This page will contain hints, tips & tricks, and any information that may improve your life as a pony (or trainer)! It especially will contain things that some SL avatars don’t discover for years. Many of these things may be “no brainer” obvious to you, but we can almost guarantee there will be something new.
The organization of this page will change over time; it’s impossible to know what items may come in and when. So let’s start with
CAM 1–FIX THE VIEWING ANGLE
There is a great little Camera Control HUD available free on Marketplace, that will lock the camera exactly where you want it. The cam will NOT move up and down when you are using mouse steering (see the “Mouselook & ‘Mouse on Butt'” section of this page) and you can modify the angle with slight edits to the notecard. Camera Control HUD at the SL MP gives you all the info you need:
MOUSELOOK & “MOUSE ON BUTT”
ML 1–WHY USE MOUSELOOK?
- You can move and turn very fast in mouselook (ML). SO:
- You may find you get better scores and learn faster using ML.
- You get a much more immersive experience;the first-person view where you see your own body when you look down.
ML 2–KEYBOARD SHORTCUTS
MANY of SL’s keyboard shortcuts work in ML, and when you are unable to easily click things with your mouse, they can be really invaluable. A few of the best are:
- Ctrl-I opens/closes Inventory
- Ctrl-M turns the Map on/off (Use the map for off-sim carting!)
- Ctrl-Shift-M turns the Minimap on/off
- Ctrl-8, Ctrl-0, Ctrl-9 respectively ZOOM your camera out, zoom it in, or reset it to normal. This can be a HUGE help using ML! (More explanation of these shortcuts will be in the PHOTOGRAPHY section soon.) BE SURE to always Ctrl-9 when you are finished; the camera does not reset even if you relog.
- Remember that many Windows shortcuts like Ctrl-C, Ctrl-X, Ctrl-V work too.
There are many more keyboard shortcuts on the official SL Website.
ML 3–CLICKING HUDs IN MOUSELOOK
Sometimes when ponying in mouselook, you need to click on something on your screen, like the camera controls, or a HUD, or a chat box. To do this, hold down your ALT key. (Yes, it’s the same way you focus your camera on something in the normal third-person view.)
ML 4–MOUSE ON BUTT (or BACK)
Most ponies know that mouselook allows you to steer faster and with more control than using the keyboard. However, there are times you want the same level of control but want to remain in third person view. (Maybe you’re in an event where it’s good to see your surroundings, or maybe you just enjoy looking at your beautiful Pony self.) Some people even have nausea issues with mouselook. These people can use the Mouse on Butt method. (It may have a more technical name too.)
To steer, place the pointer over your avatar’s butt, then click and hold the mouse. Try moving the mouse around. Your avatar should turn with the mouse as long as you have the mouse button held. Now try moving forward and steering as you go, moving the mouse left and right.
(Important note: you must click on an UNSCRIPTED place on your body! So, for example, aiming at your scripted pony tail or armbinder won’t work. If you can not find a good place, you can aim at your Name Bubble instead.)
The big downside to Mouse on Butt is having to keep your finger held down all the time. If you are using Windows, there is a way around this: you can turn on a setting called ClickLock. When you have ClickLock turned on, giving a short click on an object acts as having the click held. You need to click a second time to “unclick” it.
To turn on ClickLock, go to the Control Panel (Settings in Windows 10), and select Mouse Settings). From there, you can check the box for ClickLock. Remember to turn it off later, as it can be annoying when doing other computer things.
Whether you find holding the left button more annoying or turning ClickLock off and on is up to you.
Also see item CAM 1–FIX THE VIEWING ANGLE.
ML 4–RIGHT-CLICK WALK
Here’s a bonus to try with Mouse on Butt: while continuing to hold down the left mouse button for steering, press the RIGHT mouse button to WALK (instead of using the UP-ARROW key). Release the button to stop.
FD 1–SAVE THE STRING
Having trouble remembering the character string as it fades or gets bumped off your Chat box? Copy/paste it into something that will stay there–could be an IM window or a small notecard–and slip it in the corner.
(You can also just scroll the Chat window up a bit, and new chat will not bump it off. But you won’t see any new Open Chat that comes thru, either.)
FD 2–KEEP TRACK OF YOUR DIRECTION
If you lose track of the direction you’re going, chant “clock clock clock …” as you go around circles that way, and “counter counter counter….” when an “x” makes you switch.
When doing a complex pattern, some ponies retype the character string in upper/lower case, where clockwise circles are CAPITALS and counterclockwise are lower case. SO for example, AxBxC-D-HxF would be A x b x C – D – H x f .
SD 1–COUNT THE CIRCLES
Maybe the most common error ponies make in Silent Dressage is miscounting their times around the Circle or Figure-8. So, do NOT think it is dumb to COUNT to yourself as you walk! Say out loud: “1 1 1 1 1” then “2 2 2 2” as you go around the patterns. (For the Figure-8, count each circle separately so you get up to 6.)
SD 2–BACKING UP
Backing up: If your pony AO turns you around when you try to back up, try this workaround. Press and HOLD DOWN both the UP and DOWN arrow keys. Then release just the UP arrow key. You should walk backwards without spinning around.
SLA1 KaTrina has this pair of helpful hints for learning Slalom; they go together:
- Select one end of the Start Line, either left or right. Once you do that, start your slalom at this spot every time. You’ll develop the muscle memory by doing the slalom lane the same way each time; you will also always go around the last post in the same direction.
- Whichever end of the line you start from, place your mouse on the opposite edge of your mousepad. This will prevent you from running out of pad when you go around the last post.