Winter Veil is one of the more immersive and fun holidays that World of Warcraft offers over the course of the year; it grants you the chance to ride something a little "different," turn into a snowman with a cute /dance animation, and receive gifts containing noncombat pets if you've been good and Coal if Santa RNG thinks you've been bad.
Before anyone asks, Winter Veil runs from Tuesday, December 15th to Saturday, January 2nd in 2009/2010, and this is article is about what you'll need to do in that period to complete the meta (and earn the title) Merrymaker. Unlike November's holiday, Pilgrim's Bounty, Merrymaker is required for the yearlong meta What A Long, Strange Trip It's Been, so don't slack on this one if you want that violet protodrake!
Saving Metzen for the achievement On Metzen! is a short but fun questline that starts with an NPC in front of the Ironforge bank (if you're Alliance) with Metzen the Reindeer, or an NPC in front of the Orgrimmar AH (if you're Horde) with Metzen the Reindeer. The quest ends in either Searing Gorge or Tanaris, whichever is more convenient to you.
Either zone you hit, try to do the Metzen quest first, as you'll need rewards from it for two of the following achievements.
With A Little Helper From My Friends
If you've never taken part in Winter Veil previously, what you need to know is that there are machines located outside (or in) most major cities that will turn you into a gnome in a Winter Helper costume. Locations are as follows:
- Orgrimmar: Next to the zeppelin tower to Undercity/Grom'Gol.
- Ironforge: Outside the city's main gates.
- Undercity: At the zeppelin tower to Orgrimmar/Grom'Gol.
- Stormwind: Outside the entrance to the flightmaster.
- Tanaris: East of Gadgetzan.
- Booty Bay: On the docks.
- Shattrath: Just east of the city in Terokkar Forest.
- Dalaran: Smack in the middle of the city in Runeweaver Square.
Yes, my fellow druids, you lose the costume instantly upon shapeshifting. Yes, this is an enormous pain in the ass. Yes, if you are feral, I highly recommend respeccing into Balance or Resto in order to do this, or at least plan on getting this achievement by way of vehicle combat. Life is not fair. Did I mention the possibility of getting Coal in your presents?
Scrooge (Alliance) or Scrooge (Horde)
Alliance will need to toss a snowball at Magni Bronzebeard; Horde will need to chuck one at Cairne Bloodhoof. Pretty easy, particularly because snowballs are so easy to come by around the holiday. You'll find them sold by Winter Veil NPC's in all major cities, or -- if you're such a miser that you can't shell out the 10 copper -- doing the Brunnhildar daily offered by Thyra Kvinnshal will usually net you a few instead of the polar bear mount that I have yet to see after more than a year. Not that I am bitter.
UPDATE: One our readers wrote in to note that the initial Ogri'la quest chain, while still available in the game, is no longer required to unlock the Ogri'la dailies. I just confirmed this with an alt who hadn't started the Ogri'la quest chain. If you have a character without any previous Ogri'la rep, all you'll need to to do is run them to Ogri'la (28,57) in Blade's Edge and get started.
Bomb Them Again! is an easy quest to do, but in order to have access to it, you'll need to have done an initial Ogri'la questline and will also need some Preserved Holly (which you should already have if you've already rescued Metzen) or Fresh Holly (a random reward from /kissing Winter Revelers in inns) to turn your flying mount into a reindeer. And yes, you will need a flying mount, so druids, if you've been gadding around with either version of flight form and haven't actually bothered to buy one, you'll need to drop some gold.
Chu'a'lor in Ogri'la will give you a short quest chain starting with The Crystals and ending with The Relic's Emanation. This will unlock other Ogri'la quests, among them Our Boy Wants to be a Skyguard Ranger from Torkus, which will eventually take you a hop, skip, and a jump over to the Skyguard questing area north of Ogri'la. There, Sky Sergeant Vanderlip will give you Bombing Run, and (upon successful completion) the quest you actually need for Fa-la-la-la-Ogri'la, which is Bomb Them Again! Turn your mount into a reindeer, complete the quest, and you're all set.
This is just a bare-bones guide due to space concerns, but if it's your first time doing the Ogri'la chain and you want to do the full questline with assorted lore and gold rewards, Molsan Method has written a much more detailed guide to getting yourself squared away for Fa-la-la-la-Ogri'la that I thought was extremely useful. I would recommend reading this in the event that Ogri'la is a completely new deal for you.
'Tis the Season
As with Fa-la-la-la-Ogri'la, the achievement itself is simple -- it's getting the stuff you need to do it that will take some work.
First off, you'll need the threads. The chest items and boots are fairly simple to pick up, and are crafted by Tailors and Leatherworkers respectively from patterns that can be bought from Winter Veil NPC's. You'll need either the Red Winter Clothes or the Green Winter Clothes, plus a pair of Winter Boots. Finished sets of these, as you might expect, command high prices on the AH during the holiday, so you can save yourself some money by collecting as many of the mats as possible and press-ganging a guild Tailor, or tipping an independent craftsman to make them. Failing that, the recipes only require 250 Tailoring and 285 Leatherworking respectively, and if you've got an alt with either profession, it might be more cost-effective simply to level the necessary skill rather than shell out to people making a killing off the holiday demand.
The competitive piece is the hat. For Winter Veil, these traditionally have dropped off high-level boss mobs in 5-man dungeons, and last year was no different, with the Red Winter Hat dropping off Grand Magus Telestra in the Nexus and Jedoga Shadowseeker in Ahn'kahet, and the Green Winter Hat dropping off Mage-Lord Urom in the Oculus. We assume that the hats will still be dropping off these mobs in 2009/2010, but we'll update you in the hours after the holiday goes live if we find otherwise. For many classes, Telestra is soloable at 80, but again, if this isn't true for you, there will be plenty of groups formed for Nexus and Ahn'kahet with the sole intent of farming hats. Somehow I doubt that Oculus will be the most popular option of the three even post-nerf.
The fruitcake itself is contained in a package you'll receive in the hours after completing the quest to save Metzen. Toss on your new duds, choke down the fruitcake (bleh), and you're done.
The short questline starts with Stolen Winter Veil Treats (for Alliance) or Stolen Winter Veil Treats (for Horde). These will take you to the Strange Snowman NPC at 35,72 in the Alterac Mountains, who will direct you to kill The Abominable Greench, a spawned mob in the area. Although the Greench respawns quickly, the worst part about the questline is having to tag him before someone else does, so I highly recommend grouping with other people of your faction in the area in order to get this done faster. Once you've killed him and looted the Stolen Treats, speak to the Snowman again, then head back to the Ironforge/Orgrimmar Winter Veil NPC's.
Click the link below for the rest of the guide on Winter Veil!