Tuesday, September 22, 2015

... and back after literally a few years.


Shocking!  Yes, an actual entry to a SL Steampunk blog.  However, the circumstances are unfortunatly not good.  As I was searching around for some other endeavors I've been working on, I came across the sad news one of the Second Life Standard bearers of Steampunk, the wonderful Steelhead sims, are quite likely to close at the end of September, 2015.  A good deal has changed since I shuttered my old blog (The Steampunk Tribune), and I don't nearly visit SL as much as I used to visit, due to that damnable RL, but learning of this development was disappointing.  

The rational for Mr. T. Eclipse's decision are quite understandable (and much better covered by those with active media presence in SL), but at the very least a note of this impressive sim heading to the ether most certainly merited mention in this corner of the internet.  For more details, please visit:

The New Worlds Notes :
http://nwn.blogs.com/nwn/2015/09/steelhead-second-life-sl-steampunk.html

Additional insights at SL Newser:
http://slnewser.blogspot.com/2015/09/more-on-steelheads-closing.html

Inara Pey's Blog:
http://modemworld.me/2015/09/10/a-steelhead-farewell-in-second-life/

Journey to the Center of the Metaverse:
https://journeymetaverse.wordpress.com/2013/01/19/steelhead-main-sim-to-close-but-stay-tuned/

... and the Steelhead Flickr Feed, at:
https://www.flickr.com/groups/steelhead/




Though no longer blogging about SL Steampunk, I'll endeavor to keep this particular page up.  Few things are sadder than the departure of a location, be it Real Life or Second Life, passing into the mist... like the proverbial "tears in rain".  However, at the very least, I can preserve their steamy memory here.

((If you have the opportunity, do stop by, and take a few photos of Steelhead, before its gone.))

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Piermont Landing: The Sixth Annual Formal Masquerade Ball


This weekend the Piermont Landing will host the Sixth Annual Formal Masquerade Ball!  Amazing as always, it will take place this Saturday, the 26th of October, 2013, from 6pm to 9pm SLT, in Wheatstone Waterways!  Looking forward to seeing you there - and don't forget a mask!!

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Icons of New Babbage: The Lotus of the Sea (Vernian Sea)


New Babbage is well known for its amazing skyline, but the Vernian sea hides an amazing seascape, replete with amazing builds and fascianting locales to explore.  One such location is the stunning Lotus of the Sea!



Interior of the Lotus, with a beautiful mermaid chandelier gracing its stairwell

One of the oldest and noted locales in the Vernain, its is (full disclosure) owned by my partner, Ms. Breezy Carver-Fabre, after the original owner left.  After an unfortunate trolling incident, the Lotus was rebuilt in 2011 (to my recollection).  



Ms. Carver-Fabre's Writing desk, where she pens her blog

If one happens to be in the tubes below the Vernian Sea (accessible from the southern end of Port Babbage), do consider a visit to the Lotus... or one can simply take a convenient  shortcut, located here: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Vernian%20Sea/225/90/27



One unique feature of the Lotus is its ability to open and close
(for those high sea-states...!)


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Steampunk locations as of late 2013


New Babbage City Hall, circa December of 2012

I'm in the process of updating a "master list" of Steampunk locations in Second Life.  Most Steamland locations are known to the general populace, but there are always hidden gems if one does look!  Also, the locations will generally be for what I might call the "capital" sim for a Steampunk entity, if there is more than one sim as part of the destination.  For now, here are the locales....

Main Destinations
The below listed locations are the most visited locations in the "Steamlands" (the  conglomeration of Steampunk sims in Second Life).  Not a complete list, mind you, but its a start - I'll be on the lookout for more destinations!...

Independent State of Caledon (Caledon Victoria City)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Caledon%20Victoria%20City/128/128/25

Goatswood
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/NeverlandX/35/50/2003

Haven Township (Solice Haven)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Solace%20Haven/231/207/21

Mieville (Mieville Doyle)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Mieville%20Doyle/128/128/2

Neo-Victoria (Neo Victoria)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/NeoVictoria/16/128/1003

New Babbage (Babbage Square)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Babbage%20Square/161/202/111

Realm of Terra
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Novus/129/136/433

Rosser's Landing
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Rossers%20Landing%20II/128/128/2

Serenity Falls
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Serenity%20Falls/236/126/30


Steelhead   (Steelhead)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Steelhead/77/230/25

Stainless Steam
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Villain/128/128/2

1888
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Timherry%20Island/204/239/23



Steampunk Merchants List
 - The list below encompasses Steampunk merchants that have either an entire, or a majority of a sim.  There is a plethora of Steampunk merchants in SL, but for now, I am simply listing the larger locations...


