged approach, struggling against the meta while at the same time running the meta to try to better understand how it works. Alternating between metagame builds and anti-meta builds helps the entire guild develop a deeper comprehension of the game. They emphasize that a good balance between the two is essential.
In all seriousness, members declare that nobody sane would want to join them. This explains a lot about them and defines their recruiting policy. They only accept friends of the guild and don't actively recruit in any way, shape, or form. Thus, there aren't really any requirements for joining.
Collectively, when asked why the guild chose to play Guild Wars, they answered:
"Because it had the words 'Guild' and 'Wars'...how perfect is that?"
The guild's current 19 members can vary, sometimes dropping to 15, but usually staying closer to 20. They are a close-knit group and remain fairly static to maintain that closeness. This atmosphere also generates strong trust, which allows them to seamlessly move with the metagame, as they trust each other to try new builds. Over time, members even see themselves growing mustaches or afros, possibly as a guild bonding activity.
PvP Game Discussion
The main build that the Black Parades guild is known for is Zergway, and rightly so (they claim to have started it). The current iteration of Zergway arose from a combination of many, many failed runs. When Nightfall first came out, members wanted to use the new classes to their fullest extent. Soon, they figured out that the original idea of "Fear Me!" worked well with Dervishes on the altar because the AoE scythe attacks quickly charged the adrenaline needed for "Fear Me!". They moved to the Steady Stance Warrior later for more consistent pressure. When Black Parades first made the build, it used a standard two-Monk backline, until it became apparent that the lone Paragon had enough healing power to keep the team up (their Monks were sitting there twiddling their thumbs). After that, it was just minor tweaks to skills and concept to make it counter the metagame as needed. Reliable fame earning ensued.
Like most serious PvP guilds, the guild uses voice chat almost all the time. It's not uncommon to see someone in voice chat who isn't even currently playing Guild Wars. They also listen to music when they play "...just because...we can." Other than that, all vocalized criticism is directed at one specific person, but they make sure to never yell and to always keep conversations civil. This lets people know exactly who did what wrong, and how to improve on it.
For specific tactics, the situation is more important than anything, including character profession. When spiking, the guild sometimes leave the infuser until last if it feel it's more important to spike out the offense to relieve pressure. But if there is no pressure, the guild might take down the infuser first for more leisurely spiking. Although the guild's members know what needs to be accomplished, they rarely ever go about it the standard way. They may just let a relic runner go right through them to draw opposing Monks forward to try and protect the runner. After spiking out the Monks, they turn on the relic runner on the return trip.
The guild has encountered plenty of teams who will play not to win, but to make sure Black Parades loses, so it very commonly finds itself in sticky situations. Some situations the guild sees coming and can trick the other teams into fighting each other while picking one side off (as is the case for most unorganized "ganks"). Sometimes, however, it doesn't see such situations arising. The guild's priceless wisdom: Tombs dirt doesn't taste very good :-/
Black Parades plays a mixture of HA and GvG, although it spends more time in Heroes' Ascent. The guild stresses to everyone playing with them that the guild hall itself doesn't matter...it's how you use it. Black Parades uses Imperial Isle, though, for the ability to body-block gankers inside the base.
The guild employs dual strat callers, something that many others guilds avoid. One caller focuses solely on single targets, while another watches what the opposing team does as a whole. Together, they combine for a deadly combo, and they serve to let each person on the team know which opponent their skills would best be used on.
Members say it's a memorable experience anytime they beat someone who judges them based solely on their past builds, and not who they are as players and a guild. "Nothing is more satisfying than ripping apart a team that has insulted you."
Handle: Accept I Am Pheryel
Location: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Preferred Character: The guild plays many different builds. Blood Spike, Zergway (we invented it), and Ritspike are ones we are mostly known for. In these builds, my job is target calling/strategy calling. I and some others are also responsible of putting our own little twists on builds already out there to give them Black Parades' charm.
Gaming Background: EverQuest, EQ2, Dark Age of Camelot, City of Heroes, City of Villains, Neverwinter Nights, as well as good old tabletop D&D and Warhammer. All these things help in my experience in learning how to beat other teams and change our plan of attack on a moment's notice.
Position in the Guild: Leader
Why I Joined: I created Black Parades in the hopes of make a gaming community. Currently we have a solid core of 12 members that trust each other as if we were family. Also we are in the process of making this community extend to the whole alliance without singling out any side of Guild Wars; we have core GvG, HA, and PvE guilds in the alliance. Not to mention that every guild in the alliance brings its own touch to the table. Overall, I just wanted to be able to have diversity in a large-scale community.
Handle: Angelic Loki
Location: Iowa, USA
Preferred Character: Monk/Mesmer or Necromancer/Mesmer. I'm a big fan of the degen Necromancer. I think it's fun to leave a foe so crippled that he can't possibly hurt you, only to move on to the next target and just watch as that crippled foe helplessly falls. Reaper's Mark and Wither are two of my favorite Hexes, although I enjoy using Spiteful Spirit as well.
Gaming Background: I mostly play MMORPGs, although you may find me in an occasional frag fest in F.E.A.R.
Position in the Guild: Officer
Why I Joined: Because I felt like it, and Pheryel paid me $50. It's a pyramid scheme. (Not really. But hey, that'd be fun.)
