Archive for the Words from Behind the Curtain Category

Garrosh’s Poetry Challenge returns

Posted in EPIC VERSE, Words from Behind the Curtain with tags , , , , , , on April 1, 2015 by Garrosh Hellscream

quillandpaper

Hello, all!  Averry interjecting with a quick announcement that…well…I suppose Garrosh could have covered it himself, but he seems to have his hands full right now.  It’s just easier this way.

Anyway!  As those of you who’ve taken a cursory look at your calendar may have noticed, today is the first day of April.  And as a smaller (but soon to increase!) subset of you are aware, April is National Poetry Month.  Now granted, last year I dropped the ball when it came to commemorating the event in the person of one of everyone’s favorite Azerothian poets.  (Yes, yes, mea culpa…or, you know, Garrosh culpa.  He has a lot of culpa to go around, after all.)  This year, though, I’m making sure there will be no such oversights.  Besides, the blog has been sorely lacking in EPIC VERSE of late!

For this year’s poetry challenge, I’m dusting off a variety of EPIC VERSE that I slapped together (thanks to your feedback!) the last time Garrosh commemorated National Poetry Month — EPIC VERSE battles!  As some of you might recall, ages ago when devilsaurs ruled the Earth, Garrosh unleashed an EPIC VERSE live blog upon an unsuspecting world, which ended up devolving into a rhyming battle between the Warchief and Varian Wrynn.  (Because, you see, I actually have no original ideas.)  I ended up revisiting the concept again shortly thereafter, and I’ve been wanting to revisit it since then.  Well, folks, you’ve dodged that bullet long enough!

So, I’ll be posting a new EPIC VERSE battle EVERY FRIDAY in April — plus one bonus battle on Friday, May 1, because DON’T THINK FOR ONE MINUTE YOU’RE GOING TO GET OUT OF THAT WEEK SO EASILY.  The pressure’s not just on me, though, because I’m going to need your help to make this idea work: just like the real Epic Rap Battles, the EPIC VERSE battles will rely on your ideas for matchups!  I have a couple of ideas in the works based on suggestions from way back when, but in order to get through the month, I’ll be counting on all of you to offer up suggestions for matchups in your comments.  Feel free to play fast and loose with your selections — while blog characters are, of course, welcome candidates, don’t be reluctant to offer up other lore figures who haven’t turned up in the blog in any significant way.  Living, dead, retconned beyond recognition… anything goes!

So…start thinking of those ideas, comment away, and as always, thanks for reading and responding and making this whole exercise in lunacy far more fun than it ever should have been.  Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go find a word that rhymes with orange.

Be seeing you,

Averry

Reminder: “Ask Garrosh Anything” LIVE BLOG incoming!

Posted in Words from Behind the Curtain with tags , , , , , on February 13, 2015 by Garrosh Hellscream

Just a reminder, for anyone who might not have seen Wednesday’s post — clear your schedules for this Sunday, February 15, because at 8:30 PM EST, everyone’s favorite Warchief… um, widely beloved Warchief… hmm… uh… one of the individuals to have held the office of Warchief… Yeah, that works.  One of the individuals to have held the office of Warchief, Garrosh Hellscream, will be answering your questions on the fly during a LIVE BLOG event!

The live blog setup post will go up a little while before 8:30, at which point you’re all invited to send your questions in for Garrosh to answer.  You can submit your inquiries a variety of ways: through comments on the live blog post, via Twitter (@GarroshHllscrm), by e-mail (garrosh1337@gmail.com), through Google+ or Facebook (yes, he has one!) or on Garrosh’s page on Ask.fm.  Be as inquisitive and inventive as you’d like in your questions, but please follow a few simple ground rules:

  • No spoilers!  Remember, blog!Garrosh is still living in the Patch 5.2 timeframe.  If you want to obliquely refer to later events and throw some clever foreshadowing into your question, by all means go for it!  But please avoid point-blank references to things that Garrosh hasn’t experienced yet.
  • Anonymous questions will not be answered.  You can submit your questions with a roleplay name, your in-game character’s name, your Twitter handle, whatever, but there has to be some source to whom the question can be attributed.  (This is largely to prevent someone from anonymously engaging in…well…unproductive jackassery for its own sake.  Anyone who’s received anonymous questions on Ask.fm is painfully aware of what I’m talking about.)
  • Please hold your questions until the initial live blog post goes up, or until after the actual blogging is under way.  Part of the fun of the exercise will be for me to see what I can come up with on the spot with no chance to prepare.  You, on the other hand, can prepare all you want, so by all means come armed with an assortment of questions and follow-ups!

