New hero, Crystal Maiden arcana, Year Beast Brawl Event, and more.

We’ve been waiting for this all week, as Valve teased players with various updates, including a rather cool comic. And now, the Dota 2 New Bloom Festival update has arrived.

We had guessed the update was coming either today or at some point over the weekend, but it actually came along last night. It included the addition of new hero Winter Wyvern, along with Crystal Maidens new Arcana item set.

For those of you who took part in the New Bloom event last year, you’ll recognise the return of the Year Beast – a huge, hulking great creature, which players had to fight in a special event mode. It was a nice distraction from the usual matches, but it wasn’t the best.

This year the Year Beast is integrated directly into All-Pick matches, via the ‘Year Beast Brawl Event’.

To join a Year Beast Brawl there will be a countdown timer shown an hour before a Brawl begins, giving you time to prepare. Once that timer counts down to zero there will be a 10 minute window for you to join a match – every match joined during the 10-minute period is a Year Beast Brawl, and doesn’t affect rankings.

The actual Year Beast Brawl works like this; both the Radiant and Dire teams will have a Year Beast on their side, and every 5 minutes during the match the Year Beasts will spawn and start pushing a lane. 

Players will be able to use Ability Points they acquire  (either through buying CM’s Arcana, buying them directly, or winning matches etc) during the Brawl to boost their team’s Year Beast. Such boosts consist of better combat ability and greater speed. At the 10 and 20 minute marks the boosts will be upgraded to abilities like Stampede and Greater Hex.

Ability Points can also be used to command your Year Beast by teleporting it, granting it Double Damage, and letting it use spells like Thunder God’s Wrath.

Winning a Year Beast Brawl grants an item set and trophy, which cannot be traded, but can be gifted. Winning multiple Brawls will grant you various gifts like the new Year Beast loading screen, and shiny couriers.

The Year Beast Brawl Event runs from now through to 2nd March 2015.

Check out the New Bloom Festival part 4 detail page over here for more info.

Related articles:

New Dota 2 hero, Winter Wyvern, teased in New Bloom trailer

Dota 2 New Bloom update moves forward with fun comic

Steam content creators earn over $50 million

In other news, Minecraft Dungeons PS4 price: Why can't you pre-order from PSN store?