Spirit of the Seas: The WoW Festival I’d design

My eye was caught by this week’s WoW Insider Community Blog post in which we are asked to design our own WoW holiday.

So without further ado I would like to present The Spirit of the Seas, a festival in which the denizens of Azeroth give thanks to the Goddess of the Sea for her bounty of fishes and her kindness in sparing the lives of sailors. Azeroth after all has a lot of coast lines and boats a plenty so it surely makes sense that it’s people should pay their respects to the beautiful and fickle sea.

The main action would take place in four different beachfront locations.

For the Alliance:

  • Darkshore
  • Westfall

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For the Horde:

  • Echo Isles
  • Beach in Ghostlands

There would be faction appropriate lanterns hung on sticks pushed into sand, beach chairs and little stalls set up by the locals. Food in the shape of fish would be available through the festival as would cold beers or other suitably chilled beverages. All of the above would provide some sort of stat buff. Souvenirs could be purchased including a bucket and spade which for the duration of the festival would build a little sand castle on the ground in front of you. You can also purchase bubbles of stranglekelp as a sort of Festival long mini pet, a bit like the Green and Yellow balloons the Dark Moon Faire lets you buy and a blow up horse for paddling with because someone thought that inviting Goblins to set up a stall would be a good idea.

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There would also be increased activity on most beaches with little groups of revelers talking about how much they hope to see sea monsters and telling fantastical stories about giant whales and squid which eat ships for breakfast.

Events

The mainstay of the event would take place at 8pm server time every night. The relevant faction leader for each location would arrive by boat with much pomp and ceremony. They would then make a speech about how important the sea has been to the people who live along it’s coastlines. This segment would end with them dropping something personal into the water.

Next food and other offerings would be piled onto boats. These are then pushed out to sea and set alight as they drift as a tribute to the Goddess.

Watching the ceremony would award you the achievement “Burning Boats – There is no accounting for Tribute taste” – listen to a Faction Leader give thanks for the bounties of the sea.

There would also be another achievement for listening to all 4 Faction leaders within one Festival but this wouldn’t count towards the meta achievement.

As the distant flames flicker getting smaller and smaller as they sail towards the horizon, a wave of ghostly figures rises from the depths and wanders up onto the beach to mingle once against with the living. These are the souls of those lost at sea. Clicking on them brings up a dialogue box in which you can offer them drink and ask to hear their stories. Interacting with them has a chance to reward you with a broken shell which when used turns you into one of them for 10 minutes on a 30 minute cooldown, if you die with this effect up, your body breaks down into seaweed and shells just like the  Kvaldir in Northrend.

This awards you the achievement “Full Fathom Five” – talk to the drowned during the Spirit of the Seas Festival.

At around hourly intervals, Naga would attack the beaches trying to carry off festival goers. This would culminate in a giant shark attacking the boat races. “Maws II the revenge” seeks payback for the murder of his brother by eating as many sailors as possible. Killing him would net you currency and a chance to get your very own “Son of Maws 3D” mini pet, basically a really annoyed looking baby shark in a bubble.

You would also be awarded the achievement “We didn’t need a bigger boat after all” – Rid the world of Maws II albeit temporarily.

Other activities would include boat races. This would be mostly like ram racing but without the annoying fatigue component. Coming first in a race would reward you with a winner’s bag which would contain more pearls and possibly some random item. Taking part would give you an achievement naturally. The races would take place regardless of whether there were other players there or not, letting you compete against famous NPCs, generic locals or other players depending on who was ready for some hardcore sailing at the time. I’m sure for example Nat Pagle wouldn’t be able to resist showing up at such an event and I bet he’s a pretty mean rower. Rowing too hard would make you sea sick which would force the title <Sea Sick> on you for two hours. Whilst feeling slightly green you would be able to get optional achievements for things like killing 10 players in PvP and killing a raid boss.

For the duration of the Festival, all catches in salt water will yield a minimum of 2 fish per catch as the Goddess rewards her followers well. In fact sea life would be particularly bountiful at this time, increasing the drop rate of a certain turtle mount I haven’t got yet as well as increasing the numbers of turtles and fish swimming around.

Then as every Festival requires a bit where you have to run around the world picking stuff up, there would be secret watery shrines to the Goddess dotted around Azeroth. In order to make these hidden locations visible to all the clandestine clan who worship the Goddess every day rather than for two weeks a year have set a challenge. Are you willing to be ported up into the heavens and then to take a leap of faith into the turbulent waters below? On falling into the sea (all forms of slow fall are banned) you receive a vision of the Goddess in humanoid form (she appears as a Night Elf in Darkshore, a Bloodelf in Ghostlands etc) who thanks you for your tribute and blesses you. The blessing not only gives you 10 percent experience/rep buff but it also allows you to see what has been concealed. The Goddess returns you to the beach with a whispered memory lingering in your mind, visit her shrines and whisper a prayer there in return for pearls.

