3 Years Later…
From the ashes
I disappeared into my bedroom, eager to toy around with my new laptop. Well, ‘new’ is an overstatement. The laptop is a first-generation, 2006 MacBook Pro. Ancient, yes, but in my eyes, it was beautiful. Besides, it was the first computer I had ever officially owned. The previous computer I used was now sitting dead in the basement.
So I popped open the laptop, set it up, and there I was, staring at the home screen. What now? Well, duh, surf the internet of course! I clicked on the blue compass of Safari and was met with the Apple home page. Ugh, this is boring; I wanna go somewhere else. But the question was: where?
Then, it hit me: little people, super powers, yellow blimp, blue screen. Poptripika! Wait no… Puptripukuh? Peptopica? Poptraupica? AH YES! I remembered. Poptropica!
I entered it in the search bar. To my surprise, the site was still up… And it looked exactly the same as it did four years ago. Uh oh, I thought. I took this as a bad sign, thinking at the time that the game hadn’t been updated in years, or worse, had been abandoned by its creators.
Despite not remembering my username and password, I decided to give it a shot, so I hit “returning player” and asked myself the age-old question: WhAt’S ThE uSeRnAmE aNd PaSsWoRd??? I thought hard, traversing deep into the forgotten depths of my memories: favorite video game character?…AH HA! Arbiter!… ugh, but what were the numbers that followed???
Then something hit me: I remembered I wrote my username and password in a sticky note the day I created the account and left it somewhere in my room… UNDER THE TISSUE BOX ON MY WARDROBE! YES! THAT’S IT!
“BuT sHiNy,” you might be thinking. “There’s no way a random sheet of paper would survive four years under a tissue box without your mom stumbling across it one day while cleaning the room, looking at it for a second and thinking, ‘you know, this looks kind of important, I think I should ask my son before throwing this away‘ …only to forget about it, and five minutes later take another look at such a seemingly insignificant sticky note and think ‘bro, the heck is this garbage lol imma throw this away.’
And to that I would say… you would be wrong. Lo and behold, I found the exact same sticky note in the exact same spot I left it four years ago under the exact same tissue box I left it under (which was basically torn to shreds by this time). I entered the username and password and my, it still works.
The screen loaded. And I was met with some new home page. I hit “return to game” and found myself in some steampunk island: exactly where I’d left off. With my little hero still in his little steampunk outfit.
“Welcome back,” he seemed to say.
“It’s been a while,” I replied.
Soon after, I decided to check out what new islands the creators had come up with, and jumped into the blimp. The map loaded up, and—OH MY GOODNESS THAT’S A LOT OF ISLANDS. The map I now saw stretched out with pages upon pages of islands I never expected to see.
I’d thought that after so many years, the game would have died off by now, but that was not the case at all. After all this time, Poptropica maintained a healthy community/fanbase that had lasted this long. I looked to my left, and saw that there was a new island called Mocktropica open to members and was soon to be released to everyone.
Ok, I said to myself. Let’s try out one of these new islands for old times’ sake and call it a day. I scanned for an island, and one in particular caught my eye: Poptropolis Games. Sounds cool. Let’s try this! So I clicked on the island, and as the island loaded, the screen got twice as big and I saw an island majestically rise up from the sea. Oh, I wonder what this is all about?
When the island finished loading, I began to take notice of something unusual, but for a while I couldn’t pinpoint what it was. Then I realized: HOLD UP. THERE’S SOUND?!!! There was background music, and I could hear my character’s little footsteps as he walked around. It wasn’t real… It couldn’t be. I punched myself in the face to make sure I wasn’t hallucinating, and sure enough, OUCH… yup, I’m not crazy—I can still hear things. Seems like the game has done a bit of upgrading…
I took a good look around and saw ruins all around me. What is this place? I asked a few people, and they said something about how the island had ‘risen again!’ (whatever that means…) and that they ‘couldn’t wait to watch the game.’ Wait. So you’re telling me I’m just going to WATCH the game?… Well, all right, I guess...
A girl wearing a red shirt greeted me with, more or less, “Haha, losers! The Wildfires won last time!” Well good for you. I walked away, then came across this dude holding a microphone who yelled, “AH! You are just in time to represent your tri– oh wait, you don’t have one, goodbye.” Then this menu popped up that threatened me to pick a tribe or else I couldn’t play the island. If you say so.
Anyway, after a few looks at the different tribes, I ultimately came to my decision: the Black Flags. I chose them because 1) the name sounds sick as heck, and 2) just before this, I was hooked onto this game called “Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag.”
Okay so now that I have my tribe, what am I supposed to do? See who can cheer the loudest for their team? You know, I happen to have mine ready if you wanna hear it…
“Great! Are you ready to represent your team?” Wait hold on wha—
“Good! Now step onto the field!” WAIT. NO. I’M NOT READY FOR THIS.
Too late. I was already in the colosseum surrounded by representatives of the other tribes. At this, I legit got scared. Not because I realized that I was actually gonna play in the tournament, but because I thought I was gonna play online. You know, with real people. I tried to leave, but I couldn’t do anything because the dude with the microphone was rambling on about how the games reopened after 100 years and my mouse had become this blue circle with spinning arrow thingies that restrained me from doing anything.
Then some chick with cool armor shot an arrow up in the sky. Not just any arrow, though, an arrow that was on fire. As it came back down I was hoping that there would be some plot twist where she would miss and “OHHH THE WHOLE PLACE IS BURNING DOWN.” But no, the arrow was on target, and the torch was lit.
I knew then that the games had begun. No matter, I’ll show these amateurs how it’s done. I waited for a few minutes to gather all the confidence I could muster. When it was finally time, I took a deep breath and marched bravely towards the microphone guy. I’m ready, I told him. And off I went to compete!
45 minutes later: Aw man, I lost to the Wildfires, let’s give this another go.
Another 45 minutes later: OH COME ON. Nightcrawlers??? Ugh, one more time.
One eternity later: Crap, now I lost to the Flying Squids. This is the last time, I swear if I lose again I will lose my— *intermission*
“And the winner is…THE BLACK FLAGS!” FINALLY! LET’S GOOOOOO! After so many tries, I finally won the tournament. Despite my earlier bitter defeats, with a little persistence I finally overcame the obstacle…. A victory… A victory of a boss fight of a worthy opponent… wait a minute… Super powers… Noodlehead…. Hot dog…
I was frozen in time with nostalgia. I quickly snapped out of it. Nahhhhh, I think I’ll just stop playing now… It was fun while it lasted! I logged off, with no intentions of ever coming back… But the seed had sprouted. Something had begun stirring inside me… passion…
Hope you enjoyed part two of this “My Place in Poptropica” story! Stay tuned for the final half of the Chronicles of Shiny Bird, coming soon to the PHB.
If you haven’t already, we invite you to send in your own (and they don’t have to be as long as this one!). Please include your username and a minimum of 500 words, typed with good spelling and grammar, and divided into labeled sections. If you send in your story, we will continue to post new community MPIPs!
Interested in writing for the PHB under a different Pop-topic? Take a look at our Write for the PHB page for ideas, guidelines, and more. We’d love to hear from you!
~the Poptropica Help Blog