You: The view is great from up here!
First post of 2016! I'm going to kick the year off with an exciting start by showing off some evidence and sneak peeks, relating to an upcoming overhaul of the Home/Tutorial island on Poptropica! And it's quite a big update.
First of all, a lot of recent sneak peeks starting from mid-November of last year have some surprising similarities: they all hint at some sort of large ship. In the first one, you see the distinctive style of Home Island: the building in the foreground hovering on rocks above an ocean full of Poptropica Islands below.
From these, it looks like there's soon going to be a ship-themed update to the Home island. Instead of the current version with shops spaced out on a street, the new one will be a large ship with doors to various shops and interactive things pertaining to your Poptropican. Cool!
Looking at the last two, it seems like your Island Medallions will be showcased in a room on Home Island as well, rather than on the Friends page as they are right now. This brings up a lot of interesting possibilities: will everything eventually be converted from its place on the classic Home screen (like Friends and the Daily Pop) to rooms on Home Island? Maybe Friends could even become a sort of common room!
But it gets even better. Poking around in the unreleased files of Home Island, I found these highly interesting scenes and schematics which (partially) confirm my theories:
This first image is a preliminary look at what the Main Street of the new Home Island will look like; apparently it'll be called "Skydock." The buildings in this image will lead to the rooms below (click to view full size):
These are actually scenes by the Creators that are in the earliest stages. Even though they're mainly just line drawings and text on a black background, the descriptions are already getting me excited for the update :). It looks like the Creators are planning a lot of creative additions to Home Island this year.
Another thing that I found while looking at the code for Home Island, is that these rooms (Skydock, Town Hall, and Saloon) might even be common rooms! That's right, you might be able to chat, friend, and battle with other players while also enjoying Home Island. Now I'm not 100% sure if that's true based on the code, but it would be a reasonable enough assumption ;)
It looks like the Creators themselves are still working out the details though, like for instance how the rooms will look like and how they'll be connected, so the final product may be different from what I've outlined here. But so far this looks like the gist of it. And I'm definitely looking forward to this huge update!
Ever wondered why exactly the medallion shards are scattered all over the place when you play the Tutorial, and why there's a pilot there talking to you? Well, another update to Home Island (that might be coming sooner than the ship-related one) gives the backstory to that. This dialog file shows what seems to be you talking with the pilot while you're both up in the blimp:
Then the pilot offers you a choice to either do the medallion-shard-finding tutorial or to go to Home. So basically, the medallion is in pieces down there because the Pilot dropped it from his own balloon. Interesting backstory.
Anyway, those are all the exclusive Home Island sneak peeks that I've got so far! Looks like the upcoming update is full of fun new things to do or to just enjoy looking at. The Creators haven't officially announced it yet (though they did give hints of it in their New Year's post), so we don't know when it's coming. But it sure is something grand to look forward to :)
Wow, hard to believe that 2015 is almost over already! This year, Poptropica turned 8 years old, released 7 new islands (including finishing off the last episodic islands of 2014, Arabian Nights and PoptropiCon), gave Poptropica Realms to all of us, improved the Poptropica app, became poised to expand to new types of media (like comic books and hopefully TV as well!), and so much more! Here's Poptrickia's review of all of 2015, the good, the bad, and the ugly (well, very little ugly):
A surprising total of 3 sponsored islands were released this year: Galactic Hot Dogs, Mystery of the Map, and Timmy Failure. Interestingly, all three were based on comic books (Mystery of the Map was based on Poptropica's own comic book series of the same name). Add this to the fact that Poptropica's been closely tied with Funbrain in the past, and you can see that a lot of Poptropica's target demographic is heavily interested in comics and reading, which probably influences how even their original islands are developed.
As for the islands themselves, the reactions were fairly the same for each: good art and music, but weak storyline. Galactic Hot Dogs in particular got called out for its laughably easy gameplay.
Although by now, all indications are that Poptropica is recovering well. The Creators kind of paid us back in their own way with the many giveaways of Credits this year (e.g. tripling the amount of credits given for winning islands, all the freebies leading up to Timmy Failure Island, and the Daily Pop-in Prizes). Credits can't buy Early Access to new and locked islands anymore (not since 2010 I think), but they do give non-Members much more access to the Store (which Members can just borrow infinite items from).
