Wilds of Organica this coming month at The Arcade!


Wilds of Organica is participating in The Arcade this coming month, and the prizes include twelve versions of an elephant avatar, including some costumed ones, just in time for Halloween!


There are six solid colour versions and six costumed versions, two of which are rares with 5% of occurring.

This item is L$100 per play and comes with full body mesh, controllable eyes and trunk, basic AO HUD. Again, you’ll have the option of trading transferrable versions in for mod/copy versions. The event isn’t open to the public yet, but will be accessible from Sept 1-30 via this SLURL. You can also join The Arcade – Gacha Events group as well as explore the various gacha yard sales to trade, buy or sell items if you wish! Please play responsibly and have fun!


Pink (left), Topiary (center), Circus (right)

Why depending solely on the LI system is a false equivalency for good modelling


I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately – i’m sure I’m not the first one to bring this up…

Land Impact, as it relates to mesh these days, seems to be the be-all and end-all to consumer products in the Second Life space these days. From the start, back in the closed beta days, there was always a lot of push and pull, trying to design the system so that users would be encouraged to design intelligently, effectively and efficiently. As it happens, costs were put in place to better reflect this (as compared to sculpts).

Prim equivalencies for normal prims and sculpts didn’t change – Linden Lab cited not wanting to break content as the reason for this and I could go in to some depth about how this was a bad idea. I also have scripter friends who would take issue even with that policy, given that it seems to be enforced inconsistently; from modelling/texturing/animating to scripting. Neither of these issues is here or there, as it pertains to this discussion though.

The point I’m making here is that Linden Lab attempted to encourage better content creation practices by encouraging the use of multiple Levels of Detail (LODs), physics models, and the need for efficiency in scripting of these items. The Knowledge Base goes in to some detail regarding this.

Essentially, it is possible to have a good looking model upload for a high LI, with no LOD or physics optimization, OR upload for a fraction of that LI by making clever use of the opportunities afforded by LODs and physics models.

An important part of designing a good model is being able to make comprimises in complexity in order to make the viewer experience better, while not sacrificing too much in the way of quality.

Note, here, that I make a distinction between a complex model and a quality model – the two are not necessarily the same.

For one thing, it’s incredibly easy to abuse the system provided in order to upload a highly complex model while maintaining an unfairly low LI. How?

Well, you can upload up to three LODs to every model you upload to SL. In fact, you probably should. The rule of thumb, as far as the LOD generator is concerned, is that the ‘high’ version should have roughly 25% the number of faces compared to the full version of the model. ‘Medium’ should be half that of ‘high’, and ‘Low’ should be half that of ‘Medium’. If you leave these as they are, you may get a low LI object, you might not. It depends on a few factors, including how complex the model was to begin with, but also how many discreet parts there are, as well as whether the item is rigged or scripted.

But what happens if you suddenly just tell the viewer to load the full version of the model, then use the lowest possible quality for all the LODs, and tell the viewer that a substantial physics model isn’t necessary?

Basically you end up cheating the system, possibly without even knowing it.

I recently noted a significantly slow and poor viewer experience while exploring, and the persons involved had done exactly this. This prominent venue has dozens of vendors and they all come in at 3LI. Offhand, not bad, you might think, and under normal circumstances you might be right.

But in this case, no. I was getting frustrated. If I was a customer who didn’t know any better, I might just chalk it up to a bad computer. To be honest I’ll admit here my desktop computer could probably use more RAM and an upgrade from my midgrade video card within the next year. I also run three screens for my daily workflow and my usual load of programs includes Photoshop, Blender and either Chrome or iTunes.  But the common user of SL probably has a crappier computer than I do and it’s always a good idea to design for the lowest common denominator.

I decided to try and diagnose what might be the cause of framerates approaching 2-3FPS, even with basic shaders turned off, draw distance cranked all the way down, avatar imposters turned on and to the most stringent setting. I took the advice of Drongle McMahon on the SL Forums, showing a way to turn on rendering info and in particular to ascertain triangle and vertex count for selected objects.

