What MMORPGs Can Teach Us About Leveling Up a Heroic Developer Team


For the better part of a decade, I have been leading guilds in massively multiplayer role-playing games (MMORPGs). Currently, I lead a guild in Guild Wars 2, and before that, I led progression raid teams in World of Warcraft, while also maintaining a career as a software engineer. As I made the transition into software development, it became clear that the skills I gained in building successful raid groups translated well to building successful tech teams.

In this article, I’ll share how you can build, improve, and maintain your own progression software and/or systems teams. I’ll cover assembling our team, leading the team, optimizing for success, continuously improving, and keeping morale high.

Diversify your team

While values are important to share, the same skills, experience, and roles are not. Ten tanks might be able to get a boss down, eventually, but it is certainly more effective to have diversity. You need people who are skilled and trained in their specific roles to work together, with everyone focusing on what they do best.

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