|The viewer is “Singularity” in some views, but it all looks familiar.|
The Second Life alternative AVINATION (they like ALL CAPS) bills itself on it’s viewer home screen as “The Unique Virtual Experience,” though having spent a couple hours in-world so far, I don’t see much that is different. Sure, I can make a 256m2 prim to cover a whole sim and the types of prims available for construction are rather varied, but really it seems like Second Life of yore … the clunky v1.x interface and choppy video, plus I could choose a last name upon sign up. You’ll find me there as Torii Heron. I could have been Uccello Poultry despite that last name not being a choice if I went through a brief change process, but this was faster.
|This could be briefing in Second Life.|
The viewer, as I mentioned, uses the Second Life v1.x UI, but it borrows heavily from other Third Party Viewers with features such as the old Phoenix-style breast physics and being able to control the teensiest of preferences. The texture display panes are nicer than any viewer I’ve seen in terms of detail given, including whether the texture has an alpha (or “clear” to noobs) component. Very nice.
My stock avie, one from a choice of three male or three female, has sculpty boots with invisiprims (no alpha-layer body parts) and flex hair. Unlike other worlds I won’t name, the makers didn’t steal Eloh Eliott skins for the base avies so I’m rather pasty and plain.
|I could have skipped the noobie tutorial course after sign up, but I was curious. It was very much like Second Life, right down to the Chat Parrot.|
Fortunately, there is lots of high-level commerce available to make me beautify, for a price. Use PayPal to buy Care Coins (C$) on what they are calling the LindeX Currency Exchange … yes, there are lots of Second Life terms used all over, including a message that cache will be cleared when Second Life restarts … and you can shop with folks you may already know, such as Xcite and Vista Animations, popular SL brands (see more here).
A staff member always seems to be present at the New Resident Welcome area (SLurl … yes, its called SLurl, even inside the URL itself) which is also a shopping mall for things like the AO you’ll need and a better skin. Very limited freebies are available outside in the common area and none were found in the mall itself. I don’t have PayPal so I couldn’t buy credits to upload my own clothes let alone buy new sets.
The regions I explored were pretty typical Second Life … lots of bleak urban landscape made by people who seem to be overly emo. There is but one sandbox, in a region called Sandbox (works for me). Nightclubs and bars are everywhere. Full Bright is a popular option for those building shopping malls (filled with stuff that looks like Business-in-a-Box items from Second Life) and at the third place I map-hopped to, a casino. Yes, a casino filled with Zyngo machines. Lastly, the noob experience was complete for me when I flew by other folks while minding my own business and I was spammed with friend requests.
|Found in Landro (SLurl). I don’t know if Melanie Miland is the same person who created these exact same items in Second Life or not. Lots of textures used in AVINATION builds are straight out of SL.|
So, other than shopping and gambling and building with megrims, what is there to do? Several pages on the AVINATION web site indicate that combat role play is a popular activity, but I haven’t seen it yet. Right away, though, opportunities for Capture Role Play popped up (*sigh*) and places to have sex were advertised. The feeling that this world is like the American Wild West … a barely tame frontier … was pervasive. That would make Second Life the Old World, a more genteel and mature place from which we all want to leave to find a better place but secretly long to never leave because it is our home.
I think I’ll stay home more.