Upon closer inspection, the vendor had over 18000 triangles – 20000 vertices. For reference, most mid-sized mesh houses come in at under 4000 triangles. Most main character avatars in video games similar in appearance to SL come in between 5000-7000 triangles. A simple box prim has 108 triangles and you can even make a box prim less complex by using a mesh box instead (since SL’s box has 18 triangles per face and 6 faces), which would get you 12 triangles. So basically, one of these vendors was taking up roughly the rendering capacity of four or five mesh houses, two or three avatars, or potentially *thousands* of mesh box equivalents. Within a 2m by 2m space. And there are dozens of these same vendors all over the venue.

What’s worse is this particular vendor takes significant advantage of the LOD uploads. If you are having a hard time loading things and as a result reduce the object detail in your graphical preferences (or if you’re an advanced user and have changed your rendervolLOD settings to something fairly low), then you won’t be able to view this vendor in any way other than a) the full, high-poly model or b) a broken mess of the minimum number of triangles required to upload and match up to the high-poly model.

Whereas in other modern platforms, such as Unity3D, it may be commonplace to budget perhaps between 100K-300K polygons for an entire scene, in SL it is often difficult to stick within those boundaries even if you control and created the immediate surroundings yourself. Content creators often design their objects to be ‘the stars’ of the show, regardless of their overall importance or how many resources have already been expended in the environment. It does not help that the content creation community is generally poorly educated on the subject or willfully ignores the consequences of irresponsible design decisions, in the name of creating something pretty.

Let me get something straight here – I’m not saying ‘don’t make or sell pretty things’; what I am saying is make pretty, quality things. But be smart about it and consider what is possible as well as what is responsible to inflict on an unpredictable number of people.

There are many things a designer can do in order to create more efficient quality content.

– For the full version, model to create good edge flow, avoid using the uploaded model to create fine details which could otherwise be achieved using a diffuse or normal map. High-poly models can be used to help create cavity and normal maps, but should not be uploaded to Second Life.

– Create efficient and accurate LODs which not only cut down on vert count but which are at least (at the medium level) somewhat representative of the object at a distance, to allow users to see at a glance what they should be looking at, rather than requiring them to zoom in. Most modelling programs should allow you to collapse parts of your model without significantly affecting the UV layout. Some also have modifiers (such as Blender’s most recent Decimate Modifier) which do some automatic face reduction, within limits.

– Don’t ‘cheat’ the LOD system by uploading a high-poly model and crappy, non-representational LODs.

– Stop making excuses for poor content by saying more complex content is necessary for a high quality, immersive SL experience. 1) SL isn’t a Pixar movie. You can’t expect it to look that way and run to any reasonable degree. 2) Quality content can look great, even at lower levels of detail. Any good content creator should know that and should know how to do that.

– Look forward to, and PUSH, the Materials project. Coupling a quality, low-poly model with a great diffuse, normal and specular map is the best road towards creating great, efficient content.  A developers build is out for it already and it’s always a good idea for content creators to provide their feedback to the developers so that any bugs can be acknowledged and fixed quickly. It’s not on the main viewer stream yet, but development has been moving at a steady pace. In the mean time, it wouldn’t hurt to learn how to create normal and specular maps anyway, since you can bake normal and specular effects in to your diffuse map already and upload it as a flat file.

– Make use of the wireframe mode in SL at least once or twice to see how it looks in-world, zoomed in. If the model looks almost solid even if you’re zoomed in, YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG.

Spring is coming!

New to the shop this week are the latest in mesh plants…


Spring is near and these new mesh tulips are the perfect way to welcome it in!

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Ten varieties are available and closely modelled to reflect real varieties of tulips. Each package has three tulip shapes for a little variety. They each also come with a potted version for your convenience.  They feature solid textures, so no alpha flickering. They’re also 1LI per individual plant, 4LI per potted plant.  As usual, these are mod/copy/no transfer.

Available in-store here, or on the Marketplace!

2 days left on Four Walls Hunt + 2 Spring releases!

As discussed in a previous post, there are two more days left on Four Walls Hunt Round 2 – be sure to pop by before the end of the month in order to get a great deal on the Lore’s Den prefab!