I’m looking forward to seeing what you all come up with, and to having a fun evening collaborating on some zaniness.  While I have your attention, by the way, don’t forget to vote for the next “30 Days of Character Development” profile, or to be thinking of potential letters to send the Warchief for his next mailbag!  Cue the handy-dandy mail submission form:

Contrary to what you surely believe…

Posted in Words from Behind the Curtain with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 11, 2015 by Garrosh Hellscream

notdead

…I live!  Well, I live, as in me, Averry.  Garrosh…kinda lives?  Only he doesn’t?  Except…he still does, here?  Until he doesn’t.  It’s…it’s complicated.  You get the idea.

POINT BEING.  I’m still here!  While I hadn’t intended to go quiet for so long, it was partly by design that the blog went on an unofficial break during the holidays.  My plan was to take a little time off from posting and to use some of that down time to get material prepared for when I was ready to start up again.  My hope was that doing so would benefit everyone involved: for readers, fewer long gaps between posts, since updates would be at least partially prepared in advance; and for me, a bit of relief from the constant self-imposed pressure to keep the production line going as quickly as (or maybe even more quickly that) I can.  As much as I enjoy writing and drawing the blog, it felt at times last year like I was putting down railroad tracks while the train is coming up behind me — as soon as I would finish a post, as soon as it would go up on the site, my thoughts would immediately go to “Okay, hurry up, get the next one done, get the next one done.”  After a while, that can make an otherwise fun experience into something draining.  That’s not good for me, but it’s also not good for all of you, who deserve to get the best quality of work I can manage when you come here.

So, I decided to give myself a sabbatical over the holidays, which ended up carrying on for longer than I’d intended.  I’ve been keeping busy during that time, though, and have managed to get quite a bit in the pipeline to go live.  I don’t want to name specific dates here and now, only because I have a couple more very specific benchmarks that I want to clear before I resume the blog’s storyline, just to make sure I don’t stumble into a new delay.  But NEW STUFF is imminent (and we’re talking about a matter of days, not weeks)!  So, in the interest of stirring you all up and whetting your appetites, you will soon get to look forward to…

  • Mokvar’s saga concludes!  We’ll be seeing the rest of what befell everyone’s favorite shaman-turned-warlock scribe at the hands of Kanrethad and Jubeka, then how the whole expedition to Blackrock Spire ends.demons  (Not without a surprise or two…)
  • Garrosh’s Earth Online guild, <Warchief>, has its first raid night!  Listen in on the happenings in guild chat when the 10-man team marches into the notorious Earth Online raid, Black Friday!
  • Remember years ago during Children’s Week, when you escorted that blood elf orphan salandria1around the world, and eventually learned she was being adopted by Lady Liadrin?  Well, Salandria is a teenager now, and is about to join the ever-expanding supporting cast.  (Shayari needs a peer to hang out with, right?)
  • Not to get too far ahead of ourselves, but after dropping the ball during last April’s National Poetry Month, the Warchief has plans for this year.  EPIC VERSE on the way…and, throughout the month of April, no shortage of it!
  • Naturally, interspersed through all of this will be more “30 Days” character profiles — and for our next one, you even get a say in who gets spotlighted.  Take your pick of supporting characters, and make your voices heard:
  • It’s been far too long since the Warchief dipped into his reader mail, so expect a new mailbag soon — in fact, you should make a point of contributing!  E-mail Garrosh at garrosh1337@gmail.com with your thoughts, questions, or general goofiness!  And, to make sure the ever-popular mailbags don’t have any more long gaps, I’m committing to a schedule for them going forward: the first Monday of each month, you can look forward to a “Monday mailbag” post.  But remember, the quality of Garrosh’s responses hinges on the quality of his mail — so get thinking!
  • Speaking of responding to reader inquiries… mark your calendar!  To kick off the “restart” of the blog, Garrosh will be fielding your questions on many and sundry topics, live (sort of) and in person (kind of) this Sunday night (February 15) — in an “ASK GARROSH” LIVE BLOG!  Starting at 8:30 PM EST, the Warchief will respond to questions submitted by you, his LOYAL READERS AND MINIONS, on the spot as they come in.  You can send your inquiries through e-mail, on Twitter (@GarroshHllscrm), via Garrosh’s page at Ask.fm, or through comments on the live blog page itself.  What you shouldn’t do, though, is send them in advance — once the live blog begins, I’ll be (um, I mean, Garrosh will be) responding to questions completely on the fly, sans preparation.  Let’s see what I can come up with on the spot, and/or how badly I fall on my face!

