A closer look at the Linden Fantasy Homes and their sub-continent

Linden Homes Fantasy Theme

The Sub-continent of the new Fantasy theme of Premium Membership Linden Homes started coming on-stream on Thursday, August 12th, with an initial three regions being release, those with more being made available from the 13th onwards.

These new Homes have generated a lot of interest since there initial unveiling at the SL18B event in June, 2021. As indicated during Patch Linden’s Meet the Lindens session, these homes not only have their own styling, they are set within regions that have very different landscaping to the rest of Bellisseria, together with a custom ambient environment across all of the regions, which includes seasonal variations to go with the passage of the year.

All of this being the case, the decision was made to keep the Fantasy homes to their own sub-continent, separate from, but still a part of (in terms of naming and location) Bellisseria. As such, the new regions ley south of the Bellisseria extension that initially housed the Log Home theme, and eastwards of the Victoria Homes extension that allowed Bellisseria (with the aid of additional houseboat regions) to connect to Jeogeot. This position gives a fair amount of room for southward expansion, should it be required.

The new sub-continent, nestled south and east of Bellisseria “proper”, and east of Jeogeot

The theme encompasses four primary styles of home which, as I’ve previously described, are:

  • Amberbrooke: a large, open-plan central room with stairs to the upper level and front and rear access, flanked by two additional rooms. Upstairs are three rooms, with the central room featuring a balcony overlooking the rear of the property.
  • Mistbrooke: a large, single-level house with central entrance hall flanked by two rooms on either side, the two rearmost of which each provide access to a small terrace / patio sitting between the wings of the house.
  • Rosebrooke: central entrance hall, flanked by a large room to the right with access to the rear of the property, and a smaller room to the left. Stairs from the hall provide access to a landing with a room to either side, each with skylights.
  • Stonebrooke: a turreted entranceway provides access to a large main room with access to the rear of the property and further access to an inner hall / room that in turn leads to three further rooms.
The new Linden Homes Fantasy Theme – Amberbrooke

At the time I wrote about these style, I speculated whether these might also be offered in open plan variants as well, as happened with the Chalet Homes – and this was confirmed by Patch. Whilst the initial release will be of the the styles noted above, their equivalent open-plan variants will, I believe be:

  • Angelspell: a variant of the Amberbrooke, which combines the large central room with one of the two flanking rooms to provide a large ground-floor space with a second room to one side. Upstairs, a wall has been removed to provide a large landing / open room¬† with balcony access, whilst retaining the rooms on either side of it.
  • Moonspell: a version of the Mistbrooke, with a single large L-shaped room, and a single separate room in one of the rear wings.
  • Ragespell: a variant of the Rosebrooke, presenting a large open-plan ground floor room with stairs and access to the rear aspect, a single ground-floor side room, and upstairs a single large room accessed directly from the stairs, and a smaller side room.
  • Steepell: a version of the Stornebrooke, again with a single large room off of the turreted entrance, and a smaller front room.
Linden Homes Fantasy Theme: the interior of the Moonspell, the open-plan variant of the Mistbrooke

In my original piece on this theme, I critiqued it for being a little too “English Cotswolds meets Lord of the Rings”. in form, and felt that – accepting the unique ambient environment (that tends to make itself felt more at night) – this theme was more tinkering at the edge of fantasy ideas rather than embracing them. In response to that comment, a couple of people noted that as they are, these homes occupy a comfortable middle-ground. Their general styling and environment means they are likely to appeal to Fantasy lovers whilst being reserved enough so that those seeking somewhere that is comfortably “different” and which does not belabour the “fantasy” element might also find appealing – and that’s a fair point to make.

When previewing the theme, Patch Linden indicated that some means needed to be found to allow passage between the rest of Bellisseria and the Fantasy sub-continent without actually physically adjoining the regions. At the time he suggested that some form of mystical teleport portals or similar might be used to waft people from one to the other. Placed within the community areas of the various Bellisseria themes, something like this would actually work. Currently, however, the selected method of reaching the new continent without using a direct teleport is on or over the water – a channel has been set-up linking Rigamarole to the new sub-continent. From here, one can either fly, or use the rezzing point if they wish to use a suitable vehicle to make the trip.

