"But Autumn, why'd you do the contest this way?"
Well, valid question, and you deserve an answer. There's a couple of them.
1) KingsIsle-You see, it's only by KingsIsle's good graces that I'm still an "Official" Fansite. I've not always been the 'representative' I should have been. I wandered away, and blogged elsewhere. If KI had decided to remove me, I would have understood, completely. Let me tell you this: KI has the best community support of any MMO, bar none. I learned this "The hard way".
I view the privilege of hosting a contest on KI's behalf as a Gift that requires the best I can offer. Hours have been spent in this contest's creation, and that's *my* "Thank You" to KingsIsle.
2) You Guys - No matter *how good* a company is, the Player Community can "make or break" a game, and you've all truly "made" W101 the Jewel that it is. You're the lifeblood of The Spir@l.
That being said, I would be doing both you and KI a disservice to simply 'toss codes in the air'. This is in no way a reflection on other site's contests, simply the motivating rationale for my own.
I've said, from Day One that you're gonna "Earn your wings", and I meant it.
Through all that I've thrown at you, you've proven yourselves, and demonstrated "Raven"-like qualities, the same qualities that make you a good student at Ravenwood :
By coming back, day after day, you've demonstrated Persistence.
By handling my relentless 'shenanigans', you've demonstrated Patience.
By "playing along" you've demonstrated Playfulness, and a sense of 'fun'
By solving my hints you've demonstrated Cleverness, and Adaptability
Now, based on that alone, by my reckoning, you've ALL "Earned your wings". However, There are only 15 Swiftshadow Wings to be had. Hence, your final hurdle, The Forge. Here, you will demonstrate your Planning and your Swiftness. May those qualities serve you well, and may you look back at this time we've spent with some measure of bemusement every time you see Swiftshadow Wings in-game.
So, I thank you very much for participating, and I hope you'll visit HiaG occasionally. And I wish you Best of Luck at The Forge.
Homework in a Graveyard
With my thanks to KI, and to you, the player; your final 'feather'
Good luck, and Thank you.