Monday, November 24, 2014

Here's How to Spare Yourself from Winter Texture Blowout in Second Life

Janine "Iris Ophelia" Hawkins' ongoing review of gaming and virtual world style

It's that time of year when many Second Life sims redecorate for a more snowy, seasonal look. Everything gets a lot whiter, from terrain textures to rooftops and trees, and as everything starts to get more festive it also starts to get a lot more... Blown-out. Although snow-blindness isn't a concern in the virtual world, these blown-out snowy surfaces can give us a bit of detail-blindness under default lighting. The finer aspects of textures that keep them from looking like indistinguishably muddled white things tend to get washed away in the sheer, overwhelming brightness of it all.

Thankfully, Kriss Lehmann of tree and terrain-grooming brand Botanical has shared a pretty helpful little graphic recently that should help you understand how to get the most out of all these wintery textures. Virtual world photographers in particular will want to pay attention to this one...

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Posted at 01:20 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)

Get Crafty With the Product Maker Script from Shuggles (NWN Partner News)


Content creation in Second Life is done in a way that doesn't really lend itself to immersion or roleplay. Baking a cake in Blender or pulling it fully-formed out of your inventory doesn't really have the same impact that combining ingredients to produce it would. NWN sponsoring partner Shuggles' Product Maker script is a pretty simple way to do something that might otherwise seem a little impossible unless you have a head for scripting things yourself. With it, you can recreate a crafting system of sorts in SL; gather your ingredients, combine them, and voila. Maybe you've just forged a piece of armor, brewed a potion -- whatever you've set the script up for.

I can think of dozens of items I've picked up over the years meant to help imitate the actions of making something, but where that action never bears fruit. We all probably have something like that, maybe an animated kitchen set or even an anvil or a sewing machine. While the Product Maker script obviously can't create items from ingredients alone, it's still one step closer to imitating reality. Better to get that finished cake from the oven than from your inventory, right? The Product Maker is also full-permissions, meaning that if you're the one making that kitchen set you can easily make it that much more useful to your customers.

You can check out the Product Maker for yourself on the Second Life Marketplace, or visit Shuggles in-world (teleport here) to check it out for yourself.

Posted at 12:35 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Top Seven New World Notes Posts from Last Week!

Second Life 2 Sex

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Friday, November 21, 2014

SL Go Places: "CHAOS, KOSMOS", Massive New Installation in the Linden Endowment for the Arts Sim

SL Go SL art Giovanna Cerise Chaos 2

That's me floating at the base of CHAOS, KOSMOS, a vast and sprawling new art installation now being featured in the LEA sim -- that is, the Linden Endowment of the Arts island, a partnership between Linden Lab and Second Life artists. Created by Giovanna Cerise, CHAOS, KOSMOS is an incredibly SL Go OnLivechallenging 3D sculpture to see in its full glory, so I was curious how it would look running SL Go on my old Dell laptop.

I took this pic and the one below with the draw distance up to 500 meters, dynamic shadows enabled, and when you're able to see that far, and you're floating alongside it up high, Cerise's installation looks like this:

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Posted at 07:14 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Buy a Second Life Dress to Help Educate Sierra Leone Girls

Second Life Charity Event

Strawberry Singh has news of an excellent non-profit campaign in Second Life, led by Juno Mantel, a well-known SL fashion designer:

Juno Mantel of Junbug has started a campaign to help educate girls in Sierra Leone [one of the world's most impoverished countries]. She has created this adorable vintage school dress, available in 5 colors, and 100% of the sales will be donated to her Do it in a Dress campaign... The Do it in a Dress campaign is part of the One Girl Organization in Australia. People from all over the world (men, women and children) have been taking part by wearing a dress and raising funds.

So now SLers can dress up to help raise funds too. Click here to buy the dresses in SL and go here to watch the funds come in on the NGO's official website.

Also via Strawberry, here's a video from One Girl explaining the program more:

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Posted at 04:47 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Linden Lab Pulls Minecraft-Esque Patterns from Steam

Patterns Linden Lab review

Dorito boy, we hardly knew ye. Linden Lab has pulled Pattern, its inventive, Minecraft-eseque sandbox game, from Steam:

While “extremely grateful” to the players who bought an Early Access copy of Patterns, features relying on server connections, such as world-sharing are going to be turned off and the there will be no future updates. The offline content released so far will still be playable, however. “Patterns had early promise,” the team say. “And while Linden Lab focuses our efforts on our other offerings, we are still evaluating the future of the Patterns technology.” Patterns players are angry at the sudden announcement. There’d been no updates to the game since May but there had been nothing written to suggest the team would take the money and run.

That's disappointing news, because Patterns showed a lot of potential. Even Minecraft creator Markus Persson was digging it, while a well-known developer admired the hell of it on New World Notes. But apparently it wasn't gaining enough traction/sales to justify more effort on it, besides the company's core focus:

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Posted at 01:52 PM | Permalink | Comments (12)

DX Exchange Hiring In-World Staff (NWN Partner News)

DX Linden Dollar merchant

DX Exchange (a proud NWN partner) is now hiring paid in-world staff to help expand its Linden Dollar to real currency exchange service throughout Second Life -- especially users who are fluent in both English and Spanish or Chinese. If you're qualified and interested, e-mail support at dxexchange dot com or IM the company's in-world representative (pictured here) MarcelEdward DX.

More details after the break. 

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Posted at 01:45 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Watch Iris Play: Goat Simulator's Latest Update, a Hilarious Take on Your Least Favorite MMO Tropes

Janine "Iris Ophelia" Hawkins' ongoing review of gaming and virtual world style

Remember Goat Simulator? I don't think there's any other game that I enjoyed as much but played so little of. When it first came out it was a genuinely entertaining diversion, but even when they released a new map I didn't feel much of a need to return; it all just wore thin too quickly. That's likely why their latest piece of DLC (released yesterday) has taken me by surprise. For the first time ever, I'm playing Goat Simulator and seriously planning to play more

The Goat MMO Simulator DLC is absolutely free, and brings multiple new maps and atcivities into the game. It's simultaneously a snarky response to all the fans who speculated that it would be easy for the developers to patch in online multiplayer and a legitimately purposeful parody of your typical MMORPG.

Yesterday I tried Goat MMO Simulator out for the first time live with a couple of friends, so if you want a taste of what this DLC has in store just watch for yourself (above).

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Posted at 12:00 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Day in the Life of One of Second Life's Most Stylish Avatars

O'Clock Magazine 5 Matilda SoonJanine "Iris Ophelia" Hawkins' ongoing review of gaming and virtual world style

O'Clock is a Second Life fashion magazine with a damn clever premise. It follows a single featured avatar through their "day", starting in the morning, with each spread themed around their daily activities. It's an interesting twist on its own, but this month's issue of O'Clock is even more special. Issue number five's highlighted avatar is Matilda Soon, a mature lady who oozes class out of every virtual pore.

Matilda's not the first stylish avatar to take on the chic older woman look, but unlike many of the others she might share the category with Matilda's not too married to her cateye frames and pearls. She dresses the part of an aging Coco Chanel as easily as she slips into trendier, more contemporary galaxy-prints and geometric motifs. In fact one of my favorite spreads in the magazine features Matilda's morning yoga routine, expertly shot without an ounce of farce or comedy.

That's an important aspect of Matilda, too. She's absolutely not a joke, and she's made that abundantly clear:

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