Friday, December 14, 2012

Christmas Town

By DrFran Babcock

In my opinion, there are people in Second Life who get it. Laura Liberty is one of those residents who is able to use this virtual miracle to create environments that provide an immersive experience. Christmas Town is one of those places that is a must-see for anyone who wants the best that Second Life can offer.

 Christmas Town ( ) was created almost entirely by Laura Liberty, and it was designed to be an old-time Main Street with shops, parades, a castle, and so much more. The main street is a dreamy, idealized depiction of an innocent time that is lost in the First Life world of big-box stores and on-line shopping. The snow particles on this street are heavy and realistic. I felt underdressed in my skating outfit. However, I was dressed for skating, because that’s a big part of this glorious sim.

At the end of Main Street sits a huge, blue ice castle that is the site for an ice-skating ride that takes you through dreamy passages to scenes from beloved Christmas movies. Hop on a single or couple (if you are with someone) poseball, and you are transported effortlessly through the castle.  Sit back and enjoy the ride, because your avatar’s camera will be set to allow you to see the best of the scenes. It’s a Wonderful Life, Christmas Story, and National Lampoon’s Christmas are the source of the scenes, and the experience is sights and sounds and you—twirling and flying through the air as you skate past the scenes. I was completely entranced by this ride, because it just worked. The textures rezzed well, and there were fun surprises towards the end. I don’t want to spoil if for you, but if you ever wanted to be a star, this is the ride for you. At the end of the article I have provided a link to a very short video I made of the ice skating through Bedford Falls, because words are not enough in this case.

But wait, there’s more. Jump off the poseball and wander down Main Street to feed your need to shop. There are many little shops selling all kinds of holiday items, even things to get the jump on New Year decorating. The shadows and lighting have all been created to be cozy and warm..

At the other end of Main Street Santa awaits your marching pleasure. Jump on board his “float,” and you can high-step through the town. Santa actually speaks to you at times, so he’s either a well-scripted bot, or a real resident.

I could go on and on, but Christmas Town is really a place to see. I suggest you get there now, and skate, shop, march, and experience the best that Second Life has for us. Happy Holidays, and much love to you.

DrFran Babcock

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