Snow Globe Events
Starting December 14th as soon as the patch goes live, and running throughout the duration of the holiday event, players will be able to participate in three different events based in Lion’s Arch. For the holiday, the Mystic Forge has been transformed into a giant snow globe, and by speaking with a nearby NPC, players can teleport into the snow globe and compete in various games.
A huge jumping puzzle, spoiled slightly by the preview video is the focus of this activity. Just like the Clocktower event seen during Halloween, players will be grouped and put into instances to compete in the jumping puzzle. Also like the clocktower, the event has increased difficulty through the means of a timing mechanism. Players who are doing the jumping puzzle will suffer from Frostbite and if they take too long they will be kicked out of that attempt.
No word yet on if there is a down time between runs like the clock tower. Though it was mentioned that the platforms will be wider and more accommodating than the ones seen in the Clocktower, so we can hope for less rage.
This one, if I may interject, sounds amazing. It’s a single flag CTF game mode where players are trying to capture a pile of presents and get them back to their base before the other team can. Instead of playing with your normal abilities however, players will choose between one of three classes: Support, Scout, or Heavy.
Each class has it’s own set of skills, plus each player is given one skill based on their character’s profession (the example we were given was a Warrior is given a Charge ability). The combination of Class and profession abilities sounds to be simply charming. The rest is a whimsical fight with snowballs, freezing players in place, presents falling from the sky, and tons of map based power ups.
Guild Wars 2 meets Guitar Hero. No seriously. Groups of 3 Players will be presented a set of falling notes on their screen and must time playing the correct notes to when they are in the middle of their screen. Each song starts with a perfect score of 100 and every note you miss detracts from your score. There are several new Wintersday themed songs, as well as the Guild Wars 2 theme, and Fear Not This Night to play.
After players complete the song there is a freeplay mode where you can create your own music, and it’s my hope (and ArenaNet’s) that there could be some real creativity out of the community with this feature.
Toymaker Tixx Events
The Marvelous Toymaker Tixx (and his golem Toxx) star as the centerpiece for most of the activities players will be presented this Wintersday season. His travel schedule can be found here . The real joy is what he will bring each day of the event, and what wondrous rewards player’s can obtain for visiting his massive airship.
It can be described as a mix between Horde Mode (Gears of War) and Tower Defense (Basically every flash game out right now). Players will have access to unique holiday themed weapons to combat waves of malfunctioning toys trying to assault Tixx’s friendly Pack Dolyaks. Each stop along Tixx’s Tyrian Tour (hehe) will present players with the chance to play a new version of Toypocalypse themed to each of the races he is visiting.
Players will be automatically grouped into teams of 5, tasked with defending the Dolyaks by gathering materials from around the map in order to build defensive locations like catapults. It was hinted that each day the event goes on, the new version of Toypaclypse will be slightly more engaging, and probably harder. In addition to renegade (misfit?) toys to guard against, rumor has it that Skritt have snuck onto the airship and are after shinies of their own.
The reward for your efforts? Toy parts used in crafting. And each race’s event will reward a special blueprint for a toy unique to that race. Complete enough Toypocalypse events and you can craft a collectible toy of your choice using the blueprint Tixx gives you. It wasn’t mentioned if there is any limit on the toymaking, or if players can trade them afterwards.
The great news: once Tixx reaches Lion’s Arch on the 20th you can replay any of the previous Toypocalypse events for any of the races. And as long as you visit Tixx at least once after he arrives at his final destination you can get rewarded with the holiday collectible item (my money is on a toy).
The rest of Tyria will see minor changes. In every map except over the continent of Orr, Tixx’s airship may randomly drop presents on the map. These presents will spawn mini events when opened, though the contents of these packages were kept secret from us. These sound similar to the haunted doors, so expect fanciful Wintersday themed elementals and monsters to dispatch, as well as bundles of goodies if you defeat them.
In addition to potentially fatal falling presents, they are blowing the doors open on crafting by adding 275 new crafting recipes to the game for the event. It sounds like these will all be temporary recipes, so stock up on any crafting mats you can find now. There are no new resource nodes in the game (ala Candy Corn), so it sounds like these recipes will use existing materials (and possible toy parts).
The 2 PvP modes in the game will see some cosmetic additions as well. sPvP gets holiday themed finishers, while WvW gets Candy Cane Ballistas. I think we can all agree WvW comes out on top in this particular contest.
If you want to view more images of Wintersday, head on over to our gallery here.