And finally to finish off 2015 on a high note, the incredible and original Escape from Pelican Rock Island recently came out for all players after what must have been the shortest Early Access period of all time: a mere three weeks! I gave it a review that you can read in detail, but suffice it to say that Poptropica has set a new bar for the quality of the storyline, music, and general development of their future original islands :)
Last but not least, the mobile app got quite a few upgrades that brought it close to the quality of the desktop version, including many multiplayer features and importing desktop looks. No logging in has been implemented yet, though, and islands no longer cost money, so it looks like the app is going to be free for all. And Poptropica Realms has also come along quite well, adding many immersive features as well as sharing.
The post doesn't end here -- click Read More below to see more New Year's stuff!
Check out what my little sister made and gifted to me today: a Poptrickia mug! It says "POPTRICKIA" wrapped around it in blue block print, with pink Dr. Hare ears on the P and a top hat on the C (somewhat of an inside joke). Flowering out from the bottom is a very detailed Poptropica-vine-esque pattern. The handle even says "Since 2011" on it, the year I founded Poptrickia! Here's a 3D photo of it that you can click and drag:
She says she actually drew the design herself with ceramic markers onto the mug and then baked it in the oven :). Easily the coolest present I've gotten this year! We're even considering finding a way to produce these for a much lower cost and then sell them to our friends, maybe (big maybe) even on the Internet. What about you guys, any cool surprise Poptropica-related gifts this year?
By the way, check out the recap of 2015 that the Creators posted on the Blog, it's amazing how quickly this whole year seemed to fly by. Until my next post (soon, my friends)... Happy holidays!
Hello Poptropicans! Enjoying Pelican Rock Island this past week so far? It's coming out later this month on the desktop version for everyone, and non-Members can already play it on the app. I'm actually impressed with it, against my first expectations, so here are my brief thoughts on the island...
One of the first things that struck me this island was the high attention to detail, in the art and soundtrack, that I felt were missing from some of the more recent islands, especially Timmy Failure, Mystery of the Map, and Galactic Hot Dogs. The soundtrack and original music were well-mixed and matched the atmosphere perfectly.
Although the consistently drab colors dampen the mood after you've been playing for a while, they are appropriate for the atmosphere of the prison, so there. Even the outdoor rec yard manages to have a gloomy air somehow :).
This is the first time Poptropica really went into a prison setting in such detail and realism; previous prisons in Poptropica were mainly jokes that either set up some part of the plot (Super Villain, Ghost Story) or were simply very easy to get out of (Super Power, Wild West, etc). The story of Pelican Rock was all focused on that.
The story itself was somewhat unoriginal: you're framed for a crime, thrown in prison, and team up with your fellow inmates to break out under the prison guards' noses and clear your name. However, that's not to say it wasn't executed well, which it sure was! All the different prison characters were fairly well-developed, with different personalities, and you even come to like Marion, Patches, Van Nostrand, and Flambe by the end of it.
I give it a 4.5/5. I'll admit it, I was pleasantly surprised. If you haven't played it yet, what are you waiting for? Make sure to check out the Island guide!
Before the post is out -- has anyone noticed Poptrickia's new profile picture on Twitter and YouTube? It's based on the site logo designed by HPuterpop that's been up on Poptrickia for a while.
What do you think? Eh? Comment if you like it! And expect another post from me before the year is out, having to do with some very interesting sneak peeks...
The written guide has been finished, and you can see it here. In the meantime, check out Captain Crawfish's walkthrough below! (remind me to do a grumbling post about the injustice of Creators releasing official walkthroughs before the year is out).
In other news, the Main Street preview for Pelican Rock Island is open to all Poptropicans. If you go to it from the map, you can explore the (still unfinished) Main Street of the upcoming island, and there are a number of free things you can get by walking left and talking to the characters, namely these two:
That dog's gotta be the funniest and most creative Follower ever in Poptropica :). And last but not least, if you go all the way right on the preview, you can check out the Photo Booth. This is just like the Photo Booth on the Home Island, but with prison-themed items and backgrounds. All this elaborate pre-Island hype, plus the Creators' promise that Pelican Rock is like no other island, is definitely getting me intrigued!
