Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Second Life 2? Don't Panic

I have put this up as a short FAQ, as some of you may have heard rumours that “Second Life 2” is coming, and a hell of a lot of what is being said is conjecture or rumour.
I have researched SL2 and assembled the most pertinent questions people have with Official Linden Lab responses.

What is going to happen to Second Life (the original one)?
From everything I have read, nothing. It will be here for probably the next 5 years or more.
It’s not going anywhere, your inventories are safe, your sims are safe, there are no issues.
It will be developed further, improvements made and it will be continued to be supported.
This is not conjecture, rumour or me filling in the blanks. This is from Ebbe Linden (CEO Linden Lab).

What is Second Life 2?
SL2 is a separate development – a whole NEW grid based on vastly improved all new gaming engine. It is going to be developed parallel to Second Life – so as a user you will be able to use Second Life and Second Life 2, but you will most likely need to swap viewer to log in to SL2.
SL 2 is NOT going to replace Second Life.  Again, this is fact direct from Ebbe Linden.

Will SL2 be Sanitised?
One thing that people have been worried about is if SL2 be a PG rated. Ebbe Linden has confirmed that whatever you can do or is available in SL will be allowed in SL2. So adult products, Adult sims etc etc, all available.

Can you Transfer your Inventories between SL and SL2?
Right now, they are saying no although the project is in such an early stage of development it is very unclear. It doesn’t mean that in time some transfer won’t be possible.
In addition, you are NOT going to lose your Second Life inventory as the original SL isn’t being discontinued. The SL2 Inventory will be a blank sheet. More detail should emerge in time.

What are the Time Scales?
This part hasn’t really been commented on outside of saying 2015/2016 before release.
From what has been said, SL2 project is currently in its Embryonic stages – probably less than a few months old and is still in information gathering stages.
Lets be realistic here. We are probably a good 9-12 months away from a semi operational Beta and the beta itself could be 6-12 months before public release hence we are looking at a year or two.
However... even when you have a live system running, this is a blank sheet.
No sims, No products to buy... Nothing.  It is then up to creators to migrate to SL2. This process by itself could potentially take years to do before SL2 could even rival Second Life.
So realistically, designers and users shouldn’t really expect SL2 to be viable before 2017 at the very earliest.

Where does this leave Second Life, and its users?
In exactly the same place we were last month The fact is we know something we didn’t know before.
SL2 is now in build, but its going to be a while before we see it, let alone use it.
All we can do, is sit back, get on with things just like we did before knowing NOTHING is really going to change in the short or long term on Second Life and wait to see how things take shape with Second Life 2.