Friday, February 12, 2016

Second Life vs. Entropia

By Wesley Regenbogen

Second Life and Entropia Universe are both virtual worlds, but they are not similar to each other. In this article I will review both of these worlds and explain what the differences are and which similarities they have and what makes them special.
Second Life ( SL )
Introduction to Second Life
Second Life is a virtual world where avatars can walk around and teleport to different places in-world. You can download the client software at, but there are alternative viewers available as well.
Your first steps into Second Life
When you first sign up with Second Life you can choose from different types of default avatars and choose a name for your avatar. After your avatar has been created, you download the viewer of your choice and then login with your username and password.
You will first arrive at Learning Island, where the basics of Second Life are explained. This is the place where all new avatars arrive in the Second Life environment. After finishing the tutorial is a teleport to Social Island, though I suggest instead heading to  NCI ( New Citizens Inc ) at Kuula.
There is a real life cash economy in Second Life, where you can buy Linden Dollars ( L$ ) and you can also convert your L$ into USD or any other currency. You can also earn L$ by doing a virtual job in Second Life ( I’ll explain this later on in the article, so keep on reading, please ).
In Second Life you don’t really have game elements that are placed within the virtual world, at least not in most places. You can find games to play in Second Life.
The places you visit in Second Life are known as “sims” (short for simulations)
Account types in Second Life :
There are two account types in Second Life, Basic, or free accounts, and Premium, or accounts of which one pays a fee on a regular basis to Second Life's owner Linden Lab.
    Earning L$ in Second Life or getting a Premium account for real life money
    To earn L$ in Second Life, you can do a virtual job, like me as a virtual journalist for Second Life Newser. Or you can find another virtual job that suits you, of course, such as DJ or content creator. It all depends on your real life skills or interests. To own or buy land you need a Premium account, which costs real life money, such as buying L$ as well. What makes Second Life unique is that it has numerous shops and stores and also many clubs and live concerts in Second Life.

    Second Life Marketplace website

    The Second Life Marketplace ( ) is a website designed to buy items from when you are not in-world. You have to login with your username and password to fully access this website and buy items from the website for your avatar.

    Entropia Universe ( EU )

    Introduction to Entropia Universe

    Entropia Universe is a virtual world/game, which takes place in the future and you are being dropped as a colonist on the planet that you choose to start on. There are six different planets and space in Entropia Universe. Each planet has its own properties and creatures. When you first sign up for an Entropia account, you need to choose on which planet you want to start. I chose Planet Calypso, and I did the tutorial there in Thule, the starting place. From there, I went to Port Atlantis where my adventure started.

    Graphical details in Entropia Universe vs Second Life

    The company behind Entropia Universe, MindArk, was behind all of Entropia's creation. The graphics are amazingly detailed and when you run into bushes, the bushes move when you run through them. Very high detail graphics are everywhere. 

    With Second Life on the other hand, the graphics are not that detailed. That is because Entropia Universe uses the CryTek gaming engine, which is used in the Crysis game series and a few other games as well. In Second Life, the Havoc physics engine is used.

    Teleporting in Entropia Universe vs teleporting in Second Life

    Teleporting is also done in another fashion then in Second Life. In Second Life you have “landmarks” that you can use to teleport to another place. Or you can be invited to teleport to a friend’s place in Second Life. In Entropia Universe you need to go to a “teleporter” machine to be able to teleport to another place. Unless you find a vehicle or an helicopter that can take you there, for PED of course.
    Another difference between Second Life and Entropia Universe, is that your avatar makes a moving motion when you walk around in Entropia Universe. In Second Life your avatar seems to”float” above the surface. In Entropia Universe you can push the “R” key on your keyboard and your avatar will auto-run.

    Another difference between Second Life and Entropia Universe is that your avatar can get “killed” by creatures that attack you when you shoot them. You are automatically teleported to the nearest so-called “revival point.” It’s basically a terminal where you are teleported to. Your health bar will slowly fill back up after a long while.

    Terminals in Entropia Universe

    Speaking of terminals, here are some types of terminals you will encounter :
    • Revival Point ( see above )
    • Trade terminals ( to trade your goods for PED and also buying items from someone )
    • Society terminals ( “societies” are almost the same as “groups” in Second Life )
    • Manufacturing terminals ( these terminals are used to construct items, when you have the blueprint of it, of course and the needed items to make it )
    • Storage terminals ( these are terminals where every Entropian can store their personal items. Basically it’s your personal locker to store your personal items )
    • Auction terminals ( these terminals are like the word says to buy or sell items )
    • Repair Terminal ( to repair your items if they are damaged during an attack )
    Hunting and Mining in Entropia Universe
    You can hunt down the alien creatures that you encounter in-world in Entropia Universe and you can loot them and get items from them and sell them if you wish. After the tutorial, at least on Calypso, you should have some guns and ammo available to you.
    Mining I've read is much more difficult to do, because it involves many more skills than hunting does. I haven’t been into mining yet, so I can’t tell you more about it.
    Missions you can do and get rewards for doing them
    At some camps you encounter, you can choose to do missions, like in a normal game, if you succeed in them, then you get rewards, like guns, ammo or something else.

    Conclusion :
    Although Second Life and Entropia Universe are virtual worlds, they take on a different approach and a different experience. This is due to the different graphical engines, and also the “game play” is different. Don’t let that scare you off, though, because it’s a worthy experience in both places.
    For a Second Life resident, Entropia takes some getting used to, so keep calm and relax. But in the end you should get used to the differences and enjoy it, trust me.

    images from

    By Wesley Regenbogen

    Editor's note: In the past, Entropia has made real-life news by players buying up virtual real estate for thousands of dollars, such as the sale of the Crystal Palace Space Station, for almost a third of a million US dollars in 2010. So there is potential for a few devoted players to make some cash. However, there's no shortage of ways to make dollars in Second Life, as real estate barons such as Anshe Chung have demonstrated in the past, as well as clothing, virtual pets, and other businesses.