Archive for the ‘Wrath of the Lich King’ Category

I’ve fallen into a WoW lull over the past several weeks. I’ve got an unusually light course load at school this semester — but a health condition that has developed, and a medication that I’m taking to help with this condition, have made it so that I just can’t stay up late like I used to. When I’m finished with my evening slate of schoolwork, I more and more frequently just go to bed. If the Emissary reward isn’t 2K gold, or I’m not working on outfits for the next Sunday Mog Show, I don’t have much motivation to stay up late in Azeroth.

Are there things I could be doing? Sure. Deaths of Chromie to get the Timelord title and the special Mog set, N’Zoth Assaults and Horrific Visions to get the second upgraded appearance of the Shroud of Resolve, Legion dungeon & raid Mog farming, alt leveling… I just… don’t feel like it. Not even parking alts in the Caverns of Time for quick & easy Trivia Quiz XP.

As for the upcoming pre-launch events, well, I hated the zombie invasion event the first time around, in the run up to Wrath of the Lich King. I didn’t at all appreciate the disruption to my regular patterns of play, especially when I tried to escape the chaos in Orgrimmar by attempting to level an alt (most likely Kerisa) in Stonetalon Mountains and some level 70 jerk deliberately brought the Zombie Plague to Sun Rock Retreat.

So I’m probably not going to be playing much WoW between now and the actual launch of Shadowlands. Sure, I’ll take Kaelinda out to do the pre-launch event story quests in Icecrown and experience that lore at least once. I’ll most likely also put forth the effort to collect the cloth version of the Mog set from the event, because if I don’t, I’ll probably wish later that I had.

Everyone else, however, is going to retreat to their Garrisons — and characters who don’t have Garrisons yet I’ll just not log on.

I do have a special installment of the Sunday Mog Show planned for the 22nd, but things will probably be pretty quiet around here until then.

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There are several handsome green and brown leather kilts of which I am quite fond.


Giant-Friend Kilt

Roiling Gardens

Shoulders of the Roiling Inferno, Blessed Elunite Coverings, Dragonmaw Emergency Strap, Giant-Friend Kilt, Marshseeker Gloves, Staff of the Verdant Circle

Overgrowth Tender

Mantle of Gnarled Overgrowth, Shaladrassil Tunic, Overgrowth Cutter Belt, Giant-Friend Kilt, Master Brewer’s Gloves, Kihrawr’s Scratching Post


Guise of the Tidal Lurker, Hateful Gladiator’s Wyrmhide Spaulders, Shroud of Nature’s Harmony, Orgrimmar Belt, Giant-Friend Kilt, Thunderlord Gloves, Stolen Idra’kess Drape, Green Workman’s Shirt, Thunder Eagle Staff


Breeches of Natural Aggression

Jungle Chronicler

Shoulders of the Roiling Inferno (LFR), Sunglow Vest, Dragonmaw Emergency Strap (LFR), Breeches of Natural Aggression, Shardtooth Gloves, Zangarra Scepter, Sunsworn Transcription

Gaudy Conifer

Darkbrand Shoulders, Gaudy Winter Veil Sweater, Toenail Belt, Breeches of Natural Aggression, Oilrag Handwraps*, Boots of the Flowering Earth, Brutality Blade


Darkbrand Shoulders, Grizzly Jerkin, Toenail Belt, Breeches of Natural Aggression, Oilrag Handwraps* + Efrem’s Bracers, Boots of the Flowering Earth, Brutality Blade

Conifer Cone

Darkbrand Shoulders, Grizzly Jerkin, Toenail Belt, Breeches of Natural Aggression, Oilrag Handwraps* + Cataclysmic Gladiator’s Bindings of Meditation, Conifer Cone Staff


Nature-Stitched Kilt

Misty Moss

Feathermoon Headdress, Wild Shoulderpads, Imperial Leather Breastplate, Green Belt of Hushed Wisdom, Nature-Stitched Kilt/Blackfathom Leggings, Ranger gloves, Swift Cenarion Footwear, Aspirant’s Staff of Harmony/Scar-Shell’s Scintillating Staff

Samaramon’s Black-and-Yellow

Contender’s Wyrmhide Shoulders, Pozzik’s Vest, Serene Yellow Belt, Nature-Stitched Kilt, Frostwolf Scout’s Gloves, Gouging Staff


