Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Home Stumps: Location, location, location

Hopefully everyone involved with Meeroos knows not to put your Home Stump close to a Region edge. Meeroos who try to wander across SIM boundaries may experience sudden abrupt removal from the Grid. That is just how Second Life works. Best to keep your critters away from the edge by at least 150% of their range. So if you have your Meeroos set to stay within 20m of their Home Stump I would make sure it is at least 30m from any Region edges. That is the absolute minimum distance you should leave, to be safe, a distance no less than double the range [40 meters if your Meeroos range is 20 meters] between the Stump and any edge is preferable.

You can tell how close you are to the edge by looking at the coordinate numbers on top of your screen, or wherever they might be - if anywhere - on the new V2.0 codebase viewers... Zero (0), zero (0) is one corner of the SIM. So in the above example, if you were in that corner of the SIM, your Home Stump would need to go at 30,30 or greater with a 20m range. The other SIM corner is at 254, 254. If you had space in that corner of the SIM then you would need your Home Stump at less than 224,224. In no case would I put Meeroos within 15m of a SIM edge, unless I had no other choice. If that is your only option; setting movement to "Freeze" might be a good idea, to stop them crossing over the border.

It is also important to observe the edge rules for neighbors parcels. If you do not own the entire Region chances are you have other Avatars land next to you on some, or all, sides. While Meeroos crossing onto their land might not be disastrous it is certainly inconsiderate [unless you have their permission]. Depending on their land settings Meeroos wandering over might get returned to you, a big problem if you are not going to be on for a few days [they can only be in Inventory about three (3) days safely]. It's an annoyance even if you can pop them right back out. Works best for everyone if we all try to keep our Meeroos on our own land [or Group land].

X and Y coordinates sorted but there is another question I have heard a few times in Group chat: "My Meeroos legs are in the ground, what can I do?" The simple answer: Raise your Home Stump a bit. Where the Home Stump goes the Meeroos follow. Remember to hit "Relocate" on the Stump menu after you move it. Having the Meeroos maintain their level with the Stump allows you to have Meeroos at any height you want. It does limit the Meeroos to one plane of movement (X and Y, horizontal) but they do have a bit of vertical movement when they stand up to peek around. The Meeroos can not follow the ground, and do not walk up or down hills. This is one of the many cases where I think Team Meeroos made the right trade-off. Loosing ground following but using phantom pets and a set height opens up a lot of possibilities and removes tons of lag. I love the Meeroo movement. When they have a little look around it always makes me smile.

If your Meeroos are floating, or wading through quicksand, just adjust your Home Stump height and select "Relocate" from the drop-down menu. It is as simple as that. And of course: do not put your Meeroos near the SIM edge, they really dislike it.

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Complex Breeding & Community: a Postscript

When I wrote THIS post on how Meeroos in-depth breeding system is good for the community I left out something very important. I just forgot. I do not know how, as it is most likely the biggest community builder of them all. When you buy nests from the Meeroos store, in any size, you are buying a random set of genders. You have no guarantee that you will have the same number of boys and girls. Even if you were, as I wrote in my previous post: you would still sometimes need to trade to get compatible pairs for breeding. Random genders takes it to another level.
My partner had a four (4) pack that was all female. I have heard quite a few people commenting on it in Group chat. I know there have been complaints. I understand that people have come to expect that a "pair pack" contains one (1) male and one (1) female. Meeroos are doing something different, I think better, and it is a bit of a shock at first. Think of it this way: even if they were male and female they still might not be able to breed. They could be incompatible. Making the genders random just adds one final layer of uncertainty to the breeding process; in my opinion making it more engaging.

I believe the complexity of the breeding process, and the amount of care you can put into Meeroos, dissuades many mega-breeders. Anybody who thought they could just invest a lot of money, rez a lot of Meeroos and collect a profit is most likely a bit disappointed at this point. Not that I have anything against loads of Meeroos. If that is what is fun for you, go for it. I have quite a few out myself; but not to many to pet daily. It took me quite a while to figure out how to pair them up and that after trading nests for both gender and compatibility. I do not fancy the work entailed in breeding Meeroos large scale. The sixty (60) day breeding span, matching gender, compatibility and aiming for rare trait combinations simultaneously is going to be time consuming with a SIM full of Meeroos. If you have that kind of time to invest, and are enjoying it, then more power to you. If your only interest is profit there are better places in Second Life to find it, I hope.

On the other hand, I feel that Meeroos encourages the smaller niche breeder. The more time you spend interacting with your Meeroos the better the results you can expect. Regard has a part to play in unlocking new genetics and traits and the more time you are with your Meeroos the more of it you ought to have. Even just picking up the treasures they find will build your Regard up fairly quickly. This means that even very small breeders, with only a few Meeroos, can still produce exceptional offspring. With the number of variations already possible with known Meeroo traits there is a lot of room for people interested in breeding specific combinations. While a breeder with a lot of cash to invest can buy a lot of nests and match them up for breeding they gain no particular advantage in doing so while the community is there to provide the same service to the micro-breeder. Never give up just because you are not the biggest breeder on the block, you might end up being the best.

I like that the community is close and people breeding Meeroos, on any scale, are doing it because they are having fun. Nest prices seem reasonable overall on the secondary market. Who knows how things may fluctuate over time, but for now I see most people setting sane prices. There will always be someone asking a million L$ for something or other, but as-a-whole things do not appear to be getting out of hand. The community is always the best place to come to trade nests, after your friends list of course. With random genders on top of everything else trading is critical. My partner and I have now found partners for every Meeroo we have through trades. We have not had to buy a single additional nest to make a pair. All those extra Meeroos we bought were just because we really really wanted them.

So if you are disappointed that your Meeroos do not all match up, if it is compatibility or genders that have you down. Look at it as a opportunity to get involved in the Meeeroos community. Have a look at the Trade Forum [You will need to sign in] and post what you have to trade. You might end up with a Meeroo you prefer to the one you had! Don't worry about being taken advantage of, but ask sensible questions. Nobody really knows what is super rare right now, or what is worth what. It is all speculation. Different people have different preferences. Go for what you like and try to keep informed about what is rare. Group chat is the best place for that, even if you just listen in. Of course you can always IM me if you like :)

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Mating Compatibility Chart Textures!

I have ported the Meeroos Mating Compatibility Chart over to graphic form. Hopefully looks a bit better than the spreadsheet and should be easier to use. I have updated the original post with the new graphics and a download link if you would like a copy. I will also be uploading them to Second Life shortly and will post a SLURL to let you know where you can get them, for free, as soon as I do. You can find the original post and the new graphics: HERE. Enjoy!

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Meeroos: Prices and Discount Analysis

Time for a math post! I can tell you are all excited, overjoyed even. But it is better than it sounds. I have been crunching some numbers and come up with some interesting figures for purchasing Meeroos directly from the Meeroos store. Please keep in mind I am not an accountant and it is possible there are mistakes either in logic or math or both. If you bring them to my attention I will fix them. Be aware that these figures are nest-price-centric, that is: they are primarily based on figuring out the best price-per-nest and take the cost of Meeroo Food and Home Stumps as given and not discounted when part of a Meeroo Pack. That focus can skew the data a bit sometimes making it look like something is a better or worse deal than it really is. Make sure to check how much Food and how many Stumps you get with each package, it can vary drastically.

