Sunday, December 30, 2012

Echoes in the Garden

Finally another location post! This is Echoes in the Garden, which is... chilling. In a good way. Such a small place, and yet such an impact. Turn up your graphics, turn up your sound, and then don't try to cheat this area by flying over it. An extremely haunting dream that changes as you walk over it, this is definitely a place you shouldn't miss out on. It takes so little time to walk through that there is really no excuse for missing it.

 There is a lack of colour in this place, and that makes the subtle touches of radiance all the more noticeable. It's so surreal in this place that I can't quite describe it, only that the the sounds add so much to the atmosphere. Listen closely at all times for the different whispers and the different songs sung by a little girl onto the wind as you step past a landscape that conforms to you.
 The eyes will follow you, the steps will change and rearrange themselves for your as you take each step, and flowers grow and disappear in the wake of your footfalls. This could be a dream you once had but could never remember, which fits the theme of this place so perfectly as voices ask you if anyone could hear or would listen to the echoes in the garden. I don't understand all the symbolism here, but damned if I'm not going to keep trying to figure out it.

I think the most fantasical part of this journey was approaching the top realizing that you're not invisible in this area-- this place sees you. It reacts to you, responds to you. And when you call for the lightning and the thunders, it's such a thrill to see it respond. Is it really a dream? Is it a lucid one? Just what exactly is watching you at all times, the raindrops forming into eyes that can't seem to tear itself away from you as they fall, clinging by the barest strand to the cloud in which they originated from? Where do the roots of this dream and this garden lead? Just what exactly might you not have heard?

If you're not straining to find more of this place and hear more of the voices by the end of this experience, you might have to start over from the beginning.

Shamera is wearing:
Hair with hat -- [ANCAYI] Winter Hat (free)
Scarf -- couverture Neck Warmer>Grey (group gift)
Socks -- Utilizator Basic Socks ($100L per pack)
Shoes --  Paradisis Icy Cute (free)

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Happy Holidays!

 Quick post since December turned out to be a much busier month than I thought it would be! (But then, don't most Decembers?) Haven't had much time to go exploring, and thus! Fashion posts. Just how is it that I managed to make time for clothes?

...Well, it's called the Advent Calendar and a lot of very generous and awesome people on Second Life.

Hair -- *Dura* Group Gift for women
Scarf -- "La petite fleur" AutumnSetupMuffler ($30L)
Outfit -- Umi Usagi (free group gift)
Socks -- Utilizator Basic Socks ($100L)
Ice Skates -- Paradisis Icy Cute (free)

 So many good movies came out in December, too! Anyone seen The Hobbit yet? Rise of the Guardians? I was a little sad Jack Frost didn't stay in my town very long... everything was glimmering in the morning, but when I finally went out, it started to rain and melt all the nice White Winter stuffs.

Hair -- Magika Early Christmas (free group gift)
Scarf -- ::Mr. Poet:: Wide Scarf (free)
Dress -- PR21-CheckD (free hunt item)
Shirt/Pin -- +NK+ 2011 X-Mas Gift (free)
Socks -- Utilizator Experimental Socks ($100L)
Shoes -- Utilizator White Boots ($100)

I have a Christmas tradition where instead of watching things like A Christmas Carol or things like that... I like to sit down with warm food and company and spend an evening watching The Hogfather. Because Discworld! At this rate, though, I think I may develop a tradition to watch Rise of the Guardians before Easter as well. For the people who have seen both, don't they have similar concepts? I love it way too much.

Hat -- MESHiah Christmas Hat (free)
Hair -- Magika Faint Blood (Halloween group gift)
Outfit -- Umi Usagi "USA long-tea" (lucky board)
Socks -- Utilizator Experimental Socks ($100L)
Shoes -- Utilizator White Boots ($100L)
Extra! This outfit was in no way free, but I don't know if people remember how much I seem to gush over everything that *G Field* makes. Perfect fit? Oh, yes. I've go absolutely nothing invisible on the Avatar 2.0 right now! AND the coat was half off!

Also, people shouldn't miss out on Alice Project's Advent Calendar. What is it? Well, it's a bunch of stores giving away one free thing every day this month for December. That's right: everyday. Something new.

Hair -- *Alice Project* Jessica (Advent gift)
Outfit -- G Field Winter Coat "Natalie" ($170L)
Socks -- Utilizator Basic Socks ($100L)
Shoes -- G Field Lace-up Boots "Gina" ($280)

Friday, November 16, 2012

The LA Experience

 Short post! Mostly for a little place this time, featured on the Destination Guide for real places. I wanted something different, and people who know me know that I grew up in LA... it's been a while since I went back and I have to admit I miss the place, despite my love of the beautiful British Columbia.

