The New Second Life Avatar: Senra has Arrived.

The new Second Life starter avatars are now available and they’re called Senra. Their names are Blake and Jamie.

It isn’t just the avatars that are new though, the “New User Experience” (sign-up) has had a dramatic overhaul, letting you customise your new avatar at the point of registration (see this Second Life University video for more on that), before you even log into the viewer. Previously your only choice was from a selection of complete avatars with no customisation options at all, so this is great progress, if a little late in coming.

This approach will let new Residents see how avatars are put together, allowing the process of customising their new avatar with purchased items to be much less painful.

Existing Residents will now find a folder called Senra in the Library section of their Inventory.

I put together a few avatar looks using solely the Senra items. Some are admittedly better than others, but I wanted to show a range of the different options available for the new starter avatars. I’ve used both the Male & Female versions, so GUYS SCROLL DOWN.

In the Jamie folder you have quite a range of basic avatar components (6 skins, 6 shapes, 9 hairstyles) and a selection of clothing.

  • Senra Jamie – shape 2
  • Senra Jamie – skin – 1
  • Senra Jamie – hair – style 6 – blue
  • Senra Jamie – top – tshirt – black
  • Senra Jamie – bottom – sweatpants – black
  • Senra Jamie – shoes – casual sneakers – white
  • Location:
  • Senra Jamie – shape 5
  • Senra Jamie – skin – 4
  • Senra Jamie – hair – style 4 – black
  • Senra Jamie – bottoms – suit bottom – black
  • Senra Jamie – tops – suit top – white black
  • Senra Jamie – shoes – casual sneakers – white
  • Location:
  • Senra Jamie – shape 6
  • Senra Jamie – skin – 3
  • Senra Jamie – hair – style 7 – light blonde
  • Senra Jamie – hair – style 7 – hair base – light brown (she’s a bottle -blonde evidently)
  • Senra Jamie – top – crop top – stripes pink
  • Senra Jamie – bottom – pencil skirt – arcade pink
  • Senra Jamie – shoes – slides – pink
  • Location:

I know that the face of Barbie looks like a Ken in drag, but that’s the shape of the face and I wanted to leave stuff as it was out of the library.

And onto Blake….or is it just Senra? I opened up the folders and started adding stuff, replacing the Jamie parts with Blake ones and they’re remarkably similar. The Blake body shapes are obviously quite different, but the hair style selections are the same, as is the clothing. I did try to use as many item combinations as possible, but it was tricky after finding Blake had the same warderobe as Jamie.

  • Senra Blake – shape 6
  • Senra Blake – skin – 6
  • Senra Blake – hair – style 5 – black
  • Senra Blake – top – puffer jacket – green
  • Senra Blake – bottom – relaxed jeans – denim black
  • Senra Blake – shoes – canvas low – green
  • Location:
  • Senra Blake – shape 3
  • Senra Blake – skin – 5
  • Senra Blake – hair – style 3 – black
  • Senra Blake – top – hoodie – blue white red
  • Senra Blake – bottom – shorts – red
  • Senra Blake – bottom – skinny jeans – denim light blue
  • Senra Blake – shoes – slides – blue
  • Location:

The poses and facial expressions in the photos are those in the included Animation Controller object. It’s good this is there, but there’s no options for choosing animations. This is why they all seem to look deptessed or sad, there’s no option to make them smile.

So in conclusion it an improvement on the Classic system-layer based avatars, that were cutomisable but not mesh, it is an improvement on the previous mesh avatars that you couldn’t customse at all. However the range of options just isn’t there yet.

The best thing to come out of this release is that it can be done at registration, on the website, that’s the major improvement here. They are after all “Starter” avatars and if they were actually really good, people wouldn’t spend money to upgrade them. So for a new Resident they’re much more acceptable, if you already have a mesh body, head and existing warderobe, leave Jamie and Blake in the Library.

Some perspectives from other blogs: