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Guest Post: 5 ways to become a master of disguise

This article has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider.

We've all experienced it: You're walking into Orgrimmar or Ironforge, intent on visiting the auction house to spend that gold jingling in your pocket, when suddenly you stop dead, dumbstruck. Your jaw goes slightly slack as you /awe in wonder. A strange creature unlike anything you've encountered before is dancing in the town square and emoting kisses to everyone nearby. A crowd has gathered. People are cheering. "That's neat ... and maybe a little weird," you silently muse as you crack a smile and continue on your way.

I'm talking about player costumes. When the skin of your orc, troll, gnome or draenei becomes too heavy a burden, plenty of opportunities exist for a brief stay in the body of another creature (unless you're a druid, in which case you change forms all the time). These devices, elixirs and enchantments come in many shapes and stack sizes, but one key element runs through them all: They're a blast for the light-hearted player inside each of us.

Ever wondered where they're from and how to get them? Wonder no more! Without further ado, I present five of the most delightfully awesome, portable, use-anywhere player costumes of all time. With Hallow's End just around the corner, you're sure to find something here that will suit you as you strut through your city of choice, sipping from a bottle of Autumnal Acorn Ale.

Honorable Mention Murloc Costume / Dartol's Rod of Transformation I set these two items aside due to their limited availability. The murloc suit is only for those who attended BlizzCon in 2007, and Alliance players have exclusive access to the quest Raene's Cleansing, which rewards the other item. Nonetheless, the murloc outfit is hilarious; it comes with its own emotes and is generally very silly. Dartol's Rod allows players to become a furbolg for 3 minutes. Many players hold the final step of the quest in their logs forever just to keep that ability, but this is no longer necessary, since the rod remains when the chain is done.

5. Dire Brew / Iron Boot Flask Although these are two separate items, I felt they could be mentioned in the same breath, since they transform their users into one of the many types of dwarves from around Azeroth. The Dire Brew can be found in Blackrock Depths; speak to the Dark Iron Brewer in the Grim Guzzler. When consumed, it transforms you into a Dark Iron dwarf. The Iron Boot Flask similarly turns you into an Iron dwarf and can be purchased in the Storm Peaks for 10 Relics of Ulduar. While in Iron form, you'll randomly shock nearby enemies. Bzzt!

4. Gnomeregan Pride / Darkspear Pride These two new additions to the costume arsenal are most welcome. Now you can -- for a whopping 30 minutes! -- become an armed-to-the-teeth gnome or troll champion. The requirements for these items are also minimal; both can be obtained (by a determined player) at level 1. Since they allow mounting and change your voice to match your new race, they're great items for everyday (everydungeon?) use. Grab these now before they're gone!

3. Orb of the Sin'dorei It's no secret that everybody wants to be a blood elf*. With the Orb of the Sin'dorei, the chance to become a gaunt, long-eared, green-eyed addict is now within the grasp of every player level 70 and up. Simply farm the bosses of Magisters' Terrace, and soon you too can look like a member of your favorite Horde race ... for 5 minutes, anyway. Any longer, and you might start flipping your hair and worrying excessively about the color scheme of your armor set. This item is very cool and a must-have for the costume aficionado. The blood elf disguise allows for emotes, mounting and combat, so you never need to feel crippled ... even when you're crippled by an insatiable thirst for magic.

2. Savory Deviate Delight Most players have encountered this tasty treat in their wanderings. It was borne from a popular meme at the time of WoW's inception: pirates vs. ninjas. While the battle for superiority undoubtedly continues to this day, it isn't as rampant as it once was, thus making these costumes a bit ... dated. Anyway, this item allows players to become a pirate or ninja for one hour. Unlike many other outfits, the Delight allows mounting and emotes of all kinds and is thus one of the most versatile transformations available. Its value on the auction house -- for stacks of these once fetched a pretty penny -- has waned over the years, but connoisseurs who wish to cook these up for themselves need only wander The Barrens, slaughtering everything in their paths. (The recipe is a zone drop from any mob.) Aspiring Iron Chefs: Get this while you can! Who knows what will happen to it when The Barrens is torn asunder?

1. Orb of Deception There is perhaps no costume item more iconic and well known than the Orb of Deception. This trinket has a chance to drop from most level 50+ monsters in high-end vanilla zones, dungeons and raids (such as Winterspring, Scholomance and Zul'Gurub). It transforms you temporarily into a member of your "opposing" race, thus giving you the appearance of the rival faction for 5 minutes. While I, like many others, hoped beyond hope that I could then walk unnoticed amongst my foes (how fun would that be?), alas, this is not the case. Your name will still be red, and enemy guards are not fooled. Nonetheless, due to its consistent high value and otherwise unattainable effect, this item remains at the top of the costume heap. If you want something unique to keep in your pocket for a slow raid night or some /dance in town, snag one of these now, lest Cataclysm sink the remaining orbs to the bottom of the Maelstrom!

Happy costuming!

* Note: Not true.

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