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My negative feedback on Second Life


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Ok well, I did a big thread on why I love SL (and I do, it's my favourite game I have ever played ^_^)... however!

I thought it would be good to put the things that have really caused me issue on the "game". This is just intended to be constructive criticism, that's all :)

They are in order of severity, according to me :)

  • Fitting clothing. Really, this should be much easier. I think it could do with a bit of an overhaul. The normal clothing can cling weirdly to your character, meaning that you have to go for mesh, but mesh seems unnaturally rigid and doesn't cling hardly at all to your character, meaning hours wasted tweaking clothing to make it fit, changing items of clothing that you like just because they don't look right with another, etc. The whole thing feels quite cobbled together and archaic now. Yes you can make it work if you're very experienced or whatever but it's not very newbie friendly. I really think it needs to be rethought.
  • Clunky camera controls. I think we should implement that right click and hold to turn camera style that games like World of Warcraft have. It seems silly to be relying on a camera panel in 2014. Surely the camera system could be reworked to make it feel a bit more natural and fluid, and without even that much effort?
  • Random glitching. It would be nice to see some of this smoothed out a bit. Such as when you go to sit down and it glitches and so on. It's not the end of the world, it would just result in a cleaner experience that's all.
  • Wooden character movement. To be fair it's not that bad once you get used to it. Looks a bit odd when you first start but it's ok. Shift to run might be quite nice, and a smoother jumping animation would be good.

 

I do understand that the degree of environment and character customisation in SL make it harder to implement some of the above. I just think that if SL is going to truly compete in 2014, it needs to look a bit more natural and smoother to use.

A game like Entropia Universe, while nowhere near as good as SL, does show how smooth a social MMO can feel, and something like IMVU, whilst also nowhere near as good as SL, does show how simple changing clothing and things can be.

I really want SL to go from strength to strength and I don't want to see it ever die - I love what has been achieved!

I hope some of these things are considered or maybe even are being worked on already! Please please please! ^_^

Thanks :)

Mike

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The only thing I can help with here is camera controls, you do not have to use the clunky camera panel. Holding down the Alt button and left clicking drags your camera around, moving your mouse while holding the Alt key gives you nice smooth camera movements without using the panel. 

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Thanks for the help with the camera, Uncommon Truth.

I think the clothing thing is by far my biggest problem, I find it spoils the immersion a little because I can't just put on and take off clothing as easily as real life, it's like everything grrrriiiiinds to a halt the second I try to do it lol

I know I'm new. I just think it should be easier than this is all, for newbies and for everyone :)

I think it would help the "game" to be more popular in future.

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Hoppimike wrote:

Thanks for the help with the camera, Uncommon Truth.

 

I think the clothing thing is by far my biggest problem, I find it spoils the immersion a little because I can't just put on and take off clothing as easily as real life, it's like everything grrrriiiiinds to a halt the second I try to do it lol

 

I know I'm new. I just think it should be easier than this is all, for newbies and for everyone
:)

 

I think it would help the "game" to be more popular in future.

This here proves what I said in another thread. People who come to SL with the idea of it being a game, expect it to function in the same way a game does. The way an environment functions when its designed by the same bunch of specialized, paid and experianced staff.

Second Life is entirely different and even if LL wanted, they don't have 100% influence on what you describe here, because a bunch of disorganized, independend peoples makes everything in SL....the users create the clothes, not some group of game designers. You get get perfect clothes and restrict the freedom, or you get non-perfect clothes but every freedom you want.

 

And "more popular"...who do you think would join Second Life?

- Most gamers are bored with it, because they miss what a true game has to offer.

- Facebook-Fans want RL, not an immersive virtual world, where people like to keep their RL private.

SL was never a product for the mainstream market.

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Hoppimike wrote:

 
  • Random glitching. It would be nice to see some of this smoothed out a bit. Such as when you go to sit down and it glitches and so on. It's not the end of the world, it would just result in a cleaner experience that's all.
  • Wooden character movement. To be fair it's not that bad once you get used to it. Looks a bit odd when you first start but it's ok. Shift to run might be quite nice, and a smoother jumping animation would be good.

Hi, I'm curious, what do you mean with random glitching exactly?

Also, adressing the wooden character movement, there's good and bad AO's around, if you experience wooden character movement you may be using a bad AO. Search the marketplace and go to stores in world to preview their AO's and you'll find that there's quite a few that are very smooth and not wooden at all.

Edit: Same goes for animations placed within furniture. 

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In addition to Uncommon Truth's advice about using ALT to control the camera, you can also use combinations of ALT, SHIFT and CONTROL. While holding down the key combos, either move the mouse, or use the arrow or WASD keys (up/down arrow = W/S = mouse forward/back, left/right arrow = A/D = mouse left/right).

For all control key combinations, clicking on something moves the camera focus to that thing. In all modes, the cursor shows a retangular target icon, but with varying hint icons depending on the mode.

ALT

  • cursor looks like a reading glass
  • foward/back = zoom in/out
  • left/right = rotate camera

ALT+CONTROL

  • cursor shows rotation circles
  • foward/back = rotate down/up
  • left/right = rotate right/left

ALT+CONTROL+SHIFT

  • cursor shows panning arrows
  • foward/back = pan down/up
  • left/right = pan right/left
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Hoppimike wrote:

but... why should it be bad by default, and then corrected by an AO?

 

Shouldn't it just look better to begin with?
o.O

Why?

Again, this is your expection because you came into SL with the mindset of someone used to games and expecting a game.

In games, every character gets animated by (again) a bunch of game designers. They deciede every animation from sleeping, over dancing to walking and kissing. There is ONE was your character moves. You don't have the choice to adjust that. Of course, it will look smooth and clean...but is it your personal taste?

Wouldn't you like to deciede on your own, how your character moves?

There are many many AOs out there and I'm glad I'm not glued to one set of movements here.

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Hoppimike wrote:

  • Fitting clothing. Really, this should be much easier. I think it could do with a bit of an overhaul. The normal clothing can cling weirdly to your character, meaning that you have to go for mesh, but mesh seems unnaturally rigid and doesn't cling hardly at all to your character, meaning hours wasted tweaking clothing to make it fit, changing items of clothing that you like just because they don't look right with another, etc. The whole thing feels quite cobbled together and archaic now. Yes you can make it work if you're very experienced or whatever but it's not very newbie friendly. I really think it needs to be rethought.

Look into shifting your shape to a standard size. Male avatars only need to make 9 shape dials fit one of the sizes and then you can more or less wear the bulk of SL mesh clothing. As for pre-mesh clothing... body paint... its the 2003 method, and looks dated even by 2003 standards... Toss the stuff.


Hoppimike wrote:

  • Clunky camera controls. I think we should implement that right click and hold to turn camera style that games like World of Warcraft have. It seems silly to be relying on a camera panel in 2014. Surely the camera system could be reworked to make it feel a bit more natural and fluid, and without even that much effort?

Yes the camera controls are clunky compared to ANY OTHER 3D environment. And users here who have never played other MMOs don't get it with regards to how strange and bizarre SL's system is compared to industry norms for a 3D UI. - So when you raise this concern, you get them attacking you with 'this isn't an MMO' because they lack perspective... The ALT tricks don't really cut it... but they're better than nothing, sometimes...


Hoppimike wrote:

  • Random glitching. It would be nice to see some of this smoothed out a bit. Such as when you go to sit down and it glitches and so on. It's not the end of the world, it would just result in a cleaner experience that's all.

This one is the nature of user based content with few constraints to prevent poorly made goods, coupled with over-taxed servers suffering under the weight of... poorly made user content...


Hoppimike wrote:

  • Wooden character movement. To be fair it's not that bad once you get used to it. Looks a bit odd when you first start but it's ok. Shift to run might be quite nice, and a smoother jumping animation would be good.

The default animations are horrid. SL was put together by the geekiest of tech geeks. People who socially seem to "live in the basement of the basement of their grandparent's asylum...

They just assumed nobody cared about what the avatar looked like or how it moved, because we'd all be permanently in sandboxes 'making thing with prims and script code'.

Over the years hacks have been layered onto SL to move it away from that sandbox... but everytime a new major feature comes out, the company goes right back to failing to understand social... thus you get things like the mesh issue; where it NEVER OCCURRED to them that people would wear mesh as clothing or alternate body parts (heads, tails, etc...)

- Despite this use now being so overwhelmingly present.

Apparently not only did it fail to occur to them, but they limited testing to 'people just like them' who also failed to consider it...

- And that's just how things go around here. Great as the game might be, it has some really funky corners...

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Ah, turns out that they ARE actually working on these things (and more), but not in Second Life.

 

They are putting together a new game that is currently in alpha.

 

Explains a lot!

 

http://highfidelity.io

 

Well, in that case I look forward to it and other similar projects immensely and will play SL until the natural successor is released :)

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Yes, clothing can be hard.  But that is largely because *ALL* of the content in SL is made by the residents, and the residents have widely varied skills.

"The normal clothing can cling weirdly to your character" ,,,,  actually it is literally painted onto the base avatar.  I am in awe of the digital artists who can use light and shadows to make it pop.  Gotta find them, but they are there.

"but mesh seems unnaturally rigid and doesn't cling hardly at all to your character".  Yup. True.  With rare and precious exceptions.  I have found only two vendors I will buy without even trying on the mesh.  Most mesh designers do not make it past the first animation with the demo. It is easy to make a mesh that looks good in a pose.  Hard to make one compatible with the particular limitations of SL.  A lot of designers kind of sniff, and say "SL oughta be more like my concept of perfection"  A few look at reality and work with it.

"Yes you can make it work if you're very experienced or whatever but it's not very newbie friendly."  True, sadly.  And hard to get around with all the amateur content.  But for me it is a big part of the enduing charm.

 

 

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Hoppimike wrote:

Ah, turns out that they ARE actually working on these things (and more), but not in Second Life.

 


That's being put out by the founder of LLs, who's since left, because we all refused to be the sandboxer customers he wanted. I expect it to be a higher-def version of all of SLs mistakes, and few of its corrections.

 

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Hi H. Mike..

Have you tried making 'outfits'? Thats about the quickest way to change your clothing.

 

 Working with outfits

You can save your clothing and attachments as an outfit (a folder containing everything you wish to wear). When you drag the outfit folder onto yourself, you'll instantly switch to the avatar shape, clothing, and/or attachments in the folder. 

Creating outfits is a great way to organize your inventory and makes it easy to quickly change your avatar's appearance.

To create an outfit:

  1. Attach or wear the clothing items you wish to make inito an outfit.
  2. Right-click your avatar and choose My Appearance.
  3. Click the Save As button.
  4. Enter the name of your outfit in the dialog box.
  5. Click OK.
  6. Your new outfit folder will be located in your Clothing folder in your inventory.

Making a new outfit creates an inventory link to each original inventory item in the outfit. This allows you to create multiple links to a single item. A link is shown in italics with the word (link) beside it. Each link is entirely dependent on an original item, and any changes to that item will affect all links.

If you copy an item and then modify it, links created to each copy are independent.

Using your inventory

I hope this helps ease some of your frustration! :matte-motes-bashful-cute-2:

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Thanks again for the great replies!

There is a lot to learn for sure, and because I am quite late to SL (not sure why, I guess I was distracted by other games and I was a bit too young when it was big to "get it") it's almost like I have 11 years of history to catch up on!

Lots of your replies are very informative and well thought-out though - yours was very good Pussycat Catnap, sorry I didn't reply more to it afterwards, I guess I was so bombarded by info from so many sources haha :)

It was helpful though!

