Why Do YOU Love Your Favorite Pets?
There is a new generation of Neopets players, people who have only ever known the version of Neopets that enables the customization of pets. People now love their pets for a vast number of reasons, most notably the way the pets look when customized.
Having been around since before customization was created, I have to admit that my pet priorities are different from those of newer players. I tend to pay attention to pet names and colors most of all. But newer players love pets for the ways in which they can be customized, and often adopt pets because they look amazing when adorned with wearables from the NC Mall.
Curious about this newer generation of players, I thought it would be interesting to ask the Neoboards why THEY love their favorite pet species. I received a lot of thought-provoking replies! So many, in fact, that I was inspired to write this article!
So here is a list of reasons why the new generation of Neopets players love their pets! I hope it makes you all smile and think!
1. Themed Customization
Hands down, the number one reason why people adopted or created their pets was because the color or species looked amazing when customized! One player even admitted that he used to hate Moehogs, but fell in love with the Moehog Poet outfit, since he's a writer in real life. This is quite a break from the old Neopets, where people were limited to only Paint Brush colors, and not a variety of themed clothes. This player also admitted that having fallen in love with the Poet outfit, he fell in love with all Moehogs afterwards, which I thought was charming and cute!
2. Old Pet Age
When I first started playing Neopets, the site was only 7 years old. Pet trading was not allowed at the time, and no one paid attention to pet age, since all the pets were young anyway. Nowadays, owning an old pet is considered a status symbol, and old pets are much coveted on the Pound Neoboard, often trading for Draiks and Krawks. This is quite a break from the old Neopets, when no one cared if a pet was from Year 1 or Year 5. And I still don't, though my fellow players do!
3. Great Names
Now that pet trading is allowed, people are assiduously trying to trade up towards their favorite real word/name pets. In the old days, you had to stalk a purged name in the Create-A-Pet page in hopes of catching the pet name as soon as it was available. Nowadays, people trade up towards such pets. I've seen some really spectacular pets, like unconverted Royalgirl Cybunnies and unconverted Faerie Draiks, being traded for some remarkable one-word pets. In the old days, names weren't that important. Nowadays, people take great pride in owning pets with gorgeous names like "Sparkle" and "Love."
4. Base Colors
I've lately seen the phenomenon where painted pets with jewelry and robes and other accoutrements that belonged to their Paint Brush clothes had these items removed. For instance, I saw someone remove the golden jewelry and white cloak of their turquoise Royalgirl Peophin and customize the Peophin anew with items from the NC Mall, resulting in a gorgeous Peophin with glowing aqua clothes and surroundings. It seems that base colors matter a lot more than they used to!
5. Stories, Artwork, Poetry
Now that pets are more affordable nowadays (at one time, a Draik Morphing Potion would set you back 14 million Neopoints), pet species are more equalized. People now only get Draiks and Krawks if they truly love the species, and not because they cost an expensive 400k. What has resulted, in the past year, is people trading away their more "expensive" pets for pets that inspire them instead. At any given moment, there are people on the Pound Neoboard who are trying to trade away their painted Draiks for pets that inspire them to write stories and poetry. I think this new development is interesting! As someone who is regularly inspired to write poetry about her own pets, I love the fact that people are trading away their Krawks for Chocolate Kacheeks!
6. They're Not Unconverted
Many people agree with TNT's lament that TNT should never have created unconverted pets. That's why many players insist that they'll never own an UC pet, even if they own fierce battle pets that would easily trade for a high-tier UC pet. They insist that their plain Blue Kacheeks are much better looking than any UC pet, and as someone who is deeply in love with her own Blue Lutari, I have to agree with them!
Many people have new criteria for trading their pets -- they are seeking pets who have a lot of book trophies or Beauty Contest trophies. In the old days, no one really paid attention to such trophies when trading their pets, but now that Neopets has been around for 15 years, the allure of owning a pet with 20 or more trophies has skyrocketed. One player that I met a few months back admitted that he traded for a pet that already had 12 Beauty Contest trophies, then entered the pet into the contest again, earning 2 more. He doesn't plan to ever stop, and I had to applaud his dedication!
8. Gift Pets
Now that earning Neopoints is a lot easier than it used to be (thanks, Trudy's Surprise!), there is a new phenomenon in which people are giving away expensive pets. Search the Pound Neoboard at any given time, on any given day, and there will be someone trying to give away their Pirate Draik for free. Someone I spoke to on the Pound Neoboard said that she loved her Pirate Draik because someone had simply given it to her, no applications required, and I thought this was cool and inspiring! Thanks, Pound chatters, for being so generous to your fellow players!
9. Accidental Love
Years ago, when I was trading my pets, I was trying to up-trade towards an UC pet. In the process, I ended up trading for a Plushie Kiko, who I promptly stashed on a side account. Though a Plushie Kiko was never a dream pet of mine, over the next few days, I fell deeply in love with her. She was so squishy, pink and cute! Apparently my story isn't unique, either. Lots of people on the Pound Neoboard admitted that they also had fallen in love with their trading fodder, and ended up keeping pets they never even liked before, but liked now. I gave everyone a high-five and celebrated our new permanent pets!
10. They're Not Yours
The cool part about Neopets is that people are rarely jealous of other peoples' success! The people that I spoke to on the Neoboards openly admitted that they admire and appreciate other players that have rare pets. Plus, emulating these people gave them goals and ambitions that they otherwise wouldn't have had. I thought it was charming how people took such a positive spin on things, and admired people instead of being jealous or covetous of their rare pets!
Times have certainly changed since 2007, when customization became the norm! I'm glad to see all the interesting changes that have happened throughout Neopets' evolution, and that the reasons for loving your favorite pets have multiplied and grown. I have to admit, I used to hate certain pet species, but with the plethora of outfits available for them to wear, I now love them all! I often wish I could own 40 pets instead of the current maximum of 20, just because I love the clothes!
Why do YOU love your favorite pets? Feel free to neomail me with your response! And thanks for chatting with me on the Neoboards, my fellow players! Talking with you is always the highlight of my Neopets day. Good luck with getting all of your dream pets, and have a spectacular week!