Second Life Steals, Deals, and Freebies: Romeo and Juliet Full-Body Mesh Avatars as Valentine’s Day Gifts at the eBENTO Event!

Altamura has really outdone herself this time, with not one but two free, fully-featured, full-body mesh avatars, one for men and one for women, in celebration of Valentine’s Day!

Here is what the vendors look like at the Altamura booth at the eBENTO event:

To get the Juliet body, you must first join the Altamura Design/Mesh Avatars group (there’s a L$50 join fee) and pay the vendor L$1 (your dollar will be automatically refunded). To get the Romeo body, join the eBENTO Event Update Group for free and pay the vendor L$1 (your dollar will again be refunded).

Here is what the Juliet avatar looks like:

Unlike previous Altamura free mesh bodies, she comes in no less than eight different skin tones and a complete set of nail types and colours! Another nice feature is that you can remove the included head and replace it with any other Bento mesh head. And, if you get the Altamura Omega system kit, you can even use Omega skin appliers with this body!

Here’s another look at the darkest skin tone on the same Juliet avatar, wearing one of the free outfits and hair from the new starter avatars just released by Second Life:

Looking good!

And this is what the Romeo male avatar looks like, with all the default shapes and settings, all tattoos removed, and at the lightest of the four included skin tones:

Here’s a full-body look at Romeo in the darkest skin tone (note that you can have him clean-shaven if you wish; you can remove the default beard using the cheeks button on the makeup tab on the included HUD):

If you wish, you can also remove the head on this body and replace it with any other Bento mesh head. I did notice that if you turn the head off then back on, you will have to re-remove the default tattoos and makeup from the head again, but I consider this a minor bug.

These are outstanding, well-designed, and fully-featured freebies which are also Omega-compatible. With a complete set of alpha selections in the included HUD, you can basically wear just about anything with these bodies and they will look well. Drop everything and get down here today! This deal is only until midnight of Valentine’s Day, Second Life Time/Pacific Time.

Here’s the link to the Altamura booth at the eBENTO event. Please note that the sim is absolutely packed today, so you might have to use something like the Teleport Hammer to get in. Keep trying!

UPDATE: There has been such a level of crowding, chaos, and lag at the eBENTO event, that Altamura has added multiple new Romeo and Juliet vendors to the eBENTO event, and they have also moved the Romeo and Juliet gift vendors into their main store location (here’s the SLURL). You will still need to join the eBento Event Update Group for Romeo and the Altamura Design/Mesh Avatars group for Juliet, as before. Good luck!

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A Fresh Look at Decentraland: Larger Parcels and a Drag-and-Drop Scene Editor Are Coming

On this blog, I have often been highly critical (even downright sarcastic) about the blockchain-based virtual world Decentraland. I still think that their real estate is vastly overpriced, but I do have to say, of all the blockchain-based virtual world products out there, Decentraland seems to be the closest to actual fruition—and, on top of that, they’re doing some interesting things!

First, they’ve completely redesigned their website and it looks really good! They definitely are aiming for a certain blocky, cartoony aesthetic, not hyper-realistic, but certainly still attractive to many people:

Also, Decentraland is actively surveying its userbase on a number of issues through their community polling tool Agora, including increasing the size of LAND parcels from 10 m by 10 m (100 square metres) to 16 m by 16 m (256 square metres). It looks like this change will be approved by an overwhelming margin. It’s refreshing to see a virtual world which is so willing to consider making adjustments to benefit its users (especially before the actual product launch).

Finally, Decentraland has announced that a drag-and-drop scene building tool will be available this spring. In order to promote it, they are holding a contest:

In the last Project Update, we shared that we’re working on the new and easy-to-use Builder. Our vision for Builder is to provide a way for all users, regardless of their technical backgrounds, to create immersive content to host on their LAND. In anticipation of the new scene builder (and to celebrate its upcoming launch), we are excited to introduce Decentraland’s Creator Contest! Our goal is to encourage and reward creative scenes put together by community members using the scene builder.

After the Builder is launched, the Creator Contest will officially begin – giving you two weeks to put your imagination to use in putting together your most immersive and beautiful (or bizarre) scenes.

Every single scene that is submitted through the Creator Contest will be rewarded with 100 MANA, even if it isn’t selected by the judge panel as one of the finalists. The most creative scenes will be hand-picked by a panel of five expert judges. A total of 50 scenes will be deployed, and featured within Genesis City. From those 50 scenes, five will be selected as finalists and their creators will receive some premium LAND and a purse of MANA. The remaining 45 featured parcels will also be rewarded with LAND and additional MANA!

At the current exchange rates, 100 MANA works out to about US$3.50, so while it’s not a lot of money, many people may enter this contest just to get a starter purse of in-game currency. It’s great marketing!

As time goes on, and I see just how dedicated the Decentraland team is to their vision of a decentralized, blockchain-based virtual world, my initial cynicism is starting to wane. Not completely, mind you. But it is fascinating to watch as the project evolves over time. Hopefully, sometime this year, I will get an opportunity to walk around in-world!

Avatar Customization to Be the Theme of a Special Valentine’s Day Sansar Product Meetup This Thursday

This Thursday, which also happens to be Valentine’s Day, there will be a special Product Meetup focusing on avatar customization. Lacie Sansar (who appears to be the acting community manager for Sansar while Linden Lab is searching to fill the position after Eliot left) has posted the following message to the announcements channel on the official Sansar Discord:

I’m *extremely* excited to announce our *Special Edition* of our Product Meetup this upcoming Thursday.

We will focus on discussing the highly requested upcoming features for even **more** Avatar Customization & we want to hear your feedback.

Without further ado…*lets get customizable* this **Thursday, February 14th** at **11AM PST**

See you there, Sansarians. 😉

https://events.sansar.com/events/Lacie-Sansar/product-meetup—special-edition—lets-get-customizable/bf6f3ac0

We’re already got endless customization of such things as hair, clothing, and accessories, but I am still really happy to see this announcement because I and others have been badgering Linden Lab for months now to address several issues related to customization for the default human avatars:

  • more face sliders and the addition of body sliders (height, weight, etc.)
  • customized skins which can be bought and sold on the Sansar Store

So if, like me, you are keenly interested in these sorts of topics, we get an opportunity to tell Linden Lab what we want to see!

Occupy White Walls: A Look at a Few More of the Best Galleries

As promised, here’s a few more of the best galleries I have visited in Occupy White Walls. This is actually a great way to pick up ideas for use in the gallery I am currently building!

birbswarm

This user has created an imposing tower at one end of the gallery, rising up against the night sky:

At the very top of the tower is a glass-walled gallery filled with landscapes, open to the starry night:

lachdanan

This outstanding gallery features a bold, futuristic design and numerous themed displays:

miikastigson

raoulr

cscousins

As you can see, this gallery is more about the architecture than the art!

jbpaschal

This gallery is truly a joy to explore!

As I mentioned before, Occupy White Walls is free to use. I would encourage you to download the client software from Steam and do a little exploring of your own! There’s so much to appreciate here, an embarrassment of riches, and something to delight just about anybody.

The software has just been updated, and a new feature allows for the collaborative building of galleries with other users: