Waterfalls of Dreams in Second Life

Waterfalls of Dreams, January 2020 – click any image for full size

Waterfalls of Dreams recently popped up in the Editor’s Picks section of the Destination Guide, and has prompted a lot of interest from visitors as a result – including from Caitlyn and I. A homestead region designed by Jeramy McMahon, it is around two years old and offers something of a neo-classical look that those of us who have been in Second Life a fair while might find particularly reminiscent.

A place intended for romance throughout and with a fantasy  / fae lean, a good proportion of the region utilises prim builds – the docks, the raised dance floors and walkways overlooking the region from the east, the various pavilions and floating islands. In turn, these use shine on surfaces rather than materials and textures. All of these, together with the use of sculpties, give the region a sense of “old school” Second Life history.

Waterfalls of Dreams, January 2020

Which is not to say mesh is not present within the region, just that its use has been minimised. This is a conscious decision on Jeramy’s part to “reduce lag”. How well this works is perhaps debatable  – lag itself is a highly subjective subject, given the volume of non-SL influences that can affect it; but it is an interesting approach to take. I will say I found my own experience in three visits to the region no better nor worse, performance-wise, than when visiting many other regions, prim or mesh in nature.

However, for me, what makes a visit to Waterfalls of Dreams attractive is that sense it being a place built upon that historic style and approach to design; one that has in some ways passed. It offers a deep sense of nostalgia and a sense of history, all the way through to the use of pose balls within some of the seating.

Waterfalls of Dreams, January 2020

The landing point is located down at the harbour, which itself offers something of a faint echo of the prim docks in Nautilus – although those docks are more Greco-Roman in feel. A teleport board here offers the way up to the elevated dance floors, while a Teagle horse rezzer sits close by for those who fancy a ride around the region’s lowlands, or a balloon ride located on the far side of the piers presents the opportunity for an aerial view of the region.

Paths wind around the lowlands, leading to various points of interest – pavilions offering places to sit and  / or cuddle, statues to admire, and rivers of flowers to roam amongst. The waterfalls of the region’s title tumble from the cliffs behind the high dance floors to feed the waterways that also wind through the region. Their presence is augmented by falls tumbling from the more distant mountains of the sim surround (although issues of alpha blending can leave these bleeding through the sculpts of the region’s trees, requiring a considered use of edit linked and derender when taking photos under certain lighting).

Waterfalls of Dreams, January 2020

The dance floors are watched over by two huge angel-like figures standing to the north and south of the high walkways. The dance areas are themselves split between two levels, a large blocky tower sitting to the east behind them forming a bath house that in turn holds aloft a large crouched angel under a domed roof. However, this is not the tallest structure in the region; that honour goes to a great tower rising to the north-west. Reached via teleport board from the dance floors, it offers places to sit and to pass the time with a loved one or for the adventurous, the chance to fly around the region da Vinci’s glider via the rezzer.

A flair for the exotic is also offered within the region through the use of elements by Elicio Ember and Noke Yuitza. There presence is few, which makes coming across them all the more effective; Elicio’s rune stones in particular give a certain air of mystery and suggestion of fae that is well in keeping with the overall tone of the region and its statues whilst also offering an otherworldly aspect to the setting that adds to its depth.

Waterfalls of Dreams, January 2020

An unusual and engaging location with opportunities for dance, rest and photography.

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