I have written follow-ups of several guild parties I have hosted this year… but how do you plan an awesome guild party?
1) A REASON TO PARTY/THEME. Not that you need a reason to have a guild party, but you can have a theme or schedule it around an event or silly holiday. This can spur other ideas for contests and outfits. Example: At our guild summer party, everyone had to try and pick out WOW clothing that looked like something you would wear to a beach party.
-Check out these previous posts for more seasonal party info:
2) PICK A DATE AND TIME. You want to pick a date when the most guildies will be online and be available to attend. Do not schedule against any other guild events or Blizzard events. Even something like Brewfest will take away people from your event. Also, allot an hour for the party, but tell people they can come and go as they need to.
3) PICK A LOCATION. You want to pick a location that is convenient for everyone to get to if you don’t have mass summons. It doesn’t have to be just a bar in Stormwind, however. There are lots of cool nooks in the other cities as well, or go right outside a city. If you have mass summons though you can go about anywhere now.
4) MAKE DATE KNOWN. I first schedule the event on the minimap calendar. I also put it as an event on our guild facebook page. People can sign up at either place. However, you always have the people who won’t sign up or don’t check these places… so you have to talk the event up as well in guild chat, etc to make sure everyone knows about it.
5) COME UP WITH A MAJOR ATTRACTION. This is kind of optional, but you want something that will attract or be an incentive for people to attend the party. For some parties, I have crafted an RP outfit for everyone who signs up to come (not necessarily going to guarantee they show up though). The last guild party I did, we announced that we would be doing a contest giving away 310 riding, plus we went and did the whale shark kill/achievement after the party. This got a lot of people to come that usually don’t do the parties.
6) PLAN CONTESTS OR PARTY DETAILS. Depending on how complex you plan on the activities to be for the party, this planning can start 1-2 weeks ahead of time. I usually wait until the week of to get an idea how many are coming. Then I plan some basic WOW contests like a tonk-a-thon or something to do at the party like Duel the Guildmaster, etc. Also decide if you will have prizes and what they will be.
7) BOOZE. Guildies will demand or expect booze. You will be busy hosting, so assign someone else/other people to bring kegs or hand out booze that can be bought at vendors beforehand.
8 ) PLAN PARTY HAPPY ITEMS. You can do this at the beginning of the party or after it is over. It is kind of more fun to do it beforehand though. You can give out stacks of fireworks for cheap happies or go more expensive and give out Mysterious Fortune Cards or Origami Beetles. Again, have someone else hand out these items.
9) ARRIVE EARLY AND INVITE TO RAID. I get to the location first always. I then start a raid group with everyone who is coming. That way the party chat can be separate from guild chat, but you can also see everyone who is in your group, remove them if they go offline or leave, etc.
10) HOST YOUR PARTY! Make sure events are flowing smoothly, but give people time to drink, dance, and talk too. Just make sure everyone has fun – that is the most important part!