Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Cheeky Cow Golf Course

I went off to see an sim I heard about, but instead found an interesting place next door. It is a wonderful Golf game sim called The Cheeky Cow. Marilyn Philbin and Taylor Revnik are the owners who seem to keep everything going. There are free golf lessons too.

I have never played golf in real-life. In SL, I have played mini golf on the Galaxy so I decided to check this place out and try it without lessons. What fun! I got lost after the first hole, and took a wrong turn. I spent a lot of shots falling down hill, into water, sand and then discovered I was on the wrong approach to the wrong hole! Good thing I was just practicing. I was not using the score hud which tracks everything you do and keeps score.

I watched some other people playing and realized, well, maybe I was not that bad. I invited Qwark to join me and Bejiita came along to try it . We had a riot and some cheating went on I am sorry to say, but we made our way around the first nine. I will definitely be going back to practice some more before I play with anyone again.

It is possible to rent clubs but I went the whole way and bought the clubs with the hud. At the entrance there is a store where you can buy all the clothing and accessories you want. And the free scoring Hud is on the wall in the store so look for it. There are golf tournaments often I see and the winners have amazing scores. You are invited to TP to a Haunted course if you like. Scary!!

It is a new adventure for me in SL and I will be playing for a while . There is also a “walkabout” and they call it, and it is a great place for a horseback ride. Look for some other fun things to do there too. My friend Alarice, who is a real-life golfer, and I will play soon. I have not even seen the second 9 yet but there is a tavern next to 18 which I popped into for obvious reasons.

Begin your adventure here: Kitykana (131, 234, 26)

Gemma Cleanslate

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Changes at the New Bastogne WW2 RP

This year, there have been some changes going on at the New Bastogne WW2 Combat Roleplay area.

For one, the layout of the region has been changed, as well as the number of sims increased. Last year, there had been three sims in a reverse north/south arrangement, with the German teams in New Bastogne, the Allies in the bottom edge of the southern sim, and the land in-between as open territory. This simulated the situation with the Allies still in England, making raids into France.

Early this year, the arrangement of the lands was changed with the south sim moved west of Bastogne and renamed “Allied sim,” later changed to Perrone Airport. The German teams moved their bases to a sim east of Bastogne named Schloss Burg Eltz, with the airport to the south. North of Perrone Airport is Saint Quentin. North of New Bastogne and east of Saint Quentin is Huertgenwald, which is still being worked on.

To the south of New Bastogne is the New Fallout sim, which seems to be made into an Eastern European region. Then there’s Tataria to the southeast, which is new. For now, the action remains in New Bastogne, with the two teams staying out of each other’s “home” sim. Across the sims, some railroad track has been laid out, with a trolley occasionally moving along.

Saint Quentin has a club, the Saint Quentin Ballroom, which has two dance parties a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7:30 PM SL time. The club plays 1940’s “big band” music the WW2 RP is known for, on occasion mixed in with other music from earlier times. The club is neutral ground, and players from both sides, and visitors, are welcome. People are requested to wear clothes appropriate for the time period, and visitors are asked not to disturb any players in combat outside the club.

Saint Quentin also has a small weapons store, next the the train station, Saint Quentin Importers, “No need to worry about oil or fuel prices,” joked Allied leader AngusGraham Ceawlin when he announced it’s opening. Then there is the Saint Quentin Cathedral. There are plans for a priest, Father Kravyn, to hold brief services every Sunday, “in addition to weddings, blessings or other types of services upon request.” The blessing of the cathedral and it’s first service is scheduled for April 3rd.

The northern part of the German sim has a large dark castle, with numerous rooms, and a dungeon. Work on furnishing the interior is still in progress (the rumors that the dungeon is not used for interrogations by the Germans but rather hot dates have been neither confirmed or denied).

New Bastogne continues to use two combat systems. The Vice system is used for most of the week, with the newer Blitz in play for Friday and Saturday. This had meant that for these two days aircraft couldn’t do more than scare ground targets, their bombs being unable to damage. More recently, a couple Blitz aircraft were offered to the pilots. For some pilots, however, the changes with the sims have posed a problem. Possibly because of the extra sim crossings, some pilots have found it difficult to stay in the air very long without crashing. Fortunately for them, the weekend raids on the Flying Tiger’s WW2 Pacific sims are still going on.

For the Germans, there has been some changes in the leadership. The leader of the Armee group had to leave New Bastogne. Vickster Khun, whom was in charge of the Luftwaffe group, assumed command. Duarte Koray was placed in command of the Richthofens. Some new players have also risen to prominence. Nohime Runner quickly rose from an entry level pilot to one of leading officers, taking charge of projects such as the construction of the German castle.

Besides the combat, there have also been some races. Last month, there was a horse race in the Saint Quentin sim, with a track set up around the cathedral. There were several contestants, including one Russian Cossack. A few warm-up laps were held, followed by a serious race, which was ran again when it was clear lag was causing some people to miss a turn. The winner was a lady from the German teams. Following the horse race, March has been the scene of tank races every Saturday from 3 to 5:30 PM at New Bastogne (71, 199, 3001).

