UPDATED: Second Life Steals and Deals — Altamura Jenny Bento Mesh Head For Only L$700 At the Expo Fair

I recently blogged about the fantastic deal that Altamura had at the recent Second Life Skin Fair, a complete Bento mesh avatar body and head package for only L$300. Well, if you missed that, there’s another Altamura deal coming up starting today!

If you’re in the market for a Bento mesh avatar head for your female Second Life avatar, and you don’t want to pay L$5,000 for a Catwa, Lelutka or LAQ head, head over to the Expo Fair, where you pick up the Jenny Bento mesh head by Altamura for only L$700! (You do have to become a member of the Altamura group to get the discount; the group join fee is L$50.)

Jenny at the Expo Fair 10 Apr 2018.png

The Expo Fair just opened today at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time/SL Time, and I don’t know how long it runs for, so hurry down! Here’s a SLURL that should take you directly to the Altamura booth at the fair. (It’s not a large fair; there’s only 18 booths in a skybox.)

Neck ProblemI did come across one serious bug with this head. I bought it and set it up to wear with the Altamura Valentina body I had bought earlier at the Skin Fair. The neck seam on the Jenny head was noticeably wider than the neck on the Valentina body (see image, right). In order to fix it, you have to click the “OTHER” button on the included Jenny head HUD, and then CLICK AROUND IN AN ATTEMPT TO FIND THE INVISIBLE BUTTON that removes this neck seam, located somewhere above the ear removal button on the bottom!

I’ve already told the Altamura customer support people just how stupid this design decision is. Here’s an actual transcript of my conversation with their rep:

Me: I don’t understand.

Customer Service Rep: In that area are hidden buttons horizontally. Click in that area and watch the neck.

Me: I can’t find the hidden button. Wait, OK, I finally got it. That is a TERRIBLE PROBLEM with the HUD.

CSR: Well, we hid them because too many people were actually messing their necks up, and less people had issues, so…

Me: That’s wrong.

CSR: Since the new HUDs on the way, it’s a moot point…LOL

Me: That’s too confusing. And you are going to get a lot of people buying this head that have the same problem.

CSR: This way I have to assist 20 people. The other way was 200.

So, buyer beware! Perhaps Altamura will issue an updated HUD with a fix for this incredibly stupid issue. Invisible buttons?!?? I am not very impressed with this answer at all. Overall, I do find the Altamura HUDs and supporting documentation to be confusing already, compared to the HUDs and documentation for other mesh avatar bodies and heads. Maybe in some cases, you do get what you pay for.

However, if you want a good deal on a beautiful, fully customizable Bento mesh head, despite some problems and frustrations with its HUDs, I can recommend the Altamura Jenny head. At less than one-fifth the cost of the upscale models, it’s still a real deal.

Here’s a picture of one of my alts, wearing the Altamura Jenny head and Altamura Valentina body:

Altamura Jenny 10 Apr 2018.png

She is wearing:

  • Head and Lipstick: Altamura Jenny Bento mesh head, just purchased from the Expo Fair (L$700)
  • Body and Nails: Altamura Valentina Bento mesh body from the recent Skin Fair (L$300; no longer available at that price)
  • Hair: Chikai hair in black by Argrace (free gift)
  • Eyes: Look Into My eyes in brown by Exodi (no longer available for sale)
  • Earrings: Casual Pearls earrings by Miriel (no longer available for sale)
  • Clothing: Temis shirt and skirt by Scandalize (free group gift)
  • Shoes (not seen): Marquesse classic pumps in black (free; from the excellent freebie store at Ajuda SL Brasil)
  • AO: Tuty’s Lucky Girl Bento AO by Tuty (free; with additional Bento stand animations added from the dollarbie SEmotion Newbie Girl AO HUD available on the Marketplace; you do NOT need to spend thousands of Lindens on a Bento AO!)

Total cost of this complete Bento mesh avatar: L$1,001.

UPDATE April 11th: I’ve been told by someone in the official Second Life user forums that the HUD for the demo version of the Jenny head does have the buttons visible to adjust the neck, so here is a comparison to show you exactly what I am complaining about. Here’s a picture of the HUD for the demo version:

Demo HUD 11 Apr 2018.png

Now compare that with the same page of the HUD for the full version:

Full HUD 11 Apr 2018.png

See what I mean about invisible buttons? Stupid, stupid, STUPID, stupid, stupid…

UPDATE April 12th: I have heard back from Altamura on the official Second Life forums, and they say that they have corrected the problem with the HUD:

Hello, Vanity Fair :)

What you show is the neck size, it is not a seam. However the HUD is fixed on the sold version and not on the demo. We named this part “Neck size” and Now you can turn off the neck .So you can widely spread this news on your blog :). Neck size  exists to connect the mesh head with the second life body. It is not necessary on bodymesh, if the creator of the body has respected the canons of sl. Even if the body mesh creator has not respected it, the body will be provided with a fitting neck, you can use that.

Here’s an image of the updated HUD that apparently is now being offered with the sold version (I can’t verify this unless I actually purchase the Jenny head again, but I’m certainly willing to take their word for it.)

Altamura HUD 12 Apr 2018.png

Advertisements

Second Life and Sansar Musical Artists: Compete in the Voices of Sansar Contest!

Wolfie Performs at Alfy's Stage 10 Mar 2018

Alfy, who has been busy bringing in musical artists to perform at his Arena Live Music Stage in Sansar, has announced a new competition called the Voices of Sansar! The contest seems to be directed towards Second Life performers, but really it’s open to anybody who wants to compete.

The grand prize, according to Alfy, is L$50,000 (although why the prize would be awarded in Linden dollars when the contest is in Sansar is bit of a mystery to me. Maybe because right now it’s easier to pay avatars in Second Life than in Sansar? That must be it. Anyways, it works out to US$200, which is a nice prize.

