What makes IMVU more than a chat program?
Katy asked this question, “What makes IMVU more than a chat program?” this afternoon in the comments on the post about getting started in IMVU. She’ll probably have some more to add but I’ll try to answer this. I think she was comparing it to something like yahoo messenger or text messages. Part of the answer is obviously the visual component but I think there’s more to it than that.
I think it’s the variety and customizability of it that makes it feel so real that you start to associate with it to the point of being able to feel it. If you make it look like yourself and spend hours and hours with it, you really feel it on an emotional level. Just like when you are in a sexy pose even if you weren’t really in the mood but when you started, you almost can’t help but feel sexier. The visual aspect makes it feel more real and combined with the communication, creates often makes very powerful emotions.
The emotions are what makes this feel more real and so much more than just texting. It’s more than a game and more than chatting. I think it might have been Katy that described it as the early stages of the Holo Deck, from Star Trek. You really can go anywhere or do anything, and be anyone you want here. It’s less than real life, but it does feel real not in a physical way necessarily, but at least in an emotional way. The people are real and the emotions are real, even if you’re not really there.
We weren’t really flying but emotionally I think we were. This seems like as good of an example as any, to show why this is more than just chatting. But you also have to realize that this is a wonderful loving friend that I am extremely close to, too. It’s a absolutely amazing feeling to let your walls down and share this type of loving fantasy with someone you really care about.