Review – The Solarian Fitmesh Feline Furry Avatar from Blue Galaxy

Solarian Dancing - Front View
Solarian by Blue Galaxy (Ash Soyinka)
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Caisteal/149/44/29
Base: 800L
Feline Legs: 200L
Dev Kit: 0L (1L that is paid back to you)

This is something radically new – a full body fitmesh furry avatar.

Full body: This is the whole thing, from head to toe. It comes as one linked piece. No seams. Ok, two linked pieces if you get the legs – which you should. But still no seams with the legs.

Fitmesh: Shape dials work all over this thing. Most of the dials will adjust what they should. Facial dials don’t work because the fitmesh standard never covered them. But you can adjust things like headsize. Foot size works with the ‘plantigrade legs’ that comes with the body, but NOT with the addon digitigrade legs that are needed to be a proper feline.

Furry: Yeah. This one is a furry and sometimes I go furry. This is probably the best furry ever seen in Second Life and so I am going to try and explain just why that is in the review that follows. There is so much that is “right” about this avatar that the things that are wrong are quite forgivable. Though I will cover both.


So, here is the body from the front:
Solarian Front View of Genders
Wait… so… 3 genders or something… yeah. Note that the male is missing something obvious. You’ll have to get that on the ‘mods market’ as so far Blue Galaxy has not supplied it as an addon. That said I did see one example of the item in question on Marketplace when I searched for “Solarian” and then just went into the right category.
– This lack though, makes me wonder what that third gender is supposed to represent.

Here is the body from the back:
Solarian Back View of Genders
This is the same pose as that which I used for my Belleza review, for you to compare. Oh and the shape… is almost the exact same shape. So this is my Belleza shape for Freya, that you can get as a freebie, with some tweaks to the butt, saddle bags, and Love Handles to make the curves fit my style, and Leg muscle set to 50 as I set it on Isis (I lower it on freya to reduce the curve a bit).
– I’m telling you this because yet again a mesh body maker using shapes that detract from the beauty of the avatar… The one that comes with this is a lot better than the one that comes with Belleza, but it still had some issues, namely T-rex arms and way too big of a bottom compared to the top.

Here is the difference between nude and covered:
Solarian - Bits Uncovered vs Covered
This is triggered via the alpha HUD, oddly enough. Not shown in these images is that the upper and lower parts are fully modeled mesh on the female, and there is a ‘dimple’ where the anal cavity would be as well.


The basic Solarian package comes with:

  • 3 bodies (female, male, “femboy”) – you get all 3 in one purchase.
  • 1 HUD for alpha cuts and 8 included colors for each of eyes and body. Eyes can be done individually.
  • A “Readme” notecard you better read because you will be shocked at what is in it… (see below – this is a MAJOR part of what makes this avatar something radical).
  • A landmark to the store.
  • An ‘undeformer’ I have been unable to get to work. This causes some issues I will note below.
  • An outfit that is a lace female top and lace panties for the female or “femboy”. But no male clothing.
  • A shape file that I recommend just putting into a backup folder and forgetting about.

Missing are the cat legs, Digitigrade because I have no idea… the cat furry avatar ships with human legs (plantigrade, google it to learn how wrong this choice is), and the cat legs are a 200L addon, instead of the logical other way around.

With and Without the cat legs looks like this:
Solarian Legs - Plantigrade vs the Digitigrade Addon

Also… get the developer kit sold right next to the body. It says 1L, but it will pay you back 1L when you buy it… so just get it…


Once loaded the Solarian is absurdly lightweight:

Draw Weight:
Female: 6476 (5285 on plantigrade)
Male: 6220 (4836 on plantigrade)
Femboy: 6434 (5170 on plantigrade)

Script Usage:
Body: 48kb
Digitigrade Legs: 16kb

So… that is so low it makes you really wonder. I had to turn down my LOD setting and cam out…
My avatar got too small to see BEFORE she lost her shape… In other words, very high detail, WITHOUT driving up Draw Weight. And those 48kbs… They’re handling full eye, ear, tail, and mouth animation at a level of variety GREATER than furry avatars I have bought that needed 15mbs to do these things…

This thing is so lightweight and low on lag it feels like I am speeding SL up by logging into it… (being silly here… to try and hammer home the point that this avatar is done amazingly right on these points).