Handle: Stigmata I
Location: Ohio, USA
Preferred Character: Necromancer primary. I've played just about anything involving Necromancers but love the spike-based builds the most. I like the satisfaction of quick kills in HA and can usually be found target calling in some sort of caster spike. Tactics and target calling are very different here. Though most groups prefer one person to do all the work and get the credit, we split it amongst ourselves—one target and one strat caller is usually all that's needed, while the rest are doing what they are supposed to do to help support a very well-rounded team.
Gaming Background: Mainly on PC it was FPSs for me: MechWarrior 2, 3, 4, Counter Strike, Rainbow Six, and so on. A gun and trigger was the thing for me. Now it's a spell and a target, lol.
Position in the Guild: Officer and one of the founding members along with Pheryel and Loki
Why I Joined: The guild I was in was mainly PvE-based, and I wanted to expand my options to the fullest for this game. That meant PvP and GvG, which are both exciting and never boring to any extent.
Preferred Character: My primary characters are probably Ritualists and Rangers, but I'll play anything and like it. Currently, I've just started to learn how to Monk efficiently. I've also been playing with bringing back F/C air spiker to RA and having great success earning over 10 gladiator points on it.
Gaming Background: This is one of my first RPGs. I played a little bit of StarCraft before but not much. I'm an ex-PvE-er, but I've since disowned it to fully pursue PvP.
Position in the Guild: I'm an officer currently, hoping to become a core member (GvGer).
Why I Joined: I had an ex-guildie in there, and I was looking for a good PvP guild and wanted to get into GvG, which I can't wait to start doing.
Handle: Destructive Solace
Location: New York, NY
Preferred Character: Well, I am generally a midline player and am equally proficient at all professions thereof, the Mesmer being my favorite for its strategic nuances. Lately I've been doing a lot of Ritualist spike, quite successfully as it were, which has really opened my eyes to the Ritualist world. When it came to the Zergway days, however, I usually played the Warrior/Monk infuser, as it was indeed a test of one's skill to coordinate its many and major responsibilitiesI like a challenge.
Gaming Background: No background before Guild Wars...does chess count? However, all I really do nowadays is Heroes' Ascent and GvG, mostly the former.
Position in the Guild: Officer and Ivy League know-it-all
Why I Joined: To correct Pheryel's spelling.
Handle: Mr Fantanastic
Preferred Character: I play Monk most frequently because I stink at it and it's fun for me to get yelled at.
Gaming Background: I started off playing PvE but I now play PvP. I have played Diablo 2 and Warcraft 3: The Frozen Throne.
Position in the Guild: Officer baby
Why I Joined: I joined the guild because my best friend in Guild Wars, Heather, joined.
Handle: Crazy Kalibanov
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Preferred Character: I play anything in the midline or backline, but I guess my favorite is playing Mesmer. There's something deeply satisfying about shut-down, interrupts, Energy denial, and just spreading hate around.
Gaming Background: My background is RPGs, both PvE and PvP. But mostly, I enjoy PvP. PvE gets repetitive, and I get bored with the same old, same old. PvP never gets old.
Position in the Guild: Member
Handle: Pcp or Fatal, more know me as Pcp
Preferred Character: For HA I prefer to play more of the offensive types (i.e., Shadow Prison Assassin, or BoA if you want to go by the meta). Also, I prefer to play the Ritualist with Icy Shackles in our build for HA. In GvG, I play a lot of professions, mostly frontline or midline, never backline. For frontline I play Assassin or Warrior, and for midline I play anything from Necromancer Hex pressure to Burning Arrow Ranger. For strategy and play style, I'm usually on the defense, I like to see how the other team plays rather than give away my strategy from the start. I usually make tactical decisions based on what the other team is running and how they play it.
Gaming Background: I'm definitely a PvPer. I'm trying to do the whole PvE thing when I'm bored, but I just can't, lol. Other games I played before and during Guild Wars would be: World of Warcraft, Warcraft 3: The Frozen Throne, Counter Strike 1.6 and Source, Battlefield 2, and BF 2142.
Position in the Guild: Currently only a member
Why I Joined: I joined The Black Parades because I love to play with the people in the guild. I've known Pheryel (the leader) for quite some time, and I recently left tQ (no comment), so I decided, "why not ask?" and sure enough I got an invite.
Handle: L L A Z I, Try My Heartest, but most just call me Heather
Location: Ohio, USA
Preferred Character: Casters only, not enough testosterone to enjoy any melee. You'll most often find me on a Monk keeping Health bars full, and sometimes a Mesmer taking away Energy, a Necro pressuring with hexes, or an Ele making designs with wards.
Gaming Background: Started video games at an early age. All it took was one jump on a goomba in NES, and I was addicted. For PC games, I've mainly done MMORPGs, starting with Dark Age of Camelot sixish years ago then moving onto GW after playing in the beta.
Position in the Guild: Officer of Fluff
Why I Joined: I got pyramid schemed.
Handle: Ankou Sidhe
Location: Australia (yes, koalas smell)
Preferred Character: Paragon or Ranger, I love the versatility of both classes. I also enjoy Mesmer; there's nothing better than camping on a Monk knowing that you're causing that player some serious frustration.
Gaming Background: Mostly FPS games like Wolfenstein, dabbled a little in Neverwinter Nights before Guild Wars was released. Been Guild Wars since, don't have time for another!
Position in the Guild: Officer
Why I Joined: Because Loki paid me $50...and I got a free set of steak knives ;)
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