Second Life Steals, Deals and Freebies: A Newbie Avatar Makeover in Half an Hour, for Only Two Linden Dollars!

Every so often, for fun, I like to create a brand new avatar from scratch, then give myself exactly half an hour to try and see just how well I can give her a makeover. I try to transform her from a starter newbie to a look that is as stylish and non-newbie as possible, taking advantage of any gifts and offers for avatars under 30 days.

I refer to the Under 30 Days list of gifts and offers from the FabFree blog, and let me tell you, there are not nearly as many freebies for newbies as there were in the old days! It’s actually rather sad. Good thing there are all kinds of other steals and deals on the grid!

Today I took the starter Elizabeth avatar, as shown here:

Newbie Ellizabeth 16 May 2018

(*sigh* Those bulbous system avatar ankles…)


And I challenged myself to give her not just one, but two looks: one for daytime, and the other for evening.

Here is the day look (please click on the pictures to see them in a larger size):

My avatar is wearing:

Mesh Head and Mesh Eyes: Kenna mesh head from Genesis Lab (group gift; limited time free group join)

Mesh Body: eBody Classic avatar body (L$1 at the freebie store at Ajuda SL Brasil or directly from the eBody store; note that the dollarbie version of this mesh body has only “thick” alpha sections on the HUD, not the finer alpha sections on the full-price version, which means that you have to be somewhat careful what you wear on it)

Hair: Melek fitted mesh hair by Sentinus (free from the Free Dove)

Sweater: Turtleneck Sweater by Coco Designs (free group gift; group is free to join)

Jeans: black Margot jeans by EccentriciXi (free gift for avatars under 30 days; use the provided SLURL to locate the black cubes and click on them to get a very nice starter wardrobe for your avatar!)

Shoes: Classic black pumps by Marquesse (free at the freebie store at Ajuda SL Brasil; this shoe comes in four colours; note that the eBody Classic mesh avatar body has Slink-compatible feet)

AO Standing Pose: Female Basic Mocap AO by Vista Animations (L$1; located at the back of the female AO section of the store)


And here is my newbie avatar’s evening look. I took advantage of the free L$500 gift card offer from Kastle Rock Couture to outfit her (you can find the offer at this SLURL, you just click the box on the ground; this offer is only for newbies under 30 days old; please click on the pictures below to see them in a larger size):

My avatar is wearing the same mesh head, eyes, body and AO as before, with these additions…

Choker: Nina Choker by RxK (free from Ajuda SL Brasil; I tried to pick a skin tone for the eBody Classic mesh body to match the Genesis Kenna head as best I could, but there was still a slight seam visible, so the choker covers that)

Gown: pink Monarch strapless gown by Kastle Rock Couture (currently on sale for L$99 in the Kastle Rock Sale Room, which leaves me with another L$401 on the gift certificate to spend on more outfits!)

Shoes: Classic white pumps by Marquesse (free at the freebie store at Ajuda SL Brasil; this shoe comes in four colours; note that the eBody Classic mesh avatar body has Slink-compatible feet)

Hair: I decided to keep the Elizabeth starter avatar updo hairstyle (some things just cannot be improved upon!)

And there you have it! The total cost of both outfits was L$2—L$1 for the eBody mesh avatar body and another L$1 for the AO.

Advertisements

Another Look at Virtual Universe’s Fun and Intuitive Creator Toolset Prototype

FULL DISCLOSURE: I am choosing to participate in the Virtual Universe (VU) Initial Coin Offering Partner Program. Why? Two reasons:

  1. After my recent guided tour of VU, I feel very strongly that this is going to be a successful and popular virtual world/MMO hybrid platform, and I want to be a part of it when VU launches their beta this summer. This is the very first blockchain-based virtual world that I actually feel excited about!
  2. As a Canadian citizen, I reside in one of the three countries where I am currently legally forbidden from purchasing VU tokens (the other two are the United States and China). This means that the only way I can legitimately earn VU tokens to use in this social VR space before the beta launch is via the VU ICO Partner Program.

I want you to know this up front: this blogpost is a promotion for VU, in exchange for VU tokens.  You can follow on this webpage to see how many VU tokens I have earned by completing tasks in this Partner Program if you wish (right now, I am at number three on the VU Token Leaderboard). There’s nothing stopping you from participating in this Partner Program yourself, and earning some VU tokens!