I know 2014 was a rather rough and uneven year for WCB.  I appreciate all of you hanging in there, and the continued support and friendship I’ve received from many of you.  Granted, 2015 is off to something of a belated start, but hopefully I’m in a position to stay on top of things better than I had been.  (Very likely, I’ll continue to build occasional posting breaks into the blog to let me get a jump on things again, but I’ll try to be better about letting you all know when those will be.)  Garrosh’s adventures continue…and, frankly, I can’t say I’m all that disappointed that drawn-out posting is keeping him alive in the blogosphere well past his in-game expiration date.  He’s a character I would never want to live with, but he’s way too fun to live in.

Be seeing you,

Averry

Back to Business

Posted in Words from Behind the Curtain with tags , , , , , , , , on August 6, 2014 by Garrosh Hellscream

Averry stepping in for Garrosh.

So…yeah.  That way-too-long July that I warned about last time?  You know, way, way back when I made my last post, back when devilsaurs ruled the earth?  Well, the crazy-busy July started kicking my ass in June, which has led to the current (most recent) lull in blog production.

So…sorry.  I feel bad that I keep having these dead periods in the blog, and I appreciate all of you who’ve hung in there through my disappearances.  I won’t promise that where won’t be any more of them (I know it would be a promise I couldn’t keep, despite best intentions), but I will promise, for what it’s worth, that I’m not going anywhere until I’ve seen the Warchief’s story through to the end.  I have a LOT of story still planned, and there’s exactly ZERO chance of me bailing on the blog before I finish telling it.  Keep hanging in there with me, and I’ll do my best to make it worthwhile.

Now then, with that said, we have a little business to get to.  First and foremost, with my schedule finally becoming a little more human in August, we’ll be’ll be able to pick up our Meta raiding ways soon.  I’m planning to resume our regular monthly Flex raid beginning Saturday, August 9.  As always, catch me on RealID (Averry#1116) around 8:00 PM EDT to join the party.  For anyone new to the raids, we try to hold them each month, on the Saturday that marks the final day of that month’s Darkmoon Faire.

Second of all, a return to a semi-sorta-normal schedule also means that I’m going to be able to resume blogging more regularly.  While I haven’t been posting these past few weeks, by the way, don’t think that I haven’t been working on getting blog material lined up for production.  In fact, here, witness the heap of posts that are currently written and ready to go!  (Yes, I write by hand first, then transcribe and/or draw from there.  At least most of the time.  For whatever reason — don’t ask me why — I write more easily when I’m doing it on paper rather than at the keyboard.)

drafts

(Right now, by the way, the main limiting factor in posting all this material is the time involved in preparing comics for much of it.  The writing is something I can do in small bursts whenever I have a spare ten minutes; the drawing requires much longer blocks of interrupted time.  Still, take some comfort in knowing there’s a full pipeline on its way…)

Anyway, the point is, I have a lot of stuff prepared for you, and will have it going into production very shortly — very likely to kick off Meta raid day this Saturday.  For anyone who’d like the tiniest of peeks at what’s on the way, I’ve edited the Major Storylines index page for Mokvar’s ongoing story to include the titles of the next several posts…

