The Hasla Herald: Hallowtide

Hello and welcome to this week’s Hasla Herald! First off, I want to apologize for the lack of a column last week. I was sick with some sort of cold. I am sure you will all be pleased to know, I have survived and am not dead! Now that I’m feeling better and back in full force, it’s time to take a look at the first holiday event in ArcheAge.

Hallowtide is the autumn inspired event and runs until November 4th, the day that Conquest of Auroria comes out. I have never personally been a huge fan of Halloween events, but I decided to take some time and check this one out. In this issue I will go over the general content included and give some general opinions on what I thought of the quality of the event.

Both of the major port towns on both sides have been decorated in Halloween inspired décor. There are Jack-o-lantern’s and pumpkins galore. The decorations add a nice flare to the port cities and set the theme for the event. Overall, I felt the decorations were a bit generic and uninspired, but that’s normally the case for most of these events.

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A lot of the seasonal event comes in the form of cash shop items. Its sorely disappointing, there is a small selection of Halloween inspired items you can purchase from the market, some of them look pretty cool and might help give your house or farm a little flare. As with all cash shop items, they are openly tradable on the auction house, those who don’t wish to purchase them with real Money can find them on the open market at a pretty reasonable price.

The event also has an exclusive outfit you can get, but it’s a cash shop only item. Worse yet, it can only be gained through the special Hallowtide box.  The holiday box is the a little cheaper than Archeum crate and includes a variety of Halloween decorations. It honestly bothered me a bit that the outfits were only available via the gamble boxes. I don’t mind that they were a cash shop exclusive item, but the simple fact they were only available via a rare box drop, came off a bit greedy.  In the end, for those who are interested, the holiday cosmetic items can currently be found on the auction house for only a minimal amount of gold.

The meat of the event includes two parts, a daily quest and “Large pumpkin lanterns”. The pumpkin lanterns will appear randomly in the port cities. When the lantern spawns you can click on it to get a random buff. I really appreciated this addition; it was relatively unique and added a small amount of flair to a pretty mundane event.

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The daily quest is pretty simple; honestly it’s not very satisfying. The quest requires you to turn in ten pumpkins. To acquire the pumpkins you either need to grow them from seeds or simply buy them from the auction house. Worst of all, the rewards are kind of terrible and provide very little incentive to actually complete the quest. When you turn the quest in you get a “goodie bag” which contains a variety of holiday items. Most of them are consumables which provide some sort of 30 minute buff. All in all, the quest was pretty disappointing. It would have been nice to see some worthwhile rewards. Personally, I feel some sort of cosmetic item should have been included in the drop list. If I could have kept doing the quest to possibly get some sort of rare outfit, I might have felt more of an incentive to do it on a daily basis.

The Daily quest was also not very engaging. It was pretty cheap just to purchase the pumpkins off of the auction house and turn them in to the quest giver (who also happened to be the auctioneer). It would have been wonderful to see a quest that provided a holiday theme and required some effort complete. Overall, I just didn’t find this portion of the event enjoyable or exciting.

The most redeeming feature of the event is the current screenshot contest. Players who are interested can take Halloween inspired screenshots and post them to this thread in the official forums. The ten best screenshots will be posted to the official website and the winners will get a free Archeum Starter Pack, which is 150 dollars in value.

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The entire event just came off poorly planned and minimal. There was hardly any reason to participate and most of the players I know just skipped over it. The cosmetics were passable but the content bordered on abysmal. It seemed odd that no combat events were included in Hallowtide, a world boss or a combat quest would have gone a long way to making the Event interesting. Instead, the entire thing falls flat. If you are going to do a Holiday event, I feel it’s important you make it worthwhile for the players to participate.

For me, an event is defined by its rewards. Good rewards will encourage players to actually take part. If the daily quest would have included a minimal Gilda Star reward, I would have been much more inclined to do it on a daily basis. The screenshot contest is a nice addition with an awesome prize package, but in the end it’s not enough to make this event a success. I really hope Trion steps up their events in the future and includes content that is more engaging and provides better rewards. I am sure some of the players really enjoyed the event, but for me, it just wasn’t very interesting or noteworthy.

For those who haven’t participated in the event, Hallowtide runs until November 4th. During the maintenance the event will come down and Conquest of Auroria will be released. The next few weeks are sure to bring a lot of excitement. We will take an in depth look at the northern continent in the next several weeks, as I make my attempt at conquest in Auroria.

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