[Request] Cosplay Guide for Kleese [+ Cosplay Build Progress] [Last Update: 1.30.17]

So a couple years ago, for the first PAX South, I built a giant CL4P-TP cosplay suit that went around my wheelchair. (If you’ve seen the “Pandora’s Most Wanted” video from 2015, the giant Claptrap in that video was me.) I had a lot of wonderful experiences because of it, up to and including a chance to meet the voice of Claptrap himself, David Eddings!

A huge part of what helped my mother and I create that lovely masterpiece was the marvelous cosplay guide provided by Gearbox. I was fully prepared to pull screenshots from the games, but the size and clarity of the guide photos were a priceless asset to us.

Well, PAX South is roughly four months away, and I’m aiming big again. I want that hoverchair. I need that hoverchair. I’ve got a series of screenshots in my reference folder already (and I plan to try and get a friend to take a few more in-game), but a guide showcasing the finer details of Kleese’s chair and clothing accessories would be just the thing I need to do this right, so…how about it? What would it cost me to have @JoeKGBX sneak it onto their to-do list? I’ve got access to really good homemade flan!


Now this is a hella cool idea. If you can pull off the Old Man Cranky look, that is. I would really love to see this happen, some of the coolest cosplays I’ve ever seen have been from people in wheelchairs who took advantage of it.

Hey Kris!

I LOVED your Claptrap cosplay. We all did! I remember having several great conversations with you and your friend at PAX South 2015. I think doing a Kleese cosplay would be unbelievable and I’d love to see you give it a shot!

As for a guide, we don’t have a formal guide of course, but if you’ll PM me, I’ll see if I can get some images to help you out. :slight_smile:


Is that a challenge, sir or madam? :stuck_out_tongue:

Nah, in all seriousness, I have my concerns with regards to making sure I look the right age, since I’m still a fairly young lady myself, but I’ve experience with stage makeup and I’ve found a really good tutorial involving liquid latex. As far as overall builds go, Kleese would be my…fourth cosplay to incorporate my entire wheelchair. (I had to stop and count because I’m still fighting off con crud from San Japan.) If you’re interested, I can PM you a link to my cosplay page or my tumblr with pictures of the other builds my mom and I have done!

One of my favorite wheelchair-based cosplayers is Aracknoid3. He hasn’t done any Gearbox-themed cosplay (even though I’m sure he’d KILL IT oh my goodness), but if you like seeing wheelchair-based ones, hoo boy. He does not disappoint.

1 Like

My dude! :smiley: I’ll look over the reference screenshots I’ve got and draft up a short list of which parts I’d like to see more clearly. I know off the top of my head that the cuffs of his sleeves/gloves are going to be at the top of that list, along with a color palette for matching purposes.

PAX South 2015 was such a surreal, wonderful time. Sometimes when I tell people about it, I almost wonder if I dreamed half the stuff that happened–but it’s like, “No. No I didn’t. There are pictures. There’s video. Other people were there!”


Best of luck, @RollingEwok, and I’d love to see the pics when you get this constructed!

Suggestion: mount blue silly-string canisters in the armrests to “tase” people. I’m sure it’d be the only time when loyal Battleborn players would actually find some entertainment in getting locked onto by those annoying things…


I’d love to see that, if you don’t mind.

@CharacterIV 's silly string idea would be an absolutely hilarious addition, but what you could also do is: You know that holo-keyboard thingy that Kleese has pop up in front of him? You could try taking a flat pane of plastic and painting on the general shape of the keys, and then sticking a blue LED below it to illuminate it? It would look pretty freaking sweet, and be somewhere handy to put all your free swag =D

1 Like

Sorry for the belated responses, @CharacterIV and @nbrownlie237! These are some quite interesting ideas. I haven’t messed around with silly string in ages, but I wonder if I can find cans small and light enough to wear on the wrist…

One of the small obstacles about including the keyboard (which would be really cool) is how/where to mount it. That’s really the main obstacle overall, really. If you don’t anchor things on the chair properly, there’s a risk that the chair won’t move as it should, or that it’ll be too heavy, or that you won’t be able to fit through doorways (as we discovered with the Claptrap build).

I should take a picture of the wheelchair I have so you guys can see the base I’m working with. Maybe some extra eyes might offer solutions Mom and I haven’t thought of!


Feel free to stick some pics up on here - would be only too happy to help.

Is anyone gonna mind if I just use this thread as a progress report thread? I didn’t want to start a whole new one… I can retitle the first post if necessary. Let me know.


Since you guys last heard from me, we’ve made a little bit of progress, though nothing has been built yet. Mom and I had our first “project meeting” where we looked over the screenshots I took of Kleese and the picture of him from his bio page on the website. We have a list of items we need, because my mother swears by lists, and this weekend making a field trip to Harbor Freight and Home Depot for some EVA foam and PVC pipes. It won’t surprise me if she breaks out her rolls of stiffer wire as well for frame-building.

On that note, It can’t go without saying that all of my massive cosplay work is a group effort. My mom is the main constructor of the larger pieces and smaller things–accessories, clothing, makeup–fall to me, but I have a group of friends without whom I probably would not look as good or have as much time to pull these things off.

For example, last week, my friend Andy came over and helped me make a life cast of my face for prosthetic reasons.

(He also bought me the first peppermint mocha of the season, because it was buy 1 get 1 free at Starbucks.)

These pictures are from his Instagram, and we’ll be using the hashtag #CosplayAtTheCentralHub in case anyone wants to follow between updates.

Once it’s properly sanded down smooth and given a protective coating or three of glue, this life cast is going to be indispensable for this cosplay. Kleese has very specific and prominent facial features, plus…he’s kind of old. And a dude. I am neither of those things.

Oh! Oh! I also noticed something very awesome about Kleese while playing as him: HE DIRECTS THE CHAIR WITH SPECIFIC HAND GESTURES. (I’m sorry for the all-caps. I’m still excited about this.) The next time I play him, I’ll record it, but it’s true! I was totally surprised when I first noticed it, but the animators made sure that each of the eight directions that Kleese can move in has a different hand gesture and I’m…I’m really very happy that detail exists. It really makes his partnership with the chair seem much more genuine and real and not just an amusing “ha ha he’s old” gimmick that it might have been in something else.

Okay. Now I need to go listen to his voice lines on repeat in a bid to match the way he sounds.

Hasta la proxima! <3


How do you do, friends and neighbors!

Not much to really talk about. Progress has been slow, but there’s always a point in the PAX Prep where there’s a lull and then work really gets going. (Which is usually about the time Mom has off or nearly-off/half-days from her job, so there’s still time.) I’m not panicking much yet. XD But anyway, I have pictures to share!

Noses are really hard to nail down, guys. Like, I figured it would give me a little bit of trouble and this is my first time making prosthetics like this, but…egh… I had references and everything, but I spent a lot of time trying to get it to look just so. It’s really hard. /o\

This is what I ended up with at the end of our crafting session (because by then I’d tried so many different attempts at shaping and I just couldn’t work on it anymore), but I’m still having misgivings. Is it too big? Is it the wrong shape altogether? How much of it can I fix in painting/makeup once I get the latex on? AND HIS NOSTRILS OH MY STARS. Why are nostrils such a challenge. /o\ The nose is a very important part of the face, and I don’t want to get it wrong…

In any case, this is where I am. I have some wefts of white hair that I’m going to use for the facial hair. We’ll see how it goes. Pray for me. Or, if you’re handy with prosthetics, I will happily take some tips and pointers!


Hey! I’ve read this earlier and wanted to reply but forget…

The idea of cosplaying Kleese is freaking amazing! I like the progress so far. ^^ I think the nose looks fine and has the right size, but I think that would be easier to see if you actually see it in real life than on a picture.

Anyways, good luck with this cosplay and keep us updateeeed! :smiley:

1 Like

Thank you! I’m in the process of gathering a few pictures for a proper progress post. Should have it written and posted tomorrow. I will say, though, that I’ve set aside the plan to go with a prosthetic nose (or at least setting aside the plan to make the prosthetic myself). I wasn’t really comfortable with how it turned out. It looks like a nose, but it’s definitely not convention ready. I need more practice with latex and molds.

I still have a few options on how to get the look I’m after, though, and I think getting his eyebrows might still be possible. But more on that soon enough!


Awesome! I’d love to see more of it! I love cosplays, and me and my sister are actually to cosplay as Miko and Phoebe one day! I we ever manage to do that I’ll post pictures buuuut this is about war Kleese cosplay! ;p

And it does’t really matter if you make the Kleese face or not, as long as you like how it turns out! I’m sure the cosplay is gonna be great anyways.

Can’t wait to see you start working on the Battlechair though. :open_mouth: #Hype

It was pointed out to me recently that if you type “Kleese Cosplay” into Google, this thread is the first result, and pictures from this thread are among the first offered in the Image Search. I am greatly amused by this.

Right! I promised you guys an update and then I was late with that update. I’m sorry. But I have an update nonetheless! And pictures!

First up, 86ing the prosthetics. The mold of my face went fine. (It was a little challenging because I had to go without oxygen and sit still, but it wasn’t bad.) Sculpting the nose and forehead wrinkles was difficult, but I thought I’d achieved success anyway. Then I started to paint on the layers of latex. First of all, one of the intended “wrinkles” broke off before I could start painting on the latex, because I hadn’t smoothed the clay down enough. But I was like, “Okay, no big deal. I can do this.”

And it went fine! At first. But I was noticing that the latex wasn’t exactly going on smoothly as it probably should have been. (Mistake No. 1: I didn’t sand down the clay after it dried, like I had with the initial lifecast.) But I was like, “No big deal. He’s old. I can work with this in makeup!”

