As you leave the shattered remains of the Sky Pirate Aetherblades behind, you repair your armour, bandage the cuts and bruises from one too many falls from the top of the Not So Secret jumping puzzle, and set your sights for a new horizon. The workers are taking down the Dragon Bash decorations, and talk is of a new ship docked in the harbour, one with a new Captain ready to whisk you away to Labyrinthine Cliffs and the fantastic spectacle which awaits you there.
The Bazaar of the Four Winds is ArenaNet’s first big patch since they announced their fortnightly cycle of content updates. True to their word, following on from the success of the Sky Pirates of Tyria, The Bazaar of the Four Winds will drop on Tuesday July 9th — two weeks after the Aetherblades first struck Lion’s Arch – and will be open for the next 4 weeks, after which the Bazaar will end and there will no longer be access to the new zone. GuildMag and a select few other Guild Wars 2 fansites and community members were given exclusive early access to the content, and the following preview and attached guides will give you all the info you need to jump into this strange, bustling and dangerous new content fully equipped.
- Whats the Story? — Get clued up on the living story behind this new and exciting update.
- The Bazaar of the Four Winds — What is it? Where is it?
- The Mini-games — Learn about Belcher’s Bluff, Sanctum Sprint, and the Scavenger Hunt.
- Quartz — Learn about this arcane new crafting material.
- The Loot — Who doesn’t love shiny new loot?
- The new Achievement System — Cash in on those achievement points.
- Skyhammer — The exciting new sPvP map.
The attack on the Lion’s Arch council left a single council member dead. The culprits of this attack — Mai Trin and her Aetherblades — have been brought to justice, but the fact remains: there is a seat on the Captain’s Council for those with the stones to vie for it. Two major candidates have emerged from the people: Ellen Kiel — Lionguard Investigator and newly promoted Airship Captain, Karka Slayer, and Effigy Abuser, and Evon Gnashblade — Black Lion Trading Company CEO, gem trader, and Fun-box Flogger.
Both these capable candidates would serve the city well, but in order to really prove their worth, talk in the city is that they must secure a lucrative trade contract with the mysterious Zephyr Sanctum (currently docked at The Bazaar of the Four Winds). Ellen and Evon travel to Labyrinthine Cliffs and into the Bazaar to get to know these curious cloud-dwelling folk and attempt to curry favour with them.
The future of the city of Lion’s Arch may depend on the dealings and negotiations which will take place over the next few weeks — and you can guarantee that things won’t always be smooth sailing.
The Bazaar itself is accessible from the Lion’s Arch docks — much like when you first travel to Southsun Cove. Simply speak to the Travel Facilitator standing at the end of the pier.
When you step off the boat you’re confronted with a vast cliff-side dotted with kites, awnings, lanterns and pillars. The architecture is reminiscent of Cantha and Kaineng: because of the obvious oriental influences and the closely built-up atmosphere. Cast your eyes skywards and you can see the gigantic Zephyr Sanctum Airship docked high above you.
Due to the visit of the Zephyr Sanctum, merchants from across the land have flooded to the Cliffs take advantage of the trading opportunities and to mingle with the ordinarily cloud-locked folk. Consequently you’ll be able to pick up some familiar and not-so-familiar items as you explore the bazaar, but be warned — some of the shadier vendors across the city might not appreciate you fiddling with their merchandise for too long, believe me!
In order to move around the sprawling structure, you will have to take advantage of the various “Aspects