See, when free play was introduced in CoH, free players couldn't IM people, couldn't email people, couldn't join supergroups, and couldn't talk in any channel beyond Help. This, naturally, reduced the honest and sincere questions that Help channel gets from time to time to so much pink noise--most of it grating and unnecessary in Help.
Now, there's the new Looking for Group channel, which can be clicked on to open, or simply use "/lfg" to pop it up. While this will also result in a lot of unnecessary pink noise in LFG, it should lessen the yammering in Help. Which is all we really wanted.
Of more import, free players can now be invited to Supergroups! Originally, this ban--like the ban on IMs and emails--was to prevent gold spammers from further infesting the game. (As soon as the Free-to-Play option was announced, we, like all other big MMOs, got INUNDATED with gold spammers. Or, in the case of their version of coinage, influence and infamy spammers.) Since most spammers are not at ALL interested in advancing past level one, getting an invite by proving you're a human, not a leech should be ridiculously easy.
Australian game channel GINX has released their Final Fantasy Guide to Hair--which is funny, surreal, and occasionally baffling. If you ever played any iteration of Final Fantasy, take five minutes and watch it. It's well worth your time.
So, I'm now using Niran's Viewer, because I loathe it less than any other V3-structured viewer, and because I've been struggling for the past three days simply to connect with Cool-VL. (And, considering I'm not male, and Mr. Beauchamp ignores any bug report sent to him from the distaff gender, it's not worth my time to send in a bug report he won't pay attention to anyway. Better to simply abandon the viewer as a waste of time. Why yes, I am bitter about this, why do you ask?)
There are a lot of different settings on Niran's I don't understand yet, though I'm working through them. I've managed--with the help of a concerned friend (read, "concerned" as "why are you screaming at me?") to get things more or less in working condition for me. (And in this case, read "working" as "I've effectively rendered part of Niran's crippleware, because I hate V3 viewers that much".)
Thing is, I don't have another option. My system isn't advanced enough for Exodus (though said concerned friend is trying to convince me to give it a try again); I refuse to use Firestorm (that's not going to change, ever); and I'd rather spoon our my own eyes than use the official viewer. (Seriously, I'm not exaggerating when I say that. Lindens, if you're listening, yes, the hash you made of the SL official viewer is so loathesome to me, I'd rather blind myself and leave Second Life forever than continue to play. I'm not sugar-coating this at all--V3 is that bad.)
But--in said partially-argumentative conversation last night--I did discover part of why I hate V3 with such a fiery vengeance. (Well, beyond the layout, the reconfiguration points, the sidebar, the top bar, the way movement works, the way changing clothes works, the difficulty in USING THE DAMN VIEWER IN THE FIRST PLACE--)
What I discovered was that only two things really make it a pass-or-fail option for me: and half of that conclusion comes from toasts and chiclets.
Here's why: while this no doubt is different for users of Linux or Mac systems, in PC systems, the stop-all-programs/emergency/alert notifications come in on the lower right-hand corner. Which means I am instinctually trained to drop everything and put my attention to whatever's popping up, because it--on Windows--means there's something DIRE going on.
The decision by Studio 8020 to spend part of the seven figures Linden Lab paid them on pushing standard, everyday "you got a thing"/"you're talking to someone" notifications into the lower right-hand corner--that emergency/alert/attend to this NOW! corner--means that as soon as I log into ANY V3 viewer--including Niran's--I am immediately enraged. I'm not even kidding. It's not even zero to bitch, it's zero to STAB MOTHERFUCKERS NOW, and part of that is because things are flashing in the lower right-hand corner, and I can't get them to stop.
Because in my head, I know that things in the lower right-hand corner are not a system stop emergency, but I feel like I have to drop everything and attend to them anyway, and it absolutely infuriates me every time. This results in one of two things happening. Either:
- a), I do drop everything, then close each and every toast and chiclet I can close, thus missing out on all that information, or
- b) I don't drop everything, because I know it's not important, and then things sit there and build up and keep flashing until I storm away from Second Life in a huff.
Again, not kidding, not exaggerating. That's what happens. Every single damned time. And while there are other reasons I hate V2/V3 viewers (oh, so many other reasons), that's the main one. That is the single issue that, if fixed, would result in far less stress on me, on those around me (because anyone who IMs me during one of these anger management breaks either gets ignored or yelled at), and far more time spent in-world rather than doing anything other than Second Life.
The same friend (poor, long-suffering soul) told me that I could just ignore the toasts, because they'd go away after a while. I just counted, standing in my skybox, how long it takes those notifications to fade. Eight. Seconds. And after those eight seconds have passed, and the actual notifications leave? I STILL HAVE THE LITTLE ENVELOPE STARING AT ME. Which does not, I repeat, NOT go away. EVER.
Until I attend to it.
Which means that, less than thirty seconds in on Second Life, and already my hands are shaking, I want to throw things, and I'm pretty much done for the day. It's insane. How hard is it to NOT HAVE THAT GODDAMN SETTING?
And don't get me started on how difficult, cumbersome, over-complicated and insane it is to join groups! I just want to JOIN A GROUP! GIVE ME THE GODDAMN JOIN TEXT! DIIIIIE!
I'm...going to go lay down now, and maybe sew something to something else. I think you all get the point.
And I've now set myself up for months of this crap, because I can't use any other reasonable alternatives, and because Henri's a bigoted ASS. On occasion, I hate my life.
And this is not a "steampunk" outfit. What the hell is wrong with people??