- The Secret of the Inner Sanctum -
I "fake-joined" the Video Game Swap 2016 at Craftster, which simply means that, while you still have to follow the rules for said event, instead of actually exchanging the item(s) that you made with another member, you're creating them for yourself. Said swap has been finished for a while now (the send-out deadline was October 8th), but, while I wanted to at the time, I never signed up when the thing was active because I was already ridiculously behind on my "I Love Disney" fake swap, and I couldn't very well take on even more fakery when I hadn't yet honored my existing commitment. As Ms. Manners will tell you, there's a certain degree of etiquette that must be observed, even when you're in the midst of shamelessly flaking, or else civilized society as we know it will collapse. Anyway, when it comes to fake swaps, you're allowed to join them after-the-fact, which is what I did in this case, and, as 2016 was almost over when I decided to bite the bullet, I gave myself a very short deadline (December 29th) to get it done.
Naga are powerful serpent entities found in Hindu and Buddhist mythology. They can typically assume the shape of either a snake, human, or the hybrid form exhibited here. In Sanskrit, "Naga" is one of several terms used for snakes in general, and cobras in particular. Although, technically, the moniker only refers to the male variety of the supernatural creatures; "Nagi" or "Nagini" is the proper title for females of the species. Even so, for the sake of consistency with what's been used in the game, I'll stick with Naga for my text and pray that she isn't insulted enough to make me pay for the slight in blood. I'm telling you, the ring bruises that result from the constricting coils of a Naga take a really long time to fade and I have to remember to wear long-sleeved shirts to conceal them because it's too exhausting attempting to explain where they come from, especially to busybodies that don't believe that snake women even exist in the first place. Those knowledgeable souls just shake their heads and advise me that, if I didn't fall asleep with rubberbands wrapped around my limbs, I wouldn't end up with unsightly marks like those. What are the twin puncture wounds from her fangs then, stapler mishaps?
Anyway, this is what the Naga, accompanied by an 8-Headed Hydra and Mantis Warrior, looks like during a battle in the NES version of Might & Magic Book One: The Secret of the Inner Sanctum. There's only room on the screen to display three monster sprites simultaneously (and only the current active target is in full color), which is why you can't also see the Dinobeetle, Sphinx, and Vampire creatures that are listed as part of the Naga's deadly entourage. It's not safe to ambush and murder a party of adventurers all by yourself you know--smart monsters always use the buddy system.
And here's a closer look at the Naga game sprite all by herself. Why's she even carrying that skull around? Either Naga is trying to intimidate us or she really likes reciting that Yorick bit from Hamlet.
Below are a series of photos depicting several stages of the papier-mâché modeling process I used to create this Naga figurine:
The finished product. As usual, there are some minor imperfections here-and-there (small, unwanted bumps and wrinkles on the figure's paper surfaces), the skull's features should have been more defined, and the placement/arrangement of the fingers holding said bone could be better, but, overall, I'm fairly happy with how she turned out. The NES Might & Magic Naga is one of my favorite depictions of that particular mythical creature, so, I'm pleased to have her in 3-dimensional form.
Back in 2005, it was apparently very important to me that I make Naga breasts as large as possible!
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