Saturday, September 27, 2014

My Favorite Year: 2010

2010 had a little bit of everything:  a new world, a new pet system, Gardening, and a general blossoming of the game we've all come to know and love.

That Spring, I got back into the game I had discovered a year earlier. It marked a personal renaissance, but also a new era for Wizard101. Not long after I had rejoined the Spiral, a mysterious press release appeared promising the release of Celestia and an Advanced Pets system.

How exciting was that?! Sure enough, Advanced Pets was released a couple months later. This update brought hatching, derby races, and a fascinating complexity that encouraged a growing community to work together on new projects like Petnome, which debuted later that summer. 

Of course, everyone couldn't wait to explore Celestia, but that summer of anticipation was unlike any other. In the meantime, we had distractions like July's preview quests (highlighted by the unforgettable Warehouse), and the brief celebrity appearance of Selena Gomez. Even if you weren't a big fan of pop music, Crab Alley was the first underwater area and was open to all wizards who had completed Unicorn Way. Novices and Grandmasters alike got to swim "round and round" and discover a new environment.

At last, a good seven months after the press release, Celestia came to the Live Realm in late October. Those last twenty minutes spent waiting for the servers to load were the peak of excitement for every Grandmaster back then. Many new friends were made under the sea, whether testing out the new moon spells (many laughs were had with the Gobbler) or beating a new boss who had the ability to do critical hits.

Celestia was enough to make 2010 my favorite year, but it wasn't over yet. In November, wizards were introduced to Gardening! The system wasn't easy to master, but to this day I still check on my large plot of Couch Potatoes. Mega snacks, anyone?

Even in between all the updates, I quested through the game all over again with wizards from different schools. After all, I needed more than one character ready when Celestia opened its doors. In that time frame, I got to discover the sheer power of Storm, ability to stay alive with Life, and had fun soloing baddies across the Spiral with Fire.

Perhaps it's purely nostalgia... 2009 might have been my favorite year if I had been around more. Everyone loves Grizzleheim's scenery and the utility of the Bazaar, after all. But even after four years and six worlds, Wizard101 in 2010 will always hold the fondest memories for me. 

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Have a splendiferous day! :)