While you’re here, be sure to check out two new releases, as detailed below:
The next instalment in spring flowers from Organica are these dainty but detailed mesh flowers! At 1 LI per piece, there are three shapes included to provide variety. Rez in your garden on their own or as complimentary units alongside the fields of lily-of-the-valley. Mod, copy, no transfer. Available in-world and on the Marketplace.


These new mesh cherry trees are stunning additions to any outdoor area; included are four different foliage options, plus a particle emitting version and a version for foliage change. Available in-world and on the Marketplace.

A Whiter Shade of Pale


This post is a bit late, but I should let you all know that Spruce Up Your Space is holding its last month this weekend and for its theme, ‘A Whiter Shade of Pale’, I’m offering the above artwork. It’s mesh, mod/copy, and 1LI at packaged size. Pick it up this weekend (IE: today and tomorrow) for only L$150 and be sure to check out the other SUYS shops’ offerings too! There are quite some excellent offerings this month.

Cheshire Cats hit Wilds of Organica for Halloween!

Yeah, it’s been about a week since the initial wave of kittens showed up, but given the impending festive costume season, I figured I’d put these out rather than wait for some new year 😉

So again, these are mesh kitten avatars that come with customizable eyes (with control HUD), whiskers, and tail.

Just as a heads-up: these are full-bright but they’re pretty dark to begin with. Play around with that full-bright checkbox to see what you prefer. Some interesting effects can also be found by making the avatar transparent.

These avatars can be picked up in-store and now on the Marketplace!

Organica reopens today! New releases, newly renovated sim!

After a full week of downtime, Organica is again open to the public!

Things are still settling in, but hopefully the new design will provide a pleasing experience!

Most, if not all of the vendors have been moved to the new shop space (the barn)  but the main grounds will still have vendors scattered about for easy shopping while exploring the sim. The following new releases are also now available!

Some of you have been asking for single versions of the Alder trees; today your wish is my command! These new trees are thinner, younger trees with updated foliage. The package includes green, red and frosted foliage, both scripted and unscripted. Available mod/transfer and mod/copy, available in-store! Shall be updated to marketplace at the end of the month.

This detailed mesh greenhouse has a 24.5x17m footprint and features baked lighting, open door concept and beautiful window space. Great for your plants or for furnishing and other every-day use.  Available mod/copy, available in-store!  Shall be updated to marketplace at the end of the month.

This barn has a 64x32m footprint, is highly detailed and perfect for your farm! It comes in a rezzer and is great for storing farmyard items, breedables, and more! Available mod/copy, available in-store! Shall be updated to marketplace at the end of the month.

 This stable has a 20x24m footprint and is ideal for use on a farm for most breedables.  Mod/copy, available in store! Shall be updated to the Marketplace at the end of the month.

As these items are all mesh, please note you do need a mesh-capable viewer to view and use.

Come on by Organica to see all the updates and explore!

See you there!

New Coleus plants + Rock walls now available

Brighten up your garden with these brilliant coleus plants!  Each one is 3LI with or without the pot, and sports vibrant hand-drawn foliage with realistic lighting and detailing. Ten varieties are available either individually or as a fatpack. Mod/copy/no transfer. Requires mesh capable viewer. ( Buy in Store ) ( Buy on Marketplace )


These rock walls have been requested somewhat regularly since i first started using them at Home Expo. While I wasn’t ready to offer them then, I’ve finished up the things I wanted to do with them and now make them available for you.

To use: Simply rez and move up against areas where you’d like a rock wall. Do note: these items do not have backsides in order to cut down on LI and reduce viewer resource use. To give these items a backside, consider duplicating and facing the other way, using other prims or backing these items up against terrain.

Available mod/copy/no transfer. Requires mesh capable viewer. ( Buy in store ) ( Buy on Marketplace )

Crocus updates

As of this writing, I have sent out updates for all crocus products, including the MMM exclusive blue.

I went through and redid all of the level of detail jumps to be more efficient and able to withstand zooming in and out.

Much thanks go to Zii Minotaur for valuable feedback; I only wish the Marketplace were better designed to inform merchants of new feedback, as this fix turned out to be a long time coming.

In any case, if you did not receive an update, please give me a shout!

More release news to come a bit later in the week; there will be some SUYS stuff and there are a few other landscaping items on the way!