If everybody in SL decided to toss out their current avatars and switch to Solarians, lag would be the thing of the past. Other builders should start taking notes when they get this avatar. They should get it to learn something…

Oh and, remember how editing Belleza would freeze up my system… Edit this:
Solarian - Moddable and Lightweight
– what you don’t see in the screen shot is that this is like editing a single solo prim on an empty sim. No issues. And I’m right there in the texture box where I can start “messing with things”. IN fact I can go to the body, rez it, and start unlinking parts and putting new ones on. A Modder’s happy place.

12 land impact when rezzed:
Solarian - 12 Land Impact When Rezzed for Modding
Nice. I could have rezzed this in my old 256m plot of land.
PS: unlinking the tail and wearing it on a human body works, but the deformer is in the tail and it will make your human shape look very strange… so you can do it, but it will look horrible, or comical – depending on your mood I guess. πŸ™‚


Now we’re going to start getting to some less positive aspects…

The HUD is… limited.

The HUD comes in two parts, one for coloring and one for Alphas. You’ll use the coloring one to pick your fur. Do note that it is unusual for a Furry Avatar to give you all of the color choices in one normal priced purchase. As I will note below, you also get the PSD’s for the texture pattern in a download link.

Though they are good I didn’t like ANY of the choices, so I grabbed a different one on Marketplace:
Solarian Cheetah by Llweyndwell
This is by “Aten’Ka [Sun Soul]”
https://marketplace.secondlife.com/stores/170486
Llweyndwell, the owner of that brand, is doing such amazing work that I recommend budgeting in the purchase of one of the skins from Llweyndwell to the avatar price BEFORE buying the avatar. πŸ™‚

Solarian Eye and Fur Color HUD Tab
That said the eyes that come with it are really nice, so I’m still using one of those presets. And you can set a different color for each eye (heterochromia)

So… the real HUD you’ll need is the ALpha HUD, and it frankly isn’t that good:
Solarian Alpha HUD Tab
Now this is kind of forgivable because this is a furry avatar with a rather different body shape. Even if you could alpha things most regular clothing won’t work well. That has NOT stopped people from trying though. That said… this MIGHT be one reason why this avatar is so lightweight. Then again this HUD is about as detailed as that of the Lena Lush body, and that body is actually very heavy on draw weight (but gets light if you edit it and delete the tattoo and clothing layers).
– My thinking here is that with so few alpha cuts, there are less pieces to this avatar. And less stuff, if that stuff is done right, tends to also means less burden on the system.

So… if most of the clothing you will wear will have to have been made FOR this avatar, the alpha cuts are not as important. It would be very nice to have more of them, but I suspect the community will adapt around that limit on this one.


Also… if you have fullperms on your fur texture, you can edit it in photoshop, make your own alpha channel there, and upload the texture for a custom alpha cut…

And guess what… you do. Remember that notecard?

The Notecard with all the stuff in it:
The readme notecard is kind of short and useless, until you get to the dropbox link. download that file… It’s a .rar which is a kind of zip techies like that confuses the heck out of normal people. Macs understand it these days, not sure if PCs do or if you need to get some special program to open it.

But inside of it… are “PSD” files for the textures that came with the avatar, and a blender file that is a template for clothing makers and modders to use to make stuff. People are already turning out mods thanks to this.
Downloables Contents
You can open “PSD” files in Photoshop, or GIMP:
http://www.gimp.org/
Gimp is free by the way…

So is Blender is you think you want to take on messing with that blender file… most of the mesh in SL is either made in Blender, or prepped for use in SL with Blender.
http://www.blender.org/
– But that is an application that will take a lot of dedication to master.

Inside the Digitigrade Leg addon’s folder, is a similar notecard with a similar file you can download, that has similar features to it.

So this avatar really opens up right out of the gate with ease to modify and support for content makers.


Layers:
What layers? There are no layers for layer based clothing. That said there is already one modder on Marketplace who has managed to make a layer based leotard…


Omega:
Nope, not here. But Omega is kind of pointless here anyway. No UV maps from anything else will work with this avatar. Its a very different avatar, and it has a free dev kit.


Clothing Support:
Mostly it has to be made for this avatar. There is a growing list of clothing for the avatar, and most of that is being done as copy/mod so you can tailor it to your needs, and there is even a body of people putting out texture mods to other people’s clothing creations.

