Ground pie menuObject menuAlthough some of this has been touched on elsewhere - clicking and right-clicking on objects throughout the page about shopping, right-clicking on avatars in the talking page and right-clicking on the ground to get around, this page will focus exclusively on the various interactions from the ground, avatars and objects and their related responses. It won't be 100% comprehensive, many of these activities are scripted and the various ways scripts can interact can lead to almost infinite variations, but it should establish the principles so you can learn what is going on in any specific example. There will be a very simple example of scripted interactions below.

Clicking on an object

Edit; More > >The default left-click action is to touch an object. In many objects this won't do anything as objects must be scripted to respond to a touch. If you would like to see this in action, find somewhere where your Build button is bright, press it (or Cntl-4 or Tools>Select Tool>Create), and tap the magic-wand cursor on the ground or floor. A small plywood cube will appear (if you have been building before it may be a different shape; this will work with any of the prims, but not trees or plants). Close the edit window that also appears and hold your mouse over the prim you have just rezzed. The cursor should not change, and if you click the mouse button, nothing happens. There may be special areas set aside for building, which are normally called sandboxes. In addition, many locations in Second Life have a group affiliation which will allow building. Setting your group to the local group (right-click yourself and choose Groups from the pie menu, or Edit>Groups should permit this.

New ScriptNow right-click on the cube and choose edit from the pie menu. If there is a More > > button click it. Once you can see the long edit window, click the Content tab and then the New Script. You should see a script called “New Script” appear in the contents folder and a message that will say “Object: Hello, Avatar!” (if you have changed the name of the object, it will still say Hello, Avatar! but with a different object name in front of it). If you now close the edit window again and hold your mouse over the prim you will get a pointing hand cursor, and if you click the prim it will say “Touched” each time you click the prim. This is obviously very basic in terms of scripting functions, but it does illustrate what is going on.

Left click drop downIf you right-click and choose edit again (no need to choose More > > as Second Life remembers that for you), and the general tab, down at the bottom there is a drop down under When Left Clicked:. Although Touch/grab is the default, you may be able to change it to Sit on object, Buy object, Pay object, Open, Play parcel media or Open parcel media. Each of these has a different cursor symbol that you will come to recognise.


Right-clicking produces a pie menu of your various options. These options are different for the ground, an object, another avatar and your avatar. Although you may quibble about the exact order of items in each pie menu, they are arranged, by and large so the most commonly used options appear in the top layer of the pie menu and additional menus can be found by drilling down through the More > option which is always at the bottom if it is present. (Right-clicking on yourself doesn't have a More > option as there are only 6 choices; however, Take Off > is in the bottom position and offers you a wide range of choices of what you can take off.)

The pie menu will often have greyed out options: the items that fill the pie slots on each level are always the same, but are not always available. For example, if you right-click on an avatar that is already your friend, Add Friend is unavailable. If you right-click on an object that is unscripted and not for sale, most of the pie menu is greyed out.

Second Life sometimes, particularly if a lot of people are frantically clicking on objects in a small volume, misses some of the left-clicks. If this happens, right-clicking and choosing Touch from the top of the pie menu is a much more reliable way to have your touch recorded.

Sitting down and Standing up again

In principle you can sit on the ground or on any prim in Second Life. In practise, you can't sit on a prim you are already standing on, and certain other prims can be fussy about letting you sit on them. Second Life will pop up a message in the bottom right of your screen saying it cannot find a suitable surface to sit on in these cases. If you sit on the ground you have, by default, a different sitting position than if you sit on a prim.

Sitting on a prim or an object can cause unexpected things to happen. It is common for people who build furniture, vehicles etc. to include scripted prims with specific animations in them. So, for example, when you sit at the wheel of a car you have an animation of you sitting and holding the wheel; if you sit on a milking stool you may find you are apparently milking a cow; if you sit at a microscope you may find your camera has moved so that you are apparently looking down the microscope. There is no need to worry about this, as it is the intended behaviour of the object. If you wear an animation overrider, a tool that replaces the default animations, you may find you need to turn it off to make the animations in furniture work properly.

Standing up is as simple as clicking the Stand up button that appears when you are sat on something.

Blue boxes and the like

Sometimes there are more interactions available than simple click and sit. For example, scripted objects can have a range of options available, and use a blue box in the top right corner to give you the chance to respond. The blue box has space for text, for example to ask a question, and up to 12 buttons which give you the range of answers by clicking on the buttons. Similarly, if someone offers you a tp, the message from them will appear as a blue box up in the top right asking if you wish to accept it or not. The blue boxes, in other settings, might include permissions: for example if you clubbing there will often be a dance ball that allows your avatar to dance. Clicking this will ask you if you are willing to let the dance controller control your animations via a blue box in the top right corner of the screen. You should click yes so you start dancing.

All of the blue boxes are worth reading before you click them, but if you click too fast they won't do anything too bad - you can always relog to remove animation permissions for example. However, there is an orange box that crops up sometimes. This is the box that asks for debit permissions - that is permission to take money from you. Unless you are expecting this (for example you are setting up a vendor and expect to be able to give change) you should not click yes on this box. Scamming people in this way is quite rare, but not unknown.

I am not in any way affiliated with Linden Lab. This site advertises my work within their virtual environment. Valid CSS!

Valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional The terms Second Life, Linden Lab and SL are trademarks belonging to Linden Lab. No infringement of their trademark is intended. Usage here is nominative.


Learner's Materials
1 Walking (etc.)
2 Talking (etc.)
3 Shopping (etc.)
4 Interacting
5 Searching
Teacher's Materials
1 Conduct
2 Good approaches
3 Poor approaches
4 Changes in approach
5 Assessment in SL
6 Assessing a project
7 Assessing learning
Specific Tutorials
1 Building
2 Int. Building
3 Camera Controls
4 Groups
5 Land
6 Limits of SL
7 Scripting
8 Textures

Join Second Life
Read my blog