Thoughts on Waiting for Poptropica Worlds

popworlds

Hey Poptropicans! This post is going to be a long one, so hang in there – it’s out of this world. 😉

Let’s talk about Poptropica Worlds. For those of you who have missed the memo, Pop Worlds is the massive overhaul project formerly referred to by the community as New Poptropica – the complete re-designing of Poptropica as we know it. It was officially announced on the Creators’ Blog in April of last year, where it was advertised to launch “later [that] year.”

new-pop

Well, it’s early 2017, and we know that didn’t happen. However, we did get the trailer video last month, where the name Poptropica Worlds was announced, along with a new release time frame: spring 2017! You can check out the trailer below:

Let’s not deny that it has been a long time coming, though; even longer than expected. The frustrating part, as many Poptropicans can attest to, is not getting many updates on its progress (sneak peeks and the like). But if you’re reading this, it means you’ve held on for all this time, keeping the spirit of Poptropica alive. And that’s pretty awesome.

Waiting isn’t easy, but it’s given us some things to think about. Let’s get into the big questions.

Is Poptropica “dying”?

2016 was a very different year for Poptropica, in terms of production. As you may recall from our 2016 Rewind, there were events and updates here and there, but barely any new islands – the only one was Monkey Wrench, the tutorial for new players, which doesn’t really constitute a full island.

And so, understandably, there have been concerns from Poptropicans all over the community that the game is “dying.” That the only thing keeping it alive is the fandom community. These are legitimate concerns. We’re used to getting a new island every couple of months, as we have been for years, and Poptropicans were not prepared for the dry spell we’ve been having.

But: not all is lost. It’s true that a lot of the activity is kept up by the community, the players like you and I. Many Pop bloggers have been active in Poptropica-inspired fan projects and pursuits, and the PHB is no exception: we’ve averaged about a post a day (sometimes more) in the past year (just look at our archives in the sidebar). Poptropica has been busy in their other endeavors as well, even putting on a couple of contests for the fans as well as releasing books and other little updates.

Sometimes, in the midst of “lame” updates, we forget that we actually are waiting for something, that the New Poptropica is and has been in development all this time. Even though we’ve gotten only a few glimpses of what’s to come, let’s not lose sight of the future ahead. Something bigger is coming.

Even as we wait, Poptropica is not dying. Poptropica is building a new kingdom behind-the-scenes, and it’s almost time for us to step into it. Are we ready?

Here’s another question to think about…

How is Poptropica doing in relation to other kids’ virtual worlds?

Poptropica is a pretty big enterprise, and it’s easy to dismiss the slowed signs of activity as a signal of its impending doom. But for almost a decade, Poptropica has done pretty well for themselves – they’ve achieved the ever-elusive “success.” Just think of the many other games, apps, and projects you’ve dabbled with for a period of time, only for them to fade from memory and use. So, for all that it is, it’s pretty impressive that Poptropica has stayed afloat for over 9 years.

Some of you may have heard about the imminent closure of another popular virtual world: Club Penguin. Well, closure isn’t fully accurate. But they are shutting down the desktop and app worlds in favor of a new, mobile-only game: Club Penguin Island.

You read that right: Island. Like Poptropica Islands! It’s funny that they’re embracing this term just as Poptropica is choosing a new one (Worlds).Poptropica blogger Tall Cactus noted the similarity on her blog as well. Could they even be trying to rub off on Poptropica’s success with one buzzword? This is only a speculation, but the possibility is there.

As Club Penguin enters this new stage of existence after 11 years online, so Poptropica approaches its 10th anniversary this coming September. The official Poptropica Twitter (and an ex-Creator, Director D aka @JamesDLema) has even acknowledged the big news from their competitor:

Friendly reminder that, unlike Club Penguin, Poptropica is keeping its original game even after the launch of the new one. So you don’t have to worry about losing everything you’ve built just yet – and that’s a good thing. We’re going to need to ease into the big transition.

Speaking of kids’ sites, Poptropica’s social media person (though on a personal Twitter handle), Jessica (Skinny Moon) gave a shout-out to ex-Creator Director D’s latest endeavor, Lego Life:

Might catch your interest if you’re into Lego and social media! It’s brand new, and that’s the thing: Creators keep creating. Who knows how long it’ll be before it takes on a new form?

What next?: Our Hopes, Concerns, and a Call to the Creators

So now what? How do we keep our patience from running thin?

First, we remember that Poptropica Worlds is still in development, has been for at least the past year, and will soon be here. We remember that Poptropica is creating something totally cool for our interests.

Then we recognize that Poptropica has come a long way, has already delivered on many amazing islands and other events, and still has a bright future ahead with the development of a massive upgrade.

