Snow is good for a number of things: making journeys take four times as long as they should, turning your limbs purple (which is a good solid hour of amusement right there), and giving thousands of budding artists a means of expressing their creative side without ruining the carpet. But perhaps its best use is when it is compacted into a ball and hurled at your friends/enemies/passing old ladies. Fortunately for us all that there is a game we can all play when the snow is a bit thin on the ground and we need to practice our aim. Because you never know when an impromptu snowball fight will break out...
While most of the important features are labelled above, one important feature is not: the little spattering of snow you see drifting down the screen. This is more important than it looks as it shows you how hard the wind is blowing and in which direction, which affects the flight of your snowballs. While the wind doesn't really have very much effect on the snowballs you throw at targets that pop up over the wall, it plays a bigger role when you start chucking them at Dieter, which we'll get to later.
What To Aim For
Not everybody that sticks their face over the wall is fair game to get a snowball in their chops, however much they seem to be asking for it.
Any of these guys above are fair game; they will pop up from behind the wall at random and hover to and fro for a few seconds before disappearing from view again. At the beginning of the game they will hang around for a good few seconds, but as you get into later levels they pop up and then vanish much faster. If you manage to hit them directly in the face then you will earn yourself 10 points, however if your aim is a little off but you still manage to hit them then you will be awarded 5 points instead. Keep an eye out for the Meepits; they're a smaller target and so harder to hit but a direct hit on them will give you 20 points, with an indirect hit earning you 10 points.
During your game you will likely notice these two faeries putting in an appearance every now and then:
You're not allowed to hit these two, perhaps because Illusen is nice and helps Meridell out in times of war and the Soup Faerie is kind to the poor and needy. Hitting either of the faeries will cost you 10 of your precious snowballs, and if you don't have 10 snowballs to forfeit then it's game over!
You might occasionally come across the great Ollie (in a santa hat) popping up with the rest. The chances of him appearing are about 1 in 1000, so don't waste time waiting for him! A direct hit will net you 50 points while an off-target hit awards 25 points.
The concept of the game is very simple. You start off with 50 snowballs; you throw them at the Neopets that pop up over the wall. If you hit them you get points, if you miss them you don't. Once you run out of snowballs to throw your game ends.
As already stated, if you hit a faerie then it will cost you dearly in snowballs. But thankfully there is a way of earning more. Every now and then Dieter the Polarchuck will parachute down out of the sky and if you can hit him then an extra 10 snowballs will magically be added to your reserves. Hitting him requires a little bit of skill as you will need to take into consideration the direction and strength of the wind to get your snowball to arc just right to hit him. With a little practice you should get the hang of that though and then it's just a matter of waiting for him to appear when you find yourself running low on ammunition. The screen will completely clear of pets popping up and down for a second just before he appears; it's not much of a warning but it can give you a chance to stop hurling snowballs in time to look for him.
There aren't actual levels in the game so much as a steady increase in difficulty as you progress. With each set of 50 points that you earn, the "level" counter goes up; as it increases, the pets appear and disappear much more rapidly and move faster up and down the wall. There is no time limit in the game, so you can spend as long as you need to waiting for a pet to pop up in a position where you can aim and hit them before they vanish.
It's easy later on in the game to get a bit trigger happy and fling snow at anything that moves, leading to a few unhappy faeries with snowball remnants on their faces. The best advice would be to take your time; things might be leaping up and down all over the place but try to focus only on the ones you can realistically hit and ignore the rest. If all else fails, you can type in snowghettiandmeatball to gain an extra 10 snowballs at any point during your game (although this can only be used once per game and only when you have 40 or less snowballs remaining).
POW! Right in the kisser!
On the main game screen you will notice an odd little orange smudge between the 'H' and the 'T' of the title. Click on it and the awesome Ollie will come hurtling down the ski jump and land head-first in the snow.
If you leave the screen open for a while an angry-sounding Snow Beast will come wandering out of the cave and prowl across the screen.
This game guide was written by: Weepit