Please note that I am taking the rest of the summer off as a self-imposed vacation from the blog so I can focus on my other work, except for sponsored blogposts, and the occasional exception such as this blogpost. See you in September!
There’s a new full-body (i.e. head and body), Bento, Bakes on Mesh compatible mesh avatar for women, an update to the original open-source Ruth mesh body called G&D Ruth 3.5. You can pick one up for free from the SL Marketplace. I decided to take this body out for a test drive, just to see how well it stacks up against other free and inexpensive mesh heads and bodies for female avatars I have blogged about.
Please keep in mind that the head and the body are separate items, so if you wish, you can mix and match them with other Bakes on Mesh heads and bodies.
The creator notes in the Marketplace listing:
The head has been rebuilt from scratch to a more attractive standard and no longer has visible jagged edges. There is more Bento functionally and a full range of shape support. There is a fitmesh neck blender that is also BOM and the old Ruth choker collar, to provide different levels of coverage.
There is a robust nail system that is as easy as wearing a system tattoo. Simply right click and ADD to yourself in your inventory. There is also a pure white modifable tinting option.
Skins are NOT mined freebies from other websites, they have been made specially for the body and head. There are a variety of colours including natural and supernatural tones. There is also all three tints of our Color Wonder ultra customizable skins.
Finally, a compact, low lag mesh body accessible for all SL viewers with no catches and no sacrifices. Look beautiful for the lowest possible price…free!
I spent a fair bit of time tinkering with the head and body sliders on this one, because I was dissatisfied with the default settings, particularly on the head, which I found to be rather long and thinner-faced by default compared to other Bento heads I have used before. (If you have found other Bento mesh heads to be too round, perhaps the head in this package might just be perfect for you!) The body responds well to the sliders.
I also didn’t like the system skins that this body came with (a selection of both regular and fantasy skins), so I used the Elvira skin in the maple skin tone from 7 Deadly S[k]ins, a former Advent calendar gift from last December. Here is what the body looks like, with the alpha sections HUD, wearing a swimsuit I picked up as a group gift from DM:
At first, the alpha sections HUD didn’t work, but a quick logout and relog into SL fixed that problem quickly.
There is a slight, barely noticeable seam at the neck, which the included Bakes on Mesh neck fix addresses fairly well. Here’s a close-up of the head (the Kristen hair was the gift from Ade at the SL17B Shop and Hop, and the eyes are from the Leonard starter avatar already in your SL inventory). As I note later on, you might have better luck using an alpha to remove the system eyes and replace them with mesh eyes on this particular head (here’s a recent blogpost with some good links to free mesh eyes).
The ears are a separate and adjustable attachment, which of course means you can replace them easily. The feet are also a separate attachment, and come in two types: flat and high. The hands come in two versions, too, one with short nails, and one with long nails, which include several tattoo layers to tint them various colours (plus one modifiable tattoo layer which you can tint any shade you wish):
I found in my testing that most clothing and footwear for Maitreya Lara fits this body fairly well. Here my avatar is wearing the Sonnet pumps from Hilly Haalan (unrigged and easily adjustable), along with the black Vibsy minidress by PULSE, a recent gift from the Second Life 17th Birthday Shop and Hop event:
The only problem I encountered with the G&D Ruth 3.5 body is that I could not get the alphas that come bundled with clothing to work with it. However, there are a fairly good selection of alpha sections on the included HUD (after I got it working properly), so that should not be too serious a problem.
UPDATE Aug. 8th, 2020: I have been informed that the G&D Ruth 3.5 body has been updated by its creator, and that the alpha layers that come with clothing will now work properly. Here’s the link to the Marketplace listing. Thanks for the heads up, Dagger Faulkwing!
All in all, this is a pretty nice body at a price that can’t be beat—free! I would recommend that you give this one a spin, testing it out with various system/Bakes on Mesh skins, to see how well you like it.
I’m not the only SL blogger who has noticed this new, free mesh body. Midnyte Childs, of the blog Silent Raindrops, has started an Avatar on a Budget Challenge, and her second post in that category featured this body, too! Here’s her blogpost. She noted something I didn’t mention up top, that there is a barely detectable seam where the hands and feet (which are separate attachments) connect to this mesh body. And I learned from her that G&D stands for Glitter and Doom!
I will be adding the G&D Ruth 3.5 mesh body to my constantly-updated list of free and inexpensive mesh heads and bodies for female avatars.
Happy freebie shopping!