Why Gnomes are Awesome (and other test renders)

I thought I’d share this – the recentmost result of a lasting train of thought I’ve had regarding what if World of Warcraft had an implementation of the Steam Warrior prestiege class from its pen and paper implementation. I’ll admit it’s quite possibly simply my old MechWarrior habits twitching – especially with them trying to get a new one (finally!) together, but come on – you tell me that kit bash is not awesome!

The gnome in question is my newest gnome alt, taking after Areen has her sister or other relative, and this time around more typically gnomish – and classed rogue, so a set of mechanics I’m much more comfortable in – and appreciative of – than that of warriors. Of course, she doesn’t exactly get to steer a high powered steam armor in the game, but you can bet I’ll beeline for siege vehicles and glove-mounted rocket launchers.

Moving on, we have the following which is very much a work-in-progress test for how the Tyrande Whisperwind model revision might turn out – note the emphasis. It might very well be subject to change depending on where my thoughts go at the time, and this was by large a test to see if she could be made more mobile without sacrificing too much. This particular dress cut was inspired by Freya – hers looks like that, so I thought I might give it a try and see how the High Priestess of Elune would look in that very same style.

I’ve yet to decide what manner of bow I might pick for her, though I’ve been experimenting with quiver positions for more martial situations. Still, I figured while I’m just posting random imagery I might put it up so people get some perspective on what the work process is like and where things might be heading.

Finally we have this little.. disaster. It was inspired by a hair style I saw in another game and rather liked, so I was curious what Hani might look in it. It.. doesn’t really work for her. At all. Still, never know until you try, and I thought people might be amused to see an example of what happens when I get an idea that isn’t really.. well.. all that.


16 Responses to “Why Gnomes are Awesome (and other test renders)”

  1. 1 Sejavictrix
    August 19, 2009 at 18:46

    I love all your models, and the revisons get better and better!

    Just one thing about the new Tyrande though, I don’t know why but she looks really weird to me in sandals. Maybe it’s the greaves she has on with them. The metal/leather combo just doesn’t work for me somehow.

    Maybe it’s just me though!

  2. 2 Frostsaben
    August 19, 2009 at 21:29

    The new model for the High Priestess looks great, it’s really close to what I imagined it could be in the end, a skirt that provides mobility too! Great job there! 😀

    On Hani’s haircut, I don’t think it looks that bad, but you know what they say, beauty is in the eye of the viewer so diffrent people will like diffrent things.

    • 3 Nhani
      August 20, 2009 at 08:43

      It’s not necessarily that it’s bad in itself per se.. it’s just that it’s so not Hani Foonmall. I thought it might be a practical method since it’d keep her hair from getting caught up in her pack or her sword, but looking at the result.. well, I simply can’t picture Hani using that particular style. It’s just a completely different impression from what I’d intended!

      • 4 Frostsaben
        August 20, 2009 at 22:17

        True, if I think about Hani’s personality that haircut doesn’t fit her at all. If I look at it and I think that the innkeeper at that village in Storm Peaks where you get transformed into a female vyrkul has a similar (not the same) haircut. I really liked how it looks on her and wanted to try something similar for my warrior but no luck since no night elf haircut looks like that.

  3. 5 Synchronizor
    August 20, 2009 at 04:39

    While I like the skirt idea, it dosn’t quite seem like something Tyrande would wear, at least not in the Temple of the Moon setting I’m picturing her in. She’s always seemed the type to dress traditionally while fufilling her role as high priestess, and when riding into battle, she goes for the full-body armor. (Going by the War of the Aincents trilogy here, I haven’t read all of the other sourcebooks) I suppose it would fit as a traveling or hunting outfit, or some similar context.

    I must say though, I love the quiver idea. It really loks like something a skilled archer like Tyrande would wear to increase their rate of fire. Kind of the longbow analog to a gunslinger’s quick-draw holster.

    Finally, a big LOL at anime-girl hair on Hani, something I don’t see happening, EVER.

    Keep up the good work, Nhani.

    • 6 Nhani
      August 20, 2009 at 08:40

      I’ll admit I’m partial to one-size-fits-all kinds of models – it means that whenever a character needs to be updated, I don’t have to do so twice over, and – in the case of Tyrande – it means there’s no risk of suddenly seeing this unfamiliar woman looking vaguely like Tyrande in heavy armor and going “Hey.. who’s that?”.

      Also, an armored dress is a simple way of getting around the fact that I couldn’t really come up with an armor look that I felt fit her.

      Promotional art seems happy to portray her in all sorts of outfits, with one of the War of the Ancients triology covers (for a re-release, I think) showing her wearing no more than the night elven druid in the original World of Warcraft intro video, while Blizzard themselves seem to have no qualms in portraying her as wearing a full mooncloth robe 24/7 – including having a miniature where she’s sat on top Ash’alah in full dress, arrow nocked and ready to fire.

