Dark Spot Designs continues their line of avatars with their new Civet. Civets are rather curious, but interesting animals, whether we’re talking about how partially digested coffee beans from Civets sell for thousands of dollars, or their distinctive fur. In this review we discuss Dark Spot Design’s vision of what an anthropomorphic Civet would look like.
Out of the Box:
- Both Male and Female variations
- Viewer 2.0 (Transparent clothing layer) Ready. Pre-Viewer 2.0 Compatible
- Talking Jaw
- Tongue Toggle
- Manual Jaw Adjustment
- Preset Muzzle + Tongue Combo Positions
- Moving Ears
- Individual Ear Settings
- Preset Ear Positions
- Rotate Ears by X,Y,Z, (see HUD)
- Twitch Speed
- Tail Settings
- Tail Length and Fluffiness
- Tail Swish speed, etc. etc.
- Eye Expressions
- One or both eyes
- Different Eye Colours
- Dilating Pupils
- Different Pupil Type
- Eye Shine Options
- Eye Blink Frequency Settings
- Recolourable Pawpads and Finger/Toe-digits and claws
- Retractable and Recolourable Claws
- PG & Mature Skins (for females and males)
- Head and Ear Piercings
- Tail and Ear Touch Action Dialog Box
- (e.g. “<Someone> grabs <Your Name>’s tail… maybe time to worry…”)
- Whisker and Pawprint Colour choices
- Free package of Alpha Layers to use on other avatars
Build and Skin:
The textures for the Civet avatar do an excellent job of portraying the species they’re made to reflect. While users might opt for the more ‘natural’ colour option, Dark Spot Designs continues to provide a huge range of alternate colours for users who want all matters of greens, blues, yellows, or whatnot. The skin is the usual DSD standard of quality; ample shading and other such details to provide definition to areas like the pecs, breasts, or abs. The textures underlying the fur patterns are very smooth and simple, which then allows the detail of the spots and stripes to stand out all the more. The patterns all over the body have been intricately hand-painted, doing good justice to Civets as a species.
The avatar comes with the option to unpack the avatar first with or without 2.0 friendly alpha layers and attachments, then you choose the gender. Each gender comes with the appropriate shape, skins, (as well as mature skins for both the male and female avatars), and the special hairstyle for each sex. The male and female skins feature nipples which aren’t badly textured, but they look a bit like stickers on top of the fur, rather than surrounded by fur. The quality of the attachments themselves is good, with clean, clear-cut sculpts and minimal creasing anywhere on the body.
As usual, Dark Spot Designs has done a very good job on their digitigrade legs. It would also seem that they’ve stepped up the game on their feet though, as the feet are as well constructed as the leg itself. The digitigrade leg attachment itself meets the back of the foot almost seamlessly. The combination of the foot and the leg together is extremely robust in their design and texturing. Users can change the colour of the pawpads to pink, black, or just white, then tint them a custom colour. Additionally, they can change the length of the claws, choose between 3 alternate toe textures for each toe, and choose from multiple claw-colours (like pink, green, etc.). All in all, very solid work on the legs and feet.
The only tail that comes with this avatar is the flexible one. While the markings are a slight bit less complex than a majority of the body, they compliment the skin well. As is custom with Dark Spot Designs, people are able to change the fluffiness of the tail, as well as its length, among other options concerning its movement and touch-dialogues.
The hands follow suit with the feet, made in a similar style, but made out to be more like human hands crossed with a paw. Like the feet, users are able to change the textures on the tips of the paws, as well as recolour the paw-pads to something new. Options to change the claw colour are included here as well. The positioning of the fingers is relaxed, and the size is more than appropriate, negating the need for wrist prims.
The face for this avatar is less intricately patterned as the body, but that allows the facial features to stand out over the textures. The eyes stand out in particular, using the same eyeball textures employed in the previously released DSD lion avatar. The new style involves cleaner textures, as well as alternative pupil shapes, sizes, eyeball shine, colour, and more. The default eyeball textures could come with smoother textures on the irises. The brows themselves come with a few different expressions, where you can set the position of one eyebrow or both. Sometimes it is a little difficult to see some of the facial expressions, so perhaps the addition of eyebrow fur texturing might accent it.
For this avatar, the muzzle is short and somewhat petite, though it ends off with a prominent nose. The interior of the muzzle itself is fully detailed, with believable gums and a full arrangement of teeth. Users are able to open their muzzle to variable widths, and the tongue can move into a few different positions as some of the pictures included with this review show. Below is a picture of some of the kinds of faces that can be made using the HUD settings.
The head as a whole has a complete look to it, from the innocent-appearing eyes to the enigmatic facial expression on the muzzle. The way that the head is shaped, users can get by without hair and still look extremely presentable, thanks to the natural look the head has without hair. Overall, the head has some of the best texture-work we’ve seen from this creator. The ears finish off the image of the face with rounded, concave ears and fluff at the sides of the cheeks.
Features and Heads-Up Display (HUD):
This avatar is completely controlled by the HUD. The HUD itself features a commissioned photo of an anthropomorphic civet, joining the number of other creators who have used pleasant drawings as an accompaniment to the HUD. The photo below shows all of the different parts of the HUD. Feature-wise, this avatar is packed full of different options, and the HUD is very user-friendly in the way it allows users to select them.
As usual, the avatar comes with all the features we’ve come to see over time from Dark Spot Designs. Regular users of their avatars will be able to find the multitude of head piercings in the Accessories folder. Through left-clicking and holding down on the head or ears with the piercing, you’ll get a dialogue menu which allows you to choose which piercings you want visible or not, as well as to change the colours of selected portions of the piercings. This level of customisation may not be needed for novice users, but it sure saves a lot of time spent modding. The arrangement of piercings, is, also as usual, well done.
The other key accessories that are included with this avatar are the leg-warmers. Like others we have seen from Dark Spot Designs in the past, these leg-warmers are very high quality, and completely, thoroughly customiseable through the same left-click-and-hold-for-over-1-second technique used for piercings. The photo above shows how well one can customise these leg-warmers.
Before I forget; the avatar comes with two separate hairs for each gender. The female hair stands out in particular, not only because it is well done, but because the hair is treated as a kind of ‘extension’ of the fur; it’s long head-fur that has been styled to become a human-ish haircut. This is probably one of the first times we have seen a creator do this on a Second Life avatar. The male’s hair is slightly less impressive, going for a bit more of an anime-ish look instead.
As we mentioned before, the head-size and the dimensions are well thought out, allowing users to very easily fit a third party hair to their head. Being modifiable and copiable, users should have no real issues being able to customise this avatar to their liking.
The Dark Spot Designs Civet is one of the strongest avatars we’ve seen from Dark Spot Designs to date. The avatar reflects the animal nicely, and is filled to the brim with features. Not everyone will be interested in the piercings, but the included legwarmers are a definite asset to this avatar. While this avatar comes in both male and female forms, this particular one seems easier to make a female out of than male. However, this doesn’t stop the avatar from being extremely customiseable and cute.