The previous episode of Dabbling with Geralt already dates back to March 1st. This time around I wanted to combine the Signature Geralt body with the Catwa Victor head because that’s a particular combination I hadn’t made yet.
My skin choice this time is from Stray Dog. They have a new applier for Catwa heads at this month’s Man Cave event, but I don’t think this is an exclusive for the event, so the skin should eventually show up at their store. Still, if it’s what you want, what you really really want, you better slam your body down and zigazig ha at Man Cave before June 11th. (Spice Girls lyrics? that’s so random!) This skin is named Jay and seems to be inspired by Game Of Throne’s Jaime Lannister, portrayed by Danish actor Nikolaj Coster-Waldau. You can make it look more like him by using the shape and eyebrow shape that comes with the skin. Personally I prefer not to recreate the sales poster. The skin comes with its own beard option, but it has some grey hairs in it, which wasn’t what I wanted for this look, so I applied the Bristle beard from Birth. The body applier from Stray Dog is made for the Signature Gianni body, but appears to be working fine with Geralt too. The underwear is by Thirst. They stopped supporting the Signature Geralt body a couple of months ago, but if you take a look at their earlier JOCKD sets, you’ll find some nice underwear that’s rigged for Geralt.
While I was at Man Cave, I also picked up some new outfits for Geralt.
This white shirt and pair of casual red trousers is by RKKN. Truth be told, the shirt isn’t a 100% perfect fit for Geralt, as I see a bit of skin pocking through on the back and I can’t hide it with the alpha hud because that will create a visible gap. I do like how that shirt is pulled open though. Sometimes SL is about accepting minor imperfection for the benefit of other features you really appreciate.
I was particularly charmed by the shorts and sweater by Etiquettte. I think this brand is related to RKKN, or at least they share a sim. The sweater does NOT seem to have the same fitting issues as the t-shirt though, so let’s all take a moment to thank goodness for small mercies.
There might be a new pair of shoes at Man Cave that would go with both these outfits, but I got my sneakers at Native Urban.
Head over to the Romp event to get your freak on. It started about a week ago and lasts till May 25th. It’s bursting with playful sexy slutty tasteful skimpy little nothings for female avatars, some adult furniture and just the occasional menswear item thrown in. I’m part of the Thirst blogging corps and they have a rather snazzy looking Collared Harness at this event, so I thought I’d head over to the event in search of a suitable bottom to combine it with.
Bingo! I think the Zion Leggings by Matova are just the thing! For some reason wearing a harness often compels me to pop on some wings. It’s a kind of naughty fallen angel thing, I guess. Back in the day I used to go to a club named Heaven. It was just around the corner from another club named Hell. Such fun!
Shown on the Belleza Jake body with the Catwa Stanley head , Erwin skin by Stray Dog (that particular skin isn’t in the current Stray Dog range) and Vango Zack hair. The mesh ears are by Mandala. Tattoo by Taox and wings by Blueberry.
The May edition of JOCKD is available for purchase at the Thirst store now. Sadly if you didn’t pre-order, you’re missing out on the extra 3rd pair of underpants. The good news is that you can pre-order the June edition now and you have time until June 4th to do so.
I’ve already shown the Midway Brief from the May JOCKD and now I’m zooming in on the tantalising City Brief. As indicated by the name, the textures in this colourful brief refer to various cities. That’s good news for those that live in or have affinity with San Francisco, New York, Amsterdam, Paris, Toronto or London. I’m wearing the pre-order exclusive Tokyo version myself.
And then there’s the sexy Jockini Brief you’re missing out on if you didn’t pre-order. Usually the set does consist of only two underwear items though, but this was an extra one to celebrate the half year anniversary of JOCKD.
Hooray! Smart people who subscribed to JOCKD, which is a kind of underwear club subscription box thing at Thirst, will have received their goodies at the beginning of this week. As usual the items will be available for the gen pop on the 12th of the month. At that point you’ll miss out on some exclusive textures and you’ll pay a little more, but personally I think the boxes are always good value for money. If you pre-order the price is L$400, the full price is L$600. That’s not bad for two completely different underwear items usually with about 6 to 8 textures each. This month the subscribers actually got an exclusive 3rd pair of undies that won’t be included in the set.
The Midway brief is one of the two items you’ll find in the set. A classic pair of long cut boxer briefs, perfect for standing on the balcony of your futuristic habitat pod, overlooking a desolate landscape… or is that just me? You can “dress up” the boxers briefs with the Thirst Crop Tee… gosh, that makes it almost formal wear!
