baker Blinker's Weblog

First and Second Life at least.

New Island!, 21 October 23, 2008

Filed under: Nautilus City — baker Blinker @ 6:57 am
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Satisfied that he’d seen all of the important, original structures of the central city, Baker Bloch decides to fly down the great canal one more time… past the rows and rows of identically shaped and sized houses surrounding the central Citadel pool on all sides…

…through the massive gelded gate and then past the bathing/swimming pools now filled more with avatars than sea serpents most likely… past the giant chessboard and pieces that perhaps are movable now and have been employed already in a number of hotly contested games…

…past the leaning Magellen Linden owned boring machine lying idle and salient against the backdrop of the island’s highest hill…

…past the majestic temple of the dolphins, complete with its red crystals and giant golden monument to a mysterious feminine island presence.


Further and further he flies, beyond the end of the island, but not stopping until reaching the end of the SL virtual world itself in this direction.

Only then does he look back to glimpse the slightest hint that the huge island even exists.

Baker Bloch knows that when he returns it will be much changed, for tomorrow (at that time) the bidding wars begin for available properties. From this day forward it will not be just a “virgin” Linden made island but a Linden + Resident made island. A symbiosis is about to take effect, for better or for worse.

Goodbye original Nautilus Island!

THE BEGINNING?

 

New Island!, 20

Filed under: Nautilus City — baker Blinker @ 6:54 am
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Almost next to the Citadel’s central temple is this ampitheatre of considerable proportions, capable of holding well over 100 avatars upon rough guess.I wonder what kind of theatre the original inhabitants enjoyed at this venue? Or was it instead a place of war and battle? Baker Bloch hoped not, but the swords and spears in the Citadel pool just below painted a picture of a more violent culture than he perhaps wished for.

Ahhh! Now red crystals near the center of the city. The pattern is broken at last!

Mysterious ground swells above the interior walls.

And then another, smaller open air temple to the immediate west of the central crystal temple of this area. (the ampitheatre, btw, lies to the immediate south of the same). But there’s nothing within this time except for a giant slab of a table with matching seating. Maybe a place for banquets?

Next: The End?

 

New Island!, 19

Filed under: Nautilus City — baker Blinker @ 6:52 am
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Since he’s on the edge of the raised central area anyway, Baker Bloch decides just to run the entire perimeter of the island’s central, circular area, just to get a better feel for the scope of the interior city.

Convincing evidence for seismic activity dots this perimeter, such as these displaced slabs obviously weighing many tons apiece.

But there are also still intact objects of a much more fragile nature placed at the wall as well, seeming to imply that the seismic eruptions may be in the past. Perhaps these same upheavals sunk the part of a former population center positioned to the island’s immediate north, the seabed closest to the central city.* Might the two have been joined at one time? But if so why did that part sink while this remained many meters above the overall flat island surface? Has the raised part of the city been somehow rendered earthquake-proof, perhaps, as HBA speculates in one of his comments to my Nautilus Island related posts, through the energy of the giant pink crystals themselves?? It makes interesting food for thought.

More seismic wave evidence here at a different point on the wall’s top.

Back to the center.

* In rechecking Baker Bloch once again, Esbum Michigan finds that most of the ruins in the seabed to the north of the island are actually positioned to the northeast of the central circular city. Just fyi.

 

New Island!, 18

Filed under: Nautilus City — baker Blinker @ 6:38 am
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I apologize to any person or people that have attempted to read my Nautilus City series all the way through and have reached this textual dead end. I’ll try to remedy that this afternoon. One thing that happened in the meantime is a new split between my 2 galleries, as I’ve explained in subsequent posts on this blog. That’s taken a lot of time, but I think the effort has paid off. Now to finish this unfinished business…

Baker Bloch steps out of the Citadel temple into the large, circular city spread out all around it. All the houses are identical to those around the harbour on the west side of the island, and in the same 3 tints of magenta, yellow and blue.

Some more views of the temple from some of the nearby buildings and walkways.

This stunner of a crystal cluster, with the central one topping 45 meters, is found about a sim due north of the crytal temple’s center. Same color crystals as found inside the due south temple as well — pink again. So the pattern is holding out that we find pink crystals in the center of the island, more purple crystals to the west, and then the deep ruby red ones to the east. Don’t have a clue what this means, but I did note that pink is pretty close to red-violet, which would be the hue of the color wheel between purple and red. So for whatever reasons, there’s kind of a progression of crystal colors from violet to red as we move west to east across the island.\

Also I should mention here that there’s 4 more of those Minoan style snake goddess statues surrounding this high cluster of pink crystals, 2 on the west and 2 more to the east. Perhaps interestingly, all are facing away from the crystals in this case, unlike in the Citadel temple to the immediate south.

Next: running the high circle.

 

New Island!, 17

Filed under: Nautilus City — baker Blinker @ 5:47 am
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Baker Bloch then ascends to the next level of the temple featuring this alcove framed by two more of those snake goddess figures.

