This panoramic scene is a screenshot from Draxtor Despres’s video of our Atlas Hopping adventure yesterday afternoon (which I highly recommend you watch if you missed Drax’s live stream of the event). I am standing on a hilltop, looking out over the wide expanse of countryside. This experience is by French artist Silas Merlin, and it is called Felsenmeer (German for “sea of rocks”). Silas has a large number of his artistic works on display in this experience, and it is so wonderful to be able to walk around and look at his art in this beautiful environment. Silas also has a number of his artworks and creations listed for sale in the Sansar Store, that you can purchase and install in your own experiences.
What I’m focusing in on now is, I need performance, I need social, I need community, I need commerce. So all these things are high, high up on my roadmap.
— Bjorn Laurin, Linden Lab’s Vice-President of Product
I pulled out the quote above from a must-read blog post by Inara Pey summarizing in-world discussions Linden Lab staff had with Second Life users prior to the launch of the open creator beta of Sansar. I must have missed these sessions (were they part of the recent 14th-anniversary SL celebrations?), so I am really glad that Inara went to all the trouble of writing and organizing this post (she even went to the trouble of transcribing audio clips!). Anybody who still has questions about where Linden Lab is going with Sansar absolutely has to go and read Inara’s post. Go! Read it now! I’ll still be here when you get back 🙂
One of the common misconceptions about Sansar is that is designed only for users in virtual reality headsets such as Oculus Rift or HTC Vive. Nothing could be further from the truth. Linden Lab has drawn up a very complete list of keyboard shortcuts for users in desktop (non-VR) mode. I’m going to mention just a few of them here, and I hope that they will be helpful to those users who may be feeling frustrated in navigating Sansar on the computer desktop.
Moving your avatar around on the desktop (non-VR):
- Arrow keys: Move your avatar forward, backward, left, and right.
- WASD: Move your avatar forward, backward, left, and right.
- F3: Toggle between first person and third person view (Note: you might have to press your F Lock key, usually located next to your F12 key on your keyboard, before you can use F3. It took me literally weeks to figure this out!)
- Hold the CTRL button: Select a teleport destination. A blue circle will appear.
- Click the left mouse button while holding CTRL: Teleports your avatar to the selected location.
- Scroll the middle mouse button while holding CTRL (prior to teleporting): Choose the direction your avatar faces upon completing the teleport.
Moving your camera (viewpoint) around on the desktop (non-VR):
- Hold the right mouse button + drag: Rotate the camera to look around the environment.
- F4: Enter free camera mode when not using a VR headset (Note: you might have to press your F Lock key, usually located next to your F12 key on your keyboard, before you can use F4. Like I said, it took me weeks to figure this out!)
- Arrow keys: Move camera forward, backward, left, and right (free-camera mode).
- WASD: Move camera forward, backward, left, and right (free-camera mode).
- E, C: Move camera up and down (very handy!)
- + (Plus Sign) on the NUMERIC keypad: Increase the camera movement speed.
- – (Minus Sign) on the NUMERIC keypad: Decrease the camera movement speed.
- F3: Exit free camera mode.
And an Extra Tip:
- Hold down the right mouse button to smooth out the camera motion while walking using the arrow keys or WASD (this tip came courtesy of Sansar user Sin). If you are holding down the right mouse button while you use the up arrow key (or the W key) to move forward, you can then use the mouse to turn your avatar much more gently than the default snap 45-degree turns.
Strawberry Singh (who herself is a desktop, non-VR user of Sansar) has made a very useful short video tutorial on the available desktop avatar and camera controls. The video I included below is just one part of an extremely comprehensive introduction to Sansar which I can heartily recommend to newbies. This six-minute video is probably the most painless introduction to Sansar desktop commands you can find anywhere:
I haven’t had so much fun in the metaverse in ages!! For the past hour and a half, Second Life celebrities Draxtor Despres and Strawberry Singh have led a merry band of followers from experience to experience within Sansar. If memory serves me correctly, we started our journey at Drax’s own experience at 114 Harvest, then we went to Felsenmeer to see Silas Merlin’s wonderful artworks and admire the view from the tower on the hill. From there, we went on to Neptune’s Revenge where its creator Maxwell Graf met us, and then finally we all went over to City Park, an urban environment by Lex4art. Whew!
Both Strawberry Singh and Draxtor Despres live-streamed this afternoon’s entire event (here’s Drax’s stream and here’s Strawberry’s stream). Watching the friendly rivalry between these two seasoned veterans of the metaverse was hilarious! Thank you so much for inviting me along, Drax! I had a wonderful time! I wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest if this becomes a regular live-streamed event. The Drax and Strawberry and Richardus and Ryan Show. Has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?? I think Drax may even copyright the term “Atlas Hopping” LOL!
(The picture in this post was a screengrab from Strawberry Singh’s live stream on YouTube. We were at the Felsenmeer experience, admiring one of Silas Merlin’s artistic creations up close.)