Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Progress at Twinity beta

Metaversum released a new version of Twinity beta a couple of days ago, and tonight I sat down to test it. Here's the early results!

All in all, this version is better than the last one. I really see some progress here, and unlike after the previous release, I now find myself almost eager to spend more time in and with Twinity. But the beta is, without question, not yet done.

Here's the good and bad:

+ avatar movement is smooth and easy. There's virtually no lag. This is probably due to the fact that there were very few people online at the time of testing. Or, maybe much of the computing is done locally? That would explain the big download - see the first issue under 'bad' below.
+ this version performs much better than the previous one, which was almost unworkable at times. In this version, the mouse still lags a bit now and then, but compared to earlier, it's negligble. A huge improvement here!
+ More outdoors. There are more outside places available, which is a relief when compared to earlier. In those releases, all spaces were either in the house or confined to a garden within a garden wall, which made being in Twinity almost a claustrophobic experience at times. Now, there's space to move and more open skies above. Much better!
+ I like the graphics in Twinity. It looks good, if a bit bland here and there.
+ Patcher. You don't have to download and install the entire client each time; the Patcher process just downloads the changes to your machine. If only I had known, I hadn't downloaded the entire client again :)


-Twinity a 155 MB download. I don't really care, but I know there's people complaining about Second Life's 35 MB download! The difference is that for SL, you have to download the entire client each time a new version is released. As said above, for Twinity it's just whatever the patcher is downloading, after the first initial install. But, there's no information on how much the patcher is actually downloading!
-Some processes take a loooong time. Downloading, installing, patching, starting up.. It takes too long, I think. Same goes for the photofit function. Great concept, but I stopped the process after thirty minutes. Thirty minutes to create an avatar face shape! And it wasn't even done!
-Crashes. Obviously it's still beta, and while the client performs better and feels more robust, I had to start the client four times to get one usable session; it hangs most of the time you try to start it. If you switch to another application during startup, Twinity will probably crash. And if it starts, it often hangs between authentication and loading the Twinity environment.

Still to do:
+/- I need to get out more. No, not literally :) I want to explore more of Twinity's outside venues.
+/- I'd like to meet more people in Twinity. Share some experiences!
+/- I need to check out creating and buying stuff, dressing up the apartment etcetera.

Twinity on Flickr
There's a public Twinity group on Flickr. Check it out!

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