Some rigged mesh items will be able to fit – but be very careful to demo and test your AO out with it when you try this.

The avatar does come with some fullperms fitted mesh clothing:
Solarian included fullperms fitted mesh clothes

If you’re looking for more stuff for this avatar, just search Marketplace for “Solarian”.


Customer Support
Its pretty thin at this point. Blue Galaxy has an active mod community and the Blue Galaxy sim is a semi-active place that even has what look like roleplay spots. But much of this is devoted to their older avatar. You would have to ask around to find people to talk with. While the avatar’s dev kit comes with a link to a documentation website, it is a google doc’s page, and not a support portal.
The Blue Galaxy group:
https://my.secondlife.com/groups/6511fa88-b3a4-66d9-c126-affae9bae270
Does not appear to be in active use. At least it has no notices in it. But it might be a place to start.


Ranking:

Pros:

  • A fitmesh furry – this is in itself something long overdue and highly welcome.
  • Mod permissions – a breath of fresh air to have a mod fitmesh body. There are a few others, but each time I see one it is a very welcome sight.
  • Very lightweight low lag avatar
  • Visual appeal – this avatar is just very nice to look at, and animated very well.
  • Most of the skin makers seem to be including for the digitigrade legs in their applier as one purchase.
  • 8 fur colors and 8 eye colors in the base purchase. PLUS the PSD (photoshop / Gimp) file in a download link.
  • Included clothing is fullperms. Modkits already exist for it. The first and last images in this review show me wearing it with a bikini-mod kit I grabbed.

Cons:

  • Selling the cat legs to a cat furry as an addon. This is just baffling.
  • Not as many cuts in the alpha HUD as would be desired
  • Newness means not as much stuff out for it as I would like. I’m hoping that changes soon.
  • Activating the adult bits on the avatar is done by clicking the alpha for those spots on the alpha HUD. Hiding the body in those spots is done the same way… its all in how many times you click the spot, and you’re not paying attention you can get the wrong result…

Ps:
So in these images I am wearing:
*booN CIZ626 hair black/chocolate/purple – Chocolate modded with Red color.
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/SAIKIN/129/125/699

I am using the big bosom shape from my Belleza Proportionate Shapes Freebie:
https://marketplace.secondlife.com/p/FREE-Belleza-Freya-Proportionate-Shapes-And-Physics-Kit/7691358
Because this avatar is fitmesh, unlike other furries you don’t need to dial your head into all kinds of weird numbers and then wear a giant prim over the result. πŸ™‚

ON*SU Starter Apartment
I’m standing by the closet of this home, only sold on Marketplace:
https://marketplace.secondlife.com/p/ONSU-Starter-ApartmentTexture-Change/6010111
I reduced the size of this already small home to about 83% of its original because I’m obsessed with being ‘too-scale’.

The Pose Stand is my own freebie, but the pose is not in that freebie, and was from “Ran Peccable” / “taisaya AO”:
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Meet/251/102/22

And the Solarian Body (800L) is from Blue Galaxy:
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Caisteal/149/44/29

The Solarian Digitigrade Legs (200L) are also of course from Blue Galaxy

My skin is from “Aten’Ka [Sun Soul]” for 450L:
https://marketplace.secondlife.com/stores/170486

In the nude pics using the Cheetah skin I also used:
Solarian – Nipples and Bits – Naturals
https://marketplace.secondlife.com/p/Solarian-Nipples-and-Bits-Naturals/7630662
– Because they just looked a little nicer. But its a close call.

I have done two other cat furry reviews in the past, that you can look at as a sort of “how far have we come” experience:
https://catnapkitty.wordpress.com/2012/11/25/kinzart-domestic-cat-review-and-how-to-resize-a-furry-avatar-with-precision/
https://catnapkitty.wordpress.com/2010/08/30/my-new-avatar-derp-domestic-cat/

In my opinion… this Solarian is the only furry on the market anyone should consider right now. Mod it to other animals… but start here. It is fitted mesh after all. πŸ˜›

Solarian Dancing - Rear View

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Kinzart Queotl (Meeroo inspired) Furry Avatar review

Kinzart Queotl

Kinzart Queotl Meeroo
1000L$
+500L$ for optional traits kit.
Mod, Copy, No-Trans
Kinzart Mainstore

Meeroos have been out for quite some time now. Arguably past their prime, at least on the secondary market where the value of the nests is frustratingly low. But they’ve still yet to be unseated by any new trend.