On Tuesday March 15th, the Saint Quentin Club hosted a party in honor of the one year anniversary of the Bastogne combat RP, “Come Celebrate With Vickster Kuhn, our founder, the vision and continued growth of these wonderful sims.” About two dozen players and visitors attended, with Big Band music played, and a few prizes given out.

At one point, Allied commander AngusGraham Ceawlin spoke up, “I would like to thank all of you for coming in honor of the 1st anniversary of Bastogne. We owe much to Vickster Kuhn for her vision as well as countless others who have contributed their time and talents towards the continued success of New Bastogne and the Bastogne Project.” He asked all to raise a toast to her, and all at the party did, "Prost!" “Congratulations!" “Grats.”

Vickster responded with a smile, “Thank you all. ... Project Bastogne is a success due to the efforts of so many people! Not just our great sim owners Like Zewe Major, Seaone Bunyip, Joe Sparrow, Nohime Runner and Miss Ichi Yazimoto! Our admin team makes it happen! People like Miss Deusen Marx, Angus, Aeryn.... so many others! I'm so happy with the results of all our efforts!”

And so New Bastogne marches into it’s second year. Not completely without problems, but bigger and better than ever.

Bixyl Shuftan

Friday, March 18, 2011

Goonies Escapades

What a great time I had the other day. My friend, a SL inner kid, Everett Piek, called me to tell me that The Goonies Island had become Escapades and was totally different from the last time I saw it. I went to visit Everest at his little shack and we took off for a tour.

Loki Eliot has transformed the whole place. It is delightful. After stopping at the center of Rickity Town, Everett wanted me to see a surprise at the docks so off we went. Once there he took me into the John King Pirate Tavern. There I saw a scroll and a painting as the center pieces. The scroll began a story, and then we touched the picture and went into a world of the unknown.

Along the way we heard the story of Jack, with audio and visuals to enhance the trip. It is an adventure not to be missed when you visit . Everett took me around back of the Tavern and we took a ride on the Da Vinci copter up into the sky where there is a landing area on Sky Pirates Platform where you can visit the Ferret Bar. Make sure you look for that copter when you visit.

The next day I went back to look some more and ran into Loki in Rickety Town and he showed me a few of the fun things you can do along the way. I picked up a bashing stick to find treasures or taunts hidden in bushes, barrels, mushrooms. Of course I bashed a hornet next and acquired a follower that taunted and stung me.

Back in town I stopped at the market and bought some fun steam punk roller skates created by my my friend, Myrtil, who first introduced me to the SL kids on Goonie Island. There are many nooks and cranies to explore all over the island so take a trip. All are welcome.

This LM will put you in the center of the island in Rickity Town to begin your adventures. There you will find a map with teleports to the fun places.

Gemma Cleanslate

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Alvastra Monastery

One of the newest, real life places to be reproduced in SL is the Alvastra Monastery, located at Omberg/Alvastra Monestary, Gigli Aragami (99, 139, 22). One of the things I like best about SL is that it allows me to see places that I wouldn’t otherwise get to see, like this historic Swedish treasure.

SL resident Ewa Aska lives near the RL Alvastra Monastery, and she has done an outstanding job of replicating it in SL. This lovely, tranquil spot is a tribute to the RL restored Alvastra Monastery, located in Alvastra, Ödeshög Municipality, in eastern Sweden.

The original Monastery was founded in 1143 A.D. by French monks of the Cistercian order. They came from Clairvaux, France, to the province of Östergötland, Sweden. At its peak, Alvastra was the largest monastery in Sweden. It thrived for almost 400 years, but it was demolished during the Lutheran Reformation in the 1530’s. The Monastery in RL has been restored and is open to the public.

When you arrive at SL Alvastra, look to the right to see the replica of the ruins. At the landing spot there are signs where you can join the Group or donate to its upkeep. On my most recent visit a stage was set up there in preparation for a party.

But once you walk through the stone arches, you’ll find the Monastery is filled with lovely flowers, such as Black-eyed Susan’s, Foxglove, and wild garlic. You can relax with sound of a nearby waterfall and singing birds. The arches and columns create small rooms that are fun to wander through. Off to one side you will find the monks’ garden. In another small alcove there’s a quiet spot where you can kneel to meditate or pray. Here and there you’ll find a bench or a table and chairs. Bring a book and a glass of wine. There are some perfect spots to relax or just soak up some Swedish history.

Outside the ruin, past the landing area, a stone path leads up the mountain and opens into a beautiful meadow. Ewa had done a wonderful job of showcasing Sweden’s natural beauty here. Keep climbing to reach the top, but remember to bring an umbrella and wear a jacket. It’s still cold in Sweden at this time of year.

Grey Lupindo