Saturday, April 27, 2013

Back to Minecraft Part 2

Earlier this month, I wrote about the continued activity in Nydia Tungsten's Minecraft servers, notably what Jasmine Dawn Shuftan had been doing. Far away from Angel's Village, she had been building a place of her own. Since I first wrote about it, her progress continued.

Jasmine's complex, seen from a log cabin on the outskirts. Note the archery tower to the right, with a flaming netherbrick roof for easy visibility at night.

Jasmine soon made a second archery tower, with the two connected by a glass and iron rail walkway.

 The first level of Jasmine's place, or "Jazzytown" as I dubbed it, which contains some stables. Here's some unusual cows I hadn't seen before, which she called "moo-shrooms."

Looking for monster spawners, she found this zombie one not far from the surface. Since they're not as bad as other hostile mobs, slow and they don't blow up on you, she had the idea of an experience farm.

So she surrounded it with fencing, and the zombies were trapped. She made a ladder, and built around it, including a glass ceiling. Now one could hack and slash the baddies and have the experience orbs fall into your lap, just waiting for new mobs and occasionally having to replace your sword.

And yes, that's my sword. Jasmine tossed me a few diamonds for one. Reminds me a little of being a "rune goon" in Runescape.

While digging her tunnel, Jasmine came across this place, which she named "Strussel Village." I later came back and added this nether portal for quicker access.

While digging the tunnel, Jasmine wanted to take a break, as well as get a few supplies. So we made this waystation that she later dubbed "Havenshire."

And this is where our marathon tunneling session ended, a village northwest of Angels that someone had built a wall around and improved. Not sure who made it or what name it was given. After that, Jasmine's main focus went back to Jazzytown.

While finishing the tunnel, digging west from Angels and south from the walled village, I came across a few obstacles, such as water when coming across rivers. So the way to go was lower, at least until it was past.

Ranchan's ship, due west of Angel's Village. The tunnel went under it, and I built an entrance next to the boat.

"And the twain shall meet." Finally Jasmine's subway from her place to Angel's Village was complete.

Jasmine showing off her place to a neighbor, Skylark and friend, who made their own place north of Angels, and east of Jazzytown. Note the signs showing how far it is to Angels and Strussel.

And Jasmine's latest creation: her "chicken plucker." The fowl in the upper chamber lay eggs, which fall through the water, into dispensers, which lay chicks into the lower chamber. When grown, a user can press the pistons to crush the birdies, "Buck-AWWKK!!" And one gets seperated feathers, meat, and sometimes more eggs.

Small irony it was built by a fox, "Colonel Sanders, eat your heart out!"

And that's it for now from the Angels server.

Bixyl Shuftan

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Back to Minecraft

By Bixyl Shuftan

I haven't mentioned too much about Minecraft lately. That doesn't mean things have been quiet there. Nydia Tungsten has continued to keep a presence there. Besides her original server, she also got a second one. This was of a variant of Minecraft called "Feed The Beast," which has more things to build. And "Angels Village" with the other builds was duplicated on it. Then Alynna Vixen and Skylark Lefarve got their own servers, and with another copy of Nydia's map became part of a group of realms which players could freely move from one to another. These were an upgraded version with slightly better graphics. Nydia's original "Vanilla" server was getting only a little traffic.

Then my partner Jasmine got into the act. After she had a talk with Nydia about Minecraft, she gave it a try and began building on her own. Unlike most of Nydia's friends, she preferred the original of Nydia's worlds, and so began leaving her mark there. Unlike myself, who set up a location not far from Angel's Village, Jasmine wanted to go far off. Earlier, Nydia had dug a tunnel about a couple miles long to encourage exploring. Jasmine went down that, and set up a place. With Nydia's help, a portal was set up and in the Nether (to those who don't know, a hellish-looking paraell world Minecrafters use to get resources and travel through as a shortcut) a tunnel was dug through to the Angels' Village own portal. Jasmine was in business.

 I've been going in time to time to check on Jasmine's progress and help her out. But she's done most of the work. She's expanded her original "safe haven" to quite a complex, with a few structures poking up onto the surface. We have done a little exploring. Going into a dungeon area, we stumbled across an abandoned library. The two of us together made off with well over a hundred books, to be used later for an enchanting room.

