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color accent Getting Started -- Glenn Sanders, Community Director - updated: Oct. 29, 2010  

Updated for BETA 2.0! to be released in the early morning of Oct. 29!

Video Tutorials
Getting Started -- by Jasmine
How to Move Your Avatar -- by Jasmine   Updated!
New Camera Controls -- by Jasmine   New!
Clothing, Skins and Avatar Bodies -- by Jasmine
Face Painting 101 -- by Marlii Revolucion
How to play the Waterfall Game -- by Skribe Forti

Display Resolution
We recommend a Windows display resolution of at least 1280x768 or higher.
Tip: Adjust your computer's display resolution before you run Blue Mars.

View in Full Screen
Press the ALT key then tap the Enter key to start Full Screen mode.
Press ALT + Enter again to exit full screen mode.

"Very High" Rendering Quality (enables depth of field, motion blur and parallax occlusion)
Click the wrench icon to open the Options panel.
In the Display Menu, Choose Very High Rendering Quality.
Note: This setting is only recommended for fast computers with high-end video cards.

Log Out / Quit / Exit from Blue Mars
Click the Logout icon on the right end of the toolbar. Then click Yes.

To view to this Tutorial
Click the [?] icon in the toolbar of most Blue Mars windows.

color accent Using the Places Browser   ^ TOP 

After you log in to Blue Mars, you will see the Places Browser, with buttons for each destination.

Visit the Welcome Area
Click the Welcome Area button.
Then click the Go link on the lower right of the screen.

Visit a City for the first time (downloading a City)
1) Click the button for the City you want to visit.
2) Click the Download link at the top right of the window.
3) After the City downloads, Click the Refresh link.
4) Click the City to select it.
5) Then click the Go link on the lower right of the window to visit the City.

Visit a City after you download it
1) Click the button for the City you want to visit.
2) Then click the Go link on the lower right of the window to visit the City. That's it!

When a City is Updated   - Updated info!
We update the Cities frequently, when the developer uploads new content. When this happens, you will see Updated in the Places Browser with the date of the update.. Download the updated City, then click the Refresh link to visit it.

To return to the Places Browser
Click the Home icon in the toolbar.

color accent Getting Around in Blue Mars   ^ TOP 

How to Move: 3 Ways to Walk (details are on the wiki)   - Updated!
1. Point and click. Click the ground where you want to walk.

2. Use the WASD keys or the Arrow keys to move and turn your avatar. Note: You need to right-click outside of the chat box first.

3. Press both mouse buttons to walk. (Press and hold the right mouse button, while you also press your left mouse button.) NEW!
Note: You need to be in Default mode to use both mouse buttons:   Options menu > Controls > Avatar Controls > Default > click OK

Turn your Avatar: 2 Ways to Turn (details are on the wiki)
a. Use the left or right arrow keys to turn your avatar.
b. Right click and move your mouse. Your avatar will turn to face that direction. NEW!
Tip: To view your avatar's face, click the right mouse button and move the mouse left or right to rotate the cam without rotating your avatar.

Run in Blue Mars: Tap the R key to toggle "always run" mode on or off.

Turn Off the Blue Cone When You Walk
Click the Wrench icon in the Toolbar to open the Options menu.
Click Controls on the Side Menu.
Click Off for the Pointer.

Turn Off the Sound When You Click to Walk
Click the Wrench icon in the Toolbar to open the Options menu.
Click Sound on the Side Menu.
Click Off for the Pointer Click Sound.

color accent Looking Around in Blue Mars   ^ TOP 

Basic Camera Controls
Rotate: Right-click and drag your mouse to rotate the view.
Map view: Tap the M key to toggle the Map view.
Your avatar will turn when you rotate the view, if you use the Default movement control in the Options menu.

Free Camera Controls (details are on the wiki)
Rotate around a point: Press and hold the Alt key, then move your mouse.
Zoom the view: Press and hold the Alt key and the Left mouse button, then move your mouse up, down, left or right to pan the view.
Pan the view: Press and hold the Alt key and the Right mouse button, then move your mouse up, down, left or right to pan the view.
Camera Altitude: Press and hold the Alt key and Both mouse buttons, then move your mouse up or down to pan the view.
Tip: Camera movement is limited to your initial cam zoom distance. Zoom out before you use cam controls for a wider range.

Note: To escape from Free Camera mode, press the Esc key!

Camera Zoom
Use the scroll button on your mouse to scroll through the camera zoom settings.
Tip: Click the camera icon in the Toolbar to toggle through 12 zoom settings.

Turn On "Camera Follow" (the camera turns when your avatar turns)
Click the Wrench in the Toolbar Menu (or tap CTRL + O) to open the Options Menu.
In the Options Menu, click the Camera tab on the left side.
Select ON or OFF.