I have a natural talent for picking difficult/challenging projects and throwing myself at them, and I am also naturally stubborn. Always have been. I have learned, albeit slowly and over many situations, to know when to call it and let go–and that was several dry layers and a day or so later:

It just. It’s not good, guys. It’s not to my standards. So I’m going to blow the dust off what I learned about contouring in stage makeup and maybe I’ll scale it down and focus on making Kleese’s eyebrows and facial hair via a combination of latex, cotton balls, some extra wefts of white hair that I bought from Arda, and that amazing Got2B hair glue I have in the house. So even though the initial plan didn’t work, this isn’t a setback.

Meanwhile, there’s progress on the shirt! While Kleese’s outfit is likely multiple pieces, I’m making life easier on myself and making his top just two pieces. I love technology because it means my friends can be at the fabric store and send me multiple potential fabrics (there are so many lovely shades of purple!), which I can then immediately reimburse them for buying it on my behalf. This is the fabric that will make up a majority of Kleese’s vest:


^ This is how it photographs without flash. And this one is with:


It’s pretty close to perfect, no?:

We also picked a really lovely-feeling fabric for the sleeves. It’s got the right sort of airy movement that you’d expect from how they look, but it also just feels really smooth and comfortable against the skin. The plan is to use pleather for the little bolero/shoulder portion, and bias tape will take care of the black outlining. We’ve done a prototype:

It’s missing the collar and sleeves, but it fits where it should, so that’s good, right?

Also! This project is doubling as a lesson in working with patterns and sewing for me; I have a basic knowledge and my own machine, but a lot of what I wear in cosplay is clothing modified from stuff I get from thrift stores or already own and I would really love to construct more of my own things from scratch. My friends who bought the fabric for me are a pair of sisters with an impressive knowledge on the subject and a willingness to share what they know! (They cosplayed as Maya and Nina along with my Claptrap during PAX South 2015, and I’ve known them almost a decade now.) Tori, the younger of the two sisters, worked with me to get the prototype sewn; she did all the cutting while explaining things to me but left the sewing in my hands.

And I mean that literally. I don’t have the proper ankle rotation to work the pedal, so I hold the fabric with my left hand and push the pedal with my right! It makes curves a little tricky, but I think I did alright.


That would complicate things

I love it as well

This is really cool, good job! :heart:

1 Like

FINALLY!!! ;p Jkjk, I was waiting for this update tho- OMG THE PURPLE FABRIC IS PERFECTTTT. This is awesome. I’m liking this cosplay already. I don’t have much else to say at the moment, but I’ll (un)patiently wait for the next update.

Edit: It’s impatiently, isn’t it? Ah, my great English skills are showing again!


I’ve been working on something to help you guys make more awesome Battleborn Cosplays but it’s sadly not finished yet… However I was quite impressed catching up on your build progress (I’m also a fan of Kleese) that I wanted to offer my help, even if I’m a bit late to the party!

My rendering is still fairly incomplete (I’m missing all the sweet VFX and animations and I still have crappy lighting atm), but here’s my Unofficial Kleese Cosplay Reference Guide. :heart:

Good luck with your project!


Damn, we always have this community badass here to help out! Even though I am not the one making the cosplay, I think this will be very helpfull for she who is actually creating it. (I’m just here to stalk)
You’re amazing Lowlines.

1 Like

YO HOLY [REDACTED]! That’s amazing! I. Wow. No, seriously, I just showed my cosplay group because dude, seriously. YES. GOOD. This is going to make our lives so much easier, especially when my mom and I start building the hoverchair shell itself.

Speaking of construction; I could’ve sworn I had more pictures of sewing the jacket but I think I accidentally deleted a couple. (Ah well. They were just “aesthetic filler” ones showing the patterns being laid out and such.) Sewing it has been fairly smooth for the most part. There was a point at which I sewed two pieces together because I thought they looked similar…but they were the wrong pieces to join together. Nothing a good seam ripper and careful hands can’t fix!

That is my “resting/sit straight enough to get a good picture” face.

This is where we’re at with the top for now! (Not Pictured: The other sleeve, tucked inside.) The sleeves are too long and a touch too billowy, but the sisters have assured me that that’s an easy fix. We’ve also got the purple portion of Kleese’s gloves sewn and I’ll take a photo of that later. I’ve ordered some black costume gloves and the purple bits will slide right over them so that, once I have the gauntlets on, it’ll at least look like they’re one piece instead of two.

We haven’t added the collar yet because that requires seeing how it sits on me when I’m wearing my binder, and I was having a combination low-energy/sore breasts day because of everyone’s favorite natural monthly process! (But hey, better now than during PAX South. I’ve already got enough to worry about then, what with presenting a panel and all.) When they come over tomorrow, I imagine a fit test will be first on the agenda.