Shown on the Belleza Jake body with the Catwa Victor head, Arthur skin by Stray Dog (this particular skin was a hunt item and isn’t available at the store) and Modulus Bailey hair. The mesh ears are by L’etrê. Add-on nipples by Noche were used for extra perkiness.
Yesterday I picked up a bunch of demos from the May round of The Mens Dept and tried them all on. Today I went back to purchase my selection. The event runs till almost the end of May, so I still had plenty of time, but there’s no time like the present and procrastination is the thief of time etc. Or to quote The Doctor: “People assume that time is a strict progression from cause to effect but actually from a non linear, non subjective view point it’s more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly timey wimey… stuff.” The aim is of course to get the NX-Nardcotix David mesh body dressed.
First up are these trousers by Aitui. They’re not quite sweatpants, but they do look comfy and roomy. The straps are an edgy detail and by some miracle, I personally didn’t have to adjust my shape to fit into the TMP size.
Tori Torricelli has a very nice summer outfit consisting of an open shirt with short sleeves and a pair of shorts. Unfortunately I couldn’t make the shirt work with David. Fortunately both items can be bought separately and with a bit of shape editing David can fit into the shorts, using the Enzo size.
If you’re in the mood for something more layered then Hevo has got you covered with their puffer vest and hoodie. I’m using the Gianni size and paired it with NX-Nardcotix cargo pants and boots from their store. This is the perfect outfit for wandering around on those sims that have a rustic and not quite so warm feel about them.
Equally suitable for such wanderings is the bomber jacket and sweater by Lenox. I didn’t even bother to put on another pair of trousers. The rustic rather romantic sim I found for my wandering is Borneo. The sound of seagulls and crashing waves are rather good to mellow out with on a Friday evening.
To round things up I’m switching back to lighter attire with this shirt by Etham at TMD, paired with NX-Nardcotix shorts from their store and a pair of Versov sneakers I also found at TMD. I remember that Etham at some point supported the David avatar but now I have to make do with other sizes, like in this case the TMP size.
Thanks to their lack of communication it is difficult to keep track of what TMP is doing. Some weeks ago they shut down their sim and announced a new era was just around the corner. Now they have started up again. Things look very different and I do not care for their new setup at all. It’s a series of graphics on walls with clickable areas that work like transporters. Maybe I’m boring, but excuse me for preferring something as outlandish as a store I can walk around in! At least they got rid of that ridiculous system of having to buy their credits before you could pay for anything. Now you just pay them directly with Linden Dollars. Finally they’re doing something normal.
TMP released new male and female bodies which they are calling Legacy and they have also updated their previous body which now is referred to as Classic. I’m leaving the Legacy body for another post to take a look at the upgraded Classic body first. The full price is L$ 5000, but if you already own the body, you can get the upgrade for L$ 2500. So it doesn’t like TMP will be coming down to more reasonable prices anytime soon.
This clarifies why TMP only added bento hands to the previous upgrade and made no other changes. When I bought the original TMP body it came with the promise of ONE free upgrade. By releasing the very limited upgrade first they technically fulfilled that promise, which now enables them to charge for this next upgrade. Meanwhile all the other mesh body creators offer free upgrades and sell at a lower price. I’m tutting at you TMP! tut.tut.tut.
With the previous body the hands and feet were separate, now it is one piece only. Where we used to have to content with two different huds for styling and hiding body parts, there is now one “Edit” hud that contains everything.
I don’t want to go through the entire hud, but there are a couple of tiny things that are worth noticing, because they are easy to miss. On the first page you’ll see a small icon that looks like a neck. This is where you toggle between two neck settings. If you are seeing a big gap between your body and head, give this button a click and your neck should snap into place (this reminds me of Dead Becomes Her). On the second page there’s a button that lets you filter the number of skins you get to see and gives you the choice to see “old content”. It is supposed to show you the skins that you installed in the old StyleMode hud. Mine weren’t there when I first put on the hud and now some of have arrived, but not all. I have been told by TMP’s support that only skins that were installed before October 2018 will be in the new hud. This is going to be cumbersome.
When I was buying the upgrade, I saw someone at The Shops with a TMP head on the classic body. There are no TMP heads available at the moment and obviously many people have moved on to bento heads. Still, the look of a TMP body AND head is the first one I wanted to revisit with this upgrade.
The neck seam was always great with this combination and while the skin still matches perfectly, there now seems to be a small gap between the head and body. I have notified TMP’s support, so maybe they’ll try and fix it.