BlakOpal (BlakOpal - Merchant)  
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/BlakOpal/98/102/23

Mytheopia (The Curious Prim - Merchant)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Mythopoeia/87/96/39

Steamed Custard (Custard Development - Merchant)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Custard%20Developments/197/202/2000

Steam Powered Nuts (Steam Powered Nuts, Inc. - Merchant)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Kingsburg/131/126/26

Tesla Isle (Unzipped - Merchant)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Tesla%20Isle/187/186/44



As is always the case, if any readers have any new locations, please feel free to leave a comment!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Icons of New Babbage: The Palaeozoic Museum of New Babbage


The old New Babbage Palaeozoic Museum museum used to reside in New Babbage Square (by the old Town Hall), but Miss Elleon Beragamasco relocated it, and it currently resides in Clockhaven.  To visit, please travel to:
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Clockhaven/32/90/111

... and for more historical information, please visit:



Displays at the museum - Don't Touch!

Friday, October 4, 2013

A revival of the New Babbage Register....



"Plus la change, plus la meme chose"...

The single constant with just about every locale in SL is change.  New Babbage is no exception, with plenty of builds coming and going over its five-ish years of  existence.  One small measure to attempt to keep the memory of old and/or was my small "New Babbage Register", which passed an eye over old aspects of New Babbage (including the first New Babbage newspaper, the "New Babbage Cog"), and photos of the old city builds.  To take a peek, please follow the URL below,

http://newbabbageregister.blogspot.com/

... and if one has suggestions for locales, please feel free to leave a comment as well!  I'll likely post one or two unique locations a month (ideally).

Monday, September 30, 2013

New date for the New Babbage Engineer's Ball - October 5th, 2013!


Due to some unforeseen circumstances, the Sixth Annual Engineer's Ball was cancelled last weekend, but  fortunately  it is rescheduled to this coming Saturday, October 5th, 2013.  Same wonderful events, great music from DJ Bats... so please re-mark your calenders for this Saturday, starting at 6pm SLT!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Steampunk Destinations: The Flying City of Lilith



As I return to reviewing Steampunk locales in Second Life, not only have I found some perennial favorites gone (e.g. Armada), but new ones cropping up.  A bit of research can provide intriguing results...



View of the Flying City (c. of Ironhearts.webs.com)

Additionally, two new factors seem to have emerged in SL Steampunk - a focus on formalized RP, and an infusion of more fantasy aspects into Steampunk (specifically "magic", but there are other varients.




One said destination is the Flying City of Lilith - a skyborne city with supernatural entities and roleplay dynamics.  Alas, upon visiting a number of times, the sim seemed a bit desolate, and a trip to their forums showed the last entry was at least one month ago (August '13).  I'm a tad  concerned that interaction on the locale may be limited, but please do consider a visit, enjoy the atmosphere, and make your own judgement, at:

http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Antigua%20Island/159/212/423



The interior of the Cherry Pie Gentleman's Club

Or their main sim website, located at: http://theironhearts.webs.com/

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Steampunk Events: The 6th Annual Engineer's Ball, at the Piermont Landing, New Babbage!


The amazing Steampunk social season is back!  The Piermont Landing is hosting the Sixth Annual Engineer's Ball, from 6pm to 9pm SLT, this coming Saturday, the 28th of September.  Do make a point of attending the premier of SL Steampunk social season, by making your presence known!  For more details, please visit the New Babbage Aethersite, located at: http://cityofnewbabbage.com/reader/

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Steampunk Destinations: The Clockwork Spiral


The more I write about the Gothic realms, the more I've become aware of its intersection with Steampunk (my previous in-depth genre).  While searching about for the "master list" of dark realms for SL, I came across an  interesting  destination - the Clockwork Spiral.



The central airship / dance locale, hosted by Gothica

The Clockwork Spiral is not only a very nicely done floating city, but its also benefits the National Kidney Foundation - an extremely worthy cause!  With a plethora of unique Steampunk and Gothic products - many of which are special limited editions by outstanding designers, one can lose track of time at this locale.



The wide streets of the Clockwork Spiral - ready for your shopping  adventures!

