Valar Guild

Home   News   Members   About   Joining   Forum   Contact   Frames   

Joining the Valar Guild:

How do I Join?

    We have no age, gender, or country requirement. You may have other guild memberships as well.
    We currently have two styles of membership: Tolkien-only or Full Member.
    Guild-friends: they like our game-style.
    Tolkien-friends: they like our Tolkien discussions.

Tolkien-only Member:
    If you do not wish to do online gaming at this time but would like to indulge your inner Tolkien, this is for you.
    To join as a Tolkien-only, email Varda (erase the NOSPAM) to say what you're interested in, and then send something that can be added to the Tolkien site. This can be an article, humor, art, poetry, story, book review, or something to do with Tolkien's languages. Varda and others can help you, but the work should be original with you, your very own Precious. Articles must be researched from the books as your last fact check, as non-Tolkien books and the web have incorrect information that others pick up and pass on. Let's not be part of the incorrect information dispersal.
    You should be familiar with at least the Lord of the Rings, at minimum have listened to the audio books or even seen PJ's movies, although having read Lord of the Rings or more is even better. Remember, we are a book club predating those other mediums. Canon is the Hobbit, the Lord of the Rings, and more or less the Silmarillion, although we also use Histories of Middle-earth.
    You may use the Forum and enjoy live Discord chat meetings every Sunday at 5pm EST in Valar Guild's meeting_place. Please use courtesy of which Tolkien would approve in all communications.

Full Member:

    If you've finished reading the Lord of the Rings and enjoy courteous gaming, then email Varda (erase the NOSPAM). Or come to a Sunday Discord meeting, using courtesy, enjoy the meeting and get to know a few of us, and ask to join. Let your helper know which games you are interested in and which Tolkien books you've read. Take a simple entry test to show you've read Lord of the Rings (LotR) answering four of five questions right.  The test can be retaken. Together pick your primary guild name (a Tolkien character from any book not yet taken) not yet used by another member (check Membership page for used names).
    You are welcome to indulge your Tolkien Side by contributing to your guild's Tolkien site, but it is not required. (Still, we like it!)
    As Valar Gamers, Members need to prefer following Tolkien's values of working together, fair play, trustworthiness, clean language, and literacy. We have a nifty yellow boot for the other sort.
    The current main guild games are 1: Lord of the Rings Online. 2: World of Warcraft.
    World of WarCraft (WoW) has official branches of Alliance on Lothar server and Horde on Uldaman server;
    Lord of the Rings Online (LotRO) has an official branch on Landroval server, of mixed race, light rp. We have a text story running in our Valar Guild Forum in Lord of the Rings Online: "Scouting Ahead" and Discord where you can say hi and tell your guild names and crafting/gaming needs.
    We have members playing nearly anything online and try to keep track of this on our Games page and using Discord.
What is the Valar Guild ?

    We are an international Tolkien fan club that first came together while gaming in Diablo 1. We made a haven online to join together with trustworthy, clean-spoken players, much as the Valar tried to create Arda Unmarred. Then we created web pages for Tolkien and Gaming, making ourselves a productive guild rather than just a clan or kin. We formed our current system in October 4, 1997 in Battlenet East, using the original Diablo game. We went on to everything Blizzard put out, but now we play all online games, including MMORPGs, with games defaulted to Eastern USA to help us find each other. We default all our times to Eastern Standard time.
    We are not a movie guild and pre-date the movies, although most of us did see those movies and enjoy chatting about them as well.
    But if you really want to know us, see these jokes by Guild members (mostly from Diablo players)!:
"You know you're in Valar when....".

I never finished or never heard of Lord of the Rings! What do I do to game with you?