If you wish to enter the competition, you can sign up on Alfy’s Arena Live Music Stage FaceBook page between April 10th and 18th, by leaving your name and a link to your web page so people can listen to your music. (If you haven’t already, you will need to sign up for a Sansar account since, obviously, you will be appearing in-world to perform.)

On April 19th, Facebook users vote on who gets to enter the Voices of Sansar competition, and the top twelve performers get entered into the contest.

Over the next three weeks, the chosen artists will perform and the judges will vote.

1st week: On April 21st at 1:00 p.m. Pacific Time/Sansar Time, 12 performers will sing and 6 will be chosen to continue.

2nd week: On April 28th at 1:00 p.m., 6 performers will sing and 3 will be chosen to continue.

3rd weeK: On May 5th at 1:00 p.m., the last 3 performers will sing and a winner will be chosen!

Voices of Sansar Image 8 Apr 2018

 

Using Second Life As My Radio Station

Over the past several years I have noticed myself using Second Life for a particular, rather peculiar purpose, one that I certainly didn’t intend to use it for at first, and one that I’m sure Linden Lab didn’t forsee either. I find myself dressing up my avatar, visiting a club, turning up the sound on my speakers, and then heading for the sofa to put my feet up with my iPad to read or browse Reddit and simply listen to some music. In other words, Second Life has become my radio station!

Sometimes I’m in the mood for some classic, romantic standards, and so I throw on an elegant ballgown and some expensive-looking jewelry, and strike a pose at the side of the dancefloor at Frank’s Place Jazz Club (despite the name, they don’t play jazz that often). I never go to Frank’s to dance; I go to listen to the music. I don’t need to be sitting at my computer to do that. As long as I meet their formal dress code, I can stand there and listen as long as I want; sometimes I plant myself there all day while I am doing other things!

Vanity Fair at Frank's Jazz Club 2 4 Apr 2018_001.png

Other times, I’ll decide to throw on a daring little minidress and visit FMD to listen to a stream of music that would not be out of place in a hip, fashionable modern club scene. It’s not music I would listen to on a regular radio station at all, but sometimes I’m in the mood for something different.

And on another day, and I’ll be in jeans and a leather jacket at Big Daddy’s 80’s Club or Muddy’s Music Café, listening to the music stream there.

Do you use Second Life as a radio station too? Leave a comment to let me know where you like to listen. I’m always open to new suggestions!

Thoughts on the Land Market in Second Life and the Newer Virtual Worlds

jesse-roberts-146556-unsplash.jpg
Photo by Jesse Roberts on Unsplash

Through the Second Life Friends group on Facebook, I found out about my new favourite thing/activity in Second Life. It’s a backpack by ScriptWorks that you wear, and when you click it, it teleports you to a random spot anywhere within Second Life! (You can set it to avoid Adult-rated areas if you wish.)

You can buy a set of 5 random teleporter backpacks on the SL Marketplace, which means that you can give them to your friends and go exploring together! A group of backpack wearers can be simultaneously teleported to any random location on the grid, estates as well as mainland sims. It is great fun and a great way to see Second Life!

In spending my time exploring the SL grid with this backpack, I have learned a few things while hopping around from sim to sim:

  1. There is a lot of empty/abandoned land on the SL mainland. According to the Second Life Grid Survey, between 20.7% and 21.4% of Mainland by area is abandoned parcels, but to my eye, it looks like much more than that. No wonder Linden Lab is trying to encourage more land use by decreasing the cost of tier and doubling the amount of free land given to Premium members.
  2. There are a lot of people who are land barons, who buy land, subdivide it, and rent it out to other people. I really had had no idea that it was such a big business in SL! I have visited some attractively designed communities like Cedar Creek, Lionheart, and Orchard Heights, where I was tempted to rent a beautiful home for myself.

Which got me thinking about the concepts of land and land rental in the newer virtual worlds. It’s going to be a lot harder for people to make money as land barons in places like Sansar, where you can get up to three 4km-by-4km spaces for free (and even more land if you upgrade to one of the paid subscription levels).

However, there may still be a market for people who create well-designed spaces that other people want to rent. Drax has said that he wants to rent out the currently empty houses that line the street in his 114 Harvest experience. I’d certainly be interested in renting one of those houses!

The thing is, once you own land, you want to build something on it. This, in turn, drives the economy, as people purchase houses, trees, swimming pools, etc. I used to own land in Second Life, both on the mainland and then in the planned community of Bay City, but I sold it years ago. For many years I was homeless, like many SL avatars (although I did have access to a secret spot with build rights, where I could unpack boxes and change outfits).

Then very recently, I decided to use one of my Premium accounts to get myself a Linden Home in Second Life, and right after that I went out and bought some new furniture from many of the designers whom I have met and gotten to know from my time in Sansar, like Maxwell Graf. Loz Hyde, Froukje Hoorenbeek (a.k.a. Dutchie), and Ria Bazar!

What about newer virtual worlds other than Sansar? I seem to remember visiting a domain in High Fidelity where avatars could set up homes for themselves, but I’m not sure what the status of that project is (and I’m not even sure if I could find it again!). Much like Sansar, Sinespace actually gives you a free home space which you can decorate as you wish.

Frankly, most of the people currently exploring and inhabiting the newer social VR spaces/virtual worlds are creators rather than consumers, who are going to build from scratch rather than select ready-made items from a marketplace to decorate their living space. This means that most people are going to use their own (free) land rather than rent it from a landlord. It might stay that way for quite some time, which could be bad news for wannabe land barons in the newer virtual worlds. And it could be even worse news for people who bought expensive virtual land in places like Decentraland, hoping to be able to make some money by renting it out.