A walk through Legacy Ridge in Second Life

Legacy Ridge; Inara Pey, July 2016, on Flickr Legacy Ridge – click any image for full size

Legacy Ridge is described as a private residential community within Second Life, although it is open to public visits. A full region, the design is largely the work of Isa (Isa Messioptra) and Cipher (Ciphertazi Wandin), the talents behind Crestwick Island, a destination I last wrote about a little over a year ago, at the start of June 2015.

Given Isa and Ciph are involved in Legacy Ridge, you might expect it to be somewhat special in look and feel – and if you were to do so, you’d be absolutely right. This is a beautifully imagined and designed coastal hamlet, tucked into a fjord-like lnlet cutting deep between tall mountain peaks which hunch protectively around it as if sheltering it from the rest of the world.

Legacy Ridge; Inara Pey, July 2016, on Flickr Legacy Ridge

A visitor’s journey begins at the welcome centre, down near the north-facing waterfront. The latter is without the expected beach; instead the grassy land sit protected from the waters of the bay be a strong of boulders which sharply define the waterfront and give every impression of having been hauled down from the mountains and placed as they are for precisely this purpose. Behind them sits a tarmac parking lot and the 50’s style Lucy’s Diner.

The road from the diner offers short run to the east, passing and ancient fishing boat which has been left well and truly high and dry, before petering out, a rough track completing the route to a small dock built out over the water. Southwards from the diner, the road climbs a short incline to reach a little row of shops sitting with their backs against a sheer cliff and looking out over a children’s playground to the bay beyond.

Legacy Ridge; Inara Pey, July 2016, on Flickr Legacy Ridge

A junction marks the end of the shops, offering a choice of routes: continue eastward, and you’ll arrive at another parking lot, this one sitting before the local motel. Turn left, however, and the road will lead you onwards and upwards to a further junction. This is denoted by the abrupt end of the tarmac surface as it is crossed by an unpaved road pointing west and east. It’s entirely up to you which route you take from here, as both will lead you around the rest of the region, climbing ever higher in the process as you pass houses cosily nestled under hill and tree.

It is this aspect which gives Legacy Ridge a very unique look and feel. Walking (or cycling) up and around the tracks, there is a real impression of moving along an old coastal road, winding slowly away from the little hamlet below and to some new destination “inland”. To the west and north, the land falls away, offering views out over the water. To the east and south the land rises to a series of rounded peaks, and while these don’t blend seamlessly with the mountains of the sim surround, they do nevertheless give an immersive feeling of being the foothills to them, as they naturally hide the tall peaks from view as one winds passes directly below them.

Legacy Ridge; Inara Pey, July 2016, on Flickr Legacy Ridge

The majority of the houses up in the hills were empty at the time of my visit, but they are defined as being for private occupancy, therefore investigation is not recommended, as requested within the region rules. Other than this, Legacy Ridge is open to exploration and offers some excellent opportunities for photography, and is perfectly completed with a natural sound scape, so be sure to have local sounds enabled. Should you enjoy your visit, do please consider a donation towards the region’s upkeep.

SLurl Details

Project Bento User Group update 17 with audio

Project Bento – extending the SL avatar skeleton
Project Bento – extending the SL avatar skeleton

The following notes and audio were taken from the weekly Bento User Group meeting, held on Thursday, June 30th at 13:00 SLT at the the Hippotropolis Campfire Circle . For details on the meeting agenda, please refer to the Bento User Group wiki page.

Note that this update is not intended to offer a full transcript of the meeting, nor does it present the discussion points in chronological order. Rather, it represents the core points of discussion, grouped together by subject matter were relevant / possible, whilst maintaining the overall context of the meeting.

Bento Project Viewer and Moving Forward

The project viewer updated to version, on Thursday June 30th. This update includes small tweaks to the avatar skeleton file, but no structural changes, and provides fixes for:

  • SL-426 missing string for left pec, right pec attachments
  • SL-398 issues with system eyelashes
  • MAINT-6380 vertical flicker with some mesh avatars.

With the exception of the facial bone / slider work (see below) the focus is very much on getting the viewer to a release candidate status, and the project as a whole released. The emphasis with the viewer is on fixing Bento specific bugs, rather than viewer bugs which pre-date project, together with anything which has a major impact on the project as a whole. To this end, a request has been made that anyone who has found an issue or problem they have not reported to either raise a bug report and / or raise it for discussion in the Bento forum thread.

"OK, who brought the marshmallows?" - the gathering of the Bento Imps at the Hippotropolis camp site for the Bento meeting
“OK, who brought the marshmallows?” – the gathering of the Bento Imps at the Hippotropolis camp site for the Bento meeting

Height Issues / Ground Sits

As noted in my Bento #15 report, there are still some issues around avatars standing on / in / over the terrain when seen from different viewers (a person can appear to be standing on the ground in their own view, but knee-deep in the ground to someone else).

The issue appears to lie it the complexity of the information that is being handled for the avatar, and updates between the simulator and viewers not necessarily arriving in the right order, and Vir hopes the Lab will be able to dig into things some more in the hope of improving how the calaculations are handledthem out.

Facial Bones and Sliders

The forum thread discussion on the facial bones and sliders (see my Bento #16 update) has been continuing. A proposal, as requested at the time, has been put forward, and the promised test viewer was made available on June 27th, together with three new test skeletions (bento human male, bento human female and bento angel). See also Vir’s forum thread post for more information.

Matrice Laville has been trying to implement many of the suggestions put forward on the issue, and ideally the Lab would like to get all suggestions / changes wrapped up by the end of week #27.

Jaw Angle Slider

In terms of the jaw bone angle slider in particular, there was a further healthy discussion over where the problems lay and how best to deal with them. For clarity, the audio of the discussion is given below.

Mel Vanbeeck, vir and Matrice Laville discuss the jaw bone angle issue

Pros and Cons of adding a new bone, and the possibility of perhaps doing so in the future

The Exodus of the Imps: some of us exercising a region crossing as a part of the pile-on test
The Exodus of the Imps: some of us exercising a region crossing as a part of the pile-on test

Scaling Wings and Tails to Avatar Height

Currently, the wing and tail bones are not adjusted when changing an avatar’s height via the appearance sliders.  This is because the bones can be re-purposed for other uses, and having them automatically adjust according to adjustments made to an avatar’s height may not always be optimal.

It has been suggested that the hind bones and wings should have their own sliders, but this has been considered outside the scope for Bento, where the emphasis is enabling the existing sliders to be used with the Bento bones as and where they are deemed particularly useful.

In terms of the wings and tail, the suggestion is that they not be hooked into the height slider, but are left as is to allow for the possible addition of dedicated sliders into the avatar LAD file at some point in the future.

Other Items

Pile-on Test

The meeting was abbreviated to allow for a pile-on test to check simulator performance and region crossings with large numbers of avatars. The results will likely be reviewed at the next meeting.

Avastar 2.0 Alpha 3 Release

The Avastar team have issued an alpha update specifically for Bento. Full details can be found in the release notes for the changes and known issues.

Next Meeting

There many be a Lab internal meeting which conflicts with the next meeting. Check the Bento User Group wiki page for the meeting status nearer the date.