What Makes a Neopet Special
Some people have plenty of Neopoints, but they have a Neopet or two who they leave as a red, yellow, blue or green creature of a common species. Others wonder why they don't just paint them at least something cheap.
I'm Ellbot1998. Not really. My real name doesn't have numbers in it. Earth is very different from Neopia. And you might want to scribble out that previous sentence before your pet sees it and wonders what the Peophin you're talking about.
If a rumor goes around that I like Peophins because of my expression there, you know what? I do like Peophins a lot. I just have this strange attraction to them. They're fun to customize.
Well, some of you who frequent the New Series section of the NT may recognize my username. They'll say, "Hey, she writes the Shadow of the Xweetoks saga, doesn't she?" And I do. Neopets has helped me find my passion for writing, and is helping me hone my skills.
That brings me to my next point. The best things in life are free. Thus the best things in Neopets are free. You didn't hear that from me.
We have pretty much everything from the start. We're all equal. The game isn't any more fun if we have five Draiks, a Krawk and a Maractite Uni; but Unis do look good in Maractite. Nor is it less fun if our only pet is a yellow Xweetok which you instinctively named holycowlookatmeiamcute because that's all you thought about him at first. And you meant for him to be a girl, but couldn't figure out how to set the gender, and he's male by default.
You know what? Maybe I'm a little bit wrong. Maybe you can't name a pet holycowlookatmeiamcute because it's possibly more than twenty characters long (the max for a pet name IS twenty characters, right?). I just don't care enough about a pet's name to count the letters, and I'm avoiding looking at the name holycowlookatmeiamcute as I type so that I don't count things up by accident, and thus have to remove this sentence. If I did, then you apparently don't exist, because you're reading these sentences.
But I could also be wrong elsewhere. You could end up buying three sets of clothes for Meiam, the nickname you affectionately dubbed your only pet, and have fun customizing him five times every time you're on. Perhaps you and your friends could laugh for the next week or so about how you couldn't figure out how to make Meiam the right gender. Maybe it is more fun if you have a pet with whom you have anecdotes and sentimental attachment.
My computer is trying to correct my grammar. It thinks that I should have said "which" and not "whom" just now. But I disagree. I know that Neopets aren't lifeless images. My Aisha is a "who" and a "she", but not an "it".
We're the people who bring these pets to life. We're the ones who play with them. We're the ones who write and daydream about them.
We're the ones who believe in them.
Think about things. What's your favorite game? Edna's Shadow, you say? That one is my favorite, too. When you created Meiam, was it there for you to play? Or did you have it only after you got your first painted pet?
Here on Neopets, we can only buy items. Items rarely enhance game play, and I'm half-sorry (only half) that that phrase sounds a little bit like my inner videogame geek crying out for freedom. But I have to suppress it. I'm writing.
I think this is the first rant or rave I've ever written. TNT always rejects my articles nowadays, but I have a good feeling about this one. Because I'm passionate about this.
Now, when I first created my aforementioned Aisha, she was red. Plain old red. Now she's plushie. Don't call me a hypocrite. I like my Aisha best as plushie. I can talk about unpainted Neopets, but that doesn't mean I don't have the right to get a cute color on my eldest pet. You know what? I'm talking about her a lot, so I'll just go ahead and tell you this. Her name is Sue.
My first account's name is long forgotten. My first pet's name was Oni and some numbers. He was a red Uni. I had that account for a day or two.
My second account's name is Ellbot2000. You can look it up if you want. I had it for years, but then my password was lost, and the rest was history.
Anyways, my pets on that account were the same ones as those over here. I didn't transfer them. I created them anew. Their names were identical, except for a couple of spelling corrections, different numbers on the end and capitalization.
Sue was special. My mother helped me make her when I made my original account seven years ago. She helped me type Sue's name. Sue still had numbers on the end, but she was capitalized, at least. She was my only pet whose name was at least capitalized.
She's always been special. She was special when she was first made as a red Aisha. She was special when she was made as a red Aisha again. She's been special as a seven-year-old split Aisha on my old account. She was special when I painted her split on this account. She was still special when I repainted her cloud because I couldn't make up my mind. She wasn't any more special when I finally used my Plushie Paint Brush, which I got from the last part of my second series landing right on the Christmas issue of the NT, on her.
Because she couldn't get any more special.
See, the point I'm trying to make is that it's not the lack of numbers or non-default color or Draik-ness of a pet which makes him or her special. It's the stories you share. You make him or her special. I have never typed the word special so much in my entire NT saga, or in my entire life. That word is special in two different ways. If your brain is still intact, just keep reading.
You know what? I have a long history with red Neopets. My first pet was red. My second first pet was red, and was when she was reborn. The Peophin whom I created upon the opening of my side account chomby_sporks was red. The Lupess whom I adopted onto that account was red.
I adopted a blue Acara before my Lupess. I repainted him red with a starter paint brush. I'll never paint him again.
I remember that day so well. My side account had just been activated. I was surfing the pound, looking for a decently-named male Ixi to hopefully paint Darigan. I couldn't decide. This blue Acara with an eerie name, Dayirn, kept popping up. I thought it would be a good name for a Darigan Ixi. So you know what? I adopted him with the intent of morphing him.
But then I realized that Acaras are adorable. I used to not like them. So I kept him as an Acara. And he still is. He's exceptional enough. I don't need to paint him again.
Basic is fine. Just fine. You don't require a Draik. Forget you ever wanted one, if you did.
Why isn't basic enough? Why do we all need to trade Neopets until we have four WN UC LE pets? That's well-named, unconverted (Neopet with the old artwork) and limited edition. Why do we need such meaningless letters?
That reminds me. A perfect (fictional) example of this is the short story WN BD PPL BC AV UFT by chocolate_fudge7, published in issue 468 of the Neopian Times. It tells the story of a pet whose owner attempts to trade every day for the owner's "dream pet."
This dream pet is an unconverted plushie Draik whom he doesn't receive in the end.
But he can't realize that his current pet is perfect; a painted Draik who has shared memories with him since the beginning. And he already has her. That's the best part.
My dream pet is whatever pet I have. And personally, it always will be. I like being different enough to say that. We should all try that. Just be happy that you have a pet. Can't anyone be grateful anymore? 99.9% of all there is on Neopets is completely free. We don't need complete paintbrush galleries or a row of four expensive pets.
Why isn't basic enough?
Because no one else thinks so.