Also!  I’m sure many of you already listen to the Lorewalkers Roundtable podcast (and if you don’t, you should!), which streams every Saturday afternoon at 2:00 PM eastern.  I’ve recently started contributing to the show, in the form of letters from Garrosh as he bounces through time with Kairoz.  I believe the Lorewalkers have been running the feature under the unofficial title of “Letters from a Fallen Warchief,” though I kind of prefer to think of it as “When in the World is Garrosh Hellscream?”  Either way, they’ve been fun to write and even more fun to listen to Lorewalker Sol read in an orc voice.  Definitely hop over for a listen!  I’m writing them very much in the voice of blog!Garrosh, even if they detail events that the blog hasn’t gotten to.  Yet.  (If you don’t think I’m planting little details in these letters that I can pick up in future blog posts…well, it’s nice to meet you.)

And also…yes, I’ve seen it.  If you know what I’m talking about…well, you know.  If you don’t know, I’m not inclined to spoil it for you.  But…yeah, stay tuned.  I’ve got some work to do.

Be seeing you,

Averry

Raid Schedule

Posted in Words from Behind the Curtain with tags , , , on June 4, 2014 by Garrosh Hellscream

siegelogo

We briefly interrupt Garrosh’s adventures in Blackrock Spire for a meta-raid programming note!

In light of a few real-life scheduling considerations over the next several weeks, I’ve decided to make a change to our next few monthly friends-of-WCB Siege of Orgrimmar raids.  Those of you who’ve been regulars know the usual deal: SoO Flex the closing Saturday night of each Darkmoon Faire week.  As per our usual schedule, that would mean this Saturday.  This time around, though, I’m going to need to shift things around a little.  So, instead of this coming Saturday, we’ll be gathering for our usual Flex run on Saturday, June 21 at 8:00 PM EDT.  Hopefully this change won’t throw people off too much, and plenty of you will still be able to come join in.

One additional, related scheduling change: I have a pretty busy July in the works, so I’ve decided to cancel the usual July meta raid.  Since June’s meta raid will be taking place in mid/late June rather than the first weekened, it can to serve as our Flex fix for both June and July.  Once August rolls around (August 9, for those of you keeping score at home), we’ll be able to resume our usual schedule.  Hopefully everyone will have enough fun things going on this summer that they won’t miss our blog-raid outings too terribly much!

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have– erm, I mean, Gurtash has more drawing to do.  More from Blackrock very soon (and, yes, you’ll be getting some what-the-hell’s-been-going-on-with-Mokvar answers very shortly)…

 

Averry

Coming Attractions

Posted in Words from Behind the Curtain with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 11, 2014 by Garrosh Hellscream

warcrimes

Hi, everyone.  Averry here — no, I haven’t been kidnapped or brutally murdered.  (Yet.)

It’s been a busy few weeks for me off on Earth Online, so I’ve been mostly focusing on that while allowing myself a needed breather from working on the blog.  (Along those lines, I may try to build in a few scheduled “breaks” so that I can sneak in a little down time without making everyone wonder where Garrosh has vanished off to.  Updates as needed.)

That said, I’m ready to start rolling out some new material, and I have quite a bit in the pipeline for the next few weeks.  So, just to whet everyone’s appetite, I thought I’d make a quick post, grab everyone’s attention, and tease a glimpse at what you can expect to see coming your way in the days ahead.

First and foremost: this being the tail end of Darkmoon week, tomorrow night (Saturday, April 12) we’ll be meeting up for this month’s meta raid.  As always, everyone is invited to join in for Siege of Orgrimmar — Flex if possible, if we enough people and the appropriate roles covered; LFR (with vent snarking sure to follow) if need be.  Feel free to add me on RealID (Averry#1116) if you haven’t already, and hit me up for an invite!  We’ll plan to get things rolling around 8:00 PM EDT.

