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Troll shaman proves a lady can never have too many dresses

Never enough WoW dresses
Although my working file name for this interview was 15Dresses, there are much more than a mere 15 dresses involved here. Asukachan of Al'Akir (EU) has managed to collect -- of all things -- more than 100 dresses since the earliest days of WoW. Now, we've featured collectors and their in-game collections before, from armor set and pet collections to items tied to game lore and even a museum of gray items and assorted oddities.

But Asukachan? Asukachan just likes dresses.

"I do keep cool items around that I'd like to wear sometime (silly hats from seasonal events, cool weapons and shields, oversized shoulderpads and what not) as well as all my old tier sets obtained while raiding," explains the troll-loving Swedish player. "In the end, it really does add up to a lot of bag and bank space (and a full void storage), but the only collection I feel really serious and passionate about is the dress collection."

PlatekiniMain character Asukachan
Guild Apathia
Realm and faction Al'Akir (EU-Horde)

WoW Insider: All these dresses ... What makes a dress worth collecting? What are the criteria for a dress to become part of your collection?

Asukachan: My initial aspiration was to collect one dress of every different model in game. This was still the main objective for the collection far into Wrath of the Lich King, even though I had already failed on that point since some dresses had been taken out of the game before I could get them and some were simply unobtainable or not equippable by my class. Also, I realized that the sheer amount of space needed to have one dress of each type was more than I could realistically provide. As such, I trimmed the criteria that a dress needs to be either attractive (in my eyes), rare or have an interesting history.

The main criteria that I use to decide which dresses to get is simply whatever I find good-looking. There are some exceptions to this rule, though. For instance, the Draenic Silk Robes [are] hardly particularly eye-catching, but it is rare to find on the Horde side (as it is an Alliance exclusive from their Traveler's Tundra Mammoth), and it also has a very interesting backstory to it, where some night elves at Star's Rest make fun of the robe's original owner and his lack of fashion sense.

How much time and focus does collecting take up in relation to the rest of your play time?

Once I set my eyes on a dress that I want, I usually put all the time I have in game towards getting my paws on it. This is excluding raid hours or when the guild needs me as I still maintain the collection as a hobby and will place it second to "serious" (if you can call it that) game time and guild business. More often than not the dresses I search for are a rare drop from an instance where I have limited tries per week or similar, which effectively bottlenecks the time I can devote to my collection as well.

I usually show off my collection to onlookers in Orgrimmar as well when I don't have anything better to do and am just chilling out or standing around waiting for someone, so I guess you could say that takes some time as well.

Troll shaman proves a lady can never have too many dresses
What's your favorite dress?

That depends on how you look at it. In my collection, it's Alanna's Embrace, hands down. The model is really pretty and it's made mostly out of royal purple and hot pink, which are two of my favorite colours.

If you instead ask about my favorite dress in WoW, full stop, then my answer would have to be the Necro-Knight's Garb from Naxxramas-40. It looks fantastic, and is also ridiculously rare since it no longer exists in game -- and no dresses share its model, either, which is a terrible shame.

As an honorable mention, I should add the Black Embersilk Gown, which has amazing details and a great design overall, proving that white items can be well worth their Chaos Orbs even though they don't actually do anything.

What dress are you most proud to have obtained?

Looking at the sheer amount of dedication needed to obtain it, I would have to say Chan's Imperial Robes. It was a rare drop from a rare spawn in the Hinterlands. In the end, I just camped the spawning point, logging in every eight to12 hours to check if he had respawned and probably clocking in about 20 kills before getting my robes.

Troll shaman proves a lady can never have too many dressesWhat dress was most difficult to obtain?

Gameplay-wise, it was definitely Chan's Imperial Robes due to the sheer amount of time it took. If you're unlucky, you won't probably ever see an Alanna's Embrace drop in your lifetime as well. I still haven't seen the Embrace of the Wind Serpent drop, despite killing Hakkar a vast number of times before more or less giving up.

What dress still eludes you?

Quite a few. I am still running Molten Core to get the Robe of Volatile Power, which will never, ever drop under any circumstance, by the looks of it. Similarly, I have given up on the Embrace of the Wind Serpent, which is essentially a recolour of the same dress. I guess that model is cursed for me or something.

Tell us about your storage methodology.

I pop it in the bank, no real order, everything bunched together in the fewest amount of bags. The only exception to that rule is dresses adhering to tier or other armor sets, which I place with their set items instead (such as the Earthfury and Skyshatter dresses). I also never keep any of the dresses in my void storage, as I want to be able to take them out and wear them whenever I want. I'll happily stash away cool weapons, other pieces of armor and shields in the void storage, but not my dresses.

So void storage didn't really make a difference in how you manage your collection?

Not really, but it did free up a lot of space in my bank to put more dresses in once I could retire the rest of my random assorted junk to my void storage instead.

What other in-game features do you think would help fashion collectors enjoy the game?

Definitely more storage options. Extended void storage or an extra bag slot in our banks. Wowhead/AtlasLoot and MogIt already takes care of the search and preview features that collectors might need, and right now I don't really feel like I lack anything that would make my collecting much easier.

Adding more phased-out gear that is no longer available to players, such as the aforemented Necro-Knight's Garb, to the replica vendors at the Darkmoon Faire would be a very welcome addition, though. Also for me personally, I would love to see the new and improved dress "skeletons" added to the player itembase. The Royal Handmaidens in Well of Eternity sport shorter dresses with outstanding detail. Enabling players to wear armor/items like that instead of just pasting the texture onto our legs and "folding" them out to cover the space in between would open up a lot of possibilities for new outfits. Armor changing your character model is already commonplace amongst gloves and boots, as well as some belts, so why not allow the chest armors to accentuate your character model as well instead of just texturizing what's already there?

How does creating and collecting different outfits in game tie in with roleplaying? Any crossover there?

There's definitely a link. I don't play on a roleplaying server, but even so we do find that we have a lot more fun in game by speaking in character, even if it concerns out-of-game issues (such as adding on a troll accent to whatever I say, or referring to people via their in-game characteristics rather than their real-life ones, even if speaking about their real persona). A lot of my guildies have put on impressive or really fun transmogs, ranging all the way from platekinis to low-level, gray-looking gear to pig farmers and bakers. I doubt we would have as much fun as we do when just chilling out and talking without our different transmogs.

Troll shaman proves a lady can never have too many dresses
What about crossing over into real-life cosplay? Any interest?

I do usually dress up for the World of Warcraft release parties as my troll. For Cataclysm, I dressed up in Gamemaster's Robes (still as my troll), while my girlfriend went as Sylvanas to the Stockholm release party, and for Wrath, we just went as a generic troll/blood elf couple in random fantasy clothes/armor. We'll see what we can cook up for Pandaria, but I sadly have less time to get a suit together than I used to. Chances are high that I'll show up as a troll, however!

And when you're not playing WoW, what are you doing?

I work, dreary as that sounds! I've got a master of science in business/economy and do that for a living. In my spare time, I enjoy hanging out with friends, play games, etc. I also enjoy cooking and often have friends over for dinner followed by some gaming or going out somewhere. I live with my girlfriend, and we usually end up doing whatever the other one is doing if we have nothing to do, so our days can be a touch "unplanned" like that, but it's all good. I do enjoy taking it easy and just enjoying my time off for what it is instead of filling up every ounce of free time I have with activities.

"I never thought of playing WoW like that!" -- and neither did we, until we talked with Game of Thrones' Hodor (Kristian Nairn) ... a blind ex-serviceman and the guildmates who keep him raiding as a regular ... and a 70-year-old grandma who tops her raid's DPS charts as its legendary-wielding GM. Send your nominations to lisa@wowinsider.com.

Filed under: Interviews, 15 Minutes of Fame

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