Harbor Guide

Harbor Guide pt 1 – Shylia Market

Welcome to Harbor Guide, where we teach you all we know about Forsaken World. If you want to know more about the game, check our introductory article here.

In this first article we will go over the Shylia Market, a very important tool that will give you a lot of things for free throughout the whole game.

What is the Shylia Market? It sounds expensive!

The Shylia Market is a divine marketplace that follows you around, sortof. It is a menu you can access to “buy” items, but not with money. The Shylia Market will instead use things like Favor, Dedication or Devotion. Each of these are earned in different ways. Favor is what you’ll use the most of and is also what you’ll gain the most of. You gain favor for almost anything you do, from certain tasks to leveling up.

Speaking of favor, you’ll use this for more than the Shylia Market. For example, you’ll get footprint cards from various tasks, mobs or just find them spread around the world. These cards can be read and will give you some information about the place, and will also grant you achievement points (that can later be turned in for goodies), but it costs one favor to read a footprint card. Continue reading

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Game Quickies: Goblin Keeper Tips & Tricks 2: Advanced strategies and defense

As you progress in level you will notice that you get attacked more often, both by the AI and other players. Today we’ll discuss a bit about how we can handle this and other useful things.

I’m attacked by a more powerful foe, what do I do?

This is certainly annoying, and can be really costly at times. I myself got attacked by 4 other players well over my own level, they killed every creature I had, even at higher levels, and stole a lot of my resources. I tackled this in three ways:

1) The bully wins: The first one was at a much higher level, so I contacted him and asked if he would be willing to friend me instead. He told me all he was after was my primordial ores. Since I rarely use those, we came to a trade agreement, where he would spare me if I sent him as much as I could spare if and when he asked for it. I saw this as a sortof schoolyard tactic, where the bullied kid hands over his lunch money and gets spared, but it worked.

2) Forever friends: The second one was also a higher level than me, but this time he contacted me. After having attacked one of my expansions, he finally attacked my main dungeon. After some talk, it turned out he was just testing his army to see his limits, and my 5 lvl 30 warlocks killed one of his high-level creatures, so he was afraid of retaliation… Let me take this again: Someone of a much higher level, with creatures that kills ALL of my creatures in one attack was afraid I would retaliate against him. He friended me, and now we are even trusted friends, meaning no more bloodshed. Try to see if you can talk your attacker into becoming a friend and see if you have something in common to strengthen the bond.

3) Pacifist rules: Resources are a lot easier to protect than your creatures and your creatures require resources to level. There is a button on the lower-right toolbar that lets you set all creatures in that dungeon to passive, meaning they won’t try to defend the dungeon. If you click this and see that it is unchecked (it gets darker and more transparent), the attacking enemy can just stroll in and take all resources you haven’t put in safe storage. If you are left unattacked for long enough to build some safe storage for all three of your main storage rooms (Storage for minerals, Tavern for food and Elements Confine for primordial and mystical ores) they won’t get as much per attack. If you get enough safe storage, their attacks won’t be efficient enough and they will eventually stop attacking you.

Continue reading

So You Want to Own a Business in Second Life – Part 3

In this installment of So You want to Own a Business in Second Life, we tackle the business of Affiliates/Franchises.  Think about all of the items you have in your inventory, you will probably find many by the same one or few content creators! Often these very same content creators that you love, may have affiliate/franchise vendors that you can either purchase or at time’s get for free and set up your own Second Life business! Below are a few tips to help you get started with this type of business:

  1.  Selecting an affiliate/franchise-this may be the hardest part with this type of business, as there are many affiliate/franchise opportunities in Second Life.  You can often find such vendors on the Second Life Marketplace, by looking in the business category.  As of 7pm slt (4/23/12), there are over 3200 affiliate/franchise opportunities in Second Life! To help yourself narrow them down, think of items you like to purchase or services that you use a lot in Second Life, then do a search on the marketplace.  Of course if you are within a budget limit, some of the costly affiliates/franchises may be out of your reach and you may have to choose one or several of the freebie ones.
  2. Read the terms, rules, and instructions-this is very important as affiliate/franchise businesses often have their own terms, rules, and instructions that can affect how you set up your business.  Often such businesses may require that you join their update or merchant group, so make sure you have group space available.  Some may have requirements such as how many can be located in a particular sim and where you can place the vendors. You should also check to see who is the customer support or your first line of contact in the event that items are not delivered to customers or if you have a problem with any of the vendors. You should also read the commission split, as this may determine if it is cost-effective to even rent property to set up the affiliate/franchise.  Some affiliates/franchises pay more than others, some pay very little.  Lastly read the terms to see if you can even use and set up the affiliate/franchise business, since some vendors have avatar age restrictions—you have to be a certain age for the vendors to actual function for you correctly.
  3. Location, location, and location-land rental can be costly in Second Life the same is for shops.  You will have to have a location to rezz and set up your affiliate/franchise business.  If you buy a complete affiliate/franchise that has many vendors, then you may need a much larger piece of property, shop, and prims to get set up everything.  Of course there are many affiliate/franchise businesses that just include a single multi prim vendor, that can be prim heavy.  Choosing a location is never easy either, you may not want to set up an affiliate/franchise that contains the same business that you have within the same sim.  You also would want to look for areas that are less laggy but busy enough so you can get some traffic to the shop.  Always look around a location before making a selection.
  4. Advertising, promotions, marketing-after you set up your affiliate/franchise, you have to promote the shop’s location.  You can do things such as looking at promotional rental groups, if you are leasing property and send out notices announcing the shop’s opening.  You can also hit social media or ask the sim where you happen to lease property, if they can do a profile on your new business.  Make sure you promote your business in any groups that you own or groups where this is allowed.  You should also put your business location in your profile picks and take out a small classified ad, if it is within your budget.  Also make sure the business is listed in Second Life search via the parcel.  Another idea is to talk to the creator of your affiliate/franchise to see if they have any advertising or promotional material that you can use to set up your store or if they have any events that tie into the business that you can be a part of.
  5. Update, update and update-if you have a good affiliate/franchise business, then you should receive product updates or notifications that vendors have been update.  It is important that you make updates to vendors or place out new items as they become available, this helps your store to stay up to date and you can have new material.  If you have an affiliate/franchise that does not offer much support or updates, you may want to contact the creator to see when updates may occur. Remember when someone purchases an item from your affiliate/franchise vendors, they will always message you first if there are failed deliveries or the item does not work correctly.

If you love this type of business, then you may want to consider leaping into the world of content creation, which will be our next installment of So You Want to Own a Business in Second Life.

So You Want to Own a Business in Second Life – Part 2 (Clubs)

On our second segment of this series, we will focus on the club business in Second Life.  In case you missed the first part of our series on business owning in Second Life, you can view that story here.

If you are new to Second Life, it will not take you long to hear about clubs, events, or djing!  Owning a club in Second Life can be fun and rewarding, but it also takes a great deal of time, planning, and organization.

Since owning a business in Second Life, mirrors business owning in real life somewhat, I am going to employ a real life business concept—the SWOT Analysis.  No this is not MBA 101, but you should analyze your own capabilities before jumping into what can be a costly venture in Second life.  I have streamlined the concept of SWOT into four categories.  Please consider these five things, as they are the key to making or breaking your club in Second Life:

  1. Budget- Decide from the beginning, how much of your real life money you can put into a club.  You will need money to pay for property for the club, as well as for events if you decide to hold contests, and for advertising the club.  There is also the possibility of paying for special events, dj’s, or event hosts. You also have to budget for club equipment and the actual club building.
  2. Theme-Will your club have a theme? Is it going to be a rock, pop, top 40’s, country, etc type of club? You can also make your club appeal to a specific community in Second Life, such as goth, vampire, furry/neko, steampunk etc to name a few. What will the rating be? Adult, mature, or pg?
  3. Location-do you want your club located on the mainland or will you rent private estate land? Each type of property has it’s plusses and minuses.
  4. Staff-How will you find DJ’s and hosts? Do you have the time to host or dj yourself? Will you used managed DJ’s or will you simply send out in DJ groups?
  5. Time-Do you have the real life time to devote to the club? This is very important, particularly if you cannot find enough staff to keep your club going, you may end up hosting or DJing or at times doing both.

If, after considering the five things above and you still would want to own a club in Second Life, then keep reading! So let’s imagine you have a club set up, fully staffed, and you are ready to open for business. Before you throw open the doors, consider the following tips:

  1.  Consistency-It’s important that you have a consistent schedule, not only for your staff, but for our VIP’s.  People have routines in Second Life and if they know their favorite club is opened a certain time, they are more than likely to plan to go to your club.  Try to narrow down days and times that work for your staff and your VIPs.
  2. Advertising and Promotion-this is important so people know you even have a club in the first place!  Make sure your location parcel is listed in search, take out a classified ad, and put your club on your picks.  Encourage your staff to do this as well.  You should also strive to put events in the Second Life event’s listing daily. Of course promote your events in your group. Consider setting up a blog and tweeting events using the Secondlife tags.
  3. People-keep the drama out of your clubs, ensure that your club staff and the VIPs are happy! This means listening and paying attention to their wants and needs to ensure that your club can function without any real hassles.

Once you are ready to open and have considered everything on this list, the next steps is to keep your club fresh and a great place to be in, this means reevaluating things such as times, themes, genres, and even the location of the club. Of course paying attention to the trends of Second Life also helps.  Remember owning a club can be challenging and a lot of work, but it can be as fun as you want it to be!

Weddings In Second Life

Second Life is a very wonderful place. I know, I know you have to be crazy to want to get married in a virtual world, but it does exist and it has become one of the most popular events that could happen in your second Life. The Second Life weddings are taken seriously, just like their real life counter parts. Every detail is planned out, there is a ceremony, and although Second Life relationships might not last as long as a real life one, it shows that there is a very sacred bond between partners. You can have a very expensive wedding and you can have a wedding on a budget. Then again you could always to a Wedding Fair, to find out what is it there and affordable. But before you get to that all important wedding day, there are a few steps you have to through, Second Life dating, Second Life Relationships, Second Life Partnering and Finally the Second Life Wedding.

Wedding Fair Expo 2011

First Look: Viewer 3

When I heard that there was a new what I like to call Vanilla Viewer – the benchmark where all other tastes derive from – I knew I needed to check it out. Check out Morphman’s post on the blog as this is supposed to be a major release.
Viewer 2 got a lot of slack and negative comments by a lot of die-hard viewer 1.x fans as it was a major move away from classic looks: new interface, engine coding and feel. What Linden Labs forgot then was that people don’t like too much change. I guess they listened to the complaints as Viewer 3 has a v2 look and feel… or is it just a rename of the year old bottle of wine?

Login Screen

The login screen did change a bit: you get a website overview that in my opinion could have been more integrated into the viewer: the colors are more “website” than “viewer” based. I have a feeling this has been rushed and not looked over by a graphic designer, as the image on the top is pasted against the top bar, rounded at the bottom means for me it’s missing a bit on the top… But that’s pure esthetic!

What is interesting to me is to see the “What’s Hot Now” screen, you get an overview of the busiest sims of that moment, although I’d have to investigate if those are real-time stats (I doubt it) or some timescale is being used (more logical and server economic I think). The “Destinations” is what it is: destinations filtered by their category. If you want to feature in this I guess you have to take time to put them in the “Events” diary. Finally something that might make this feature a bit more appealing to use, as it might bring in new people to your events.

The more interesting thing is what happens when you look at the bottom: no change whatsoever! You still get a choice between “Basic” and “Advanced” mode – I’ll be skipping the former as in my opinion it takes too much away from the SL experience and thus being pointless (don’t get me wrong, it’s a great way to ease new players into the SL experience, but most will skip it within a day or two I think :)

Checking out the viewer

Of course this release gets a new number as it incorporates mesh into SL. But what is more interesting to me is if the minor “problems” have been solved… So mesh for me isn’t all that important – yes I am excited about it for other reasons, mainly to see what builders are going to do with this new toy!

Not a lot has changed at first look: the much hated – but in my opinion very useful – sidebar is still there. You get the “Linden home screen” with the same basics that were shown in V2, so i’m going to skip that. I do recommend as a new user to go over them, there is some useful stuff in there!

The profile screen got revamped when you click the “profile” button, more in touch with the website version of your profile. This was not unexpected as LL announced a more web-inclusive interface. The other tabs haven’t changed at all on a first glance. The favourites bar is still there – one of the features that I really liked about V2 from the start!

What I suspected: V3 is just V2 with mesh code incorporated into it. Not a bad idea to rename this, as it is a major difference in user experience inworld, but not per sé viewer-wise.

What is really getting on my nerves is that 3rd party viewers are able to render things right, but V3 still has a problem rendering textures right for me when I switch to “ultra” graphics settings… I can only compare to Firestorm at the moment, but there I can run SL smoothly with everything bumped up to maximum, V2 and V3 just aren’t up to the challenge! Frame rates drop, making my experience less than optimal… Why is it that a brand new high-grade computer still isn’t able to use Ultra graphics settings, Linden Labs? Why still include this!

The other thing that still get on my nerves is “depth of field”: granted, a useful tool when you’re taking pictures in Second Life, but why hasn’t this option been moved to the “snapshot” function? Depth of field isn’t that useful on a day-to-day basis.

Yes, I agree these are minor things, but annoyances non the less…

Pro
• No major changes – except of course for including mesh
• Various tweaks, like the web-integration that has been refined.
Con
• Messed up Ultra – at least for me
• Minor gripes solved in 3rd party viewers still present in Vanilla…

Conclusion

Viewer 3 is a logical rename of the previous viewer, giving users access to the long coming promise of mesh inclusion. I’m sure in time coming this will become apparent to all users, as mesh will steadily be introduced to the grid. Don’t worry, it will live perfectly next to prims and sculpties as we know them, so you don’t have to start buying new stuff immediately!

Hopefully my minor problems with V3 will be solved in the (near?) future, although these are my gripes and as with everything: you can’t please’m all!

Sven Hyx 

Oh, Good Grief!

Well that’s a contradiction in terms is it not? How can grief be good?

Some people seem to enjoy griefing in Second Life. The problem is, it obviously upsets other residents. Newbies, especially, can be put off the whole of Second Life because of it.

Firstly, what is griefing? Wikipedia describes a griefer as “ a player in a multiplayervideo gameor simulation that deliberately irritates and

Sandbox Griefing taken by SilverFox Rainbow

harasses other players.” Some newcomers to second life are lucky enough to avoid them, but most come across either a few gentle practical jokes or more rarely something that upsets them seriously or damages their avatar and animations. It has been obvious since I asked for comments about griefing, that it is a far more complex and diverse topic than I first imagined. Some people take griefers with a complete pinch of salt, while others are hurt deeply by them and a third category enjoys fighting grief with grief and turning it into an enormous jousting contest. As with most things on SL it depends on your reason to be here. If griefing gets in the way of your enjoyment then it is a bad thing, if it doesn’t then does it matter?

The big problems occur when griefing insults and damages a person along racial or religious lines, or if a person is threatened or stalked. At this level griefing is actually a criminal offence in most national legal systems, but one where it is hard to track down the culprits. Linden Labs have brought in the system of reporting bad behaviour, but this can sometimes be used by griefers themselves to upset their targets. Confiding in friends with more SL experience is a good idea if you have problems, but the immediate response once you recognise griefing is to ignore, back away or leave. The griefer wants confrontation, so do not give it to them. By all means report avatars if they persist and go beyond reasonable limits. Linden Labs will do what they can, but they will not always be able to find evidence and take things further. In LL’s terms of service you will see that griefing is a violation of the TOS. We will deal with these terms of service in a later article.

One thing that became apparent upon talking to many newcomers was how many of them were bothered at welcome areas and info hubs, pretty much as soon as they arrived. It is probably a good idea to move away from these areas as soon as possible once you become familiar with travelling. I was also very pleased to see a fair number of good citizens helping newbies at these sites and giving them starter packs of skills and hints. The problem for the newcomer is how to tell the sincere well-wishers from the insincere, and that is very much up to the individual to decide for themselves. Having said that there are several sites on SL and around the internet that will counsel on griefing and give starters help in an organised and moderated way. Try putting ‘second life newbie help’ or ‘second life griefers’ into google or the search page in your viewer. Here are two useful links.

Zion Kitty’s Newbie Help Zone    SecondLife Wiki Abuse & Griefing

I am still wanting comments and advice about griefers as our readership grows. Some of the most useful comments I have had over the last few weeks have been from absolute beginners. Your views and observations count. Do send them in.

Ricki (Fredricks.erica@gmail.com)


The home of Imprinted Designs

JC’s look at Imprinted Designs

Imprinted Designs is an example of a store created out of passion, it is the brain child of Taya Carver, who creates

The home of Imprinted Designs

body tattoos and decorations for those who wants to add a personal touch to their bodies and their homes.

“My store was born from my lifelong passion of owning my own store. I played around with a few different things such as furniture and

photography before setting into Imprinted Designs.”

 

Imprinted Designs, is divided into two groups, body tattoos and wall decals/ frames. “The basic aim for the body tattoo side of Imprinted Designs is to make beautiful body art that is affordable and creative. We offer multiple types of tattoos and even take custom orders. While the wall decal/frames sides is aimed at people who would like to express themselves through the home.”

 

25L$ Body Tattoo 'No Lies, Just Love'

Imprinted Designs is aimed at everyone from any gender and every age group. Taya talked about what inspired her work, “ Artistic expression. I have discovered myself through making my items. I have learned so much and really enjoy every piece that I put up for sale. I try to think about my customers and things they would like to see. I take suggestions and requests to heart.”

Imprinted Designs’ items cost between 20L$ -99L$ but they also offer freebies. Residents who are under 30 day old receive free regular wall decals.

Check out Imprinted Designs

Written By: June Carlson

Pictures by: June Carlson 

AutAware - Featured

Autism Awareness Hunt

Autism! Most of you readers have been in contact with an autistic person, but few of you knows what it really is. Sky Amaranth knows first hand what it is and how to deal with an autistic person, as her 13 year old brother has Aspergers, one of the many varieties of autism. She didn’t like how many people treat persons with autism, and came to the conclusion that not enough people knows what it is, therefore she started the Autism Awareness Hunt.

Sky came to the office after a day full of interviews, a bit shy at first, but soon she warmed up to both me and Izzie and answered all our

Sky Amaranth, the creator of the Autism Awareness Hunt

questions with pride and hapiness in her heart.

“I like to design clothing, I do photography, I’ve had a store for a while. I’m always thinking of new ideas.”, Sky said when asked about the hunt.”My idea came from charities I have seen all over SL, but the biggest inspiration was my brother.” Sky started the hunt right after the Mothers Day Hunt, wich was the first hunt she had put together. That hunt had some issues, but so far, the Autism Awareness Hunt has gone smoothly.

“I want to put the word about autism and how it affects not only those who have it, but those around that person. It’s not a disease that you can catch, or a deadly illness.”, she continiued. “I cannot stress this enough, people with autism does NOT use their illness as a cuthc, they simply cannot control what goes through their mind.”

There has been many participants in the hunt, and it is still in it’s early stage. There aren’t many venues, but still the traffic has been very high and Sky and the others involved hopes that the word about autism will spread from those who participate.