In one corner is a seat-less table on which a checkboard sits, but with black and white squares and also pieces instead of the normal black and red ones.

In the opposite corner we find the counterpart for this in a chess board, this time with the squares colored the normal chess-y black and white but with the pieces themselves colored black and gold. There’s also a central table of this alcove area (not pictured here) positioned between the two with the games, and with its own central object: a decorative black/gold/white pitcher.

As you can also tell from the snapshot below, the 2nd level of the temple is open in the middle, with the top of largest and most central crystal from the cluster below poking its way above the balcony level here.

Then it’s on to the highest level within the temple itself for Blochs, where he gets a really good view of the rays emitting from the crystals going up and through the large opening in the domed ceiling.

View looking down on same. Yes this is definitely a CENTER.

Next: big BIG crystal.

 

New Island!, 16

Filed under: Nautilus City — baker Blinker @ 5:45 am
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… The Temple, which can be considered the centerpiece of the whole island, I suppose. So I thought it should be covered in some depth in this little series of mine. Baker Bloch enters the lower level of the temple through a secret panel connecting it to the bottom of the central Citadel pool where he just came from. The sliding panel at the top of the chute is a full 56 meters above the bottom; quite a climb.

In the center of the floor he entered was found this amazing cluster of large, pink crystals, the same color as the much smaller examples in the boat at the bottom of the Citadel pool. So first he finds ruddy red or ruby colored crystals in the east of the island, purple colored crystals in the west (harbor area), and now pink in the center (Citadel area).

The decorations and statues are pretty amazing here. Two golden statues called “Mythic Minoan Goddesses” in their descriptions direct their intense stares at the central pink cluster from opppsite sides of the sunken part of the floor. Both clasp in their pairs of raised hands the necks of identical vipers of some kind, trusting their rather rigid bodies forward, as if they were swords almost — at first Baker Bloch thought they were swords, until he examined them closer and saw the viper heads basically hidden by the hands from a front view. The outfit of each is also apparently open breasted, with the breasts emphasized by the framing snakes on each side. A small cat sits on what appears to be a jeweled helmet covering the head of each as well. Also perhaps worth noting is the square shaped clasp (whatever) in the center of the figures, at around the navel level.*

Here are details of what appears to be perhaps a fresco on the walls of the raised floor around the central sunken area. I don’t know whether the two objects here are supposed to be some kind of flowers or maybe a combination of volcanos and flowers together? The flowers in the fresco do look suspiciously like tiger lillies, which is kind of freak’n out Esbum Michigan at the moment. She’s, once again, checking behind Baker Bloch for correct object descriptions, and so on.

Details of light or torch next to this fresco.

And a better view of one of the snake goddess figures.

Here’s another fresco found on this level depicting dolphins, found in imagery on other parts of the island as well, especially the temple on its eastern tip (formerly known as the “crystal temple” in this series).**


Next level!

* Ok, so I did a little research and found this article in wikipedia about snake goddesses, and specifically tying them to Minoan culture. The statues in the temple here seem directly based upon the mentioned figurines found in Cretan archaelogical sites, such as in the picture displayed in the wikipedia article. However, one little difference found is it appears a rabbit sits on the goddess’ head in wikipedia instead of the cat in the Citadel temple.

** In flickr I also found this picture of a dolphin fresco from the Minoan palace of Knossos… I think I’m picking up a theme here.

 

New Island!, 15

Filed under: Nautilus City — baker Blinker @ 5:40 am
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Blochs takes the tact of breaching the inner sanctum of the island by an underwater route. That is, he submerges into the canal to get to the central pool. This turned out to be an intuitively creative choice.

Here’s he just entering the gate/door via this means. He looks back toward a bouncing jellyfish just outside the door’s reach.

The sea life basically evaporates in the passage until he reaches the inner, central pool, about a sim’s walk from the giant gelded door.

When Blochs comes upon another set of objects at the bottom of this dead-center pool , he thinks: wow the SL mystery lovers are going to have some theories about this! Because here is another small, ruined boatcraft, common in the waters of the island, but with some twists this time: this one has an actual, tattered sail still partially attached to it, which may mean it is of more recent orgin that all the others (wouldn’t you think?), *plus* some other objects in the immediate area, including a sword stuck in the sea floor, along with a partially exposed cluster of pink crystals sitting within the perimeter of the small ship.

Actually, Esbum Michigan is, right now, in the ship’s area, rechecking Bloch’s observations and data, and is finding additional objects in the proximity, including a brass colored dish, a number of mostly buried goblets, and then a sword sticking into the ground as well about 10 meters to the southwest.

But he/she is finding more… apparently Blochs needs to make a return trip to this place! I’ll get to that asap.

Blochs *did* notice these mysterious bubbles being emitted just beside the spear (which he also did see but didn’t take a snapshot of). Meaning? As usual: unknown.

