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The Leap Year Dragon Story (or: “The Leap Year Dragon and its impact on the wiki")
Well folks, its March 1st (MST - the time zone Backflip Studios resides in) and the dust is settled. The Leap Year Dragon is still available to breed or buy - so we can assume it will end this midnight (MST). I think it is time to recall the past few days. Maybe you were off the game for a few days, maybe you just started playing, maybe you just couldn't follow all of the mess – however you can learn a thing or two from this story.
It all began with an early discovery
It all started around the release of the 1.6.0 update (Feb 21st). Admin Tatzelwyrm found some clues in the download content of the game that there may be released a golden variant of the Rainbow Dragon in the near future (And before someone asks: She don't have to jailbreak her device for this).
With the release of the new game rules file the mysterious golden dragon got a name: The Leap Year Dragon. She posted all the info she found (including a few pictures) on the external wiki forum.
Things began to spread
We can't assume that Tatzel was the only one who found those clues. We know about at least one independent discovery in the Gameteep community. But there were also some guys who stole the infos and pics from the forum and posted them on their websites claiming to be their own achievements. So the rumours had found different ways to the wiki and the discussion on the Game Updates page began to heat up.
The evidence increased
On Feb 23rd the dragon skeleton files (the files needed to put an animated dragon on your screen) were released through the downloadable content. I did a little client magic and made the game client display the Leap Year dragon (And before someone asks: I haven't jailbroken my device either). I took a screenshot and posted it to the forum. Unfortunately I thereby gave those content thieves one more thing to play around with.
Intention or Accident?
Why had we never before rumours of a new dragon to come? Because no one ever before looked at the game files or because Backflip never released the content beforehand?
I have trouble to think that no one has looked at the game files before. All the pictures from the eggs page are from the game files. So why did BFS release the content a few days before the actual release? Was it intentionally or by accident? We can only guess, but let me evince two arguments:
Argument for intention:
BFS can release new dragons just in time. The “logic” (such as name, income rates, price ect.) is delivered with the games rules file, which is downloadable content. The graphic files are downloadable content likewise. So new dragons don't have to be in the game files at the update time. BFS is in the business for quite a time, so I have trouble to believe they accidentally released the content.
Argument for accident:
A few days after the leak the storage system for the download files changed. It is now a little bit harder to get on the content. So it looks like they realized their mistake and did something to prevent it to happen again in the future.
Whether BFS did it on purpose or not. The community was in riot. Days before Leap Day we all waited with baited teeth. Speculations made their round. How long will it be available, all year or only a day. How hard would it be to breed, it's looks like a Rainbow, has the same attributes as a Rainbow, so it has to be hard, or not. Still there were some people who believed the whole thing to be a hoax. Then there where people who believed BFS may cancel the dragon because of the leaked information. MADNESS!!!!
The Arrival (Or: The Impact)
February 27st around 20:00 MST: Bane Cane created the Leap Year Dragon Page and the first successful breeding pair reports came in.
It quickly became clear that the breeding requirements were the same as for Rainbow (4 elements) but it had the commonness of a normal breeding result. So most people had their LYD after a few tries. But there were two problems:
The first reported successful breeding pair was Panlong and Love. Of course this was a possible combo for this dragon, because it has even 6 different elements. But with a total of 17 different common breeding results and 3 rare results it comes with the high risk of getting some long breeders like Crystal (24hrs). Nevertheless, the word was spread and people began to rush through this combo spending tons of gems to speed up results.
Comments came in fast and useful comments with advises for other combos with less failure time were pushed on the back pages.
After the people got their first LYD the most wanted more of those golden money makers. So everyone speed through their combos again - but it wouldn't come. Apparently BFS has done something they never had done before and made the breeding rules so that every player could only get one LYD. There were some people claiming to have breed a 2nd LYD but we don't know by now if they were fraudsters or if the 2nd LYD was just an ultra rare breeding result.
At some point the dust has settled at least a little. Many people had their one LYD and have given up getting a second (and/or had depleted their gems). There were still some people complaining that they can't get a LYD and there were still people who sweared on that nasty Panlong/Love combo but the excitement has lowerd a bit and we were at least near normality.
Backflip had meanwhile announced that the LYD breeding window will close on March 1 (but not specified if this include this day or not) so at least we had a glimpse of a timeline and the most questions were answered.
But no one expected what BFS had in the hindquarters.
A Change of Rules (Or: "How to turn a Wiki into a Madhouse")
About February 29th 12:00 (MST): Comments rushing in from people claiming they breed a 2nd LYD - Many comments. What happened? Was the wiki under fraudster attack? No. BFS has really changed the breeding rules and now it was possible to breed a 2nd LYD with the same low effort as the 1st. This heated up the discussion even more. Many people reported their 2nd success. Many people stated back not to believe them. It took a while before most people realized that now the possibility was real. So people rushed again through combos spending gems. Those who previosly depleted their gems made purchases. Congratulations BFS, mission accomplished.
Can we blame Backflip for playing tricks on us?
Some people are upset about the tricks BFS had played. They are upset because they spend money and feel ripped off. But if you really have the feeling you spend more money than the game is worth, then you should ask yourself who is to blame? You or BFS? Can you blame the casino for not giving you the jackpot?
Backflip gave us the chance to get a dragon as good as the Rainbow with almost no effort. When you have chosen your combos right, then you got a fair chance to get this dragon without using any gems (Example: Seaweed + Firefly – about 1/7 chance – 3.6 hrs average failure time, so you get about 11 tries in the time window).
So what do we learn from that?
Let's derive a few lessons from that:
- Take rumours as rumours. When we ever have a look into the future again don't get to excited but stay alert not to miss the starting shoot.
- Read comments carefully. Read how the people reason their combo. There are no sure combos for limited and/or rare dragons. Be aware of all the results a combo can give, use my breeding calculator ;-).
- Expect the unexpected. Backflip likes to surprise us.
So this text got longer than expected. Hope you didn't loose patience. I think we can learn from all this for the future.
To all who still trying for the LYD: Good Luck and keep on the combos that are stated on the LYD page (“Breeding” is the first subsection, right after the table of contents).
To all who missed their chance: Don't be sad. I think BFS still have something up their sleeve.