What To Do With An Invisible Pet
I remember the day I painted Princess__Penguin__ to a lovely shade of purple. I had played daily for two to four hours, every day for three weeks before I had finally saved enough to get her a purple paint brush. She looked so radiant on the left of my screen that we went shopping for a new matching wardrobe and used some hoarded neocash to get her a stylish background and comfortable shoes. Of course she was waiting for the glorious moment until I had saved up enough neopoints to paint her royal, as befits a Bruce of her majesty. But purple was what a month of playing could afford her so she was very proud and entered the customization spotlight.
Then tragedy struck. While we were playing our games of the day, she disappeared. At first I thought it was a glitch. I tried changing her clothes, refreshing the page, even restarting the computer but my dear pet was nowhere to be found. Her lovely new outfit hung on an invisible figure, still holding the dripping ice cream with a non-existent hand.
I went to the help board to beg knowledge from more experienced Neopians. There I learned that there are several random events that can forever change one’s pet (assuming you don’t repaint afterwards):
1. Boochi, a baby Bruce, zaps your pet with his ray gun, turning your pet baby.
a. “Oh no! Boochi fires his ray gun and turns petname into a Baby!!!”
2. If your pet is sad he may be randomly turned blue.
a. “Petname doesn't look very happy. In fact, (s)he looks downright Blue. Maybe a toy would help.”
3. If your pet is angry he may be randomly turned red.
a. “Erm... Petname looks a little... angry. Don't you think you should keep her happy?”
4. Your pet is randomly turned invisible... by something.
a. “Oh no! Where on earth is petname, you can't find him anywhere!!! Where on Neopia could he be?”
Princess__Penguin__ had just received the last random event and so I spent about an hour being told the best way to proceed with my Neopian life. Many users keep a pet they don’t care about as their active, as a type of shield. But this confused me. Princess__Penguin__ is my only pet (my other exists to be zapped *hopefully* into a Chomby and will be moved to a new alternate account later), I look forward to seeing her every day and I get her new clothes and backgrounds because I’m proud of her. The idea of seeing her only when I go to my user lookup baffles me. Why have a pet you don’t see? Why see a pet you don’t like?
Yet while it is hard for any owner to accept their favorite pet becoming unseen or transforming into a color they don’t care for, it is even sadder to let go altogether. I’ve spent all my free time taking Princess__Penguin__ to school, finding her outfits, saving for her royal paint brush, and devoting a gallery to her (and her love of Bruce). If you too care for your neopet in their current color and are faced with a tragic random event, there remain but four choices, each with their own pros and cons:
1. Repaint your pet and move on.
1. You can see your pet again (assuming your pet became invisible).
2. You finally have an excuse to get that dream paint brush you’ve been waiting for.
3. If your pet was a basic color, you have those starter paint brushes you couldn’t trade or sell that you can use to restore his or her color.
1. You have lost all neopoints and time you spent painting that pet originally (assuming your pet had a custom color obtained through paint brush or transmogrification potion) and you must now buy yet another to restore his or her color.
2. You risk the reoccurrence of another color changing random event.
2. Don’t repaint and move on.
1. You don’t have to buy another paint brush.
2. You love your pet for who she is, not what she looks like, right?
3. If you had a basic pet, the new color is like a free custom paint brush.
1. If you don’t like the new color, it’s going to irk you each time you see your pet.
3. Keep a pet you don’t like as your active.
1. Your favorite pets are safe from random events.
1. You won’t see them unless you go looking under your user lookup or to customize your pet.
2. You will have to look at “not your favorite” on the left side of the screen.
3. Benefits of Coltzan’s Shrine, underwater fishing, faerie quests, etc. will now happen to “not your favorite” unless you change your active before each outing and then restore “not your favorite” afterwards (you still run the risk of a random event during these outings).
1. No more random events... ever.
1. Can you really live without Neopets?
2. You’ve spent all the time earning neopoints, painting your pet, etc. and you are just going to give up?
3. What will your neopets think about this downright abandonment?
Your fellow Neopians can teach you about random events but only you can make the choice on how to proceed if one occurs to you and yours. For Princess__Penguin__ and me, the decision has been made to repaint and move on. She would never forgive me for leaving her in her current invisible state or for leaving for any purely aesthetic reason. And while I could get another pet to serve as the random events shield, I would miss seeing her while we explore Neopia together. So the struggle to save enough neopoints for a royal paint brush continues and she will remain forever as my active pet. Money isn’t everything, even in Neopets, and some of us have no choice but to be loyal to our pets, no matter what color they may randomly turn.