I have embedded my charts at the bottom of this post. I am going to have a go at explaining it in words a bit first, hopefully that will make more sense and provide some context for the charts. If you prefer raw data: just scroll to the bottom.

 Meeroo Packs

The Family Pack contains six (6) Meeroo Nests, two (2) Home Stumps and enough food for twenty-eight (28) days. The Pack retails for L$5,199. That is L$3,499 for the Nests if you assume no discount on Food and Home Stumps which makes each nest: L$583.17. The overall discount based on how much it would cost to buy all items in the Pack individually is: L$617 or 11% off. [Pack Value: L$5,816]

The Meeroo Medium Pack comes with four (4) Meeroo Nests, one (1) Home Stump and enough food for seven (7) days. Notice that you get a lot less food per Meeroo by dropping from the Family Pack to the Medium Pack. You will need to buy more Food after seven (7) days instead of twenty-eight (28). However since the Pack sells for L$2,799 of which L$2,324 is for Nests, the price-per-nest is only: L$581, slightly less than for the Family Pack. This is, in my opinion the best value Pack for your L$. Your mileage may vary. If you need loads of Meeroo Food in your Pack, I would go with the Family Pack. If you have enough food all-ready the Medium Pack has the lowest price-per-nest, again that is without applying any price reduction to Food or Homes despite being included in the discounted Pack. The discount for this pack, over buying each item individually is: L$420 or 13% off. [Pack Value: L$3,219] Overall a slightly better deal than the Family Pack in many cases.

Next is the Meeroo Pair Pack. It comes with two (2) Meeroo Nests, one (1) Home Stump and food for seven (7) days for your Meeroos. The Pair Pack is going for L$1,599. Of that I calculated L$1,223 was for the Nests making the Nest price: L$611.50 each. That is L$30.50 more per Nest than in the Medium Pack and the food will last you just as long although it is half the amount of food since there are half the Meeroos of a Family Pack. Discount over buying each item: L$149 or 9% off. [Pack Value: L$1,748]

Lastly the Single Meeroo Pack AKA "Me and My Meeroo" Pack which, obviously, contains one (1) Meeroo Nest as well as one (1) Home Stump and seven (7) days worth of Food. Its price is: L$999 and this is where I calculated the base price for a non-discounted Meeroo Nest. It is used throughout the charts below. I figure the price of a single Meeroo Nest to be: L$686 which is L$74.50 more per Nest than the Pair Pack and L$105 more than the Medium Pack. Again, it has half the food of the Pair Pack which will feed the single Meeroo for seven (7) days. There is no discount for buying this Pack and thus its value and cost are identical. [Pack Value L$999]

There is no guarantee that you will get an even mix of Males / Females in any pack listed above. If you need specific genders I suggest using the trade forums or purchasing Nests from the secondary market where their gender will be known prior to purchase. The trade forums are fantastic and currently people are responding very quickly. If you need to trade Meeroos for any reason I would try there first.

Meeroo Food

Food prices are very simple. You should always buy the biggest pack you can afford, unless you are planning on giving up Meeroos [Yikes! Don't do it!]. The bigger the pack the higher the discount.

The base food pack is enough food for one (1) Meeroo for one (1) week. It has no discount and is selling for: L$63 which works out to L$9 per day spent on food. The next step up, at L$225, is enough to feed one (1) Meeroo for four (4) weeks and works out to L$8.04 [11% discount] per day. The largest pack currently available is food for six (6) Meeroos for four (4) weeks and works out to L$7.14 [21% discount] a day. The largest pack costs: L$1,200.


I am embedding two (2) charts below. The first breaks down the prices and discounts, as well as cost of ownership, for all currently available Meeroo Packs and Food Packs. The second chart breaks down all of the combinations of Meeroo Packs you could buy to obtain a specific number of Meeroos. If you know how many Meeroos you want to have total it will show you the options you have to purchase that number. Make sure to keep an eye in the amount of Food you get and the Stump count. The most expensive way to buy any number of Meeroos is with Single Packs and you will end up with as many Home Stumps as you have Meeroos! I have tried to include every possible combination up to twelve (12) Meeroos, if I missed any let me know.

For the chart below: "#" is the number of Meeroos you wish to purchase. The column headers 1p through 6p stand for the Pack Nest count. So "1p" is the single Pack and "6p" is the Family Pack. "Food" indicates the number of days worth of food you get for the number of Meeroos you are buying. It is not a specific amount of food, but how long it will be before you will need to buy additional food if you use that purchasing option. I have alternated the background color to show where it changes from one quantity of Meeroos to another.

If you are interested in viewing these charts at a proper size, or on your local machine, you can view and download them! The first chart "Meeroos Price List Compare" is HERE and "Meeroo Price Breakdown by Quantity" is HERE. Enjoy! I hope you find them useful.

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Release the Fear

I am terrified of the RELEASE button on the Meeroos HUD. I know I am not the only one. My partner scarlett feels the same way, I'm not sure which of us is worse. I admit, I have had nightmares about that RELEASE button accidentally sending a wonderful little Meeroo off into the wild, possibly forever. I know in time I will get used to it,  will even have to use it. Right now though it serves no purpose; for what reason would I ask any of my most precious Second Life companions to leave? I would be heartbroken if I lost even one (1).
I know my fear is unfounded. It is very difficult to release a Meeroo by accident. Once you touch the button you then have to type "RELEASE" in open chat. It does have to be in all-capitals: "Release" and "release" will not work. I tested it during Open Beta. Where I think Meeroos are being released unintentionally is when people misunderstand the HUD and mistakenly believe that releasing Meeroos is a way to get them out of their nest. I can not imagine what it must be like, to be into these little guys as much as I am, and realize that you have lost a Meeroo as a result of your own misunderstanding. I might even cry. So the RELEASE button is a bit scary, it can do scary things, but it is not remotely likely to be triggered by mistake.

If you have had a nightmare, or two, about that infernal RELEASE button leave a comment and let me know about it. I know I am not the only crazy one out there, right... Hello? *chirp* Ha, knew my Meeroos would save me!

Problems with Second Life: Assets in Disarray

Team Meeroos have issued a warning regarding Meeroos as a result of ongoing asset server issues in Second Life. Please do not purchase Meeroos or do anything with them that uses the asset servers. That means: don't pick them up, don't take them in to Inventory and do not rez anything for now. I have been effected by this directly as I tried to buy some more Meeroos only to have the Chest vanish from my Inventory during a Teleport home! This is a serious warning, I strongly suggest you follow Team Meeroos suggestions and read their blog post on the matter HERE. There are also instructions there for how to report missing items. I assume an all-clear will be posted when it is safe to pick up Meeroos again.

Linden Labs has posted that the issues have been resolved: "[RESOLVED May 22nd 11:35 AM PDT] The asset server issue has been resolved. In-world activities can now be conducted normally." However I would wait until Team Meeroos does a Group notice or blog post before resuming normal activities.

Please be patient with the CSRs, they are dealing with a lot of problems right now and they will help everyone as quickly as they can. This is Linden Labs fault, not theirs. Team Meeroos has said on their blog that all problems should be addressed within twenty-four (24) hours: "They may not get to your immediately, but the CSR benchmark is to address every concern with 24 hours of receipt." So while it might take a bit of time, they will get your problem sorted out. Have faith :)

Saturday, 21 May 2011


As I am sure most of you know Launch is under-way. The original two (2) Regions have been full since 2pm SLT when it began. Team Meeroos have now opened up some additional locations with Meeroos vendors:

If you are having trouble getting to one of the primary stores, use one of these back-up locations. I hope everyone gets loads of Meeroos! Woot!

Complexity in Breeding and the Community

I am not going to call the Meeroos breeding system complex, not at all. The title of this post refers to the relative level of complexity in a breeding system and the effect that can have on the community. The Meeroos breeding system is just slightly more complex than others. Team Meeroos have created a breeding system with exciting possibilities by introducing the concept that two identical Meeroos in every way, except personality, might have very different breeding compatibility. Some Meeroos timing might just be off and they won't ever breed. The trade market thrives on these minor details. I specifically mention trade over sales because there is no money involved. It is, normally, like for like. When trading for personality that can be doubly so, it could be the only difference. It is people helping each-other out in a mostly non-commercial way. Nobody is trying to gain any massive advantage, everybody comes out ahead. Especially with the sixty (60) day breeding window, getting mates figured out and matched up quickly is vital.

Second Life is a pretty big place. Much bigger now than when I started and it seems more empty. I don't know if that is true, perhaps it was my early fascination with everything about SL that made it feel vibrant and full of helpful avatars. I am pretty sure it was easier to get help years ago, from other avatars, when you did not understand some fundamental aspect of the world. Sometimes even without being mocked much. Now it sometimes feels like all I do is hang around the same places, mostly home, and script or IM. When I do go out exploring I don't see many other avatars and I have no reason to speak to any that I do. When I see people asking for help they are ignored, or worse: given the wrong information. Before Meeroos Second Life was getting pretty boring and a bit bleak.

I know Group chat is borked most of the time. Just another fact of Second Life. Even so, in the Wonderful World of Meeroos InWorld chat I have once again found a source of helpful, if sometimes a bit stressed, people. The breeding system is not to hard to understand, but it does take some getting used to. People have to get that informations somewhere and they have been coming to Group chat. More will be coming when Launch hits. I have really enjoyed trying to help others in chat, being helped and seeing others do likewise. There are bound to be some issues with avatar personalities as well as Meeroo ones. That is part of being a community. The core information everybody needs is included in the Users Guide, I can attest to that, but the fine details and specific circumstances can often be resolved with a quick trip to Group chat. If nothing else it will get you the attention of a CSR. They are very attentive. And best of all once people come to Group chat, sometimes, they stay and we all have a nice talk.

Getting back to my never leaving home: Petting Meeroos. Yes, you get regard for it, they get regard and comfort, it is good for everyone involved. I am lucky in that my partner and I now both have ten (10) Meeroos. We can, if we choose, pet the other ones Meeroos and collect our one hundred (100) regard points without leaving home. The thing is I kind of want to go see other peoples Meeroos and their habitats, I would not mind petting a few while I am there. They are all cute. If I run into the owner while I am there, well we already know we have something in common. The issue I have found is, um: finding these places. I have posted here where you can get your location listed if you want people to pet your Meeroos. Mine are listed and you can come pet them if you like. I would love to come have a look at other Meeroos areas, so get me a SLURL or a LM and I will drop by, pet your Meeroos, and get it added to the list.

I feel that the petting aspect of Meeroos enriches the community and my personal Grid exploration. When I can find destinations. Other social aspects like Fellowships create groups of Meeroos fans who are all working together for the common good. I can imagine that, once we are properly under-way, things like personality-trades and wrong-gendered trades will be offered to Fellowship members first then to the greater Meeroos community. If nothing else Fellowships are a bit of fun thrown in. I would not take them too seriously, it is not a gang. Although, perhaps a secret handshake would not be out of order. Being in, and contributing to, a Fellowship can be a part of the breeding process because some things can only be unlocked by Fellowships. One more facet of Meeroo breeding that encourages community.

Between helping out new Meeroo owners in Group chat and Grid hopping avatars looking for those last four (4) Meeroos to pet I think we are all going to meet some interesting new people. So far most everybody has been incredibly nice and when they can be: helpful. The tone is well set by the Meeroos CSRs who are courteous under stress and proactive in providing assistance. Did you know, my fact of the day, from this post on the the Meeroos blog: "...[CSRs] sacrificed the ability to own Meeroos in order to provide support and care to people who do." That is correct: Meeroos CSRs can not own Meeroos! That makes me sad for them. I could not do it, even to work with Team Meeroos. If it meant giving them up I would have to say no. I'm holding on to my Meeroos thank you. Remember that next time you chat with a CSR, they gave up Meeroos to work helping you out.

In summation I am thrilled to have been in Open Beta, I could not be more pleased with my Pre-Order boxes and I am looking forward to Launch in about 20 hours. The community has been fantastic and helpful with trades. We were able to sort all of our Meeroos out so they have potential mates. Now we just have to see how the timing matches up. I predict our community is only going to get bigger and better. I hope to see you all in Group chat and on the forums, never know when I might need to trade some Meeroos.

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Pet-able Meeroos Locations

I know many of you have been looking for places to pet other peoples Meeroos and many people have been looking for a place to list their location so people can do exactly that. It is a win-win situation: the Avatar doing the petting gains one hundred (100) regard points for petting ten (10) Meeroos they do not own and each Meeroo who gets petted receives ten (10) regard points in their personal regard pool. Everybody gains something and you get to go out and explore the Grid to see Meeroos that have traits you may have never seen before.

Since I have not seen any such place to list locations yet, I will offer one here. I'll start it off by listing my own Meeroo habitat SLURL [It is a work in progress, pretty barren at the minute.], if you would like to list yours here: IM me, or email me or whatever and I will get it added. If you want to be quick you can just leave a comment and I'll get it from there [Make sure you let me know who you are!]. Everything is going so well with the little guys; lets try to get as many petted as possible! [Remember: you do need a Meeroos HUD to interact with (pet) them.] 
Pet-able Meeroos Locations:
Fos Dagger & scarlett Tamura's Meeroos: http://slurl.com/secondlife/Cotis/205/228/99/

The list of pet-able Meeroos locations has been moved HERE to make it easier to update and find. There is a link on the right hand bar under "Pages" as well.

If anybody is interested in listing their Fellowship that is looking for members that would be fine too. Just send me the name of the Fellowship and the SL name of the contact person who can add people. Keep in mind that for this to work I do have to list both, and you might end up getting a lot of requests to join [I will verify the request with the Contact person InWorld prior to listing]. If you do list here and your Fellowship hits its maximum Member count please let me know and I will temporarily un-list it until you need more members again. Once more I'll start it off myself, with my partners Fellowship:

Fellowships looking for Members:
"Midnight Meeroos" Contact: scarlett Tamura

Pre-Order Perfection

Pre-order Chests have been sent to everybody who ordered them and is currently InWorld. Tiger writes, in a WW of Meeroos Group notice: "If you are online you should have all your preorders now.  If you just got online (or reading this later) your preorder should popup within a minute or two of logging in." That was quick! I do not think perfection is too strong a word to use, I have had zero problems. Got my chests and super cool golden Home, got everything rezzed and Meeroos coaxed without a hitch. They are happily sleeping away at my feet as I write.