Note: Camera Follow is set to OFF by default.
Tip: Use your keyboard arrows to move with Camera Follow on for smoother movement.

Hide the User Interface (UI)
Right-click the main window to focus outside the chat window.
Press the Ctrl+H keys to hide the UI.
To restore the UI, press the Ctrl+H keys again.
Tip: To restore the Chat window, tap the C key.

Hide or Move the Tool Bar
Hide it: Click the top border of the Tool Bar to minimize it or show it.
Move it: Click the top border and drag it to top, left or right. Then click again to set the position.

color accent Chat and Private Messages   ^ TOP 

To Chat
Type your message in the Chat box in the lower left corner of the Blue Mars window.
Hit the Enter key to post your message.

To Minimize the Chat window
Click the minus sign ( - ) on the top right corner of the chat box.

To Display the Chat window (after you close it)
Click the Chat icon on the left end of the Tool Bar.
Tip: You can tap the C key to display the chat window.

Send a Private Message to another member
Right click the person's avatar. Then click the Private Message icon on the left of the Avatar menu.

Send a Private Message to a Friend:
1) Click the Friends list icon. (Wait a few seconds until the list opens.)
2) Click the name of a friend in your list.
3) Then click Send Message.

Offline messages: You can send a private message even when your friend is offline.

Group Private Messaging
Click the Friends list icon. Wait a few seconds until the list opens.
Click the name of a friend in your list. Then click Send Message.
Click and drag the name of another friend into your PM Window to add that Friend to the Chat.
Note: You will see the names of everyone participating in the Conversation in a tab on the Right side of the PM Window.

Resize the Chat Window
Drag the chat window up.
Then drag the lower right corner to resize the window.

Change Chat Bubble Color
Options menu > Chat Bubble > Bubble Color > choose a color > click OK to save your choice.

color accent Voice Chat!   ^ TOP 

Tip: Use a headset to avoid feedback.
Voice chat Sound is ON by default.
Voice chat Microphone is OFF by default.
A red dot will appear over the head of avatars who are speaking.

Turn Voice Chat Off or Change Options
Click the Wrench icon in the Toolbar (or tap CTRL + O), to open the Options Menu.
Click the Voice tab in the Options Menu.
Use the ON and OFF buttons to turn Voice Chat On or Off.
Use the Speaker volume to control the volume of voice chat.

Turn your Microphone ON or OFF
In the Options menu, set your Microphone volume to about 50% to TURN ON your microphone.
Set your Microphone volume to zero to TURN OFF your microphone.

NEW! Mute and Unmute your Mic
Click the red button in the chat window to unmute your microphone .
Click the red button again to mute your microphone.

Mute Another Member
Right-click the avatar you want to mute.
In the right-click menu, choose Mute.

Troubleshooting Voice
Voice problems? See the Vivox voice troubleshooting page.

NOTE: This is an early version of Voice Chat in Blue Mars.  In future versions we will add easier volume controls, possibly private voice chat and more...

color accent Animations, and Interacting with Other Avatars   ^ TOP 

To Dance or do another Action   - Updated!
Right-click your avatar.
Click the Emote (face) icon on the left of your avatar menu.
Select the action you want to do. Then click Continue.

To Interact with another avatar
  - Updated!
Right-click the other avatar.
Click Interact icon.
Select the Action you want to do. Then click Continue.

To send a Friend Request   - Updated!
Right-click your friend's avatar.
Click the Add Friend icon to invite them to become your friend.

To Trigger Animations in the Chatbox
You can trigger many animations by typing in the Chatbox. Type a slash, then the name of the animation, for example:

  /dance #2
  /dance #3

What other animations can you discover? Hint: click the Animations icon in the toolbar to open the Animations window. You can find many animations here.

color accent Customizing your Look   ^ TOP 

To apply Cosmetics or add a Beard
Click the Face icon in the Toolbar.
Make the changes you want.
You can click "Undo" to undo the last change.
You can click "Reset" to start over.
Click the "Close" button when you are finished.

Save your Cosmetic Settings
Click the Face icon in the Toolbar.
Make your cosmetic changes.
Click Export and type a name for your file.
Click Save.

Import your saved Cosmetic Settings
Note: Be sure to save your current Cosmetics before you Import a saved one, or your existing Cosmetics will be lost.
Click the Face icon in the Toolbar.
Click the Import button.
Select the file you want to Import.
Click Open to apply the settings.
Click Close to exit the menu.

To Change Clothes or Hair
Click the Clothes icon (shirt) in the Toolbar.
Click the appropriate button to select your new clothes or hair.
Click the Cancel button to undo the changes you made and exit the inventory.
Click the Done button to confirm the change.

