robin wood

Simulation of the SL avatar's wireframe

Well, allow me to say, that I knew it! There of course are people out there who push the appropriation of Second Life (SL) beyond the customization possibilities provided by Linden Lab. Although SL lives from user created content, and although Linden goes a certain piece of way to encourage creative content creation and developer practices, all of those issues and features do not constitute game modding in the (read: my) strict sense. Game modding starts when the customizers’ practices become similar to those of the initial game-designers and -developers—when you get down to the ‘real thing’, beyond, or deeper than built-in features. My striving to create the Fantomas avatar have an anthropological goal, believe it or not, as I am in search of game modding practices concerning SL. Today I found Robin Wood’s website which features very good tutorials and tools like professional Photoshop templates for texturing an SL-avatar and his clothes. Robin’s templates are ‘the real thing’, way beyond what those provided by Linden Labs can do for you. Robin has gone for lengths, ripped the avatar apart, and shows the polygons, the seams where textures meet, has colour-coded all this and more, and finally conveniently translated all of it into .psd-layers. For inworld tutorials visit Robin’s place in Benten (17,105). From there I got his UV suit which my avatar currently wears—it consists of his templates as textures. Hence it not only does fit perfectly, but helps you to understand how the avatar is built, how it works, and how the textures are positioned.

Meanwhile I am close to liking this skin more than my blueish one. In a way it is an even more generic look than Fantomas’ blueish greengrey basic layer for all his metamorphosis’ in those trashy French 1960s movies. Plus it simply is tremendous fun to dance in this outfit, side by side with those beauties in the club where I earn my money for being able to pay for my uploads into SL. By the way, does this count as nudity in SL? And am I therefore not allowed to enter certain areas looking like that? ‘Cause in a way the skin unveils another aspect of the whole sex’n’beauty craze in SL, as it seems that Linden has used way more polygons to model the avatar’s ass than e.g. its upper arms … and indeed, strictly speaking geometrically interested, the ass looks way better than the upper arm. Interestingly enough until now nobody has commented on the thing—on the colour-coded wireframe skin, I mean, not on my ass … whereby I did not want to indicate, that there are no inworld comments concerning … ah, to hell with it, you already got me, I guess.

Simulation of the SL avatar's wireframe

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