Quick interesting aside: many people aren't impressed with Poptropica's new homepage (well, it's almost a year old now, but it's new in relation to the 8 years of the game's history). Yes, it looks great aesthetically, but there's a lot more distracting clutter, links, and ads that you have to load and see before clicking on the Play Now button, which some older players don't like. But there's a way to get the old homepage back!
The following link takes you to a clutter-free "Poptropica Login" page almost like the classic main page. After you log in, things continue the way you're used to. It's at http://www.poptropica.com/play-poptropica.php I don't know how long it'll be here, but might as well bookmark it while it lasts!
If you haven't won the Hide & Seek yet, what are you waiting for? There's a new image and a new challenge up already, go check it out and give it a try! And if you're up for something more like this, check out the Stolen Snapshots game on my friend Slippery Raptor's blog; the format's similar, the games are harder :)
Ever wish there were even more ways to connect with the Poptropica community than Twitter? Well, now there is: HPuterpop and the Poptropica Help Blog team have recently released the new Poptropica subreddit! Older Poptropica players can post and comment on all things Poptropica over on r/poptropicahelp, so come join and help the forum grow!
Anyway, that's all for today! Enjoy the month of holidays, and I hope I'll get an opportunity to post more often; at least once before my traditional New Years' post. :)
First of all, sorry for the extended lack of new blog posts here on Poptrickia. The truth is that I was sick for a while, which put me behind in school, so I had to spend a lot of time catching up, and then the midterms rolled around so I was occupied studying. I always try to post regularly though, so please excuse the lateness!
The newest upcoming Poptropica island has been announced: Escape from Pelican Rock! For months we've been drooling over Daily Pop sneak peeks of scenes that appear to take place in a kind of prison, and now we've got this exciting plot:
(off-topic note: does anyone else think the music to the trailer seems a little off for the theme it's trying to convey? Perhaps it's just because I first heard that music on Mystery of the Map and I've got the tropical image stuck in my head, but eh). If you're hungering for some imagery from the island, check out the recent sneak peeks, starting from around August.
In addition, the Creators are giving away some cool free stuff in anticipation of the island's release. They've already put the Escapee Dr. Hare costume in the Store for Members (don't worry, we're unlikely to actually see Dr. Hare as a character on the island), and this Thursday all players will be able to get some more items. We don't know exactly what they will be, but the Creators have given this screenshot as a hint, so it may be something to do with the police dog shown in the picture:
Time willing, I may be able to get some even more top-secret sneak peeks directly from the Island's files later this week or next; not promising anything though! Moving away from that topic, also on Thursday, the Creators have announced that a World Champions map for Reality TV Island will be created! Not only that, first-time completions will give 200 credits rather than the usual 150. That should inspire some heavy competition :). Also, it's very important to note, that to get on the Champions map, you will most likely have to restart the island, not just play the game show again. Again, that's not confirmed yet, but it's likely.
Alright, that's all I've got for today! Enjoy the upcoming excitement of Escape from Pelican Rock, and I definitely hope to find time away from schoolwork to post more often!
For a long time, players have asked for the ability to log in to their online accounts from the app, thus having access to the same costumes, items, and Membership from the desktop. Granted, the Membership model doesn't work so well in the mobile app world as the in-app purchase model, so importing your costume is the next best thing! All you have to do on the app is make a new account and then enter your username and password from the online Poptropica (don't worry, it's safe to enter that info into the official Poptropica app). Soon, Android and iOS players will be able to do the same!
On a different note, it's October again! The month of Halloween, in case all your neighbors' gruesomely decorated houses didn't clue you in. The Creators have also gotten in on the spirit, with a bunch of new Halloween characters, props, and backdrops for a limited time only in the new Photo Booth. But there's hints of something more... as the latest Creators' Blog post says,
It might not be a bad idea to start practicing your Halloween photos in the Photo Booth. But perhaps we've said too much... for now.
So perhaps there is some sort of Halloween-themed Photo Booth competition coming up later this month!