Somber Shawl, Headhunter’s Armor, Thatch Eave Vines, Nature-Stitched Kilt, Runesworn Grips, Sablehide Footwraps, Illidari Warglaive


Clefthoof Hide Leggings

Everlasting Efflorescence

Crown of Boundless Courage, Cenarion Spaulders, Chestpiece of Malorne, Vine Waistband, Clefthoof Hide Leggings, Forest Leather Gloves, Forestlord Striders, Gossamer-Spun Greatcloak, Staff of the Verdant Circle


Kilt of Immortal Nature

Nimble Serpent

Bladefang Spaulders, Nimbletoe Chestguard, Green Belt of Hushed Wisdom, Kilt of Immortal Nature, Throat-Ripper Gauntlets, Drape of Smoldering Dreams, Gouging Staff

Alunaria’s Adornments

Conquerors Nightsong Cover, Mantle of Gnarled Overgrowth, Shaladrassil Tunic, Hozen-Speed Waistband, Kilt of Immortal Nature, Shardtooth Gloves, Dreadlord’s Tattered Wingcover (LFR), Embroidered Shirt, Tabard of the Dreamweavers, Warmongering Combatant’s Battle Staff


Blazewing’s Furious Kilt

Flickering Forest

Guise of the Tidal Lurker, Flickering Shoulderpads, Supple Vest (2-655), Green Belt of Hushed Wisdom, Blazewing’s Furious Kilt, Poorly Styled Gloves, Smoot’s Shredded Smock, Halberd of Desolation

Sha Stalker

Cursed Vision of Sargeras, Supple Shoulderguards (1-640), Raiment of Silent Stars, Cord of Sha Savagery, Blazewing’s Furious Kilt, Gloves of the Blind Stalker, Fist of the Deity

Slayer of Manifestations of Negative Emotions

Cursed Vision of Sargeras, Supple Shoulderguards (1-640), Serpentskin Armor, Cord of Sha Savagery, Blazewing’s Furious Kilt, Gloves of the Blind Stalker, Treads of Illidari Supremacy, Ethereum Phase Blade

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Because of the association of some of the drawings with stories, this idea to clean out my backlog of unposted art is turning into cleaning out some of my backlog of unposted stories, too.

Way back when, I wrote a story about the experience of my Forsaken Mage. With Cataclysm and the Worgen and Goblins already announced at the time I wrote the story, the story ended with my Forsaken looking at the Greymane Wall and remembering that she had an older sister who lived in Gilneas. After Cataclysm launched and I’d played through the Worgen starting zone, I started writing a story about my Worgen Mage and how she was separated from her family, then unexpectedly reunited with her now-Forsaken sister. I wrote fragments of significant events in the story, but never quite managed to get them all completed, transitioned, and tied together. I also began a story intended to explore my Forsaken character’s reactions to the new storyline for Silverpine introduced in Cataclysm, culminating with her perspective of the meeting with her sister. After I’d got it started, though, it turned out that I wasn’t really all that interested in writing it, and so I never continued it.

I was working from a personal headcanon timeline that assigned to each expansion an amount of calendar time corresponding to the real-world calendar time that we actually spent playing it — roughly two years per expansion, rather than the one year per expansion in the official chronology. When the Ultimate Visual Guide came out, I realized that I had my timeline entirely wrong because I’d underestimated the amount of time between the end of the Second War and the beginning of the Third War. Now my story didn’t work at all. I suppose I could still make it work if I retcon my original story about my Forsaken and let the sisters be a decade or so older instead of relatively young women…

If I’d ever properly finished these stories, I would have posted them in multiple parts, so all the unfinished bits and pieces make a rather long post. I’ve put them behind a cut and you can read them or not as you please. (more…)

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What would a Taunka woman look like if she had the same facial structure as a Taunka man?
What does a Yaungol woman look like?

Perhaps something like this:

The Tauren is wearing the Lunar/Twilight/Raincaller set. The Taunka’s clothing is that worn by the guards at Camps Winterhoof and Oneqwah. The Yaungol’s outfit combines the clothing of Yaungol melee combatants with the chestpiece worn by Yaungol casters.

Figuring out the relative scale of the three races turned out to be trickier than I’d thought. I initially had the notion that Taunka were about a head taller than Tauren and Yaungol about a head taller than Taunka, as I’ve shown them in this picture — my initial sketches may make that more obvious.