So, what else do we have coming up?  Well, mark your blog-reading calender…

This coming week:

  • Monday (4/14) — Garrosh responds (graciously, no doubt) to his Liebster nomination, courtesy of Myraide.
  • Wednesday (4/16) — New web comic: “Moving Day”
  • Saturday (4/19) — A new 30 Days of Character Development installment.  But who from among our cast will it be?  Let’s just say it’s a she…and a nut case.

Coming the following week-plus:

  • Another new comic: “The Secret Life of Spazzle Fizzletrinket”
  • New Earth Online guild chat log!  Can Bob be far behind?
  • Garrosh journeys to the Burning Steppes, Eitrigg’s son Ariok makes his WCB debut, and the hunt for Ji Firepaw begins!

Also, lest we forget, we’re just a few weeks away from the release of World of Warcraft: War Crimes by Christie Golden on May 6.  Obviously, there’s a ways to go before the blog will catch up to the events of the novel, but it’ll still be plenty interesting to get a fuller picture of where we’re all heading (as well as, um, just how much retconning I’ll need to start doing!).

We’ve already seen excerpts from War Crimes, which brings me to one last item for now.  After this first excerpt was released — Garrosh facing the charges against him and entering his non-plea — I saw several forum poster noting that Garrosh reminded them of the Joker, between his sarcastic applause and general attitude toward the proceedings.  And, well, once they went and planted that idea in my head…

srsbznss

Yeah, yeah, I know.  Still.

See you all soon,

 

Averry

Transmogs for Shay!

Posted in Words from Behind the Curtain with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 7, 2014 by Garrosh Hellscream

shayariheader

Time for the fashion show at last!  It’s taken me a lot of time to get all the Transmogs for Shay entries sorted out, but I’m finally ready to declare some winners and, more importantly, show off the full gamut of sartorial goodies that many of you have sent my way!

A few preliminaries:  Thank you to everyone who submitted entries!  It was a lot of fun to pore over your designs (even for someone like me, who has never once transmogged anything, ever) (No, really.) and imagine how they might look on everyone’s new favorite half-draenei girl.  Choosing winners was extremely difficulty, and honestly, if you wiped my memory and asked me to do it again, I might very well chose different ones — it really was an embarrassment of riches.  As such, by the way, I make no guarantees that I won’t dip into more of these outfits if I decide to get ambitious with Shayari’s wardrobe at some point.  In fact, I’d say it’s likely that I will.  With proper in-blog acknowledgement, of course!

To make the imminent outpouring of fashion more manageable, I’m breaking the outfits down into various categories.  Otherwise, the transmogs are listed in the completely arbitrary order that they ended up in the folder I keep for blog images.  Apologies if the layout of pictures gets a little messy at times; WordPress doesn’t seem to have the more cooperative editor in the world where these matters are concerned.  I’ve included links when available, and tried to link back to the blogs of any other bloggers who submitted entries (please tell at me if I missed you).

And so, with no further ado…on to the transmogs!

 

N.S.F.G. (Not Safe For Gurtash)

Somehow, I knew this category was going to be necessary.  Even though one of the contest criteria was that the outfits needed to be something that could be safely entrusted to Gurtash to draw…well…you know what tends to happen with transmog.  Still, I’d decided well in advance that I was going to include all the entries here, so let’s see how some of you sick, sick individuals decided to torment our poor, teenage trainee…

Our first questionable submission comes from Sintra E’Drien, and, well…yeah.

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Sintra, don’t say I didn’t warn you if/when Garrosh turns up at your house.

Somehow, I knew someone was going to stick Shay in a bikini.  Aliok ended up doing the honors with this number, pointing out rightly that every girl needs a beach outfit, especially with the nice beach near Sen’jin Village.  She’s right, of course, but I shudder to imagine what would happen if Gurtash had to draw this…or, for that matter, if Garrosh caught Shayari hanging out with the trolls.