Thinking of Nydia's tunnel, she wanted to do one of her own. So we both began digging. Two players with iron pickaxes can dig pretty fast, so we made quite a bit of progress. We did find a village about a third of a mile away from Jasmine's place, which she named Streusel village after Nydia's partner Brandi Streusel. After a couple other stops along the way to get wood and other materials, we finally stopped at a large village most of the way over.

Jasmine plans to finish the tunnel, eventually. For now, she's gone back to improving her place, putting in underground gardens, an underground greenhouse with the sun shining through glass on the surface, animal pens, pastures, and an archery tower, taking down those pesky creepers from a distance. I pop back on occasionally, to help her out, work on the tunnels, and maybe work some on finishing the SL Newser office. The unfinished office was duplicated in all three locations, so it does seem I won't be bored for some time as far as Minecraft's concerned.

What's that hissing noise? Oh, great … *BOOM!!*

Bixyl Shuftan

Friday, April 5, 2013

A Tarot Reader in Second Life

By Grease Coakes

One of the things you may of heard in Second Life that there are people who offer tarot readings for various prices. Tarot cards hold mysticism and mystery and maybe even seem exotic to some people. Tarot readings have been used for a few hundred years in Europe to show a probable outcome to a question by a layout of cards.

My friend Amehana Reikaz (Amehana Ishtari) has done many Tarot readings for me for a moderate price of 300L per reading. I joked one time that she did so many readings for me that she’s problary rich by now. Today (April 3rd) I asked her what my next move should be concerning my children’s book. Lucky timing on my part that when I imed her she said sure.

So I met her in her hang out and asked what I should do now to market myself as an author? Amehana’s first card was the 10 of swords in the spirit position saying that would have to make a sacrifice to further my writing. When I typed my ideas out loud it made sense that I would have my character Ginny Griffin do something that I would not do. That’s a huge sacrifice.

The next card was the empress which Amehana explained as thus, "We have the Empress inverted for the Air position actually. The pregnant empress' robes flow away like the river she's beside, while talking to a white lunar/death dragon. This card for me is often about strength and learning to work within cycles." Maybe it showed I needed strength to move forward and same with my children’s book character that was facing a difficult and unpopular decision.

The next card was the Knight of cups came up inverted or also upside down. I wasn’t sure what that meant, but Amehana explained that to me as two sides of a coin or yin and yang. Meaning that my main character Ginny and a newer character are two opposites.

When I was talking back and forth with Amehana, she was being helpful as I was talking out my ideas for my next book. Amehana is a writer herself so it made perfect sense that I picked her as a tarot reader. When I talked about my book with her and what ideas I had she drew the next card, "The water position has The Sun upright. Although this is traditionally the area of emotions and the psychological state, we have the solar dragon burning brightly. Very active once the fire starts it will take off quickly."

I picked up on that right away meaning the story itself will be easy to write when I get started, but I said for now I’m feeling lazy after writing Dragon Heart’s story. Amehana said that’s understandable. Next question I asked will I run into someone to take my book to the next level. Here’s what she had to say, "The Eight of wands shows a flight of dragons all carrying wands. When you find the right people, they will help. Word of mouth will be important. So make certain to provide a gentle reminder that reviews are appreciated in your back matter."
Sounds positive and we both agreed that when I write the sequel which shown by the sun shouldn’t take too long I have a stronger stance as a writer and author. I thanked Amehana for her help and she encouraged me and said you’re welcome as we talked for a little bit afterwards.

Tarot readings even after a few hundred years seem like an interesting way to see what’s going on around you. With a little critical thinking it shows what you should be doing towards whatever goal or what will happen soon. Keep in mind though it’s best to get Tarot card readings from your friends or someone who seems legitimate. 300L is generally the average price for a Tarot card reading (in my experience). If someone asks for a ridiculous amount of Linden it might be a scam. A tarot reading from a friend however may be very insightful though.

Grease Coakes

Monday, April 1, 2013

ApRiL fOoL!!

Happy April Fool's Day from Second Life Newser.

May it be full of merriment, joy, and of course general foolery.

For last year's April Fool, Click Here. For 2011, Click Here. For examples of SLN's April Foolery, Click the following: 2010, 2009, and 2008

Bixyl Shuftan