Based on my extensive study of Taunka and Yaungol NPCs, however, it’s probably more accurate to say that the Taunka and Yaungol shown in my picture represent the low-to-middle range of a size distribution common to both subspecies.

Taunka men are pretty consistently head-and-shoulders taller than Tauren. My player character Tauren woman’s shoulder comes to the armpit of most Taunka men, or to the elbow of the larger size used for Chieftains and the male guards at some of the Taunka villages in Northrend. A few Taunka men, generally vendors, are a bit shorter, but still about a head taller than my character. The size of Taunka women varies quite widely. In Borean Tundra, Howling Fjord, and Grizzly Hills, some of the Taunka women are the same size as the men and some of them are only half-a-head taller than my character. Female Taunka NPCs who are very old or very young women, such as Greatmother Ankha and Nokoma Snowseer at Camp Winterhoof, tend to be about the same size as my character or even a little smaller. At Camp Tunka’lo in the Storm Peaks, however, all of the Taunka women are the same size as my character — I think the developers simply forgot to add the scaling factor!

The Yaungol invaders found in various locations around Kun-Lai Summit seem to be about the same size as the average male Taunka, with my player character Tauren woman’s shoulder coming to the armpit of a typical Yaungol melee combatant. The Yaungol casters found around Binan Village are somewhat smaller, perhaps only half-a-head taller than my character. The Yaungol at Deadtalker’s Plateau and Fire Camp Gai-Cho in Townlong Steppes are a bit larger; my character’s shoulder comes to the armpit of the smaller ones, to the elbow of the larger ones, and only to the waist of the “end bosses” of Master Snowdrift’s set of Shado-Pan dailies, Uruk and Cheng Bo. On the Timeless Isle, the Ordon Candlekeepers are about the same size as a Tauren player character, and Ordon Yaungol get continually larger as they get tougher going up the mountain, until one reaches Ordos, who is, of course, a Boss. On the extreme other end of the scale, the guards of the Bataari war banner located between Binan Village and the Chow Farmstead are very small indeed — smaller than my player character Tauren woman — so small that I think they must be mere youths, approximately equivalent in maturity to a twelve year-old human.

I always feel so bad about having to kill them all! And yet, it seems more merciful to do so. If you burn the banner after having only killed the pair you passed by on your way into the camp, the others yell “Ur-Bataar, Help!” and run around, panicked, until they run into the fire on the banner and catch fire and die anyway. This sad behavior reinforces my feeling that these wee little Yaungol are just children!

I can easily imagine this duty of guarding the war banner as one of the first martial opportunities a young Yaungol receives, a first step away from the chores of tending the camp and toward being a warrior who can help defend the tribe. If having enough strong healthy warriors is so important to Yaungol society and survival that even disputes of leadership are settled by non-lethal ritual combat (see “Dominance”), I cannot imagine Yaungol women being anything but warriors right alongside the men. I would guess that a Yaungol woman only rests from active warrior duties for the few weeks immediately before and after the birth of an infant, and that those who are too young for combat are mostly cared for by those who are too old or honorably disabled for combat.

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In her recent post on the imbalanced gender representation of NPCs in Azeroth, Akabeko said:

In Cata we met the sweet Tol’vir cat dudes, who lacked for dudettes but not offspring (I like to think they reproduce by budding those magnificent pecs.)

which reminded me of something she said in her early-Cataclysm review of Uldum:

No female Tol’vir? Would it really be so hard to shrink their biceps, strap some watermelons to their chest, and bring it all together with a tastefully tattered leather bikini?

That quote — and the image it spawned in my brain — has been stuck in the back of my imagination for over a year now, so when her new post brought it to mind again, I really couldn’t delay putting it on paper any longer.

I have too much of a stylistic preference for more realistic anatomy, however, and the best I could manage was coconuts, not watermelons.

Then I started thinking about other NPC races that really ought to have females represented among them.

Male Tuskarr are so round and roly-poly that I bet female Tuskarr would give great hugs — perhaps the best hugs that any adventurer would ever get (at least until they meet the Pandaren)!

The male Broken model uses the same armature & animations as the male Tauren model, so it is really quite easy to imagine a female Broken by making similar alterations to the female Tauren armature.

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A couple of pieces of gift art I’ve done recently.