I’ve always had a weakness for this particular skin on the old TMP head. I think it’s named Blue. Another thing I still like about the TMP body is it’s ability to have an ass you can rest a pint of beer on (or a cup of tea). It’s a shame the heads haven’t been upgraded to bento, but let’s face it: that wasn’t going to be a free upgrade either. The ripped jeans in this shot are by Cold Ash and the hair is Bailey by Modulus.
Another thing I (still) like about TMP is that each of their skin tones comes in various styles, so you can look very chiselled or a bit softer and smooth as a baby’s behind or quite hairy. The shorts, underwear and swimwear are by Noche.
Quite recently I put together a look with the TMP head, the Catwa Stanley bento mesh head and the Keith applier for Catwa heads by Bold & Beauty and their matching applier for the TMP body. Go take a look at that if you want, I’ll wait for you here… Great, you’re back! Let’s see if I can recreate this look with the upgraded body, even if I don’t have access to the Bold & Beauty applier for this upgraded body yet.
The first step was to choose a standard TMP skin close too the Bold & Beauty No.6 skin tone I’m using on the Catwa head. Annoyingly the skin tones in the TMP hud are not numbered, so I had to start counting from the palest skin to know which one I was going to use. No. 10 looked like a good match for me. Next I had to go in the second page of the skin tab and click the corresponding neck blender (No. 10) to apply it to the body. After that I had to apply a matching neck tattoo on the Catwa head. The TMP body comes with a folder that contains neck blenders for all the skin tones. I located the correct number and right-clicked the item to copy its Asset UUID. Then I opened the Catwa Master Hud, went into the tab that contains the neck tattoo, made sure I had the “lower” layer selected, clicked the button that says “Apply your own texture”, pasted the asset UUID in the box and clicked the submit button and hey presto, I had a less obvious neck seam. It’s far from perfect, but then again neck seams so very seldom are, but at least there is no gap with this combination of body and head.
Left is without the neck blenders, middle and right is with neck blenders. It’s that age old story again of “it depends what windlight you’re using”. While I have been working on this blog post spread over a couple of days, more of the appliers I had for the old TMP body have started to show up in the new hud. I don’t know what that means for appliers you can purchase from skin creators today. I imagine that either the skin creators or TMP will have to do some more work to make it so that you can easily install their appliers in the new hud.
Next I wanted to take a closer look at the alpha hud because that definitely is a big improvement on the previous version. Not good enough to warrant the L$ 2500 for the upgrade, but a lot nicer nonetheless.
I’ve put on some clothes to see where the body is poking through. The alpha hud shows a body shape divided into areas. You can click inside an area and drag to start filling it, or double click to flood the area. There are also buttons to quickly hide complete parts of your body. There are no alpha save slots, but there is an interesting export function. Once you’ve got your items of clothing to fit, you click the export button, a box will float in front of you and you will be given the opportunity to name it. You can then right-click and take this box. As soon as you add this box to your outfit, it will be attached as an invisible hud and it will automatically alpha-out the areas of your body as you defined it with the alpha hud. When you remove it, your body parts become visible again. Basically this is a do-it-yourself auto alpha function.
The shirt, jeans and sneakers used for this example are all by Deadwool and include a TMP size. I had to reduce the pectorals to make the shirt work, but it more or less has built-in pecs so the chest doesn’t look too flat.
Tattoo layers have been improved greatly compared to the previous body. They used to take ages to come into focus, if they ever did at all. Now they go on smoothly and are looking rather crisp. The tattoo I’ve used here is “Flawless Time” by Taox Tattoos.
In conclusion, this upgrade definitely is a notable improvement from the previous version of the TMP body, but I doubt many current users will be willing to cough up the L$ 2500 for it, unless they have a continuous love-hate relationship with this body. Many of them will have moved on to another mesh body. As for new users, they won’t be getting much from the Classic TMP body that they can’t get from the other male mesh bodies and at L$ 5000 it is the most expensive one by far. Belleza Jake is L$ 2999, Signature Gianni and Geralt both are L$ 3500, NX-Nardcotix David is a steal at L$ 1750 and that’s not even a full list of other bodies at lower prices. I guess you’ll have to really fall in love with the stylised look of the Classic TMP body to want to pay L$ 5000 for it.
I recently purchased the Niramyth Aesthetic Enzo male avatar and created a first look with it. You can read more about that in my previous blog post. Aesthetic avatars come complete with a detachable head, but they can also be combined with Catwa mesh heads. Let’s take a closer look at what this combination can look like, using the Catwa Victor head.
