Winter is in full swing in Paragon City and that means there are a variety of seasonal activities for heroes and villains to take part in. It isn’t quite as busy and complicated as Halloween but I thought it was still important to put together a guide so you can be sure that you’ve done everything there is to do in the City of Heroes Winter event. Each activity has at least a couple of badges attached to it, so if you’re a badge collector like I am you’ll want to make sure you run through everything at least once.
Gamester, an NPC that we have never seen in person scatters glowing presents all over Paragon City, the Rogue Isles, and Goldside. These mysterious gifts can be opened and you’ll learn if you’ve been naughty or nice. If you get Nice you can get present inspirations (more on them below), Candy Cane Salvage, or the Mystery Gift temporary power. If you’ve been naughty then you will get a spawn of snowmen called the Winter Horde. These spawns are based on team size so present hunting solo while on a team can be quite dangerous. Please clean up your spawns. This will help presents respawn faster and it will keep the zone safe for the people who are in the lower end of the zone’s level range.
When enough presents have been opened in the zone a Winter Lord giant monster will spawn. Previously he would spawn randomly when you were on a large team but this was changed in 2009. When Winter Lord has been defeated he will leave behind a huge present and a timer will start counting down. If you click on the present before the timer is finished then you will be teleported to Lord Winter’s realm for another event, which you can read more about in the next section.
There are 6 different present inspirations you can get during the City of Heroes Winter Event. Visually they all look the same but each of them gives you a different buff. You can find out what it will give you by dragging the inspiration into the chat box. You can also use /InspExecName slash command, or right-click on the present where you can inspect info and read the detailed info tab. But if you’re in the middle of a fight you’re unlikely to do any of these things. Here are the six present inspirations you can possibly get.
Gift of Experience – You will not accrue any experience debt if you are defeated. This protection will last for 1 hour or until you are defeated.
Gift of Power – 50% bonus to damage per person within a 20′ radius
Gift of Life – Restores 50% of the character’s base health per person within a 20′ radius
Gift of Defense – +33% Defense bonus to all attacks except typeless, per person within a 20′ radius
Gift of Energy – Restores 50% of the character’s base endurance per person within a 20′ radius
Lump of Coal – You were bad this year. You got a lump of coal and nothing else
As you can see the present inspirations really encourage you to jump into the middle of fights and be an aggressive player.
There are three badges that are strictly related to the presents, not counting the one for doing the Lord of Winter realm event.
Toy Collector – Open 200 Presents
Cold Warrior – Defeat 100 Living Snow Creatures (Winter Horde)
Frozen Fury – Defeat the Winter Lord
Lord Winter’s Realm
After a zone has defeated the Winter Lord giant monster a big blue present will spawn and also appear on the zone map. This present is the doorway to the Lord Winter’s Realm where a Holiday Trial takes place. This trial can also be found in the LFG menu. Battling him in his realm is somewhat of a unique experience for the game. Lord Winter has a whole lot more hitpoints than your average giant monster which means you need a lot of people and the fight is broken up into multiple parts. When his health reaches 3/4, half, and 1/4 a Winter Guardian Giant Monster will be spawned. While these Winter Guardians are alive Lord Winter and his pets become immune to damage. You must defeat the WInter Guardian in order for the fight to continue.
Defeating Lord Winter will reward you with 8 Reward Merits and 20 Candy Cane salvage.
There is only one badge for defeating Lord Winter in his realm, Lord of Winter. Female characters are given Lady of Winter.
Rescue Baby New Year
Red Cap are up to no good again and have kidnapped the Baby New Year and plan to take him to the Fey lands. If that were to happen all of time would grind to a halt, which as you can imagine isn’t a good thing. So Father Time has asked you to save Baby New Year. This mission features Snaptooth, a Red Cap Elite Boss and the ugliest baby you will ever see.
Before you can rescue Baby New Year who is locked in a cave you must find the key which is being held by a Winter Horde called the Winter Guard. Once you have the key, go in the cave, beat up the Red Caps and lead Baby New Year out.
The badges for completing the Baby New Year mission are the same as the one for the Lady Winter mission and listed below.
Father Time has another mission for you, this one takes you to Nerva Archipelago where Lady Winter plans to freeze the entire world. Lady Winter is quite powerful, but you’ll have help in the form of a group of Tuatha de Dannan.
Send the Tuatha to patrol the different areas of Agincourt then go on the hunt for the three Winter Obelisks that need to be destroyed. Once they’ve been destroyed Lady Winter will be ready to fight you. Lady Winter is an Arch Villain and packs quite a punch. Depending on your character you may not be able to complete this mission solo.
There is one badge that is specific to the Lady Winter mission.
Cold as Ice – Defeat Lady Winter
There are also 4 badges to be earned for completing either the Baby New Year or Lady Winter mission.
At the end of either City of Heroes Winter Event mission, you are given the option of 5 different rewards. These are where the badges are given out and each badge also comes with a little something extra.
