At the start of April 2019 I reviewed the Water Horse Animesh horse – a horse that, unlike Bento horses, is not limited to having to be worn in order to be ridden – as it has its own skeleton, completely independent of an avatar, an Animesh horse can also be rezzed in-world, where it can wander, or ridden in the style of a vehicle, making it perfect for use both when riding, or as region décor.
However, the Water Horse model isn’t the only Animesh horse. Teegle, for example, are currently developing their own horse, which is currently in public beta – and in the interests of comparing the two, I recently picked one up and took it for a test drive. Err, ride.
Currently, the Teegle horse comes in two styles: a paint and a Hanoverian. The former might be seen as more suited to an American style of riding, and the later leaning towards more European riding, but the fact is that as both horses are supplied sans tack, you’re free to decide which you’d like, and then choose your preferred style of tack, or even swap riding tack depending on your mood.
The horse is supplied at two price points, which at the time of writing were: L$1,500 for the No Copy version, and L$6,000 for the copy version (allowing you to rez as many as you like). Again, note that these prices are purely for the horse, no riding tack is included; you can however ride them bareback. Tack will cost an additional L$750 from Teegle, although there are other suppliers. Other points worthy of note with the horses at both price points are functionally identical, and:
- You can set them to be ridden by yourself or, when rezzed in-world, by others.
- When rezzed in-world each horse can carry a rider and up to two passengers.
- The basic LI for a Teegle horse is 28LI. With riding tackle attached, this rises to 35 LI.
- The no Copy version come with a guarantee of automatic replacement if lost as a result of a bad region crossing, or broken as a result of incorrect editing. Replacements are delivered via the horse management HUD.
- Horses can be individually renamed.
- Retexturing is possible, but requires the purchase of texture packs at L$450, which include skin, mane and eye colour options.
- The wander option when horse is rezzed in-world, does not require Pathfinding to be enabled within a region.
Two HUDs – both of which are still under development at the time of writing – are supplied with each Teegle Animesh horse.
- A Management HUD, which:
- Allows the horse’s gender to be set.
- Includes a button that provides a chat link to a dedicated web page listing all Teegle pets you may have purchased. The last grind location the animal was recorded as being at, together with the date and time, is listed, allowing you to relocate a “lost” horse. A redeliver option is also provided here as well.
- A riding HUD, which provides:
- 4 different click-selectable riding speeds: walk, trot, canter, gallop. Riders can also move between these by tapping the UP arrow key (or W if WASD is set for avatar motion and the horse is being worn).
- 4 horse animations: spook, (horse jumps sideways nervously and looks around); buck, rear, and reward (rider leans forward and pats the horse).
- An autowalk function: set the horse walking in a straight line. The rider can look around, take snapshots, etc., or simply steer.
- Follow (rezzed horse only): the horse will automatically follow the named avatar.
- Lead (rezzed horse only): lead the horse via the halter when walking.
Riding the Horse
Before riding the horse, make sure any AO you have (scripted or client) is turned off to avoid any conflicts. Then either:
- Add it to your avatar from inventory as a worn attachment.
- Mouseover the horse in-world, right-click and select Ride.
The first option will add the horse to you, with you in the saddle (if attached to the horse); the second will place you in the saddle (if attached) of a rezzed horse. Note that if worn, you’ll need to the manually attach the riding HUD; if the horse is mounted while rezzed in-world, you’ll be asked if you’d like to accept the HUD, which then attaches automatically (note this is a slightly different HUD to the one in your inventory, as it includes the Lead and Follow options for the rezzed horse).
Movement is via the usual WASD / Arrow keys, with W / Up for forward motion, with double-taps advancing through the four speed options. Tapping the Down keys while moving forward will step back down through the riding speeds. When riding the horse from rezzed, the Down arrow will play a nice backwards walking animation.
Camera-wise, riding the horse from rezzed fixes the camera in a good position above and behind the horse, regardless of any camera offsets you may have set (not something seen with the Water Horse Animesh horse). Riding the horse from worn may leave the camera awkwardly positioned if you use custom camera offsets, the mousewheel and CTRL-Mousewheel generally fix this.
Passengers can ride with you simply by clicking the horse. The rider can then select who “drives” the horse via a left-click to display the menu, and then the Driver option (rider 1= the avatar in the saddle; rider 2 = the passenger directly behind the rider; rider 3 = rearmost passenger). Who has the reins is indicated via local chat. The same menu option is used to take back control.
