ManiStyle – Fall Train Tripping

Fall is when I get this yearning for a road trip. I started to find some new roads to explore in my car. I looked for new roads on the Second […]

Fall is when I get this yearning for a road trip. I started to find some new roads to explore in my car. I looked for new roads on the Second Life® Wiki under Transport Network.  After wandering along several links, I came across rail roads. “Ah!,” I said. “There are trains in SL!.”

Riding a ONSR train through the Snowlands

Trains evoke magic for me. I’ve ridden real life trains in the United States and England and each trip was unique and fascinating. Trains give you such an intimate view of the world. It is so very different from a car on a 4 lane highway. The trees are closer, the vistas bigger and one can walk to the next car for tea and a snack.

Begin your exploration of railroads in SL on the original continent, Sansara, with a trip on the Great SL Railroad (Links for all RRs discussed are below). It has automated cars that you can hop on at any station. It ends at the ocean station, Purple (136,204,25), and you can take a ferry across to Heterocera Atoll and connect with the Second Life Railroad (SLRR).

Free train from the Virtual Railway Consortium

SLRR stretches across 80 sims and there seem to be no automated trains; here you run your own train. There are little, single rider cabs that run on the tracks. They seem to rezz randomly and are called SLGI Vehicles and YavaScript Pods. You hop on as they pass by. Sorta fun.

I got a freebee train from the Virtual Railway Consortium and set out. Later, I bought a Rail Handcar from Bibian’s Trains. There are rezz zones  every so often where you can rezz your train. For example there is one at Obscure (221, 9, 78). The station at Calleta (117, 8, 30) is quite detailed and interesting. A nice, small industrial city.

Rezzing a rail handcar on the SLRR tracks

Making a functional railroad system is a challenging scripting task. The Virtual Railway Consortium members and other developers began working in 2005 and created a set of standards and scripts that make trains move on tracks. The tracks of the SLRR are public and anyone can use them. Also, many sims have private rail systems.

Deepy takes the controls at Bibian’s Trains

I was checking out train stores in-world and came across the demo sim of Brit Balogh and her partner Neytiri Breil. They are a team who design trains and train stations and the communities that those trains pass through. They have a version of the Orient Express that is lush and wonderful.

I asked Balogh how they got involved in building trains. She told this story, “OK….. everything has begun because I was searching for flowers. To be more exact, tulips. Searching for tulips… I found tuliptree. I didn’t find flowers there.” She found trains, “and I said to my SL friend… well it would be nice to have something moving on our sim.” She got some free trains and decided there were features she wanted that would have to be created. So, she found some scripters and builders and created an advanced control system for trains.

Balogh and Breil sell trains, created by themselves or sourced from a other builders, at the Marketplace and demo them at their sim.

Rail Systems and Stations

Some trains you can buy

  • Steam locomotive GWR 0 4 2 tank DRIVABLE by Sweetbay Designs. Buy at the Marketplace or see at the store, SouthernTier New York (158, 187, 25). There are sweet streetcars outside of this store. And over the bridge to the left is an Erie RR train station for tracks that run through several New York sims. All worth a look.
  • Rail Handcar SLRR by Bibian’s Trains (Neytiri Breil & Brit Balogh). Buy at the Marketplace or see at the demo sim, Love Beach (154, 105, 24). This is the most fantastic sim displaying trains in several stunning settings. The roundhouse at the top of the page is on this sim.

Written and Photographed by Deepthinker Oh

On the Orient Express at Bibian’s Trains: Deepy’s gown is from AZUL and her jewelery is from Terra d’OmbrA.

What is ManiStyle?
ManiStyle is a monthly column that explores an idea, a style, a trend or a realm in SL and gives you some links to go explore and draw your own conclusions. MANIERA SL expresses an outlook on life that is part Vanity Fair and part Rolling Stone. In ManiStyle, we introduce you to our take on life and ask that you share your views and reactions.