A Modern Guide on Guilds!
Neopets is more than just a site with cute Pets, fun games, and collecting almost anything that one’s heart desires. Neopets allows space for building community. While the Neoboards are a great place for people to connect and interact with each other, guilds are a special place where you can find even more like-minded people. When I made my account back in 2001, my guild was one of the main reasons I logged in every, single day. I made friends in my guild that I’m still in touch with to this day. Coming back from a very long hiatus, I didn’t feel quite as connected until I had joined a guild again – and I ended up co-founding an updated version of my original guild with members from that guild (which became inactive some time ago).
This brings me to the next point. Nowadays, guilds are very different from the early years of Neopets. There was more variety and randomness to many of the guilds before, which is what makes looking at some of the old guilds rather fun now. However, these days, there are fewer guilds but many of them are organized based on a particular focus. Alas, I give you an overview of the landscape of Guilds in Neopia in 2023.
Account Improvement (AI) Guilds
Typically these guilds will help members with tasks such as obtaining new secret avatars, training Battledome Pets, buying collectibles such as stamps, and earning game trophies. Some guilds focus on certain activities and break into smaller groups within the guild to focus on a specific type of account improvement goal.
Neopet Activity or Neo-Related (NR) Guilds
Guilds in this category can overlap with AI guilds, but they are typically more focused on a particular aspect of Neopets, such as Pet adoption/trading, Battledome, NC trading/customisation, restocking, and roleplaying. NR activities are quite common in these guilds but utilized across all other categories. Examples of NR activities include 1 NP auctions and customisation contests.
Themed events, pages, and discussions on an identified fandom – such as from a movie, show, book, musicians, celebrity, and other cultural phenomenon. These were particularly popular in the early years of Neopets, though the variety and percentage of these themes aren’t as common as they used to be.
Identity or Community-based Guilds
These are rooted in building community with similar folks and really take advantage of their guild message board. Some examples include LGBTQ+ folks, particular age groups, language or location-based, and a specific activity or hobby (such as coding or writing).
Please note that this is not a comprehensive list but rather a broad perspective of current guilds, and there are some shared qualities among the categories. For example, many guilds run games, contests, giveaways, story plots, and other events to make it fun and promote activity.
Guilds have changed in other ways since the early years. Many guilds have aspects that didn’t exist many years ago. Guilds can be private vs public: changing how Neopians are able to join guilds and sometimes requiring an application before an invitation to join can be sent to an interested Neopian. Rules can now be quite specific, such as whether they allow side accounts to join. Commonly used terms and phrases has also changed, such as using NR (Neo-Related, often for events), lit or semi-lit (literate or semi-literate, usually describing posts on guild message board), no-kick (they don’t kick people out for not being active), and AI (account improvement).
One of the most significant changes to guilds occurred when the rule was implemented to disallow linking or referencing non-affiliated, outside websites. Guilds had to quickly pivot to moving their sites to Petpages, but many Neopians relied on site builders and/or didn’t have the coding skills to code Petpages. In modern times, guilds are often expected to have well developed pages and graphics, which could pose a challenge given the sharp decline in premade Petpage and guild layouts compared to the early 2000’s. Though there are users that have created and shared codes for layouts, they are not as easy to find or sort through. Image hosting has changed over the years as well, but there are a handful of popular image hosting sites that can be used for graphics on Neopet pages. And while these may present as challenges, many Neopians are quite skilled at graphic design and coding, and the talent they can bring to their guild can really enhance a guild and its activities.
Worth noting are some aspects that have not changed, and for good reason. Having a small council of 5 to oversee a guild can facilitate shared governance, responsibility, and accountability in decisions, rules, activities, etc. Different ranks or classifications for guild members, which can be a really great tool for encouraging activity to promote to a different rank or foster inter-guild competition between the ranks. Of course, the most important aspect of a guild is the guild message board – which hasn’t experienced many changes over time.
A guild’s message board serves as a forum for guild members to interact with each other and is the main activity for guilds. Many guilds implement rules regarding posting a minimal amount on the message board, and some have rules on low quality posts or posting too many times in a row. While it may seem tedious, having a certain quality or culture in a guild message board can really impact a guild and the activity of its members. The message board is how guild members meet and get to know each other, and it is widely used to share information such as shared interests, the guild in general, and Neopets.
Over the span of Neopets’s history, guilds have changed in some ways and remained consistent in others. However, guilds are and always have been a place for Neopians to meet new friends, find community, and engage in more ways to have fun on this website. There is a guild here for every Neopian, and if you don’t find one that you click with, you’re always able to start your own!