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on February 02, 2008, 04:23:00 AM

The Dragons of Pern ("DoP") group was originally created in April, 2007 by Kalira Stromer.  It was the first affiliated roleplay group at the Isle of Wyrms ("IoWs") in Second Life.  Because it was an affiliated group and the acting officers were extremely busy Guardians and officers of the IoWs, its group resources in terms of time were somewhat limited.  They decided they could only focus on one aspect of Pern, so they made the dragons the focus, kept the roles to dragons and riders only, and set the timeline in the 4th Pass.  Never the less, these members put the work into creating the group.  They created a DoP wiki for group members to use, which is hosted on the IoWs website, they developed the original breath weapon and threadfall system, they created the practice target rezzer that is currently given for free to all DoP members, and they built the by-invitation-only membership up to about 70 people - all while maintaining their commitments and responsibilities to the IoWs.

At the time of its creation the DoP was intent on showing support of the IoWs and one of the ways that it did so was to require the use of only IoWs dragons.  There are no "Pern Dragons" available for purchase in Second Life, and pretty much any dragon you might purchase will require some fairly extensive modifications to make it more "Pern-like."  These dedicated members took up the task of helping the membership to modify their dragons.  They created a modding guide on the wiki, they developed helpful scripted objects and they set about meeting the membership to assist in their modifications.  This was no small task, given the wide array of building skill levels of the average SL user.  Still they persevered.

Today the DoP group is owned by Ryu Darragh and Soo Novi.  Ryu is a Guardian at the IoWs and Soo is the owner of the Gianfar Peaks estate.  While the group is still intent on showing its support for the IoWs, and still an affiliated roleplay group there, it was decided that allowing only IoWs dragons was too restrictive for the membership, and that the membership had grown to include folks who wished to actualize a broader spectrum of roles.  The DoP responded by opening up the membership to any dragon creator and adding more roles to a group with the typically limited role availability (tags) that comes with Second Life groups.  They added the fire lizard, harper and crafter roles.  They set the new timeline at the dawn of the 9th Pass because they believed more people would be familiar with that timeline, even though they were fearful too much tech might become a problem.  They opened the possibility of creating additional guides and services so that the membership could participate with its own creations and the membership has responded with their own lovingly crafted items, available for free to members of the group.  As of this writing some of those items include:

  • Riding Leathers by Solomon Draken
  • Firestone Harness by Baen Skall
  • Auto-rider (a whimsical and humorous solution to the riderless dragon problem) by Sheewa Nemeth
  • Eye Texture/ Mood Changer scripted by Tracy Glineaux and Deadpool Whitfield, textures by Soo Novi
  • Sculptie Knob Horns by Aisling Loon
  • Dragon Hide Texture by Soo Novi
  • New Threadfall Rezzer by Armandi Goodliffe
  • Updated Firebreath - Original Design by Ryu Darragh and Talarus Luan, updated by Neikrad Joffree and Sierra Janus

In recent days a modding kit for one form of fire lizard was made available by Stripey Larkin, and rider controlled saddles designed specifically for Pern roleplay are soon to be released.  One saddle for the IoWs dragons made by Armandi Goodliffe and one for the Grendel's Riding Drake by Eren Padar.  Both saddles are capable of short "between" jumps and there will be a very reasonable charge of 100L for the saddles (the equivalent of about 50 cents USD).  We expect these newer items to be made available in the near future.

Now that the Gianfar sims are available, the roles for Pern fans will expand significantly still, but we expect that the Dragons of Pern will remain a founding group and driving force in the sims.  While we are in construction we are considering what specific role the DoP will be playing in the sims; should they be the dragon only group or the weyrfolk group?  By the time we launch we will have these logistical concerns ironed out.

In the meantime, all new comers who wish to join the sims during the construction process are being added to the Dragons of Pern group so they will get all the notices and can be involved.  For now we are adding everyone as a Dragon Rider, as it is the 'everyone' tag.  Once the sims open for roleplay there will be other groups made available and shuffling of groups and roles until we get settled will be allowed and even encouraged.

If you'd like to join the Dragons of Pern group in Secondlife then please drop a notecard in the "Drop Hides Here" vase at the Gianfar sim spawning point.  Title it "DoP Application <your name here>" and tell us a bit about your knowledge of Pern and what role you hope to play.  Someone will get back to you when we've a moment to add you to the group and speak to you personally.  We look forward to meeting you!
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