A couple of years ago, one of the first recreations of a real life building I encountered in Second Life was the Seattle Space Needle, created by Mattias Faulkner. At the time, I remarked that while the tower itself was impressive, it lacked the context of place, amidst a vibrant Pacific coastal city.
In March, Harry Woodhen informed me that there was a new sim called "Seattle" that does indeed attempt to capture some more of the flavor of the city. Follow this link to teleport directly there. Here are some of my notes from my visit today.
The Seattle sim has a clean but urban feel to it, with a nice mixture of primmed structures and photo textures. There’s a "mixed-use" downtown area with shopping and residential buildings. I haven’t been to Seattle in years, so I’m not a good judge if this is reminiscent of the city or not. Looks pretty enough anyway.
Like the real world Seattle, the sim contains a Farmers Market displaying fresh produce, fish and other sundries.
As the birthplace of Starbucks, its inevitable that there would be a remarkably similar coffee establishment in virtual Seattle. While the "Slarbucks" coffee doesn’t have the same kick as Starbucks, it does have the advantage of being free.
Sure you can fly around the sim, but why not take the leisurely monorail that circles around the different neighborhoods?
All-in-all, a nicely structured build, with enough real world touches to make it interesting to visit. My only question was whether there were any cultural or artistic aspects to the sim, like live music events, art galleries or fashion shows. One of the best things about Seattle is its rich arts scene — it would be a shame if the virtual version didn’t emulate that.