But with that age, it might seem a little strange to see a meeroo inspired furry avatar coming out this late into things. However, the owner of Kinzart is a big fan of Meeroos and this avatar has apparently been on the table for a very long time.
Kinzart Queotl Meeroo
My recommendation is that this avatar is a great addition to a collection, something every Meeroo fan should get, and for many an ideal choice for your main ‘avatar look’. It is one of three that I am aware of. The others include an official ‘Tiny Mesh’ sold by Malevoy themselves, in a design that looks near identical to that of a Tokushi avatar, and a mod kit Meeroo based on the Chinchilla from Curious Inc. The Chinchilla mod kit is very nice as well, but more toonish – so this is a style choice. If you are a Tiny or enjoy the Tiny look, the mesh Tiny would be your choice, though it is not customizable (no-mod and full mesh).

Avatar Features:

Kinzart Queotl Meeroo Parts List
* Full selection of diurnal coats from the Meeroo lines from North America, Egypt, Africa, Japan, and Scotland.
* Trait pack includes ALL optional traits, and is bought by coat.
* Sculpted digitigrade legs
* Sculpted digitigrade feet
* Sculpted digitigrade hand paws – with independently poseable digits.
* Unrigged Mesh Tail (with 4 poses)
* Flexi Tail option
* Unrigged Mesh Ears
* Sculpty head (in 3 pieces for head, upper and lower jaw).
* Prim Eyes.
* UV maps for mesh parts
* Female and male shapes and skins (PG only)
* Unrigged Mesh Hair

Type/Speech responsive ears, jaw
AUC – Automated Update system – used to keep your avatar up to date, and to strip out optional customization scripts.

Impressions:

In general this is a very impressive avatar. A year ago it would have been cutting edge, but the use of sculpties is now dated in furry avatars.
Kinzart Queotl Meeroo
That said everything fits together very well, the coats really look and feel like Meeroos, and the avatar looks the part.

The use of UnRigged mesh for the ears, hair, and tail is ideal. UnRigged mesh, unlike Rigged mesh can be moved and rescaled to your needs, but gives you the high detail quick rendering options of mesh. That the rest is sculpty may be due to the long development time for the avatar.

Unlike the other Meeroo avatar options on the market, the legs and feet here are separate pieces. This makes it very easy to wear jeans with this avatar, and the cut for the foot fits those mesh jeans I have just perfectly. It does however mean that from time to time these parts can bend improperly.

Strong Points:

Kinzart Queotl Meeroo
The texturing is amazingly well done, leaving you feeling like you are on a meeroo. They are arguably better textured than ‘actual meeroos’ – and not just from being larger with more surface area. The skill is just simply top notch with Kinzart textures. The furry market right now to me feels like a race to the top between Kinzart and DSD, with competitors close or far behind (Tokushi is a hard call, but for me, just behind these two – for reasons of style and my personal tastes, which means they may be on top for others. The skill of all three is not to be missed).
Kinzart Queotl Meeroo

As with other recent Kinzart avatars, scripting is top notch and light weight.
Kinzart Queotl Meeroo
I don’t know if this was true in past, but at present Kinzart is a team of people, and the scriptor on that team delivers a solid punch in a very light tap – pressure point scripting so to speak. A few years back some Kinzart furries were so heavy Kinzart themselves notes customers getting tossed out of sims for wearing them. If that’s your memory of Kinzart, you need to go back over there and look at them again. The current avatars, and some updated old ones, are very well done. If you have one of those heavy scripted old avatars, chances are there is an update waiting for you on their sim (To be frank, it was only 1 or 2 of their dragon avatars from what I can find – I have some old kinzarts, and I find them normal for back when I got them – In fact I used to put them on around friends on human avatars and note how ‘even with all these parts going, my entire furry is still lighter scripted than just one of your shoes’).

This avatar is very animal and ‘realistic’ (for a made up animal on a furry). Unlike other Meeroo choices, it is not cartoony and I end up looking at it a long and trying to place what family in the animal kingdom it would fit into (kinda looks related to a kangaroo and a dingo to me). It would be a perfect creature in fantasy and science fiction roleplay in this design.

