I’ve been tweeting up a storm about the Festival of Unity on twitter, and yesterday was the opening ceremonies. If you’re not familiar with this event, it is a week long of celebrations that incorporates everything good including order, peace, and friendship. Those aligned with Freeport, Lucan D’Lere, and the other denizens of evilness are requested to disguise themselves or lie about their alignment which I find very amusing.

Why am I so excited about this event? Well you really have to be there to soak up the atmosphere. First of all it is BY FAR the largest player run event across all of EverQuest II. In fact I would even say it’s one of the largest events across EQII period. No, we didn’t crash any zones (that I know of) but there were well over 200 people clustered into Antonica for the opening ceremonies in the afternoon, with more showing up to partake in events and just mingle with their fellow role players.

This is a massive event with a LOT of planning and work put into it by players and employees of sony alike. In fact there was a Gnobrin spotting, as well as a Domino spotting. I tried to rush after both for autographs but alas their evade skills are far beyond what my level 12 dirge could manage.

The community of SOE gets involved by means of decorations for the fair grounds, which is incredible every year. This is the third annual festival, and of course Gnobrin out did himself. tents, cooking areas, merchant grounds, lights, flowers, everything was perfect.

If you’re not on Antonia Bayle but would like to listen to the public announcements (which are always humorous) and see what else is going on you are more then welcome to join their festival channel: /join antonia_bayle.festival. Of course if you’re like me the first thing you did upon hearing about this festival (since I no longer technically play on AB) is rush right out and create a character. Thankfully Malfi had some spare party clothes for me so my baby dirge didn’t have to wander around in her uncomfortable chain mail.

There is a calendar of events with times that you can find, as well as a map of festival locations. Not a role player? I’d still suggest checking it out. There are so many other stories going on that you don’t really have to have one of your own in order to enjoy the party atmosphere. If you’re a people watcher (like I am) it works out wonderfully. I heard so many stories last night from characters I have never heard of before, it was amazing. I plan on writing a role play introduction from my bards perspective later on today (depending on work, it is Monday after all).

I can not stress enough that THESE are the reasons people will play your game. The community. Sure, it is fantastic when the game itself has festivals and events but player run events on a massive scale such as this are simply astounding. The creativity that goes into it just amazes me every time.

So if you happen to be on Antonia Bayle this evening, you’ll want to make sure you catch the events! They start at 7pm EST and include Gnome punting, Antonican Idol (eep!), and Golden Lemming. The festival closes after a full day of fun and games on Saturday June 6th, so if you’ve never witnessed something like this before, make sure you head out that way.