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A man who asked youths to stop throwing snowballs at a window suffered a fractured skull when the gang attacked him.
The group were throwing snowballs against the windows of a flat in Waterlooville, Hampshire, when the 31-year-old man approached the youths and asked them to stop.
They knocked him to the ground and repeatedly punched and kicked him, fracturing his skull and causing facial injuries.
Police are now hunting the teenagers in connection with the attack that took place in a busy precinct on December 19.
Detective Constable Emma Cooke said: "This was a vicious attack which left the victim with two fractures to his skull.
"At this stage we believe three youths were responsible for the assault, all three of them were white and aged between 15 and 18."