Who can directly ride a Teegle Animesh horse when rezzed in-world is also set via the menu: left-click the horse, then Settings > Driver Perm. At the time of writing, the options were limited to Private (owner only) and Public (anyone), but I understand more granular options will be added.
Other Capabilities / Options
As the Teegle Animesh horse is still in development, it is hard to say what else might be included. However, some of the current additional capabilities include:
- Linden Water swim option: the left-click menu offers a Settings option to have the horse swim in deep enough Linden water, complete with a companion swimming animation for the rider (but not passengers).
- Flying option: you can set the horse to fly or disable flying (so no accidents when trying to jump an obstacle).
- Motion function: set the horse to physical (default), so it will respond to objects around it (useful for racing, when wandering in paddock, etc), or non-physical (useful for things like dressage).
- Set wander distance via chat.
- Rename function: Teegle horses can all be given their own name.
Adding Tack and Other Options
Riding tack by Teegle is easy to attach to the horse:
- Rez both horse and tack in world.
- With neither selected, right-click on the tack and selected edit.
- Press and hold the SHIFT key and then left-click on the horse to additionally select it.
- Click the Link button in the edit floater (arrowed, below).
- The tack will correctly orient itself and attach to the horse, as seen in the inset image, below.
To remove an attached item (e.g the saddle or entire riding tack):
- Rez your horse in-world.
- Left-click the horse for the menu.
- Click Unlink to display the Unlink menu.
- Use the numbered buttons to unlink the required items.
- Move your horse away from the unlinked objects and then delete them.
Comparison with the ~*WH~* Animesh Horse and Feedback
Comparisons with beta products and released products tends to be a little unfair, as the former can obviously change prior to release, with more options added. However, the table below provides a quick reference to some of the key features within the two horses that I think are relevant and directly comparable.
When looking at the two horses physically, the ~*WH*~ is clearly the large of the two (and comes with a size suitable for larger avatars), and potentially is slightly the more handsome.
Both have good riding options, and a set of good natural animations. when wandering / being ridden. The rider pose is perhaps a little superior with the ~*WH*~; I noticed my calves sit around the flank of the horse, rather than cutting into it, as happens with the Teegle. The wander anims with the ~*WH*~ are perhaps more varied, including as they do a grazing action. However, I think the Teegle, with its ear flicks and nostril flaring, has more of a sense of individual character about it.
What is appreciated with the Teegle is the ability to set the horse wandering without any reliance on Pathfinding. For those with their own region (bought or rented or on the Mainland), Pathfinding might not be an issue. However, such has been its reputation that large estates took to disabling it by default; thus for those with parcels on such estates, the Teegle could be preferable simply because it doesn’t require Pathfinding at all in order to wander.
The Teegle horse is also much better in dealing with the imperfections of mesh and physics interactions, showing none of the canting over issues the ~*WH*~ Animesh horse can at times exhibit. The swimming animation for Linden water is a nice touch, and again adds a nice dimension to the horse if you have somewhere to play with it (as I fortunately do).
However, the biggest deciding factor between the two is liable be price point. And while the Teegle’s might change between now and a full release, there is no denying it has a major edge: L$6,750 (including the cost of a Teegle saddle) for a copyable horse with “public” riding capabilities leaves it streets ahead of the ~*WH*~ at L$12,900. Similarly, for individual use, the L$2,250 price tag for the Teegle No Copy version + Teegle saddle makes sits easier on the purse / wallet than the ~*WH*~, even when group discounted to L$4,050.
Which would I buy, if I didn’t have either? Good question. I like both of them; each has its own pros and cons. But, the simple fact is that as someone living on an estate where Pathfinding is disabled, I’d likely plump for the Teegle – only this time, I’d go for the Copy version, rather than the No Copy, simply so I could have it trotting around at home and sitting in inventory ready to ride with I’m out and about 🙂 .
As noted, the Teegle is still beta, but you can pick it up in-world at the Teegle main store, where yo can also try the demo (available from the Copy version vendor board) and do your own comparison with the ~*WH~* if you like. Teegle Riding tack and texture kits can be purchased via the Teegle Marketplace store, but again, remember there are other options, if you prefer – check the Marketplace.