Avination is one of the fastest growing grids on the internet. It is an OpenSim based grid; OpenSim, full name OpenSimulator – multi user, multi platform, 3D platform that is completely open source. Open source refers to a program where the source code is available to the general public to use or modify anyway they want for free.
Avination is one of the grids brought to life by someones creativity put into the original source code.
Started in September 2010 by Avination Virtual Limited, which is founded and owned by Melanie Thielker (is well known in OpenSim circles, adds credibility to Avinations identity). It has given many virtual environments a run for their money, including Second Life. With its unique combination of content, people and technology. It has far moved beyond similar games, it moves a great deal more smoothly and is easier to move around. Absolutely no compromising on content, script performance and compatibility. The one thing I will say is I was unable to create an account because the email verification wasn’t working and I tried three different email accounts.
The user starts by creating an account and providing log-in information. Different to Second Life, Avination provides quite a lengthy list of generated last names to choose from. They are then directed to an area out of the three options provided when creating their account; Welcome area – allowing users to shop and socialize with people, Tutorial – allowing users to become more familiar with how to use Avination and Role-Playing – fast combat actions.
Role-Playing in Avination – http://metaverse-traveller.blogspot.co.nz/2011_05_25_archive.html
Avination has its own currency called Care Coins (C$). It can be gained by users and sold for real money.
3 US Dollars = 1000 Care Coins
Care Coins cost about as much as Second Life’s Linden Dollar (L$). Until very recently users were able to transfer Linden Dollars to Avination by in-world ATMs. However, Linden Labs put a stop to that, saying that it was a violation of the Terms of Service. Users must now “cash out” through LindeX before using the real life currency to pay for services outside of Second Life.
Care Coins are available for purchase at the Virtual currency exchange service website; https://www.virwox.com/
Although, the C$ and the L$ are worth the same in real life, to purchase items in Avination is a fair bit cheaper than Second Life, e.g; Hair – C$50-$100, L$150-$200. I suppose it varies on the quality of the purchase as well, Second Life provides free “demos” of pretty much everything.
Avination is free to join, however, like every other virtual world if you want extras you have to pay.
Region: supports up to 45,000 prims and has a space of 65536 square meters.
Water Region: supports up to 750 prims and they have the same space as normal regions.
From these prices, it is pretty easy to gather that Avination is cheaper to have than Second Life.
Avination has been compared in a lot of ways as a sort of “baby Second Life or “Second Life reincarnation”, the textures, builds, movements. Has the “look and feel” of Second Life. Unfortunately, despite my best attempts I have been unable to go into the grid myself, there must be something wrong with their confirmation emails, I have sent it to now four email addresses and have yet to receive anything. I cannot log into Avination without the email :-(. I have been researching as in-depth as I can into Avination to make up for it :-).
Avination is remarkably stable, running in multiple viewers (Imprudence, Avination viewer, Firestorm). Running at an approximate frame rate of 28-30fps, or in a more populated area 14fps. Due to Avination being big on “role-playing” they have not stuck with the default ODE engine supplied with OpenSim, they have tweaked their own. Lag is a lot less noticeable, region crossings are stable. So, in some circumstances runs a great deal smoother than Second Life.
Avination in many respects is very much like other virtual worlds available on the internet, even Second Life. It may not yet be as comparable as Second Life, but it certainly holds its own against the long standing virtual world. Avination may not have very many users per day and this is something it will continue to struggle with as with many other virtual worlds against Second Life. Avination seemed to have a good start at things when users where able to not only transfer their money between C$ and L$, but also items in their inventories and avatar names. Linden Labs has since, only recently put a stop to all of this and Avination has taken quite a blow from that.
However, if Second Life users where looking for a change in virtual worlds, Avination is up there as a strong competitor. A lot of work has been put into making Avination a polished, professional package that a lot of other virtual worlds could take a few lessons from. So, if you are wanting to get out there and explore the big wide world of grid-based virtual worlds, Avination would be a great place to start.