The Problems with the Midwinter Festival
Well, let me first say, that I really love the race. It's fun, fast, and a welcome change from the ice jumps back in Eberron. Plus it makes use of the existing area in a sensible way.
The rewards seem pretty neat as well. I wouldn't be surprised to see people start hoarding up Lolth Cookies for all those profane bonuses. The little polar bear cubs look really adorable as well. The item upgrades for Glaciation and Elemental Resists are neat too, though not something I'll likely use.
Now for the problems.
The first problem is directly related to the race itself. One of the buffs on the track gives a huge jump bonus. This can be useful to get some of the more out of reach snowflakes. Unfortunately it also has the side effect of giving the player Feather Fall. High Jump + Speed + Feather Fall = overshooting any other flakes on the ground. It's rather a poor race if I have to actually stop moving forward to ensure I hit the next snowflake on my way back down. Featherfall also causes some problems when going down some of the steeper ice slides, since the player will bounce a little and lose momentum as feather fall kicks in.
The second problem has to do with the mote rewards. For my initial 3 runs, I got between 120-180 motes. This is per day, and per account. Now, it's likely that I'll probably be able to keep up a mote rate of 180, but for simplicities sake, let's say I get 150 motes per day. Assuming I don't spend any of those motes on any other reward, or buy rental skates, I'm looking at a minimum of 23 days to be able to afford the Polar Bear Cub. That's over three weeks, making sure to log in every day to get the free tokens.
This is coupled with the other problem of the event. The preferred player and the VIP player can only do this race 4 times per day. It's a very short race really. Only lasting a couple minutes at best. Even a VIP will be done with their daily races in 10 minutes. Comparatively, any player could spend hours doing the Ice Jumps in the harbor if they wanted.
I can only assume this is to encourage players to purchase tokens from the Store, but I'm not really happy about that. The store is supposed to be a convenience, not as the sole route to actually get an item from a festival. I believe a couple things need to happen to make this a little more fun and less grindy.
1. Give players a few extra tokens per day, or make tokens per character instead of per account.
2. Give more motes per race.
3. Lower the cost on all the items to barter.
Either that, or make sure the Risia Ice Games are switched on at the same time, so at least players have another avenue to grind out Winter Motes during the holidays. :)
tokens and limits for VIP? NO
Just because it is an event does not mean it is not content.
VIPs should not be limited to doing this any specific number of times without resorting to the DDO store. If I am VIP, and have purchased MOTU, I have unlimited access to all content.
Limiting this is a slap in the face to VIPs and should not even have been considered beyond the one money hungry idiot who first dreamed it up.
VIPS pay for unlimited access and should receive such, or you should eliminate the subscription plan entirely.