Ravenport Reclaimed occupies half of a Full region with the additional private island Land Impact bonus. Designed by Raven Banrion (RavenStarr), it presents a city in decay, a place overcome by time and falling into collapse and nature reclaims it.
Post-apocalyptic region designs are not exactly uncommon in Second Life – I’ve covered more than a few in these pages – but Ravenport offers something that is just a little bit different. Exactly where it might be or what happened goes unmentioned; instead, it is left to the imaginations of those who visit to reach a conclusion as to what may have happened; all we are told is that it is a place that is “wiped out of human life”.
These are words that can be interpreted a number of ways, from humans having been somehow eliminated from the city as a result of physical elimination in some way, through to the inhabitants having been forced to flee the city due to natural or other disaster. But whatever the cause, it is clear that human life departed the setting in a hurry and has been gone a while: Broken buildings and roads are well on the way to being lost amidst the returning greenery, vehicles have long since become rusting hulks and the harbour has been deserted for so long that the waters there are choked by vegetation, one of the remaining vessels within it listing to the point where it is no longer seaworthy, and another other fast becoming a home to vines and greenery and a home for waterfowl.
Greetings, survivor. If you are receiving this message, all human life in Ravenport is gone….
– The greeting given to visitors arriving at Ravenport
The waterfowl are not the only wildlife to be found within the setting; while humans may appear to have deserted Ravenport, animals have not. They roam almost every street and road, their mix suggesting that they may have all once been gathered within a local zoo: elephant and rhino from Africa mix with North American jaguar and black bear, while Australian kangaroo can also be found and seals occupy the docks, keeping away from the sharks in the water.
As deer, raccoon, squirrel and even turkey can also be found, together with the styling of the vehicles, there is a hint this might be a place somewhere in the North Americas – but again, I’ll leave that up to you to decide.
However, the animals are not alone in the city. Despite the landing point greeting not everyone has completely deserted Ravenport. Within the ruins of the city’s theatre lie signs that humans still gather on occasion and an attempt has been made to supply electrical power for a DJ’s deck and lighting – so someone appears to be prepared to party on from time to time. Outside of the theatre sits what might at first seem to be a hint as to what might have befallen the city to cause its desertion.
This comes in the form of a Fat Man nuclear bomb that has partially cratered itself directly outside the front of the theatre – although the fact it has not detonated indicates it is not itself responsible for the city’s condition. Nor, given the healthy presence of the wildlife and greenery, would it seem that a nuclear disaster has been directly responsible for the situation; so perhaps the “bomb” is merely an artistic statement.
Those exploring the city will find other possible explanations for the city being left to its own decay. The fence outside of one of the buildings, for example, has a biohazard warning hanging from it. Inside another building sits a figure in a hazmat, a bleak warning painted on the wall over it. These and other elements both add to the mystery of Ravenport and allow visitors add to their own stories around what may have happened here.
Rich in detail and finished with a soundscape that reflects the wildlife that wait the cameras of photographers, Ravenport Reclaimed makes of an engaging photo-rich visit. My thanks to Shawn for the landmark.
- Ravenport Reclaimed (Fairhill, rated Moderate)