IMPORTANT: VU Tokens are not a real currency. They are ERC-20 based blockchain tokens intended to permit players of Virtual Universe exclusive access to digital assets within a VR game known as Virtual Universe (VU). They are a form of in-game virtual currency.  Virtual value attributed to the VU Token will be as a result of in-game efforts by players, and no future value is represented or guaranteed.


Jeroen Van den Bosch, Virtual Universe’s Chief Creative Officer and co-founder, has shared a 3-minute YouTube video about the creator toolset prototype used in VU:

As I have said before, I think this is an innovative and interesting way to create content within a VR experience. You can use tools very similar to those in the VR experience Nature Treks VR to arrange rocks and plant trees, simply by throwing balls into the air. Where the ball lands, you plant a tree or a rock, or release a bluebird!

I got a chance to play with this myself when I had my recent guided tour of Virtual Universe, and it is indeed a fun and intuitive way to create a VR experience!

Ready Player One: Movie Review

Today I finally watched the virtual-reality-themed movie Ready Player One.

First, now that I have actually seen the movie, I am truly amazed at how accurately and painstakingly Sansar Studios was able to recreate both the Aech’s Garage and Aech’s Basement scenes from the movie. Kudos to Linden lab for doing such a fantastic job! I have been able to compare the movie and the Sansar experiences (see images below), and only now do I realize just how much work it must have taken to build these two experiences. Bravo, Linden Lab!

Movie Nite 4 16 May 2018.png
Aech’s Garage (scene from the movie Ready Player One)
Aech's Garage 16 May 2018.png
Aech Garage (the Sansar experience)
Movie Nite 7 16 May 2018.png
Aech’s Basement (scene from the movie Ready Player One)
Aech's Basement 16 May 2018.png
Aech’s Basement (the Sansar experience)

Second, they put an actual Infinadeck in the movie, when they showed Wade Watts walking on the VR treadmill in his van! I wrote about this omnidirectional treadmill earlier on my blog. It’s not a product available for sale yet, but the company have started a Beta Unit Testing Program for application developers. Very, very cool! I want one!!!

Infinadeck-1-1024x691.jpg

I thought the movie was very enjoyable and very well done (of course, Steven Spielberg is a master of his craft of movie-making). The plot was somewhat different from the science fiction novel by Ernest Cline on which it was based, but the differences made narrative sense within the film.

Movie Nite 10 16 May 2018.png

I laughed at all the 1980s references liberally sprinkled throughout the movie, especially at the part about the Holy Hand Grenade (from Monty Python, of course!). It’s the kind of movie you could watch several times over, just to catch all the sly references to ’80s culture.

Movie Nite 6 16 May 2018.png

All in all, I absolutely loved the movie.

I can recommend the Ready Player One movie (and the Ernest Cline novel upon which it is based) wholeheartedly and unreservedly. Go see it/read it!

Second Life Steals, Deals and Freebies: Queen of Hearts Gown by Whymsical Marketplace

This absolutely gorgeous red, white and black silk Queen of Hearts gown, with a high starched gold-trimmed collar and gold and red embroidery, is a free gift from Whymsical Marketplace in the Alice in Wonderland hunt which is currently going on in Second Life. It’s a must-get item if you do historical roleplay in SL. Or perhaps, you simply want to go around screaming “Off with their heads!” at everybody. (Hey, it’s Second Life! You do what you want 😉 )

You are searching for a key with a White Rabbit’s head on it. The hunt hint is: “The Fairy holds the key to your gift”. (It’s very easy to find!)

Here’s what the gown looks like. Click on each picture to see it in a larger size:

My avatar is wearing:

Mesh Head: Lulu Bento mesh head by Akeruka (Over the past year, Akeruka has had four different dollarbie Bento mesh heads—two female, and two male—as group gifts for members of the [AK] Heads, News & Support group; the group join fee was L$150, so that works out to 38.5 Linden dollars per head, an amazing deal! So you might want to join this group, in case they decide to offer other dollarbie deals on Bento mesh heads.)

