06 December 2011


Recently on Flickr, where I post a lot of Second Life images, I was thumbing through some by other people (there's a huge SL community there), and a photo by Ella Avro of a sim called Venexia happened to catch my eye.

I love great city builds. (I miss some old ones—I was really saddened that Virtual Krakow left, because it was remarkably true to the old town square.) So off I went to Venexia...and...wow. This is a masterpiece. This is the sort of place to which I'd drag any new Second Life resident.

I'm not into vampires at all, and this is a vampire roleplaying sim, but visitors are warmly welcomed. You can pick up a visitor tag (good for three days, and you can get more of them) at the entrance. The roleplay here is complex, based on interaction between gangs—there are a bazillion notecards you can pick up as you arrive—and the sim apparently has its own economy and currency.

Venexia, which opened on November 7th, is the creation of Baal Zobel and Kora Zenovka, who also created Kingdom of Sand, Golgothica and Nomos. Baal states in a note, "Venexia is gothic interpretation of Venice, a specific time period is not given. It is no earlier than middle ages, the times of the great plagues, and no later than pre industrial Victoria...This is a grey Gothic rather ugly interpretation of Venice. It is not supposed to look like Venice in the bright Italian sun light, where even the dirt and decay can look beautiful. It's more like Venice on a cold misty morning in winter, so bring a coat. At the very least we hope it is an original setting for role play. Leaving behind the standard dark city or fantasy castle set that is repeated over and over in SL."

I can't imagine attempting to building anything this complex (well, then again yours truly isn't exactly a builder). Baal says, "This was a killer, and I must admit to almost giving up many times, even nearing completion. This is possibly the last big project we will do before Mesh crashes in and changes the way in which big builds are done. This is rather regrettable as I actually came to SL to get away from that detached building style, where all the work is done off line in a dead cold 3D editor."

To get around, you walk by foot or teleport to one of several locations using the gondolas that are sprinkled about. The detail and complexity of Venexia is astonishing. I was so in awe of the place as I walked around and explored that I suddenly realized that I hadn't even entered any buildings. They're every bit as lovely and carefully executed on the interior. Above is a shot of an inn called The Slaughtered Lamb, and below is a large mansion library. (Click on images to zoom in.) If you want to get to the top of St. Mark's Campanile, the huge bell tower, there's a door on the first floor you can click to get a teleport up.

The music here is refreshingly appropriate too: Telemann, Mozart, Vivaldi...a nice mix of Baroque and Classical repertoire. And windlight settings—well, the creators suggest ShadowSet, but for photos the ones I found were most fun were [TOR] Sunrise - Farmatronic sepia, [TOR] Sunrise - Frenlite, AnaLu - Outdoor City, and, well, lots of others—experiment. :)

No wonder the Lab is promoting vampires. As always, please tip if you can—there are places here and there for contributions.

No comments:

Post a Comment