Poptropica fans waited in anticipation after the promise of a big announcement today. And at long last, we received the news:
Poptropica has selected 13 old islands as well as the Minecraft-esque Poptropica Realms to port for download on Steam, the video game distribution platform. Currently, there’s no word of an exact date or which islands will be included. However, they will be “dropping daily hints” starting tomorrow, so keep an eye out and start guessing!
While this is definitely exciting (and long overdue), we find it a bit odd for an online game to make the move to Steam. After all, why not just upload them to the Poptropica website?
Perhaps this could be related to Poptropica’s longevity. Many similar online games have either moved on to new platforms or simply shut down over time. Porting old islands to Steam could allow fans to continue exploring their favorite islands even in the event Poptropica itself has to shut down, as the game could live on without their servers.
Plus, years of waiting (and an abandoned attempt with Pop Worlds) have shown that Pop seems to have had a lot of difficulty getting older Pop islands up and running on their own Haxe-based platform. The struggle of technology and moving away from Flash may be another factor in deciding to make this content on another platform.
This bundle will also include several features from the online game, including the ability to “customize personal clubhouses, adopt pets, and access multiplayer features like the arcade and common rooms.” It’s currently up in the air if this will be free or how much it will cost. The release date will be “in several weeks.”
Was this a response to desperate fans’ pleas? Either way, this may be a sign that Pop will focus on rebuilding itself, and prioritize past promises over new ideas. Also, will the islands be completely true to the originals, or will they add features such as unreleased music?
Which islands would you like to see? How do you feel about the Steam port, and what do you think it means for the future of Pop? Let us know! (I am 100% begging for the return of Astro-Knights and Ghost Story, as many of you probably would have guessed! 😆)
Castori honorem ~ Maryann/Smart Bubbles