...you can leave your friends behind.
I was catching up on some TV shows tonight, and I was able to watch the latest installment of Glee (Dream On episode). It had a song in it that came out when I was in high school. The Safety Dance. It was a one hit wonder for the group Men Without Hats, but we sure loved the song, and the group name actually inspired a few friends of mine and I to form our own little group. I will refrain from going into that more at this point.
Anyway, I thought the timing was interesting, because not just the night before I went out dance shopping. I am very picky on what dances I will use for my avatar. There are some really great dances available in SL these days, but most of them make my avatar look a little too feminine. I actually enjoy watching all the ladies use them, cause they look great, but I don't like them on me. So up until last night, I had my standard 4 dances that seem to fit my personality pretty well.
My favorite place for guy dances is Akeyo. I always try there first. This particular nights shopping adventure started at 3fx. 3fx really does have an amazing assortment of not only single dances, but couples dances as well. I highly recommend you take a look there if you need to add some new dances to your repertoire. After checking out the new couples dances, there I was back at Akeyo.
One of the other things I have been meaning to do was tweak my AO a little bit. I have a few stands that I am not wild about, and I always like to look around for some new ones to add in to freshen it up a bit. The first thing I notices when I arrived at Akeyo was the new AO vendors, so I decided to take a look.
I hopped on the vendor and started to cycle through the animations. Most I liked, some I have seen too much of recently, or the stand just moved a little too much for my taste. I kept going back and forth, trying to narrow down which ones I liked. I finally just decided to get the whole AO, so I could play with all of them on my own time, and not take up the vendor for hours on end. So I plopped down the $1,800 lindens for the Rudeboy AO.
I checked out some of the new dance moves that had arrived, bought a few of those, then headed home. I unpacked my new purchase, and immediately wore the new AO. I had to laugh because just that morning I was teasing a friend about wearing 2 AO's, and here I was doing just that. Like can be kinda funny that way. I noticed a few things right away on this new AO.
First, my first impression of the HUD was good. It defaults to the upper left hand corner of my screen, where I do not usually have anything anyway. It is horizontal, as opposed to vertical as so many AO HUDs are. There were quite a few buttons I needed to explore, but the standard ones were there (Stand, Sit Override, Ground Sit). One new thing I found was the "Dance" button, which is not uncommon these days, but my current AO does not have that option. I use a huddles HUD for my dances, and I will probably keep using it for the features that it has on loading different sets of animations. I am not always dancing in a club, so it's nice to be able to load up a few casual dances if I am listening to some live music.
Anyway, so I was playing around with my new AO HUD, and I figured I would add my new dances to it, just to experiment. This is where I found the neatest part. Up until now, when I had to configure an AO, it was all about editing a notecard to tell the AO what animations to use for what. This Rudeboy AO did not have ANY notecards in it at all. So I went exploring around to see exactly how I was supposed to get this all to work.
As a guy, I always try to see if I can figure stuff out before I fall back on reading the directions. This time was no different. But based on past experience, I knew that I would have to drop the AO onto the ground before I could add anything to it. So, with it sitting in the sand on my beach, I dragged my 4 new dances into the AO.
All of a sudden, I saw in my chat history that the AO had detected I had added some new animations. This is not really all that new, but what was really interesting was that it was able to automatically determine what catagory to put them in! I have to say, that was impressive. I am pretty sure that it was able to figure this out by using the names as a clue, because it was Akeyo dances I added. BUT...I have to say, it was nice to see some thought put into how this HUD worked.
I poked around a bit more, thinking that it would not be able to automagically know where to put ALL the animations throughout SL. What I found out was actually pretty ingenious I think. There is a "reconfigure" button on the AO (you have to expand
I am not sure if I am quite ready to give up my Vista AO quite yet. My original plan was to strip the animations out of the Rudeboy AO and add the stands I liked to my Vista. After playing with the Akeyo AO for a little bit, I am not sure if that plan will still be my plan A or not. Who knows, maybe I will try out this 2 AO thing a little.
I am always happy to see progress made in making our lives in this world a bit easier. The process of setting up an AO has been one of those things that is rarely attempted in the first months of being in SL. Even veterans of this world tend to not change AO's very often because of the effort required to do it. With the system that artoo Magneto has created with the Akeyo AO's, I can see a time very soon where changing your AO becomes even more commonplace, and done much earlier in a persons Second Life.
So once again Akeyo has come through for me. I was able to find a few more dances that seem to suit me, and some new AO stands to liven up my current AO a bit.
Now if I can only find the dance that Aritie did at the mall.
Akeyo_PowerAO_Rudeboy (v1.5) - $1,800 lindens
http://slurl.com/secondlife/AKEYO/147/118/51 - Akeyo Main Store
http://slurl.com/secondlife/MoonLand/97/61/321 - 3fx Store