Helix City is a Cyberpunk role play region with a bit of a difference. It’s not on a futuristic Earth, Earth is dying, it’s on Mars.
At first glance it appears to have taken inspiration from the likes of Blade Runner. However on reading the information/rules notecard at the arrival area, they insist most adamantly it’s not the case:
This is not Blade Runner, nor is it The Fifth Element, nor The Expanse. This is Helix, and the story is yours to write.
They do have their own lore (read it here) and want to keep to it that way, which I think is great. The ethos of “the story is yours to write” sums up role play in SL for me. So robots, cyborgs, appropriately dressed humanoids all welcome. However they’re quite clear about other Canon appearances, so don’t turn up in a Starfleet or similar uniform. I think it boils down to them wanting you to make an effort to make your own story, not copy a movie or series you liked.
I had already put together an outfit that I’d assembled from purchases at Fantasy Faire and recently from the Cyberpunk event. After finishing reading the rules, I added a combat utility belt and a leg holder gun!
Police intervention is rare, but swift and relentless. Muggings, brawls, and prostitution are some people’s forms of employment. Carry a weapon and keep your cash stashed.
So once I was ready, it was time to explore. Straight through the entrance portal takes you into a car park and taxi ranks like you would find coming out of an airport or transit hub, but we are not on Earth, this is Mars.
The general atmosphere is dark and foreboding punctuated by neon lights. You do get the feeling you’re in the set for one of the movies they claim not to be like, but I guess dark sci-fi can only have so many variations, it’s the storyline behind it that’s different.
Ava stepped out of the carpark onto the street and sees signs for various establishments, some in English others not.
She turns off the main street immediately, that’s a place you’ll be seen and that can be dangerous for a new arrival. She walked through an open courtyard area promptly not wanting to be in the open too long until familiar with the area.
She hears a sound behind her and steps quickly into the shadows out of the neon glare and finds herself hidden by a tree of all things. Briefly wondering how it could survive without much sunlight while she waits to see if her would-be pursuer passes by.
A young blonde woman walks past heading the way Ava has been going. Judging by her appearance she wouldn’t be stalking anyone, more likely to be stalked. She wore just shorts and a light top, definitely not the attire of a sane person around here.
Ava proceeded on her way towards what appeared to be a bar or club by the name of “Kink”. Possibly disreputable but probably a good place to get information if there were any patrons at this hour. Unfortunately the place was empty except a bored looking pole dancer.
As she pondered where she might head to next, the blonde approached Ava looking somewhat lost.
Ava took a seat at the bar, keeping an eye on the room in the reflection in the glass behind the bar. She asks the stranger if she’s alright, since she doesn’t look it.
There then followed a discussion between them that reveals the girl is a stereotypical “daddy’s little rich girl” who’s had her allowance cut off. She’d thought she might go for a jog while the ship she arrived on was refueling. That explained the attire but not the lack of sense that made her think it was a good idea. However she was now wandering the streets because the ships captain had left without her. We RPed for a little while before she had to go, possibly the beginnings of a good storyline here.
Ava left the woman in the bar with a suggestion that maybe she take up pole dancing to raise cash. Heading warily through the streets she sees evidence of various Earth cultures and some she isn’t sure about.
She steps into the alcove of one and sees writing on the door suggesting the place is definitely not open for business. Whatever Spice might be.
Further exploration has Ava a little turned around, while she tries to retrace her steps, she doesn’t notice a hover bike approach.
Ava steps off the gangway she had been crossing back onto solid ground. While the rider doesn’t at first glance mean her harm Ava remains wary.
The female rider asks if she is new in town and needs somewhere to stay, mentioning she knew of a half-way house. Ava thinks of the blonde she left at the bar and answers “I’m fine for now myself. However I met someone earlier that could definitely use that kind of help.” She continues as she puts a little distance between them, “I’ll go find them again and send them your way, or maybe bring them so they make it safely.”
I definitely like Helix City and will be back to RP when time allows. I must admit while I was exploring the region, having just read the summary of their lore, the advertisements in one of the films on their not list was on a loop in my head. “The off-world colonies, a chance to begin again.”
However once I read the extended lore on their website while writing this, its a film that isn’t on their list that came to mind. A film in which it was ancient aliens that built the tech to make the Martian environment breathable, not Earth corporations. I like the Helix version of the scenario better though.
But I digress, I’ll be back there again to followup on those RP leads and I’d recommend people check the place out too. Just remember to grab the rules notecard and read it before entering.
Helix City arrival point: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Helix/37/235/41
Outfit credits added HERE
At the Faire last year I wandered rather aimlessly, I followed the Bubbo Owls storyline and one day I went to a NeoVictoria meet & greet, apart from that I didn’t explore much. It was that meet that would change my perspective, I just didn’t know it at the time.
This year I was at the planning meetings and discussions of what NeoVictoria may do at their meets and discussed what items they would be offering for sale and as gifts. It was this last part that was most relevant, I volunteered to make a freebie gift.
On the evening of the Wednesday before the Faire began I was invited to the “Backstage” group so I could Rez the item for visitors to purchase.
On the Thursday morning I logged back in to have an explore.
It was surreal being in the Faire before it opened. My previous experiences had always been of bustling regions full of people. As usual I didn’t really have much of a plan of what I wanted to see, I just knew I had about 3 hours before the Faire opened and there would be people everywhere. I just wanted to see as much as I could before the masses arrived.
Since the NeoVictoria store is located in Auxenio’s Pass steampunk region, that’s where I started. When I stepped outside I was blown away by the surroundings. I started walking the paths to see what I found.
With the regions being mostly empty except for store owners making final tweaks to their displays and other creators taking the time to wander, it was blissfully quiet.
I stuck mostly to the paths, with occasional detours, wanting to try and see as much as I could in the time I had. Traveling mostly clockwise around the Faire, I took in the sights of the created locations. Each one mind blowing or boggling in their design. I got about half way around before I ran out of time, but I had a large collection of snapshots taken as I went around. Here are some of my favourites.
Now I look forward to exploring the rest of the Faire!
So it’s this time of year again Fantasy Faire is upon us. Another week and more of exploring beautiful location, roleplay and shopping in aid of Relay for Life in Second Life.
Last year I visited the Faire and for the first time was able to follow their week-long roleplay storyline. That was great fun and I wrote about it in my Bubbo Owls post. This year it appears the RP is called the Grizzly Cubs and I look forward to following this years adventure.
As I’ve mentioned previously, last year I attended a Meet & Greet with the lovely folks from the NeoVictoria Project. I submitted a character and became an official member of the community. They’re holding similar Meet & Greet sessions this year, so I shall be present for at least one of them to help out. I’m also possibly providing a freebie to be given out at the NeoVictoria location at the Faire.
What else is new this year is that I applied to be one of the Official FF Bloggers. However the applications are now closed and my names not on the list. I suspect this is probably due to the quality of my regular images, admittedly lower quality, but it’s usually because they’re un-staged and my focus is the RP or story. (I’ll be remedying that for the Faire) So instead I’m going to try and complete some of their Blogger Challenges which I’ve copied below:
Faire Folk – create a character from the Fairelands
My New Shiny – show off a shop that is new to you
I Remember – reminisce about previous Fairelands
Faire Life – blog and report about Faire events
The Emblem Project – take a picture with the Fantasy Faire Emblem in your favourite Faireland
All sound fun things to do, combined with following the Cubs RP I just hope I have the time to do it all!
Official Faire Website: https://fantasyfairesl.wordpress.com/
On the 1st of April I attended a Townhall meeting of the NeoVictoria roleplay members to discuss ideas of what we/they will be doing for Fantasy Faire 2020.
It was last year that I met with them at their Meet & Greet events at the Faire
I wrote about it in this post.
I won’t spoil things by revealing the plans, but there was talks of possible roleplay ideas, freebies and sale items for the charity the Faire supports. They’ll be finalised and released in due time, but they’ll be a lot of fun if everything comes together as planned!
A while ago I applied to RP at Liddell Correctional Facility (LCF) which you can read about in this post.
They didn’t technically accept my application, since the character role of Bounty-hunter was unsustainable. However I was able to participate in a storyline into which my character would fit: they had a mass escape.
My story centred around the tracking of an inmate by the name of Jessica May.
In the process of her escape she had taken my friend Megan Sommers, a prison guard, as a hostage.
I went to the prison to offer my services in locating Jess and Megan, they were both very keen on the idea OOCly.
Now I’ve recently tried to not use too many chat logs in my posts, they can be tedious to read, but I will include some here in places as well as summerising.
RP Scene 1: Tracking
At the prison I met with an officer by the name of Frank Timberwood l and played out using some information from him and one of their computers to locate the GPS on Megan’s phone and her car, since Jess had conveniently for me, used that as her getaway vehicle.
[01:32:02] Ava Delaney looks around for a bell or buzzer to get someones attention,finding none she calls “anyone here?”
[01:32:53] Ava Delaney turns and sees an officer outside the glass doors to the yard
RP Scene 2: Hunting
The location of Megan’s car was in a rather rundown part of town, the only place showing any signs of life was a tatty looking bar with a couple of probable prostitutes loitering outside.
Unsurprisingly I found Jess inside having a celebratory drink enjoying her newfound freedom, but no sign of Megan.
Jess hadn’t thought to leave the car somewhere further from where she might be found. This confirmed what I’d been told, that while Jess was psychotic murderous bitch, she wasn’t too bright.
(I should clarify here for those not so familiar with RP, that I am referring to the fictional characters described personality, created by their typist. Most definitely Not calling the real-life person behind the keyboard stupid.)
There followed an inevitable confrontation in the bar where I was too bold and ended up taking a gunshot in the chest as a result. Thank heavens for modern bullet proof vests.
Jess bolted out the door and met an accomplice, by the time I was up on my feet and able to pursue the pair of them had quite a head start.
I came in sight of them again near the waterfront where they were already in a boat, seems Jess might not be so smart but her unknown accomplice was.
I fired a few shots at them but I couldn’t risk killing Jess because I didn’t know where Megan was and the boat was too small for her to be onboard.
So I made a call on the radio I’d borrowed from officer Timberwood to update him and suggest they call the coastguard to follow them.
[06:25:15] Ava Delaney stands on the rocks looking out over the harbour as her quarry escapes. She takes out the radio she got from Frank and switches it on “Calling officer Timberwood, this is Ava Delaney. I have an update on Jessica May. Over”
That unfortunately became the last part of the chase I was able to play out, but not the end of the story. Due to a combination of timezone differences and the inconvenience of the Christmas holidays, I was unable to make it to the locating Megan or the Capture of Jess stages of the storyline. Which was very disappointing.
However I did make a visit to Jess at the prison after her capture. When I was supposedly dropping off an application to become a guard at the prison, which never happened, but also to gloat a little. Although obviously I was not too pleased about getting shot, I conceded that I was pushing my luck in the situation resulting the damage to my rather expensive vest.
As you may have seen from Jess’s prison record above she was a Death Row inmate. This meant her escape and subsequent re-capture didn’t really change her sentence, just delayed it a little while. I was unable to attend the event but I have some pictures taken on the day, provided by Jess. You can see however that they are quite thorough and take it very seriously.
The original date scheduled for her execution was 16th of January 2020, in the end the (Roleplay) Death of Jessica May by electrocution (or “zap-zap chair” as the group call it) happened on 15th of February 2020.
Jess has since created a new character to play at the prison, which is fairly common in these situations. The new character may well have a different temperament, attitude and definitely a different appearance. Just as an actor plays a character in a movie or play.