I understand, from a Group notice, that some people are mistakenly using the RELEASE button on the HUD thinking it would release (birth) their Meeroos from their nests. Nests are coaxed by "Touching" them and selecting the "Coax" option from the drop down menu. My heart goes out to those unfortunate individuals who accidentally released their precious pre-order Meeroos. I hope something can be done for them, but that may not be possible or advisable. It is just that I can imagine how I might feel if I had made an error like that and lost some of my Meeroos. I would be devastated and probably not be talking to myself for awhile. Um, that did not sound right; I don't really talk to myself much now, really. I am so glad to have Meeroos back, my proper forever Meeroos. Now it is time to decide on names. Think I might wait a bit and see what suits them.

Golden Meeroo Home & New Babies
Thank you, Team Meeroos, for an excellent evening so far. I intend to finish this up and get back to spending some time with my Meeroos! Might see if anybody has new Meeroos they want to show off, I want to see them all. Remember: Only three (3) days till the Official Launch, I can not wait, I am going to buy a few more for sure, how many is still uncertain ;)

Warning from the InWorld Group about the RELEASE button:
"Some of you are getting your Meeroos trunks and upon getting your nests from the chest, you are going to your STATUS tab and clicking RELEASE which releases them to the wild, not from their nest. To release from a nest, simply left click it. Again, please do NOT go to status tab and click release to coax a baby from a nest. It will leave your care in doing that."

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Time Waits for No Meeroo

Team Meeroos has published their Meeroo Users Guide, it is full of good information and I would strongly suggest you read it before you unpack your first Meeroos. You can find the Users Guide in Group notices if you missed it, or ask for a copy in Group chat. If you are really having trouble: IM me and I'll send you a notecard with it in myself. There are some important clarifications in there. It is good to now have a definitive guide to the Meeroos.

I have been taking it as inevitable that there would eventually be something about Meeroos that I would not be thrilled with. I think I may have found it. While the Users Guide is mostly good news there is one item that surprised me: Meeroos can only breed for sixty (60) days. I saw somewhere, that I can not locate now, that Meeroos would not have generations/seeds/etc... Basically no set number of breeding cycles, which I think is great. In retrospect the following seems a bit naive, but I had really gotten the impression that since: A) Meeroos live forever and B) They don't have a max limit on breeding cycles, Meeroos must be able to breed forever. Obviously, thinking about it now, it is clear that no breedable can be allowed to breed forever. It would flood the secondary marketplace and it would not take long for that breedable to be worthless as a saleable item. It is my own fault for not thinking that through previously and I am not put out by that part; of course there has to be a limit on the number of times any single Meeroo can breed. What I do not like it that it is on a timer.

I don't know how it is going to work in practice and I am cautiously optimistic. Perhaps it will not be as bad as I fear, could turn out to be nothing to worry about. I love the fact that the number of babies a Meeroo can have in their breeding phase is indeterminate. You do not know for sure how many nests they will produce. I just wish it had been implemented in a different way. I am worried that adding time pressure to breeding is going to make what is supposed to be fun more stressful, more like work. If there is a set number of times a pet can breed, even if that number is semi-random and secret even from the User, then there is no time pressure at all. You can leave your pets separated, but with food, and they will continue on without breeding quite happily. When you do want to breed them again you can just reintroduce the males and the females [Peat, you remember Becky, right...?]. With Meeroos you have sixty (60) days and then that is it: they are done breeding.

That being what it is, I cannot say that I have ever separated any other breedable pets for more than a day or two (2) for any reason. I normally, well always, breed them right through until they run out of whatever limits their breeding cycles. So there is a good chance that the Meeroos limit being time will not impact me as much as I think. My concern is that the countdown will always be at the back of my mind, and if I miss a chance to breed a pair, especially if the fault is because of SL itself, because I can't get InWorld to move them around; it is going to be made worse by the fact that the time lost is gone. If a pet with a fixed number of cycles misses the chance to breed you can separate out the two (2) who failed and they can try again next cycle with nothing being lost. That I have done a few times. With a breeding phase timer any missed time is potentially missed nests and a reduction in the total number of nests the effected Meeroos can have.

Don't get me wrong, I am not complaining, I am not even interested in it being changed at this point. After all the work Team Meeroos has put in, and the dedication to listening they have shown, I believe they will sort it out if it does turn into a problem. As it says on their blog in this post:

So if you ask, "When will the Meeroos be done?"
The answer will always be, "Not in the forseeable future."

Even now the Meeroos are a work in progress. If specific things don't work out as planned, or if people complain, I trust Malevay Studios to continue listening. After everything written above I am actually a bit excited to try it out. I think it is unlikely, but who knows: I may prefer the timer system to any other in the end. I have about sixty (60) days nine (9) hours until I will know for sure. I will get back to you on what I think about it then, if not a bit before.

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Important Information About Trunks

The delivery of pre-ordered Meeroo Family packs is almost upon us. They begin in slightly more than twenty four (24) hours. A lot of people who were not in Open Beta will be receiving their first ever Meeroos Trunk, and there are some things they should know: The single most important caution is: Never "Open" a Meeroos Trunk! They are designed to be "Touched" and then unpacked via a drop-down menu. If you "Open" a Trunk and extract its contents to your Inventory it, and the contents, will be broken!

Malevay Studios has said they will not replace Trunks broken by being "Opened." Catherine's quote from their blog is: "If you break your Chest after it is delivered by opening it incorrectly(i.e. extracting contents to your inventory via edit mode)or deleting it altogether, we will not be able to replace it or refund your money for it. This is not because we want to be difficult!" That might sound a bit draconian but if you think about it: as a company, they have nothing but your word that the Trunk was "Opened" and therefore broken, someone could have set those Items out correctly and then simply claim that the Trunk was broken. I am sure the vast majority of us would never do anything like that, but some people will. While I suppose there might be some way to match up purchases with Trunks and Meeroo counts; you can sell/buy Meeroos and people will use that to obfuscate things in an attempt to get free product. That coupled with the fact that, I assume, every Trunk sent out or purchased [of a specific type EX: Family Pack] is identical until you rez it InWorld. Prior to that you could transfer it to anyone, they could rez and open it and then hand you back the empty (read: broken) Trunk.

Perhaps I am over thinking it. I bet Team Meeroos have thought about it quite a bit. Especially in light of what I consider very customer-friendly policies and TOS. If they say they wont do it I am sure it is for a good reason. In the end preventing Meeroo fraud protects everyone who owns them except those perpetuating the scams [They will get theirs eventually, see: Karma]. So while I am sure there are going to be some very angry Avatars who do "Open" their Trunks, that has to be balanced against the damage not having that policy in-place would cause.

