Gearbox Community Badass: Bill Doran of Punished Props

Gearbox Community Badass is a new feature we’re trying out as a way to recognize members of the Gearbox Community for their creative efforts – be they cosplays, artwork, community events, guides, or any other means of letting their Gearbox flag fly! Each week, we’ll spotlight one of our awesome community members and the cool things they’re doing. Anyone is eligible to be a featured community badass, so being a member of the forums isn’t required (although it helps since this is where our badasses will be featured!) Additionally, every featured Badass will receive a “Legendary” forum badge, so it’ll be hard to enjoy your flair without a forum account, right?! Please note that while each week’s Community Badass will be selected by forum staff, nominations are welcome and will be taken into account. If you’d like to nominate someone to be a Gearbox Community Badass, just PM @joe_king with your nomination!

Welcome back to Gearbox Community Badass! This week, we’re showcasing another of our community’s amazing prop builders: Bill Doran of Punished Props! I first became aware of Bill back in January when I met an awesome Gaige cosplayer who had an incredible Causal Swordsplosion prop. In talking with her a bit about it, Bill’s name came up and so when I got back to the Gearbox offices after PAX, I decided to check out Bill’s website, It didn’t take me long to find Bill’s Hyperion Plasmacaster build, which is one of the craziest things I’ve ever seen. I showed it to @Jeffybug, Mikey Neumann, and some of the rest of the team and everyone’s jaws hit the floor. Needless to say, Bill’s work made a huge impression on all of us and he continues to produce insanely good work from not only the Borderlands universe, also games like Destiny, Mass Effect, and Tomb Raider, among others. I managed to catch Bill as he was returning from San Diego Comic Con and had a little time to give me a few answers to some pressing questions:

[Note: you can find more info and progress shots of Bill’s Hyperion Plasmacaster HERE]

How long have you been creating props and cosplays and how did you get started?
I’ve been creating props and costumes since 2009 when my friends dragged me to PAX Prime dressed
as the characters from Team Fortress 2.

Any tips for someone who might want to get into making props (or cosplays for that matter)?
If you’re looking to start out as a cosplayer or prop maker, pick a character or weapon that you really like for your first project. You’ll end up getting frustrated during the build process and your obsession with that property is the only thing that will get you to the finish line.

What’s your next big project?
Up next I’ll be building another, new Destiny costume to go along with my wife at PAX and Dragon Con this summer.

Talk about your Borderlands history a little bit. How long have you been playing now?
I’ve been playing Borderlands since the first game. I’m a huge fan of the franchise and the art style. I especially like the huge, wild guns. I’ve built some of them in the past and I’m looking forward to building more in the future. I even built a Claptrap puppet!

Have a favorite playable character?
Now that Claptrap is playable, he’s gotta be my favorite playable character. I think he is downright hilarious. While not playable, Tiny Tina has a special place in my heart too. I especially liked her in Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep!


What would you say is your favorite thing about Borderlands?
My favorite thing about Borderlands has got to be the amazing dialogue and voice acting by the characters.

Where can people keep up with you and what you’re working on?
If you’d like to keep up with all of my crazy prop and costume making goodness, you can see it all on my website!

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That one slipped through my radar. Congrats. This is some fine work :slight_smile: