World of Warcraft’s patch 4.3 brought about a popular new feature – transmogrification – that allows players to change the appearance of their equipped armor to other armor they may have. The feature has proven to be a popular way to customize characters, as previously a lot of people looked the same if they were sporting the most recent and powerful items. There are dozens of websites that you can explore to assemble the best looking set. It has incentivized players to explore and farm old content to obtain nostalgic and unique looks, and it has created an extremely profitable market for players dedicated to collecting and reselling popular items.
With transmogrification as popular as it is, introducing cool-looking armor might be as popular a reward as powerful gear.
Mists of Pandaria is testing this right out of the gate. The new challenge mode dungeons seem very difficult, but they offer a great reward if completed on the highest difficult: a unique armor set used for transmogrification. Most of the difficult raiding and PvP achievements have been rare and unique mounts and titles, but this new type of reward could be a new standard. The mounts have made the “glory” achievements very sought after, but they haven’t worked too well for getting people into rated battlegrounds. What’s the point in getting a new mount every couple of months if you are just going to replace it with a shinier one in the near future? Special armor rewards offer another factor to work towards, especially since the raid finder has made obtaining gear that looks similar to the normal and heroic raid’s models very easy.