RPGDot Network    

Space Rangers 2
Display full image
Pic of the moment
pics from the gallery

Site Navigation


   Games Database
   Top 100
   Release List
   Support Files



   Staff Members
   Privacy Statement

RPGDot Game Rating Machine
Gwyneth Llewelyn has rated the following games:

Second Life: 10/10 points

Unfortunately I'm too biased to comment impartially on the review, since I'm a Second Life resident - one of those with "several projects I'm working on" :) - but I think that the review is quite representative on what Second Life is really about: a stable economy on a stable society. Another country, another place to go, where the rules are oh-so-similar to "the real world" but subtly different. The reviewer justly said "it's not a game, I shouldn't review it". That's something shared about 90% of the Second Life residents. It's simply not "a game" but a "place". It's quite true about the difficulties with the interface, the low frame rate, the quirkiness of the rendering. Remember, on Second Life, *everything* is dynamic, and you can do collaborative creation: meaning that from one frame to the next, your pal sitting next to you may have added a few completely new object to the game. This means the object has to be streamed to you (and everybody else looking in the same direction). Knowing that on average you can get 10 frames per second with a fully dynamic platform (and in some cases, even 15-22 fps) is a tribute to good engineering and software design - but still it feels much "clunkier" than other platforms where all content is static and downloaded to your computer first. Since a review is hard to capture about medium to long-term experiences (you can only get first impressions), I would like to add two additional advantages of Second Life: technical support and a large discussion base on the forums. Linden Lab, the makers of the Second Life platform, has very few designers - they just did a small percentage of overall content, a few spots here and there, and perhaps 0.01% of all textures in-world (there are probably individual players that have design many more objects and uploaded more textures than the whole lot of Linden Lab's designers put together). What they concentrate on is technical support. Perhaps half (certainly a third!) of the staff is hired just for helping out people inworld. But the game is becoming more and more international - 30% of the residents don't live in the US - it's hard for a small company to keep up with 24h/7 technical support, even if several employees often log in for fun (but also to help out residents) during the night or on the weekends. So they introduced the concept of Live Help. These are normal residents, without any super-powers :) and working absolutely for free (not even for "game money") who volunteer their time to be "always online" to help. There are always one or two (at the very least) at all hours to help residents out - if it doesn't envolve "super-powers" like rebooting servers or so. Beyond Live Help, there are Mentors - 200 or so resident volunteers that also roam the world, especially the welcome area and the public sandboxes (where you can build what you wish for free), just to help out new players and give some tips. Finally, even "non-organized" residents (ie. not part of any of those groups) very often help people out spontaneously, by teaching classes, doing private tutoring, or just answering to questions. Currently, about 2-3% of the population of SL is on some sort of "organized help group". As you can imagine, this gives you the highest possible technical support :) ... even if you NEVER use it, it's nice to know that it's there! Last but not least, the forums. Compared to some other games I've seen, the Second Life forums are HUGE, and also, unlike other games, they are really 99% about SL and not to discuss non-SL related questions. Games with 10 times as much players have perhaps one third of the messages! This means that a lot is going on the forums, and while there is INEVITABLY lots of noise (the groups are partially moderated), you can get lots and lots of very interesting information there as well. Some people never read the forums, and some spend more time discussing Second Life's economy, society, politics, architecture or technical aspects then logging in :) Overall, I would say that Second Life does NOT appeal to everybody. To take full advantage of your USD $9.95 lifetime membership, you'll really have to enjoy a lot to create projects from scratch (no matter what kind of project... a "project" can be just socializing, ie. chatting around and being a nice person :) ). This takes time and patience. Residents build up a reputation - they get known in the forums, they get recognized in Second Life - by spending time doing creative stuff. Yes. That takes time. That takes patience to learn and develop your own skills (and not your avatar's skills, since it has none...). So, Second Life is not for everybody - so don't dispair if you don't get hooked as fast as most of us :) (I agree that all it takes is a week, logging in every day for 2 hours or so)
All original content of this site is copyrighted by RPGWatch. Copying or reproducing of any part of this site is strictly prohibited. Taking anything from this site without authorisation will be considered stealing and we'll be forced to visit you and jump on your legs until you give it back.