China’s answer to Second Life?

hipihi.jpgFor those of you Second Lifers who are waiting for the next big thing, the first 3D virtual platform from Chinese has just entered public beta testing.

HiPiHi works in a similar way to SL, users can create & customise avatars, own virtual land and share or build pre-fab objects in a similar way to the SL prim system.

If truth be told it looks very similar to SL but we’ll have to wait & see how far it takes the metaverse beyond what’s currently on offer.

The bad news is that whilst the the Beijing based company is looking to cooperate with “global leaders in the Internet and communication industry to establish a set of relevant hardware and software standards for the development of the 3D platform”, they still don’t yet support the mac platform.

Nevertheless this is a market where more than 20 million Chinese game regularly, spending almost US$500m. Although the government in Beijing was reported to be introducing controls to deter people from playing longer than three hours, the measures were designed to combat addiction to MMORPG (massive multiplayer online role playing games) such as World of Warcraft and Lineage II.

Given that metaverses are time intensive games and in fact, depend very much on the amount of time spent in-world (especially for those residents operating genuinely viable virtual businesses), it will be interesting to see how HiPiHi tackles the big men up top.

One to watch. Check it out :: HiPiHi