And then, of course, we hope for the best. Spring is right around the corner – you know, once we get through this winter. If all goes according to plan (and it would be embarrassing to backtrack on a release date a second time), we should be playing Poptropica Worlds sometime soon.

shoeAnimate

Now let’s address perhaps the biggest concern we’ve had during this whole waiting business: Poptropica’s silence. Their commitment to keeping development and progress reports under wraps for the most part did not bode well for many Poptropica fans.

Dear Poptropica Creators, it’s understandable that you don’t want to give too much away and spoil the fun, but if you’re going to keep us waiting for this long, you need to give your fans something more to hold onto than the same old lines about not revealing anything. Where are the sneak peeks? The progress updates? Is a little tease every once in a while too much to ask?

When it turned out that you could not make the release in the timeframe you had promised, why did you not acknowledge it? Many of us were left disappointed (though some of us unsurprised) when 2016 rolled away and New Poptropica did not arrive. Why didn’t you say something? Why did you keep our hopes up and wait for them to be dashed without a word?

Remember this holiday post on the Creators’ Blog, and the speculation it brought over the ambiguous but hugely suggestive wording – that we might finally get a New Pop update?

pcb-stay-tuned

And how, we waited for the remaining week of the 2016 year, hoping for something with each passing day? What did we get? Two updates to the #MyPoptropicaCostume contest, and on the last day of the year finally delivering on… the behind-the-scenes look for an Island of the Month, promised since the beginning of the month. Don’t get me wrong, these were good things, but the fact remains that Poptropica chose to stay silent on the biggest matter of them all: New Poptropica.

Can you feel the disappointment?

So this is the call for Poptropica’s Creators: If you value your fans, listen to them. Address their yearning and give them something new to hope for, a little taste for what’s in the works. Don’t be silent.

Start now. We’ve still got a while before we’ll actually get to play the new Worlds. In this long interlude, it would’ve be nice to see more than a monster worm (cool as that is), two frames of an animated rat in the not-Daily Pop, and leaks we’ve had to go and find on our own.

Thanks for making it through this lengthy post, and I hope it’s given you some food for thought.

Creators, you’re awesome for working hard to bring Poptropica Worlds to life – just remember who’s playing the game. Poptropicans, you’re awesome for sticking it through a year of no new islands – so keep going, and of course, stay popping. 😉

All good things,

– slantedfish –

Update: Poptropica left a comment on this post saying the following:

Hi Poptropicans! Slanted Fish, thanks for writing this post! As I said in the FAQ post comments, there hasn’t been much to share because we’ve been building Poptropica Worlds from scratch. All the back-end work has to come before actual Island development, and then the beginning parts of Island development don’t have anything visual — so that’s why there hasn’t been anything to show for a long time. You’ll get peeks when we have peeks to show, and that should be in the near future!

As for that end of 2016 blog post where we said there would be some “very interesting stuff on the blog” the next week — I was referring to the post about having 12 instead of 2 winners in the art contest, and the post about Poptropica Worlds. The PW post got delayed for a few reasons, unfortunately. We didn’t mean to be silent at the end of the year, but sometimes in game development, unforeseen things happen!

Poptropica Worlds is going to be awesome and we’re so excited to debut it this Spring. I wish I could tell you more, but what I’ve seen is really, really cool. 😀

Thanks for the response, Skinny Moon! 🌙

Advertisements

47 thoughts on “Thoughts on Waiting for Poptropica Worlds

  1. Lucky Wing says:

    I agree! Pop isn’t dying! And so help me off it does die, j will still play it! I will illegally recreate the game if nessisary!
    Wait, Lego? I need to go check that!

    Squirrel.

  2. Magic Snowball says:

    I don’t think Pop is dying… at least not yet. But I agree with you, Fishy. We need more news on Worlds! And I’ve been aware of Club Penguin losing its success… sad, I used to play that game all the time 😦

    • Slanted Fish says:

      Yup, I do think we should have gotten more consistent updates about Poptropica Worlds for the reasons I mentioned.

      The Club Penguin thing is sad (though it also brings hope in the form of its new mobile game), and it’s interesting to note that Poptropica is doing something similar (making a reboot of its game) but also different (keeping the old one and keeping the desktop version).

      • Magic Snowball says:

        True. Club Penguin was my childhood though :(. I was pretty much obsessed with that game… Oh well. At least Poptropica is keeping their original game.

  3. smartpoptropica says:

    I agree with everything Slanted Fish said. The fact of the matter, many people joined Discord throughout the course of 2016, some of us because of New Pop (Like me). Now when Poptropica in general was just silent, Most chats, while still having a Poptropica channel, weren’t as much Poptropica before. We only saw a glimpse of that, with the release of the video. I think this is because Poptropica gave us nothing to talk about. I don’t Poptropica is dying, but and update could help prevent that.

