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Monday, September 24, 2018


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Eleri Ethaniel

These peeps have never played any of the Cyan games, have they? Especially Uru/Myst Online. The whole *point* is glorious interconnected worlds to explore, that don't need use areas for "combat" or "gameplay". And people are still visiting and enjoying those worlds daily (So much so, that it spawned off open source Age building, and a tabletop RPG).

People don't go to/use large interconnected spaces in the real world? Has this guy never heard of National Parks? Some of the most visited, explored spaces in the USA?

The only use for virtual worlds outside of 'gameplay' is social interaction? What a horrible, limiting idea. People go to virtual worlds for exploration, or quiet, or to persue a creative endeavor. It doesn't require gameplay content or a social group for vitural worlds to be interesting and valuable. In fact, I think pigeonholing virtual worlds into "social space and/or gameplay space" is to completely hamstring the possibilities of virtual worlds.


I mostly agree with Eleri. I sometimes visit Sansar and HF, and one of the things I don't care much about is that the user created worlds are totally separated from each other, and you are visiting a completely different world each time you teleport. It is like visiting another website.

I like the world map in SL where you can have the feeling of being somewhere in this world, and there are all those places and people you can spot on it.
Even though I don't often travel around "on foot" in SL, I love the long stretching scenery or even on the map when the lands are connected. It is special.


Eleri is right.

We aren't talking of just going to to point A to point B, but of something enjoyable. If I have to go to a club to another club, I'd just teleport. If it's a roleplay our journey may be the fun part instead. But besides games, exploration can be enjoyable by itself, as well as admiring what other people created all these years.

And virtual world could be like Flight Simulator too, at the same time a sailing / cruise / regatta simulator, plus a Euro Truck Simulator, plus car racing, ... all this together plus the whole social part. I know Flight Simulator users that enjoy SL better for that reason, even if technically is a pain because of the sim crossings.
BTW Euro Truck simulator 2, a game that's all about traveling, is one of the most popular games on Steam and with a concurrency peaks of 40k (and some people use it offline etc)
And that's just Euro Truck. So I think that there is a bunch of people who enjoy this kind of things. Even with all those issues SL has, there is still a community that makes the Blake Sea and the surrounding area pretty successful (for SL), and the vehicle market was profitable in Second Life for years. Now think the market Second Life missed because sim crossings kills most of that and could have been a War Thunder too. SL would be likely have a larger user base now, and it would be more experience rich, more enjoyable and more alive.


I'd add that the "real life is better" argument is quite weak, sorry John:
«Surly the only use for virtual worlds, beyond games playing, is social interaction, and by far the majority of the most beautiful sensual experiences you can have socially take place in the smallest of spaces. And if you truly wished to experience wandering endlessly in a beautiful environment then try the real world, it beats the hell out of any virtual world you will ever find.»
Yes, they do, so why you aren't coherent? If you like those social interactions and sensual experiences, go to experience them in real life, that would beats the hell out of any virtual experience, no? Really a ton better too: even just a real hug or walking hand in hand or a kiss is another planet, compared to emoting and watching 2 avatars moving, even if you are a very immersive person that you kind of feel like you are there. So what are you still doing there in a virtual world?

Now let's see what sensual experiences people look for in Second Life. If you don't count the camping places (poledancing too, but mostly all those AFK places that thee are now) and you sort adult stuff places by traffic, what do you see? It's mostly things that you can't do easily in real life, up to some that would send you straight to jail or that they are entirely impossible. They range from bdsm to furry, Gor, rape (even vore and snuff), shemales / being different genders, interracial, and so on, and I don't want to know what "Grampa Garage" is almost atop the list. At most there is some beach, and even those maybe because you can't go to a beach any time of the day, any day of the year.
Yeah, people fantasize. I don't mean it's just a fantasy, someone can fall in love for real. I hope they aren't going to try vore in real life though.

So, sure, real world experiences are way better, but besides the limited money and time and availability, how can you visit the Titanic or the battleship Yamato or a full standing ancient Roman villa? And even if something still exists, how do you visit the ISS, if you aren't a selected astronaut for the mission? Elon Musk plans to add a VR experience to BFR, so you could "travel" on it among the real space tourists.
And what if one is disabled and can't move much in real life? What if it's night or it's raining, or you are amid a metropolis and you would like to relax and to imagine yourself in some quiet peaceful place amid the nature?
And should I go to buy a real horse, a Ferrari or a yacht sailing boat in real life? Or a private jet?

