Little Silent Hill Strikes Back!

January 16, 2007

Onder Skall reports from Little Silent Hill, Braunworth 42, 119, 179 (Mature)

This article began with somebody being very angry with me, but then became a massive epic undertaking. Strap yourselves in for Little Silent Hill Strikes Back!

There was a time where I wrote movie reviews for a few papers. I was expected to be cruel and cutting when necessary, passionate in my opinion, and without any kind of restraint. I could do this because a review is largely just an entertainment product, even if it is my honest personal opinion. This is something that is understood by entertainment professionals.

Onder takes a second look at Little Silent Hill

Onder takes another look at Little Silent Hill

Apparently that doesn’t fly so well in the independent creation circles of Second Life. A comment appeared in the midnight hour under my Little Silent Hill article. It was from the creator, Eryn Curie. Here it is, unabridged, after the fold:

Of course, some folks wouldn’t be happy with anything less than a full-featured, 100% accurate reproduction of Silent Hill. I can’t do much about them, as I am only one person with limited funds/time/etc. One could spend their entire life trying to reproduce Silent Hill down to every bloody detail; I’ve tried, but in the long run has turned out simply unfeasible, not to mention back-breaking.

While I’ve seen a lot of appreciation for my efforts (your little review notwithstanding), exactly zero have come forth with a serious build to actually contribute to the project. So…what’s there is what’s there, and that’s how it’s going to be for now.

Working to make something that actually looks good in Second Life is like pulling teeth. One must CONSTANTLY deal with space constraints, monthly tier fees, prim limits and the clunky tools themselves. Back when I started really getting into SL, I had one tiny 512 sq. m. plot…and guess what? The church – my first build – had to fit on that. You get what I’m saying here?

And you know, you didn’t have to bother with your generous donation of one linden. Really. What amounts to .01 of a cent is NOT going to make one whit of difference now with Linden Lab’s new extra-higher sim prices. In fact, I’ll give you a refund once I’m in-world next.

Tell you what; if you want me to make a full-scale, A-game go of it, why don’t you provide the sim space? Sims themselves are a deal at about $2000 USD, plus about $300 each month after initial purchase. Whaddya say, hm? You do that, and I’ll build the Silent Hill in Second Life we ALL have always wanted, not just you.

Alright, so I was a little hard on Little Silent Hill. Still, what’s the point in saying anything if you’re going to spend all of your time worried about offending people? To make it up to the creator, I gave them this opportunity to make a proper retort. I could have deleted her comment, or re-contextualized it to make myself look better, but I’d rather Second Life Games be about the honest truth than marketing crap.

Having said all of that, to be honest, she makes some good points. It’s like going to Sundance and criticizing an independent film for being too indy. Now, I still think the club was a total waste of space, and if you took that and the burger place out you’d have enough room for the school (which could be half alternate-world!). I won’t budge on that. Still, I was way too hard on that church build. It’s good, especially for an indy effort. I should have gone into more detail about the excellent hotel too.

Keep in mind that often people avoid making criticism because they don’t care. Many of the glowing reviews of LSH don’t spend any time there, don’t give it any thought, and just quickly dash off a few words of appreciation to make a deadline. I spent time with the build. I care about Silent Hill. This means something to me, and you’re not going to get off easily.

This is the part, however, where I take a little responsibility. See, if I really do care, then I should do something about it. I want a great build, but I can’t really expect Eryn to do it all by herself, can I? If I really do care, then it’s time I find out what I can do to help. I IM’ed Eryn in-world, thanked her for the comment, and asked to meet. Since I haven’t heard back yet, I went back to the build and took another look around to ponder the situation.

Onder and a frequent visitor ponder the situation

I had a conversation with someone there who was back for the fifth time. Obsession with this build wasn’t just reserved to one fanboy and one builder. We talked about the atmosphere of the place, and of how important a piece it is… and we couldn’t help but feel that more needed to be done.

I have a feeling there are more of us out there. Many more. Some with textures in their inventory waiting to be used. Some with building skills that are itching for a good project. If you’re out there, IM me in world. Let’s get together and offer our services to make a team effort a reality in Little Silent Hill.

That is, if Eryn will have us.

One comment

  1. Allright, here I am again.

    I don’t wish to get into an extended dialogue with you nor anyone in-world; when I’m in there, it’s either to have fun or to get work done on some other critical projects…not to have my time taken up with too much chatting.

    Instead I want to simply say this: if people really want to make Silent Hill content, they certainly don’t need my specific go-ahead…and if they are honestly driven and passionate, they will, to borrow a phrase we all have heard too often, Just Do It.

    It’s what I did. All it took was a little time teaching myself the building tools and how to get/make and apply textures.

    My doors have always been open to people who want to show me their Silent Hill-themed creations. In fact, I have always been more than willing to host Silent Hill builds made by others which are at least up to the standards of quality in my own work — though unfortunately LSH now has a lot less land than it once did. Sadly, the square-meterage we have now is almost full.

    Let this be my last word on this topic. If you or other Silent Hill fans manage to recreate something truly lovely from the games, I want more than anything to see it…and host it at LSH, provided the space issue can be worked out.

    Oh, and I happen to think that the Heaven’s Night (“bar”) build is some of my best work. 😛

    Best regards.

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