The head size is proportionately normal. Most newer furries no longer use the giant heads of old. Plenty of human hairs will fit it, but the snout may get in the way of some prims. A few mesh hairs I have tried fit onto it, but the majority have not.

The default shape is very well done, almost fitting the XS standard size of mesh clothes (leg muscles were much higher, but tuning it down didn’t impact the look much). The shoulders on the female here are slightly mannish, being a tiny fraction wider than the hips – but not too noticeable and easily tweaked.

Weaknesses:

The presence of sculpty parts feels dated. The avatar was in development for a very long time, so my guess is these sculpty parts pre-date mesh in SL. There are 3D modeling tools on the market now that will import a sculpty map and let you save out a collada format mesh file. So this could have been fixed, but perhaps only with a lot of work redoing the textures. That said the sculpty maps load pretty fast and I’ve yet to see myself doing that oldstyle furry-rez wait where look at the collapsed head and floating eyeballs and count to 3-billion…
Kinzart Queotl Meeroo
For sculpty, they are seriously well done – and seem to have sharp definition and no odd seams at the curves. See in the comments below – there’s a reason they were not converted to mesh. And zoom in one on of these – the sculpties really are well done. This is only a weakness in that mesh exists now and in theory renders sharper. But these are still some of the best sculpty parts I have seen. I’ve got a weakness section though, and gotta put something in it.

Customization:

This avatar is built to be modded. Right out of the gate the traits kits offered up a collection of ready to go options.
Kinzart Queotl Meeroo Traits
You can see my recent blog on the Kinzart cat for resizing tips. All of which will work here as well.

Hairs will mostly fit the avatar, but will require some minor edit to pull strands out of the eyes or snout. Nothing unusual for many furry avatars. For rigged mesh hair – do demo before buying. Some will work, most will not.

Kinzart Queotl Meeroo HUD Cover
The HUD is typical of Kinzart, simple yet rich on features.
Kinzart Queotl Meeroo HUD Attachment Settings
Ears, tail, eyes, hands, claws, mouth, tongue, etc – all can be customized. A number of elements can be colored from within the HUD.

Kinzart Queotl Meeroo HUD Hands
Note this. Here on the hands part of the HUD, you can give individual poses to each digit. This is one area where Kinzart is clearly ahead of some competition. Some furry avatar makers do this and some do not. Those who do are much appreciated. It may seem trivial, but almost every day on my copy of the Kinzart cat my eye catches the hand poses I use and it just makes the avatar feel ‘alive and homey (lived in).’ All of that is here in the Queotl as well.

Kinzart Queotl Meeroo HUD Colors

Conclusion:

Like the Kinzart Domestic Cat, I have been very happy with this choice. While disappointed in the use of sculpty parts, my overall impression was very position. Enough so that I have bought it 3 times for alts, and have been considering a fourth purchase. If you want a Meeroo avatar or just a unique animal that still looks “familiar” and not too far out there, it is worth getting.
Kinzart Queotl Meeroo

Unlike the cat, it comes in some of the riot colors. Blues and purples and such. This is mostly true to the Meeroos, but there were four special limited coats during pre-release and for 48 hours shortly after launch. One of these was purple, seen in the shots above because it came with both my Phantom and Congo choices. I’m not partial to it, but it was a favorite of the designer. If you like it, there are some blue choices that are similar. And Kinzart hopes to have more coats with time.

Kinzart Domestic Cat Review – and how to resize a Furry Avatar with precision

Kinzart Domestic Cat

Kinzart Domestic Cat

1000L$
Mod, Copy, No-Trans
106507 – Draw Weight
Kinzart Mainstore

The Kinzart vendors selling this avatar come with no info or labeling. It was something of a wild guess at what I would get when buying it – which is something that for 1000L many might not be willing to do. That said, hopefully this review will give folks enough information to make a choice.

My recommendation, is that if you want a cat furry, this is a very solid good buy. The only other “domestic cat” furry I really enjoy using day to day is the DSD Ocelot – a different but similar looking species.

