One Big Way Skyrim is Not Like Second Life
I just started playing Skyrim, which has many similarities to Second Life, but I now know one profound way the two worlds are not alike at all.
This is what the latest version of Skyrim looks like on my Alienware M11x gaming notebook, four minutes after launching the game on Steam:
And this is what the latest version of Second Life looks like on my Alienware M11x gaming notebook, four minutes after logging in:
Note no avatar yet displayed. Neither most of the environment. In a 3D client that's been on the market for over 8 years. Running on a high-end gaming laptop. Which plays a brand new high-end 3D game just about perfectly.
Yes, I know all the technical reasons why Second Life takes so long to fully display. I also know that almost all the 12,000 or so people who create an SL account every day will not know these reasons, nor will they really care. All they'll know is what it looks like after so much time (and by the Internet's dog year standards, four minutes is well nigh half an hour) and leave.
Yes, I know many places in Second Life look as good as Skyrim, some even better, if you give them the 10 or 15 or 20 minutes to fully load in. I also know that most people will never see these places in their full glory, for that very reason.
Yes, I know Second Life would perform far better, were I to run it on a desktop PC with a dedicated broadband line. I also know that saying this is tantamount to condemning SL to the dustbin of another era, as desktop computing continues moving utterly and irrevocably into total obsolescence.
Yes, I know many SLers will now accuse me of bashing Second Life for writing this post, just as they have before, which is a sad thing to know indeed. Because I also know that this very attitude among SL's most avid users -- a dogged willingness to ignore or accept vast, fundamental problems with the client, coupled with anger at those who point them out -- is a major threat to Second Life's survival. Until Second Life runs as well as something like Skyrim -- and until Linden Lab and the userbase demands that it does, not just on their moribund desktop PCs, but on all the major computing platforms where it can and should be -- that survival hangs in the balance.