Friday, November 20, 2009

Top 5 reasons people are addicted to Second Life

By guest blogger Clark Bell
Second Life is your chance to have, well, a second life. Call it, a way to create an alter ego for yourself in the virtual world and try all things that you otherwise wouldn’t have had the chance to do in your real life. For those who are uninitiated into the workings of Second Life; it is an online video game that allows you to create a new ‘you’ in the cyber world, in a place that is totally alienated from your real surroundings, existing only in the form of graphics and in the imaginations of the players. Second Life came into existence on 23rd June 2003 and was created, developed, and designed by Linden Lab. In the Second Life world, you can do all that you do or wanted to do in your real world. Talk, walk, play, entertain, conduct business, buy properties, find love, and even have sex. There is a surreal economy with functioning businesses and a thriving real estate market with ‘Linden Dollar’ being the official currency. Players can create an identity for themselves through avatars and go around living in the other world the way they choose to live. And for you to have a second chance at life, all that is needed is to download a free client program called the Second Life Viewer apart from meeting the basic system requirements.

Who would want to miss out on a chance to have a second life, for free? Nobody, except people like Bill Gates or other successful celebrities that have made it big in real life and would prefer living in this world in comparison to the one in cyber space. The problem is…Second Life has also brought with it a lot of problems for people in real life. The main problem, as in most online games, is addiction. There has been a lot of opposition to Second Life, lately, and there are many gamers, themselves, who are coming out in the open complaining about their addiction problems. Along with World of Warcraft, Second Life must rank as one of the most addictive games available now. There are numerous stories doing the rounds on the Internet about people losing jobs, boyfriends, girlfriends, wives and husbands on account of addiction to Second Life. In short, many people seem to lose their first lives or real lives in their quest for second lives.

So, what makes Second Life so addictive? Though there could be myriad of reasons, we’ve just listed 5 we think top the list.

  • Second Life offers you a chance to rewind time. It offers you the chance to roll back your life to a stage from where you can start doing things exactly the way you wanted, leaving no room for mistakes. In short, Second Life offers you a perfect life otherwise impossible in the real world.

  • The Second Life is a surreal world that is non-judgmental and lets you live life the way you choose to, without censorship.

  • Making friends, finding love, and meeting your materialistic goals are much easier in Second Life in comparison to real life.

  • Boredom, dissatisfaction, depression, loneliness, emotional insecurity, personality flaws, and too many expectations in real life can force one to seek all the answers in Second Life, which offers everything to a person looking for all answers to his or her imperfect life.

  • Second Life is an endless game, where there is no end and no definite winners. You can keep playing the game or living in the other world until such time you cease to exist in the real world. In Second Life, events are controlled by the players and not by fate or destiny.

The problem with most people whose real life has been affected by Second Life is that they fail to spot the boundaries between their real life and second life disappearing in the background while they’re playing. When the real world and cyber world merge to form a single world, it creates problems for people who cannot discriminate between the real and surreal. As long as Second Life is treated just as a game, and not as a place where you can exist infinitely making your own rules for life, it’s just as good and as bad as any other online video game.

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