For those who are not familiar with Second Life, it is an online virtual world where users can create and customize their avatars, explore various locations, socialize with other users, and participate in various activities such as shopping, gaming, and attending events. One of the fascinating aspects of Second Life is the level of creativity and innovation that users bring to the platform, especially in creating and designing various objects and gadgets.
Dispensers are one of the objects that have gained popularity in Second Life, especially among those who love food and drinks. Dispensers are essentially objects that give your avatar a specific item or animation when you click on them. The items can vary from food and drinks to various props, such as condoms, newspapers, or towels The animation can range from a simple static animation to more complex actions such as drinking or eating.
Back in the day, dispensers would give you the item, and you would have to manually attach it to your avatar, which was a bit time-consuming and could break the immersion of the experience. However, with the advent of newer technology such as Bento, dispensers can now self-attach the item to your avatar and even come with more advanced animations.
As a huge fan of Second Life dispensers, I’ve had my fair share of disappointments and pleasant surprises. For example, I reviewed the MadPea Smoothie dispenser a few months ago and was surprised to find that the smoothie went to my inventory, and the animation was poorly executed. I had higher expectations from MadPea, given their reputation for being innovative and creative in their designs.
At C88 April 2020 round, I was delighted to discover the Satie Coffee set from Fancy Decor, which had a coffee machine dispenser that looked fantastic. However, my excitement quickly turned to disappointment when I realized that the dispenser would deliver the coffee to my inventory instead of self-attaching it to my avatar. I found this to be a major letdown, especially in 2020, when newer technology allows for more immersive experiences in Second Life.
Dispensers from Lucas Lameth and Chic Chicca
Lucas Lameth and Chic Chicca are two other creators who regularly create dispenser, and are creator I often buy from.
I was excited to try the nachos dispenser from Lucas Lameth, but unfortunately, the Bento animation was poorly executed, and the corn chip was the size of a pizza.
The picture above involves a plate of nachos from Lucas Lameth that initially came in a “no mod/no copy” state. Translation: I couldn’t resize it even if I wanted to. But after I sent him a Notecard with my concerns, he kindly made some adjustments to it, and now it’s a lot more accommodating. There have been a few updates since then, but frankly, I’m not sure what they were for, other than the newfound ability to make it bigger or smaller.
However, even with Lucas’ modifications, the corn chip in my hand still looks like it could be mistaken for a small pizza, and the Bento animation leaves a lot to be desired. Instead of indulging in some virtual snacking, it looks like I’m trying to poke my own brain. Wake up brain, indeed.
The decorative nachos plate from Chic Chicca is a nice touch, but it’s just for show. It does come with a single self-animation, which is a nice touch for a picture maybe.
So, I gave up on the Nachos dispenser from Lucas – it was a total bust. Instead, I remembered I had bought his tea set on a whim, without even realizing it was a dispenser. I was just scrolling through Flickr, saw a pic of it, and thought, “Damn, that looks sweet!” But hey, at least I won’t be disappointed with lukewarm tea, right?
The textures for this set are absolutely fantastic and it even looks better than the lemonade set from Chic Chicca (the closest thing I have to compare it with).
Lucas’ set might look better, but the self-attached prop is a fail.
Chic Chicca’s tea set nails it with a realistic drinking motion that won’t make you feel like you’re getting a lobotomy, unlike the clumsy glass from Lucas.
When a creator sets the bar for creating food and drink dispensers, it becomes the new benchmark for others to follow. It’s like clinging to a flip phone when you can have a smartphone. Come on, people, let’s upgrade our food and drink dispenser game.
Last year, I reached out to Bazar when I purchased a dinner plate that could’ve fed a small village. Despite resizing the plate, the food remained gargantuan. Bazar’s response? Sorry, it can’t be fixed. It’s like some creators have the magic touch, while others are still trying to figure out how to make their food and drinks normal-sized. The mystery deepens…
In the world of Second Life, prims are the currency that matters more than gold. We are forever counting them and scrutinizing the price tag of every virtual item. Lucas’s tea set is a bargain with just 2 prims, while Chic Chicca’s lemonade demands a whopping 7 prims. And let’s not forget the nachos dilemma, where Lucas’s dispenser saves the day with only one prim, while Chic Chicca’s decorative plate, with its stunning realism, weighs in at 11 prims. It’s a tough choice, but in the end, we all have to decide what’s more important: our virtual waistline or our virtual wallet.
On the left side of the picture, we have the crème brûlée and flan from Andika, surrounded by decorative items. Meanwhile, on the right side, we have Chic Chicca’s crème brûlée set, complete with a pile of plates and gold teaspoons.
While Chic Chicca excels in dispensers and single items with self-poses, I couldn’t resist buying Andika’s crème brûlée dispenser set. What can I say? I’m a crème brûlée addict. Surprisingly, everything on the table is just one prim each, except for the dispensers which are two prims. Andika’s style is different from Chic Chicca’s, but I have to admit, Chic Chicca’s crème brûlée looks slightly better (although the picture doesn’t do it justice). It just goes to show that detailed objects can be achieved with fewer prims. Now, if only someone could explain why some objects are still so high in prims…
no.59 & Cinoe dispensers
At the bar, I’m surrounded by gin, cans of Cola, and bottles of lemonade from the makers at no.59. They’re all just one prim each, but that doesn’t mean they skimped on quality. In fact, no.59 has the best drinking animations around – no awkward straw-to-eyeball interactions here. And as if that wasn’t enough, they even added sound effects for when you crack open a can or twist off a cap. Talk about attention to detail! When it comes to drink dispensers, no.59 is definitely top-shelf material.
I have single bottles from Chic Chicca, all of them dispensers and only one prim each, but the tray full of mini Champagne bottles is eight prims. The chips and nuts are from Cinoe.
I made my inaugural purchase from Cinoe at an event and got their set that included pizza, peanuts, chips, and, of course, beer. I passed on the beer since I already have one (don’t judge me), but the pizza animation left a lot to be desired. It seems like animating pizza and toast with hands is a tricky task, resulting in some odd-looking movements. Texture-wise, I only really enjoyed the peanuts and chips, but everything else from Cinoe was spot on. What I particularly appreciated was the handy button to clear or switch out props, which is a godsend compared to the typical detachment struggles. No.59 also has that option, which means they’re definitely in the upper echelon of drink and food dispenser creators.
Lastly, I had to go to the Man Cave to check out Lucas’ oyster tray.
Final words about dispensers
As we conclude our exploration of food and drink dispensers in Second Life, let’s give credit where it’s due. While Lucas Lameth may not always hit the mark with his dispenser aesthetics, his creativity and low prim count are unmatched. And let’s not forget his green thumb, as his potted ficus trees are a standout in the plant department.
However, some creators seem to be venturing outside of their comfort zone lately, which can be hit or miss. But it’s always exciting to see fresh ideas and newcomers in the mix, even if not everything is perfect.
While some may not care about the details, as a discerning Second Life consumer, I enjoy seeing how creators push the boundaries of interactivity and creativity. And let’s be honest, it also helps us spend our Lindens wisely when we have demos available to test.
So, what’s your favorite dispenser brand in Second Life? Have I missed any noteworthy ones? Let me know! And don’t forget to check out my Flickr Group for a visual feast of what’s available in the world of pixelated food and drinks. Until next time, bon appétit!
I just wanted to say i love reading your blog, I hope you cities in 2021.