The location of said shrines would vary between being underwater, think Vashj’ir and nestled on the edge of beaches.  There would be achievements for visiting all those on the Eastern Kingdoms, Kalimdor, Outlands, Northrend and Panderia as well one for completing the lot.

Items

The currency for the Festival would be pearls and these would be gained through daily quests for things such as boat racing, from visiting shrines and from participating in Maws kills.

(Some of the pearls can be opened and have a small chance to yield either the opposing faction’s boats or a giant crab mount which can travel on land, over water and on the sea floor and whilst you’re riding it, you can’t drown).

Mermaid tail – makes you swim faster and provides underwater breathing not to mention style by the bucket load (for Cymre).

Boats – These would come in four different flavours, one for each of the Festival locations but would go into your mount selection so a player assuming they play both sides could collect all four.

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Polymorph: Fish out of water. Pretty much as it says on the tin. Victims of polymorph turn into a rather miserable looking fish and flap around pathetically, perfect for adding insult to injury when you polymorph someone off their mount in PvP.

Drops

Mini Shark in a bubble pet (Maws 3D) Mr Harpy insists that it needs to have the proper old fashioned 3D glasses complete with red and green lens.

Broken Shell from the Souls lost at Sea. This turns you into a ghostly figure a bit like the Kvaldir in Northrend, with barnacles and sea weed for hair although you are still essentially recognizable as the race you were before the sea change started. Dying with the debuff up has the same effect as when the Kvaldir die, collapsing into shells and seaweed and particles of sand.

Examples of Achievement

  • “Burning Boats – There is no accounting for Tribute taste” – Listen to a Faction Leader praise the Goddess for the bounty of the sea
  • “Full Fathom Five” – talk to the drowned during the Spirit of the Sea Festival.
  • We didn’t need a bigger boat after all” – Rid the world of Maws II albeit temporarily.
  • “Castles in the Sand” – Build a Sand Castle on the following beaches during the Spirit of the Seas.

Title:

For completing the meta achievement there would be a title, <Pearl of the Goddess>.

20 Days of Blogging – Your first day playing WoW

Today’s random number is 3.

Day 01 – Introduce yourself
Day 02 – Why you decided to start a blog
Day 03 – Your first day playing WoW
Day 04 – Your best WoW memory
Day 05 – Favourite item(s) in game
Day 06 – Your workplace/desk (photo and/or description)
Day 07 – The reason behind your blog’s name
Day 08 – 10 things we don’t know about you
Day 09 – Your first blog post
Day 10 – Blog/Website favourites
Day 11 – Bad habits and flaws
Day 12 – A usual day in your life/online time
Day 13 – People (players/bloggers) that you admire
Day 14 – This upsets you
Day 15 – Your desktop background (on your computer) and why you chose it
Day 16 – Things you miss (post Cataclysm)
Day 17 – Your favourite spot (in game or outside it)
Day 18 – Your favourite outfit
Day 19 – In your bags/bank
Day 20 – If this was your last day playing WoW, what would you do?

I have to admit I wasn’t convinced when Mr Harpy pointed out World of Warcraft on the shelf. Prior to that point, the only computer games I’d played seriously were first person shooters and I had mixed feelings about the multi-player aspect of the game*. We picked up one copy and brought it home and got it installed. In fact at first I wasn’t convinced at all, we died to owls, spiders (lots and lots and lots of spiders) and cats. We got lost in caves and fell off things. There were other people with weird names running around and everything seemed dark and depressed. Oh and did I mention the dying to random things. In fact I think I gave up between levels 4 and 10, by which time Mr Harpy had found a guild, a boat to Auberdine and discovered sea monsters. In the end it was the baby Loch Ness monsters and the sheer size of the world which dragged me back in. At first we thought Teldressil seemed huge and so finding it out that it was just a tiny acorn compared to what else existed out there for us to explore…. well that took our breathe away.

It didn’t take long until sitting sharing a character wasn’t good enough and I went out and bought my own version of the game. I promptly rolled a Warlock and then discovered PvP….. the rest as they say is history.

*In fact thinking about it, I still do have my reservations about that area of the game. In many ways my comfort zone is playing pretty much solo because that way if I screw up, there is no one there to see it. Plus in what I’m doing now which is primarily random battlegrounds, everyone else seems to be doing the same, i.e playing “interestingly” or worse. Sure I miss raiding, or rather I miss feeling like part of a team but then I’m too insecure to play well with others because at the slightest hint of a mistake, I’m fighting the urge to delete my character. It’s weird because in real life, I’m actually far more confident or perhaps I’ve just got a whole lot better at hiding it. I deal with confrontations on a daily basis, people screaming abuse in my face, crying, screaming and throwing blame around like candy but that’s fine, it’s roughly what I get paid for but switch that to an on-line situation and I struggle to cope. Maybe it’s because I know I’m good at my job but less convinced about WoW or perhaps it’s because I know I suck at WoW and I hate having it pointed out. Who knows, maybe I’m just weird..

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