How to Create a Virtual World
By Aurelio Locsin
Updated September 22, 2017
Virtual worlds allow us to create online avatars and enter lands of fantasy and imagination. Though we can enjoy the creations of others, we can also create our own by joining websites like Second Life. You can practice your skills with a free membership before upgrading to the paid subscription to develop your creation.
Explore Help Island, which is your start location. Practice controlling your avatar to become an expert at the interface. Access Help (F1) as needed. When you are ready, click any of the "Teleport" links to enter the main world and develop building skills.
Click on the Map button in the lower right. The World Map dialogue appears. Use the Search feature to look for "Sandbox," where you can practice building. Select the found location and click the Teleport button to go there.
Right-click on any blank area of the ground until a radial appears. Click "Create" to display the Tool dialogue. Pick a shape, called a "prim," and click on the ground to make that shape appear. Practice resizing, texturing and joining prims to create objects like houses and furniture. You'll also find prebuilt objects by clicking the Inventory button.
Upgrade to Premium membership when you are ready to create your world. You'll pay a monthly fee, which grants you a weekly stipend in Lindens, the local currency. You can now buy up to 512 square meters of land to start your world. (You can also buy larger lots, but this costs an extra monthly fee.)
Look for suitable land by clicking the Search button in the center to display the Search dialogue. Then click the Land tab. The upper left drop boxes should say "All Types" and "PG & Mature." Click a check into the Price checkbox and then 512 into the Price box.
Click the Area checkbox and enter 500 into the Area box. Click the Search button for a list of matching land. Click the Area header to sort by header. You're looking for land that is 512 square meters in size and costing 512 Lindens.
Click on a land title to select it and then the "Teleport" button to go there. Inspect the land by right-clicking on any blank area and choosing "About Land." Be sure to click the Covenant tab to see if there are any restrictions. If the land is suitable, build your virtual world there by right-clicking on the ground and selecting "Buy Land" from the radial. The amount is deducted from your income.
Modify the land as needed by right-clicking on the ground and choosing "Edit Terrain." Raise and lower the landscape as needed.
Add objects to the land by dragging them from your Inventory or by building them using techniques you learned in the sandbox. You can add as many objects as needed as long as you don't exceed the 117 prim limit. (Larger land allows you more prims.)
Buy prebuilt objects from various stores if you don't feel like building your own. Click the "Search" button and the "Places" tab in the search dialogue. Type what you need in the text box such as "houses" or "furniture" and click the "Search" button. A list of shops is displayed. Click a shop to select it and then click the "Teleport" button to go there.
Aurelio Locsin has been writing professionally since 1982. He published his first book in 1996 and is a frequent contributor to many online publications, specializing in consumer, business and technical topics. Locsin holds a Bachelor of Arts in scientific and technical communications from the University of Washington.