Linden Homes Fantasy ThemeBut route is not all plain sailing / flying: head away from the Log Theme coast and the shy darkens, particle clouds pepper the air, lightning arcs and rolling waves churn (well, as effectively as they can in SL!) whilst flotsam and jetsam float on the water and sharks await the unwary. It is all very The Fantastic Journey-ish, but it also works, as beyond the storm, you emerge into glowing skies and “calm waters”, with the fantasy realm sitting before you (although the bay in which you arrive could perhaps do with some TLC). I didn’t note any similar passages on the west side of the sub-continent, but I’m assuming they may come in time, together with a community centre for the new theme, which a certain Garden Mole whispered to me would also be coming…

It will be interesting to see what kind of take-up there is for these homes. At the time of writing, pockets of 15-20 avatars were popping up on various regions within the sub-continent. I suspect those who enjoy home-hopping and like to try out the new styles as they arrive will be keen to try things out. I’m also curious as to how many who have thus far resisted a move from the current Linden Home might be swayed by this environment – or indeed, how many might be persuaded to take a newer-style of Linden Home in general, now another Theme has arrived. Certainly, I understand that things have now reached a point where there are now sufficient Linden Homes to ensure that supply of most styles can in general keep pace with the demand.

The Linden Home Fantasy Theme

Anyway. The Fantasy Theme is here, and the layout of the regions strongly suggests more are to come (and the sub-continent will hopefully get a coastline over time). So if you’re interested, go take a look. Or even if you’re not, you can still look at the Map and play, “spot the franchise / series / mythology” with the region names ūüėÄ .

Links and SLurls

SL18B: A look at the Linden Homes Fantasy Theme preview

The Linden Homes Fantasy Theme preview at SL18B

Note: the images here do not show the intended EEP environment for the fantasy theme. They have been taken purely to show the house designs themselves. I will have images reflective of the Fantasy homes and their new sub-continent utilising the correct environment lighting when the Fantasy theme becomes available. 

As a part of the opening of SL18B, Patch Linden announced the next Premium Membership Linden Homes theme will be Fantasy, and a preview area opened within the celebration regions, giving people a chance to see the new theme ahead of its release later this year.

Fantasy has been a common request for a new Linden Homes theme, and the new theme is to address this call. In keeping with the majority of the “new” Linden Homes themes, the houses occupy 1024 square metre parcels, and the theme appears to comprise four styles, as described below – but please note it has been indicated that:

  • The interior layouts may change between the preview and the release.
  • This theme is to include “special features” not previously seen in Linden Homes – but these will not be revealed until Patch’s Lab Gab session on Tuesday, June 22nd (unless he spills the beans at the Leadership session on Monday, June 21st!).
Amberbrooke

The four styles are:

  • Amberbrooke: a large, open-plan central room with stairs to the upper level and front and rear access, flanked by two additional rooms. Upstairs are three rooms, with the central room featuring a balcony overlooking the rear of the property.
  • Mistbrooke: a large, single-level house with central entrance hall flanked by two rooms on either side, the two rearmost of which each provide access to a small terrace / patio sitting between the wings of the house.
  • Rosebrooke: central entrance hall, flanked by a large room to the right with access to the rear of the property, and a smaller room to the left. Stairs from the hall provide access to a landing with a room to either side, each with skylights.
  • Stonebrooke: a turreted entranceway provides access to a large main room with access to the rear of the property and further access to an inner hall / room that in turn leads to three further rooms.

While it is purely speculative on my part, I wonder if these homes might also follow in the footsteps of the Chalet theme, with each style offered both with complete interiors and in a more open style variants for people to create rooms of their own.

Mistbrooke
As it is, and again given the interiors are not finalised, the Mistbrooke would appear a little cumbersome in layout – the only way to get to the rearmost rooms in the house (and indeed, access the rear terrace / patio) is to traipse through the rooms they adjoin.¬† Some might not find this especially enamouring, depending on the uses to which they put the intervening room. Given the hallway overlooks said terrace / patio, I’m surprised the window it contains is not actually a doorway.

