UPDATED! Sensorium Galaxy Update: The Now and the Not Yet

I have been monitoring the progress of the ambitious social VR platform Sensorium Galaxy ever since I first wrote about it on my blog in October of 2020. There have been a couple of very slickly-produced videos recently released by the company, teasing a forthcoming performance by superstar deejay David Guetta on the platform:

In a second video, David is shown being scanned in high resolution in order to create his avatar:

A recent tweet makes it sound like David Guetta’s performance in Sensorium Galaxy is imminent:

David Guetta – The #1 DJ in the World – is the next of ’The Chosen Ones’ to set off for Sensorium Galaxy’s PRISM World – the epicenter of entertainment in the digital metaverse. Don’t miss his upcoming epic shows. Register now to get early access.

Unfortunately, when you do register, all you are presented with is a downloadable technical demo, which requires a high-end gaming PC with either an Oculus Rift or HTC Vive tethered VR headset (alas, no Valve Index support yet):

The Sensorium Galaxy tech demo has some fairly steep hardware requirements

This is NOT a platform for the Oculus Quest crowd! While the social VR platform has not yet launched, the company is already selling full-body avatars in its online store for you to wear while attending future shows:

The company is also demoing its AI bots, including releasing a couple of “interview” videos, where they respond to a reporter’s questions:

I must confess that these chat bots, while certainly able to string together English sentences in response to questions, leave me a bit cold. Why you would want to engage in chitchat with an AI-enabled NPC, other than for novelty’s sake, to test it out for a few minutes? I’m not 100% convinced that a social VR platform really needs a feature like this, especially one where the obvious focus is on music performances.

With its provision of a ready-to-accept-your-cryptocurrency store before the actual product launch, its high-resolution scanning of celebrities, and its audacious, selling-the-sizzle-instead-of-the-steak promotion, Sensorium Galaxy reminds me of nothing so much as the ill-fated MATERIA ONE (formerly called Staramba Spaces; you can follow that sad saga here). MATERIA ONE, while embracing celebrity endorsers such as Paris Hilton and Hulk Hogan, foundered for any number of reasons: misplaced priorities, overweening ambition, and a limited target audience given its requirement for high-end PCVR.

Frankly, I’m not quite sure what to make of Sensorium Galaxy so far. I do know that, with my current hardware setup, that I cannot participate in it. The company is definitely trying to generate some serious buzz for the product, and I wish them every success in what is becoming a rather competitive marketplace for virtual events.

But as far as I can tell, and based on what I have seen and read so far, there’s a bit of a gap between the now and the not yet. I will continue to monitor Sensorium Galaxy as its develops!

UPDATE August 11th, 2021: I came across this April 2nd, 2021 press release which says:

Sensorium Corporation today announced the closed beta launch of Sensorium Galaxy — a social metaverse uniting people through high-quality virtual experiences. Selected users have gained access to the platform to explore worlds PRISM and MOTION.

The main goal of this closed beta test is to collect valuable insights to enhance the experiences at Sensorium Galaxy ahead of its public launch in Q2 2021.

“Sensorium Galaxy is revolutionizing how the arts are created, distributed, and enjoyed. From music festivals to dance shows, we’re creating the world’s first social metaverse where everyone can get together, experience high-quality virtual content, and find new opportunities for self-expression,” says Vladimir Kedrinsky, CEO at Sensorium Corporation.

“The SG beta test helps us streamline the in-platform user mechanics, and get actionable insights before the metaverse goes public in the upcoming months. Participants of this invite-only beta test are able to experience some of the sophisticated user-level mechanics that Sensorium Galaxy has to offer,” explains Ivan Nikitin, Head of Product at Sensorium Corporation.

So it sounds as though a lot of work is going on behind the scenes.

Second Life Steals, Deals and Freebies: The Men Only Hunt

While womenswear freebies are plentiful in Second Life, it can often be harder to find high-quality men’s freebies in SL, so I wanted to cover a major hunt that is taking place from now until August 30th, 2021, featuring free hunt prizes from dozens of menswear stores across the grid!

The hunt is called the Men Only Hunt, and you can pick up a free HUD at this SLURL (you’ll have to join the Men Only Hunt – MOH group, which is free to join). The HUD contains all the store locations plus hunt hints, simply attach it and you’re all set to go! You are looking for a yellow-and-black bird in each store; when you find it, click on it, and the prize is yours for free!

For more information, you can check out the hunt website, as well as a Flickr gallery of some (but not all) of the hunt prizes. More pictures of the Men Only Hunt prizes can be found here, from the Second Life – FREE group (this is a little-known-about Russian-language group on Vkontakte, the Russian version of Facebook, which often lists items I don’t see on other freebie blogs; use the Russian-to-English translator in your Chrome browser).

Today, I wanted to show a few hunt prizes which caught my eye. Most prizes come in what I like to call the “big three” of men’s sizes: Belleza Jake, Signature Gianni, and the Meshbody Legacy male mesh bodies.

First up we have two of the three prizes from DUK, the Jack shorts in blue and the Dheego shorts/swimtrunks in green:

Next up is a pairing of two different Men Only Hunt prizes, the black bomber jacket by DUK (sizes: Belleza Jake, Signature Gianni and Geralt, Legacy, Heracles, and Slink) and the grey jeans from CHEERNO (which come in sizes to fit Gianni, Jake, Legacy, and Enzo bodies).

From EVOL comes this wonderful Torei hoodie, which comes with a HUD with a mind-boggling array of options (you can even tint the drawstrings!). If you get nothing else from the Men Only Hunt, please pick up this generous gift!

The hunt prize from Nero N7 is this black top and matching shorts, with a white stripe (sizes: Signature Geralt and Gianni, Belleza Jake, Legacy, and Slink):

The final hunt prize I wanted to share with you today is this shiny crown from Birth, which comes in both static and spinning versions! Be king for a day 😉

If you are tearing your hair out trying to find one of those yellow hunt birds in one of the stores participating in the Men Only Hunt, here’s a pro hunting tip…in the Firestorm viewer, if you press Ctrl-Shift-R, it will turn on wireframe mode (which is essentially X-ray vision). The yellow birds pop out and are much easier to find! Press Ctrl-Shift-R again to toggle it back off. (If this feels like cheating to you, then don’t use this tip.)