Updated! The below is a list of the top virtual worlds on the internet. The list spans PC and Console games, massively multiplayer online role playing games, and social networking 3d communities. Many of these are free virtual worlds. Check it out below.
1. Second Life – Internet virtual world started in 1999 and run by Linden Labs. There is no better place to create, buy, and sell products. The recent introduction of voice chat has helped stave off complaints on performance issues. With the release of Viewer 2 Second Life is more flexible and accesible than ever.
Why is Second Life number one over World of Warcraft? Here are ten reasons. #2 continued below:
2. World of Warcraft – Multiplayer online role playing game created by Blizzard Entertainment in 2001. One of the most popular online games and the highest paid subscriber base of over 11.5 million with the latest installment Wrath of the Lich King. Leveling up is the ultimate goal. There has been a crackdown on trying to make money with this game by selling gold, characters, items, etc.
3. Sony Playstation Home – This MMORPG exclusively for Playstation 3 console owners boasts over 12 Million accounts. In the virtual world multiple gamezones offer activities, streaming video, and live events. Read 10 Reasons why Second Life is better than PlayStation Home. It is free to play and Microtransactions for virtual clothes, furniture, and gear earned Sony over $1 million dollars in Playstation Home in a very short period of time.
4. The Sims 3 – from Electronic Arts has a historic following. Relatively new to the game, The Sims 3 is also available for the iPhone and saw heavy demand for the Sims 3 download torrent. Combined with heavy advertising and the ability to know interact and move around online like a more traditional MMORPG should spell success. Over 3.7 million copies of Sims 3 have been sold. Read the Top 10 Reasons to Play the Sims 3.
5. IMVU – Chat with new and old friends in a customizable 3d chat room, create your own customized avatar and chat with friends while creating custom rooms and objects and even earning money. You even get one thousand free credits when you sign up. IMVU Inc. was created in 2004 and has 20 million registered users and $1 million in revenue each month. IMVU concurrent users have passed 105,000 players.
6. Blue Mars – This virtual world from Avatar Realty has a fresh look and uses the CryEngine 2. Avatar Reality recently raised an additional $4.2 million dollars in additional capital and continues development.
7. Utherverse – 3D social dating and adult virtual world created by Utherverse Digital Inc in 2002. The game has grown to 600,000 users and $10 million in annual revenue according to Chief Executive Officer Brian Shuster.
The most popular location is the Redlight Center (RLC) based on Amsterdam. Virtual Vancouver has also been released along with Rude Virtual. The Utherverse uses an in-world rewards-based virtual currency known as Rays. The game also offers private virtual housing known as Zabys. They are free with a VIP subscription. Utherverse is basically a virtual dating service with more adult elements such as Zindra the adult continent in Second Life
8. Kaneva – 2D and 3D social networking and virtual world created by Kaneva, Inc 2004. Quickly gaining popularity for game developers. Easily combine video, social networks, and 2D.
9. Active Worlds – Virtual Reality 3D World created by Active Worlds in 1997.
10. Meet Me – Opening in December this Japanese version will have excellent graphics. Created by Transcosmos, Inc. It will be based on Tokyo Japan and will be G rated with many rules such as no flying.
11. RuneScape – is the largest free MMORPG game in the world with well over 5 million players. It has hard to argue with those numbers and the fact that this Java based game from Jagex Ltd has been around since 1998. It continues to be a popular virtual world and a great way to make money in a virtual economy.
12. HiPiHi – Developed in China and heavily censored by the government.
13. A World of My Own – Created by Sir Richard Branson with Virgin Games owning a 20 percent stake.
14. Moove – German based virtual world created in 1994. Emphais on 3d Chat and dating. Based on rooms instead of worlds.
15. Update! Google Lively has closed its doors and as such must move to the bottom of the list. It started as My World as Google Lively – Secret Google Second Life Killer being tested by students at Arizona State University. Will integrate with all of Google’s other services making this the most usefull of all the online virtual 3d Worlds. Now available read more about Google’s Lively Here.
16. Updated! – Unfortunately There.com is now closed – This MTV Networks run Laguna Beach Style virtual world created by There Inc. in 2001 and ran until March 9, 2010.
I am planning on adding more information to this post shortly. If you have some information on any of these 10 virtual 3d worlds please comment and I will add it to this post.