I spent my first 2 weeks in SL on Orientation Island - somehow I had read in a blog an advice of not going to the mainland too soon, because there was a lot to learn and pick up first, and once gone you could never return.
I did soon tire of rezzing at the landing point on top of some ones head, so I found a spot in the woods where I would normally go to before logging of, so I could come online again a bit by myselves. That was actually my first home in SL:-)
Once I did the crossing I was shocked at how empty mainland was. Compared to the buzz of OI, with lots of fun talk and old residents showing off their blings and fancy costumes, it was actually a real downturn.
Later I rented a house to get my first place, and that place really meant the world to me. There, I could learn to move prims around, and had a place to invite friends to. I guess the real attraction of SL did not start until then.
Looking back on my first hours experience, I can certainly understand why lots of new people just drop out. I do wonder how SL would have seemed to me if I had been placed directly into a house of my own, with lots of other people living close by? I can't help but think that this would help a lot more people trying out SL to actually become residents.
And that leads us to the Beta continent of Nascara. The Linden Homes. What they will offer those signing up for premium subscriptions. I have done some exploring:-)
These modern "park" is not exactly my style; and there don't seem to be a frigging single real city around! How come they ALLWAYS use that dull green kind of grassy texture on the ground? Where is the concrete and the asphalt? Those square houses would have fitted much more nicely besides square stone-paved walls. But they do promise more themes:-)
The Moles have created several themed villages in Nascara. As they previously showed when making Nautilus, the Lindens are not afraid of putting in a lot of empty public spaces when they make flagship continents. If you walk away from the rather cold modernistic style you find yourselves crossing a stone wall, and suddenly the all-green trees gives way to more colourful plants:
Moving forward for a while I find my selves in the outskirts of a Japanese village:
Actually, this is my favourite spot so far; unusual trees, stone pavements, peaceful houses, back alleys:
One really interesting question is how residents with different cultural background will populate these areas: Will all the Japanese gather in these kinds of village? Will there be US or European "subcultures" in eastern style areas? Are there fairies in Japan?
I really could imagine having a good time in here! And that's good, because they don't even allow skyboxes in this continent LOL.
Then there is Hobbiton, also quite a cozy place:
My fairy alt would love this place, maybe she should have a premium subscription for Christmas?
Root and branches, where is Radagast the brown when you need him? The lindens have cut down Fangorn forest, and the Ents are mighty angry!
One of the coolest things about these "homes" is that they are all mostly autorezzed. LL claimes the whole continent of 64 sims was rezzed in 13 minutes; they will certainly need that kind of capability to scale if tens of thousands residents wants a place here:-) I do hope they will keep up this "small village" kind of setup, mixing different themes like they do now.
All in all, I think the Linden Home offer will be a great enhancement of the premium subscription. The Lab and their moles have done some nice work; its mostly aesthetically nice and will give new people a taste of what SL can be. Really looking forward to see how it will work out!
A Second Life® avatar with alts on ReactionGrid, OSGrid and OpenLife; friendly, curious, open. Spend most of my time building, scripting, exploring and chatting with friends. Always loves to meet new people.