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Second Life Still Alive

I’ve been spending a lot of my time recently in Second Life. Mostly attending special events, clubs and some games. I sometimes will find a good club with a live DJ and just dance while I actually work in RL. Other times I’ll find a nice place to camp but getting $2L for 20 minutes with a maximum of $20L per day just isn’t worth the trouble. There are some camping out there which gives out a lot more but usually I find the same amounts as I described. I have sat on some of the camping chairs to get a free product. Sat for some shoes for 4 hours.

Second Life is still surviving after all these years and doing well

I recently found a blog post which describes a nielsen rating for March 2009 of Top PC Game Titles. Second Life came in at #2 with WOW at the very top. There is a big discussion going on in that post which I’ll leave for interested users to read. What the chart really says is that users of Second Life play it a lot more hours then users of the other games. There was also a correction post describing that SL was the 8th game in popularity in the nielsen ratings. In my opinion, Second Life, has a small amount of users but those users are dedicated and find many reasons to play for hours a day. I find the nielsen chart to be very interesting from my own personal experiences. I find myself wanting to find new places to explore, create new stuff and make new friends. SL is more a social place for many people I talk to. There is a wide amount of different communities for everything. I also find a lot more international people doing business inside SL.

I still think SL has some promises but there are some major competition coming up this and next year. I think Second Life will still be the best virtual world for user created content. Some of the upcoming virtual worlds may get more advertisers from big companies, though. That could get more users to their worlds and leave SL behind.

Open Source Virtual Worlds

Open life is another grid to play on like Second Life

I haven’t been active in Second Life for months now and figured I’d check up on it again. When I was reading other blogs I found a link to Opensim which is an open source project working on their own server similar to Second Life. In fact with every grid I checked out I used the Second Life client to connect. The servers I tried weren’t very busy but I was really only checking out how it compares to Second Life. There’s plenty of stuff that is missing and they are maybe years from getting everything to the level of Second Life.

Just by copying the shortcut for second life and adding some parameters you can log into one of these servers easily. Changing your appearance isn’t explained very well. You start off with a basic female avatar. You have to create a body, eye, skin and hair parts so you can wear and change them. On OSgrid you can play around with web pages on a prim! The most interesting thing I found was when I read articles about how they want to hook these grids up to Second Life and be able to move your avatar from one grid to another. It also seems like Second Life have plans of something like that too. With IBM and Microsoft interested in this project it looks very promising for the future.

Opensim is for making Grids for Second Life

After I played around with the other servers I decided to see if I can start a server of my own on my computer. I tried building with the source code but I got errors. Didn’t want to figure out why so I downloaded the already built server file. Got a server running on my windows system in minutes. Logged in and could walk and fly around a small island. To me that’s impressive and if these servers get more popular it could be very competitive to Second Life.

New Tringo on the block and it has TEETH!

Version 2.0 of Tringo is now being played in Second Life

I was lucky to find an event at 1am on March 1st in Second Life by Kermitt Quirk. I was searching for tringo games but didn’t find many except for something called tringo 2. Had to check it out and was amazed at all the options in this new version. The game comes with new block patterns, new style of playing and a brand new look! I didn’t even recognise the game when I got to the way2play.com island.

The board of Tringo looks really nice now

The cards come out tumbling toward you when you click on the board. The cards look like a calculator with the score to the right side and the current block on the left side. Their are 20 different block sets each one with different strategies to get a high score. I was getting beaten up with some of these blocks. I was stuck in the first 5 moves playing with the wall block set. If you hated the X block in regular tringo you will hate the spotless pattern which has no middle block. There’s the smiley block set which was fun but challenging. The castle block set with a lot of big blocks looking like the letter A. Deathstar pattern with some having no block in the middle. The classic block set from the original version is available also!

Some of the other patterns are duck, eagle, snowflake, windmill, anchor, pacman, ghost, peace, pi, pipes, pyramid, star, teddy and tringo set. Another new feature is when you win you get fireworks coming from your board. It has a better way of splitting prize money when there is a tie between 2 or more players. The main board shows the top 10 scores and is just one piece instead of two pieces like in the original. The host can also set the number of rounds to play where the board resets at the end of each round but keeping your scores until all the rounds are played.