It seems the best course of action for everybody involved is to make sure everyone receiving Trunks knows how they work and how to correctly unpack them. Team Meeroos has made a tutorial video for just that purpose [Below]. I can only assume it will also be in the instructions notecard that will, I hope, come with the Trunks (i.e. not in the Trunk). I believe the Trunk itself chats the instruction not to "Open" it when you rez one. In my opinion there really is not much of an excuse not to know how to unpack it, but information can be overlooked. Especially in the excitement of pre-orders and getting your first forever Meeroos. If you have friends who are going to be getting Meeroos for the first time: make sure to let them know. A Family Pack is a pretty big investment, at least they were for me. I think it is better to take the risk of telling someone who already knows than not to, and potentially have that investment lost.

So, grab a cup of coffee [Video is: 3min 19sec long] and have a watch of the helpful Tutorial video produced by Team Meeroos. Make sure to point your friends and family who are expecting Meeroos there as well.

If anybody knows what the correct term for them is now that would also be helpful. I'm not sure if we should be calling them Trunks or Chests. It seems like we're moving toward Chest as the proper term, but I'm uncertain.

Monday, 16 May 2011

What is that I hear? Another new ear?

Today I found a picture that shows a set of Meeroo ears of a type I have never seen before. I think both ears below are shaped the same* and the photos are just from slightly different angles. I could be wrong about that; they could be two different ear types. These close-ups are taken from a photo posted to the album of the Official WW of Meeroos Facebook page.

They are not my favorite right now, but I would need to see them InWorld to be sure, they are an awesome concept though: a raggedy ear! The ear shape I currently prefer is the classic style. Perhaps it is because that is the first ear I ever saw on a Meeroo and it just seems "right." I am sure there are going to be a lot more little surprises, like these ears, once we get our "Foreveroos." I am giddy with anticipation. If anybody knows what the ear shape, or shapes, above are called and/or has more pictures of them: please let me know. Your contact options are legion:

Email: fosdagger@gmail.com
Twitter: @fosdagger
InWorld: Fos Dagger
Or comment on this post below

*Upon further review I am pretty sure there are two (2) new ears there. They do not look like the same shape and one is definitely longer than the other, more-so than I think can be explained by any difference in perspective. :)

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Thoughts as Open Beta Ends

As I write this it is less than 6 hours until the end of Open Beta. So far almost every blog post I have written has been about Open Beta and that is about to end. I am tempted to say that it is getting serious now, but I hope not too serious. Meeroos should be fun and I am excited about mine. I am not interested in being a mega-breeder or "winning" Meeroos. I just enjoy them. I have loved being a part of Open beta and would like to thank Breedables Inc. for writing the post that led my partner to the Meeroos site in time for us to join it.

Open Beta has been an eye-opening experience for me. This is the first time I have been involved in testing other peoples products in Second Life prior to release. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I was surprised at some of the InWrold Group chat. Everyone has their own ideas about how things ought to be done, and team Meeroos needs all that input to improve their product. So I don't understand why there would be any problems. The CSRs have done an amazing job keeping Group chat defused and amicable. I have learned a lot from participating in it and have met some great people already. I can't imagine what Group chat will be like after the Official Launch, I hope those of us who participated in Open Beta will work together to keep it positive.

 I have enjoyed Open Beta enough that I am a bit sad it is over. It has been a bit of an elitist thrill to invite friends over to have a look at the Meeroos, friends not in Open Beta, and then have them go pre-order. I do not want to come across as gloating, I wish everybody could have been involved in Open Beta. I am pleased that my partner and I got the chance to be a part of it, we could easily not have been. I don't know what surprise Team Meeroos has planned for beta testers, but if it is an item of any sort: I will treasure it. Not because it is rare or worth anything, I hope they are no-trans if they are an object to render them un-sell-able. Instead I will keep it as a reminder of my time, of our time, in Open Beta. I am being overly sentimental I know. It is just the end of product testing. Soon the "for real" Meeroos will be upon us, literally. I have a good feeling about Meeroos, and about Malevay Studios. They do appear to have a plan in place. Who knows? I might not even like the plan. But they have a plan and I am encouraged by that. I like a company that has a course of action in place but still listens. If you have witnessed the changes to the way Meeroos work [Petting Distance, Chat Spam, HUD Memory Issues, etc...] you can tell they are paying attention.

An anecdote for you, to show how much attention they pay: In one of my blog posts I posted a picture of a deformed Meeroo. Nothing serious, although it was hilarious, the Meeroo fixed itself shortly after the photo was taken and had no further problems. I even marked the photo as being something temporary. It was not two days later that I got an IM from a Meeroos CSR telling me they had seen the photo and wondered if the Meeroo in it was ok. I don't know if the initiative to contact me came from the CSR or elsewhere in the company, but it shows somebody - probably a few somebodies - are paying a lot of attention.

I am a bit sad Open beta is over. I am a bit sad my Meeroos habitat is going to be empty until Wednesday. I am excited about Wednesday. I must not pre-order any more Meeroos, oh wait, can't afford to; problem solved. Soon we'll be setting up those Fellowships for real, building Regard for real, breeding Meeroos for real. Once again my Second life is filled with excitement and discovery. For Team Meeroos I have both high expectations and high hopes. I have already had countless hours of enjoyment from Meeroos and they are not even available yet.

If you want to order any more pre-order packs make sure you head over to the Oracle at Twas before Midnight tonight. Once the clock strikes twelve they are finished and you'll have to wait until the 21st, at 2pm SLT, to purchase any more.

Meeroo Events and Information Calendar

Team Meeroos publishing the dates for the end of Open Beta, delivery of Pre-Orders and Official Launch inspired me to set up a public Google calendar with important Meeroos dates marked. I will continue to update the calendar indefinitely, so add it to your calendars or just check this post from time-to-time, the calendar below will update any time you visit. The calendar is also shown in the sidebar on the right of the posts.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

End of Open Beta Announced!

Team Meeroos has announced the end of Open Beta, the dates for Pre-Order delivery and the Official Launch! Dates are as follows:

End of Open Beta: Midnight SLT, Saturday - May 14th [Today!]
End of Pre-Orders: Midnight SLT, Saturday - May 14th
Pre-Order Deliveries: 2pm SLT, Wednesday - May 18th
Official Launch: 2pm SLT, Saturday - May 21st

There are two (2) locations that will be available to purchase Meeroos at after the Official Launch on the 21st:

Twas: http://slurl.com/secondlife/Twas/93/71/131
Haute Couture: http://slurl.com/secondlife/Haute%20Couture/139/158/22

Note on Pre-Orders: It looks like they are going to use the same delivery system tested during Open Beta and you will need to log-on after 2pm on the 18th to be offered your pre-order Trunk. That means you will not get an offline notice about your Trunk being sent, it will not be delivered until you are online. Of course: make sure you are not in busy mode when it is offered!

I am really going to miss the Beta ones I have but I knew it would end soon and I am now uncontrollably excited about getting my "for real" Meeroos! This even makes the Blogger outage fiasco seem not so bad. Thanks again Team Meeroos.

So; if you are in Open Beta and have beta Meeroos out, they are going to sneak off to the wild about Midnight tonight. Take your pictures and say goodbye while you can. It is going to be pretty empty in those Meeroo areas for the next few days.

Now, must get a nap, then get InWorld and say goodbye to my Meeroos who are about to set out across the Grid in search of new adventures. I'll pack them a lunch...