In terms of overall design, the Fantasy Homes could be described as “the Cotswolds meets Lord of the Rings”. True, these are are not faced in stone (at least for the preview), but on the whole their general appearance (ignoring the skylight motif and fretwork over entranceways) wouldn’t seem too out of place if dropped into a Wiltshire village.

Rosebrooke

It is the fretwork that pretty much carries the “fantasy” theme (along with the “Linden typical” approach the the general landscaping (twisted and gnarled trees, crystals thrusting out the the ground together with giant mushrooms). This fretwork and the skylight window motif do give the houses a lean towards “elven / Lord of the Rings”, but to me on this first look – and granted I know nothing about the “special features”, so may well have to eat my words later – the overall designs feel as if they are tinkering with the fantasy theme, rather than embracing it.

Truth be told, wandering / camming the region left me asking, “where are the rounded doorways? Why not something with a little more of a fantasy edge to it such as homes with open-sided entranceways and halls leading to rooms that are somewhat more enclosed?” and so on. However, and in¬† fairness, I can also recall the original Linden Homes fantasy theme came under heavy fire back in 2009 for being too other-worldly (/Lord of the Rings-ish) and thus seen as having “limited appeal”, so a more staid approach might be for the better.

Stonebrooke

As it is, much of the initial reaction on the forums has been positive, and it is fair to say that in not going “all out” on the fantasy theme, these homes could find favour among both fantasy lovers and those who are not so heavily fantasy oriented, but want a home that is just that little bit different without being completely “outlandish” to their way of thinking.

Either way, the preview region will be open for viewing throughout SL18B, and I’ll doubtless have more on this theme down the road.

Modding a Linden Stilt Home

My Linden Stilt Home on an evening …

One of the things I like doing in SL is messing around with houses and homes, kitbashing and modding – as I’ve often yabbered on about in these pages. This fiddling has also included those Linden Homes I’ve utilised, again as I’ve tended to record here as well, as a part of my general coverage of Linden Homes in general.

I currently have an over-the-water Stilt Home, to which I applied a modest amount of modding to produce something a little more individual. However, the release of the Chalet style of Linden Home with its open-plan variants of each house style got me thinking about doing something more extensive by way of mods,  notably with the Tortuga style of Stilt Home, the single-floor, largely open-plan layout of which just cries out to be played with.

So, over the past couple of days I’ve been fiddling around with ideas and looking at what might be done with the design.

Now of course, given the time the Stilt Homes have been out and available, there are likely a lot of conversion / add-on / bolt-on kits for this Theme that can be had through the Marketplace Рjust as there are for the Houseboats, et al Рand these can provide the easiest solution. But fiddling for yourself can result in something far more personal, particularly if, like me, you having a rezzing system such as Ydille’s Multi Scene Rezzer & Multi Scene Erazer Pro V5 (reviewed here) in which to store your layouts so you can swap back and forth between them whenever you wish.

For those unfamiliar with it, the Tortuga Stilt Home is a single-floor design, with a large primary room and single separate room to the front. That large room, split somewhat by a rectangular arch is simply ideal for modding. In fact, that’s where I started: putting in a “proper” dividing wall and door within the existing arch.

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However, rather than put in a solid wall, which would look odd given the wooden trim around the archway, I opted to put in two wood-framed windows and matching sliding door. To achieve this, I used the 2 x 6¬† windowsfrom the ER Sunroom Windows Mesh Multipane kit by Ecko Riven (EckoRiven). At L$200 full permissions, this is an excellent and flexible builder’s kit that I’ve used in a number of my own conversions and scratch-builds. These I rotated through 90¬į to stand them vertically, with a third offset to form the central sliding door for which I wrote a simple script – if you’re not up to doing so yourself, take a look on the Marketplace, there’s bound to be a script there that will work for you.

With the “window” sections linked, a simple room divider of this nature weighs-in at just 3LI. And as a side note, given the additional doors provided by LL for use with the Stilt Homes come in at 3 LI apiece, I opted to duplicate my “sliding door” and use it for the single additional room in the Tortuga, changing the “glass” texture on it for something more “frosted” as I use that room as a bathroom. So, for 1 LI more than a supplied Stilt Home door, I gained a room divider and two doors.

As I said, a simple solution, splitting the Tortuga along obvious lines to provide a large “main” room space and a “bedroom” space. But for me it was just the start – the “main” room still felt a little too big, so I opted to split that as well.