And then this hole in the wall, called the Citadel Wall Door in the description. Baker Bloch doesn’t remember the spears in the wall and near the wall in the ground when subsequently passing through this hole. He must have been transfixed by the latter.

Inside the hole…

… leading up, up ,up to….

 

New Island!, 14

Filed under: Nautilus City — baker Blinker @ 5:19 am
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More shots from the quite large area of underwater ruins north of the island and its central circle. I think Baker Bloch wants to create a map of these ruins sometime, perhaps quite soon.

… as well as cataloging some of the sea life in the area, like this squid seemingly on a mission in this snapshot. Baker likes the way the sea life, however threating they seem in appearance, pay only the slightest attention to his presence, if that. Very benign and docile — even the sharks!

Another colorful group of plants and sea creatures. No sculptures to be found here, though (that’s apparently the bow of an old ship projecting above Baker’s head here).

Having combed the northern sea fairly well, Blochs flies to the vast door of the island’s inner circle. It’s time to go within… no more delaying.

But first, he decides to set his draw distance way out to 512 meters, just to get an idea of what he’s in store for. Yes, he discovers it’s an actual city built around that inner, circular pool, with definitely some interesting looking builds to yet explore.

Next: Baker Bloch “inside” now

 

New Island!, 13

Filed under: Nautilus City — baker Blinker @ 5:16 am
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As I’m writing the text for these posts, more pictures are showing up on the web concerning Nautilus City. I’ll get to that in a moment.

I did have a chance to peruse the large amount of comments made concerning the announcement of Nautilus City and the upcoming auction of land on the official Second Life blog. Interesting that by far the largest percentage are negative in tone, although many do speak admiringly of the builds themselves. I think one common error in the the comments speaking negatively on the subject is the actual amount of land for sale. It might be 80 sims total in the complex (which I doubt), but there are only about 20-25 *land* sims (adding all the land up together), and of that, less than 1/2, if I’m estimating right, will be up for sale. So as others point out, this is just a drop in the bucket of total mainland property. Setting aside political and economic necessities for a minute, I do believe that Linden Lab is looking toward the future in this build, and attempting to correct obvious mainland problems (plus, as I’m understanding now, some of those connected with the fairly recent opening of the smaller Bay City area attached to the old Sansara continent). Admittedly, even in my limited experience in SL I can tell this is not going to be a perfect situation. Personally I would not buy property that doesn’t allow any type of terraforming, especially if the land is totally flat. I understand this option has been greatly abused on the mainlands but I would instead favor more an approach taken by Azure Islands, and only allow terraforming to a certain height and depth. Also making each and every piece of land the same size, and all square, in combination with the flatness, is going to take away additional possibilities of creativity and diversity among the resident’s builds. Plus the inability to join land. Double prims is a certainly a nice benefit, though.

But in saying all this, I still applaud the effort. I have much less problem with the Lindens creating a built in mythology around the sellable land. I think that’ll be one of the more interesting things to see develop: how the resident’s builds blend in with these already existing and quite marvelous builds. I would find it to be a challenge to erect something next to what I’m calling the crystal temple on the eastern end of the island — how would you compete with that? And, perhaps most importantly, you have *more protected land* because of this. What’s really to complain about in this respect? No, I don’t think creativity will be limited in that way, but just in the way the sellable properties are set up, and the restrictions involved. I will also be interested to see how skyboxes develop in the region, or if people do their more creative work up there while remaining more conservative on the ground level.

I do think they either need to rename the island or the continent immediately to the north, though. One should not be Nautilus. 🙂

So let’s take up where we left off in Baker Bloch’s island exploration. He’s now just past the harbor area, heading north along the coastline again.

This is the second lighthouse of the harbor area, the one immediately east of the 2nd, more dilapidated Poseidon statue (not seen in snapshot).

A nice, if narrow strip of woods leads Baker Bloch to this northwest corner of the island.

SNAPSHOT NEEDED.

But here’s where this particular leg of Bloch’s exploration gets quite interesting: on the seabed off the northern coast he’s now hiking around. Looking from a deck on this coast, Baker Bloch spied an spot of unusually diverse colors and activity on the seabed not too far off the shore, and goes to investigate.

But it is not until a number of snapshots are taken of the spot that Baker Bloch discovers, in its midst, almost hidden amongst the various swarms of fish and waving plants… another Poseidon statue! This is more a man-sized statue, like this one found before in this northern sea, but several sims to the east. But this one is in even more disrepair than any Poseidon statue found previously in his island exploring, whether man-size or giant size, because this one lacks a head. “Knocked off, never to be seen again I suppose,” Baker Bloch then thought.

He was about to leave and happened to turn around again to see another spot of emerald green just below the head-less statue. He went back and checked: yes, the head! He admired the way the Lindens postioned this head and torso in such a way that you had to be paying close attention to find both.



Next: Baker Bloch dries out again.