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Wintersday Keeps On Wintering

David North Posted:
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The joy of the holidays continues to spread both in real life and in Guild Wars 2.  ArenaNet has made sure players have plenty of ways to enjoy their time during the big Wintersday event.  I remember some of my first Wintersday moments from the original Guild Wars games, snowball fights with Grentches and spawning a trail of snowmen wherever I walked.   Those were fun times back then, but bring us now to the present and more is required to entertain players.

Each day this past week ArenaNet threw in a new part to the dungeon giving players a chance to experience something different each time.  For completing the dungeon players receives the parts to make a new toy themed mini pet.  Each possible mini pet is a toy form of some of our favorite creatures in Tyria, from stuffed animal griffins to princess dolls.  Of course to get all the parts to make one of these toys, players will need to complete the dungeon a few times, or trade for the parts with their hard earned gold.

I love to build snowmen.

As new events are brought into the dungeon, it usually involves the new toy that becomes available that day.  These events mimic the type of dynamic events players have experienced in the PVE world.  This helps players who haven’t tried the dungeon to just jump in and know what’s going on.  It also allows the dungeon to be easily updated each day.  The only down side is if you’re a player who’s done many of these events a bunch of times, you may want to experience something new.

I did notice a difference in the final battle against Tixx’ golem helper Toxx.  For a few of the battles, Toxx just gets a bit crazy and the players are tasked with beating the crap out it.  That’s how Asura put their golems in sleep mode.  But sometimes the fight goes down differently, with Toxx activating a shield and only mortar fire can get through, or he will go on a rampage attacking golem toys.  It may not be much, but it does break up some of the monotony for players who have done the dungeon every day.

Tixx finishes his grand journey around Tyria in Lion’s Arch.  Players can now participate in the Toypocalypse, a final event in the toy-makers floating factory fighting off waves of crazy toys.  The main objective is to protect the dolyaks so that they can transport presents.  Building snow walls and catapults are just a few ways a group of players can balance the odds of survival in their favor.  It feels like they mixed some PVP into the dungeon.  It really gives a nice change of pace from the other dungeon stages, which makes it more memorable.  

As some of you may have found out, the entire world if Tyria is affected by the holiday. It’s possible to find presents all around in your normal travels.  When opened, these presents may reveal smaller presents for players packed full of ugly and scratchy holiday items for trade.  But the player won’t just get these goodies; they have to fight for them!  It seems some of Tixx’s toys have hidden themselves in the presents, waiting to attack any adventurers that dare peek inside.  It offers a nice break from all the seriousness in the epic world of Tyria while you’re going and exploring maps. 

It appears that the lion statue is being rebuilt. Though it's a small change, the events do seem to have an effect on the world.

Now that Tixx has made his rounds, Wintersday is in full swing.  Players are gathering around, showing off their mini pet toys, as well as their snazzy new weapons and clothes.   Wintersday was always the lesser of the in-game holidays, with Halloween being the most anticipated throughout the year.  For Guild Wars 2 it seems that is all about to change.  With every day offering something new, ArenaNet had made Wintersday a huge event, as it should be.  Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to fill up on some eggnog and get back with the guild.  We are going to hunt for some more presents.  Safe travels, and happy holidays everyone!

Tell us some of your favorite Wintersday moments, whether from the original game, or Guild Wars 2, in the comments below.


David North