Hybridz items are intended to address the needs of those into the heavy rubber / rubber doll look; as such, they are not to everyone’s taste. Certainly, some of the designs push the boundaries of “good taste” so that even those with darker kinkier sides may find some of the offerings in the store passing beyond acceptable boundaries. But in fairness, this is not in itself a reason to judge the range. Second Life encompasses many views and desires, and while some may find some of what is on offer at Hybridz to push a number of boundaries, this is no reason to condemn them out-of-hand.
Personally, as one with a kink towards “latex encapsulation”, I should find much to please me at Hybridz – and it is not as if I’ve been without exposure to it over the years. Sadly, this is not the case – and not for the reasons noted above. The simple fact is that while other BDSM ranges have evolved over the same period of time, Hybridz has not; while there seems to by a lot on offer, the fact remains that at its heart, much of what Hybridz offers is a simple variation on a single theme. So much so that while they may be good for a one-off purchase, the overall feelings of the range is one of “got one, got ’em all”. Indeed, while it can be said that on their first appearance on the market Hybridz products offered something fresh and new, nothing has really been done to capitalise on this over the years and it has reached a point today where the majority of the range could be described as repetitively bland, showing little in the way of originality in either design or scripting.
Even the more “fun” items among the Hybridz range are looking decidedly dated. Take the “Latex Balloon Girl” outfit. While Alpha Masks are a relatively “new” implementation within Second Life, they have nevertheless been around long enough to be adapted into the majority of SL Viewers, both official and third-party; and many, many content creators have switched over to using them. Yet, in the Balloon Girl, Hybridz is content to keep churning out an outfit that relies on a pretty *big* – and frequently noticeable – invisiprim rather than provide a more ergonomic solution via the use of an Alpha Mask.
Similarly, Hybridz make much of their take on the MLP V2 animation engine and poses contained in products such as the Hybridz beds. But again, the fact remains that there is little to differentiate the “Hybridz system” from the wide range of MLP2-driven systems available from both BDSM and non-BDSM content creators. Further, in the case of the latter (accepting the fact their items are not “latex” in nature) the majority of beds, etc., utilising the MLP2 / Xpose represent far greater value for money than the Hybridz items because they tend to be far more ergonomic in terms of both design and presentation.
A personal disappointment element about Hybridz is that many of the designs come across as “lifts” from copyrighted artwork on the net. Two examples of this are the “Latex Alien Girl” outfit, the artwork for which appears to have been largely “borrowed” from the works of Chio – in term of the pose used in the vendor picture -, and the “Latex Sub Suit”, which appears to be a direct “lift” of a computer-generated piece of artwork dating to 1998 by the fetish artist Christopher.
In fairness, it should be said that Hybridz are not alone in this, and nor is the practice restricted to those in the BDSM trade. While I personally have no issues with inspiration being drawn from real life (as opposed to direct ripping), it would be nice to see anycontent creator who has clearly and obviously done give due credit to the source of their inspiration, be it a drawing, a model, a real-world house or whatever. Given that Hybridz have chosen to use the work of artists who have enjoyed high profiles in the fetish / BDSM community the world over, it is sad that they have chosen not to give proper credit.
After-sales service at Hybridz tends to leave something of a bad taste in one’s mouth as well. Despite her own self-promotion in the customer services stakes, dealing with the store’s proprietor, Fyre Furse can be akin to having one’s teeth pulled.
There was a time when Hybridz represented “fun” items and reasonable value for money; but those days has long since faded into the past. The overall lack of innovation in either design or capabilities of the product range means that, with perhaps one or two exceptions, Hybridz products have exceeded their shelf-life when compared with the offerings of more imaginative BDSM content creators who strive to maintain relevance with evolving capabilities with SL.