But let me start with the good stuff.
This year's theme for the birthday party that the Lindens throw for themselves - perhaps that's a tad harsh - was something like "The Future of Virtual Worlds." I suppose that the word "future" carries with it a science-fiction connotation, so I wasn't surprised at the Blade Runner-style builds, but one might have thought that a higher fraction of builders would have thought beyond the obvious.
One build that I did enjoy was that of BlakOpal, a Steampunk "City of Tomorrow." In addition to the neat retro/futuristic setting, the build had a cute story (see the signs out front) and over a dozen pictures to promote various Steampunk sims, in addition to the self-promotion of the BlakOpal stores.
Though I don't have a picture to prove it, I shared my time in the BlakOpal build with a lady who wore so little that, were she to visit the Steamlands, riots would break out in the streets, with wives seeking to beat her and force her into more attire, and the men beating a path to her in order to impress her with their, ah, eloquence. But I digress.
The other item of pure amazement was that there was fairly little lag, especially compared with Tar Pit '08, also known as SL5B. I encountered a sign offering a tour of the SL6B sims, so I rested my legs and saved the leather on my shoes by sitting down and letting the automated vehicle do the driving. (See the vehicle in the front of the picture below.)
The vehicle worked fairly well - the ride was smoother than some of the vehicles that I have been on - but the claim that it would take me around all 20 of the sims in about 35 minutes was overstated. After about a half hour, having covered perhaps half the sims, my "tour" abruptly ended when we tried to enter a sim that was too full for the vehicle. I had to laugh at that.
Other builds looked impressive in their own way, but I wasn't particularly drawn to them.
And in something of an odd juxtaposition, the Midian City build - admittedly, nothing but a picture of the Midian City sim - was abutting a children's exhibit, complete with dozens of small pictures of smiling tots. I pictured them growing up, getting armed, and heading to Midian City for a rumble.