My 5 Favorite Second Life Machinimas of 2015

Perfect watching while wrapping Christmas presents or preparing to eat Chinese food or airing grievances, here's my favorite five SL-made machinimas this year, with some background on each at each link:

Watch Bryn Oh's "Scissors", the Best Second Life Machinima You May See This Year

Monday SL Machinima Features a Small Town With Secrets

Three more beyond the break!

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Watch This: The Size of Second Life Even Now

Luca Grabacr made this pretty great machinima infographic illustrating the size of Second Life as it exists today:

All the data seems fairly up to date, but I haven't seen it presented as dramatically as here. Why no, I didn't now it would take 23,175 days to walk across the entirety of Second Life's land mass (if all the sims were laid end to end) -- so that would make SL's total length like 772 miles? (Assuming you walked 30 miles a day.) Checking with Luca on her sources now.* Also love Luca's mention of the first Linden-made object in Second Life:

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Second Life's Ambient Soundscape: VOIP Noise & Troll Audio

This video is pretty juvenile AF, but seeing as we were just discussing Second Life's ambient sounds, it's a perfect illustration of a point I was making then: Overwhelmingly, the soundscape of Second Life is streaming music and voice chat. And, of course, troll noises. But somewhat ironically, the voice chat can be just as intrusive and disruptive as irksome honks and fart noises, because you don't just hear voices, but every other noise being picked up by the users' microphones:

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SL Art & Machinima Contest with L$500K+ in Prizes

SL Art & machinima contest

That seriously smashing transhumanist machinima I featured yesterday is actually an entry into a massive 3D art and machinima contest sponsored by the University of Western Australia (UWA), which has a long-term presence in Second Life -- go here for all the details.

Submission deadline is very soon, October 30th, but if you wade through the dense and difficult to read rules and background, you'll notice it's pretty open-ended -- any submission that reflects the theme "'Pursue Impossible'" is acceptable, so you could probably repurpose an existing project to fit it.

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Dazzling Machinima Illustrates Transhumanist Ideas With Images from the World's First Metaverse

Ray Kurzweil thinks we're going to upload our consciousnesses into a future version of Second Life, so it makes sense that a video devoted to his ideas and others associated with transhumanism should be shot in Second Life - watch:

As longtime NWN readers probably guessed by now, the machinima is by Tutsy Navarantha, a master at assembling a montage of dazzzling SL images underlying some very potent ideas, mixed to Indian-inflected electronica.

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Watch Bryn Oh's "Scissors", the Best Second Life Machinima You May See This Year

I didn't see "Scissors", a machinima by acclaimed metaverse artist Bryn Oh, when it went online last August -- and if you haven't either, drop what you're doing and watch it right now:

I love the perfect blending of the music with dark shadows, the silhouette figures, the insects, the rain, all taking advantage of Second Life's best features, while avoiding its weak points. Some more on the machinima from the description:

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Watch A Feature-Length Machinima Based on Milton's Paradise Lost

Paradise Lost is an epic and ambitious feature-length Second Life machinima based on Milton's Paradise Lost available for viewing for tickets of L$1000 -- which might seem strange, since machinima is usually just put on YouTube for free. But it's actually an edited recording of a live, avatar-based ballet performance that played to sell-out crowds in Second Life last year to some 400 audience members.

"Putting it on video," explains director Canary Beck, who also directed the play, "enables everyone - regardless of timezone - to see my work in their home, on-demand." (Canary, as regular readers know, is also a part-time contributor to this blog.)

The original production emerged from a fashion scene Canary created for an SL brand based around Romeo and Juliet, which inspired her to reach for another classic work:

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Live Stream: SL Photography Tips, With Occasional Clown

Here's the dulcet-voiced SL fashionista Strawberry Singh to walk you through Second Life photography tips while live in Second Life:

Recorded from her live stream, it's a lot more engaging than any offline/over-polished video tutorials I've seen, because you can feel the sense of serendipity that any off-the-cuff, live broadcast has. Related to that, the sudden death clown cameo is a nice touch.

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Monday SL Machinima Features a Small Town With Secrets

To start Monday right, here's a beautifully shot and edited machinima depicting a small town community with lazy, sun-lit streets and secrets behind closed doors:

From Erythro Asimov and Pepa Cometa, it was shot in an impressively textured sim called Crestwick and features a cast of dozens, along with the great music of Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings.

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Explore Second Life With New Website & YouTube Channel

Explore SL is a new-ish website which as the title suggests, features great Second Life sites, illustrated both by a blog post and a YouTube video, the latest being the utterly beautiful and dreamy Chouchou sim:

With so many great SL sites disappearing seemingly every week, it's a relief to realize Chouchou is still around after all these years:

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