Again, this was most easily done by following the shape of the house. With it’s “stepped” design around the front door, it’s easy to put in additional walls to create a “vestibule” area between the front door and the rest of the house. So as not to have this feel too claustrophobic, I extended 2 solid walls part-way across the space, then created a rectangular archway in the same style of the one built-in to the house. This allowed me to again add elements from the ER Sunroom Windows kit to keep things feeling somewhat open between “vestibule” and main room, particularly as I didn’t add a door.

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With the divider mentioned above linked to the new wall sections, I’d taken what was effectively a 2-room house and split it into a 4-room space.

From here it was just a matter of adding wall d√©cor and other bits to the basic layout to give a more homely feel. Things like rugs, pictures on the wall, light fittings, and so on – even the fireplace – were all¬† carefully linked into the overall design, helping to reduce the overall LI (see the notes at the end of Modding a house in Second Life: tips and¬†pointers for info on what to look for when linking items like this if you’re unfamiliar with the technique, and what to avoid).

With an exterior chimney added to the exterior and in line with the fireplace, I had a complete interior for the house at 42 LI, sans actual furniture and kitchen fittings, but including a lighting system that follows the parcel’s EEP Day Cycle. The completed space offers a vestibule (which I used as a “home office”), a large open-plane lounge / kitchen / dining space in the main room, and a good-sized bedroom space.

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Nor is this the only option.

For example, if you’d like to keep more of the open plan feel to the house and don’t mind having a smaller bedroom, you can put a divider across the smaller section at the back of the house, creating a bedroom space that still has access to the rear deck, thus leaving you with a through room, allowing you have a separate kitchen, if you prefer or whatever else takes your fancy (in My case, room for my baby grand piano!).

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You could even, if you wanted, split this part of the Tortuga two ways, to provide an additional room between the “bedroom” and “bathroom” (if that’s how you use them) – but to me, this felt again very claustrophobic and can can leave the camera on the wrong side of one of the added walls / dividers.

I’ve admittedly not looked at the other Stilt Home styles to see just how amenable their interiors are to a similar degree of customisation – but I doubt the Santiago really gives much scope given its interior design, whilst both the Lauderdale and Havana both off some room for fiddling in the larger ground from room found in each. I might get around to having a play at some point, but to be honest, I think the Tortuga really is the most flexible of the four styles for those who like playing with things.

Possibly Useful Links

Lab announces Linden Homes Chalet Theme released

The Linden Home Chalet Theme and a public space

Tuesday, March 30th saw Patch Linden announce the release of the Chalet style of Linden Homes for Premium members.

First unveiled in December 2020, this latest style of Linden Home has something of an Alpine edge to it, with the official forum post noting:

Chalet theme homes are modelled after stylized European alpine wood-timbered houses (fachwerkhaus), of a type that you might expect to find in mountains of Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Slovenia, Croatia, or northern Italy. These are not rustic buildings, but contemporary homes ready for 21st century living.
The Linden Home Chalet Theme and a public space

As with the majority of the Linden Homes releases, these houses come with 1024 sq metre parcels (only the Campers and Trailers have thus far diverted from this footprint size). However, unlike previous Home releases, there are effectively eight variants that are available for rezzing, something Patch originally indicated to me when I previewed the theme back in December.

In short, the the chalets come in four exterior styles, each one of which is offered with either a “complete” set of rooms, or an “open plan” layout with minimal pre-built internal walls. The latter is intended to offer those who like designing their homes more flexibly with interior design. Each of the eight variants is distinguished by a unique name:

  • Matterhorn: 2 large ground floor rooms, linked by a rear hallway with back door, and a central front hallway / reception area with stairs to the upper floor. This has two large rooms, one with gabled windows to the front and rear, the other with large windows to one side aspect.
    • Moritzburg: open plan version of the Matterhorn: fully open plan on the lower floor other than three walls supporting the central stairway. A single separate upper floor room with large open-plan space at the top of the stairs.
  • Alpenrose: a two-storey house with offset front entrance with vestibule, three ground floor rooms, one with a side door to the garden. Stairs from the entrance hall provide access to three upstairs rooms, each with windows to a side aspect and either the front or rear.
    • Albus: open-plan version of the Alpenrose, featuring a single large lower-floor area partially divided by a stairway supporting wall. Two upper floor rooms, one with door door access from the stairs.
Linden Homes Chalet Theme – the path and road leading to an inebriated rodent ūüôā
  • Reizend: a single-storey cottage-style chalet with two open-plan rooms, the front porch opening directly into one of them, with doorways serving the remaining two rooms.
    • ¬†Ravensburg: open-plan version of the Reizend offering a single individual room and a large open-plan space combining the remaining three, with partial dividing walls.
  • Edelweiss: a two-storey house with front entrance to one side serving the stairs to the upper floor and giving access to the single open-plan ground floor room, which also includes a side door to the garden. A landing upstairs provides access to two bedrooms, each with widows to a front or rear aspect, and to the side aspects of the house.
    • Eikelen: open-plan version of the Edelweiss with the same ground-floor design, with and open-plan, door-less approach to the upper floor spaces.

The setting for the Chalets isn’t “Alpine” mountainous, but it is ruggedly hilly with plenty of changes in elevation that keep the landscape rolling. The roods are paved, with rez zones (where available) clearly marked. The footpaths are finished in red brick and a nice contrast to the concrete road surface, while the coniferous flora helps with the higher altitude feel to the regions.

Die Betrunkene Maus

Those who visited the demo region back in December may recall it featuring a windmill – and several examples are scattered about the new Chalet regions, together with open public spaces with parasol shaded seating. Those fancying a more noisy time out might try a visit to Die Betrunkene Maus (“The Drunken Mouse”), the new community centre and hostelry for the Chalets. When I dropped in, Xeno Mole was suitably attired in a feathered cap and giving it a bit of wellie on an accordion.

With the regions stretching up to Satori, the Chalet homes form the bridge between that continent and Bellisseria, forming the much requested contiguous access to the major southern continents – Satori, Sansara, and Jeogeot, with Bellisseria sitting in the middle.

The Chalets and their regions are an attractive addition to the Linden Homes range – each iteration of the homes tends to be an evolution, and I particularly like the idea of adding open-plan variants of designs into the mix – hopefully we’ll see more of this in the remaining themes that will be appearing through the year.

Linden Homes Chalet Theme

But that said, I have to admit these aren’t for me – although I’ve nothing against the theme or style. It’s just that it took me a fair while to finally make the jump from a Houseboat to a Stilt Home, so I’m not about to leap elsewhere!

As with other Linden Homes, the Chalets can be obtained by Premium account holders through their secondlife.com dashboard and the Linden Homes page available from it. Those who do fancy one of the Chalets are asked to note the following request from Patch:

As a general reminder and to help facilitate the release process, please do not play ‚Äúgame of homes‚ÄĚ by taking and releasing homes during the initial phases of launch. Also it is extremely helpful to refrain from rapidly switching through different home styles to give the regions time to settle and not overload the back-end systems.
We hope everyone enjoys the latest additions to the Belliseria continent and community!

A personal look at the Linden Stilt Homes in Second Life

My over-the-water Stilt Home parcel at Bellisseria, with the Tortuga style house rezzed and furnished

Back when I previewed the Linden Homes Stilt House theme, and again when the theme was released at the end of 2020, I mentioned it was the first theme that might tempt me away from the Houseboat theme, which has tended to always win-out against the subsequent Linden Home releases in terms of desirability.

While swapping homes wasn’t high on my priority list, I have to admit that the temptation to just give the Stilt Homes a try had been growing over the Christmas break. And so, while it did cause no small amount of anxiety – my Houseboat location was really very good – at the start of the week, I decided to make the swap, trying for an over-the-water Stilt Home.

Obtaining one took a little time – Stilt Homes-are obviously popular, being new, and the over-the-water version particularly so (Stilt Homes are offered individually as over-the-water; with pier or on land variants on the Linden Homes selection page). But careful refreshing within the page throttle limit meant I was able to eventually pick one up.