 It's a little club called Whisky a Go Go, and outside  it's just a single street corner, but gosh, I love it. It certainly feels very Los Angeles. Cars and billboards and a 76 gas station... wow. I never even realized the difference between LA and here were so stark until I saw this place again. For all urban areas are similar, they do also have their own little differences... or not so little?

So admittedly? I really like this place and it's little detailings... I will admit that I was slightly disappointed to discover that the shops on this 'street' were barren of anything. They're just hollow boxes, and I had hoped to discover actual little details within them.

 But otherwise... wow. You know what I was most impressed by? The sunset. The haziness (because LA is covered by a layer of smog, and it's actually pretty obvious most of the time) and the graffiti and cars everywhere. The bits of dirtiness. LA, to me, is almost right in the middle of what urban centers are like, but I may be extremely biased. British Columbia has a dirty, but considered clean in comparison, downtown. Los Angeles... well, I remember as a child when my uncle took me downtown and I refused to get out of the car because I just couldn't believe how scary the outside was!

Of course, after that, I've been to worse cities, but if given the choice... I probably still wouldn't step outside the car in downtown LA. ^^;; I probably wouldn't step outside in downtown Vancouver, actually.

Shamera is wear (for this occasion):
Hair -- D!va Hair [ Tomoko2 ] (lucky board free)
Top -- R.icielli Peplum Jacket/#blue ($15L hunt)
Shoes -- R.icielli TESS boots in black ($15L hunt)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


...why, yes, I am rather slow lately, mostly due to NaNoWriMo and role plays taking up most of my free time. But I had this lined up from October, and figured I could take the time to write this out, at least! So you'll get this in-between my writings about secret agents and government conspiracies!

What's 'this', you ask? It's a region called SLOW, cloud covered and serene with several stores to shop and several areas to frolic. I originally arrived with the intent on shopping for arm warmers for the upcoming cold season but hadn't been able to find any in the store I was directed to. Instead, I wandered out of the store in hopes that maybe I was just slightly off and it might be a neighbouring store when... well, let's just say I hadn't been expecting the calm beauty of the place. SLOW is a flooded region, and you might want to pull on a pair of waterproof boots to wander through. There's areas with rain and there are dry areas, but it's all as beautiful as you might expect when you put on a pair of headphones to listen to the quiet and calming power of a storm.

The sky is hazy and grey and the buildings are all either wood or stone, washed out and grey like a lazy day spent lounging in bed while rain platters on your windows to lull you to sleep.

...I gave in and bought those curtains, by the way, because they are beautiful, beautiful things. I'm thinking about buying a set of umbrellas as well, which is sold in one of the stores with animated textures for raindrops falling off the umbrella and gathering on the fabric. (Ignore any words that don't make sense, I've been word splurging for the month.)

Now this is a place that I've been back to on more than one occasion because it's just so calming and peaceful... ever had that stubbornly bad day which leaves you with a rain cloud that won't leave your head? I'd actually suggest this place when you're in a mood like that. With the gentle rain and soothing background sounds, it's bound to wash away all bad moods.

What else can I say about it? The pictures don't do it justice. It's not somewhere to go if you're expecting big and fast entertainment. Honestly, SLOW is very aptly named for those times when you're feeling lazy and just need somewhere on Second Life that reflects your attitude... or somewhere you need to calm down at. In fact, it's hard for me to pull words to say about it because it's more of a feeling and an aesthetic area than it is a place to be written about.

Looking for that quiet place to relax and not even hang out with other people? This is it. I have to admit, I've been using this place to get into the mood for writing lately, just parking my avatar somewhere and enjoying the ambiance of it all. If I could step into Second Life to do my writing, I might make a long pit stop right here.

I might have... intentionally taken pictures there again when I realized I took some nice pictures and then that I totally wasn't dressed correctly for the sim. (I was ready for winter! Not a little rain.) So I went back with another outfit and therefore you guys get two outfits for the price of one!

 Shamera is wearing:
Hat w/ hair -- Rosy Mood (free)
Jacket -- SPLASH (free)
Jeans -- R.icielli Anna ($10L hunt item)
Boots -- *COCO* (free group gift)

Dress -- *COCO* (free group gift)
Scarf --{ Zeery } (old free gift)
Socks -- Utilizator (not free)
Shoes -- Loords of London (free@ Beginners Luck)

Saturday, November 3, 2012

MadPea Carnival

 Everyone in Second Life has heard of MadPea before, right? They're one of the prominent names when it comes to games: puzzles, adventure, mystery, etc, etc. And if anyone knows me, they'll know I love playing games on Second Life. The Devil's Labyrinth had been one of my favourite places years ago, and that was long before MadPea, even. If you've never played one of their games on Second Life, or worse, have never heard of them, you're definitely missing out!

