I’ve been pretty lucky with guilds in various games. I’ve never researched or pursued one, I either respond in chat to a general recruitment pitch, or accept a blind invite, or actually know somebody in real life and they add me to their guild (this is the preferred method but obviously is not always available). And it has worked out well.
In LoTRO on Anor, one of the earlier Legendary Servers, I saw a guild recruiting in world chat and joined up. I am embarrassed but I can’t remember the name of the guild, I think it was Council of the North, but I didn’t wind up playing on Anor much and I have been since kicked out. Which is fair, guilds need active players, not ghosts.
Way back in Guild Wars, I was blind invited to a guild named The Helpful Guild (THG). Maybe not the most threatening sounding guild, but the players were indeed chatty and helpful. Recruitment went well and we had a core of half a dozen who were frequently on (including me) and loved to run the missions. Over time the leader of THG got busy with real life and stepped back but it was fine because by then we had an allied guild, Sacred Forge Knights (SFK), that was double our size so as I remember it, we basically were absorbed. And continued in the same vein except with twice as many players. Good times until GW2 released and we sort of dissolved with players split between the games and so forth.
In WoW Retail around the Warlords of Draenor time, four coworkers played (!!) so I subbed and joined their guild, The Honor Guard, which was funny because it also had the initials THG. The playerbase may have hated WoD but it was the high point for me in WoW because I played a healer (mistweaver monk) and had a raid spot. It was a ton of fun because the guild was chilled out, we weren’t pursuing world firsts or any of that stuff, just having fun trying to beat the content and having decent success. Good times but unfortunately, real life conflicts cropped up and I had to stop raiding.
In LoTRO in the 2007-2009 era, the heydey I suppose, I joined the Keepers of Ayrshire. I had a friend I knew from Guild Wars and she joined Keepers of Aryshire, and then suggested I joined. We played together in GW but were never in the same guild until Keepers of Aryshire, which we found amusing. This was great, lots of groups to try out dungeons, guild events (I wrote a quiz where the answers were taken from the deed log), raiding. After 2010 the guild started to thin out mostly because players wanted to try out some different games. And in that era of 2010-2012 there was stuff coming out constantly or already launched. I remember players talking about Age of Conan, Secret World, Rift, Guild Wars 2, etc. Nobody’s fault but I think we were a good example of the recruitment adage: if you aren’t growing, you’re dying.
So when I see guilds constantly recruiting… I understand. You have to in order to stay healthy, active, viable.