SOURCE: VILLAGE VOICE
…Getting Started with Sex in Second Life
… Second Life seems to be in the news all the time these days—often because of its sexy content. It’s true, cybersex of all kinds runs rampant in the game. But what a lot of new players are finding (and critics are overlooking) is that, contrary to popular perception, it’s actually be pretty hard to get started cybering in Second Life. Social customs and technical set-up alike are confusing, especially for newcomers. Things can get awkward fast. So this a beginner’s guide for how to get yourself together before you get it on in Second Life. It’s dedicated to all the sexually-anxious newbies who have ever found themselves unable to take off their clothes, or have done so successfully only to cower in shame at their Barbie doll anatomy, or have found themselves on the wrong side of some sexual act—thrusting instead of being thrust into, being groped instead of groping. These things happen to the best of us. But they don’t need to happen anymore.
How Cybersex Works in Second Life
For those who have never experienced it—or have never quite figured it out—cybersex in Second Life can take a number of different forms. The first, simplest, and probably the most rare is 100% text-based. Envision two avatars standing around, just hanging out, but all the while talking dirty in Instant Messager. More commonly, Second Life sex is a combination of the visual and the verbal. Players strip their avatars down to their cyber skin, use pose balls (those floating orbs placed in romantic areas throughout the virtual world) to animate them into various sex acts, and keep up with the whole thing in IM. There’s even a third option: clickable body parts attached to the avatars. These nipples, clits, penises, etc. can be “touched” just by clicking on them. Since the parts monitor the avatar’s “arousal,” avatars can even orgasm this way.
Some helpful hints before we move onto the technical stuff: To take off your clothes, right click your avatar and chose the “clothes” slice of the pie-like interface that will appear around your body. From there, you’ll be able to take off your items of clothing one by one, or all at once. When you want to put your clothes back on, you’ll have to go into your inventory and find them in their individual folders. Pose balls can also be activated (i.e. you can use them to make your avatar start going at it like mad) by right clicking and choosing “sit here.” In general, pink balls are for women, blue for men. Switching up the gender roles is totally fine, as long as you and your partner are prepared for a little physical confusion. “Your putting that where? But you don’t have anything to put there. . .”
The Body Parts You Need to Get Started
The earliest steps are also the easiest. When you first sign up for Second Life, you’re thrown onto an intro island, where you can begin to customize your avatar for maximum sexiness. Don’t worry if you’re mugly at first; you can (and will) alter your appearance every time you play. Beyond looking appealing, there’s also the small matter of meeting someone to cyber with. While there are plenty of adult areas in the game, if you want it to, striking up a conversation with just about anyone will usually lead to sex.
Anyways, forget all those social niceties. The real challenge in getting started cybering in Second Life is a technical one. The body you’re given when you sign up may (and I stress may) be cute, but it’s definitely not anatomically correct. Of course, you can have chat-based cybersex without worrying too much about your mannequin-esque crotch. Even if your avatar has no member or orifices, he/she can still hop on a pose ball and appear to be enjoying him/herself like normal. For the full experience though, you’ll need virtual genitalia. Maybe you don’t think it’s that important. But the first time you take off your cyber shirt in front of a hot date and his jaw drops at the site of your horrific nipple-less breasts, you’ll understand.
The bad news is, to get your avatar’s body really decked out requires shelling out some cash, or at least Linden dollars. Mainly, what you want is called a “skin.” Sometimes you can get them for free—from friends or even stores. The better ones can cost anywhere up to $2000 Lindens (about $10). Putting on a new skin will change your whole appearance, which means added parts. But it won’t just make you better endowed, it will also affect your coloring, your features, everything–so chose wisely. Anatomically correct skins can be found in almost any shopping area across Second Life.
As for those clickable body parts I mentioned, they can be purchase at the Xcite store in-world, along with a slew of other amazing accoutrements—like phalluses that really go from limp to erect. In fact, Xcite is probably the best place to shop for penises in general: which, as you might imagine, come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and species. Even if you’re not interested in fancy, “special-edition” clits—or anything else at the Xcite store—by now you should be ready to go try cybersex in Second Life yourself.
But please, before you get it on, do remember to take it off first. It looks so silly to see two fully clothes avatars humping like well-dressed bunnies.