I’ve written about the region designs of Lokhe Angel Verlack (Jackson Verlack) since April 2015, when I first discovered one of his first iterations of Pandora Box of Dreams – the name he has largely used to denote the regions he has designed and run with his SL partner, Miza Cupcake Verlack (Mizaki).
Over the years, these designs have grown in complexity and vision, he and Miza have also moved from the Pandora Box of Dreams approach to design role-play regions inspired by the World of Darkness universe (see here and here) before returning once more to the Pandora Box of Dreams “brand” with region designs that have mixed rental accommodation with stunning places for visit and spend time, such as the former Pandora Resort, and more recently Namaste and Kamigami, both of which I visited in 2017 (see here and here).
Sadly, word came from Miza that Namaste and Kamigami will be closing on August 1st, 2018. In fact, Jackson has already started dismantling Kamigami. What’s more, it’s likely to be the last public region design we might be seeing from Jackson for a while.
The reason for the closure isn’t the hoary old devil of tier per-se – whilst offering rentals for people, Jackson and Miza have largely covered the cost of the region out of their own pocket. Rather, its a lack of footfall through the region. Despite frequent events, the opportunity to enjoy two very well-designed and captivating locales, the region has seen a steady decline in traffic which, sadly, has reached a point where Jackson and Miza feel they’d rather focus on more personal projects and things that give them enjoyment.
In this, they are far from alone: the truth is that such is the vastness of Second life and the constant popping-up of new regions and new places to visit, those places that offer a sense of longevity and comforting familiarity, unless located on the mainland, do become harder and harder to maintain when it comes to drawing a steady flow of traffic. Even with things like tier reduction (and depending on how that is passed on through land companies when it comes to rented regions), a point can so easily be reached where the effort in trying to maintain that flow and meeting the cost of keeping a region has to be put into perspective and a decision sometimes made.
I admit, I feel a little guilt here; as a Second Life travel blogger, I’m all too keen to hop to the “new” places and write about them, or hop back to those that are given a make-over every few months. It becomes all too easy to forget about those that are there, month-on-month and never overly changing, but offering a consistent beauty for all to enjoy. Perhaps this is something all of us who write about Second Life need to keep in mind, and consider looking back at some of the regions we’ve visited in the previous year that might not have changed in the intervening time, and just dropping a “reminder” note about them for readers who may not have had the chance to visit, or might be unaware of their presence.
In the meantime, the gradually disappearing Kamigami notwithstanding, there is still a little time before the region closes on August 1st, 2018, to visit Namaste and say farewell, and perhaps drop a note of thanks via IM or notecard to Lokhe and Miza for sharing their vision with us.
For my part, I hope this is not the last we’ve seen of Lokhe’s designs; he has amazing vision in creating special places, and my thanks to him and Miza for allowing us to share in them.
- Namaste and Kamigami (Hurricane, rated: Moderate)