From the most recent Meeroos blog post, by Catherine: "Release is the beginning of a magnificent, long term reveal of stories, lore and mystery that await your discovery. We're not making things up as we go along: The Meeroos have undergone a highly sophisticated story development well before we entered technical development. The Meeroos culture will impact how you play the game, and it will even take you to places you never imagined in the style of play. With what has been revealed in Beta, please know, you've not even scratched the surface."

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Don't Pick Up Your Meeroos!

A warning from the WW of Meeroos InWorld Group:

[Sent aprox: 6:55am PDT]
Group Notice From: The Wonderful World Of Meeroos, Mehgan Southmoor
"Right now SL is having major issues causing many meeroos to get lost, please do not pick up any meeroos until the all clear is given"

I figure this is related to the issues Linden Labs is having with the asset servers. I suggest you follow the advice above and refrain from picking up Meeroos or taking them into Inventory. I would also suggest not rezzing any you may have in Inventory and take a miss on birthing nests for now. These problems could, in theory, impact them as well.

Note: The Grid Status post from LL claims the problem is resolved, but I intend to wait for the all clear from Team Meeroos before I resume any Meeroo related activities that involve the asset servers. They are obviously in a better position to know when things are going wrong and let us know about it than the Lab is.

I will keep an eye out for the "all clear" and will update this post when I see it!

UPDATE: All-clear has been given, feel free to resume your normal Meeroos activities.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Quick note on progress...

Looking over Tigers latest blog post there is one important item in-particular I am excited about, Tiger writes: "Still working on a V0.78 to go out sometime later this week with a few more improvements that people have been asking for." So there will be another update with even more of our ideas incorporated! I would love to know what suggestions he is going to implement.

The fact Tiger is still working to make sure the Meeroos are stable, even though they work pretty well right now, is encouraging. It is good to know there will be another cycle of upgrades and testing before they go live. I am glad to hear that the migration to new web servers went well. It sounds like Tiger feels there is enough processing power to handle the Official Release without any strain. Figuring out what kind of servers you need is one of the many things Open Beta trials are for. Team Meeroos needed better servers, Team Meeroos got better servers: sorted. Another job well done! My only slight worry is that the popularity of Meeroos, after the Official Release, has been under estimated; I think a LOT of people are going to want them. On-the-other-hand if Tiger says they have "...more CPU than I know what to do with atm..." I trust him.

HUD note: You should have a version 0.92 Meeroos HUD now, if you don't: make sure to pop your old one on next time you are InWorld to be offered the new one, or grab the new version from Group notices. No cosmetic changes but v0.92 fixes a memory issue in v0.91 that could cause freezing of the HUD. [I have never had any version of the HUD freeze]

In closing, I see the end of Open Beta looming in the distance, and none to far off. At the end of his dev blog post Tiger says "If all goes well this will be the final update before launch." Once v0.78 comes out we will be staring the end of Open Beta square in the face. Unless something goes very wrong it will be time to say goodbye to our wonderful Beta Meeroos and begin the lonely days, between the end of Open Beta and the start of Pre-Order deliveries, with no Meeroos scampering about underfoot. Πάντα ῥεῖ [Panta Rhei].

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Meeroo Mating Compatibility Chart

** New graphics added at the bottom of this post: May 26th, 2011 **

I can not take credit for figuring out which Meeroo personality types are compatible with each other. I got it off a very helpful InWorld texture created by: Krupta Inglewood [Let me know if I have that wrong]. All I have done is display the data in chart form. Hope you find it useful. The green "X" indicates they are compatible. If you would like a copy, the PDF version is available HERE.

I have ported the Meeroos mating compatibility chart over to graphic form for use on your home computer and in Second Life. Feel free to use them, modify them and re-distribute them. Just don't sell them. You can download the entire set HERE. The .zip file contains the texture in sizes: 128, 256, 512 and 1024. All sizes come with and without a border [The "b" after the size indicates a border; so 128b has a border and 128 does not] Below is a sample at 512 with a border. I hope these look a little better than the spreadsheet above. I suggest using the smallest resolution texture you can InWorld [128 or 256], but I prefer the 1024 version for viewing on my PC.

I will be uploading these to Second Life and will make them available there for free as well, I will post an SLURL here when they are ready. Saves everybody paying to upload the textures.

As promised, the InWorld SLURL for your free Second Life copies of the textures: HERE.

Musings and a Meeroo Finder Update

Nobody knows how much longer Open Beta will continue for, but I doubt it will be much longer. I am excited about the beginning of real, not planning on running off, Meeroos that I get to keep. Open Beta has been fun, it still is fun; it is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to help out finding some early bugs as well as get some hands-on experience with our Meeroos pre-release. It has been reassuring to know that it does not really matter, in the long run, if one of our Meeroos encounters an error, or runs off. Knowing it was all temporary. Soon it will be for real. While I don't want to say goodbye to the ones I have now; I know they have to go, to make way for the next generation. I think I am prepared this time, even though I named them again. I know they are transient Meeroos, just visiting for a short while before they will scurry off to visit another corner of the Grid. I'll be keeping an eye on the Official Meeroos blog for any announcements about the end of pre-orders and/or the end of Open Beta. I feel like I am waiting for Christmas and Halloween twisted together. I think someone may have done a movie about that...

I have done a little work on my "Where is my Meeroo?" Meeroo Finder system. I realized that once it is tracking more than six (6) Meeroos the list will have to be sorted alphabetically for you to quickly locate a particular Meeroo. It can also email a list of your Meeroos Names and ID#s via an interface method you may be familiar with from the HPC Teleporter pads [If you are an Admin/Owner] and the Meeroos [when you want them to chat their stats]: the "long-touch". You hold your mouse pointer over the Object, then left click on the Object and hold down the mouse button. In this case for about three (3) or four (4) seconds. You will get some Owner only text asking you to provide an email address on a random channel. You can send the report to any email you like. Once you provide an email address [Leave it as just a space to cancel] it will compile the report and send it. Where Is My Meeroo? system is provided: Prims [Mod/Copy/Trans] and: Scripts [NoMod/Copy/Trans] and you can get a copy for free HERE on the marketplace. I will post system updates on this blog for now, or you can just check the marketplace. As of this post the current version is 0.3.1beta.

In closing I would like to post a few pictures I have taken and a few I have been sent. Thank you again to Judi Newall for sending in some fantastic Meeroo pix! Judi's pictures are directly below and mine are underneath.

Judi's Photos:

Fos's Photos:

Thursday, 5 May 2011

The Ethos of a Company

A company can posses many of the traits you would normally associate with an individual. It is the very concept incorporation is based on. It makes the company liable, as a whole, for its actions while shielding the individuals who make up the company from undue hardship. It is this concept that allows a company to buy land, or machines or to bind itself into contracts. This is all perfectly natural to us because we feel businesses do have a character beyond that of the employees who comprise them.

That character can be shown in many ways. Via the conduct of the employees in general, the quality of the product, quality of customer service etc... The most vital interaction is, I believe, the one-to-one service you get when you have a problem. The most important interaction most people with have with any corporation is the company Customer Service Representatives [CSRs]. They set the tone. If you feel fobbed off by customer support, you feel fobbed off by the whole company. Many people will never have any interaction with a company other than through CSRs. This is especially true in virtual worlds where purchasing is automated and the Owner is often not online if you have a question. A good company makes sure it has the best CSRs it can in place.

