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VIRTUAL WESTERNThe New Face of West Worlds
Michael Crichton wrote and directed "Westworld", a great 70's film about two guys who go to a futuristic theme park of sorts to live out their fantasies as gunslingers in the Old West. Something like the 80's Fantasy Island meets Twighlight Zone - their hopes of living like weekend cowboys turns into a nightmare when a faulty robot attempts to kill them.
Modern tourists seeking a life in the old west can visit the virtual world of Second Life where skilled online artisans have created a 19th Century Arizona downtown thoroughfare .
Second Life (SL) has a western world of sorts called "Sigil". Created in an attempt to host "old west" roll playing groups, based on the films of Sergio Leone, the town has become not only a meeting spot for like-minded players, but tourists and sight-seers as well. With over 21,000 visitors at the time of this article, it appears to be SL's favorite western town. (Sigil 141, 138, 246)
The town has a set of rules for conduct. The primary rule is that you dress according to the fashion of the time - 1870's Western.
While the town's founders provide free clothing (both men and women's styles), you may want to fashion your own outfit for use within SL.
Although I haven't found a way to pass geometry from the outside world into SL, you can create your own clothing by importing materials from elsewhere on your computer.
Content Paradise, a website dedicated to the softwareware offered from E Frontier has also recently offered some new Western collections. There is a very close connection between Poser and Second Life avatars (as you can script behaviors with the E Frontier software). Outfits supplied by Content Paradise are a great step toward integrating the E Frontier software into your Second Life workflow.
You can check out the new Old West Clothing sets for G2 Males, including my favorite (Yul-esque) character, by clicking on the image below:
If you're interested in some Old West Women, I'm afraid you've only got one option (at the time of this article). The Saloon Girl Clothing Set for G2 Females can be found by clicking on the image above.
While there is no free homesteading in Second Life, you can apply for virtual citizenship and purchase different land parcels. Find out more by visiting the Second Life website.
Ko Maruyama is a freelance animator in Los Angeles. In addition to working on film and broadcast animations, Ko teaches at Pasadena's Art Center College of Design - focusing on motion design. When working, writing or testing software allows, you can find him lending a hand in the After Effects board and lurking among the Cinema4D, Visual Effects and Photoshop posts within the DMNForums.
Related Keywords:Product Review, Feature, Second Life, SL, Poser 7, Content Paradise, Sigil, Western Role Playing
Source:Ko Maruyama. All Rights Reserved