To Customize your Face
Visit the Welcome Area in Blue Mars.
Click the Face Customization sign (behind you when you arrive).
Edit your face, then click the Done button.

To Edit your default animations
Click the Animation icon in the Toolbar.
Click the drop-down menu.
Select which animation you want to use
Click Done to save the changes, or Cancel to exit without saving.

color accent New!  Avatar Menu   ^ TOP 

Your Right-click Menu
Right click your avatar to display your avatar menu.
Your avatar appears in high resolution.
Your BLU$ balance is displayed on the top right.

Profile and Icons
Profile: You can edit your First Name and Last Name. Be sure to click Save Profile to save your changes.
Icons on the left: Go to Favorite City, Emote, Buy BLU$, Report a Bug, or check out our Events page.
Icons on the top: Control your Residences, and access your Profile.

color accent New!  Blinks (web hyperlinks)!   ^ TOP 

Blinks are web hyperlinks to destinations in Blue Mars!
Click a Blink, and your Blue Mars client starts, and takes you to that City.  Try it now on our updated website!
You will be prompted If you need to download the City.
Blink syntax:  for example:
For more details about creating and using Blinks, visit the Blinks page on our wiki.

color accent New!  Homes! (your home in Blue Mars)   ^ TOP 

Now you can live in Blue Mars!
Visit our Real Estate page to find your affordable new home today.

Manage your Residence!
In Blue Mars, right-click your avatar to open the avatar menu.
Click the Residences icon at the top of the avatar menu.
From there you can: lock or unlock your Residence, add roomates, pay rent, or (heaven forbid) terminate your lease.
Developers, learn more about residences in our Managing Property tutorial pages.

Manage your Furniture!
Learn how to access your furniture inventory on the House Inventory page on our wiki.

Decorate your Home!
Learn how to place and move furniture in your home on the Interior Decoration page on our wiki.

color accent Buying and Wearing Clothes   ^ TOP 

Try On Items Before You Buy
Click an item in a shop.
Click the Try On button in the purchase window to see the item on your avatar before you buy it.

Try Buy an Item
Click an item in a shop.
Rotate the item view: click and drag the Right mouse button.
Zoom the item: click and drag the Left mouse button.
Click the BUY button to purchase the item.

Transfer BLU$ from your Developer Account
If you need more BLU$, you can transfer some BLU$ from your developer account, if available.
Click the Transfer Dev BLU$ button.
Type the amount of BLU$ you want to transfer.
Click the Next button.
Click the Transfer Dev BLU$ button.
Note: This transfer cannot be reversed.
You can cancel by clicking the Cancel Transfer button.

color accent Buying BLU$   ^ TOP 

Click the Buy BLU$ Button on the UI Toolbar. This will open up a Flash Window.
Select the Amount of BLU$ you wish to purchase.
Select Payment Type. We accept All major Credit Cards, Paypal, Amazon, etc.
Type your Payment data.
Click Next.
Type your Billing address.
Click the Buy Now button.

color accent Waterfall Ring Game   ^ TOP 

To move your hovercraft in the Waterfall Ring Game
Space = Up
Ctrl = Down
W = forward
S = backward
A = go Left
D = go Right
Move the mouse to steer.

Tip: You can also use the Arrow keys to move.

color accent New Venice (Venezia)   ^ TOP 

Flying in New Venice
Tap the F3 key to fly.
Use the WASD keys or Arrow keys to move.
Tap the Q key to land where your camera is pointing.

color accent Troubleshooting   ^ TOP 

Slow Response /Lag
The main factors that affect speed in Blue Mars are your video card and computer speed. If you have a slow response in Blue Mars, it is likely due to an older video card or relatively slow computer.

After you download a City, all of the content is on your computer. So the main content being streamed over the internet is chat text, and the position data for avatars and other moving entities. All of the rendering and processing is done on your computer.

To speed up Blue Mars:
 • Reduce the Blue Mars window size: Click the wrench icon to open Options. Then select a smaller screen resolution.
 • Reduce the rendering quality: Click the wrench icon to open Options, then select the Low setting in Render Quality.
 • Update your video card drivers.
 • Close other large programs you may have running.

Troubleshooting Voice
Voice problems? Vivox voice troubleshooting page.

If you do not see the Places Browser
You are using the developer version of the client.
The developer version of the client is for testing and does not include any Cities or the Places Browser.
To visit the Cities, you need to download the Blue Mars Client from

Display or Mouse Problems
We recommend a display resolution of at least 1280x768 or higher.
Please adjust your display resolution before you run Blue Mars.

Need more help?

• First, search our FAQ (frequently asked questions).
• Then search the Blue Mars Forum.
• If you don't find an answer there, post your question in the Technical Support section of our member Forum.
• Visit our HelpDesk at


Help > Tutorials

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