Newbie Notes: Something for nothing
Well that’s the whole ethos of the Freebiesphere, I know, but there are many great ways of getting something for nothing in SL. Two of my favourites are Lucky Chairs (and, by extension, Lucky Boards) and Midnight Mania/Madness boards. For those new to SL, the workings of these things may be a bit puzzling (see my previous Q&A post where someone arrived at my blog on a search engine query ‘how to sit down and win in Second Life’) so here’s a quick tutorial about how these prize items work.
Hop behind the cut!
These are typical lucky chairs:
They may vary in size and shape, but all of them will have above them a random letter (or number, or question mark) and usually a ‘minutes remaining’ reminder. Lucky chairs are loaded with one or more prizes (the current prize you can win is usually displayed above the chair) and in order to win your first name must begin with the letter (or number) being shown. So, for example, if Diane Avatar was to sit on the chair pictured above-right, she would win the prize, but if Cecilia Avatar sat down, she would not. Diane’s name begins with ‘D’ and Cecilia’s name does not.
NOTE: This post was originally written when new Second Life residents had two names. At the moment you just sign up with one name. It’s this name (the one that you log in with) that has to match the chair letter, not your display name! If you log in as xxSusiexx but you’ve changed your display name to Susan Smith, you’ll only win the prize if the chair is on ‘x’ and not ‘s’.
In order to sit on a lucky chair and win, just right-click anywhere on the chair, and select ‘sit’ from the pie menu that pops up. Your avatar will sit down, you will see some green text at the bottom of your screen, then you’ll hear the familiar fanfare and see the lucky particles bouncing everywhere, and your prize will be given to you (look for the blue ‘flag’ that drops down at the top right of your viewer, and click ‘accept’). The chair will unseat you after a few moments, and it will then switch to a new letter. (A little bit of chair etiquette: move away from the chair a bit after you’ve won, so you don’t end up blocking it for everyone else!)
If the chair is displaying a ‘?’ then it’s a wildcard round, and anyone can sit and win, no matter what letter their name begins with.
Sometimes a chair will require that you are a member of the store’s update group before it will let you claim the prize. Sometimes it isn’t even a chair! For example, at Silent Sparrow you must sit on a lucky bird.
Lucky boards operate on the exact same principle as lucky chairs: if your first name (or first letter of the name you log in with) begins with the letter or number being shown, you can win (or, if it’s a wildcard round with a ‘?’ then anyone can win). With a lucky board you don’t sit down; you simply left-click the board and the prize is given to you.
Here, you have a choice. A lucky chair and lots of lucky boards!
Midnight Mania/Midnight Madness
Midnight Mania (sometimes Midnight Madness, and often shortened to ‘MM’) is the newbie on the giveaway block, as it were. Store owners load the MM board with a prize, set a target number of clicks, and if that many people click the board before midnight PST, everyone who clicked gets sent the prize. If not enough clicks are registered, everyone who did click is sent an instant message by the MM board telling them they did not win this time, but to come back and try again if they wish to.
The target on this board is 100 clicks. Only one click per individual avatar is registered (you can’t click twice!) and so far 42 avatars have clicked:
To register for a MM session, get close to the board (within 20m, so you can see the green text) and left-click it. You should see the left-hand number increase by one, and some green text will appear on your screen, saying something like: “[Your Name] is now registered for Midnight Mania”. All you have to do then is sit back and hope the board meets its target number, so you win the prize!