The best added feature is the different game variations, which are classic, last man standing and progressive. The Last Man Standing (LMS) is the best variation to play on some of the difficult block sets. If you can’t place a block on your board you are out of the game. The last player still in the game and with the highest score wins the pot! With the classic block set the game can last for hours with good players. The highest score I saw was 1000 and it took over 20 minutes to play. This should be a big hit with some of the tournament events for the future!

Kermitt Quirk showing off new version of Tringo in Second LifeTringo version 2.0 main board in Second Life

The progressive mode starts at a slower speed for the first round and then gets faster for each round played until it’s on speed which allows you 5 seconds to place your piece. This can be fun but I don’t expect this variation will be too popular. Also all the games can be set at any speed the host wants from 25 seconds to 5 seconds which is nice! I like it at 7 seconds.

During the month of March, Kermitt Quirk has his tringo 2 board setup at way2play.com island. They have game events every day with different hosts. Most of the time the winner of the previous game picks the block set to play in the next game. Which brings in another reason to try to win so you can pick your favorite set. I’ve played all the block sets except for star. Some are easy and others are very challenging.

On April 1st it will be available to buy for anyone and should be seeing it throughout the world. At this time it’s only exclusive to the way2play island. The more people who play and find bugs the more stable the game will become. Kermitt will also listen to suggestions and problems so he can make it better. The one thing I want is some sound especially at the beginning of the game so I know when it starts. I sometimes miss it and too late to get a good score. Buyers may buy the classic tringo 1.2 game from this island and receive tringo 2 for free when it is available!

They have also released the pc downloadable version of the classic tringo game. You can either go to the island and click on the ads all over the place or go to their website here. The free trial version can be played for 45 minutes and then you must buy the full version. If you like the game that much then this is a good way of playing better! You will also find t-shirts you can buy on the island for $25L!

Other related links:

Let your VOICE be heard in Second Life

Adding voice feature in Second Life

CNET News.com is reporting that Second Life will have a beta test of their new voice chatting capability. They will be using the Vivox voice services with spatial audio. This will allow voices to be heard from different positions. A person to your right will be heard from the right speaker and so on.

The beta test will be free for the month of march for a selected few people and then be launched for everyone at the end of the month. People will be able to speak to others around their avatar in group chat style up to 100 people. There is also a private chat where you can speak to a person anywhere in SL privately. Another option is speaking to a group of people located anywhere in SL. The only price I found is for land owners who can turn on or off the voice capability for a price. I haven’t found out how much it would cost for the regular user. Guess we will have to wait and see what will happen.

I am not a talkative person so this isn’t exciting to me as it is to others. I would rather type in chat And I fear that the ones who don’t use the voice chat will be the outsiders. Maybe I will just have to buy a headset and try it for a bit. I can’t see it being used at a music or movie event that’s for sure! Quiet in the front!!

Wii Controls World of Warcraft and Second Life

Was checking out some videos on youtube and came across something about the wii that I found very interesting. The wii remote or wiimote uses bluetooth technology so some people have figured out how to use it as a device for a computer. There are device drivers for the wiimote on the mac and for windows now. Some people have used it to control the cursor by moving or turning the remote around. Others have used it to have some fun like using it a light saber noise maker.

The most interesting thing to me is that you can control pc games with the remote! This really makes me want to get a wii or just buy a wiimote to try this stuff out! I found a lot of people trying it out on different games. It can also be used to control World of Warcraft:

There was an interview of a blizzard developer who didn’t feel it was the best way to control your character in WOW. It still looks and must feel really cool though. I’m sure as people update these drivers things like this will get a lot more interesting.

People can use the Wii controller in Second Life

There is even a way to use it in Second Life. You can get the instructions and scripts from Mi 72,48,94. Seems very easy to me but is it something which can enhance the SL experience? I don’t have a wiimote to try these things out but I’m sure others do and will find this an interesting thing to experiment with. Adam Reuters found it interesting and interviewed Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime about Second Life. I can see lot of potential with other programs and other controllers in the future which will allow much more reality into virtual reality.

Links to Wiimote related stuff: