Gridwide Protips

June 2, 2009

Protip: Bright Red Body Bits

Filed under: Clothes — ziggyquirk @ 11:03 am

Protip: Bright Red Body Bits

I know I know. You hid it! I’m using a penis here as it’s a bigger example than a vagina, but the basic message is the same – people DO walk around with Highlight Transparent on and they DO snigger at your meat. I’m sorry, it’s true. Well maybe not everyone does, but I have been known to.

I know it’s easier to just leave things on, but if you’re not actually having sex, stripping or involved in some other activity that requires body bits then you really should detach the bits you don’t need. Hiding, as you can see, doesn’t really do much and you’re still running a script that need not be running. Even a low lag penis (this one adds a low 258 to the avatar rendering cost) may add less than a head of hair, but if it’s not required it’s better to ditch it for the time being, because every scrap of rendering counts in SL.

And ladies, when you pop your pants on, you might be interested to know that your vagina does show through, because clothes in SL don’t work like RL clothes and it’s like belly button rings – they sit on top of shirts, well your vagina sits on top of your jeans. Which basically just looks hilarious.

And that ladies and gents is why I highlight transparent in crowded places – because it cracks me up.

Protip: Auto LMs

Filed under: Business — ziggyquirk @ 9:44 am

Protip:Auto LMs

To be honest, I wouldn’t be surprised if I was alone in this. It irks me. It shits me up the wall, to be frank. Probably no one else is bothered, but that’s okay, I can live with being a rebel.

I land at your store and am immediately offered a landmark and sometimes a group invite. Usually these things are offered before the store has even rezzed properly.

Now, okay, it’s not a big hassle to click “decline” and that’s not what shits me about this, it’s the assumption that I will WANT a LM and group invite. Group spaces are limited and you’re offering me an invite to a group when I’ve yet to see what you have for sale. LMs pile up in my inventory like nothing else (apart from notecards) and I barely, if ever, use them again.

I can totally understand having a greeter offer an information card, especially if you’re selling textures and want the terms of use nice and clear. I can get that, and that’s not a bother.

And of COURSE you need to have confidence in your own product, or else why bother doing anything at all? I get that too, but for some reason this idea that I will love everything you do want want a LM and to be in the group… rubs me the wrong way.

I would suggest a touch to join group sign prominently displayed, and a LM giver beside it. Let your customer decide if they want your LM, and of course shove it in every box. That’s good for two reasons – 1 it lets your customer find “The person that made that awesome dress I bought” again, and 2. if someone asks your customer “Where did you get that dress?” they have a handy LM right in the folder. Win win. I dunno, makes more sense to me.

June 1, 2009

Protip: Explore

Filed under: Hints and Tips — ziggyquirk @ 9:47 am

Protip: Explore

It’s easy to forget sometimes that a lot of places in SL are created just to be beautiful. I know I forget it all the time. You bounce from shop to shop, mall to mall and maybe club to club without seeing all that’s out there.

So this protip is short and sweet, and it’s something I used to do a lot before the lag monster bent me over a table. Pull up the map, drag it around, close your eyes, click and hit TP (open your eyes for that bit). Sure you might land somewhere horrible, but you might find all sorts of interesting little things that people have created just for the hell of it. At the very least you might find a new designer. So, no snark, just an idea for something to do should you find yourself at a loose end in SL sometime. Bounce around, see what you can discover.

May 15, 2009

Protip: Talking Bellies

Filed under: TMI — ziggyquirk @ 11:01 am

Protip: Talking Bellies

I confess I haven’t been around great hordes of pregnant women in my life, but I’ve been around enough to know that should I start hearing their unborn child talking, it’s time to see a shrink.

Again, I really need to stress that I’m NOT anti-roleplay, and if having a prim baby is what really makes you happy, then knock yourself out. But for the love of monkeys the rest of us are skeeved right out by your yakking uterus.

I’ve never heard talking bellies that are being really really honest about pregnancy (bear in mind I have no kids, but have heard these complaints). You never hear a belly in SL saying “Upthe Duff’s ankles are now swollen to incredible sizes” “Upthe Duff’s bladder is now being squashed by her uterus” “Upthe Duff is currently mid moodswing and may need to stab you in the eye”. “Upthe Duff is incredibly constipated”. No no, it’s always “Upthe Duff feels her tummy tickle as her baby kicks”. “Upthe Duff glows with joy at the thought of her unborn baby”. (I don’t know if Duff has been an SL last name, if it has and you happen to be Upthe, sorry!).

Now, most people can tell by your shape that you are “expecting”. The talking uterus is really not helping you seem like a balanced roleplayer. It kinda screams “I AM A FREAK!”. Sorry. I polled at least 9 people and that’s pretty much word for word what came out of their brains, I’m just the reporter here.

In short, if you wouldn’t stand up in a crowded bus and shout “I am feeling a fluttering in my tummy as my unborn baby kicks inside my uterus!” then there’s no need to be so descriptive in SL either. Surely someone’s made a talking belly that only talks to the owner, if not – someone needs to get on that. That way the expecting of SL can have their reminders that they’re expecting, and the rest of us can rest a little easier not contemplating the internal workings of the avi next door.

May 13, 2009

Protip: Prim Boobs

Filed under: Clothes — ziggyquirk @ 11:54 am

Protip: Prim Boobs

My first impulse is to just say “What the merry hell do you think you look like?”. I mean, taking the example image, she seems to have spouted something slightly booblike from her lower ribcage. I don’t mean to be a partypooper, but ladies aren’t actually built that way.

The 100 value on the chest slider is clearly not enough for some “ladies”. I say “Ladies” although mostly i believe they are men at the keyboard. Simply because most women I know look at these things and think “Ack, backpain and slipped discs”. Nothing sexier than laying flat on the floor whimpering from a slipped disc. Trust me, I know.

Why why why? Well, removing the idea that these are mostly guys, I think it goes back to the idea of sexy being biiiiiiiiiiiiig boobs and a tiny waist. Which for some people it is, but even so the 100 value should really be enough for anyone.

In short, these are gross. Really, honest to god gross. If anyone had this shape in RL they’d be unable to move without falling over – and while I know SL isn’t about RL and it’s purely about fantasy in every form, that doesn’t take away from the “EW” factor of these attachments. For one, they are generally poorly shaped. The original poster of this image said these look like garlic cloves, and that’s very true, I have rarely if ever seen anything actually breast shaped passing as prim boobs. They are also often badly skin matched and nearly always badly placed (see comment about ribcage above).

Even discounting all that, prim boobs need to be worn with special boob clothing, because they cover the avatar mesh. Which means you miss out on really lovely things to wear and are at the mercy of the boob maker.

Plus, everyone totally knows you’re a guy. Detach the garlic, please.

Original snap by Jinger Jefferson, used with kind permission. Thanks Jinger!

May 10, 2009

Protip: Sexy

Filed under: Clothes,Manners,TMI — ziggyquirk @ 9:36 am

Protip: Sexy

I understand the dilemma. Your skin might have cost a bit, or it might be beautifully detailed. I know. I have skins with the best tones and shaping, they’re incredible. And in a way it’s a credit to the skin designer that you’re willing to share so much of their work with the world, but honey it’s not sexy.

There was a time in human history where a glimpse of ankle could send a man wild with lust, because it was something not many people saw in those days of long skirts and thick stockings. Do you remember that scene in “The Piano” where Harvey Keitel was obsessing over the hole in thingo’s stockings? There’s a lesson in that.

Now, I don’t want you to think I’m Purdy Prudepants, because I’m not. My avi wears her share of little skirts and boobtubes. Things like mesh tops get something under them though, because where’s the mystery in flashing everything you’ve got? There isn’t any, and what’s sexy? Mystery. In a world where basically everyone is beautiful, the best way to get attention is not to say “Hey! I have nipples!” it’s “Hey, play your cards right and you might see my skin, which is wonderfully toned and SO well made, seriously”.

I guess I’m just tired of seeing breasts. Everywhere. Regardless of sim rating or location. “I’m going out to buy a chair, better get the nips out”. This sort of clothing is really best for you and your partner/s, it’s not that it’s gross, per se, it’s just so over done. There’s no way for all you topless lasses to compete really. You hit 100 on your tit slider? Well done, so did everyone else. Put a damn shirt on!

May 8, 2009

Protip: Facelights

Filed under: Clothes — ziggyquirk @ 9:57 am

Protip: Facelights

Ah, facelights. What began as a simple little prim worn just beyond the end of the nose to smooth over the harsh angles Windlight added to some skins is now a full blown stadium lighting rig.

SL light rendering works kinda like this: If you already have 6 prims with the same radius setting, the 7th and further prims won’t light . So if you’re surrounding your pretty little head with a half dozen lights, only you can see them really, which might make you very happy indeed, but honestly in most cases – no one else is seeing you lit up.

Perhaps to counteract this 7th light curse, some facelights are now belting out enough glare to light half the grid. What does this do to your avi? Not much, really. It bleaches out your prim attachments and destroys most of the tone of your skin. So why are you doing it? Clearly there’s either a vanity issue – “It might be dark out there! How will people see me??” or a windlight issue – “Windlight made my fave skin look fugly”. The second one can be easily fixed with a SMALL radius light in FRONT of your face. You don’t need a solar system of lights bouncing around your head. Really, you don’t. And if you look at the picture here, perhaps you can see why. All the special tinting in the world won’t save a prim attachment that is being hit with the force of a thousand suns. You’re making your lovely clothes look unlovely.

So, in the interest of not destroying the ambiance at your favourite club, and not competing with the sale boards at your favourite store, please please tone down the lights. No one but you thinks you’re special enough to need to be seen from space.

May 3, 2009

Protip: Freebies

Filed under: Manners — ziggyquirk @ 7:17 am

Protip: Freebies

Back in the stone age when I joined SL, there was 1 freebies place, run by the Lindens and sending out little outfits and things to get people started in their Second Life (and also to rip to bits and learn how to build). Stores also offered the occasional freebie, be it something the person had made for fun, for promotion of their product or just something they felt like sharing. These were fun things to find. Group owners would sometimes toss out a freebie in a group notice, perhaps one of the new hair style they’d made, or one colour of shirt, to thank the group for their support and to entice you in to see the other colours.

None of this is enough anymore, apparently. The “I am entitled to anything I want in my Second Life without spending a single Linden” mindset is become all too familiar to designers who are running around creating freebies, setting up hunts and handing out gifts left right and center in order to appease the grabby handed and keep up with the new way of doing things.

At this point, I’d like to share some notes a friend of mine got on releasing a new limited edition item. For the purpose of not making it all obvious, we’re going to say the new item was a Widget. Because it was.

I just wanted to let you know that I think you have let all of your group members down as you have not given away any free stuff last month.

And now you are asking $600 and $850 for a Widget?!

It is pretty, but I would not pay that much for just a widget.

Please consider giving something away soon to thank your group members for being in your group and consider keeping your prices low so that everyone can afford them.

Update groups, for the record, are just that – groups that store owners and designers use to let people know there’s new items, sales or whatever. Sometimes there might be a group gift from time to time, or special group rates on vendors. An Update Group does NOT in anyway imply you will get every release for free. And why should you? If you think about it, if every designer stopped charging for their stuff, they’d have no way to pay land tier or mall rentals and therefore they’d not be designing anything at all. Okay, note two:

I just wanted to let you know how sad I find it that you’ve become one of the greedy bitches SL seems to be full of these days, who keep raising their prices regardless of the fact the economy is bad and people have no money.

I have beloned to your group on my alt for a long time now and you used to give beutiful things away for free. Now this 850 widget is just ridiculous. you should think about how unfair it is to people like me who want to own nice widgets but can’t afford it anymore.

Thanks for nothing!!

“You used to give beautiful things away for free”. This designer spends DAYS on her widgets, she’s detail orientated and creates seriously some of the greatest widgets in SL, but she should give them away for nothing?

So let’s all try this: Designers, stop giving stuff away. What’s the point, honestly, if all you get is demands to make everything you sell available for nothing? Shoppers, being demanding and ungrateful for what the designer has GIVEN you for NOTHING is a really awesome way to make sure they never give you anything else.

Edit: Wow. Hi everyone. More from my brain on this issue can be found at my slightly less ranty blog

April 10, 2009

Protip: Kid Sized

Filed under: Clothes — ziggyquirk @ 9:33 am

Protip: Kid sized.

Please don’t for one minute think I’m anti child avis. I’m not. I’ve spent a little time with kids in SL, have a child alt for that matter. While a lot of people say “Why the hell do you want to pretend to be a KID?” I don’t see it as any different to logging into World of Warcraft and pretending to be a Night Elf.
But having said that, “child” avis like this.. well they gross me out. Why? Same reason a RL child in full make up and a miniskirt grosses me out – kids are NOT meant to be sexy. It’s gross because if you’re being a SL kid, why do you want to look sexy? Cute, sure, everyone likes cute and kids SHOULD be cute, but this is NOT cute, it’s obscene.
So, if you want to play a child in SL, by all means go right ahead. There’s a hundred awesome places to hang out, get yourself a family and shop. But if you want to be sexy, hot and (dare I say) look like a slut, bring the height slider up some take any child references out of your profile. Otherwise you’re just icky, and giving the kids of SL a bad name.
Submitted by: Ziggy Quirk

April 8, 2009

Protip: Bling

Filed under: Clothes — ziggyquirk @ 11:59 am

Protip: Blingtards

Bling in SL started, as I recall, as a way to give “silver” or “gold” items a subtle shine, as though the light was catching them when you move.
Somewhere along the way things went horribly, horribly wrong with bling.
Sure, it’s hard for newbies and oldbies alike. Things that you don’t think would bling – such as leather shoes, hair and trouser cuffs – tend to be incredibly blingy, burning the eyeballs of yourself and everyone around. Since the effect is particle based, it’s also not easy to get rid of. Deleting the script does nothing, because the bling becomes built in. There IS a free script out there called “Scrubber” which will remove any and all bling from an item. Ask around.
Most all of the freebies designed to get newbies outfitted tend to bling also. Is this how we want people introduced to SL? As shiny blingtards? I think not.
SO! If you buy something with bling, read the notecard to see how to turn it off. If there’s no turn off option, IM the creator and complain. And please, PLEASE don’t do it on purpose. It doesn’t say “Hey I am AWESOME and FUN TO BE AROUND and SEXY!” it says “I ARE A BLINGTARD LULZ”
Submitted by: Faery S (sorta, I did the ranting) from a piccy by Flippa. Thanks gals!

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