I will switch to more mesh stuff asap, it's just I find it more tricky so I'm not rushing into it. Some of my stuff is mesh. My char looks mostly ok I think and seems to pull at virtual clubs so he can't be that bad haha xD

Overall... I mean... the game is 11 years old so I can let it off some things being archaic. It still seems to me by FAR to be the best "social MMO" (or whatever you want to call it!) in the world, and overall it's still a joy to use. I'm sure I can get over the little niggles (especially the clothing one, with patience) and once I've overcome the hurdles I will enjoy it more. It IS a shame that the hurdles exist, but I am in a relatively small percentage of players who is spending that much longer on their avatar (many people's seem pretty straight-forward) and so I'm hitting some increases in complexity.

Still loving my time on the "game" though ^_^


Oh, and great video link Perrie Juran - I watched it! Really strange to see now, isn't it?

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Oh yeah, he doesn't run LL anymore, just noticed that. I read that he ran it again for a period in 2010 or something, so he's been a bit in and out of the company it seems. I suppose now he's got his eye on future projects.

I really like Philip Rosedale though - he's probably my favourite current developer because I can totally, totally understand his mindset behind these visions he has and puts together, it's very similar to what I would want to create.

I must prefer it to mindless grinding and questing and so on... I don't understand that stuff at all, unless maybe it's done INCREDIBLY well.

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There's a whole set of former Lindens who find that people who hang out in clubs with beaches and dance to music are a bunch of disabled social loser freaks and crazy middle aged cat-ladies... to, somewhat, paraphrase SL's founder himself on the point. They tried really hard to shake all the 'loser disabled people' from using SL, back under M. Linden... but the 'business users' wouldn't show up to play to take over from us 'pathetic middle aged cat ladies'... so... they started leaving LLs, and handed the company to a guy who formerly worked on 'The Sims' or something... and then that guy burned out after a while and now its in the hand of a guy who apparantly had an account here as an actual user 'way back when in secret'...

Our new CEO appears to be the first one that's actually maybe someone who understands us. We shall see... :)

 Its likely that Phillip wasn't trying to express a negative opinion of his customers way back when this was all said. He may have been trying to say that SL has been a wonderful thing for people who because of disability or isolation are unable to engage in society - that it widens their social opportunities and lets them connect without being judged first.

But its an aspect of techies here in Silicon Valley that given a good way to say something and a bad way - they almost always end up expressing a point in the manner that most alienates others...

- Its a very frequently occuring issue that's been straining relations here to the point of 'folks' actually holding protests outside the homes of some techies...

 

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Ethan Paslong wrote:

and please.... stop calling sl a game, as long you see it like that you don't get what it really is.

I disagree. Please stop not calling it a game. It is one.

As long as you stick to that outdated concept of a game, you don't get what it really is.

http://catnapkitty.wordpress.com/2012/04/11/meh-its-just-a-video-game-amiright-second-life-need-to-own-what-it-is-a-game/

 

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Ethan Paslong wrote:

and please.... stop calling sl a game, as long you see it like that you don't get what it really is.

I sooo agree

and the avatar is not a Char! unless created for the specific purpose of role play. 

By the way: high fidelity is partly financed by the Lindens and partly by Google Ventures. Recently Facebook took over the company which builds a 3D Viewer Rosedale is using for his projekt!

 

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The default animations are horrid. SL was put together by the geekiest of tech geeks. People who socially seem to "live in the basement of the basement of their grandparent's asylum...

 

Its called Nerds!

 

 

but then again, that is good news to the producers of animations and AO´s. A business opportunity for several SL Residents. I wonder how much money the owner of Vista Animations is drawing out of the "game".

I am sure they would not be amused if the Linden-Nerds give the starting avatars really nice animations!

 

 

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Pussycat Catnap wrote:


Ethan Paslong wrote:

and please.... stop calling sl a game, as long you see it like that you don't get what it really is.

I disagree. Please stop not calling it a game. It is one.

As long as you stick to that outdated concept of a game, you don't get what it really is.

 

if you link to your own blog it's not really a referencepoint to trash what i said

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