There's three tiers of raiding: LFR (which you've done), Normal, and then Heroic. Normal and Heroic are further subdivided into 10-person and 25-person raids, however almost all 25-person guilds have moved onto high-pop servers to support their recruitment requirements. Stormreaver is ranked #13 so you may be able to find a 25-person guild if that's your thing, but getting into a 10-man is a lot easier. I raid 25s, I think it's more fun that 10s, but there's no question that 10s are more popular and easier to get into. 25s are (generally) more competitive and pickier about their applicants and thus much harder for a rookie to get into.
The increase in difficulty between LFR and normals is huge. I would go as far as to say it's the single biggest jump in difficulty in progression in this game's history. Be patient and be prepared to spend some time working your way up into a good guild.
Here's a checklist:
1) Websites to be aware of:
- Elitest Jerks (http://elitistjerks.com/). Read their forums. Never ever ever post on them. Just read. Their theorycrafting and class guides are top-notch.
- Icy Veins (http://www.icy-veins.com/). Right now this site has the best dungeon guides.
- MMO Champion (http://www.mmo-champion.com/content/). Because for some reason the WoW website is always the last place WoW news ever shows up at.
- WoW Progress (http://www.wowprogress.com/). Since you're new your first guild probably won't be competitive, but it's good to know who the top-end raiders on your server are.
2) Mods and software to get:
- Skada Damage Meter. Meters aren't everything, but they're still important.
- Deadly Boss Mods. Required by every raid guild everywhere.
- Atlasloot. Best in-game mod for looking at raid/dungeon loot and has been for a long time.
- Ventrilo and Mumble. Most guilds and pugs use one or the other. Hardly anyone uses Teamspeak anymore but be aware of it.
3) Get into a raiding guild. Normal and heroic raiding is designed around guild groups. If your current guild doesn't raid or can't raid to the standard you're looking for you must switch guilds. Here's some traits of guilds I've found to generally be successful over the years:
- Good guilds vet their applicants. There's an application. Take it seriously. There's a trial period, take it seriously too. You don't want people in your raid who are hopelessly incompetent, don't show up on time, cause drama, or have attitude problems and the application and trial period are designed to screen these people out.
- Good guilds have some sort of loot system other than the default /roll. DKP used to be popular, now EP/GP has mostly taken its place. The point of these systems is to ensure people who contribute the most get the first shot at loot and/or make sure people who need to get loot so the raid can progress get the loot they need. Remember you're on a team and being emo about loot is one of the fastest ways to get kicked out of a raiding guild. You'll get your loot, just be patient and wait your turn.
- Good guilds have a charter, code of conduct, or some other big list of rules that everyone understands, agrees to, and enforces. Make sure to read these, oftentimes there will be something hidden in them that you need to put on your application so the leadership will know you read it.
- Speaking of rules, every good raid guild has an attendance policy that is strictly enforced. Don't waste 9 or 24 other people's time by being that guy who is always late or doesn't show up and doesn't tell anyone they won't be showing up beforehand. Guilds that don't enforce an attendance policy tend to break up because raiders aren't going to put up with not raiding because one or a handful of people aren't showing.
- Don't expect to walk into a top-end guild right away. You're new, you need to practice. Normal-mode raiding is a totally different experience than LFR or 5-mans. You should be looking at guilds running normal modes - you're not geared or experienced enough for heroics yet. If, after you get some experience your belt, you decide you want to step it up some more then you can apply. Although your server is top-ranked keep in mind that you may still need to transfer to find a guild that's right for you, especially moving into heroics.
4) Ninja Edit: Mechanics. Read Icy Veins. Watch YouTube videos if that's your thing. Know the mechanics. Don't fail at mechanics. LFR and LFD do nothing to teach you mechanics. Don't stand in bad stuff, move when you need to, hit what you're supposed to be hitting, do whatever dance the boss requires, etc. Mechanics are what almost everyone struggles with when they first start raiding.
5) And finally, please don't turn into a raging elitist prick once you get into heroics. We already have enough of those.
Edited by Kessiaan on 1/7/2013 10:53 AM PST