New Metaverse Land Sale

Stake a claim on your own virtual land in =IcaruS= RealmS!

With your piece of the Metaverse, your vision can take shape in 3D, whether it is a historical recreation, castle, classroom, boardroom, training ground, even a playground!

=IcaruS= Realms View

We have three membership types available with a one-time setup fee of £11 and very reasonable tier rates:

Full sim membership for £14/month
Quarter sim membership for £7/month
Eighth sim membership for £4/month

We’ll set up your sim for you, with estate manager rights. You’ll have freedom to terraform the land from default flat ground or select a pre-created terrain and start building immediately. Visit our =IcaruS= RealmS page for more details.

You’re also welcome to visit us via Hypergrid address:
secondlife://icarus-grid.dyndns-server.com:8002/.

Out With Outerlands – Pt. 4 of 4: Ode to Other Options

OK – this post series started as a full-on rant. The apparent incompetence and instability of Outerland – and, indeed, SL – have gone too far. It’s time for change.

Wrecked

Clinging to what once worked (kinda) and whining about who did or didn’t do what is not a solution. We’ve documented the failures through appropriate channels. There comes a point where you move past the Loss & Damage Reports and identify Recoverable Assets. This has given us the chance to (once again) re-calibrate. What brought us to the metaverse/3D web? Why do we continue to defend and define our outpost?

To me, it’s about a pioneering spirit. Personally, melodrama, games and even idle chat bore me to tears – but I’m re-learning that those are the things that got my ancestors across The Pond on the “Sea Venture” and the “Mayflower” – got ‘em setting up shop in the Gold Rush of ‘49 and building the Transcontinental Railroad.

ANYWAY – my point being: we are looking forward even if there may be Tempests. If you are reading this far – you know of SL and maybe even OS. You know of the strong, professional, global communities that have been built. You are one of the ones looking forward.

The once glorious ship that got us here may be damaged – but we are pioneers.

Out With Outerlands – Pt. 3 of 4: Distant Early Warnings

Once Upon a Time there was a castle. In fact, there were two castles – the Kasteel Verloren was a Second Life Destination in Otherland to top all Destinations. Natalia Zelmanov wrote about touring it in its heyday, in her Mermaid Diaries.

Kasteel Verloren, Once Upon a Time
from b-places

I was able to get land in a neighboring region and was inspired to build my own castle with terraced gardens leading down to a river and a waterfall. The land was up against a mountain side so we built the castle to nestle into the landscape by building partially into the mountain. Otherland management was very helpful and actually terraformed to dig down deeper than what is ordinarily allowed for me to incorporate a cellar.

The Otherland sims were all cohesive and landscaped one into the other so it was possible to travel from one to another by rolling land, intricate waterways or glorious, scenic air. There were regular communications from land management and seasonal events and appropriate land changes such as snow at Christmas. Management was always prompt to respond to questions and all clearly had the information and skills to work with people and virtual land.

IcaruS House in Winter

In August of 2009, Otherland became Outerland and within days sims were moved – sometimes with others put in their places, sometimes not – Verloren was gone. There was no regard for landscaping sim edges to tie them together and water levels from region to region simply made no sense. The lovely waterfalls that had so carefully smoothed transitions started to disappear, leaving unsightly piles of rocks.

At the time, there was a great deal of concern voiced in the land group by residents, but we were assured by the new Outerland management that the sim edges would be smoothed out and cohesive again within a couple of weeks. We had to make do with the disjointed ‘chinese puzzle’ of regions around us and just make the best of what we had. There was a revolt then, with quite a few leaving Outerland. We chose to stay, feeling tied to the properties we had occupied for so long.

Months later, nothing had been done to improve the mismatched sims but there were certainly still regular withdrawals for land payment from my PayPal account. Then I got an IM saying I would have to move to another sim within the week, as not enough people were renting on the sim where I had two parcels. I was given no help or discount or even suggestion for what areas were available that might suit. This was far more than moving of sims, it was the destruction of a community and its history and showed a true lack of appreciation for maintaining a loyal, cohesive customer base.

I begrudgingly moved to Van Bleeck simply because it was familiar, and had to landscape myself in order to try fit the castle back into a similar topography. The hope was that with Nyx’s long history there and both of us on the same sim there might be some stability. See Part One for her experience.

I had already lost faith in this new land management company by then – before all the random landscaping and buried buildings (see Part Two for iSkye’s view) – but I thought at least things had settled down.

That was over a year ago. Since then we have had regular guests for fencing, hunts and university tours among other things. We’re on the Bus Stop Tour as well as (most recently) the B-Places directory. In short, we have represented this region actively and positively.

Yes, of course, we have our OpenSim regions, too – but the sense of place and community has been established for us in SL. I am now realising i should have heeded the warning signs and I welcome all suggestions for a stable, active Second Life land management company.

Out With Outerlands – Pt. 2 of 4: “Oops, Don’t Know What Happened”

The Earth Moves
About a month ago, after I’d rezzed in at van Bleeck, I noticed something different about my place. Things just looked wrong. I found the Medieval pub model that was nestled against the side of my hill before was now half-buried into it. The line of the hill’s ridge looked different – then I saw a white marble bench suspended a good meter above the top of the hill. Hmmm… I looked further along the top of the ridge. On IcaruS HQ’s side of the hill, just behind it, a vertical slice of hill had been hacked off along the parcel border. I flew over and saw the land level had come up against the side of the castle, and halfway up the trunk of the tree in the field. Something was definitely not right.

And a Lake Goes Missing
Then, while still in mid-air, I turned round and…no lake? Adjusted my draw distance. Still an empty crater. I came down to the ground and walked to the lake shore. Dry lake bed. That lovely lake was one of the main reasons I chose to get land in van Bleeck.

I alerted Leon and sent an instant message to the rep for the land management company: “Have you got a few minutes? I need to speak with you.” If I didn’t get a reply I was going to send a notecard. A few minutes later she responded, and after I explained the problem, she asked me to teleport her. She was strangely unaware of the changes that had been made and couldn’t offer any explanation. She promised to check on it, then apologised profusely and said nothing could be done. She also mentioned we could move to a new location and they would offer a very good deal. Leon was especially unhappy about the prospect of another relocation.

Sim-edge Parcels Pop Up
While she was there I asked her about the land changes on the =IcaruS= HQ property and my own. She flew up to the hill behind the castle and I followed. I saw there was a new tenant on a tiny parcel that had been squeezed out along the sim’s edge, behind the castle. There were “for sale” signs on other small parcels that weren’t there before. Hmm, strange. I asked about them too, and commented that they seemed to have sprung up overnight.

No Clear Answers
The rep couldn’t explain any of these things, which I found puzzling. Surely there is some record of activities performed on sims, I thought. She did say the missing lake and botched parcel terrains were clearly mistakes and she would rectify them. Oddly, she was unable to repair the deformed hill behind the castle – at length I told her not to worry, we’d wait on that.

The Lake Restored, the Land Not
The next morning, the lake was back – the land was not. We did what we could – the HQ’s land was now backed up to a tiny, occupied parcel, so he couldn’t terraform the other side of the hill – he did what he could to match his side somewhat. I got the half-buried pub sorted.

Now, these kinds of problems are perplexing and annoying time wasters. Since the land management was taken over by the current company, we’re not alone with our issues. Other former landowners report similar issues. Two groups that met regularly in a nearby sim also owned by the same land company had problems too. One group relocated to a new, more suitable location. The other group’s meetings have ceased for the time being, their status is unknown. And the tiny parcel behind HQ is vacant again, after only a week or two.

I’m sure it wasn’t always like this.

Out With Outerlands – Pt. 1 of 4: One Mistake Too Many

Outerland estate management has made one mistake too many.

Once Upon A Time I had a custom-built farmhouse on a green mountain. Flowered pastures held a burbly creek that fed into a lake and thru my forest of giant old trees there was a waterfall.

Okay – that “Once Upon A Time” was yesterday. For the first time in weeks, I was able to log into SL and try to remember what I enjoy about it. Sat by the creek for a bit, ordered another flower field (from Melchizedek Blauvelt this time) then went shopping at Lisp and brought home a lovely garden bench. All lovely and normal (in a virtual sense).

Blue Ridge, Nyx House, Back ViewBlue Ridge, Nyx House, Front View

Today – checking e-mail i get a notice from Second Life that a heap of my things have been returned to me by an Outerland Estate Manager. No notice – no explanation.

Logging into my “home” in SL – I found years of building, collecting and landscaping jammed into my Lost & Found and what had been “home” reverted to a neutral landscape with a big “For Sale” sign. The Outerland rep confirmed that this was clearly a mistake – she also confirmed that she could see my monthly payment was made (as it has been FOR FOUR YEARS!) yet she was unable to explain how it happened, offer any solution or demonstrate at all that she even had a clear understanding of what could be done to make the situation better.

So – Outerland loses one rental – no big deal for them. Right? Well, there is more to this story and we’re gonna tell it.

UPDATE: The region is restored – but the verdict is still out.

- Nyx