On 20th June 2014 Ebbe Linden went to the TPV developer meeting with some rather interesting news which is that Linden Lab are working on a next generation virtual world and that it will be in the spirit of Second Life. Apparently during the past year or so Linden Lab development team have been working already on the new project. The next generation virtual world will be closed sourced and will not be backward compatible with content from Second Life. Linden Lab believes this is a massive and exciting opportunity ahead in having a new generation virtual world. The lab are now hiring new developers to help out with the next generation virtual world.
The new next generation virtual world will be in beta sometime in 2015/2016. More details will be announced in the next few months or so. It’s still early days!
Oz Linden with the dev team will remain working on Second Life and Linden Lab have made clear that they are not giving up on Second Life after 11 years so there is no need to panic. Second Life still has many years ahead of it and the platform will continue to develop.
Here is the official statement by Linden Lab about the next generation virtual world.
Linden Lab is working on a next generation virtual world that will be in the spirit of Second Life, an open world where users have incredible power to create anything they can imagine and content creators are king. This is a significant focus for Linden Lab, and we are actively hiring to help with this ambitious effort. We believe that there is a massive opportunity ahead to carry on the spirit of Second Life while leveraging the significant technological advancements that have occurred since its creation, as well as our unparalleled experience as the provider of the most successful user-created virtual world ever.
The next generation virtual world will go far beyond what is possible with Second Life, and we don’t want to constrain our development by setting backward compatibility with Second Life as an absolute requirement from the start. That doesn’t mean you necessarily won’t be able to bring parts of your Second Life over, just that our priority in building the next generation platform is to create an incredible experience and enable stunningly high-quality creativity, rather than ensuring that everything could work seamlessly with everything created over Second Life’s 11 year history.
Does this mean we’re giving up on Second Life? Absolutely not. It is thanks to the Second Life community that our virtual world today is without question the best there is, and after 11 years we certainly have no intention of abandoning our users nor the virtual world they continually fill with their astounding creativity. Second Life has many years ahead of it, and in addition to improvements and new developments specifically for Second Life, we think that much of the work we do for the next generation project will also be beneficial for Second Life.
It’s still very early days for this new project, and as we look ahead in creating the next generation virtual world, we’ll share as much as we can.
If we had one message to share with Second Life users about this new project at this point, it would be: don’t panic, get excited! Again, Second Life isn’t going away, nor are we ceasing our work to improve it. But, we’re also working on something that we think will truly fulfill the promise of virtual worlds that few people understand as well as Second Life users.
For OpenSim this could mean that many OpenSim users may switch to the new platform or leave OpenSim altogether. There might be a slow down in new users joining OpenSim grids when the new generation virtual world arrives. It’s a possibility and don’t forget Philip Rosedale is working on High Fidelity so many may switch over to that when it comes into the beta/public phrase.
Hopefully OpenSim will continue to grow like it is today and continue to invest in new technologies when the new virtual world comes online. There is a strong opensim community for sure with a growing active user base.One thing is for sure OpenSim/Second Life will be still around in some shape or another.
More blog coverage
- SLUniverse Forums – Linden Lab working a next gen virtual world
- New World Notes – Linden Lab Confirms It’s Building New Virtual World “Far Beyond What is Possible with Second Life” (Updated with Official Statement
- Inara Pey – Lab: “We’re not giving up on Second Life
- Hypergrid Business – Is Linden Lab abandoning Second Life?
- Jo Yardley – Linden Lab working on new virtual world
- Ciaran Laval – Breaking Rumour – Linden Lab Working On Nextgen Virtual World?
- Mona Eberhardt – Linden Lab working on Second Life’s successor?
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