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While Aliok was at it, though, she apparently went to the trouble of working up links for an assortment of items compiled by none other than Bob himself.  No, really.  Aliok writes that Bob informed her, “Dese be for Gurtash so he being practicing his art skills, hahaHA!”  Our first offering, such as it is, is for Noblegarden parties:

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Next up from Bob, Shay sporting a variation of the dress that I’ve come to think of as the Soridormi gown:

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Next, Bob digs out the Lovely Purple Dress to offer a little “celebrity style“:

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And finally, Bob gives us an option for those Winter Veil parties:

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Um, yeah, thanks, Aliok.  Gurtash says thanks, too.  Somewhat less sarcastically.  (I know, I know.  Fucking troll…)

 

DRAENEI WITH A BLUE DRESS ON (Color May Vary)

Now for some of the real entries!  First up, a look at the assortment of dresses, gowns, and robes that were submitted.  Since Shayari is a mage, and somewhat girly to boot, I figured these would be a key part of her wardrobe.

First up, we have this look from Myriade, who describes the outfit as “Shay Goes Garrosh” (note all the skulls and spikes — her father would be proud!).  It’s actually an impressive way of infusing the robe with a bloodthirsty vibe that you wouldn’t normally associate with mages, and definitely suits Shay’s background:

shaymog3

Next, a set of gowns and dresses from Kaneka.  This first one is built around the Gown of Blaumeux; I especially love the choice of matching staff.  Honestly, this look would be a serious contender if I weren’t so utterly intimidated by the thought of trying to draw it, because I know my paltry cartooning skills would fail to do it justice.

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Next up from Kaneka, an aerial-themed look built around the Windchaser Robes.  Again, great coordination with the staff; maybe a tiny bit N.S.F.G, but whatever, the kid can just deal.

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And one more from Kaneka (I would comment on what it’s based on, but I don’t have a link for this one, just the screenshot):

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Sintra E’Drien, who was a troublemaker a few entries back, returns with something a little more credible here, and provides a pretty classic mage look:

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This outfit from ZugZug, which she describes as “formal attire,” is another outfit that’s maybe possibly slightly N.S.F.G., but I’ll be damned if Shay wouldn’t wear it well:

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This outfit from Ritaba, based on the Flirtation Regalia, comes in two forms, one with a robe and one with a vest; Ritaba notes that she prefers the vest, but I’m a bit partial to the robe version myself.  Either way, it’s a terrific, understated look, though it’s another one that I worry might lose something in translation (read: simplification) into comic form.

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Rinike had posted this transmog previously on her eponymous blog (your homework: go look up “eponymous”), but sent these images along for Shayari’s perusal.  I’ll always associate this style of wizard hat/mask with early Cataclysm, Shadowfang Keep especially.

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Next up, from Toka, a classic robe that many of us will remember from our Burning Crusade days:

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Khizzara, longstanding WCB conspirator, secret identity of warrior-in-training Korrina, and author of Blog of the Treant, offers her “Spellbinder” look, complete with a myriad of angles and close-ups.  The halo is a great touch, I think, even if Shay may be a little too much of a stinker to earn one the conventional way…

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From Ayalea, we have the Green Wedding Hanbok.  (Just don’t tell Garrosh what the dress is supposed to mean…)  (Or, maybe tell him, so he’ll know to run like hell if he ever sees Garona coming at him with one of these on…)

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This simple but elegant robe from Malauch was a difficult cut.  I love the look of it, love the simple but effective use of the red and gold to offset the dark gray, but ended up reluctantly leaving it off the final list mainly due to reservations about how well a heavily-black costume would play in comic form.

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Another gown from Malauch, this time drawing on purple and green highlights with a kinda-sorta mock-turtleneck style that you don’t see all that much.

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Matakoa of Sugar & Blood brings us a vaguely priest-like look for Shayari:

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And, finally, from Repgrind (known in-blog as Giska and Wega) of Reputation Grind fame, a very cool-looking robe that also falls into the “I think I would be afraid to try to draw this” category.  (Yes, my artistic cowardice is likely to become an ongoing theme.)

shaymog45

 

GREAT MINDS THINK ALIKE

Before we move on from robes and dresses altogether, I should point out one phenomenon that I noticed while sorting out entries: a few of you have very similar tastes!  In particular, there were a handful of entries that all drew on the Astralaan Robe (or a very similar look)