    You're kidding, right? If not...
    Guild-friends are not members, but are people whose gaming values are the same as those of the Full Members. They might be considering membership, they might not have finished reading or never read The Lord of the Rings, or they did read it but haven't fully joined or rejoined yet.
    They can game, scout for new members, and do anything that does not require a password.
     In Lord of the Rings Online, Battlenet and World of WarCraft, and Steam (Scatha runs the Steam spot) they can come into the Valar friend channel to find us for gaming and chatting; courtesy required. Friend lists are also helpful.
    Guild-friends cannot give entry tests. They cannot go into passworded guild games and areas such as banks. They can join a friend channel with us in any game for contact. They do not have an exclusive guild name (but can be thinking about one!).
    A guild-friend is like an elf-friend in Tolkien: a trusted companion to elves but who is not an elf and may not be able to understand all things elvish. Best idea? Play with us and read the books! It is recommended to read the Hobbit prelude to the Lord of the Rings, but is not required for simple entry. For non-readers, the movies can help a lot with understanding us although the movies are not good enough for Full Membership.

    We meet as a whole every Sunday 5pm ESDT/ 22:00 GMT on Discord for business followed by Tolkien chat. This is not required, but is a great way to speak with an officer or chat about gaming and Middle-earth. Transcript links of past meetings are available from the general News page.
    Discord is where we meet as it goes across all games and is good for Tolkien-onlies and guild-friends.
    The Forum also helps keep up contact for those who can't make it to meetings.
    Meetings can be a good place to find out which suit to wear to game with your buddies, as well as talk Tolkien. We often game after the Tolkien chat. OK, some are gaming during the whole meeting with alt+tab and scrolling, or homework, or surfing, but we don't know about that, of course.


Chairmen > Council of Mahanaxar > Gaming > Valar > Maiar > Full Members > MoH's, and Initiates.
Chairmen > Council of Mahanaxar > Tolkien Site > Web masters > Tolkien-onlies, Full Members, MoH's, and Initiates.
Special ranks only for a single game branch:
    World of WarCraft: Tulca "Steadfast". Stuck with the guild branch through thick and thin. Title and extra bank privileges.
    Lord of the Rings Online: Warlord, dropped title and is now simply an Officer who is a trusted player in that branch; not an overall title in the guild. Leads instances or invites members' alternates into the branch.
Entry testers: any Maia or Vala Honor officers (generally 1, sometimes with a trainee or a fellow tester who wants to join in). Testers often tend to give special help to those they brought in, at least to start.
Maia testers: any Vala officers (previously a panel of 3, but it has dropped to 2). (A Maia Honor has given great aid to the guild as a whole, has good conduct, and passed a tough quiz over the Lord of the Rings books.)
Vala testers: any Vala officers (generally including all other Valar honor). (A Vala Honor has near-fanatically helped the guild keep operating, has good conduct, passed the Maia Honor, and passed a tough quiz over the Silmarillion.)
MoH: member of honor, title no longer used because they were expected to eventually read the Lord of the Rings for Full Membership, but rarely did so. They were mostly family members; now we handle that as guild-friends.
Guild-friends: friends or family of guild members who are courteous and are at least tolerant of fans of the Lord of the Rings books.

Varda for general contact about anything. Erase the words NOSPAM before the actual email.
    Web pages start at this landing page. From there, the index leads to all guild pages, including those added by members that are using web space outside our main site. Our main space and domain name is currently provided by Pallando-(Valar), after the death of Alatar-(Valar).
    Guild news in general is found on the News page.
    Forum - use your guild name and jump in. PM's to admins (Eonwe and Varda) will be read, as will emails.
    Emails to the group go out for special projects and to see if an apparently absent member still wishes to be in the guild. It's kind to let Varda know if you are leaving, so we can adjust the web pages and naming system. If you wish to drop full membership due to not gaming, you might consider shifting to Tolkien-only membership or guild-friend.
    Discord: we conduct meetings on Discord, can give tests, and get together outside meetings and games just because.
        Room name: For meetings, go to Valar Guild's meeting_place, and for general chat go to Harbor. For invitations, you can ask Varda or Eonwe, although we have others who can provide this as well.
    Name: We recognize each other by a specific Tolkien character name as our primary way of reference, as if it were your "real" name, like "Joe". The name is used to refer to each other and give credit for articles and actions. (You do want credit!) It is not required to be the character name in-game.
    Meetings are helpful to both the member and the guild, to take care of the monthly contact and to give each member a chance to comment. It's your chance to make your opinion or suggestion known in live chat in a civil manner. Guild leaders are present and can be of immediate assistance. This is the member's guild. It will be what the members help make it to be. Meetings are not required, due to the problems of time zones, work, and school. They often include a "before" and "after" meeting for those with time problems or just to hang out.