Mesh Body: eBody Classic avatar body (L$1 at the freebie store at Ajuda SL Brasil or directly from the eBody store; note that the dollarbie version of this mesh body has only “thick” alpha sections on the HUD, not the finer alpha sections on the full-price version)

Eyes: free hazel Look Into My eyes by Exodi (store is no longer in SL)

Gown: Queen of Hearts gown by Whymsical Marketplace (free hunt gift in the Alice in Wonderland Hunt)

Shoes (not seen): freebie flats in black from Garbaggio (free from the SL Marketplace for Slink feet; the eBody Classic mesh body has Slink-compatible feet)

Hair: free Pulled Back Bun (brown) from the Library / Accessories / Hair Design Options / Pulled Back Bun folder in your SL inventory

Crown: an old hunt gift from a store that is no longer in SL

Jewelry: the Secret of Jade ruby bracelet, earrings and necklace by J&W Jewelers (freebie at the Regency Ballroom; there is also a lovely free gown by Shoenique to pick up here as well):

TOTAL COST FOR THIS ENTIRE AVATAR: L$152 (L$150 group join fee for Akeruka, L$1 for the Akeruka Lulu mesh head, L$1 for the eBody Classic mesh body)

Off with her head!

Second Life Steals, Deals and Freebies: Hilly Haalan

I’ve been blogging a fair bit these past few days about where to get the best freebies in Second Life (which is pretty hilarious when you consider that I never intended to blog about SL on this blog at all!), and I realized I had forgotten to mention another really great place to get clothing and shoes for female avatars!

Hilly Haalan currently has a wonderful Mother’s Day freebie available if you join their group (which is free to join). It’s a pair of Sonnet suede pumps with a HUD allowing you to re-texture them in any of 20 different colours:

HIlly Haalan 3 16 May 2018.png

The shoes do come in versions for Maitreya, Belleza, and Slink feet (although I found that I did have to adjust them a bit using Right Click/Edit when I tried the Slink version on my Altamura mesh avatar feet). As of right now, I know of no other place on the grid that gives you a set of basic, classic women’s pumps with a 20-colour HUD, so load up all your Second Life female avatars and go pick up this Mother’s Day freebie, pronto! And tell your friends! 🙂

Not far from the vendor panel for the Sonnet pumps is a small Gifts shop for all the Hilly Haalan group gifts:

HIlly Haalan Gifts 16 May 2018_001

Inside, you will find fifty-two free outfits and shoes which you can pick up for free while wearing your Hilly Haalan group tag! In addition to those 52 gifts for the HH group, you can also pick up another ten items for free by joining the following groups (all of which are free-to-join), and then clicking on the appropriate vendor panels on the right-hand side brick wall when you enter the Gifts store:

  • SL Frees and Offers (4 gifts)
  • Maitreya Gifts, Sales and News (2 gifts)
  • Mesh Body Fiends (2 gifts)
  • Avangardista (2 gifts)

(If you want, you can join the Mesh Avatar Appearance Maniacs group for L$50 and pick up another 4 gifts while wearing that group tag.)

Here’s an example of one of the gifts you can pick up from Hilly Haalan for joining the SL Frees & Offers group, this beautiful red Audrey dress with black straps:

Hilly Haalan 16 May 2018.png

Hilly Haalan 2 16 May 2018

My avatar is wearing:

Mesh Head and Lipstick: Giselle Bento head by Altamura (no longer available for free; this was an Altamura gift from last Christmas at the eBENTO event, and you had to join the Altamura group for L$50 to get it)

Mesh Body: Jenny Bento body by Altamura (no longer available for free; this was a gift last Christmas from the Women Only Hunt)

Nails: Christmas Gold Bento glitter nails by Altamura (this was a Christmas Advent gift which is no longer available)

Hair: Beyoncé hair by enVOGUE (a L$1 gift from last year’s Hair Fair)

Mesh Eyes: Beyou blue eyes (L$1 on the SL Marketplace)

Dress: Audrey dress by Hilly Haalan (free group gift; the SL Frees & Offers group is free to join)

Shoes: Sonnet pumps by Hilly Haalan (free group gift; group is free to join; the Altamura Jenny mesh avatar body has Slink-compatible feet)

Necklace: Tillie necklace by Vanilla Bae (free hunt gift from the current Alice in Wonderland Hunt by Enchantment; you are looking for a small key with a rabbit’s head; the gift comes with a HUD with 7 metal options and 21 ribbon colour options to match literally any outfit; the hunt hint is “Take a seat”)

AO stand poses: SEmotion Newbie Girl Bento AO (L$1 on the SL Marketplace; be warned that the default walk for this AO is absolutely horrible and I had to swap it out for another walk animation taken from the Tuty’s Lucky Girl Bento AO, which is available for free at Tuty’s; note that you do not have to spend hundreds of Linden dollars on an animation override with Bento hand animations!)

TOTAL COST FOR THIS ENTIRE AVATAR: L$53 (L$50 group join fee for Altamura, and L$1 each for the hair, eyes and AO)