Sometimes I don’t think people believe me when I tell them about the random coincidences and events that shape my Second Life. Take last week for example. I was discovering and experimenting with breedable butterflies right? There was a guy who asked in group chat if there were any new breeders. I answered, and he gave me a butterfly just out of the blue. A very generous offer that I appreciated, but I didn’t think too much of it at the time as Kismet told me some of the bigger players in the breedables game often do this for newbies.
So Sunday I’m touring around various markets and stores that sell butterflies and supplies and I start up a chat with a nice lady who was setting up more flutters when all of a sudden this guy teleports in. Immediately I laughed “You’re the guy! The one who gave me the flutter”. So we all got to talking, I guess she had seen me at the auction the day before, and they offered to answer any of my questions and help me find what I needed for breeding stock for my garden. That’s when I, of course, perved their profiles.
His had picks for the SFL, Second Life Football League, which is a strange coincidence because one of the suggestions that was made to me when I started this project was to explore SL sports leagues. I had to confess that I had snooped him and ask him about why he had SFL in his picks. He told me he used to be a game announcer and was now a player. He mentioned that they actually had a game coming up the next night, Monday night. Now what are the odds I’d stumble on people from one of part of my todo list who would lead me onto another item for my project?
He gave me a link to buy tickets to the game… I know what you’re thinking, buy tickets? I did the same. I even made bit of a squidgy face because I’m trying to do this project only surviving on my premium account stipend and the 200L cost of the ticket would eat up over half of my weekly budget. Sometimes you just have to roll with it though right? I mean, it costs less than a (cheap) cup of coffee and I figured it would be hilarious. So, I bought the ticket and went.
It was funny, I spent a good part of the evening laughing, but honestly it was considerably more professional and better organized than I ever expected. Not only is the stadium well made, the uniforms are great, they have every detail accounted for from team owners to uniforms to referees but it seems the system that runs this is pretty sophisticated as well. They even had announcers live on the stream.
I did spend a good part of it just amused by the whole idea, and then trying to figure out how the system worked from a technical perspective, but soon I found myself genuinely involved in watching the game unfold, just as I would watching any sporting event. At half time each team’s cheerleaders even did routines. Once again, I was surprisingly impressed. Sure they were coordinated animations, but it was obvious that a lot of time went into selecting and organizing those to perfectly match the song they chose to look like a real choreographed cheerleader routine. After each was done I applauded, for real. The cheer captains put a lot of work into those shows and I enjoyed that addition to the game atmosphere.
It took a little while for me to figure out where to put my camera and what to watch, sometimes the play would take off and I found myself missing the whole thing. It sure gave me a whole new appreciation for those camera people in RL who film footballs games. Although I knew an aerial view would give me the best vantage point for following the plays, I admit I was having too much fun using my camera and lining myself up on the line of scrimmage and really getting the feel of being there.
I took about a thousand pictures to my desktop, but most turned out as close ups of a foot, or a butt, or people just standing after the play was over. It was fairly difficult to follow the play and snap an action picture but I’m really happy with this mid tackle shot I got. The ball glows for some reason. It could just be me though.
It was definitely an evening well spent. I’m so glad I met Miguel and Kyrene or I might never have gotten around to looking into the SFL. Will I go to another game? I’m pretty sure I will, not all the time as the price of the tickets is an issue for someone on a tight budget like me, but I do think it’s money well spent when I want to treat myself and I don’t begrudge them charging because the cost of running this must be considerable. I understand they have a superbowl which I can imagine will be a great time so I’ll have to find out when that is an get my tickets early.
I think the games would be even more enjoyable if you followed the season regularly and got involved in some friendly inter team rivalry or developed a favorite. I am definitely going to recommend the SFL as either a fun night or or a great hobby in SL for those who would be interested. Who knows, even becoming an announcer, or ref, or cheerleader! I also plan to look into some of the other SL sports leagues like soccer and hockey.
You can purchase your SFL tickets for the upcoming games on the marketplace.
You’ll get a landmark to the stadium seating as well as a ticket that you must wear to watch the game.
Next up on my adventures? Well my list seems to be getting longer not shorter, but I definitely think I have to explore the upcoming BURN2 festival. You can see the schedule of events and promo video on Daniel’s Blog.
Or you can check out the BURN2 site http://burn2.org/