Avatar Features

Kinzart Domestic Cat Package Contents
* Wide selection of natural fur colors
* Male and Female PG skins, tattoo layer for female M.
UnRigged Mesh digitigrade legs
UnRigged Mesh digitigrade foot paws
UnRigged Mesh digitigrade hand paws
Paws have retractable claws.
UnRigged Mesh Tail with 4 position choices
UnRigged Mesh Head, Jaw, Eyes, and Ears.
3 texture choices for nose tip and paw pads – individually settable.

Extra texture maps for some parts.
Type/Speech responsive ears, jaw
– No optional pieces.

AUC – Automated Update system – used to keep your avatar up to date, and to strip out optional customization scripts.
Kinzart Domestic Cat AUC
– Don’t wear it like I did, or it will rez at a funny angle. Its one use once rezzed, so delete the rezzed one when done, and just rez another when you need it again.

Impressions

This is a very impressive cat avatar, and shows Kinzart has come a long way in quality since I last gave them a look some two years ago. Parts fit together well, and move gracefully with my AO – even after a significant resizing (more on that later).
Kinzart Domestic Cat Sitting
They are not quite up to the level with mesh seen in Dark Spot Designs – where you have animated unRigged Mesh in elements such as the rabbit’s foot and leg. But Kinzart is a close second.

The use of UnRigged mesh makes this avatar ideal. UnRigged mesh, unlike Rigged mesh can be moved and rescaled to your needs, but gives you the high detail quick rendering options of mesh.
Kinzart Domestic Cat Sideview
The legs and feet are separate elements. A number of recent furry avatars have fused these into one piece – which presents complications when wearing pants, unless a special foot option is provided. By keeping them to two pieces here, you can wear most pants with just the feet – particularly good with mesh pants. However it also means there is a seam at the join between the leg and foot.

Strong Points:

Kinzart Domestic Cat Front Texture
The cat is very well textured, with a rewarding attention to detail that leaves the fur feeling natural. The choices in colors are broad – covering many cat varieties. The style choice of hair behind the legs and under the tail was off-putting at first, but quickly grew on me.
Kinzart Domestic Cat Back Texture

The script memory is so light as to be non-existent. This is no minor point – this thing is super light weight, even with the HUD going.
Kinzart Domestic Cat Script Info
The avatar looks very catlike, appealing and ‘cute’, but without being cartoony. That is a very difficult balance to strike. In every competing cat I’ve tried, they either look catlike -or- attractively cute by being cartoony. This one just looks like a cat, but not something Dr. Evil would carry around.

The head size is proportionately normal. Not a giant cartoon furry head. As a result, as I note below, it works with human hair, and even fits rigged mesh hair !!!

Weaknesses:

I avoided buying the Kinzart cat at first due to the unanimated mesh tail. I have seen both a mermaid tail and the DSD Rabbit single-piece leg/foot that were capable of motion. I’m a big fan of flex tails for furries as I like to see it flow around as I move about.

That said this is a preference issue and not quality issue – and this mesh tail is amazingly well done. So well done that if I were now offered a flex tail I am unsure if I would want to use it. You cannot get this level of detail out of a flex tail. It would be nice to see some animations in it, but I have no idea if this can be done (the answer, if possible, might be in how the mermaid tail I’ve seen animates, or the DSD bunny’s feet).

I had some trouble lining up the paw pads with the wrist after a resizing. The default female shape of the avatar is 5′ 10″ Agent, 6′ 5″ prim height – which is a tad oversized in today’s era (my prim height is 5′ 4″).

The tattoo layer for female parts is a nice touch and good way to do the M version, but seems blurry. There was no tattoo layer for the male chest, but it can be made by modding the female tattoo to be upper only.

Customization + Resizing a furry avatar the right way:

There is no included head hair with this avatar – but the shape of the head is such that most hairs can easily fit it. Unlike every other furry avatar I have tried, I have even been able to fit rigged mesh hair to this avatar – both before and after resizing it. I’ve rarely seen anyone use the head hair that shipped with a furry. So I list this under customization rather than weakness – this avatar has no need for an included hair, nor even for modding hair you buy. Just shop right alongside your human friends and sigh at the other furries trying to move that last strand into place.

The whiskers use the same attachment point as the head – use ‘add’ when wearing them. They are default white – so you can tint them to match head hair choices.

