Tuesday, February 26, 2008

A look in the mirror

Are you vain? If someone would ask me that I'd immediately state: No! Definitely not! And I've got evidence:

  • I have absolutely no idea of how the parts of my current dungeon set look, except for the head and the gloves that I already have. Thinking about gear I only look at the function, everything else lacks interest to me. I'd never ever pick a better looking garment over one with better stats. If I have to put on an ugly batik dress with indian tails I'll do it with a smile, as long as it's useful.
  • I still don't know how to use the cloth-testing function of the game. Sometimes other players tells me: "look at this good-looking chest" and encourage me to try it on, and every time I have to ask them how I do it since I do it so seldom that I don't remember what keys to use.
  • I hardly ever think about how Larisa looks face to face - I mostly see a couple of pink tails and a back. At the most. My focus is in the mobs - or rather at health and mana bars, threat meters and so on.
No, I'm certainly not vain. Or am I? Slowly I've started to realize that there is a stroke of vanity in me, as well as there is in most players. It's about time that I admit it. Because it is a bit vain to wear a lavender purple shirt, a shirt that I've had since I was level 10 or so. When it's viewable it goes so well with Larisa's tails. If I wasn't vain, that slot would have been empty.

Another sign that you care about you're looks is how you handle your head. If you deliberately change the settings in order for the head not to show - well, then you can't say anything but that you're a bit vain. Larisa has for most of her life ran around without a hat, simply because most heads on female gnomes look awful - either they resemble to over dimensioned sombreros, pulled downed to the eyes so you won't see anything of the face - or they look like ugly scarves that make you think about old ladies. It's undignified, just mockery. I've done a few exceptions though. One was Mana-Etched Crown, that I wore with pride. The glory was so beautiful, and it sort of shined in the darkness. And my present Collar of Aldor I have after some hesitation decided to show. After all it's just a collar and it leaves the head free.

The back you can also hide if you want to, but most of the time I've chosen to show it, I think it's mandatory for a mage to wear a mantle. But sometimes I feel a bit reluctant. My present back, Ruby Drape of the Mysticant, is clear read and doesn't fit at all with the rest of my gear that goes towards purple and pink. It looks like an old 1st of may flag. Then I'm not comforted by my red slippers from Oz, Ruby slippers, (mostly covered by the dress, thank's god) and the red edges of the shoulders. I'd prefer to take away the read colour in my outfit altogether. Still uglier was Syrannis' Mystic Sheen, that I had once upon a time. It looked like if you had tied a bath towel around your neck. Thinking about it I think there were more reasons for me not to wear it so much than the stats.

Now to the worst confession of them all. For the time being I don't wear my guild tabard, it's all wrapped in one of my bags. Reason? Being a Swedish guild we have a tabard with the same colour as the Swedish flag, with three golden crowns. It definitely doesn't harmonize with my purple-pink appearance, especially not with the awful red pieces. The result is a multicoloured patch work, with a colour scales going in all sorts of direction, something I don't want Larisa to experience. But if I'll ever get bluish gear one day, I'll be the first one to put on my tabard again, I promise!

I like my weapons pretty much, happy to wear a neat little dagger, not having to run around with something that looks like an oversized saw. But it's a bit careless that they let Fetish of the Primal Gods be dragged around on the ground for all the poor gnomes. Don't we have muscles enough to hold it up?

To summarize I have to admit that when you look closer to it even I have some vanity in me. But I'm far from alone. I can't help smiling sometimes when I hear pretty hardcore stats- and progress-crazy players start talking about their gear purely from the aspect of how they look. Suddenly they sound just like an little doll-playing girl - and they seem to know much clearer than I do what is good looking and what isn't. Without any hesitation they violate all the traditional gender roles.

And now the time has come for me to come out of the closet. Or rather to step into it . The next short commando I'll learn will be that try-out-clothes-function.

Vain as I am.

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