Millya, Vidyala, and Vosskah


the Ysiel’thar sisters, Saxsy and Traxy, from I Like Pancakes

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one of these days I’ll manage to draw Night Elf ears of the appropriate length and curvature… most of the time, as in this case, they end up more like Troll ears

Tam wrote, some time ago, about how the Night Elf version of the DK quest “A Special Surprise” is a sucker punch to the gut compared to the other races. Which it is — but to me, the most intriguing part is the idea of a Night Elf as a child. And not just any child, but a small child. How long has it been since infants and children were a numerous and common sight amongst the Kaldorei? Most Night Elves currently living are probably thousands of years old. Even the “young ones” are likely to be in their hundreds. I imagine that a Night Elf child would be a rare and precious treasure.

Ever since Tam wrote that post, I’ve been tempted to roll a Night Elf DK for myself. That, and I’ve also always rather liked that gray-green is one of the NE DK haircolors — a dulled version of the bright green of living Night Elves, how appropriate! So when Alas began talking up the Eff the Ineffable Fishing Extravaganza, I hopped on over to Azuremyst and created Katelaira (a name recycled from my former Blood Elf DK).

Like her predecessor Kaumalea, rolled on Kael’thas to participate in BBB’s Raid for the Heart, she probably won’t outlive the event for which she was created very long.

I drew the picture without using references, so the adult doesn’t look like Yazmina Oakenshield, the DK quest NPC — perhaps she is indeed the child’s actual mother, a Priestess of the Moon.

The funny thing about me going to Alas’s shindig is I only contributed several hundred fish or so — maybe a thousand — to my former guild’s “That’s a Lot of Bait” achievement. Being a mana-hungry healer, I spend most of my fishing time out on open water trying to catch Deepsea Sagefish, and when I’ve caught my weekly supply of those, I’m usually tired enough of fishing to not want to spend more time fishing pools.

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In a former life, I patrolled the forests of Quel’Thalas as a Ranger under the command of Sylvanas Windrunner, stalking our ancient enemy, the Amani Trolls.

I was on leave in Silvermoon City, visiting my cousins, when the Scourge attacked. Practically on the doorstep of the Sunwell itself, I drew on its power more strongly than I ever had before as I battled to defend my city. When Arthas fouled the sacred waters by using them to raise the lich, Kel’Thuzad, the magical backlash overwhelmed my mind and I fell into darkness.

I awoke to the most intense pain and cold I had ever experienced. Then a rush of tremendous power filled the aching void; in my anguish and misery, I accepted it without questioning the source.

Of what came after, I remember nothing, until the Lich King’s anger when Sylvanas shook off his control and took hundreds of others with her thinned the fog over my mind. Then, scattered snatches — dark visions of mayhem and conquest, terrible triumphs, the last enclave of the Scarlet Crusade in the Plaguelands burning —

— rushing on Light’s Hope Chapel, the Ashbringer rebelling in Highlord Mograine’s Hands, Tirion Fordring appearing in a blaze of light, the Lich King repulsed, from the ashes of betrayal upon betrayal… freedom.

Upon regaining my self-will and my own mind following the Battle for Light’s Hope Chapel, I felt like I had woken from one nightmare into another only slightly less terrible. I grieve for my homeland, lying in broken, plague-clouded ruins. I grieve for my people, for the splintering of the remaining Quel’dorei, already so few, into so many warring factions — the high elves, now organized into the Silver Covenant; the Sin’dorei, armed against their former brethren as the Sunreavers; the Sunhawk felblood devotees of Kael’thas; the Scryers — in the wake of Prince Kael’thas’s increasingly desperate decisions.

I have found that the strongest “positive” emotion left to me is loyalty — but even that is fractured. While I cannot describe anything I feel now as “love”, my few remaining blood relatives are precious to me and I will defend them fiercely against all threats. I am fervently devoted to serving Sylvanas, my leader in life and my hero and liege in undeath, and defending Quel’Thalas as best I can; these loyalties are stronger now than they ever were before the Scourge. Yet I also feel that I owe a great debt of allegiance to the humans, Tirion Fordring and Darion Mograine, for their role in freeing me from the bondage of the Lich King.

Since regaining my freedom, I have sought to destroy the Scourge and the agents of the Lich King wherever I find them and have sufficient strength to fight them.

My name is Dark Ranger Katelaira.

I am Sin’Dorei.

I am Forsaken.

I am a Knight of the Ebon Blade.

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