Kinzart Domestic Cat HUD
The HUD is simple yet rich on features. Ears, tail, eyes, hands, claws, mouth, tongue, etc – all can be customized. A number of elements can be colored from within the HUD.
Kinzart Domestic Cat HUD Page 1
Kinzart Domestic Cat HUD Page 2
The four options for nose and paw pad textures, individually chosen, was a very nice bonus item. Funny how such a little thing helps to add so much character.
Kinzart Domestic Cat HUD Page 3

Resizing by the numbers

The included shape seemed to be a tall version of the Standard Sizes XS – mesh clothes at that size fit me with no pop through. But because of how tall the avatar was, and my own shape being 11 inches shorter, I felt a need to resize when applying my shape.

My first attempt involved selecting all the parts and using stretch – this put everything into the wrong alignment, and was not precise. I then got out the linkset resize script I “sell” (a freebie, and one which is actually put out by the lindens on the wiki, I just package it for convenience). This script works by only needing a single copy in each object (root prim only). You put it into each piece, and then type in chat:

/4 0.842697
(my shape height divided by the avatar’s default shape height equaled that number).

– and it shrinks everything in chat range that you own that has the script by a multiple of that amount. MUCH MORE PRECISE than a touch based resizer.

After doing this I only had to do some minimal movement of parts – putting the head in place to where the eyes were, moving the jaw back into position (take before screenshots to compare), and changing some head and eye shape dials to get the eyes just right.

I then took the script -out- of all the parts, detached them, and wore them again. MAKE SURE TO REMOVE THOSE RESIZER SCRIPTS once done. The free one I put out needs to be removed by hand, deleting it from the contents of the object’s root prim. Not being a touch based script, its more controllable but more manual (I prefer this, touch based scripts make it very hard to walk around in SL – I click the back of my avatar so I can move and mouse turn, and instead I get a pop-up window… /grrr… I’m always having to delete touch scripts or trash no-mod items with them).

The final result, as I hope my screenshots show, was just perfect. Because the default Kinzart Cat also uses the XS stanard size, or something amazingly close – my screenshots still look as the purchased cat will, just shorter.

This same number has been great for changing a lot of my furniture made for giant avatars down to my own scale.
Using the Linkset Resizer Scripts

Conclusion:

Very happy with the avatar at this point. So far it feels just right. Would like to see a little more info about it from Kinzart, and would like to see legs and a tail that lacked the under hair for comparison.

Kinzart Domestic Cat Vendor
Some will be bothered by the lack of ‘green’, ‘purple’, ‘raver glow blue’, and ‘neon magenta’ colors – but I like that the avatar, at least presently, only comes in natural tones. Let those canine freaks go purple and glowing blue. πŸ˜‰

Cats are proud and should have more dignity than that. :p
Kinzart Domestic Cat Standing

New Bunny Furry from Dark Spot Designs – Amazing partial-mesh furry


My alt Bunny has been languishing for years on an avatar I was only partly happy with.

I’ve never been happy with the rabbit offerings in Second Life, for furries. Some amazingly good makers have skipped this one by, some other amazing makers have dabbled in it with results that were just not to my tastes despite loving their other work.

This new furry is just everything I’ve ever wanted in a rabbit furry – all in one package of pure goodness, from a builder who’s recent offerings have been just dynamite.

Ps: I’ve never met the person(s) behind DSD, never spoken/chatted with them, didn’t get a darn thing to motivate me to write this.

In fact I found the avatar by chance. I bought another DSD avatar for Pussycat some months back (The Ocelot) and seriously fell in love with it. This weekend I was seriously bored, and teleported over there after looking at slarf.org and seeing no interesting reviews.

It wasn’t even the first furry shop I hit. I was just doing that random… lets go through my LMs folder and see what’s up… boredome cure. Saw rabbits, logged out of that alt and sent Bunny over there in a flash.

Took me about 2 minutes to make the choice – the preview art was enough to tell me that it was worth a gamble. I saw the note that I needed a mesh viewer as I was clicking buy. But that’s fine – I use a lot of mesh these days. Who doesn’t?

I’ve seen a few full mesh furry avatars on the grid – and not been satisfied with them. They’re all just a bit too different from the base look of an SL avatar. Very cartoony, or for tiny creatures or alien monsters.

This one isn’t that. Its a partial mesh in the same way most current furries are partial sculpty. You take a human avatar, and wear the furry parts, then put on an alpha map to hide your feet, hands, and human head.