My Linden Stilt Home parcel with the Havana style house with moorings I’ve added myself

When previewing the houses, I had been somewhat swayed towards the two-storey designs (Lauderdale and Santiago). However, after re-familiarising myself with all four styles, I actually found the Havana and Tortuga better suited to my tastes, providing the best value (in my view) between living space and available water in the parcel for mooring boats, and betted options for interior customisation, having very good sized rooms (the Tortuga in particular).

Both styles are 3-roomed designs, with the Tortuga offering the slightly greater interior space in the form of two large through-rooms and a smaller room, while the Havana presents a central front-to-back through room flanked by a smaller room on either side. Both designs have a large, split-level rear deck that gives plenty of scope for sun decks and moorings.

Havana interior: the main room gives plenty of room for expression

While I cannot compare it directly with¬† Camper / Trailer, Victorian or Log Home themes, the Content Creation Pack for the Stilt Homes offers a somewhat greater range of options than the pack for the Houseboats, with furniture plants, textures, useful colour matching guides and other little goodies than might be put to good use. I was a little disappointed no corner posts were offered to go with the additional deck railings, or that there was no bi-fold door that might be used to split the Tortuga’s two through-rooms, but these are not exactly hard-to-overcome “shortfalls”.

Although there are already add-on kits for the Stilt Homes a-plenty on the Marketplace, I much prefer building / kitbashing, and the Tortuga with its big rooms immediately attracted me with the potential for adding my own features. So much so, that I spent several hours playing with different ideas in both rooms!

The Tortuga’s large deck area can be used for boat moorings without it feeling crowded – although admittedly, I’ve thus far minimalised d√©cor and furnishings( a simple pergola, suitably sized, shading a couple of rocking chairs and some planters with flower to break things up

In the end, I went with the simplest approach: a free-standing “room divider wall” that splits the largest room in the Tortuga into two without actually dominating the space or looking out-of-place. One side of this became my “living room” overlooking the rear decks, with the divider itself neatly providing space for a fireplace (with added chimney jutting from the roof above!). This then allowed me to use the “front” part of the room as a kitchen / the dining area, with the long interior wall ideally suited for placing kitchen units, while the width of the room meant I could include a kitchen island, again naturally breaking up the floor space quite naturally.

While the Havana’s large main room could be similarly broken up, I found that with a little careful placement of bits, this isn’t really necessary; I was again able to include living area, dining area and kitchen comfortably into it. With the addition of decking and steps to¬† moorings outside the front of both (and the use of one side of the Tortuga’s deck), I have been able to provide ample space for mooring those boats I want to have rezzed (all of them otherwise sitting in my vehicle rezzer until I want them).

I’ve deliberately kept furnishings and d√©cor on the decks of both the Havana and Tortuga to a minimum, the former having a free-standing pergola with large sofa, etc., and the latter a pergola and shades directly adjoining the back of the house (thus helping to shade the living room from the Sun) and a couple of rocking chairs¬† I may admittedly play with both decks a little more in the future, but for now, that’s all I really need.

I like the large main room of the Tortuga particularly amenable to being made a comfortable living space – plenty of room for a kitchen, dining area and lounge space – and even a fireplace to act as a natural room divider

As noted earlier, giving up my Houseboat did give me a moment of anxiety after I’d let it go, but over the last 3+ days I’ve become more settled with my decision; the Tortuga has been proving to be a very comfortable and flexible living space (even if only as a second home when Isla Caitinara isn’t available), and it is very likely I’ll end up saving several internal layouts of furnishings, etc., into my personal rezzer, just as I did with the Houseboat. I’m also admittedly fortunate that, like my old Houseboat, the parcel I’m on is fronted by a large channel of open water (a natural divide between Stilt Homes and Houseboats), so I don’t feel at all crowded in.

I’m not sure I’ll make use of the 2-storey styles;¬† while I like to look of both, they’re a little too big for my needs. But then, I might just be tempted at some point to have a play.¬† in the meantime, would I recommend the Stilt Home designs to someone looking for a new Linden Premium Account Home? Absolutely.

Linden Stilt Homes released in Second life

Premium Linden Stilt Home became available on Monday, December 21st, 2020

Update, December 22nd: it appears that a significant issue with experience keys that affects grid-wide experience is impacting the deployment of the Stilt Homes – see: BUG-229892 “[Upilft] Experiences Failures”. The issue is currently being investigated by Linden Lab.