Also this month, the Creators have been sharing previously unpublished concept art for some of Poptropica's creepier islands, like Monster Carnival, Ghost Story, Vampire's Curse, Great Pumpkin, and the Haunted House, on Twitter:
Insightful and detailed, aren't they? Bonus question: can you guess which island each of these sketches refers to? (Click on each image to zoom in and see info). Finally, Andrew Wiles asked an interesting question on Twitter the other day for the Creators, about the monsters from Mission Atlantis:
Well, I had never thought to connect those creatures to actual prehistoric animals until now :). Anyway, that's all for today's post. Happy October!
Has anyone else noticed the many ways that the Creators have started giving away free credits? This increases the freedom for non-Member Poptropicans quite a bit; they can now buy a lot more from the Store. At the same time, recent changes to Membership (the 7 islands made Members-only and rise in some Store prices) have been aimed at increasing the value of paying for Poptropica and getting more paying customers. So it seems that the Creators are making up for the shocking withdrawal of those 7 islands from public status, by getting the best of both worlds and making both Members and non-Members happy. Well, it worked, didn't it?
Anyway, enjoy Timmy Failure Island, and if you need any help, Poptrickia's guide is always handy!
Noticed anything new on Poptrickia recently? Hint: scroll up. It's Poptrickia's brand-new logo!
What do you think? This is, somewhat surprisingly, the first time Poptrickia has ever had a logo. (I know, it's been ridiculously overdue). All credit goes to the Poptropica Help Blog author and graphic designer HPuterpop; he came up with the idea and designed the logo for me! I'd love to hear feedback in the comments.
And now for some very interesting news... Poptropica may be starting a new line of YouTube cartoons! Two new videos were released recently (well, not that recently, but I'm sorry I've been so busy lately):
Watch them. They're genuinely funny. The first, "Shark Toon," is about Shark Boy (who they're now calling Shark Guy). Glad to see the character surprisingly revived after his disappearance! At the end, it promises a new installment of the series every week, but that hasn't happened yet. Perhaps due to lack of enthusiasm on both Creator's and our (the viewers') sides? Anyway, the second one features another well-known, albeit newer, Poptropica character: Gamer Guy, in a "Draw my Life"-style video. Responses to that have been quite positive, with many fans submitting their own Draw My Life videos related to Poptropica. What do you think about the cartoons? The art style is very fun in my opinion, and we need more of them, hopefully regularly.
And last but not least, the winner of the incredibly difficult Poptropica Hide & Seek challenge has been declared! Congrats to Paultropica6 for getting the correct answer. The reason why this one was so difficult (and thus dragged on for more than a month) is a little thing called parallax.
Well OK, one last hint: note the point of view that you see outside of a window in Poptropica (or in real life) as you walk past it. Notice how it shifts?
Well, that's all for this mega-long post :). I've said this many times before, but I've been very busy with school and other responsibilities recently. I don't want to make excuses, but that's the reality, and if I had enough time I would make a higher amount of reasonable-length posts more frequently rather than a couple huge ones per month. Oh well; enjoy Timmy Failure Island and Poptrickia's new logo (again, thanks a ton HPuterpop!) until next time!
Rest assured, I will soon create a detailed page on Poptrickia explaining every aspect of the Photo Booth, but here is the main overview of its features:
With these simple tools you can actually make a lot of unique stuff in that Photo Booth, and a whole hour or so can go by on it without noticing that time fly! Make sure to share your creations when they're done.
A quick note on this topic: Many things that were (or would have been) available as cards from the store, like the Costumizer, the Photo Booth, the Bundle Shop, and the tutorial, are now being represented by things on the Home Island instead. I think that's a more appealing way of presenting them as just items in a menu or Store list, isn't it? I think we'll soon see even more things, like the Friends list and the Daily Pop, turn into parts of the Home Island.
Anyway, that's all for this post. Now I'm off to play my new favorite mobile game (well, besides Poptropica), Monument Valley. I promise I'll try to post more often!
This is Poptrickia, serving you tips, tricks, cheats and more on the awesome game Poptropica for free since 2010! We've got this blog (we call it the Journal), full written walkthroughs for every island and quest in existence, and videos too!
All content on this blog is original and first posted on Poptrickia. Enjoy!
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