Not often will I put myself out there with an editorial piece, since I much prefer the facts and letting them speak for themselves. In light of being asked this very question many times I decided to write this and let it stand for itself. Let's face it, the number of grids out there available to the public is overwhelming. I can't count the number of people I have dialogued with on one of the most well known and famous virtual worlds out there, namely Second Life. Seems the majority of residents on Second Life are unaware of the existence of any virtual world beyond Second Life. Of those who have ventured out and looked for additional alternatives to Second Life most do not stop at one alternative grid. They are among the bold and adventurous who will try a mulititude of grids all slightly differing from one another but with enough similarities to make it easy enough to acclimate to the new grid.
Which grid and why? I am sure we have all met our the fanboi type who go a little over the top as a fan of one particular grid over another. With each grid differning slightly from every other grid its no wonder why some features appeal to the masses while losing an audience to its less popular features.
Having been, lived and worked on a variety of grids for nearly 8 years now, like anyone who has been grid hopping, I have my favorites and my less favorites. When asked "Why Island Oasis?" I have more than enough reasons to give.
Lets start of with my personal sentiment of "I AM NOT A NUMBER!" Many grids out there have, over time, gained a reputation of treating its residents as a number, merely one of the masses, while catering to special clients. After spending time here on Island Oasis I am more than pleased to not just hear it quoted but see it in action that IO Staff truely cares about its residents as individuals.
(Now with that said, I will be featuring a series of articles that are interviews with the residents here on IO. If you would like to participate in an interview to let us know about your time here in Island Oasis. Please let us know and we will schedule a time to meet with you for a live interview.)
Let's get back to the topic at hand: Why IO? The ease of use of Island Oasis. To qualify that statement, lets begin with the experience of as starting over in a new grid. I have had that experience numerous times over. Some grids are ready at a moments notice to greet incoming new residents. Some offer perks such as free items or a place to stay, still others focus on lower pricing and higher prim. Island Oasis seems to have it all.
Mentors are on hand to assist residents. At the landing spot where you first log into Island Oasis for the first time you can quiclky see who of the official Staff of Island Oasis is online. There are mailboxes for anyone to leave a message with staff. Nearby is the Freebie Mall one can quickly stock their inventory with the avatar appearance basics: clothes, shoes, hair, and more. Need sculpts or textures to help get your started? What about buildings or furniture? Landscaping or animations? Its all available at the Freebie Mall. There is even room for content creators to donate a free item(s) to share with the other residents here.
As far as the experience of being a content creator coming to a new grid Island Oasis lowers the overhead cost to starting your business here in that upload and imports are free, listing on their marketplace is free, creating a group is free and making use of listing classified ads for your wares are free. All this collectively lowers not only the overhead start -up cost of beginning in a new grid but the continual cost of maintaining a business.
Every resident qualifies for their own free island parcel but beyond that their regions available to purchase sport low cost and high prim. A value I have not seen matched in any other grid. The extra options when purchasing the Premium region for only $15 USD/mo of their pre-fab sims are something exclusive to Island Oasis. There are 4 available pre-fabs that come complete with furnished buildings, landscaping & more. So you could order a premium region and have it move in ready and useable from the moment you first teleport to your newly rezzed region.
Something money can't buy is the sense of fellowship and community here on Island Oasis that is extended to new residents. We can all relate to how helpful family and friends can be and how it may feel to look around at cliquish groups that are difficult to break into and feel welcome. Yet for a new resident there are many existing residents here to welcome you make you feel at home.