  4. greedyshadow says:

    Definitely agreed. But I am not going back to Club Penguin no matter what just to get a pin, background, and a hat in every party I go to.

    • Starving Cereal (SC) says:

      Really though,those bunny slippers will be the only shoes I’ll wear once Worlds comes out.

      I’m disappointed that they didn’t make Poptropica into Poptropica Worlds. As in,make it an update instead of a whole new game.

    • Slanted Fish says:

      Well, now’s a good time as any for sending in a MPIP. 😉

      Not updating the whole game all at once could be a good thing – at least it’ll give players the option to play one or the other, which would be particularly useful when they’re still trying to get used to the newer version.

  5. T.T.P.O.T.T.P.F says:

    Isn’t there a single patient person left? (Yes, me, I’m so humble.) If it’s taking this long, and they’re staying silent, it would imply that they’re working very hard to get it right and they want some of its elements to remain a surprise.

    • Slanted Fish says:

      I’m aware of that, and did acknowledge those reasons, as you may have seen in the post. This isn’t about our impatience nor is it demanding that they hurry up and release the game already. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to ask that they not be as silent as they have been, and I would suggest going over the post again if you missed this point.

  6. tallmeloniscool says:

    FInally very interesting blog post from the PHB. Man I agree with everything you say slanded fish! The Poptropica creators need to say something about this post. Also in my opinionin order for Poptropica worlds to be good I think the best way for poptropica worlds to be good is by adding things that fans want! Like take this for example https://poptropicahelp.net/2017/01/04/pop5-features-friends/ and this https://poptropicahelp.net/2016/12/08/pop5-features-newpop/ if the potpropica creators add most of the features listed in the links to Poptropica worlds then and also be alot more active with the Poptropica fanbase then yeah Poptropica worlds is going to be great!

    • Slanted Fish says:

      There have been some cool ideas suggested by fans, as you’ve noted, but whether or not they come with the release of Poptropica Worlds does not necessarily have to define how good the new game is. The Creators have probably come up with some also-cool ideas that we don’t know about yet, and we’ll have to wait and see what those are. 😉

      • tallmeloniscool says:

        Yeah he will have to wait and see soon 🙂 Also yeah I think the Poptropica creators need to be more active with there fans like replying in the PHB posts,going on discord more,and sneak peaks plz!

      • Starving Cereal (SC) says:

        If anything,they’ve been the most active recently on social media ever. I remember before Skinny Moon joined,it was a rarity to even get a reference from the Creators. A huge honour,if you will. Now they’re extremely active,which makes them not responding to this all the more surprising.

  7. Poptropica Creators (@Poptropica) says:

    Hi Poptropicans! Slanted Fish, thanks for writing this post! As I said in the FAQ post comments, there hasn’t been much to share because we’ve been building Poptropica Worlds from scratch. All the back-end work has to come before actual Island development, and then the beginning parts of Island development don’t have anything visual — so that’s why there hasn’t been anything to show for a long time. You’ll get peeks when we have peeks to show, and that should be in the near future!

    As for that end of 2016 blog post where we said there would be some “very interesting stuff on the blog” the next week — I was referring to the post about having 12 instead of 2 winners in the art contest, and the post about Poptropica Worlds. The PW post got delayed for a few reasons, unfortunately. We didn’t mean to be silent at the end of the year, but sometimes in game development, unforeseen things happen!

    Poptropica Worlds is going to be awesome and we’re so excited to debut it this Spring. I wish I could tell you more, but what I’ve seen is really, really cool. 😃

    • Slanted Fish says:

      Ah, thanks for clarifying that. We were hoping for more visual peeks, and even some preliminary sketches would be cool to see, if there are any to show.

      Yeah, the wording about “very interesting stuff on the blog” made it sound like it would be about Poptropica Worlds, and getting just the art contest update didn’t feel like it qualified as “very interesting,” hence people’s disappointment. Even a little paragraph about wanting to say more about New Poptropica but having some delays would’ve eased our minds a little. But, at least the news was out eventually. 😛

      Will take your word for it that it’s going to be really cool. Definitely looking forward to it!

  8. Fierce Sponge says:

    so exited!!!! Hope it will be safer and funner than the last. The first was great. When I heard about it, I thought it was any old game. Now, I can’t stop playing it. The creators of Poptropica are fantastic. Thank you Thank you soooo much!! It sounds very perfect now wait till I play it. Everything about poptropica sounds great and when you play it it is ….. AWESOME!!

What's popping, Poptropicans?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s