(Warning: this post contains a high volume of screenshots.)
As of Thursday March 30th the much requested Super Adventure Box (SAB) is back for players to enjoy in the land of Tyria with in Guild Wars 2. The activity will be available until April 19th. So there's plenty of time for payers to acquire whatever rewards their heart desires. Including the new Crimson Assassin weapons. If you're curious what they look like Dulfy has a gallery posted.
|The night before SAB started and people are already gathering. Pre-party?|
The first time SAB was available to the player base for their amusement, was during the time I had quit playing Guild Wars 2. So it wasn't until this post that I actually looked into the how and why of Super Adventure Box. Here's what the developers have to say about it:
Super Adventure Box began with the idea of creating the greatest-ever April Fools’ Day joke within a game. The contrast of an 8-bit looking action/adventure game inside the lush, painterly world of Guild Wars 2 made it hilarious fun. We got a little team together and brainstormed about our favorite old-school gaming memories and what we could pull together into a tiny but epic adventure in order to create a fun April 1 diversion for Guild Wars 2 players.
Wow, what a time consuming prank. However it was worth it since it's been the most requested festival ever since its' initial release. Unfortunately we will more than likely never see the last two worlds that were in their initial design due to time constraints (possibly lack of people to do development). As a person who would love to get back at Lord Vanquish, I am a bit saddened by this but at least they are committed to making sure this is a yearly festival now (which the game sorely needs more of).
|Karashai and her partner Kyna have all of the skill upgrades.|
When you first start off in SAB you have very little to work with on your skill bar. To fill in the empty slots you must find baubles which are sometimes just sitting out in the open, dropped by mobs, dug up from the ground, or in secret areas. You then take these to a shopkeeper (every zone has at least one shop and they all sell different upgrades) to buy your upgrades. The baubles also come in different values with the most common being just a +1 but you can find up to a +50 if you know where to look.
|A +1 bauble.|
Do not despair if you have previously bought all of the skill upgrades, for they are carried over from previous play throughs; for instance Karashai kept all of her skills and upgrades from the 2016 festival. However, the skill upgrades are per character, not account wide. Your SAB achievements are also carried over. Given how difficult some of those achievements are, I was very thankful for that (I can be an achievement hound).
|You can play through SAB alone or in a group|
|Kill the monkeys!|
|Hit a turtle once to make it flip over to use as a jumping block.|
|Karashai going for slide on the ice in World 2 Zone 3.|
With any action/adventure type game, you have some very annoying mobs and a lot of jumping that is involved. World 1 is fairly easy but World 2 starts getting more into timing and recognizing patterns of how the mobs act. This can lead to much frustration when just learning the path through the zones (each world has three zones to it). Also, like the old style games you have a number of lives that you are given. Once you run out your are sent to purgatory where you can either use a continue coin (I am very happy with my purchase of the infinite continue coin from the Black Lion Market) or choose to give up and return to the lobby. Continue coins are also available from the festival merchant just outside of the SAB portal in Rata Sum or from boss chests (possibly daily reward too).
After my post titled LOTRO Spring Festival 2017, I have to mention the mazes that the developers saw fit to include within the 8-bit inspired worlds. I know that there is at least one more but we never found our way into it while doing dailies. Thankfully these mazes are no where near the frustration that the one in LOTRO is. They are still there though and they are to be growled at!
|A hidden area underneath the SAB lobby.|
|After jumping through the cavern, Karashai takes a rest on a cloud.|
|The cannon shot her to another cloud where she found one of the four flags.|
|Looking down at the lobby from her perch in the clouds.|
As you can see from the screenshots above, the developers even added in some jumping puzzle elements to the lobby. Personally, I think Karashai wants her own cannon so she can go flying and gliding across Tyria...
Just like the rest of Tyria, the game with in a game world is actually not too bad looking. Especially for mimicking an 8-bit style. Thus below you'll find some of the landscape screenshots that I snapped, starting with World 1 Zone 1 and ending with World 2 Zone 3.
As you can see I had fun taking a lot of screenshots. Do I feel remorseful? Not one bit. Now get out there and go save Princess Miya.