I’m glad to see that Blizzard took my advice and is creating some appearance control for WoW. (Ahem.) I have to admit, I’m a little disgruntled that a transmogrifier and an armor closet are being brought in now after I quit playing, but better late than never. Honestly, appearance control is in most of the other AAA MMOs and it almost seems compulsory at this point. (SW:TOR, I’m looking at you.)
I think the drop in subscriptions is making Blizzard revisit all previously denied requests. I wouldn’t be that surprised if player housing pops up in the next year despite their earlier protestations that player housing is for role-playing weenies and not cool orc dudes. In fact, I’ve seen that argument used against appearance control before by both players and developers: “We’re not here for dolly dresup! We’re here to kill things and steal their stuff!”
To the naysayers, I give you this:
On the right is how Accolade the rogue looks to others, on the left is her actual gear.
I mean seriously. Most of RIFT’s gear is a little hoochie at the best of times. The plunging neckline screams “insert sword here” with maybe a soupcon of “I lacked good role models growing up”. While Accolade appears to have forgotten pants, she did manage to strap on uncomfortable-looking kneepads. Then, of course, she topped it all off with a saucy masked aviator hat.
Compare Accolade on the right. While still flaunting a little cleavage (hey, I’m shallow) she also has combat-ready items like pants! And sleeves! And a sweet ninja-style mask!
The white shoulder shawl on Ninja Accolade was a white-level (non-special) item that dropped from a random RIFT. Whereas white items in WoW are trash that you get rid of ASAP, I was genuinely excited when I got these display shoulders. Give people the opportunity to customize their character’s appearance without worrying about stats, and suddenly what was once trash becomes treasure!
I’ve read in a few places that Blizzard is considering giving everyone access to every tier of gear for costume purposes, but I think that’s a mistake. Instead, I’d bump up the drop rates of tier gear from old pre-Cataclysm raids, and then let people farm for what they want. That makes it more of an activity, instead of just another clicky function.
Anyway, dudes, way to get on the appearance bandwagon. Friends don’t let friends quest in kneepads.