Speculation on the Original Source for the Sprite Darter Set - BlizzCon Virtual Reward? Dreamgrove Murder Mystery?
Blizzard announced the
Sprite Darter's Wings Transmog Set
this week as a new shop item and reward for a recurring six month subscription. As transmog on the Blizzard shop is extremely rare, players have begun speculating this set was originally intended to have another source.
In this post we'll look at the possibility that the Sprite Darter Set was originally intended for BlizzCon 2020, or perhaps an unused Dreamgrove Murder Mystery questline. However, there's a strong argument to be made that it was intended for the pre-patch all along.
BlizzCon Virtual Reward
One popular argument on Reddit is that the Sprite Darter set was meant to be one of the BlizzCon 2020 virtual ticket rewards, similar to the
Wendigo Woolies set
from BlizzCon 2019. The woolies were inspired by
, a battle pet hailing from the mountains of Drustvar, and the Sprite Darter set could likewise be a reference to Ardenweald, a zone that would likely have been featured at BlizzCon 2020 along with the Shadowlands launch. With BlizzCon 2020 now cancelled, that would free up some rewards to distribute elsewhere in late 2020 or early 2021.
Although it is a good theory, it's worth noting that the woolies have explicit BlizzCon branding on the zipper, which is absent on the Sprite Darter set, which may indicate that it was not intended for that event.
Dreamgrove Murder Mystery
decrypted the Sprite Darter Set in early Shadowlands alpha
, but the encrypted files were added much earlier in Patch 8.2.5. This patch also added unused details on a Dreamgrove Murder Mystery, featuring the Sprite Darter Brightwing.
The Sprite Darter set thematically fits a lighthearted Dreamgrove questline, so it's plausible that it was originally tied to a quest which simply never made it to live servers. The recent paid collectable
was tied to the quest
, so the Sprite Darter set have had a similar Blizzard promotional item and quest. Below you can find all the datamined text:
Tradewind & Crow: Dreamgrove Detectives
NEW Stage 1:
Don't Wake Naralex
Play Don't Wake Naralex.
NEW Stage 2:
A Tragic Wail
Find the source of the cry.
NEW Stage 3:
A Different Point of View
Let Arthur tell the story.
NEW Stage 4:
See if anybody has any information about the murder.
NEW Stage 5:
Nose to the Ground
Use your senses to search for clues.
NEW Stage 6:
Following the Trail
Thisalee has a lead! Go see what she found.
NEW Stage 7:
The Vicious Murderer
Track down the murderer and bring him to justice!
So we were hanging out in the Dreamgrove, playing our favorite game...
Hey Thisalee! Let's play Don't Wake Naralex!
For the last time, knock it off!
Hmm... no reaction. Let me try!
Mm... Muyoh, leave me... to my studies...
Hah! Still asleep. Your turn again, Thisalee.
Then suddenly, we heard a yell!
Ha ha! Got you again. Bye Naralex!
Oh no!!!! Somebody help! Quick!
You poor little babies... how could anybody do this?!
Mylune! What happened?
Oh Arthur it's just the most awful thing! Somebody brutally murdered these poor little bunny wunnies!
Alright, who's got another idea?
Did you hear that, Thisalee? Let's go see what happened!
These poor little bunnies... who would murder such innocent babies in cold blood?
Did you see anything else? Any clues as to who did this?
" All I saw is these poor, teeny weeny little babies... with their little twitchy noses... and cute little wittle paws...
<Mylune breaks into tears.>"
Don't worry, Mylune. Leave it to us! Don't worry, Mylune. Leave it to us!
Thisalee, let me tell $n this part! Please?!
Ugh... fine, go ahead.
And with that, Thisalee and I were on the case!
We decided to start by talking to some of the other druids. Somebody must have seen something!
Have you seen any bunny murderers around the Dreamgrove?
I have heard about the murdered rabbits, but have seen nothing with my own eyes. Perhaps you should take wing and search from the skies?
We will keep our eyes open, Skylord!
Greetings, young druids. Where does nature lead you today?
Do you know who would murder bunnies in cold blood?
I fear the reason you ask me. I assure you that I would never partake in such brutal massacre, nor would my fellow Gilneans. Perhaps you should partake in acquiring some manners?
Oh no Celestine, don't get us wrong! We would never assume... uh...
Arthur... maybe we should go.
If somebody in the Dreamgrove murdered some bunnies, who do you think it would be?
Just because I be a feral druid don't mean I be attackin' critters! What about you, cat-boy? You be killin' for fun?
For the record I do NOT kill bunnies.
Also... Zen'tabra is very scary.
Hi friends! What can Brightwing do for you?
Bunnies have been murdered in the Dreamgrove! Have you seen anybody suspicious?
Bunnies? Yum! Where are the bunnies?
Brightwing, no! No eating bunnies!
There we were, no witnesses to the carnage of a murder in the Dreamgrove.
We decided to take Omnuron's advice and use our skills to search for clues.
I'm going to take wing and do an aerial search for any clues. You check down here!
This stick was no ordinary stick. It was broken in half and torn up on the edges. It had to be a clue!
Arthur... I'm pretty sure somebody just stepped on it.
Obviously somebody stepped on it, Thisalee. It was the perp!
Squeaky squeak. Squeaken... squeak?
Squeak squeaker, squeak squeaken!
" Squeakity squeak squeak!
Squeaker squeak, squeaking squeaky squeak. Squeaken squeaking squeak!
Whoa, Arthur. I didn't know you could talk to squirrels!
Oh no I can't, that actually didn't help at all.
I found a single pawprint, leading from a portal into the water...
Perhaps something from outside the Dreamgrove killed the bunnies!
At that moment, I heard Thisalee call out. She must have found a clue that only I, Azeroth's greatest detective, could investigate and understand!
No way Arthur, that was my clue fair and square. You were too busy pretending to talk to squirrels, while I did the work!
You couldn't have done it without me! I had to find you!
Arthur! I found something!
Alright Arthur. I found this clue. It's only fair I tell the story!
Fine... but you better make me look cool!
Through our incredible detective skills and our unending resilience, we finally tracked down and cornered the murderer.
It was time to avenge the bunnies.
We've got you surrounded! Your bunny murdering days are over!
Wait it wasn't just a regular wolf! It was... uh...
Intended for Shadowlands Pre-Patch All Along
It's also completely possible that the Sprite Darter transmog was intended for the
pre-patch all along. While we've had mounts in past patches, the
, which a new cosmetic set would seem to go hand in hand with, allowing players to try new hair colors or artifact appearances to complement the vivid Sprite Darter armor set.
This wouldn't be the first time transmog items were sold in the Blizzard shop either, as the
were added all the way back in 2013, before being removed during
Battle for Azeroth
Don't forget that Blizzard is also creating a
free Shadowlands mount
, available in early 2021, so they may have simply decided to mix things up, offering a distinctive mount as a completely-free reward and substituting armor sets on the shop in the meantime.
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