Crystallized – Furry Gloves (This only applies on servers where costume parts must be earned and unlocked. Not Homecoming.)
Frosty – Furry Boots (This only applies on servers where costume parts must be earned and unlocked. Not Homecoming.)
Miraculous – Renewal of Light, an 8-day self rez Temporary Power that will make you invulnerable for a short time and protected from XP debt for 20 seconds.
Joyful – Golden Rings, 12-day Single Target Hold Temporary Power that does very little damage.
or 5 Pieces of Candy Cane Salvage.
In Pocket D there is a Ski Chalet that depending on what server you’re on may or may not be open year-round. On Homecoming it is always open but other servers may only have the area open during the City of Heroes Winter Event. This is where Father Time is located as well as the Candy Keeper merchant. In this zone, you can also take part in skiing. There are 3 slopes available. The bunny slope isn’t timed and doesn’t grant any rewards. This makes it the perfect spot to practice skiing before you try the more difficult slopes.
There are three badges for completing the Timed Expert Ski Slope and another three for completing the Timed Advanced Ski Course.
Timed Expert Ski Slope
Qualified – Complete the slope in 35 to 44.99 seconds
Accelerated – Complete the slope in 25 to 34.99 seconds
Speed Demon – Complete the slope in 24.99 seconds or less
Timed Advanced Ski Course
Surefooted – Complete the ski course in 1 minute to 1 minute 9.99 seconds
Agile – Complete the ski course in 50 seconds to 59.99 seconds
Speeder – Complete the ski course in 49.99 seconds or less.
For servers that don’t keep the ski chalet open all year long now is the time to fly out to the floating truck outside Pocket D to get the exploration badge there.
Trucker – You’ve visited the floating truck in Pocket D
Candy Keeper Event Merchant
Inside the chalet the event merchant who will take all those delicious candy canes you’ve been collecting and exchange them for something useful or fun. The prices and items that are listed are from the Homecoming servers. They may be different depending on which server you’re playing on.
Cold Front – 2006 Winter Event Log-in badge, 25 Candy Cane and 30,000 INF
Festive – 2009 Winter Event Log-in badge, 25 Candy Cane and 30,000 INF
Frostbitten – 2008 Winter Event Log-in badge, 25 Candy Cane and 30,000 INF
Gifted – 2007 Winter Event Log-in badge, 25 Candy Cane and 30,000 INF
Holiday Spirit (Scrooge on villain)- 2005 Winter Event Log-in badge, 25 Candy Cane and 30,000 INF
Joyful – Winter Mission completion reward, comes with 12 Days of the Golden Rings Temporary Power, 20 Candy Cane and 5,000 INF
Longbow Reservist (Jetsetter on villain) – Grants Jingle Jet Temporary Power, 10 Candy Cane and 10,000 INF
Miraculous – Grants Renewal of Light Self Rez Temporary Power, 20 Candy Cane and 5,000 INF
Respec Recipe – Grants you a respec recipe so you can respec your character. 500 Candy Canes
Winter’s Gift – Set of 3 travel enhancement recipes. Each recipe is 40 or 50 Candy Canes and 100 INF
Build Snow Beast – Get a noncombat Snow Horde Pet, 5 Candy Cane and 1,000 INF
Duplicating Gift – Pass along a mysterious duplicating gift for 10 minutes, 25 Candy Cane and 30,000 INF
Frost Bite – Grants buff for 1 hour that will give many of your damaging attacks additional cold damage, 100 Candy Cane and 50,000 INF
Frosty Aegis – Temporary power that grants defense to smashing, lethal, and cold for 10 minutes, 100 Candy Cane and 50,000 INF
Golden Rings – Enemy Hold temporary power for 12 days, 20 Candy Canes and 5,000 INF
Holiday Spirit – Grants 2 days of debt protection, 10 Candy Cane and 25,000 INF
Instant Snowstorm – Invoke a snowstorm, 1 charge, 10 Candy Cane and 25,000 INF
Jingle Jet – Get a Jingle Jetpack for 30 days, 10 Candy Canes and 10,000 INF
Renewal of Light – Renewal of Light Temporary power self rez, 20 Candy Canes and 5,000 INF
Snowball – Throw snowballs at fellow heroes or villains for 12 days, 5 Candy Cane and 10 INF
Winter Ward – Boosts your resistance to cold, fire, lethal, and smashing damage as well as giving slow resistance for 1 hour, 100 Candy Cane and 50,000 INF
Frozen Winter Forest
Null the Gull in Pocket D can take you to a new map, the Frozen Winter Forest. There isn’t much to do here but it is a great place for roleplaying as no monsters ever spawn there and it is a winter paradise. There’s a gazebo, ice skating, and a hot tub. It’s honestly my favorite zone in the entire game, only because the Croatoa covered in snow map used in missions isn’t somewhere you can access outside of missions.
Atlas Park is also all decorated for the City of Heroes Winter Event with snow on the ground and the lakes frozen over so you can skate while snow falls from the sky.