... is a 4.5-inch scale figurine of Phaelia decked out in full Season 2 armor
And thanks to FigurePrints, I will be able to purchase one for the price of $100 + $15 shipping. FigurePrints is a new company that's very cleverly applied a manufacturing technology formerly used to quickly prototype machine parts to the MMO vanity industry. They offer the creation of a customized resin figure of your character wearing whatever gear you have in your possession (they tie into the Armory to pull down your gear) in a pose of your choosing. There's a brief discussion of the technology available on YouTube.
The idea of this service is excellent. I have no doubt they will do very well, especially if they begin taking orders prior to Christmas (although there's little chance of these orders being processed prior to December 25th). There are a few limitations to it, however:
- Price: $115 is pretty prohibitive for most, even if the end result is amazing. I know I'd have to pool birthday and Christmas to get one for myself, and that would mean no computer upgrades or shoes!
- Gear Selection: Because the company keys off of your Armory profile, you have to have the items you want displayed actually in your character inventory (and worn at the time they perform your character scrape). Since this is a vanity item, I see no reason that they shouldn't allow you to specify whatever gear you'd like. If you happen to be nostalgic about the Stormrage set that you've long since vendored for the sake of bank space, you should still be able to get a figure crafted wearing those items. What if you never managed to complete your Tier X set but like its aesthetics? I worry that not allowing this feature may turn off many potential customers.
- Time: Once you've completed your order, you are guaranteed receipt within 90 days. A character can change appearance drasticially in 90 days, making the option to select whatever gear you want even more important.
- Character Appearance: Face, hair color, hairstyle, piercings, etc. are character customizations that cannot be datamined from the armory XML output but are absolutely essential to allowing you to individualize your character, and consequentially your figurine. I haven't been able to determine whether these customizations are included in your order. As a licensed Blizzard product, however, I suppose its possible that Blizzard is willing to provide them this data, even if you aren't asked to provide it when ordering.
- Size: Because the figures are created to scale, the gnomes turn out really tiny, even though you pay the same price. I'm glad that I play one of the largest race so that it would be easier to see the detail of my character.
Overall, I think this service is an amazingly cool application of a technology that was previously put to more mundane uses. I would LOVE to be able to get one of these created of Phaelia, but I'd have an incredibly hard time deciding which pair of shoes to wear ... and talking Mr. Phae into it.
|Female Human Druid (Resto)||Male Night Elf Hunter|
P.S. In case you were wondering, this was not a paid advertisement. I just thought that some of you might find this service as interesting and appealing as I do!
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