A Giant Step Backward

Like everyone else, I have been anxiously awaiting the new avatars. Because every time new avatars have been released, they have been better than the ones before them. But not this time. Avatar shape creation in SL has just taken a giant step backward.

The female avatars are interesting, fascinating to watch, just like with any new toy. The hands are much prettier than previous avatars – that is a plus – they just look too big for the body.

But these mesh avatars are not attractive in face or form. Their skin and eyes are much like the starter avatar back in 2007, when I joined SL [remember Ruth?]. That was before residents started creating beautiful eyes and skin. And these shapes remind me of female steroid jocks. There is nothing soft or curvy about them. Worst of all, you cannot modify them. That is right, NO MOD.

The single most important thing we want in our avatars is the ability to modify our shapes. We want to make them look like us, or some idealized version of ourselves. So, we tweak our shapes for years, until we are satisfied with the shape, then we periodically tweak them a bit more.

Now, the guys usually get the short end of the stick when it comes to new avatar shapes. But, this time, they actually came out ahead. A couple of the male avatars are not bad at all. But, again, no mod?

The creature avatars are the best use of mesh for shapes. They do not need to be modified. Photographers will enjoy shooting them. But other than for photographs and role playing, I do not see these new mesh avatars as any type of improvement in our daily SL lives.

It is a good thing the classic avatars are still available. We need to always have a choice between the no mod mesh avatars and the modifiable classic avatars. Even though Linden Lab may have taken a giant step backward in avatar evolution, we will not.

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