She has her own store, True21, with high quality fashion for a low price, and she has a special line of clothes made for this hunt where the money, along with money from an auction she held, will go to research about autism. She spends a lot of time and money on the clothes, but sells it for a cheap price. “I don’t mind, I’m not in it for the money”, she said. Most of her creations have been entirely her own brainchilds, but one line, the Love Pink series, has been inspired by her favourite RL store, Victorias Secret.

I asked her if she wanted to give the readers a final word, and this was her reply: ” PLEASE do not treat children and adults with Autism like they are an outsider, they are people just like you and I. Like I said before I can’t stress it enough; Treat them as you would like to be treated!”

We will post updates about the hunt, as well as reviews about some of the stores and items from the Autism Awareness Hunt in the weeks to come.

If you want more information about autism, or if you want to share your experiences, check out the official Autism Awareness website.

Here is a link to the starting point of the Autism Awareness Hunt: True21

Here is the link to their BLOG

Article by: Morphman

NCI_Feature

NEW CITIZENS FOR NEW CITIZENS

New Citizens Incorporated

So  here  you  are,  newly  arrived  in  SL.   What  do  you  do  and  where  do  you  go?
Well  the  world  is  your   oyster,  but  for  a  start  let’s  take  a  trip  over  to  NCI  New  Citizens  Incorporated.
This  is  a  mine  of  information  both  basic  and  complex.   The  main  body  is  an  outdoor  scene.  Something  like  a  small  park  with  open  plan  buildings.   Information  posters  deal  with  everything  from  changing  from  basic  to  advanced  viewer  (v2)   to   wearing  clothes,  building  and  scripting.
The  people  who  run  the  place  tend  to  be  very  knowledgeable  and  while  they  can  be  a  bit  over  geeky  and  techie  they  certainly  know  what  they  are  talking  about.
As  it  is  PG  rated  NCI  is  a  secure  environment  that  is  well  policed  by  land  managers.   No  nudity  is  allowed – indeed  there  are  changing  rooms  provided  for  both  male  and  female  avatars – guns,  vampires,  the  bloodlines  people  and  offensive  language  are  frowned  upon.  So  both  the  new  and  established  citizen  can   go  there  and  not  feel  threatened  or  annoyed.
The  place  has  many  freebies  on  offer.   Simply  select  the  item  from  the  sales  board  and  click  on  it.  This  brings  it  into  your  inventory.  You  can  then  drag  and  drop  it  to  the  ground.  In  some  cases   this  is  all  you  need  to  do  to  open  the  package  and  receive  the  contents. If  not,  just  right  click  on  the  rezzed  item  and  select  open/copy  to  inventory,  Remember  to  clean  up  afterwards.
The  freebies  cover  pretty  much  everything.   You  may  need  a  free  translator  if  your  first  language  isn’t  English  or  if  you  believe you  may  need  to  chat  with  foreign  speakers.   Mega  prims  and  boxes  of  many  textures  are  available  for  the  would  be  visitor.   Free  clothing  is  available.  However,  it  is  of  a  variable  quality,  but  that  is  true  of  any  SL  freebie  clothing.  Whole  avatars  can  be  found  here  too.   By  and  large  they  are  pretty  well  constructed  too.
You  can  also  find  free  homes,  furnishings,  and   vehicles  here,  but  again,   be  aware  the  quality  may  well  vary.
If  you  wish  to  try  your  hand  at  building  there  is  a  sizeable   sandbox  across  the  road.   Classes  in  building  are  also  offered  but   people  outside  the  USA  should  be  aware  that  these  may  be  on  at  time  that  is  not  exactly  convenient.
On  the  whole  NCI  is  a  friendly,  safe  and  informative  place  where  the  new  citizen  can  come  to  equip  themselves  with  the  basic  knowledge  and   items  with  which  to  begin  their  life  here.
They  even  have  a  photo  booth,  so  you  can  produce  that  all  important  profile  picture  of  yourself.  What  more  could  you  ask  for?

SLURL

Article by: Spug Shinn

Photos by: Morphman