Shy of Shy at WoW posted earlier to flag up the similarities between tiers fourteen and fifteen for monks, pointing out the prevalence of saucer hats and the lack of anything really interesting about them.
For the most part, I agree with her. I felt tier fourteen in particular was an unsuccessful attempt to prove that splashing neon onto neutral tones can make for something beautiful. Both fourteen and fifteen lack any powerful centrepiece to them.
This changes somewhat if you view tier fifteen’s chestpiece on the male model, mind you. Due to a lack of boobs to cover, it becomes a lot more interesting.
Behold, male and female:
On the male model, the armour makes artful use of bare skin to create an effect that could be played as a heavy-duty tattoo or a clever bit of
tailoring leatherworking. It's unique, it's effective, it's the centre part of the set as a whole, and it's lost completely if you play a woman.
No wonder the set looks so bloody bland to me when I'm looking at it as worn by my default form. The whole point of it is obscured by what looks like a sheet of moulded cardboard wedged up underneath. Not only is the clever cutaway diminished, but the bindings around the midsection lose their martial artist feel. As one of those poor saps stuck working in retail, in fact, I am reminded distinctly of my primary foe.
Newbie cosplayers might not mind a set that legitimises their heavy use of cardboard and packing tape, but as someone who notes her class only has two tier sets at this point, I would rather at least one of them didn't suck as worn by my actual character, as opposed to sir beefcake the human male. Yes, some sets suit certain races over others, but to have a tier set that loses all its oomph when worn by one gender across all races? This is foolishness, Blizzard.
It's also a bit strange to me that I'm essentially scowling over the female model showing less flesh. This isn't the norm. To summarise:
Despite a bit of method reversal, however, it's the same overall effect, and the same real reason I get pissed off: the female version of the tier armour loses visual impact because the set was presumably designed for the male first and foremost. When it became clear the design had a few issues on the female form (bearing nipples or, you know, pasting on beards) a solution was botched up with scissors/cardboard/sticky tape and huzzah! The lady model was born.
The difference is that, this time, I can bring out my warlock's cleavage and say, hey, if she can wander around Azeroth looking like this, can't you maybe widen a swirl to cover the minimum and give me a tier set with a focus?