My guild didn't really participate much in conquest during its first two weeks, largely due to the fact that my pet tank and I were on holiday for most of this period and therefore not around to drum up interest.
For week three we were all the more determined to get everyone involved and see what our guild could do. We ended up scoring over a million points, with twenty people contributing - but the lowest score on the leaderboard was still more than twice as much.
I had very mixed feelings about the whole thing. On the one hand the whole system had given us a great excuse to be more active than previously and make a point of playing with guildies instead of alone. I really appreciated people's efforts. I posted an internal leaderboard on our guild forums to let everyone know who had contributed how many points. It was a real eye-opener to see who got really into conquests and who didn't care.
On the other hand the experience was also a little demotivating. People had tried so hard, and yet chances of ever getting onto the leaderboard with a score like ours seemed slim, considering the competition.
Nonetheless, Tuesday rolled around and we decided to park the guild ship above Nar Shaddaa and dive right into the action again. People were giddy and playing obsessively that evening, and suddenly we found ourselves in the top ten for the planet, slowly clawing our way up over the course of the evening until we reached fifth place. It felt great, but I figured that it was just a fluke, that we had simply managed to get in before the bigger guilds, who were sure to push us off quickly once they decided to join in.
However, much to my surprise, we were still on the board the next morning, though we had been pushed down a rank or two. And that's roughly where we remained for the rest of the week, finally ending the week as number six on the leaderboard, with a score of just over two million.
Incidentally, Larry Everett on Massively, who had also been a bit disappointed by his initial experience with conquests, published an article called "Five tips for making SWTOR conquests work for smaller guilds" last Tuesday in which he was clearly pleased to have found that his (also rather small) guild could be successful in conquests after all.
After our experience with Nar Shaddaa it seems to me that there is one tip that's more important than all others: Participate in conquest during a week when as many planets as possible are up for grabs. During the week when things seemed kind of dire to me, only three planets were contested, meaning that there were a total of thirty leaderboard spots to go around. This past week, people could choose among five different planets, opening up a total of fifty spots - and as it turns out, while we may not be among the top thirty guilds on the server, we absolutely can make it into the top fifty with a planet that offers bonuses that suit our play style.