I first visited Steelhead, albeit very briefly, earlier this year when I was poking my nose into mazes around Second Life and dropped in on the Southwest Gate Hedge Maze of Nevermoor. I had a quick look around at the time and added Steelhead to my list of places to review for my series on SL destinations – something I finally managed to do over the past few days.
Steelhead is described as “an American Victorian Steampunk Community in the Second Life Nestled in the Coastal Pacific Northwest”. It’s a group of seven regions, which bring together commercial, residential and role-play elements in a themed community focused steampunk and which bring together an eclectic and fascinating range of themes.
There are a number of teleport points through the community, so rather than scatter them across this article, I’ll list them at the end.
Steelhead itself is the commercial centre for the community. here you’ll find the train station, stores and wide streets and the town hall, wherein a weekly meeting of residents is held to discuss community matters. To the west of this is Steelhead Shanghai, a fascinating “Sino-steampunk” region which brought to mind photos I’ve seen of the Hong Kong harbour front circa the 1920s (although Hong Kong admittedly never had dirigible junks sitting on the waterfront).
Steelhead Harborside is mostly residential, and offers a nice walk along footpaths bordered by houses which keep to the theme of the community, and across bridges over canal-like waterways which give the place a very homely and attractive feel. To the north sits Steelhead Nevermoor, which brings a touch of mystery and magic to the estate (and which I most enjoy exploring at night). It is also where you can find the maze mentioned at the top of this article.
Moving west from Steelhead Harborside you’ll find Steelhead Port Harbor. This is a visual feast, mixing so much in a glorious blend of steampunk, galleons, a kraken and more, all of which should delight anyone with a passion for SL photography or machinima. There are a number of commercial premises here, and what look to be various opportunities for rp in and around the water (and air) docks.
The southern regions making up Steelhead are perhaps my personal favourites: Steelhead St. Helens (complete with its own mountain – although not of the erupting variety!) and Steelhead Boomtown. These are wonderfully rural, with open spaces, photogenic outlooks and paths and trails to follow through some wonderful scenery. Watch out for the river monsters…
In referencing itself, the community states:
Steelhead boasts a tight-knit community of fine mad citizenry, mad scientists, mad girl geniuses, mad builders, mad furries, mad librarians, mad Timelords and sweet kittens among the very least of our society. (We’re not literally mad, more just crazy mad) From humans to elves, to wolves and dragons Steelhead hosts a wide variety of demographic citizens.
Steelhead is a themed community and do not enforce role play of any sort nor do we allow others visiting or residing to enforce role play upon each other whether they be visitors or residents. We lightly theme ourselves our actions and our housing to the era in which we live in (19th C American Steampunk Victorian Western) We try not to discriminate against anyone as we encourage diversity within the city.
It’s an active community, with events held throughout the week, as scheduled on the community website. Visitors receive a warm welcome, and are encouraged to explore. As a community, Steelhead offers parcels for rent, and during my explorations, I came across some that are presently available (some of them with amusing “ads” to go with them 🙂 ).
Steelhead is a great place to visit and explore and has some of the most instantly photogenic scenery and builds I’ve come across in SL.
All regions rated Moderate.