    The Council of Mahanaxar coordinates guild projects and handles issues. Council members must be Valar honor. Vala honor can handle tests singly for Full Member and in twos or more for Maia, and Vala.
    Varda is co-chair of the mother-guild (overall), is the contact person for everything, does overall web page co-ordination, and does numerous web pages including the Tolkien and Community sites. The Tolkien Site includes Articles, Stories, Poetry, Translations, Art, Humor, and Reviews (Review page handled by Arveleg). Varda and Eonwe are Forum administrators, and they are admin for Discord.
    She is branch master for Lord of the Rings Online ( fka Middle-earth Online). She currently plays Lord of the Rings Online.
    Eonwe is co-chair of the mother-guild (overall). He is branch master for World of WarCraft and helps on Lord of the Rings Online.  Eonwe is the main Forum administrator, working with Varda. He does a lot of programming, including the Tolkien Site Search Engine and the entire Games Site. He is bringing the coding of the Tolkien Site into the 21st century so that is changing over time.
    He plays World of WarCraft and Lord of the Rings Online.

    Valar honor members are required to sit at least for a time on the Council, but can then retire to just gaming and Tolkien while retaining the Vala honor.
    Any Vala Honor can scout and do any test, including entry, Maia, and Vala.
    As Council, they handle security with member and Maiar help, handle issues, start, join, and handle projects. They must be able to email or otherwise contact the other Council members to be effective. After retiring from the Council, they retain Valar Honor in recognition that they have given great service and commitment to the overall guild, and proven strong knowledge of the Silmarillion as well as the Lord of the Rings books. They may continue as Advisors, return to the Council later, or finally rest.

    Maiar honor members help the Council, start (coordinating with Valar), join, and handle projects, scout and test for entry, and bring in new members reporting in email to Varda to let it be known on the web pages for everyone. They have given service and commitment to the guild and show strong knowledge of the LotR in a live test by Valar honor members. Service is weighed higher than book knowledge, but book knowledge is necessary to be good as entry testers. A Maia can be invited to test for Vala honor.

    Full Members can start projects (coordinating with the Valar Council) or join projects and scout for possible members.  They can do everything a Tolkien-only does plus game. Members of all honors help with scouting and security. Full members can apply for or be invited to test for Maia honor if they have shown commitment, service, and knowledge of the LotR books. They give suggestions which have been known to change the whole course of the group. They are the major strength of the guild.

    Tolkien-only members can join and can start Tolkien-related projects (coordinating with Varda so it can go online and be linked to the main site), and scout for possible members. Their main job is to help with the Tolkien site , which includes articles, poems, stories, translations, humor, book lists, book reviews, and art. They can join the Forum and Discord meetings.

    Members of Honor are usually children of Full Members. The full member sponsor has read the LotR to the MoH and makes sure the MoH plays honorably. They are one reason our guild requires all gaming members to keep their language clean and generally be role models of how to behave as an honorable person should. Due to difficulties and to make the ability wider, this has been dropped; see instead "guild-friend" below.

    Guild-friend. Anyone, not just a family member, who is courteous and is tolerant of fans of the Lord of the Rings books is welcome. This includes Tolkien-friends who do not game or add to the Tolkien Site but enjoy discussions about Tolkien's legendarium. They may join the Discord channel and meetings. They may join the friend channel in any of our games even though they can't join the actual branch as a Full Member, to allow chat and coordination of effort.

Rules and Code of Conduct:

    If you want the Rules and Code of Contact spelled out, instead of just saying "courteousy and fellowship", we can oblige you. Hop to the following!  :)
    Rules, Code of Conduct - rules in gaming and chat behavior: page by Elatan-(T) fka Amillo-(Valar).