Updated: The release is on hold due to “unforeseen circumstances” – see Patch’s update for more.

Monday, December 21st, 2020 saw the long anticipated release of the new Stilt Homes theme for the Premium-only Linden Homes.

The new homes were first unveiled in June 2020 (see: Second Life: looking at the new Linden Homes Stilt theme), but their roll-out was delayed as a result of the work involved in transitioning Second Life to running on Amazon AWS servers, coupled in the last few days by some back-end issues the Lab needed to get under control.

Over 3,800 Stilt Homes have been added to Bellisseria and will be made available in the run-up the Christmas. As with other releases, four styles of house are included in the theme

The Stilt Homes are inspired by coastal home common to the south-eastern United States,notably Florida, where such house styles can be found along low-lying (and often hurricane prone) areas. As with previous Linden Homes releases, the house come in four styles, any of which can be selected by the controller cunningly disguised as a lamp that sits adjacent to each 1024 sq metre parcel.

The four style in the theme are:

  • Havana: single-storey 3-roomed, cross-shaped house with central front-to-back room providing access to front covered porch and rear covered deck, also accessible from one side room.
  • Tortuga:¬† single-storey with largely open-plan design providing two room, with a smaller third room to the front. A small porch area to the front aspect, and large deck / dock to the rear.
  • Lauderdale: a two-storey unit with two rooms downstairs¬† and two upstairs, one with a balcony. Features a full length front porch with roof over, and sliding doors to the rear opening to a rear deck-come-dock.
  • Santiago: a two-storey house with open-plan ground floor and two bedrooms, one with a rear-facing balcony.¬† Features a ¬Ĺ-porch with verandah over to the front, and deck to the rear. A front facing balcony is accessible from the upper floor.
“Land side” Stilt Homes

Just as we saw with the preview region seen in June, the Stilt Homes are broadly split into two categories: those built on low-lying sandy land and sandbars, and those either partially or fully over water, with some of the later connected to the land via board walks. Those on land are adjacent to the local roads, and have wooden stairways leading up to them. All four designs have decks / docks associated with them, with the entire release occupying a new expansion to the the east of Bellesseria that also have some Houseboats included in the mix, for a total of 3,875 Stilt Homes and 552 houseboats.

This expansion takes the form of a series of sandy islands made up of multiple regions, with none of the islands connected directly to another, except via the water channels between them. This perhaps makes these Stilt Homes an ideal place to live for those who enjoy puttering about in an amphibious car – although admittedly, transitioning from water to land (or vice versa) can be a little tricky given the need to¬† avoid intruding on someone’s privacy / land. Perhaps LL should consider providing ramps into and out of the water at various public reaches of sand in the future.

Some 552 of the ever-popular houseboat theme (foreground) are also included alongside the Stilt Home release

Given the problems being encountered with various SL web properties, the release was cautious – the first region to be offered up being Alagoon, with around 22 units built over water and three more either fully or partially on land. It was presented as a test region to see how things went in terms of hiccups, etc. However, availability soon increased to other regions.

Back in June, I commented that of all the Linden Home designs, the Stilt could be the first to tempt me away from my Houseboat. Six months on and that still holds true; if I could guarantee getting an over-the-water Stilt (or at least one partially over water), I would be sorely tempted. In this I admit that an added attraction would in part due to some of the region names that have been selected, given my liking for a good (or bad!) pun.

Take for example MARLIN Munroe, Rocky Bal Boata, Otter Limits, Getmah Drift, Shore Thing, Lone Shark, Knot Atoll, Mussel Beach, To name but a few. Then there is Tuna Turner (which adjoins the water region of Immoral Porpoises, both of which are just one region over from Salmon and Gillfunkel, and more besides, include my personal favourite: Jamaica Me Crazy.¬† It’s clear that tongues were firmly in cheeky was putting these regions together!

Abnor Mole of the LDPW inspects the newly available Stilt Homes in Alagoon

As always, all of the Linden Homes can be obtainedby Premium Members¬† (subject to individual theme availability) through the Premium Member’s Linden Home page at secondlife.com, whilst the regions in Bellisseria are open to general access.