Some months ago Allyn burst into my home with the news of MetaPlace. For some years he and I worked on the creation of video games; for years my hope was to create an environment where one could experience the Tarot in a virtual reality. Allyn announced that MetaPlace could provide us with that very thing.
Between Allyn, my good friend Michael Woody and our ever faithful Tech support provided by Robert, we focused our efforts to create two worlds: one a Virtual Gallery where you can see my sculpture as if you were in a museum and shrink you down to the size of the jewelry in virtual cases, and more.
The Second world is the Tarot Garden. We focused most of our time in there. After honing our efforts in creating animations that simulate fire, water, wind energy flows and other interesting figments, we were able to cobble together a series of “places” within the world.
You first arrive in the Court Yard: the landing pad if you will, designed to familiarize you with the presentation. There is a short video that you can click on in the center of a grotto: a three dimensional “Tree of Life”. From there you can see the “Three Gardens” of the Major Arcana.
The First Garden lands you before the Fool Amulet suspended in space. There is a harp that you may click that plays the tone attributed to that piece. There is a short video that presents the location of the amulet on the Tree of Life. Each amulet is “clickable” opening a window that presents a short description and a link directly to the corresponding page in my website, should you want to learn more about the piece or purchase a copy.
Following that you walk on a path leading to The Magician, also suspended in space, only there is an animation that illustrates the energy flow. Each amulet is similarly presented with the corresponding elements, videos and tones. Benches are provided for your avatar to perch presenting the screen framed perfectly for viewing. Sound effects add immersion of the experience. The Second Garden holds the Strength amulet through Temperance while the Third Garden holds the Devil through the Universe: all framed in appropriate environmental sights and sounds.
MetaPlace is often referred to as a “Social Network” but is also a “Sandbox” style of game engine. This provides folks who want to develop their ideas into interactive environments the opportunity to display their passions and ideas. Game, demonstrations, concerts and exhibits are throughout the MetaPlace Universe. In order to participate, there is a brief avatar selection and tutorial before you can go out and explore, however this hurdle is a very low impact, well worth the five minutes to get familiar with the system.
If you are a student learning the Tarot or a seasoned professional, you will find the Tarot Garden an experience that will lift your spirits and provide you with a moment of good cheer. Please come see the Tarot Garden and enjoy a virtual world of Tarot come to life.