Luke’s Second Life

Posted: April 10, 2008 in Interactive Project
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From the moment I decided where my project path lay, Luke has continually poked fun at my SecondLife. So just imagine my surprise when he asked if I could help him to do some work for his project in SecondLife.

Luke and I will be doing some filming in SecondLife in regards to his Disc World project. I was supposed to be giving him character designs but once I had gone through the process with him, we came to realise that this could be a whole 12 week project by itself. This could then have jeopardised Luke’s chances of getting his artefact finished in time for the end of the module. So after seeing the type of graphic I was able to get in SecondLife and the variety of avatar and costume available, Luke liked the idea of using my filming technique to get the desired results.

So my time has been spent location hunting for cities, forests and old towns. Not the best descriptions I’ve ever had to work with, but coupled with my limited forays into Terry Pratchett’s novels, I went ahead and found some nice locations. The images I took as screen shots, I saved to my pc and then sent them Via IM to Luke to see how I was getting on as he couldn’t get onto SecondLife using the University network, the game just keeps crashing and so it was quicker to just go by myself than wait around in world for another person who just could not stay online. This worked out quite well for the preliminary investigation and meant I had a better idea of what Luke had in mind.

Some of the cities I found may be a little modern and futuristic for our purposes here but I wanted to give Luke a good idea of what could be available.

I have also found myself shopping for costumes, all be it virtually. I am sure there must be a job doing this somewhere out there in the virtual world. I had a character list which included a witch, wizard, vampire, seamstress, assassin, creatures and some kind of barbarian.

This was actually much more fun when Luke got onto SecondLife at the same time. Most of my SL friends don’t have that much interest in my shopping/reconnaissance trips for my sets and costumes so it was nice to share that part of this project with a fellow student. The thing that made it a little too nerdy for my liking was the fact that Luke was having a problem getting onto SL on the University Network and so he came to my house to do it. This is just pushing a friendship too far. Although I am sure Luke thought the same thing as we moved our avatars around in world, changed their appearance and took snapshots, whilst chatting across the room about what we were doing in between laughing.

We spent some time looking at various avatar shapes in their various forms which resulted in Luke dressing his avatar as a huge fiery demon and a long discussion about the various Disc World characters like the assassins, seamstresses and barbarians.

I equipped my own avatar with a ninja outfit, which we liked for an assassins role and I shall be looking out for a nice evening dress for the seamstress character. As I am more familiar with SecondLife I hopped around in world and sent landmarks to Luke if I found any shops of interest whilst he did his shopping. I also looked for some Sims with landscapes which might be useful to use for the filming for Luke’s project.

We have saved screen shots of various stages throughout the days that we did this. Even after all the time I had spent in world I had forgotten to factor in time for Luke to get assimilated into the game, which thankfully, as a sometime gamer, didn’t take him long and shopping took time as he had very definite ideas about what he didn’t want and I had my own ideas of how things should look. But working with someone on a project like this made getting the props and costumes and finding locations a better experience especially when the ‘look’ of the end product is based on someone else’s vision. It felt more like a team effort after my initial forays into this game world, where I knew no one but Adam who is generally really busy on there and I don’t like to disturb him too much.

So now we just need to get together and get the filming done.


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