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The Year of the Rooster

By Alexander Wilkie on January 30, 2017 | Columns | Comments

The Year of the Rooster

The Lunar New Year has been a historically popular festival for Guild Wars 2, despite its comparatively small impact on the world and limited events. Tt is an extremely profitable time to be playing with some special rewards that benefit both old and new players. It also remains one of the few festivals now that is getting yearly love from development, as the theme of the festival changes according to the zodiac for the year.

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The Lunar New Year of Guild Wars 2 comes about in game for a few weeks surrounding the turn of the lunar calendar, associated with by most as the Chinese calendar and referred to as the Chinese New Year by many. In Tyria, this date is meant to represent the Canthan New Year, with the Canthans being a race of humans who live in a land called Cantha (also known as the Empire of the Dragon) to the far south, and who closely resemble Chinese/Asian culture. The event only began to be celebrated in game in 2015, with the Year of the Ram, and has continued to be celebrated since then, with some small decorations in the human capital of Divinity’s Reach and the Dragon Ball activity.

Unlike most festivals, the Lunar New Year celebrations do not confine players to specific areas of the game to receive their rewards, outside of a few minutes per day. One of the biggest features that the festival brings to the game comes from the huge boost to Magic Find in game, which affects the loot players will get from monsters, enemies in World versus World and even some loot boxes and chests. Although a high magic find doesn’t guarantee you better rewards, an increase in the chances to profit is always welcome in any game across the genre. As well as this boost to magic find, the festival is profitable through the purchasing of Divine Lucky Envelopes, which can be purchased in the celebration areas for one gold, and then either opened or sold on the Trading Post.

These Lucky envelopes are one of the biggest ways to make gold for almost 0 effort in the game. Players can purchase them for 1 gold, at a limit of 16 per day, and proceed to sell them on the trading post for around a 34s profit each, resulting in around a 4g per day profit from just visiting the vendor. Over the three to four weeks of the festival, this adds up to around 84-102 gold just for logging in. If selling containers isn’t your style, even just opening these envelopes will only set you back about 10s each, as they contain items that can be sold back to the vendor for almost the same price you purchased at. If you want to really try your New Year’s luck, or increase magic find through the mountains of Essence of Luck provided, these envelopes also have a chance to drop rare back items and foods that can be sold for more gold or held on to, allowing you to sell when supply has dried up so you can get an even bigger profit. The food being especially lucrative as it is used in the meta across both PvE and WvW, making it a smart and easy investment to put the free gold you are getting from the festival in to.

You can also get these envelopes by taking part in the Dragon Ball arena, where players are put in to teams against one another and use unique skills to blast, beat and burn their enemies in to submission. This seasonal activity is usually farmed for some easy achievement points and to finish the meta achievement for the festival event, but also can provide players with even more of the liquid rewards, providing participants with tokens that can be traded in along with some gold for even more Divine Envelopes on top of the daily cap, letting you either sell for more profit or open for more chances at back items and to gain more magic find. The Dragon Ball arena is one of the more enjoyable ways to get some free gold, and is a fairly small time investment compared to some of the other festivals.

Whilst I wouldn’t by any means say the Lunar New Year is the most profitable festival, it is definitely the easiest festival to get quick gold from and that will reward players across all game modes due to its boost in magic find throughout its duration. This design choice is one of the best parts to me, rewarding players without forcing or them to farm the unique content while its around to make the most profit from the festival. Providing a boost to new accounts in the form of easy access to Luck and meta foods as well as giving a liquid gold benefit to veteran players of the game makes this festival extremely rewarding for very minimal effort, and is a nice break after grind based festivals like the Mad King’s Labyrinth and Wintersday Jumping Puzzles.

The festival changes each year have also been something that make it one of the best festivals for me, providing new outfits, backpack skins, food choices and since Heart of Thorns sets of decorations and gliders. Comparatively small for a Guild Wars 2 festival, this gives a lot of added meaning to the event for a lot of players, and has managed to keep the festival very relevant despite the small amount of playable content that it brings. It also gains a lot of praise because of the small changes to decoration and theme that come with each year, something that has been missing for a couple of years from other festivals. Even though they are pretty small changes it is nice to see that thought and development is going in before the content ships, with awesome little things like this year’s rooster Glider Skin.

In the lead up to a new Living World episode, this has been a welcome gold boost and a nice boost to players across all game modes, giving reason to a lot of people to log in between updates. Wishing you all prosperity, happiness and luck this Lunar New Year, and hoping to see you all around for the year to come. 

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