Unfortunately, I learned of this endeavor rather later (e.g. yesterday evening), so do consider visiting today (Sunday, the 22nd of September), as once the clock ticks to midnight, the sim will be gone!



Nicely enhanced facial additions for sale at the Contraption store

To learn more - or better yet, pay a visit and indulge in some retail therapy, please consider visiting at the following SLurl:

... or visit their webpage at: 




Saturday, February 2, 2013

Steampunk Merchants: House of RFyre (Gentlemen's Attire)


Entrance to the House of RFyre

I was first introduced to RFyre ages ago by my lovely partner, Ms. Breezy Carver-Fabre, and to Ms. Raven  Pennyfeathers's wide selection of genere attire.  Although labeled as "Gothic", many of the selections at RFyre easily meld into the Steampunk genre, and are a stylishly welcome addition to any gentleman's wardrobe.



An overview of the vast House of RFyre mainstore!

House of RFyre provides a wide selection of differing genres of attire, but upon entering her vast location, head left, and begin your shopping for your new stylish wardrobe!  The bulk of Steampunk / Gothic selection are there, but there are additional selection  throughout the grounds, in addition to supplemental works from associated designers as well!



A few things found at the left turn....

The mainstore is very large, so although a fellow will have quite a selection to browse through, so don't tarry, and head over to RFyre, located at: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Isle%20RFyre/49/126/77



... and a continuation of the selection of the fantastic selections!

The House of RFyre can be found on SL Marketplace, at: https://marketplace.secondlife.com/stores/2?id=2


Saturday, January 19, 2013

Steampunk Merchants: Pearse'd & Cut (Gentlemen's Attire)


The spectacular entrance to Pearse'd & Cut

An iconic stalwart of the Steamlands, Mr. E. Pearse's endeavor, Pearse'd and Cut resides in the lovely sim of Babbage Palisades.  As an avid member of the Steamlands, Mr. Pearse has a lengthy involvement with the Steamlands, including a wide selection of genre militaria, and by far the best selection of kilts with appropriate Steamlands tartan patterns (and matching ladies' dresses).



An excellent selection of Steamland militaria is available at Pearse'd and Cut!

Paying excruciating attention to detail, Mr. Pearse not only fashions attire, but the small, every day details that add color and panache to a virtual Steampunk existence, such as gentlemen's shaving accessories, outstanding footwear, and a few firearms as well!




A Steamlands "must-visit" location for men's attire (as well as noted repository of the SL Steamlands history), do stop by at his grounds, located at: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Babbage%20Palisade/160/30/106



Do pay a visit to Pearse'd & Cuts SL Marketplace locale, found at : https://marketplace.secondlife.com/stores/107596 .  Also, do visit his outstanding blog, Through the Filter of a Victorian Aesthetic, located at: http://victorianaesthetic.blogspot.com/

Friday, January 11, 2013

Steampunk Merchants: Xcentricity (Gentlemen's Attire)


Main entrance to Xcentricity!

One of the iconic designers of gentlemen's Steampunk attire, Xcentricity not only holds a fantastic selection of Steampunk mens-wear, but Mr. N. Sand's prices are amazing as well!  With a wide selection of attire, his designs are easily a fraction of other endeavors.  Additionally, he has a very nice tuxedo (a must for any gentleman), a very nice quantity of military-type uniforms, and a good number of additional items, such as deep-diving suits (in genre, of course), and a huge waist-coat selection.



A plethora of items for that Steampunk Gentleman!

Another "must-visit" for gentlemen's Steampunk attire, I highly recommend Xcentricity, so consider visiting their mainstore in beautiful Caledon Penzance, at: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Caledon%20Penzance/217/137/26



Well priced Steampunk / Victorian Suits as well!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Steampunk Travelogue: 1888


I often make a point of visiting sims in SL (when researching for the Steampunk Travelogue and the Steampunk Tribune) using an alt known only to a few.  The reasons are two-fold - first, it allows me to go incognito (so to speak), so that have the ability to wander around a sim as a "generic face", and obtain a "feel" for what the locale is like.  Secondly, it provides an opportunity to gauge how newcomers are received in a sim, be it in a friendly manner, ignored  or in some other manner.  



A ship docked on the residential area of 1888.

Sadly, while documenting 1888, a fellow with mutton chops, who appears to be a representative of the endeavor, approached me and began with a bit of a chiding for taking photos, informing me the sim was an RP location, and questioning my presence.  I will note the 1888 is not a closed sim (one can easily TP to the destination, hence, not "closed" to visitors), nor did the arrival notecard mention any limitations on photographs, so the diatribe seems misplaced as there were no notations regarding said activities.  The fellow was quite un-cordial in manner, to put it tactfully, so I bit my tongue , excused myself, and moved along.  As there was no specific limitations regarding the arrival or presence of visitors on the sim (especially ones who keep to themselves, as I was doing), I was a tad confused regarding this lecture, but perhaps they have had some issues in the past with some unsavory persons in the past.



The texturing for this version of Big Ben is a tad disappointing.

The "warm welcome" aside, I did impose upon a second party to take a stroll with me as my main av, and see if they concurred with assertion of the sim (to ensure that any negative bias was not out of line).  Essentially, the build is certainly in era theme, and the city itself is nicely laid out (reminiscent of Chicago 1920's format, with a side "street" housing larger plots).  However, the builds themselves were a bit on the average side (texture-wise), and a few notable works (such as the "Big Ben", above), were not done well (e.g. better renditions of Big Ben are available on SL Marketplace).  I did see some random RP, but nothing along the lines depths of Goatswood, the Steamlands, or akin to the extent of many Gor sims.



Serviceable Brownstones for rent.

A bit surprised at the build quality of the sim, as there are a plethora of new and more detailed Steampunk / Victorian builds available on SL.  However, the sim management places an emphasis on role play, per their website and arrival notecard.  Still, from my experience to the sim, do not expect a friendly welcome to 1888, lest you also receive a chiding from a sim representative for visiting - or to paraphrase the saying from my old Navy days, "your presence (as a visitor) is neither required nor desired".

For the sake of completeness, their website location is: http://www.1888sl.com/

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Steampunk Merchants: BlakOpal Designs (Gentlemen's Attire)


Entrance to the main store

To start off the series of Steampunk Travelogue locations, I'll begin with some locales that I am personally familiar.  Starting off is one of my favorites, Blak Opal, actually has its own extensive Steampunk-themed sim, with a vast selection of Steampunk and piratical attire (covering a wide-range of Steampunk and associated endeavors).  



First floor, menswear (Piratically speaking!)

The BlakOpal mainstore is divided into two main areas, (gentlemen on one side, ladies on the other), but surrounding the mainstore are a large selection of supplemental shops and unique Steampunk builds.  The entire sim merits its own entry in the Steampunk Travelogue, but for the time being, I did wish to highlight one of the best stores to help those who are interested in the genre get their start.



Second floor, mens' Steampunk attire

The lovely Miss BlakOpal Galicia, (and her dashing business associate, Mr. Trilobyte Zanzibar) have provided  large selection of attire and additional items to not only provide a wide variety of men's (and ladies') wear, but also provide a free starter set of attire (for both men and ladies), and a physics package (for those interested).  By all means, BlakOpal Designs most certainly merits a visit from anyone involved with the Steamlands!  For more information, please visit this beautiful locale, at: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/BlakOpal/99/102/23



The SL Marketplace aether link is: https://marketplace.secondlife.com/stores/25

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Steampunk Travelogue: Goatswood (updated)


The entrance lobby to the train to Goatswood...

My first order of business upon returning to regular posting (and addressing the emergent backlog I have accumulated), is a visit to the newest Victorian / Steampunk location, Goatswood.  Not only is it unique as one of the few new Steampunk sims in the virtual worlds, but there are a few aspects which are being attempted, that after my lengthy time in the Steamlands, I have not seen before.  First, albeit not exactly new, Goatswood is not exclusively dedicated to Steampunk - other aspects of the genre focusing on the English countryside are in play, rendering Steampunk as an important part, but not the overarching raison-d'etre for the sim.  Unlike New Babbage, and to a lesser extent, Caledon and a few other remaining Steampunk sims in SL, Goatswood is not an urban environment.  It is actually a beautifully built pastoral English town, placing it a bit apart from the hustle and bustle of a major era metropolis (in the time frame of 1860 to 1900, per the notecards).



... where on can take the train to Goatswood!

A secondary aspect of Goatswood is the focus on roleplay.  While other Steampunk sims have had some episodes of genre role play (specifically referring to the New Babbage endeavors), this particular sim is built exclusively for this indulgence.  Kora Zenakova and Baal Zobel have taken their experience and background from their previous projects, including their current sims, the Kingdom of Sand and Venexia), and applied that expertise to Goatswood.  SGS meters (previously used on other sims to provide differing levels of interaction), unique groupings and associations for participants, and even some minor mystical aspects (not a fan of that part personally, but adding the "Orientalist" category is certainly era appropriate), all contribute to a unique role playing environment.



The village of Goatswood (its outskirts, anyways)

Being superlative designers and builders, Baal and Kora have crafted an extraordinary virtual environment with their latest work.  The attention to detail is apparent when one walks through the sim (though the crows are quite large - I'd hate to anger of murder of them)!  Even if one is not an active role-player, the normal three-day pass (obtainable at the train station), allows one to visit and experience the environment as an essentially "invisible" individual (with regards to interactive RP - though most everyone I've come across is helpful, as good manners are a forte of the genre)!



The map of Goatswood (which even the casual explorer will find useful)!

If one decides to involve oneself in Goatshead's RP, then at the bare minimum a SGS hud will be required (about L$400, but works on all SGS-based sims), era appropriate attire, and a bit of time if one wishes to read up on the background of Goatswood (recommend, but not mandatory).  As one participates in the RP, one ages, gains skills, and more - all covered in the sim introductory description.  For more information, do consider a visit to the SGS website, located at: http://goatswood.socionex.com/sgs/places.jsp... a landmark to the station, at: http://slurl.com/secondlife/neverlandx/35/50/2003/ ... and a bit more regarding Kora and Baal's previous endeavors at their main business website, located at: http://www.edreamfactory.com/



...and now back to by Guinness (virtual and real!)

And those updates:
The sim has been a spectacular success, in spite of my concerns some of the complexities of the storyline might detract new residents.  In fact, it has been a boon in attracting new RP, and engaging in unique structure (of which you'll have to visit on your own).  I will concede it takes a bit of adjusting, and I've had the benefit of my dear partner Breezy to hold my hand through the endeavor, but if one is looking for more than a simple residence, do pay a visit, and join a group (yes, there is a Steampunk (Industrialist) group, and last I heard, they are working to move some layabout gypsies so coal mining can begin - Yay for Industry!)

For an additional insight into Goatswood, do visit Mr. E. Pearse's blog, Through the filter of a Victorian Aesthetic  and his review of Goatswood, at: http://victorianaesthetic.blogspot.com/2012/12/exploring-grid-goatswood.html

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

The list of Steampunk venues in SL, starting 2013!



The list of Steampunk locations hasn't really changed much in the past year or so, with a few modifications, a few sims growing and/or shrinking, and a few undergoing construction.  The list below divides the locations into essentially three categories: Major Steampunk Venues, Commercial Steampunk Venues, and Steampunk "Ports of Call".  I've listed the SLurls for the "main arrival" location, and a small blurb by each one...


Major Steampunk Venues
The "Major Steampunk Venues" are locations which the overall theme of the sim is most certainly Steampunk (in some way or another), and the entire sim (or sims) is/are dedicated to the genre.  When one uses the term "Steamlands", generally it refers to one of the below locations:


New Babbage

  New Babbage Square  (Town Hall and Center of the City-State)
     http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Babbage%20Square/223/158/111
  Port Babbage  (Commercial Center of New Babbage)
     http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Port%20Babbage/128/128/86
  Wheatstone Waterways  (The Piermont Landing - The Social Center of the Steamlands)
     http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Wheatstone%20Waterways/72/67/107


Caledon

Caledon Oxbridge   (Award winning arrival center for those new to Steampunk)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Caledon%20Oxbridge/92/198/28
Caledon Victoria City   (Capital of the Independent State)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Caledon%20Victoria%20City/128/128/24
Caledon Sound  (Maritime Center of Caledon)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Caledon%20Sound/41/100/23


NeoVictoria
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/NeoVictoria/17/128/1001


Steelhead
Steelhead Main
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Steelhead/128/128/24
Steelhead Port Harbor
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Steelhead%20Port%20Harbor/120/141/48
Steelhead Shanghai
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Steelhead%20Shanghai/133/128/31


Mieville
Mieville Doyle
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Mieville%20Doyle/183/76/24
Mieville Asian Gardens
    http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Mieville%20Dickens/93/61/26
Mieville Twain (San Francisco)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Mieville%20Twain/141/95/25


Goatswood
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/NeverlandX/35/51/2003


Armada Breakaway
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Armada%20Breakaway/158/162/23


Whitechapel 1888

   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Timherry%20Island/204/239/24


Paris 1900
   http://slurl.com/secondlife/Paris%20Eiffel/25/147/25


Stainless Steam  

   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Villain/128/128/23


Titus Groan   (Gay Friendly Steampunk Locale)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Titus%20Groan/172/128/24


Haven Township
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Solace%20Haven/231/207/21


Rosser's Landing
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Rossers%20Landing%20II/128/128/22


Safe Haven Estates (Furry Friendly Steampunk Destination)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Lone%20Heart%202/20/85/22



Commercial Steampunk Venues
There are merchants in the Steamlands who have taken their work (and merchandise) to a new level within the genre, and have a dedicated sim (or major portion of a sim), to Steampunk.  Often a magnificent site to behold, if one goes shopping at their main store, it is quite a treat!


BlakOpal
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/BlakOpal/98/102/23


The Looking Glass
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Horizon%20Dream/20/24/27


Tesla Isle (UnZipped, Steampowered Nuts Mainstore)             http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Tesla%20Isle/126/120/24


Curio Obscura Mainstore
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Business%20District%20Foxtrot/224/202/30


J.D. Mechanical Toy Factory
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Forgotten%20City/183/23/320


Mythopoeia (The Curious Prim Mainstore)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Mythopoeia/69/26/40


Golden Oriole Mainstore
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Verdigris/75/68/70


Sara Steam Technology
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Curlew%20Waters/216/15/54


Port Kasra  (Mall Venue)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Kasra/129/133/602



Steampunk Ports of Call
Not every location is dedicated to Steampunk in its entirety  but there some locales which are outstanding Steampunk gems, but do not take an entire sim... and very likely only a small portion.  But quality overrides quantity, so the locations below certainly merit mentioning!


Builder's Brewery
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Builders%20Brewery/128/160/23


Oroborus Clockwork Lounge
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Custard%20Developments/193/139/1992


The Steam Rose (Steampunk Dance Club)
   http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Chillium/177/80/1596


...and one more category I will add (belatedly), is Steampunk Photographic Locations.  Though I don't have any at the moment, there are locations in SL, which may not have much at all to do with Steampunk directly, but are outstanding for photographs, and will be added as time continues and the list of Steampunk Locations grow.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Cracking open the Steampunk Travelogue in preparation for the New Year!



After surviving the apocalypse of 2012, I figured I'd work towards consolidating and revamping the plenitude of blogs I have in one form or another.  While doing a bit of analysis  I was surprised the the amount of traffic the Steampunk Travelogue still has over a year of inactivity.  Additionally, some things have changed, while others have not... but I figure at least a monthly (or so) review of the existing Steamlands as they currently exist (in conjunction with the sister-blog, the Steampunk Shipyard), is in order.  I'll be starting with posts and SLurls of existing locations (yes, there are many more than listed on the SL Locations site), and go from there.  If one does know of a location that I may have overlooked, please do let me know, so the grander Steamlands can pay a visit - thank you!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Steampunk Travelogue: NeoVictoria


As those who are familiar with Second Life, many sims come and pass, often without acknowledgement of their hard work of their creative teams.  Some have worked hard and have established themselves as steadfast destinations of the Steamlands, carving out a unique niche from which they are able to flourish.  I have the good fortune of making the acquaintance of Miss Asil Ares, one of the many creative minds behind their exceptional works, which blend Steampunk and Machinima into unique endeavors.  In-between producing works, scripting, filming, running NeoVictoria's dedicated Ning, and many of the other demands on her time, Asil took time to answer a few questions for the Tribune...



 Steampunk Tribune: Could you tell me about NeoVictoria's origins?  


Miss Asil Ares: I’ve always loved Steampunk, and have spent my life devouring mythology, fantasy and science fiction, so when I dreamed about creating a world, it was those kinds of images that came to my mind.  I've also played roleplay games since I was a kid and wanted the possibility of a community whose roleplay wasn’t lost once the scene was over.  So NeoVictoria is very much a mixing of those themes and desires.



I think of the fae (or Sidhe) through the prism of the oldest of the stories and not the Magic or the White Wolf games which so many Second Life players consider authoritative. In the Eddas, we're told of the nine worlds (two of which are ruled by fae of the light and dark variety).   In the history of those ancestors, when their gods (the Aesir) were destroyed in apocalypse (Ragnarok), the bridges between the nine worlds collapsed and the cosmos was divided, allowing the age of man to began. In the dimension of NeoVictoria, however, the Sidhe did not fade from our sight ...the question becomes, why not?

In our fantasy realm, the queen of the dark elves saw the fall of the Aesir and withdrawal of the Vanir as an opportunity; she refused to fade ...instead she made her peace with this change in humankind's fortunes and harnessed us to serve her. Along the way, she has made many compromises, not the least of which is embracing our technology and using the old power-places in new ways.


[Brigid Ashwood's evocative "Locust Queen," is the 'official' portrait of The Queen and is used with the permission by the artist.]

This is why her Empire, Pax Britannica writ large, remains in the mechanical age of steam. Humankind, by entering into a vassal system with the fae received benefits (long life, a certain freedom from disease), but our science and technology is stagnant. Rather than harnessing the power of the atom, these people have learned to use magic …even to go so far as capturing the souls of men or the spirits of elfish prisoners to power their machines. There are no star-ships, but portals that link the worlds. No nuclear reactors to fill the cities with light, but golden spherical prisons beneath her cathedrals where supernaturals are milked for their innate power. For that is what humankind does …we use the resources of our environment to serve our needs; but here …in this reality …our fecundity is held in check by a nature that knowingly uses us. Humankind is her army, pouring forth through portals opened to conquer world after world in her name. We are legion, but we are also leashed.




The Empire is vast and contains thousands of planets.  The heart of the Empire is old Earth and that is where the Queen and her court live. However, NeoVictoria is not Old Earth.  Its a tiny planet in the Vico III galaxy, far from the seat of power; its full of ruffians and characters of questionable pedigree.  Chinese have a saying, "The sky is high and the emperor is far away" ...that's how a place like NeoVictoria can exist.  Neo is at the edge of The Empire's territory ...a backwater ...it holds no strategic importance and is, perhaps, almost forgotten.  All societies need places like this ...places where people who can't work within the framework of civilization can exist.  Its tolerated by design, for its rulers understanding that all pressure-cookers need escape-valves.



The Physical Construction

The NeoVictoria Project exists in several places.  We have a community portal on the NING platform that chronicles the work our members do and a two-SIM estate in the virtual world of Second Life where people roleplay together.  When you first teleport into the Second Life simulation, you're on a skyplatform far above the land level where the roleplay occurs.  The Skymall is an out-of-character place where players can learn about the project, watch our machinimas, shop for period dress, weapons and gadgets, take photos, practice weapons and enjoy occasional out-of-character parties in the skyclub.



The land-level is where the roleplay happens and that space is always in-character. NeoVictoria is an adult simulation, players must be at least 18 years old in real life to play here. While not dystopic, we are a "dark" roleplay simulation. Demons, vampires, lycanthropes, creatures from other planes, rapists, serial killers & similar creatures roam the streets. This means *characters* often act in aggressive, predatory, criminal and/or plain uncomfortable ways.  We have an observer's tag people can wear, if they want to visit but not roleplay. We ask that observers be respectful of the work and dress to the theme (Gothic, Victorian, Steampunk).  There are free costumes on the skymall level if people don't have appropriate costumes of their own.




The Steampunk Tribune: There are numerous Steampunk sims in Second Life... What sets NeoVictoria apart from the rest?

Miss Asil Ares: Our commitment to machinima. The ultimate goal of NeoVictoria is to create a virtuous circle where role-play becomes filmed story and we support our machinimatographers with in-world tools and website resources.  The Machinima Tools  building on the skymall level has an in-world tutorial for the BijoCom Construction System (this is a prim-based tool that allows machinimatographers to control their camera in specific ways) and is the in-world home to the Second Life Machinima Artists Guild (http://slmachinimaarts.ning.com/). Our website has its own Machinimatographer's group to support productions.  So far, we've had eight machinimas made for the NeoVictoria project and all are streamed within the NeoVictoria estate in Second Life and on http://www.neovictoria.net.



Tales from NeoVictoria: The Iron Rose
Description: Sidhe, shades, dJinns, demons ... humans, werebeasts, dragons, vampires ... supernatural creatures off all ilk are here and these are our stories.  Visit NeoVictoria, the  roleplay simulation with the machinima twist!  Dark roleplay, steampunk style.
Parcel Page: http://world.secondlife.com/place/4e0ffc83-b1ce-05ce-922f-14f88c37e72a
SLUrl: http://slurl.com/secondlife/NeoVictoria/12/165/703
YouTube Link: http://youtu.be/ZOU5EeoU_PM



NeoVictoria presents Cammy Teardrop's No Monsters But Ourselves
Description: This machinima by Cammy Teardrop won the 2011 NeoVictoria Machinima Contest.  Visit this parcel to see it and to learn more about dark roleplay, steampunk style!
Parcel page: http://world.secondlife.com/place/976cb732-2fc3-0c4f-b667-30a7d3680669
SLUrl: http://slurl.com/secondlife/NeoVictoria/10/189/703
Vimeo URL: http://vimeo.com/24309013



NeoVictoria presents Tikaf Viper's The Kiss 2
Description: This is Tikaf Viper's submission for the 2011 NeoVictoria Machinima Contest.  Its based on our roleplay.
Parcel Page: http://world.secondlife.com/place/857b1f2f-72de-0c59-9208-1ac1ccd69203
SLUrl: http://slurl.com/secondlife/NeoVictoria/11/201/703
Vimeo URL: http://vimeo.com/23553777



Tales from NeoVictoria: Demoria Arrives
Description: Using the immense powers the Cathedral of Air and Darkness harbors, Manes seeks to bring over his lost love and wife from his home universe to NeoVictoria.  >> This machinima was created from our roleplay and made Linden Lab's October 2011 Month of Machinima award program!
Parcel Page: http://world.secondlife.com/place/c15d7f1c-36d5-b217-6bb1-d426b1dc0237
SLUrl: http://slurl.com/secondlife/NeoVictoria/12/91/703
YouTube URL: http://youtu.be/Ba3LhaUg_LA



Tales from NeoVictoria: The Kiss
Description: But what if dreams came true? >> This Steampunk love story was made from our roleplay.
Parcel Page: http://world.secondlife.com/place/cd73cbac-2a23-e5c3-cab1-00313dc0849f
SLUrl: http://slurl.com/secondlife/NeoVictoria/12/79/703
Vimeo URL: http://vimeo.com/10341449



Tales from NeoVictoria: I Will Find You
Description: Friend yearn to reconnect after eons apart. This steampunk love story by Lilac Collas was made from our roleplay.
Parcel Page: http://world.secondlife.com/place/40b7efee-4c94-9b73-ca48-7e7849da5ff6
SLUrl: http://slurl.com/secondlife/NeoVictoria/10/66/703
Vimeo URL: http://vimeo.com/24858685




Steampunk Tribune: What are the most notable part of your sim (e.g. architecture, events, etc...)?

Miss Asil Ares:  On Machinima SIM, we have the Machinima Tools building on the skylevel and a CCS-enabled maze on the land level that people enjoy.



In-world Premiere of "The Kiss, by Miss Asil Ares

On NeoVictoria SIM, we have our fantastic skyclub and on the land-level, the Cathedral of Air and Darkness dominates.  This 3,000+ prim build touches the cloud layer and it an integral part of the world-story, containing many unique elements, scripted elements and original builds.



Steampunk Tribune: Are there regular event which people can visit and enjoy your sim?

Miss Asil Ares: We usually have a least one event scheduled every week.  Sometimes its an out-of-character party or an in-character event.  We post scheduled events to our website (http://www.neovictoria.net) and send notices via the in-world NeoVictoria Roleplay Group (http://world.secondlife.com/group/b1595e47-0dce-5de8-9707-656562923a0d).



Steampunk Tribune: Is there anything else you'd like to mention about NeoVictoria?

Miss Asil Ares: We use the Community Combat System (CCS) as a roleplay tool; I cannot stress this enough, for us CCS is a tool to aid the roleplay, we are NOT a first-person-shooting type combat SIM.  You do not have to wear the meter to roleplay in Neo unless your roleplay is violent.  The CCS meter is free (there a givers on the skylevel) and we do periodic training on how to use.



NeoVictoria has a lot to offer and sometimes new players find it overwhelming.  With that thought in view, we designed an online brochure which gives a brief overview (a "wearable' version is available in-world). If people have questions, they can contact me directly (asilemail-neovictoria [at] yahoo [dot] com) or speak with one of our staffers in-world.

My thanks to Miss Ares for a comprehensive insight to NeoVictoria, and to learn yet more about NeoVictoria, please consider visiting...

The Neo-Victoria Ning, at: http://neovictoria.ning.com/