Accepting responsibility when something goes wrong goes a long way toward building trust. While nobody is interested in a product that fails constantly, we all accept that errors occur and mistakes happen. Look at the condemnation Sony brought upon itself for not telling its customers their PS3 online accounts had been hacked when it happened. Sony now says they did not think, at the time, data had been stolen. Good excuse? Even knowing what to say when things do go wrong means a company understands its target demographic. Not knowing the customer base can make even an honest apology sound hollow.

Corporations show their character with a good product. You can only get a good product after a lot of hard work. I find that people who put a lot of effort into what they do also support it. They want to see it thrive. It is hard to be invested in a shoddy product. A good product is well tested and it builds confidence in a company, we know everything has been checked. You can tell when a person is proud to stand behind the product they sell, they believe in it.

Bit of a lecture there, but I say all that to bring us to some recent events that Team Meeroos had to deal with, my opinion on how they handled them and what that says about the company. The first event, if you will, was Open Beta itself. Thousands of us joined the Group and optimistically waited for our first Meeroos. Even before they arrived there were questions about this and misunderstandings about that. Plenty of people tried to help in Group chat but the people who really stood out, spent 12+ hours a day online, were and are the Meeroos CSRs. At times when I was getting cross in Group chat they were calmly answering questions. Even if all they could do was direct people to the blog, they were there. I can't think of many times I have logged in and there was not a CSR available in Group chat. What does that say about the dedication of Team Meeroos?

They also made a mistake. Nothing major, just a flag in the database that released all the Open Beta Meeroos on the Grid a bit early. Could happen to any company with software in Beta and would, in most cases, not be any problem at all. If you're testing a fabricated database and you loose your temporary entries you are not normally too fussed. It might be a slight inconvenience and there might be an apology. Malevay Studios went much further than that. First off they acknowledged it as a mistake on the blog, no double talk, nothing about "looking into the issue" or prevarication of any kind. To quote the blog: "I'll be completely honest with you, this was our mistake." More than that: they understood their customers, or testers in this case. They knew how close we all were to the Meeroos we had. We knew they were Beta, we knew they were going to go. But when it happened without warning Malevay Studios realized what it meant to us, and they said so. On their blog they write "Although our intention was to have them vanish to the wild, we wanted to provide you adequate time to say your good-byes and prepare for the inevitable." For me those are the words of a company, a group of people, who know their customers. People who, if they did not work there, would be Meeroos customers.

What makes a quality product? People willing to put in the hours to make it quality mostly. What other company can boast the update turn-around time of Team Meeroos? The first phase of Open Beta was less than two weeks long and yet there are already updated items. Issues have been fixed, and complaints on the Forums have been addressed. Server side and InWorld both. Malevay Studios does not spend time talking about "agile development" they are agile! Imagine the internal testing: Before anything gets to Open Beta somebody has to rez a few, test them, test everything. If there are problems: send it back to the dev (Tiger, may you be preserved and kept safe while you work) then repeat. That is all before any of us get to have a go. As it should be.

What does this all mean? I have met some awesome people who work for Malevay Studios and I have seen an amazing product. I have been nothing but impressed with their customer [tester] service. I have faith that they will inspire the community and energize the company. Who knows what Team Meeroos has up their sleeves? I don't know but I want to find out.

Some New Genetics

This new set of Open Beta Meeroos contains some traits, or if you prefer: genetics, that I have not seen before. These are some pictures I have taken of new traits I have found. I know I am missing some. If you have pictures you would like to contribute, please IM me. I have not taken pictures of all the eyes or coats because, well there are loads. I am just focusing on the non eye/coat variations. Hope you enjoy the pictures:

Canine Head [Canine foreground, normal in the background]

 Neck Ruffle, or whatever it's called

Short Tail

Short Upright Ear

Deformed (temporary)
[This Meeroo fixed himself without any help, I think he was just confused]

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Trunk Deliveries are on!

The delivery of Open Beta trunks has resumed! I was, unfortunately, asleep when the go ahead was given so I missed out. I have since received my trunk and birthed my Meeroos, all 6, without any problems what-so-ever. It went very well according to the Meeroos blog with over 2,500 trunks sent out. That is no easy task and it is a big step towards the official release of Meeroos. I'd like to take a second to say thank you to everyone in Open Beta, and that is everyone no matter what opinions they hold. I want to thank you not because you are helping Malevay Studios, although that is great, but because in assisting them you are helping create a better product for us all. And by us all, I mean me. So thank you, the official release is going to be much smoother than it could possibly have been without our help. Of course I have to say thank you to Team Meeroos for all their coding and CSR work over the past few weeks, and for creating the Meeroos in the first place; I would be remiss if I left them out as they have done a fantastic job.

One note: it looks like most of the problems people are having now with their Meeroos are because they still have items from the Monday release. The Tuesday release trunk contains different versions of the Home Stump and Meeroos Nests, if you still have old Monday release items it is recommended you delete them and use only items from the Tuesday release as per this quote from the Meeroos blog: "We're only supporting content delivered this evening. We can't replace broken nests from last night, or stumps, or trunks. This was a complete do over, and the content from this release was much more reliable. The old content from last night that isn't working should be deleted. Please don't contact a CSR regarding content from last night; that includes nests, trunks and stumps. We must focus solely on content from tonight's beta release." I am not sure if there is a version number change between the two, my new stump appears to be v0.77. If you do have issues with the new content it looks like the correct way to report it is still directly to a CSR, in notecard form, with as much detail as possible.

There are some very cool new genetics, or at least traits I had not heard of before, in this new bunch. I am going to post a few quick pictures now and will try to follow up with another blog post tonight when I have photographed some more of them. If you have pictures, and don't mind me using them here, send them to me at: fosdagger@gmail.com. Please include your SL name and if you would like them attributed to you or not.

Here you go. These are all Meeroos I just got from the Open Beta Tuesday release [Captions refer to the photos above them]:

Near: Canine Head, Far: Normal Head

Near: Short Upright Ears, Far: Normal Ears

Short Upright Ears

Beta coat with facial tattoo (watermark) visible

Anybody know what is up with that neck ruffle thing on the one with the facial tattoo? Seen it on a few Meeroos but I don't see a listing for it on the HUD. Not sure what it is about. If anybody has any ideas drop me an email or an IM InWorld. I would love to know!

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Trunk Deliveries Paused

Trunk deliveries have begun and, once more, been paused. Looks like there was a problem with the Meeroos server's firewall thinking it was under a DDOS attack from, well: the Meeroos themselves. This caused some issues that Tiger is hard at work fixing or has fixed. The CSRs InWorld do not have a firm time for when deliveries will resume, just "sometime this evening". They are waiting for enough people to be online and ready so that they can send out another large batch of trunks at once. This helps them test their servers.

