Thursday, December 4, 2008
How Botgirl Cloned Her Second Life Avatar in Twinity
I had a lot of fun giving Twinity another try this week so I thought I'd offer a brief introduction. Twinity is a "mirror" virtual world based on physical world geography. Berlin is their first build and will have over 50,000 structures digitized by the end of the year. Although Twinity is still very much a work-in-progress it's worth checking out.
Getting Started: You can download and install the Windows-only client software after registering at twinity.com. When you first log in you'll be teleported to a welcome area. Expect a learning curve, especially if you have ingrained habits from Second Life. Although they've made a clear effort to simplify their interface, I didn't find it especially intuitive. That said, after a few hours of effort, I was able to pay more attention to experiencing the world than figuring out how to operate within it.
Most options such as chat, search and animations are accessed from a small icon-based menu box at the bottom of the screen.
The orange "me" icon launches a window for avatar modification and clothes shopping. Your avatar can be modified by changing settings on a series of sliders.
Now here's the fun part: You can clone your Second Life avatar by importing a few images. You can use just a straight-on view like the one below or optionally add a profile shot for a more exact duplicate. It is very important to use shots with even lighting and pleasing color and contrast, because they provide the texture for your new face.
After a little trial and error with different photos and some work with the sliders, I'm pretty happy with the result.
I'll cover more on Twinity in a future post. For now, here's a quick video clip to give you the look and feel of moving through the world. The mirror is especially cool.