Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Tier 10 and their Origins

Most people have probably noticed that Icecrown's Tier 10 reflects upon key iconic figures that make up the Lich King's army in Northrend, so here's a post where you can see for yourself the sets currently available on MMOChampion and from the PTR, and the figures that influence the designs:

Warrior T10. Hard to find the Vry'kul resemblance at first but after looking for the key figure, King Ymiron, we can see the boar shoulders are a deliberate reference to the King's belt. Very cool design, reflective of the wonderful T3/T6 warrior design as well, which was one of the best designed sets out there.

Rogue T10. Obvious reference to the Northrend Geist. Who doesn't love The Leaper? Aside from the obvious one eye helm, a real world reference to the Cyborg Ninja of Metal Gear Solid fame, the noose from the Geist features prominently in the rogue set. The rough stitches provide the details to the set pieces whilst resembling like the same rough stitches that we see on fleshbeast creations throughout Northrend.

Mage T10. The San'layn have been a mysterious prescence throughout Northrend. With a whole wing dedicated to the mysterious blood drinkers in Icecrown Citadel, they deserve some kind of recognition for their services to the Lich King. The mummified bandages go away from the San'layn model in favour of an ornate, jeweled, set design.

Hunter T10. Cryptlordstalker! Nerubians have played a huge part in how the Scourge rose to power, and the traitor king Anub'arak is the basis for the hunter tier. The spiked helm is the obvious trait, as does the big smooth and round shoulders that resemble the crypt lord. However, we lose the minor Egyptian details from the transition of cryptlord to hunter. Instead, we get belts and other leathery touches to make it a hunter set that looks like a cryptlord, rather than the other way around.

Druid T10. Not a perfect reference, but pretty much resembles the undead beasts such as Gluth and other shadowy fiends. It has the stag-like horns that clearly make it a druid set, and despite the faceless look I like it.

Death Knight T10. Pretty obvious! Skull placements, unsymmetric shoulders, triple spiked helm are the main features that make transition from Arthas to the death knight set.

Priest T10. I'm probably a teeny bit bitter that the obvious choice of inspiration for a priest set, the Val'kyr, have been snubbed. Instead we get a Dreadmist sort of looking set, influenced by Necromancers such as Heigan the Unclean. There have been recolors shown on official WoW forums that make it look a lot nicer, but to me, the overall look remains pretty uninspired. Hell, even a skull-o-meter count results is a big fat zero. The only thing that makes it look remotely like an Icecrown set is pair of horns at the bottom of the dress. Sorry Horde, looks like T10 got the same designers that designed the "Alliance" T9 cloth, which didn't have any actual Alliance insignias at all.

Val'kyrs remain the missed obvious choice still, after all, Arthas never seems to walk around anywhere without his two Val'kyrs in early Northrend quests. The angelic winged look combined with the power over life of death that they have would've made a great inspiration for the priest tier 10. Some priests have already taken steps to redesign the set, such as Saerah. It looks fantastic:

I have left out Warlocks and Paladins because I'm not too sure on their in-game references, and Shamans haven't been released yet. Does anyone have ideas?


  1. Ooh Valkyr would have been cool! Warlocks are clearly Munchkins. We were thinking cultists, but the face in the helm gives a skeletal look. Paladin, I think the bf said it could be based on Bolvar?

    //Jaedia - lazy sniper

  2. According to all the forums I've read, Warlocks are traditional Cult of the Damned acolytes, Priests are Nerubian Priests and Paladins are sort of like a combination of the Ulduar T8 combined with the new lava man Ulduar. So your boyfriend is on the right track, perhaps!

  3. I can personally see some similarities between the new priest set and the new lich model: