As of the writing of this article, I am the leader of the free company on Moogle known as The Nirvana Company and the raid leader for a group known as Taco Wipe Night but as of publishing this article I have retired as the leader of The Nirvana Company (now The Moogle Company) and here I am going to explain to other guild leaders out there when its time to move on.
For a bit of history, I was the leader of the free company from when it was founded back seven years ago with two other people who didn’t really want much to do with running things but the idea behind the free company was to create a social group where new players could join, learn the game, make a few friends and then move onto another free company – in other words, it was always meant to be a free company you wouldn’t stay in while a small core group would do merc runs to earn Gil (thus why it is named The Nirvana Company).
Over time, however, we gained new members (some who are still here to this day!) and we grow as a free company and the focus of the group slowly changed as we become more of a social group rather than a training guild. It was also at this time I created a raid group with a couple of members within the free company and then recruited the rest with pugs that we got during our weekly raid sessions.
This raid group mostly stayed together for the first two tiers of The Binding Coil of Bahamut but the group split up during the Final Coil of Bahamut due to the first major drama that happened within my free company. While it is not something I am going to discuss here I think this was the first time I felt like a free company leader the following …
I don’t think I actually want to be here.
Looking at that quote as an outsider it honestly sounds quite horrible but I think it was much more to do with the fact I just wanted to play the parts of the game I enjoy such as raiding, play with my friends and not worry so much about what is going on with everything else – in other words, I just wanted to play the game.
Nonetheless, Heavensward came along and with it, the free company grew. It was at this stage I was still very active with recruitment, sorting out events and more with help of my overseers and it was the high point in my opinion of the free company where it had the most activity and such. It is also at this point I stopped raiding for most of the expansion after my new raid group I tried to rebuild could not get past A2S.
As the expansion came to a close with the final tier of Alexender being released I started to make a new raid group which came to be informally named Taco Wipe Night with most of the core members being in the group as of the time of publishing this article. While this was happening the free company kept growing and growing but I didn’t really feel that happy about it and felt something wrong about it – after all a growing friendly free company is something all leaders should be happy about, right?
I do promise I am getting somewhere with all of this but I do feel a brief history is something that will help explain later on but after Heavensward came Stormblood and this is where I feel like a free company leader I lost all interest.
Stormblood expansion is an expansion I outright hated and didn’t even try to hide the fact but things went on. The free company slowly stopped growing as I actively no longer kept recruitment and kept it strictly to a friend of friends invite system with the idea that it would keep the drama away and create a network of players that knew each other. If this worked or not I can not say but the free company kept clicking over while I carried on having fun with my raid group and kept progressing although sadly we never killed two of the last bosses I did get my Diamond Robe of Healing.
Finally came Shadowbringers and it was an expansion I loved and sure while there wasn’t much going on content-wise my raid group started to crack on with every single tier and start clearing content and I couldn’t be happier with the game as heck we even started to look at doing ultimate and that Thyrus Ultima still had my name on it.
When it came to The Nirvana Company however I mostly left it on autopilot with letting the overseers do their own thing. It is sadly on this time that I stopped popping on Discord often (it felt far more like an expectation rather than if I wanted to do so) and started to play the game my own way as in doing what I wanted to do and when I wanted to do so. I kept playing with my brother and stopped playing with people I felt obligated to play with and I found myself enjoying the game once again but I still had the feeling in the back of my mind about leaving my free company – after all if I keep telling people to leave a group if you are no longer having fun then why shouldn’t I take the same advice?
With a brief history now in your mind, it is time to go into a bit more detail about why I came to this reasoning and why I decided to do so in the end. If you clicked the link above that jumped right here then here is the TL;DR – my free company kept growing but I felt like it wasn’t my place to be.
I am not talking about responsibility in making sure things happen as I am an insanely careful administrator and one of the best things I can do is make sure the backend of things are running smoothly but rather the responsibility of having to play with everyone and to do everything with everyone.
This may sound confusing but take an extreme trial for example. It may be myself overthinking it and I am quite sure if someone within my former free company was reading this now would disagree with me but I felt I had to be involved in everything otherwise it felt like I was ignoring people. This ultimately made me feel like I was unable to do things on my own time.
Time sadly is always a reason that sucks when it comes to running any group but due to how things started to work out during Shadowbringers I was unable to be able to attend the free companies events such as Mappy Monday (one that I used to really enjoy) but also unable to pop on Discord that often and when I could it was quite busy and felt out of place which leaves me to I think the main reasoning why I retired from the role.
Change of direction
This may sound confusing but the free company had a change of direction which I did not really want it to go down and that was when the free company started to grow in size. As I wrote about earlier I originally wanted a small free company but it kept growing away from the size I wanted. It may surprise you here but I am not really much of a socialite and while I have no issues chatting to people, making friends and such but I always have preferred my own company and a growing free company went against it.
Ultimately, and no fault of anyone really, I felt a stranger to my own free company and when this happens it is something that is hard to change. Nowhere would I say it is a bad thing but it did stop me from popping onto Discord much during the limited time I had and it felt if you weren’t on Discord you were excluded from what was happening as no one chatted within FC chat.
This is the last major reason why I decided to step down and that is I lost interest in Final Fantasy XIV during Heavensward and Stormblood which mostly was due to the events around raiding and whenever I wanted to take a break (mostly during Heavensward when I wasn’t raiding or after I completed a tier) but while I was free company leader I couldn’t really do that and thus I could not get a break when I wanted to do so.
I am sure some people reading this will be asking why I didn’t let the overseers take over for a while when I wanted a break and it is something I did think over but I felt I needed to be able to have an out otherwise I truly could never really have a break or quit the game.
Was it worth it?
Now we come to the part after speaking about why I stepped down and when I talk about my experiences as a free company leader and what you should keep an eye out for in case you feel the same way.
Yes, I did enjoy being the leader of The Nirvana Company and I enjoyed playing and chatting with everyone in it and will carry on doing so until the day I leave The Moogle Company and beyond. What I disliked was staying as the free company leader and should I have dropped out when I felt I should have in the first place I imagine things would be different.
To answer the question from the start when you should step down? The second you start thinking about it you likely already made your choice. I would recommend not stalling as honestly, it works out better for everyone and not everything will always work out as you hope. I don’t regret my time as a leader but I also feel I would have enjoyed myself much more to have stepped back and just focused on what I enjoyed doing within Final Fantasy XIV.
To everyone from The Nirvana Company or The Moogle Company, it has been fun!