As of January 8, 2012, the Chouchou regions have been back in Second Life and open to the public.
I popped over yesterday to take the Exodus Viewer out on a spin for a photo taking trip and try out all the features for screenshots. The photos I am sharing here are straight from SL, no post processing at all. They were taken using the Chouchou Cinematic HUD, and the graphics and visuals features available in the Exodus viewer. The HUD is available for free at the landing point.
The cinematic view that the hud provides gives you a feeling of walking through a movie and was quite an interesting experience. But in the interest of full disclosure, I found it very difficult to move around while wearing the hud. Your camera controls change, and while the effect is like watching yourself in a widescreen movie, it took some time getting used to.
Do try it though. It took some time, but I started to get the hang of it.
I’m really impressed with Exodus so far. It doesn’t run as fast as the official SL viewer on my system, but it’s faster than Firestorm and I haven’t had one crash yet. I have however, had to restart a few times while taking screenshots because for some odd reason my screen sometimes turns black when I check off ‘deferred rendering’ in the graphics preferences.
But for all the built in photo taking options, I don’t mind restarting. It’s fun to play with all those ‘visuals’ settings in graphics.
Chouchou is a minimalist region, made up of three sims. I didn’t see any teleporters or info to get to the other two sims at the main landing point, but you can easily open up your big map and tp from there.
As minimalist as this region is, it’s breathtakingly beautiful and peaceful. I found myself never wanting to leave.
Go check it out. You can also read more about it on the Chouchou blog.