Second Life

I have been part of multiple projects using Linden LabsSecond Life, a massive virtual world where thousands of users can interact using “avatars”. Almost anything can be created in Second Life, and its behaviour can be controlled using a scripting language called LindenScript.

One of the projects was an actual university assignment, whereby we had to design mini-games that were similar in style and theme to what you might have seen on a TV game-show, like The Crystal Maze.

The other projects, however, were extracurricular; and I worked with fellow students Chris Butler and Matthew Brittain. Firstly, we supplied the assets for a “machinima” in Second Life as a pilot TV programme for Channel 4, which was directed by Pixel-Lab. Secondly, we worked on a major press event when the University of Derby signed a deal with global technology services giant, EDS.

For the press event, we had to model a replica of the specialist Games Development Suite in Second Life, as that was where the signing took place in real life, and we produced avatars that would mimic the actions of the real people in the room. You can find the university’s article on the event here. Expand this post to see screenshots of how we built the virtual Games Development Suite.

Building the Virtual Games Development Suite

Designing the floorplan with placeholder desks.
One of the chairs in the lab.
A wide-angle shot from inside the lab.
One of the PCs in its cage under the desk.
The doors were scripted to open or close when cllicked on by an avatar.
The computer monitors displayed a variety of things, including the occasional BSOD. 😉
In the corner of the lab we had a games cabinet, which had an original Xbox with LEGO Star Wars in it.
In another corner we had these storage cupboards filled with goodies like retro games and consoles.
One of the windows.
A ceiling light!
A picture of the lab when it was very nearly finished. I’m quite proud of the artwork on the back wall, I had to make the textures from scratch.
Another picture of the almost finished lab, this time of the front of the room showing the projector screen and whiteboard. The desk in the middle was specially scripted for the press event.

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