When you get a Catwa head, you’ll notice that among the many items in the package, there is a version of the head especially for the Aesthetic body. Because there are almost no skin creators that make appliers for both the Catwa heads and the Aesthetic body you need something to smooth out the neck seam. Luckily the Aesthetic body comes with a neck blender. It’s not perfect, but I’ve seen worse neck seam situations. This neck blender comes in a bald version, one with a dark hair base and one with a blond hair base. Using the Aesthetic Color & Alpha hud, you can tint your body and the blender to get closer to the skin tone of your head.
If you enjoy a longer hairstyle, you can go for something that covers up that gap between your head and the neck blender. Personally I’m partial to the playfully messy Dura B&G81 hair, combined with the Birth Benjamin skin on the Catwa Victor head. The beard and hair base are option that come with the Benjamin skin. The Avi Glam solstice eyes complete this rather charming look. Of course as usual I’ve created my own shape for this look. Perhaps I should start selling these, but the prospect of having to do customer service is giving me angst.
If you are a regular visitor of the various monthly male fashion events in SL, you may have noticed that there is a strong focus on items for the Signature Gianni and Belleza Jake mesh bodies. The Aesthetic body certainly is missing out on some of the cool new threads, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have any swagger. There are some high quality brands making clothing for this body. One of those brands is Legal Insanity. I have noticed that the Aesthetic size often is added afterwards, sometime after their newest items were already launched for Signature and Belleza, so of course you always (ALWAYS!) need to demo first.
I just created a Facebook account, which feels a little bit strange. On the one hand I want to extend the social media presence of my virtual persona, on the other hand I feel Facebook is for real people. One of the first conundrums is choosing a profile pictures. I change my avatar all the time and there really isn’t a look I use the most. In the end I recycled a shot I did for a collage with hunt items (in this case the tattoo was the item). To take a quote from the movie Babe: “that’ll do pig, that’ll do”. (gaawd this is so random!).
It looks like it’s no longer possible to categories a Facebook page as a “fictional character”, or maybe I just haven’t found it yet. Don’t you just hate it when help pages show you screenshots that don’t look anything like what you are seeing on your screen! Anywhooo, if you have a Facebook account with your avi, feel free to add me.
There always seems to be something left in SL I haven’t tried yet. Where bodies are concerned I’ve build up a nice collection, but I hadn’t taken a proper look at the Nyramith Aesthetic body yet. It comes with its own head by default and Birth recently started created some appliers for this head, which match the body’s standard skin seamlessly.
This body definitely is for those among you that like that very ripped look. Even if you tone it down a lot, it still will be a high level fitness model.
A strong plus points is the absence of neck seam issues when you use both the head and body at the rather inviting price of 2799 L$. A minus point is the limited choice of skins. As far as body appliers go, I have only found some fantasy skins. If you want to look human, you are stuck with the standard skin. Aesthetic has two complete avatars to chose from. Enzo, which comes with light and medium skin and Smith, which gives you a dark and ebony skin option. There are three add-on packs available, each with a slightly different head and an alternative skin. These packs cost L$ 1200 each. I’m using one of those now, named Raoh. The Birth skin I’ve applied to the Raoh head is named Maverick and costs L$ 950. That brings my look to a total of L$ 4949 without hair or eyes, which is not a bad price at all.
I need to dive into my virtual wardrobe some other time to see what I already have in a suitable size for this big boy. Yay! Something to look forward to!
Check out the Aesthetic website for more information and interesting tutorial videos.
I had an epiphany! No, wait, that’s not it… There is another Epiphany gacha event! Lovers of gachas probably are experiencing dampness or sudden swelling in their nether regions at this rather sizeable event. Personally I’m getting a bit hot and bothered over the Study Buddy Outfit by Thirst.
This round of Epiphany started on April 15th and the organisers are making it difficult to find the end date, but previous editions lasted 4 weeks, so this one will probably end on May 14th.
The Thirst set contains 14 commons & 2 rares and is fitted for Signature Gianni and Belleza Jake. The bookstrap is an exclusive you can get with points. You can collect points by turning in your unwanted doubles at the event. If you’re not a gacha fan but are really thirsty for this set, and feel the cash burn in your pocket, you can always just buy the fatpack. The shorts can be worn without the shirt and suspenders, which makes it rather inviting to head over to the Thirst main store for something like a cropped t-shirt or tank top.
Shown on Signature Gianni mesh body and head with Stray Dog “Owen” skin. This particular skin is not available at their store, but take a look at Roman if you want to try a Stray Dog skin on a the Gianni mesh head. The hair is “Haunting” by Stealthic and the mesh ears are by Mandala.