Friday, 16 February 2007

All the M's - Myst and Mazda

After blogging about the newly launched Myst Online: Uru Live MMOG (and I'm beggared if I'm going to keep typing that out all the bloody time) I thought I'd check out the island in Second Life, which is also open for business. I am still Mystified (arf!) why Gametap did not open this sooner, as it is full of the many videos that have been available on their website for some time, and whets the appetite nicely (if this is the kind of thing you'd go for). Having taken a fairly rigorous and vigorous stroll through the island, I can hazard a guess - it would have been a nightmare to build and debug.

This is a highly complex and enjoyable build, that attempts to convey the Myst look & feel as best it can, given the constraints of the SL world - and a very decent job the builders have done of it. I would have liked more interactivity, and maybe a puzzle to solve would have been a good idea (thinks: maybe there was one and I missed it), but I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. And when I like something, I tend to take heaps of pictures... :-)

The other "M" is Mazda, who launched their Hakaze concept car, ahead of its debut in RL at the Geneva show, on their Second Life island (Nagare) yesterday. I visited the island today and confess to being somewhat underwhelmed. My "whelm quotient" would have been improved if there had been more to the island - but it seems to consist of a movie, a freebie car and a track - and not much else. I guess the track could be fun to drive, but it all felt a bit sparse. Maybe I've been jaundiced by the report in Second Life News Network, which suggests that the actual launch itself was not exactly the slickest piece of PR seen in SL in recent months (or days... or hours... come to that).

If you still hunger for info on the Hakaze - then here is a review of the real thing. If you have problems with that link, try this one. All in all, gets a great review.

A final thought? Why "Nagare"? After a bit of hunting I found this reference to another Mazda concept car, called "Nagare". Come on, guys - it's a bit obscure isn't it? If I was trying to attract people to your island in SL, I think I might be bold and call it "Mazda Island"... or be really experimental and avant garde, and call it "Mazda Concept Island". But "Nagare"? It's not exactly going to bring in the passing trade.

Tip of the Day (and some free[?] consulting) - it's a good idea to call it "Nagare" while in development and under wraps, but you should rename it just prior to launch. That'll be 5000L$ please... I lied when I said it was free.

UPDATE - Later that day
OUCH! I didn't know that humble pie would be so prickly, 'cos that's what I'm eating (only a tiny slice tho')! I went back to Nagare and have to conclude that I was over-influenced by the SLNN article. The place has a real human being [Alice] you can talk to - a distinct plus in my book, and still too rare in SL at the moment. That meant for a good chat about life, the Universe and Mazda concept cars. Suddenly, the experience is transformed from visiting a bare, sandy island (which it is) into visiting a place where you get a proper sense of communication. I employ the formula: SL=people=communication=a good thing.

Mind you, I think the car looks like a chrome-toothed yellow pig, but that's just my opinion. They are working on making the island searchable under "Mazda" - but as I do most of my island rambling using "Map" and "Search", I don't think this will help me much. So I stick by my 5000L$ comment above. And no, I didn't get my 5K bucks! But I got a free car, so that's OK!

PS: Tomorrow I hope to do another piece on UPMC. I talked about Pittsburgh some days ago, but I now have the info, courtesy of my chum, Caduceus. I will post rivetingly fascinating vignettes anon.

1 comment:

Alice Lundquist said...

Hey Aleister Kronos.

Thanks for the consulting. ;-) We named the island "Nagare Island" because this is not only the name of one of Mazda's Concepts but also Mazda's new design philosophy.
(You see it in the video on the presentation area on Nagare Island).

But there should be a Place which can be found if you search for Mazda. We will check it out.

Thank you for telling people about the island. ;) And for the nice chat we had.

Best regards Alice