Josh Greenberg ‘20
Originally launched on October 24, 2005, Club Penguin immediately captured the hearts of those who began to explore the island’s numerous activities, shops, and secrets. It became a major aspect of many childhoods and was dearly missed after being discontinued on March 30, 2017, in favor of Club Penguin Island. This successor was momentarily forgotten but now has received a sudden influx of players due to the Coronavirus pandemic and quarantine orders in effect across the country.
Club Penguin’s numerous recreations included Club Penguin Rewritten and Club Penguin Island, but they failed to deliver the same carefree and enjoyable gameplay that the original version offered. Disney’s acquisition of the game forced it to follow the undeserving path that most mobile games end up on; Club Penguin pushed for in-app purchases and received monthly updates. The update part sounded okay until you realized that they were merely advertisements for Disney’s other assets like Marvel and Star Wars.
It would not be fair to judge the game based on what it had become with the advent of an inevitable shift. The majority of Club Penguin’s history was positive, with many reminiscing about their former pursuits in the game. “I can say that I was definitely the king of sled racing. It felt good to get back into the game and think about how much time I dedicated to practicing just that,” said Joshua Greenberg ‘20. Greenberg liked how the game’s players were all friendly and out to have a good time. “They were much less toxic than the kids on FPS and sports games,” said Greenberg.
Others found the game to be a refreshing take on role-playing games. “I got tired of finding apples and delivering letters to NPCS [non-player characters] in games like World of Warcraft. Club Penguin’s side missions don’t even feel like work. I could jet pack wherever and cook pizzas whenever,” said Maya Ghosh ‘20. “It’s relaxing to have everyone just hop on their computers and fight as card-jitsu master penguins for a bit.”
This game clearly had the fundamental aspects of an MMORPG [massively multiplayer online role-playing game]. Players were free to do whatever they wanted to do with their time. “In addition to my sled racing, I was a Puffle collector. I won enough coins from sled racing to buy all of the expensive and cool looking ones,” said Greenberg. Maya preferred to upgrade her igloo and fill it up with all the exotic and unrelated things that one would not expect to find in such a structure.
“I’m pretty happy that I decided to come back to Club Penguin. It was like a full-circle kind of moment where you’ve realized that you’ve grown up, but the same old things still give you comfort,” said Ghosh.
“In addition to my sled racing, I was a Puffle collector. I won enough coins from sled racing to buy all of the expensive and cool looking ones,” said Joshua Greenberg ‘20.