To get up and running with the MetaHarper Show Tools, wear or rez the box that contains the tools and copy them to a folder in your inventory.
- Find a place to build: Go to a place where you can rez objects and leave them out for many hours. Ensure you are not too close to any region boundaries or edges. When looking for build space, be sure to avoid the terrain floor and also avoid the 4096m build height limit. Don’t work directly on the terrain floor or you can have trouble rezzing objects that need to be moved down. Similarly don’t work too close to the 4096m altitute limit, or you will have trouble rezzing objects that need to be moved up. You should have at least 200 prims free, as a general guide, for set building and temporary rezzing of various HUDs and tools.
- Adopt the habit of watching your viewer’s ‘nearby/local chat’ text: When using the MST tools, the components will tell you what they are doing, or if there is an unexpected situation that must be addressed.
- (Optional: Rez your stage template if you have one): Some theaters give out stage templates to assist people creating shows. If you are building and act for a particular theater, ask the owner or theater manager if there is a “stage template” you can use to help build your act to the right size and shape.
- Place the MST Centerpoint: Find the “MST Centerpoint” object in your show tools folder. Rez this object on the ground. Move it to the center of your stage floor or performance area. If you are using a stage template for a particular theater, you may have instructions for where to place the centerpoint and what name to use for your centerpoint. (Some users will rez the MST Centerpoint under their stage floor to keep it out of sight, but when you are learning you can rez it directly on your stage floor, and then make the MST Centerpoint transparent in the SL Viewer’s build tools window later.)
- Name your Centerpoint: Using your viewer, select and edit this centerpoint. In the build tools window, change the name of the centerpoint object to something specific to you, such as ‘My stage”. Note: If your venue uses MST Cameras, the venue will likely require you to name your centerpoint something specific. Ask the theater owner/theater manager if this applies to you should you intend to use MST Cameras. Otherwise, you can name your centerpoint as you desire.
- Rez and name your Performance Engine: Next, find the object “MST_PerformanceEngine_rename_me” in your show tools folder. Rez this object on the ground. You should also select and edit this object. In your viewer’s build tools window, rename this performance engine to reflect the name of your act. For example “PirateAct”. You should keep the name of your engine short with little punctuation, as some features you wish to use later may require you to type the engine name.
You have now rezzed the basic components that you will need to quickly build and take down your performance scene. You can think of the above components as the digital version of an efficient stage crew, or in SL terms, you may think of the above tools as theater-specific rezbox that can hold your choreography routines, special effects, scenes, and props.