Friday, February 23, 2007

Stick to your First Life

Most of you will have heard about Second Life. The online free-to-all, build-everything-you-want and live-happily-ever-after world set up by LindenLabs. At the moment the whole world seems to be obsessed with it. Take for instance the things we have seen in the Netherlands: a funeral company based a 'virtual' store where, among others, you can design your own coffin, political figures have their own avatars, companies have organized events and concerts inside Second Life. At the moment there is the biggest thing yet: the Dutch government wants to ban the child porn which is happening in Second Life. A bunch of weirdos are making avatars who look like children and let them have sex with other players.

But why? I played it once during my time at MediaMatic. You all know that I am some kind of a geek so I can familiarlize myself pretty fast with things like this, but not Second Life. First and foremost: it looks hideous! The aesthetic appeal of Second Life is nil. Child porn? Well, you need a pretty darn good imagination to be turned on by what you see in Second Life. Second: the controls, which don't respond and are not intuitive whatsoever. Next: the loading times and horizon. If you play a Massive Multiplayer Online game, the world stretches endlessly before you. In games as World of Warcraft or GuildWars, you can actually SEE this world, in Second Life everything is continuously building itself up painfully slow, with ugly textures, cheap JPEG pictures and uninteresting architecture and if something is interesting it will be so heavy on your system that it will take so long to load that you won't even bother.

And finally: it is just no fun! And you want to know why? Read this [link from BoingBoing]

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