With a new expansion comes a new legendary (or three) to whet the appitites of raiders everywhere, and cause strife an agnst in more guilds than even I have been in. This time around our staff wielding DPS friends are the eligible group, and I'm sure there will be a whole lot of drama around this new bad boy.
Picking the winner
Now I may be a bit jaded, or maybe the opposite of that, but my personal feeling on this is "who gives a shit". I gaurantee that picking up a legendary item will not suddenly allow you to bowl over heroic bosses that have given your guild pause or challenge in the past. Members who stand near the wielder will no longer fail to interrupt, or move from the fire. In addition, unless something changes between how the items were forged in Wrath, you have to have an entire guild behind you.
That's right - in order to get your weapon of awesome, you need your whole guild.
Now this brings up some interesting thoughts. First, let's look at some of the previous legendaries.
Thunderfury - My personal favorite, this bad boy required two rare drops off bosses in Molten Core, 10 ore drops from Blackwing Lair, and a whole lot of Arcanite Bars. After that you needed to kill a summoned raid boss in Silithus and you were done. So the only real assitance that you needed from your guild was to kill the additional boss. Everything else you were doing as part of a normal clearing of raid instances. Back in Vanilla we handled bindings with DKP, and then sold the rest of the mats. I had to beg/borrow/steal a ton of gold to buy my ore, but assistance from the guild wasn't 'required'.
Sulfuron's Hammer - or whatever it was called. About the same as the Thunderfury, but with a whole lot less awesome, and there was no additional summoned boss. You needed parts that dropped from the bosses you were killing anyway, and a crafted piece that didn't requrie the whole guild pitching in to get. Hell, if you were a blacksmith and had some deep pockets, you could get the first part all by yourself.
Ateish - The first super grind legendary, not only did this require 40 shards that dropped off the original bosses in Naxx, but you then had to kill KT and C'Thun. Oh, and you had to be at least nuetral with the Brood of Nozdoramu to even get the quest. So if your guild wasn't clearing Naxx, and then willing to go kill C'Thun, you were boned. At least it only involved doing what you were trying to do anyway - kill bosses.
Twin Blades of Azzanoth - Arguably the easiest of the legendaries to obtain, nabbing thie pair of swords only requried you to kill Illidan - something you were probably trying to do anyway.
Thori'dal, the Stars Fury - Another legendary that simply dropped off the end boss, though certainly far fewer guilds killed Kil'Jaeden than killed Illidan.
Val'anyr - Similar to Ateish, this weapon involved gathering drops off bosses, even the non-hard mode versions of the bosses. Final completion involved killing Yogg+3, which was the first of the 'hard mode' methods of killing him(her?). Again, this didn't take anything special from your guild - just a willingness to give you the fragments, and then the ability to kill Yogg+3.
Shadowmourne - The final legendary at the end of Wrath, it was the first that required more of your raid than just killing bosses. First there was the saronite you had to collect - easy enough. You could level an entire stable of saronite farming whores to run through the heroics for you. You needed a drop (gauranteed as long as you had the quest) that came from two of the bosses in the plague wing, and you should be killing them anyway. Then you collected 1000 souls. After that though, things changed.
First, you had to start collecting 50 shards off the bosses - similar to Ateish and Val'anyr. Again, nothing up to this point has required your guild to do anything but kill bosses you were killing anyway. Then though, the real fun began. You now had three quests involving the wing bosses, and killing them in very specific ways. I'm not certain, but I'm pretty sure most guilds did these kills on normal mode, meaning you missed out on a shot at the heroic loot that week - just so you could get a quest completed. I know we wiped a lot trying to let someone get their quests done, though they certainly weren't impossible. Then it was just a matter of killing Arthas, and boom - a shiney axe.
Rewarding one, sacrificing everyone else
So when you're making a decision about how to divvy out your legendary, remember a few things. First, everyone better be commited to making it happen. Second, it's a piece of loot that will probably sit rotting after another content patch. Val'anyr managed to be useable all the way through ICC, and Thunderfury was hands down the very best tank sword available in Vanilla (and even into the start of BC).
The legendaries are hot, but not becuase they're legendary - but because they're the best available. Personally, I think handling them differently than any other loot is pretty dumb, especially since most folks will finish off with 3/4 of it completed, and unable to polish it off until several patches later. Not that I'm bitter about not getting my mace until well into ICC.
In the end, give the legendary to anyone you want. I gaurantee