And wouldn’t you know it, just as soon as I decide to take a vacation from the blog, I find yet another new, as-yet-unreleased virtual world! Damn it, people, I am supposed to be taking a vacation! 😉
It’s called AviLife (not to be confused with Avakin Life, which is primarily a mobile virtual world app aimed at the tween/teen market), and it appears to be desktop only (no VR). Here’s a preview video:
All I can find for it now are some online user forums. The FAQ (posted July 22nd) says:
What studio is developing this game?
FlammableStudios (British indie developers)
What engine will it support?
Unreal Engine 4
What platforms will it support? PC. MAC. Steam. X-Box. PS4. PS5?
PC, PS4, Xbox
Will this game be free to play or subscription based?
Free to play
What is the intended ESRB rating for this game?
18 In the EU, M in the US
What are the intended core features for this game?
Advanced avatar customization (Including layered clothing, so you can wear a jacket over a shirt for example)
Advanced personal space customization (Item placement, wall papers, flooring, lights colors, etc)
Cross-platform (Certain consoles may have to be excluded from cross-platform play)
Many social features (Dancing, Actions, Poses, etc)
YouTube & Soundcloud integration (Media players)
Mini-games (There’s going to be a high focus on providing fun mini-games once the core of the game is finished)
Locomotion Items (Jetpacks, skateboards, wings, etc)
Physics Items (Example: a ball that you can freely kick around, etc)
Modern arcade games
A theme park (A full theme park, this won’t be in for a while though)
Who is funding development, content and server costs?
We’re currently self funded, we will have a kicksrtarter/indiegogogo once we have the proof of concept demo ready.
There are currently no plans for VR support or mobile device support. They plan on launching a kickstarter where investors will get exclusive early access and unique items.
From watching the video, it seems a lot like Second Life. Which leads me to ask: why do we need another Second Life? What will AviLife offer that is different and unique from SL? This appears to be primarily a free-to-play console-based game. The FAQ states:
What makes this game any different from what’s already presently available; Nebula Realms, Atom universe, Four King’s Casino And Slots? If I’m loyal to Atom Universe for example, what would make me support this game?
Without commenting on any other world, we believe AviLife will be the most advanced console world. I was also [a PlayStation] Home user from the original closed beta, I understand what works, what people want, and what will make AviLife the best place to play.
I also notice this strange, rather stern “anti-marketing reminder“, which appears to discourage people from comparing AviLife with other virtual worlds:
We have informed the community numerous times that within any aspect of our community, that be on PS4, on here, or even in discord, or in-game you’re free to talk about other worlds in the context of comparing them to AviLife, as this is a great way to talk about how worlds can be improved while also discussing the impact, AviLife has, or can give to others. However when you discuss virtual worlds that have nothing to do with AviLife, and do not include AviLife in this discussions you do nothing for the AviLife community. Not to mention that the logo’s belonging to these virtual worlds are usually on or around the images being posted, and that means we are marketing content that is not ours to market.
I bring this concern up because of a misunderstanding the community seems to have on what we consider to be allowed, or disallowed. This is another reminder on the topic. If you have any questions feel free to contact me directly, or reply to this post. Keep your comments non-biased, and fair. Please remember that we want a just and fair community, but we also have rules that every member must follow, there are no exceptions.
Well, good luck with clamping down on that, hun. You all already know how I feel about virtual worlds that try to throttle any discussion of competitors.
I also find it frustrating that I cannot find very much information at all about AviLife, other than a few videos and this forum. I only learned about the existence of this virtual world in a discussion thread over on the Second Life Friends group on Facebook, where people were talking about where they would go if SL suddenly shut down. I guess we’ll all find out more when they launch their kickstarter!
UPDATE Nov. 12th: TheRealHuggablePanda has posted a 12-minute YouTube video describing some of the screenshots, images, and other information currently available about AviLife:
It seems clear from this fan-made video that AviLife is targeting the former PlayStation Home crowd, a console-based virtual world which closed in 2015.
UPDATE Dec. 31st: I now have news of a Discord server for AviLife, which you can join if you are interested in this project. Latest word is they will launch in 2019.