In other words you can still wear all your current clothing.

But because its mesh, it can do things you just can’t do with a sculpty based furry, like the way the feet bend when my avatar taps her foot sitting on a stool:

That’s all one mesh piece. In a sculpty avatar, you would need a foot and a leg piece – and be able to see where they met, or they would be fused stiff. Mesh can bend, if its rigged.

Here are the SLARF like stats on this avatar:

Out of the Box:

It came with 2 complete copies for each gender – two variations on the color I bought. Not sure if this is common to the other colors or not. Each had:

Features Permissions and Statistics
  • Male/Female PG and Mature Skins
  • 1 shape.
  • Digitigrade Legs with feet in one piece
  • Cut Digitigrade Legs with feet in one piece – for wearing pants, Woohoo!
  • Plantigrade Feet
  • Flexi tail
  • Hair – Which I have not used
  • Ear/Eyes/Mouth/Tail options in HUD
  • Speech Gestures
  • 2 Alpha Textures:
    • Head, Digi legs, and hands
    • Head, Planti feet, and hands
  • Floppy Ears
  • Pierced Ears
  • Floppy Pierced Ears
  • Head with Piercings
  • Jaw with Piercings
  • Modifiable
  • Copiable
  • Not Transferable
  • Avatar Draw WEIGHT
    • 24671
  • Script Info:
    • 114kb – 16kb each for 2xhands, 1xjaw, 2xears, 2xeyes, 2xlegs
    • 32kb – head
    • 64kb – Tail
    • 64kb – HUD
  • DSD Shop Location
  • L$900



That said I’ve not unpacked the male copy, so I can’t say if it is different. I’m assuming its the same goodies.

I used my own shape with the avatar, as I found the included one too slim and not well fitting to the ‘standard sizes’ mesh clothing that is so popular these days.

– As a result I had to use a different alpha map instead, but there is a box of free alpha maps at the DSD store, and the one in there that is for head, hands, legs, and feet is 99% identical to the one with this avatar – with the 1% difference being in the neck, right were I was having trouble with my shape, so it solved my problems perfectly.

Lets look at something about this skin tone, that goes to the heart of my problems with past avatars. She’s black. NOT grayscale… but actually black. In 2009 I lambasted the then selection for black furred furries because the artists were using a common technique for simulating black on a screen of instead using shades of gray. This is done so that you can have highlights and shadows.

BUT ITS WRONG.

Its one of those art school things you learn. that is actually incorrect. Go to design school and you will learn something else about black in print design… never use black…

Um… but that’s what the art school folks say too right?

Nope. Slightly different… In design school we learned to use colors – not gray or black ink, but to ADD a bit or CMY to your K (K is black ink, the others are Cyan, Magenta, Yellow – this is how comic books got the nickname 4-color).

Guess what? The same thing works on screen.

Instead of using gray shades to do black… use a very very very dark color for the shadows, a slightly less dark midnight blue for the base, and a midnight blue for the highlights. The result is an almost silky vibrant glossy sheen to things like fur.

This rabbit doesn’t do it with midnight blue, but with earth tones. Zooming in I see a subtle hint of earth tones for highlights. It is just enough to work:

And that folks… allows you to have a black furry that actually looks black, not gray. Finally somebody who learned the same lesson I did, however they learned it, and put it to good use on an avatar. Not just any avatar, but a bunny. This was key to me because my original desire was to make a Bunny furry that would be named after the black rabbit of Watership Down. My alt Bunny predates my neko days… she started back when I thought you needed a character in Second Life – and so a roleplay story… so the first thing I did was go looking for the right concept… and found nothing but gray… As a result Bunny was actually on a human avatar for the first few months, then I found a place selling a ‘hybrid’ like a rabbit version of a neko… and I just colored the skin with a black square texture until developing my Midnight Skin (a low cost skin I still have in my shop)… and finally giving up and going gray…

Now I’ve got a Black with Brown avatar… but I’m thinking of getting the solid black one as well. πŸ™‚

Unfortunately, because I finally have an rabbit avatar that I like, I was then forced to go and buy 3000L worth of clothing and accessories for her… Oops… πŸ˜€

There were plenty of color choices too, black, black and brown, black and light brown, black and gray, black and white, brown, and then all of that other stuff. πŸ™‚

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