Trinkets from a Distant Land

A mysterious celebration from a far-off realm will influence our fine lands this weekend. Featuring iconic representations of strange quad-leafed plants, this holiday is unlike anything I have seen before. While I am uncertain what the holiday commemorates, it is clear the underlying themes are the color green and the zealous consumption of alcoholic beverages. Actually, many who celebrate this holiday in that distant land may not even know what they are celebrating, but that does not seem to stop them from having a good time!

Perhaps stranger than the foliage-tinged festival itself was the source of my information. A man no taller than a dwarf, with hair as orange as an Ascalonian sunset and clothing greener than the Maguuma jungle approached me and said to expect a "bit o' fun" this weekend. He told me there is a strange force of magic at work which may produce unusual outcomes this weekend, and if an adventurer slays the enemies of Tyria, Cantha, or Elona, there is a chance the victor will be rewarded with a mysterious item from that miniscule messenger's homeland.

When I asked about the nature of the items, my small friend merely winked and spoke of intoxicating pints of Shamrock Ale and unusual objects called "Four-Leaf Clovers," which he proclaimed would offer great benefits to an adventuring party, and perhaps even give those who use one an extra bit o' luck! In all honesty, I am not altogether certain the little man hadn't had a few pints already.

And with that, the tiny traveler vanished, leaving me with etchings of the strange items he had mentioned. I have added these images within this scroll, so you may all decide for yourselves the veracity of his statements. Perhaps you might even be lucky enough to find some at this week's end.


Double Gladiator Rewards

In addition to the portents of a strange, foreign holiday mentioned in my previous note, the Priests of Balthazar have temporarily increased the rewards for gladiatorial combat!

The Priests have doubled faction rewards for victory in the Arenas and for each individual kill. They have also doubled the amount of Gladiator Points earned for ten consecutive victories, which should make those elusive and desirable titles that much easier to obtain.

Whether you seek to gain Balthazar's faction, work towards your title of Gladiator, or simply seek the thrill of victory—make sure to visit the Battle Isles this weekend!


Random Acts of Kindness

I spent much of my week fighting in the Battle Isles. Now, I have returned to commemorate those honorable combatants I encountered during my sojourn.

In the Random Arenas, numerous displays of honor, respect, and kindness impressed me. I I Draykana I I and Rit Im A Rit kept up a good-natured effort despite facing defeat. When one of their teammates ran away and abandoned them in the midst of battle, they fought on stoically, refusing to let anything spoil their mood. Urban Spiritualist exhibited enviable humility upon winning a comeback victory. Rather than gloating and belittling his fallen foes, he simply congratulated them on a battle well fought, and went on his way to the next fight.

I also encountered two combatants in Heroes' Ascent who displayed enviable humility in their victory. Plasma Ftw and U Cant Hear My Ipod both offered kind words about their opponents' unique and effective strategies even though both individuals ultimately won their battles. These gladiators verbally supported the unique tactics used against them and encouraged their opponents to continue to think outside the proverbial box.

I also had a chance to leave the Isles and visit other areas as well. In Kamadan, Roasted Marshmallow offered assistance to less experienced combatants, greatly increasing their chance at survival. Keiji Tadakatsu offered similar help in the Shing Jea Monastery. And finally, in Jokanur Diggings, Pipen Ain was explaining the complexity of the economy to a crowd of inexperienced traders to help them make educated decisions when buying and selling items. Taking the time to help those who are less experienced is a kind gesture, which in turn helps make our world a better place.