Also it would appear that error reporting has changed somewhat. I believe we were originally told to report all Open Beta error on the Forums, but recently the CSRs have been putting the following in Group chat: "We are aware of the problems that you are all having right now we're very sorry, if you could please send a Note Card with your name and give as much detail as possible (ID#s and or names of any missing ), add a LM so if we need to fix babies and you arent online we can get there and if you have Ban lines or any security please add the CSRs to the allow list...Deliveries have been stopped for right now please read http://www.worldofmeeroos.com/node/1152" So it looks like, for now, you are supposed to send a notecard to a CSR if you have problems. Especially with disappearing ones or broken Meeroos. Please do your best to comply with what Team Meeroos asks in terms of reporting issues. If we get the reports to them in the way they prefer then they can get to them more quickly and process them faster. That means less time in Open Beta and more time with our real Meeroos! [And more problems / bugs fixed prior to release!]

I will update this blog again as soon as I find out trunk deliveries have re-commenced. Very much looking forward to it! You will have to have your new v0.90 HUD on to receive the trunk, so make sure you get one from the Group Notices and have it on before tonight!

Pre-Orders are still open

I noticed that the Meeroos blog still has posted on the front page that the end of pre-orders will be announced in advance. Now I thought this had happened already, with the final date being April 22nd. Since the blurb on the blog has not changed, I decided to go InWorld and have a look. I was surprised at what I found.

That is correct, the pre-order trunk is still there next to the Oracle and is still functioning. At least I hope it is as I pre-ordered another Family Pack of Meeroos myself while I was there, in the name of research of course. I did get my receipt number fine and it looks like it went through in good order.

If you don't yet have Meeroos on pre-order, or if you want to add more to your initial collection, head over to Twas and take this second chance to pick them up. Keep in mind that pre-orders have nothing to do with Open Beta. You do NOT have to be in Open Beta to pre-order. Anybody can pre-order and everybody should. You get your Meeroos three days before the official release! They are Cute!

Good luck to those of you who will be awake for the 8:00pm SLT Open Beta Final Phase trunk deliveries tonight. Alas, I myself, am off to bed. Goodnight everyone. Tomorrow should be filled with Meeroos again!

Monday, 2 May 2011

Trunk delivery informational update!

Brand new blog post from Team Meeroos with specific times for Open Beta trunk delivery has been posted. The times below are for tonight, Monday May 2nd, 2011. A time-line: 

7:00pm SLT: Last Phase of Open Beta begins
8:00pm SLT: Attach your Meeroos HUD & Accept any HUD updates [Wear the updated HUD]
8:20pm SLT: Delivery of trunks [chests?] begins!

We have been asked to place and birth all the nests as quickly as possible once received. However for those of us outside the US this may prove difficult. While I would love to stay up until 4am to participate, I fear my bedtime falls much earlier when the kids have school the next day. And a nasty habit of waking up at 6am... But I will get my Meeroos placed and birthed at the earliest opportunity, I promise! The timing is intended to take advantage of Second Life's peak concurrency, when the highest number of people are logged on, which makes sense. Unfortunate for some of us, but best for the Meeroos overall.

On the Meeroos blog Catherine has written, once the deliveries arrive: "Begin unpacking your Chest as quickly as possible! (Remember, do not open the contents and extract to inventory, you'll break it!) Simply click on the Chest and unpack it from the dropdown menu that appears." So there you go :)

Some additional information: The petting range for Meeroos has been increased, which we knew, the new range has been confirmed as 3 meters. I don't know what it was before the update [1 meter?] but that feels more reasonable. There are a few projects Malevay Studios have in progress as well, they are:

>> A Mute button for HUD sounds.
>> A Redesign of the way you engage the Oracle.
>> Alternative sized HUDS for multiple UI Sizes.
>> Tiny Animations
>> Hovertext toggle on/off button on Meeroos

Looking forward to seeing the multiple sized HUDs and will be great to toggle the float text. Makes identifying a specific Meeroo in a crowd, um... flock, no, herd? Anybody know what a group of Meeroos is called? Going to need to look into that. If anybody knows... IM me, or comment.

Update: the following was just sent out as a Group notice InWorld:
We know for our European times, the release is unfriendly! Our intention is to release at peak time SLT (Or american west coast) and have it roll across the world so the  server experiences multiple  stress spikes. Each of you, no matter your timeszone, is valuable to this ongoing release! Thank you so much for understanding.

No Trunks yet...

No reports of Open Beta trunks being delivered yet. I am monitoring the situation by logging in frequently and, when InWorld, detaching and then re-attaching my Meeroos HUD every so often. I will let you know here as soon as I can confirm that the deliveries have begun.

I expect there will be a Group announcement as well, but those can be somewhat unreliable for me. Often: I just don't get them. If you have gotten your new trunk, or when you do: IM me InWorld and let me know, if you like. Again: as soon as I hear anything I will update this blog.

Let us hope it is not much longer. I am going into some serious Meeroo withdrawal! Go Meeroos!!

Sunday, 1 May 2011

Size Does Matter...

All my Meeroos running off has given me some extra time to ponder and to write. So here are some things that I've been thinking about for awhile now: Different sizes in breedables. In my opinion having variable sizes is almost a requirement for any new breedable hoping to compete in the market. Meeroos have it, and they have the best implementation I have seen. I cannot confirm this, but it looks very much to me like the giant Meeroos are, not only bigger but, using different shaped sculpties than their smaller counterparts. It looks like the giant Meeroos are a bit rounded and their tails seems to poof out just a bit more. The smaller ones seem more svelte with narrower bodies. If anybody from Team Meeroos would like to confirm or deny that, feel free :)

Sculpty shape notwithstanding, the size differences alone add huge variety to any intermingled group of Meeroos. The giants tower over the teacups who, almost, still look like newborns. The mediums and the averages peer about, leaning to one side to peek around a giant brother. It is all very "real", or I think the preferred term is "immersive", in any case Meeroos do it very well. Given then inherent difficulties of working in an environment like Second Life.

They recently found that out when Linden Labs released a version [LeTigre] of its server software to some Regions that caused scripted Objects to disappear when rezzed or dropped. As you can imagine; this has an impact on Meeroos; which are scripted Objects. Scripted Objects you are normally supposed to hold and drop! The issue came from, ironically, a project to improve the scripting mechanics behind the scenes [This was Kelly's "Mono2 Upgrade" project. We had to remove it because of an issue where scripted objects would disappear on rez. -From the SL Wiki].

To the credit of Team Meeroos they had an InWorld Group announcement out as soon as possible to let people know about the problem. Which is more than Linden Labs did, with no InWorld announcement at all. The Lab did however address the problem within an hour and a half and began reverting LeTigre Regions to their previous versions. So well done all around in the end. But I digress...

Working in the unstable, hilarious [head in your bum pose anyone?], sometimes frightening world that is Second Life the creators of the Meeroos have made something special. From the size differences to the movement of the eyes and of the creature itself. It is like they listened in on the conversations I have had with my partner and with friends. As if they heard every complaint or wish and found a way to incorporate it. I am sure there will be problems, there will be teething pains. There are going to be things I don't like, maybe even things I hate. But I have a feeling I'll stick with Meeroos for a while. Even if it is only a humble food bowl that empties as it is eaten, every detail has been looked after. I hope they keep up the good work, I have faith. Looking forward to Monday... come on Monday!