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Friday, March 23, 2012

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foneco zuzu

Comparing a company like Bethesda to Linden Lab?
One that only creates Offline game with one that provide the World with a tool to our dreams?

Pathfinder

I think the main reason people think the animals look "pathetic" is because they are not rigged/animated mesh models. And they're not rigged/animated because that's a feature not available in SL.

All the animated animals in my Jibe world are rigged and animated mesh models. Which is why they look alive. http://jibemicro.reactiongrid.com/pathfinderlester/

Chestnut Rau

Actually, foneco zuzu there is tons of user created content for Skyrim. If you do a simple google search you will find it.

I have often heard the reason SL builds are not as amazing as games like Skyrim is precisely because it is user created content. Amateurs like myself don't have the skills to build as well as the pros who make games for Bethesda and others. One would think Linden Lab could create professional quality animals, which was really my point.

Adeon Writer

I'd say this is the most well-made Linden area on the grid. There are resident made areas that look much better, but that is how sandbox environments always work!

I wish they'd stop pushing these areas as premium perks, though. And that's coming from a premium user.

And as to the animals looking like toy robots, well, that's why we need riggable objects.

Ehrman Digfoot

I'm glad to hear we're starting to raise awareness about the need for riggable objects. The only way to pathfind a rigged mesh, that I can think of, with the current system would be to create an alt for each and attach them to a pathfinding vehicle object and manually animate them. And that would eliminate all of the resource saving benefits of the pathfinding project. The alternative, animation by UUID flipping is ugly, incomplete and resource hogging. (See: http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/Why_UUID_Flipping_is_Bad ) Rigged animal objects really would complete the Second Life Wilderness and make it a premium Experience.

Uccello

I'm rather enamored with the new Wilderness areas. As Ehrman wrote, the experience is quite immersive. Scale is at the heart as most anyone with more than one region can create a broader experience, but the individual regions have distinct yet complimentary characters. Everyone I've talked to feels that they are indeed traveling a vast, living landscape, despite the static critters and somewhat cartoonish elements. Very few reviews I've read have bothered mentioning the interactive elements, like the mini-games and various activities. I wonder if folks have really given it a try or simply popped in with low expectations.

Cio Koba

Im there right now, and I think its quite impressive, the atmosphere is perfect. If could get a boat it would be like apocalypsis now.. wait.. maybe I can..
of course it can be improved and although rigged animals would be awsome Ive seen some normal everyday sculpted animals, the ones form extreme island for example, that would do a good job just now. Maybe he could lend some to LL for free, I would..

Cio Koba

Btw, if you enter SL expecting something like skyrim or any other GOTY candidate, wake up!!!

Elsbeth Writer

Well, I visited the Wilderness and was completely disappointed. Almost everything is mesh and since I have an older computer which is all I can afford, I cannot see mesh. All I see is squares and cylinders. Does the lab actually think everyone is mesh compatable?

Adeon Writer

You don't need a good computer to run mesh. I run mesh on a craptop! :P

Dizzy Banjo

I just checked out Wilderness. It was disappointing. For a number of reasons :

1. It tries to be a Skyrim / Dear Esther wonderous exploratory type experience and fails - this is not just because there are lacking graphical and modelling features within SL. Its also due to the fundamental architecture of SL as a streaming platform. Performance was appalling, even after a number of minutes of rezzing in. If LL are seriously going to take the strategy of trying to impress new users with rich visual experiences then this in itself completely blows that hope. Its not worth wasting the Mole's time building all that stuff.

2. As a showcase, it doesn't showcase any of SL's USPs. It ignores UGC, ignores collaboration and creation. Ignores social. It felt like a static experience I was encouraged to walk around and just look at. SL is best at changing / being created in realtime, creating social events and excels in the abstract.

By this I mean, its much stronger when the graphical design is tailored to suit the capabilities of the architecture. One very powerful example of using SL in this way was the work of the artist Adam Ramona / Adam Nash - sadly now no longer using SL.

One other comment. It was interesting to see LL moles attempting to use sound design in their work. However it was roughly executed. Creating rich soundscapes is one area where SL can just about deliver. But this was clearly a relatively small number of poorly recorded looping playback objects.

If it was still around I would point to the Mexico Ruta Maya and Costa Rica sims we did in SL a number of years ago, which far exceeded this build in terms of sonic immersion with sound design.

Karma Avedon

Obviously Wilderness is getting mixed reports. I definitely fall into the side of feeling underwhelmed and agree with Chestnut. Without going through item by item, I will just say that Wilderness, much like Linden Realms, is a great execution with a lack of creativity. It works as a functioning project, but I don't see much in the way of creativity in these endeavors. I can tick off two or three sims in SL that are much more amazing to experience, and that perform better. I would expect, with all the resources at LL's disposal, for the opposite to be true.

It also goes back to the dreaded "Be a vampire" advertising campaign. The work on that just seemed amateur at best. Does LL have a "creative department" or an "art department" per se? I am not being critical, I would really like to know. While I am impressed with their technical advances of late, there just seems to be a tremendous lack of vision at LL.

shockwave yareach

Before you can create a sim with amazing content that makes people want to join, you have to be able to create amazing content that makes people want to join. If the goal is to make SL look like Skyrim then I'd say it's a dismal failure. If the goal is to make a relaxation zone, it's not terrible.

EileenK

I am mesh blind due to older video cards on two machines, but I was still able to get around in Linden Wilderness...well sort of. The sims do degrade gracefully. The animals were mostly what I could not see, and I saw enough of them that the brightly colored cubes made excellent trail markers. Trail markers turn out to be very useful and alas necessary.

A bigger problem was that the foliage textures took forever to rez. As someone who builds plants (They're low prim and easy to make), this is a disappointment because it doesn't have to be that way. By the way, I liked the bromiliads and the wild ginger, and yes, they look phallic. That's realism for you!

The biggest problem with Linden sims, however, was that they are very much like those old robot toys parents used to give their kids at Christmas. The kid would turn it on, watch it walk around, and when the batteries ran out...forget it, if they did not all ready break the toy trying to teach it something new.

The wilderness sims, what I've seen of them, are a one use toy. If you don't believe me, just walk off the trail. Why shouldn't you walk off the trail? There are no ban lines. There is mud or maybe quicksand. My avie was up to her neck in it. In Piranha she ended up under the dock, not that she minded since she has a swimmer HUD.

And yes, there is not much about these sims that I can tell is original. If you want an immersive experience, I can suggest four or five sims (many of them commercial and recreational) for swimming, waterslides, skiing, para-sailing, a noisy club, shopping, basketball...you get the idea. There are sims where you can cross the whole island without a ban line or security orb in sight. And you don't have to stay on the path! You won't fall into the muck up to your butt, chest, or shoulders.

I'd like to thank Chestnut for posting her images. The mud is still there even though she can see mesh, and there is no warning that it is soft.

Faye4Kakia

I checked it out using a laptop, and had no troubles as far as performance. I thought it was very pretty, but I can't go with anyone I know, so I won't be back. But I think it's for the newbies, anyways. The animals looked a bit silly, kind of like a really old Disney jungle ride or something... But without guest passes, no fun for me!

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