 Admittedly, my next post was going to be about SLOW or even The Well, which was a game I saw when signing onto Second Life once. But then the opening page advertised MadPea Carnival, and I completely lost track of what I was doing in order to visit the grid.

(I think I had been doing something for NaNoWriMo, but then again, I can't quite remember. I am doing that this month, though, so I may be scarcer when it comes to posts, mostly because I don't really have time to explore as much as I'd like to... NaNo, Haven, a convention this weekend, birthdays, and this blog? November is a busy month!)

But let's go back to MadPea. To me, this entire place is extremely impressive. There's a lot of attention to detail and textures, and all the pictures look like this because I allow regional windlight settings. Looks cool, doesn't it? It certainly makes the rare red splash in the entire carnival all the more noticeable. I like to keep regional windlights on mostly because I want to see what the creators of the sim intended for me to see. Not many people have their own windlights, though, it seems.

The fun part is, this actually is a carnival! There are games and stores and many, many poses to take pictures on. There are rides and items to win for those who dare to try their hand, and then there are promotions for the games that they still have on Second Life (there are a few that they took off, I believe, as I remember a very old one that had to do with... twins? Or at least one area on their grid that told a story and you had to climb and climb and I was stuck for hours because I'm terrible at gathering clues), so it's not to be missed!

It maybe slightly gruesome and a little scary to the average person, but it's well worth a visit. My pictures don't do the region justice at all, especially when you see the occasional mechanical spider car run along the tracks of the roller coaster.

Be aware that this is a very prim and texture heavy area. I was lucky that I didn't really lag, but it certainly did take a good amount of time before everything loaded. This is a huge area, and I haven't explored all of it yet. In fact, I think it's going to take me a good while to go through all of this if there are various games from MadPea that I've missed (and I'm certain I missed quite a few-- their latest hunt, for one), and then there are the games to be played just right here.

If nothing else, I suggest going because it's one of those places on Second Life that really shouldn't be missed. I made a friend on that sim, even, who told me about a gorgeous sim he used to go to that didn't exist anymore. Don't be like me and be that person who has no idea on what they're missing out!

As a special dedication, for anyone who knows me and my love of Cthulhu mythos (how can you not know with how much I mention it in my blog?) is this little area which seems to have cracked the middle of the carnival. There's definitely an Old One slowly awakening in this area, and I don't recommend getting too close to it lest you don't mind losing your sanity.

(Like I said, I had originally been dressed for elsewhere, and too impatient to find an outfit for this area to change into. I'll be better in the next sim, I promise!)

 Extra pictures (because I couldn't stop taking them!):

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


 Whoops, did I say something about last post for Halloween? I might have lied. But Siden is too good a place to pass up, and I was looking for something that might visually look like Haven, which is the beautiful beautiful game I'm in on DreamWidth.

 Now I haven't gone through the entire sim, which is somewhat funny because I've been here months ago and gotten the navigation HUD to explore the area. Ran away quickly enough when I fit the top level of the hospital and started getting attacked by the ghosts; ghosts everywhere!

I'm not sure if I can write a entry that would do this place justice, because this place is large and so complicated, and with so many different layers even though I mainly stuck to one level-- the city area. There's still the underground sewer system, many floors of the hospital, and I don't know how many other places.

 The detail here is pretty amazing, from foggy and rainy areas to places that are completely overrun with growth and negligence (not that you can neglect areas on Second Life; you actually have to work to make it look like that!), and little areas hidden everywhere with supplies for those who are wearing the HUD and role-playing there. Food, medicine, gas, etc, etc. It's all so complicated and all very, very impressive.

I got there just in time for a hunt event as well! Although this isn't exactly the hunt event that I'm used to, but rather one with more emphasis on hunt than most other hunts. I actually just arrived in the sim as they shouted the five minute mark before the hunt, and chatted with a few very friendly players there who were dressed and waiting for the event to start.

And what is this event? Well! As I started exploring the city, several other players ran right past me and about the streets, and being the curious bee I am, I might have panned in my camera to find out what they were doing.

Apparently this hunt is the hunt of the grid's very own Elizabeth Siden-- or at least for her head, which ran (floated?) from the players as they shot and cast spells at her. She has health and drops items as she's hurt, and the player who manages to kill her gets in-game money (not Linden dollars, but Siden HUD money).

Let that digest for a moment.

Now add in some zombies that spawn as you cross through certain streets that will attack you and you can kill, and this is practically a video game in itself. Not just Second Life. 

Now that's give some kudos to those maintaining this event, and this area in general. I got to talk a bit to Queen Sooden, who plays Elizabeth Siden for the hunt as well, who was patient enough to stay and chat for a while as well as participate in another role-play going on when a Time Lord landed in Siden and started asking around. I don't know if people understand how much work moderators do (and I'm looking at you, Blue, the super awesome moderator for Haven who somehow manages to be everywhere and run everything and still talk to everyone, do game events, and juggle all the suggestions for future stuff), but the amount of work? A lot.

After chatting a while, I decided to pick up the game HUD and give it a quick test spin, myself. So I walked around with the HUD on and was immediately attacked by a swarm of zombies, and then pumpkins just for Halloween. It was great fun taking out the zombies, though, since they're rather slow and I suppose it's for beginners to the game. They give a bit of EXP and I was on level three before they announced another game hunt. It's going on every few hours today, so if you have time... don't miss it!

Extra picture for when a Time Lord dropped in to see all the commotion.

And some extra pictures of inside that I just adored. There's a tonne more, but I think you ought to explore the sim for yourself.

Happy Halloween!

Just a quick outfit post, because busy-busy-busy~ And the next area I've got lined up fits perfectly for November. Not to fear, though, because I tend to like blogging about scary things at all times if I find them interesting enough (like how I watched Silent Hill Revelations last night and word-vomited all over my Plurk on the pros and cons of live action movie canon when opposed to actual game canon-- and I've got to mention again that I love the cameos that I won't mention because spoilers. See? Word vomit), so there's bound to be more Halloween-y style posts not meant for actual Halloween.

Glasses -- *Tenacio* Glasses (Free)
Hair -- *eha~ Eri (Free reopening gift)
Mouth - (-A-) Funtom Lollipop Orange (Past Kuroshitsuji Hunt)
Necklaces -- Pumpkin Necklace (Free) / !*Rebel -X-*! Pumpkins Juicy (Landmark expired)
Outfit -- NS:: Pumpkin Mesh_Dress (Free)
Backpack -- Halloween Bat Doll (Free)

And then there are the free earrings that I forgot to put on, oops.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Ghosts of Halloween

So welcome to the Ghosts of Halloween, a grid-wide event and hunt that's... just about impossible to do. This was perhaps one of the hardest hunts I've ever done, despite it being such a short one. Reason? Well, for one, it's trying to find little ghosts in a gigantic area, and they move around. Not only that, but there are mass amount of decoy ghosts all around. Decoys? YES. A LOT OF THEM. (And hey, I figured out how to take narrower screenshots... just don't full-size my SL!)

 So despite my love of hunts, I'm not very good at them. People who know me in real life might remember one hunt (the Kuroshitsuji one last year) where I literally spent hours at one store making myself motion sick by camera panning everywhere before I finally threw in the gauntlet and gave my computer to a roommate who found the item in under five minutes after I taught him how to use the Second Life controls. And then I just made him do the rest of that hunt for me, so it was alright. He finished it in record time, too, but then refused to do ones for me after that. Said just one was enough for him. Too bad, huh? With the amount of time it takes for me to do hunts, I don't blog about them very often.

So! What's so interesting about this place? C'mon, I don't showcase hunts unless the actual place is pretty in itself, and I'll admit that the stores on the grid aren't super fancy for the most part. There are some, definitely, but what caught my attention were the ports around this area, all with ships and all ready to set sail.

(You might have noticed how there's so many ghosts about, I can't seem to take a picture without one flying right into my camera.)

I was very, very tempted to test out my windlight settings around here (who knew? I'd been taking pictures with just the natural SL day/night settings so far), but after playing around with it for a bit, I decided that it really did look best at its most natural-- set on midnight. And it really is set on midnight, seeing as it gets super bright the moment I step away from this area.I love the dark and mysterious aspect of this place, though. It's different than the blatant attempt at horror some places try for and a subtler attempt for mystery and ghosts rather than scary.

 Expect to put in some time for this hunt if you want to get all the prizes, since the first time I tried this I thought I got a good majority of items until I went back home and attempted to open things up only for a giant ghost to eat my head! And it ended up being ghosts in most of those folders, so I realized this hunt was going to be much harder than I had originally anticipated. But then I went back again and actually slowed down to appreciate the sights when I started getting frustrated, sitting down at little eateries and a pastry shop and even a beautiful sewing room. And I love sewing rooms. I probably shouldn't so much, but... it just feels like home! The dress I'm wearing clips a little bit around the neck area, but... well, what can you do?

Hunt @ Ghosts of Halloween
Cat -- :SEY Black Cat (Free Hunt item)
Hair -- Uw.St Gost Halloween Hair (Free Hunt item)
Dress -- AMERIE Halloween Dress (Free Hunt item)
Hands -- Uw.St Gost Scrunchie / :SEY Pumpkin Bag (Free Hunt items)
Socks -- Utilizator ($100 per pack)
Shoes -- S@BBiA Short Boots (Free Halloween Group Gift)
Poses -- **Ray Skin** ($1L for pack)