It shouldn't come as a shock to most readers of this blog that being in a good guild can lead to more positive experiences in a MMORPG. We all have our different ideas of what makes a perfect guild and also what the ideal guild activities would be. Guilds come in different shapes, sizes, and compositions but I daresay most of us feel more comfortable with a smallish but close group of people rather than being an anonymous cog in a giant-size superguild. On the other hand, smaller guilds rarely get the chance to engage in end-game activities which usually require a goodly number of players to complete.
At level 20, any player can go to a guild office in any town to create their own guild for a fee of 20,000 gold. Like WAR and EQ2, there is a guild level system that determines the maximum size, number of officers, permanent guild buffs, and susceptibility to deletion by inactivity. Guilds are eventually capped at 50 members. This is the reason why you see so many guilds listed when you use the Guild Ads feature. Anyone who has ever been in a guild before will know this number will not take long to reach especially with multiple alts per guild member. This cap on guild size, rather than being onerous, leads to a more intimate atmosphere in my opinion.
Guild levels are gained through regular player XP and activities. But guilds also generate guild points which can fuel a large number of guild activities. Guild points are generated by many means: individual players completing guild or town quests, Training Center, Guild Dungeons, guild crafting, and player attendance. These guild points can be spent by the guild leader at the Pointry NPC in Rome for Guild Dungeon keys or rare crafting supplies. They can be converted at a loss into Guild Operation books which can be used to add guild points. These books are usually sold on the market to beef up the selling guild's coffers and the buying guild's stock of guild points. Lastly, guild points are used to bid on and retain control of the towns in Atlantica Online.
For the guild leader, having control of a town leads to a SimCity-like minigame. You can set the fees that town agencies charge the players that make use of them in your town. Different towns charge different rates for using services like the Market, Bank, or Travel Agency. If you find the town you are in is charging you a rate you would rather not pay, your best bet is to port to Rome where the minimum is always the going rate. You can also build and place buildings to attract and keep satisfied the NPC population that dwells in it. Funds generated from service fees and taxes on the NPC population go directly into the guild funds so owning a town can be quite lucrative for a guild. Some towns even allow access to exclusive Guild or Nation dungeons for the guild that controls it. As you can imagine, there can be a lot of competition for the finite amount of towns amongst the numerous guilds on the same server.