Yep, Pop Petitions is making its rounds again because lately, fans have faced some disappointment. We’ve had multiple posts voicing concerns about Pop Worlds, but right now we are going to focus on the main feature Poptropica has to offer: islands.
Islands and their adventures are what Poptropica is all about, so that’s what the Creators should really be putting effort into, right? Poptropica is a game, so game play really counts. However, some of the game play in Poptropica Worlds has been lacking, as we’ve talked about in previous island reviews.
#1: In-Depth Storylines
Shouldn’t this request speak for itself? The storyline of an island is arguably its most important aspect. We’ve seen some captivating tales in the past, from Ghost Story to Arabian Nights and other fan favorites, but recent islands have been less than enthralling.
Though this is a kids game, it is still important to keep the players attention. With a story that leaves you on the edge of your seat, a player is dying to solve the puzzle and keep the adventure going. Without this, an island can seem like a chore. Things can’t be too rushed, nor can they be too drawn out.
An example that most can agree on that is lacking in storyline would probably be Crisis Caverns. While it contains an interesting idea and some cool scenes, there is no development or intriguing plot twists. The whole story seems a bit flat, which is especially disappointing when looking back at some of Poptropica Original’s in depth adventures. Further thoughts on this are expressed in our Crisis Caverns Review.
#2: Gameplay Itself
With Poptropica’s click-based controls, advanced motion is certainly limited. As previously said, the storyline is what makes most islands interesting. Still, the gameplay is a big part of a game, and it seems a bit lacking in some islands.
Some elements are definitely not bad, but also overused (chase scenes being the most notable). Minigames like these can be irritating on a slow computer, for sure, but also don’t present a huge challenge. In fact, many people report glitches in their playthroughs, resulting in having to play minigames all over again. But what else is new?
Though cut scenes and minigames are fine, I do think Poptropica should focus on one thing in particular: puzzles. Being a kids game (that is supposed to be educational), I believe puzzles would be a lot more beneficial as gameplay elements. We’ve certainly seen these before, in islands like Nabooti and Spy Island, but they don’t always get the credit they deserve, nor are they utilized to the best of their ability.
#3: Character Development
Characters are also a big part of the Poptropica world, resulting in countless pieces of fan art and fan fiction. We all have our favorite villains and side characters, but some aren’t built upon too much. There are our main four villains, along with some other diamonds in the rough, but other than that many characters are fairly 2D.
We do see development in some classic Poptropica Original adventures, but it has really gone down hill in recent islands. While this does allow fans to build up backstories and orientations with their own headcanons, we don’t get confirmation about theories or personality traits.
Character development is a big part of getting a player to actually care about the people and plot. Adding depth to even a minor Poptropican through their dialogue, significance, appearance, etc. can add layers of interest and detail. We’d love to see more of that so our fan fiction can be accurate and consistent!
#4: Easter Eggs & Interaction
Though not necessary, easter eggs and little interactive features can spark a lot of interest. We actually got to see a lot of this in Greek Sea Odyssey, from Wonder Woman’s appearance to funny treasure chests and quotes. And that’s what I like to see, no matter how small!
It may not add to storyline or character development that much, but it still enhances the entire environment. Since exploring every clickable object isn’t necessary to complete an island, it can make a dedicated player feel rewarded when a secret is found. These features can be hilarious and references to other fandoms can make fans feel great.
It was amazing to see these features in such a recent island, especially since they’ve been a bit rare in the past. However, it is important that they do not detract from the storyline! Way more effort needs to be put into the main adventure before extra elements are added.
#5: Visuals, Audio, & Dialogue
Thankfully, Poptropica’s visuals and audio have been stunning for a long time. Though some dialogue can be lacking, even it can be quite funny. Still, recent departures of well known Creators can be worrying when it comes to the preservation of these elements.
Visuals, audio, and dialogue are key in making a player really feel a part of a game. Though no more important than the storyline, they can make or break the mood of an environment. Wouldn’t it be weird if music from Monster Carnival was playing on Galactic Hot Dogs Island? *shivers*
There isn’t much to complain about here, because Poptropica is often breathtaking in this category. But let’s keep it that way! With the decline of other gaming elements, it is vital that these don’t go downhill too.
Remember that this post isn’t meant to bash the Creators, but instead voice the opinions and suggestions of fans. We all want Poptropica to be as awesome as possible!
So, what are your thoughts? Do you agree with our list? What do you want to see in future Poptropica Worlds Islands? Be sure to let us know what other Pop Petitions we should make as well!