There is a reason for simulations and virtual experiences.

Clara Seller

I still feel attachment to some of the mainland sims that I called home in my early days of SL. Things change, but the terrain and waterways remain the same.

SL is full of a lot of good ideas that needed to be cared for and developed. There should have been areas of mainland that met different needs and came with a variety of mild zoning and building restrictions. The whole thing didn't need to be capitalistic chaos.

If SL evolved into selfie-snapping dollies playing dress-up in tiny little boxes, it doesn't necessarily mean that's what everyone really wanted their life to be. It's like if boneheads had a chance to build a new Earth and added lots of war, isolation, and poverty in the plans because so many people ended up there the last time. They must like it, right?

Alazarin Mobius

Horses for courses. Some people have the wherewithal to build up entire regions. Others don't. Some parts of the mainland have turned out beautifully. Other parts look like random junk thrown into a dumpster. Some island estates are works of art. Others are such eyesores they make your eyes bleed.

I'm a bit biased towards the mainland but I can see that some of the more thought-out estate creations would have been difficult to pull off on the mainland. So, yeah, it's all good. Vive la difference!

sirhc deSantis

Agree with Eleri Ethaniel (and pretty much others so far). And yes I am fond of the mainland and glad to be back after a long time on an island. As for the 'intensly social metaverse' well yeah. Including the bits that actually involve travelling for fun (as has been mentioned here before) which is why we sell vehicles :)

Think John there would be happier in FaceBorgWorld? After all 'The rest of us already have the kind of world we want' and the working better bit is a tad Sherlock.

Han Held

Thank you, Pulsar for driving a very excellent point home. To dismissively blow off all of the other non-faceborg uses of virtual worlds is both staggeringly myopic (tunnel vision, in other words) and jaw-droppingly unempathic and insensitive (go back and re-read Pulsar's point about the disabled, and about cash and then re-read it until it sinks fucking in; we'll happily wait).


Also, people use SL in more than one way. In one session they might use it as a social media chat room then role play a pirate, then take fashion pics to post to a blog. Being disabled, SL has been my point of contact with the world outside of my immediate environment. I love sailing in SL but in RL I would have difficulty boarding a boat much less sailing it. SL is unique in offer the feel of a world rather than just rooms or individual sites.


This reminds me of the "4 Types of Gamers" model. Just like it i would say it depends on each person. I definitely am big part into exploring and love huge interactive worlds. The Mainland has something very special to it, it's an unusual exploring compared to other worlds or games since there no strict theme,subject or restrictions everyone orientates their creations after. This can both make it more or less interesting in my opinion. It would be cool if there would be entirely themed mainland regions. On another thought the Mainland has something historical feeling when you explore the Mainland for example and find an "ancient" train-track and train from 2003. Sure it does not look like anything close to being cool or awesome but just the imagination that this thing was already there when i was a child and is still there is...kinda cool.

I mostly explore the Mainland by Kayaking! I often take a friend with me and we spend hours just chatting and telling stories as we cruise around the mainland maybe find funny stuff or cool places or ruins of "ancient" times. Other transportation methods other than naval options are rather difficult due to sim crossing.

Lately i noticed the same effect i had in some other games just like GTA.
I don't go for landmarks anymore for cool places on the mainland but rather just remember it where on the map is was.

Aliasi Stonebender

John C is wrong, however forthright he is. As noted, there's more than one way to use SL. One person poofs point to point to their favorite clubs. Another likes jumping in a car and driving for virtual miles. Other people simply like the idea of living in a large, contiguous area (tell the people in Caledon or the Wastelands they're doing it wrong!).

It's like claiming that because I can chat in World of Warcraft, why do I need a social-focused online world? I can do BOTH in Minecraft, so why do I want Second Life? Part of that is Second Life allows you to do *all* of these things. Sometimes I just want to go somewhere. Sometimes I want to roam. Sometimes I want to build, and sometimes I just want to see cool stuff other people have made.

Specialization isn't always the right option.

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