      Seeing that, I’ve wanted for some time to figure out a way where her model is still elegant and in what could be considered a full dress – but still would let her leap onto her frostsaber and ride off to perforate would-be invaders without stopping for several minutes to change. The quiver isn’t a permanent fixture – it’s going to be removable so it’s only put on when there’s trouble about.

      • 7 Synchronizor
        August 20, 2009 at 13:17

        Yeah, That’s the WotA one-volume collection cover. Honestly, that cover always kind of cheesed me off, as it shows Tyrande in a leather bikini that she is NEVER mentioned wearing anywhere in the book, seemingly just to give the cover some eye candy. It’s not an uncommon disparity with a lot of promotional art involving her, and I never liked seeing one of my favorite Warcraft characters used as a “covergirl” (I’m not a radical feminist, I swear)

        Again, I like the dress, it just dosn’t seem like Tyrande to show that much leg in the Temple, that’s all.

        However, as one who has worked a lot with 3D modeling, albeit in the engineering field, I can appreciate the amount of time that trying to give your characters “wardrobes” would require.

      • 8 Nhani
        August 20, 2009 at 13:33

        I’d initially actually intended having more two peices that sortof overlapped, though I had concerns about how many clipping issues it might caused. In the end, the reason I picked this was largely because I saw Freya having a skirt like that, and it simply not being an issue there.

        In the end, I pretty much felt that seeing night elven promotional art – for both genders – I couldn’t see that cut of dress as something the night elves would really raise their eyebrows at; perhaps even more something that might be somewhat common among more elegant wear.

        Make no mistake though, this is a render I’ve been holding on to for quite a few weeks, debating back and forth with myself and a few others whether or not it’s the right direction – it is High Priestess Tyrande Whisperwind we’re talking about – she has a lot to carry. That I’m showing it at all is probably a sign that I’m growing more comfortable with the idea that she’d be able to carry that sort of dress without making a huge thing out of it.

  4. 9 Oboe Shoes
    August 20, 2009 at 10:17

    I love the steam warrior. I was a big fan of the Mech-Warrior games. I wish I knew where I put them though. 😦

  5. 10 Zeliek
    August 20, 2009 at 11:33

    The mechanostrider legs on the Steam Warrior made me lol. I love how you designed Tyrande’s new dress, it has the leg freedom, functionality, and not to mention very sexy (good/bad thing?) while still appearing regal. Lastly the new Hani hair certainly is..neat, but only if she was going to be in an anime. Her hair also looks like tree bark texture to me because of the weird facet-looking thing in her pony tail.

  6. 11 TheNic
    August 20, 2009 at 15:43

    personally I think the hair looks great on Hani, I think she could wear it, but hey, that’s just my oppinion.

    And Tyrande, I agree that the sandals look weird with the greaves, I still think that a cloak would do her nicely, and maybe on her left hand, I think it would look nice to have a white silk glove, just on her left hand, in my head it seems classy, and on the same time common for archers, and for the bow, DON’T make it a WotLK bow, that’s not something for a priestess, I think you should keep it a simple bow.
    btw, her Tiara, is the symbol a moon or a “P”? and there is something about her face, she looks like she is made of stone, maybe a different hair color or lip gloss?

  7. 12 venci
    August 20, 2009 at 16:42

    now make the steam mech to transform into the flying enginere mount and it would be like the banshy in sc2 😀

  8. August 23, 2009 at 15:24

    I always imagined that archers who wore quivers on their hip would let them hang straight down, or maybe with the top tilted a little forward. With arrows that short, I’d think a gunslinger sort of positioning for the quiver — low on the right hip — would work really well. Not only would the nocks be easily accessible, but there would be little chance of the arrows falling out. I don’t know if Tyrande could easily grab an arrow and fit it to string, without looking, the way you have hers set up.

    Archers who wear one glove nearly always wear it on the arrow hand. They will often put a sort of leather sleeve or vambrace on the bow arm, to protect it from the snapping bowstring.

    I like how you’ve done away with the absurd back arching that Blizz has given to female elves (and orcs, and draeni) on Hani.

    • 14 Nhani
      August 23, 2009 at 16:19

      Deleted the second comment because they more or less said exactly the same thing – from what I could see anyhow. That said, one of these days I’m hoping to figure out why exactly Akismet (WordPress.com’s built-in spam filter) tends to consistently mark your comments as false positives.

      Programs, eh?

      As for the quiver, I’m not an archer by any stretch (never fired a bow, don’t think I could with any kind of accuracy or force either), so I just went on what seemed most fitting visually (pulling it down her leg looked really odd to me, with the arrows brushing against her hips and the quiver changing position greatly depending on how her legs are) and what motions seemed proper for me to emulate.

      For me the motion of pulling out from behind back, around and onto the bowstring seemed a faster and more natural motion than up, around and then setting it. I’m well aware that might just be me, though – and miming can only take one so far.

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  10. August 24, 2013 at 01:59

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