A link to World of Warcraft Players Could Be Homeless Forever came across my Twitter feed Tuesday and it got me thinking.
Player and/or Guild housing isn't a new topic in WoW. RPers especially have been asking, screaming, whining and begging for it since Beta. I appreciate the unique challenge it provides to developers and I can completely understand why Blizzard has shied away from it. And I agree with the statement J.Allen Brack makes in the article about there not being a need for player housing beyond just saying, "Oh yeah, we have housing too." Player housing has no relevance on gameplay in WoW (though, if it helped clean up whoreshire, that's more than enough reason IMO!) and there are plenty of other games where people can buy and decorate houses if that's what they're into. Guild housing on the other hand, is something I'd love to see and I think the new guild perks system is the perfect vehicle for it.
True, guilds, and players, can, and do, use some of the spaces already available in the game world as guild halls. The main drawback to this, especially on a high population server, is one of supply and demand. Or as they say in real estate, location, location, location! The good spots are popular and therefore in high demand. Sometimes you can share a space with another guild or two quite amicably. Sometimes not. Guild housing that's specific to the guild and only accessible to guild members would solve that. How great would be it to have guild meetings at your guildhall and not have random players wander by and interrupt/interfere? True, the drawback is you couldn't hold rp events at your guildhall for other players if it's only accessible to guild members, but it's a drawback I'd be willing to live with. After all, if I want to host a server-wide rp event, I can still do it in a public location in-game.
As far as where such housing should be or what it should look like... well, I could ramble on about what I'd like to see, but it would be what I'd like. I'm sure each player would like to see something different, which is one of those challenges that has probably had the devs tossing in the towel each time housing comes up at a meeting. Still, I'd love to see Guild housing introduced as a guild perk option sometime in the future. That's an objective I'd definitely be willing to dedicate guild time to unlocking and spend guild gold on purchasing.