This is quite a common subject for discussion following the changes to the raiding scene in Cataclysm. Both have their pros and cons and I will try and discuss those here. Ultimately the choice is really down to personal preference but there are some key differences so let’s explore these.

First off the 10 man raiding guild. A large number of former 25 man guilds have downsized and are now running 10 mans instead. Many of these have been forced to do so by the exodus of players to Rift, the start of summer(ish) and burnout. It is quite easy to see why so many have decided to make this transition rather than recruit for 25s. It is a lot easier to to get 10 players to function well together than 25. There are fewer players to make mistakes, fewer below par dpsers and healers, fewer people to afk during a raid and fewer dramas since there are less people. It is much easier for a 10 man guild to fine tune their raid and get everyone playing at their peak.

However there are some drawbacks to 10 mans. For starters there is less loot per player than in 25s. 25 man raids give 90 valor points per boss whilst 10 mans give 70. Therefore 25 man guilds will get their gear upgrades faster. Secondly there is normally greater competition for raid spots in a 10 man simply because there are fewer spots available. If you are applying to a 25 man guild then there is a greater chance that they will have a spot for you. They will be able to juggle around the raid composition to fit you in a lot more easily than a 10 man.

I think the greatest factor is your enjoyment. Personally I find 25s much more “epic.” It feels much more special to get 25 people working in tandem and downing a boss than 10. It looks greater onscreen. A 25 man guild will have more players online during the day to muck about with. A 25 is normally less hampered with players taking a break from World of Warcraft or leaving the guild since they will have more replacements and standbys. Something else that is perhaps slightly less relevant as most high level guilds near level 25, is that larger guilds will level up faster and you will therefore gain better perks faster.

So if you are thinking of applying to a new guild but can’t decide between a 10 or 25 man guild, then I would suggest you bear in mind the pros and cons of each, but ultimately join the guild that you think that you will enjoy the most. If you want a close knit group of players who will likely be of a higher average skill level (since fewer poorer players to bring them down) then go for the 10 man. If, however, you want that “epic” feeling then apply to the 25.