First up, from Kaneka:

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Then, Ayalea had the same idea, minus the shoulders and plus a rose:

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And, this similar from Aliok…notes with a /sigh that this simple but pretty dress looks more like priest than mage gear:

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I really like this look, actually, in all its forms.  It occurred to me, though, that if you look at the Astralaan Robe closely, it’s actually very nearly identical to Shayari’s signature blue dress, apart from using a different color palette.  As such, as much as I like this look, I felt that it kind of defeats the idea of infusing Shayari’s outfits with some variety.  That said…don’t bet against me using this color scheme as a cheap-and-easy way to add a further illusion of variety to Shay’s looks.

 

THE FOOL THAT MOGGED HER PANTS

Sure, dresses and robes are the signature mage look, but Shay also needs some options that use a vest or other top matched with pants.  As some of our wisest sages have noted, after all, nothing better shows your taste than what you wear below your waist.

Our first top-and-pants style outfit comes from Beltrine, who notes that if Shayari worries about Garrosh doubting their relation, she might go with this look to drive the connection home (complete with tusks on her shoulders, and a staff that could pass for an axe):

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From ZugZug, her “Ready for Anything” look, which…call me crazy, but if you look at this outfit quickly then turn away, doesn’t it seem like something Michael Jackson might have worn…?

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Another entry from Sintra E’Drien, who clearly loves his wizard hats (and who can blame him?):

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ZugZug brings us “Battle Mage Shayari“, who’s looking pretty damn badass here, especially with that is-it-a-staff-or-is-it-a-tridenty-kinda-axe that she’s wielding:

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Another entry from Toka, who mixes her colors in a way here that makes this outfit look vaguely shaman- or druid-like to me:

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From Rakael (the alter ego of old friend Ruekie), we have a suit with a bit of Spanish flair; Rakael notes that Don Carlos’ Famous Hat would finish the ensemble…if it wouldn’t look rather ridiculous in Shay’s case:

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Aliok describes this outfit as “semi-formal”, with optional helm, gloves, bracers, shoulders, and cloak in the link, though they’re really not needed for the outfit to stand on its own:

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From Ayalea, here’s a possible “work outfit” for Shayari:

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This one is the first of a pair from Malauch, in this case providing an obvious case of an item Shay really should have in her wardrobe somewhere: jeans!

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Meanwhile, his second entry is a really terrific vest combo, one of the tougher cuts of any of the submissions:

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SITUATIONAL AWARENESS

These outfits might never see the light of day (or maybe they might!), but they’re all unified by being very specific looks for very specific situations.  Continue on; you’ll get the idea quickly enough.

For instance, in case I ever come up with a story in which our characters go sailing, Toka gives us Pirate Shay:

shaymog21a shaymog21b shaymog21c shaymog21d

Aliok, meanwhile, offers this outfit — which Shay could wear in the event she goes to a rave — with the disclaimer that she doesn’t really expect me to draw it, but just wanted to assault my eyeballs.  If my eyeballs are going to get assaulted, I’m taking the rest of you people with me, so here we go:

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In more practical terms, Aliok also picked out some pajamas for Shayari:

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AAAAAAAND THE WINNERS ARE…

And now for the big moment.  The winners!  As I said earlier, this was a very tough call to make, so in order to make things a little more manageable, I decided to break the three winning entries into three different types of outfit, with the idea being that the whole point of the exercise was to build some variety into Shay’s different looks.   So, our winners consist of one dress/robe-type outfit, one pants/vest outfit, and one top/skirt combo.  Which leaves us with…

Winner #1:  ZugZug, for her “Shay Out and About” combo:

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Now, granted, the top here is more than a little N.S.F.G, but in ways that are easy enough to work around for comic-rendering purposes.  More importantly, though, I love the fact that this combination works with a clearly distinct set of top and skirt, as opposed to the full-body robe and vest-and-pants alternatives that comprise almost all the clothie outfits you usually see.  Also, with spring approaching, this struck me as a great seasonal outfit (especially for Noblegarden…without turning Shay into a Playorc Bunny).  The semi-sorta-handbag offhand is just icing on the cake.

