Elder Scrolls Online has never historically catered to real world holidays and events. Last year, I tried to make the best of Halloween in Tamriel, and while there were no quests or rewards offered, you could at least wear a scary costume. For 2016, ESO has decided to jump on the bandwagon by featuring holiday events and rewards this Halloween with its Witches Festival.
Starting the Festival
The Witches Festival has come to Tamriel and is available for all players. To start the fun, enter the Crown Store and look under Special Offers. Purchase the Crow Caller (for free) and use it to begin The Witchmother’s Bargain quest. This will summon a creepy witch who tasks you with bringing her some spooky ingredients. You will probably have the pumpkins and guts in your inventory, but you will still need to bring her some Essence of Death. This is obtained by killing a delve boss, so you’ll have to run off to your favorite cave to find this.
Once you have the ingredients, use the Crow Caller again and hand those goodies over. The location where you need to go for this will vary with your faction, but it should be in one of the starting areas. Once you’ve found your way there, enter Olyve’s Brewery and speak with the witch. She will exchange your ingredients for the Witchmother’s Whistle.
Enjoy the Festival
Now you can get into the fun of the Witches Festival! You will find the Witchmother’s Whistle in your mementos. Use it to turn yourself into a robed skeleton and head out to find some loot. Each time that you defeat a boss (any type), you will earn a Plunder Skull. Open these to find a variety of special themed items. Your transformation will last for two hours, and you have to be in this form when you kill a boss to receive a Plunder Skull. You will also earn double experience while playing as the skeleton.
In the Plunder Skulls, you can find new recipes, Hollowjack crafting motifs, and two scary masks. Collect all of the recipes: one green, five blue, two purple, and one gold one. The Hollowjack crafting style features items with glowing red-orange insets. Both the recipes and the crafting motifs can only be found during the Witches Festival, so hurry up and collect them while you can. The Pumpkin Spectre Mask and Scarecrow Spectre mask appear to be rare drops and function as hats in the game.
You can also find special achievements linked to the Witches Festival. Complete all the quests, collect Plunder Skulls, and gather every crafting motif to earn a unique title.
Fun for a First Holiday Foray
While the holiday quests certainly encourage players to get out and explore Tamriel, the progression wasn’t always intuitive. It took some time to figure out that the Essence of Death was dropped by a delve boss and not just any boss. It also appears that the achievement for collecting Plunder Skulls may only count unique boss kills, rather than the total number of skulls obtained. However, the holiday event was a good excuse to get out and work on some map completion. Go and visit those locales you haven’t completed yet, defeat the boss, and win some Plunder Skulls. If you’re lucky, you’ll get one of the masks or the rarer recipes.
The Witches Festival ends on November 1, so make sure you get the recipes you want before then!Related: ESO, Event (In Game), Halloween, MMORPG, The Elder Scrolls Online, Witches Festival