The sudden news of the shut down was a shock. Five days notice? For a grid like InWorldz that has so many residents, even if a large portion of those did not log in anymore? It was still the busiest grid outside of SL. How could this be happening? I was dumbfounded when I read the Discord message that morning before I was even out of bed.
So the shock sort of wears off and the packing starts.. or well, unpacking in many cases – taking out your inventory objects that you want to take with you to the Promised Land , stuff the non object things into prims, and then leave those prims out on sandboxes or regions. My eyes are leaking as Im doing this, but I wipe them away and just scroll through the stuff trying to think ‘what is most important to save?’
Sandboxes getting full, masses of objects laying on regions everywhere. Planes, boats, homes, clothing, shoes, hair. Then there is the concern by some merchants – “how can I bring my ‘Licensed for InWorldz only’ items into a new entity? Sure same avatar permissions and basic data but is it still InWorldz? InWorldz is in debt right? I mean there was that money raised for financial problems ? Right… so, if InWorldz has a new name, new servers with new host and all that, it’s…. not really InWorldz is it? ” — so now many merchants/creators are deciding that they aren’t letting their creations or licensed- to -use products off of IW. They can go down with the ship. The ship is sinking.
VKC dog is rezzed… poof he’s gone. Right, another thing not allowed to go to the Promised Land. Looking at all the things. The huge ship my dear friend and partner made, sitting to my left that takes up the whole sim, my favourite skirt… that I just remembered isnt going to be allowed through. Some old school prim builds, oversized that my best friend in my first days of IW made, they get piled on top of each other. Too much, I want to save everything. I can’t do that though so.. so fine, its just notecards now really, memories. Dropping into prims. Packing up in a panic. I realize I’m tired. And I realize that I no longer understand what happened. I just know that we were given 5 days to permanently terminate. It’s too overwhelming to process and to choose what to try to salvage , so it becomes easier to just take a deep breath, remind myself that I knew this was always a possibility, and log off. Investing so much time and emotion into a place built on pixels and imagination … nothing lasts forever. Not real life, not virtual life.
It was with trepidation that I logged in the next day. Set my alarm early so I could attend the ‘last party’. Astoria played the perfect tunes and there were some great people there and we counted down to the ‘closing time’ – 3pm IWT. As it approached things got rocky, and we needed to leave that region and go to IDI. So we did. Regions were being closed down all around as the OARs were taken. 3pm came and went. The grid was still there.
And we were still there.
Into the night regions were taken down and eventually come evening, all that was left was IDI. So we went to IDI and waited for the rapture. People I’d never got to meet were there – Daniel Voyager , Mimi from Mimi’s Choice, Fuschia Nightfire – the creator of the first dress I found at Fleure’s region 6 years ago. Names I had known but had never seen in my ‘nearby’ – we were all there at IDI waiting.
By 4am, my nerves were shot , and my heart was heavy with sad . I realized that I would stay there until it went offline unless I forced myself to understand that it didn’t matter if I wasn’t there for last call. There would never be the perfect time for a goodbye. So I logged. And I didn’t log back in. The servers were still up later that morning, RackSpace hadn’t shut them off yet I guess, and the decision was made to pull the plug at noon. I had to start work at noon so I wasn’t there for that and it’s ok.
It’s done. It shouldn’t have been such a surprise, numbers had fallen, I know things were tight. But the short notice was a huge shock.
My partner and I are settled in DigiWorldz now, with many friends from IW and new friends that we’ve made. I know being so invested in a virtual world that can be taken down any time is foolish. But it happens. IW was my first real virtual home – because it’s where I had the best , most enriching virtual experiences. SL was too big for me and I felt lost. IW was perfect. There is never another ‘first home’. Goodbye InWorldz.
|Starting out in InWorldz 6 years ago with my first region ever.|
|My last region in InWorldz - Raven's Reef.|