Winner #2:  From Sintra E’Drien, the winner of the robe/gown category:

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As I’ve said, people sent in a ton of great dresses, and I doubt that this will be the only one that will find its way into the blog.  But of all the options, this is the one that stood out the most to me.  Visually interesting without being overly complicated, elegant, just a terrific caster look.  Bonus point for affording me a chance to work some purple into Shay’s wardrobe (think in terms of the potential symbolism of blending red and blue).

Winner #3:  From Aliok, in the vest-and-pants category, Shayari’s “barfight” attire:

shaymog31a shaymog31b

A change of pace for Shayari that I just couldn’t resist.  The jeans and vest strike just the right balance between cool and casual, and as Aliok pointed out in her submission, the brassy hands (and the overall look) give Shay the look of someone ready to trade blows in some rowdy tavern somewhere.  And I don’t think it’ll come as a shock to anyone that Shay has her father’s right hook.

 

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE!

Remember when I said how hard it was to make these picks?  Well, I’m weaseling out of some of the final decision-making, and handing that responsibility off to YOU, the Warchief’s LOYAL READERS AND MINIONS.  I’ve decided to add a fourth winner to the contest — to be determined by all of you!  Check out the five candidates below, and vote in the poll at the end of this post!

Finalist #1 – Snow Blossom:  Our first contender was submitted by Dragonray from Azerothian Life, who even posted the outfit in a blog entry a few weeks ago:

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A little more formal than some other looks, but still simple and classy.  Bonus points for the off-hand fan, which will fit in especially nicely if Shayari finds her way to a clothier in Pandaria at some point.

Finalist #2 – My Robe and Wizard Hat:  From Sintra, this one is a variation of a similar outfit he’d also submitted, but with a color scheme that I thought suited Shayari a bit better (in general, I think reds and blues suit her a little better than greens):

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Besides, you know I had to toss at least one classic wizard hat into the mix.

Finalist #3 – Scarlet Sindorei Robe:  From Khizzara, this robe set includes an alternate look using a Replica Magister’s Crown for the head:

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Just a beautiful all-around look, as illustrated by some of the close-up detail shows Khizzara provided.

Finalist #4 – Antiquity:  Khizzara wasn’t done yet, though, because she still had this gem” in her pocket:

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In her submission, Kash (a.k.a. Khiz) noted that most of the pieces in the outfit are pretty optional, as the gown itself can stand on its own.  I’m inclined to agree; not only does it work perfectly well as an outfit by itself, but it does so with a style and elegance that you don’t see in many other cloth pieces.

Finalist #5 – Indiana Shay:  I knew there was going to be at least one more vest/pants combo in here, and after wavering between a few excellent options, the nod finally went to this outfit from Malauch:

shaymog40a shaymog40b

Cool, stylish, and strikes a nice balance between being adventurous enough for Shayari to wear while crawling through some dungeon and being dressy enough for her to keep on for more professional matters back home.  Bonus points for the hat (even though I’m not 100% sure it would make it into cartoon form…but I would try!), which makes me feel like Shay must be a secret Harrison Jones fan.

So, those are our candidates!  Now it’s time for you to make your voices heard:

Congratulations to all our winners, and thanks once again to everyone who submitted entries to the contest — the response was far greater than I was expecting, and the quality of submissions across the board made it much, much harder to pick my favorites than I was prepared for.  But, it’s not over yet — get voting!

 

[A few final programming notes: A reminder, tomorrow night — Saturday, March 8 — we’ll have having this month’s SoO Meta Raid, starting at approximately 8:00 PM Eastern.  As always, everyone is welcome to join in the fun; you can reach me on RealID as Averry#1116.  Since Averry is finally, FINALLY on the last stage of his legendary quest, I might try to coerce a few people to hop on a few minutes early to help me fight some Celestials..

More on the way soon, but I’ll toss in a disclaimer now: There are a couple posts coming up that will be very labor intensive to assemble — bear with me while I work on them, and I promise I’ll try to make the wait worthwhile.]

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