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Finding Your Forte

by spidrgrrl2004


(Note: This guide is aimed toward newbies, but it comes in handy if you're having trouble playing as well.)

It's Saturday, and raining outside. Homework finished, you're lounging in your desk chair, staring at your userlookup. Unpainted, non-rare pets, no HTML, barely any secret avatars, and no trophies. "How do I make it better?" you say aloud, not caring if anyone hears you.

Well, here it is, a guide to finding out what you want to do with your account! As the title says, this is for finding your forte on Neopets and exercising it to the extreme.

So you've decided to start in on beefing up your virtual identity. First of all, see how much time you have on Neopets. If you've got school starting at 7:30, then play practice back to back with soccer practice with barely any time for dinner 5 days a week, then you might want to set some reasonable goals for yourself and break them up bit by bit, playing when you can. If you have too much free time, more than you can handle, great, but fair warning: it is NOT good for you to sit on the computer all day!

Let's start with the basics, shall we?

Goal 1: Your Pets

See those little animals that appear all over the site? Those are Neopets. If you don't have one already, create one with a species that you like and a name that is clever and slightly original. Don't want to go through the trouble of creating one? Check out the pound; there are plenty of needy pets over there that are looking for a new home!

Once you have a pet (and if you want to paint it), go over to the Rainbow Pool and do a color browse. There are tons of colors you can choose from, from the light-hearted Faerie to the dark Darigan, oozing malice. I for one adore the Darigan Aisha, which would be perfectly fitting for my grumpy Wocky.

Which brings me to my next point: create a personality for your pet! This will make your time on Neopets more worthwhile and can be a load of fun for you. If you can't decide on a color, choose one that will fit the personality of your pet (Remember that you can change the species!) or vice-versa: choose a personality for a color you love.

Make some Neopoints off of games and restocking, buy a paintbrush and/or morphing potion, and your pet will be lovely in no time! Don't forget to feed it and train it a little as well.

What you want to avoid: Trying to tackle all of your pets at the same time. This will cause too much stress for yourself and the time it takes to make your pets awesome will extend.

Goal 2: Trophies

We all love shiny things, am I right? Of course I am! Trophies are a very good goal that takes no money whatsoever, just time, effort, and patience.

The main income of trophies is from games. If you are playing a game and think, "Hey, I'm pretty good at this," then check the highscores for said game. Usually they'll be abnormally high (such as 10,000 for Turmac Roll), and sometimes they'll be just within reach. The latter is what you want to aim for, although there is always hope!

Look at the lowest score for the bronze trophy and write it down on a piece of paper, which you should put near your computer. Next, find a game guide somewhere in the Times or ask around on the boards for help. If you want to tackle the game, then keep your eyes peeled for movement (if the game is fast paced), or take your time and think things out carefully (if it's NQ2 or something of that sort). If you feel frustrated, try another. It doesn't hurt to try with other games!

What you want to avoid: Aiming for the very top score right away, unless you really think you can get it. It'll be even more disappointing when you don't get it, no matter how hard you try.

Goal 3: HTML

By far the easiest, yet most stressful, goal in the entire game. Usually a spiffy lookup or shop can be achieved within a day, although it will take a few hours.

Open 4 windows: the profile editing page, a paint program, a spare window for images, and an HTML guide. Browse around other peoples' lookups and get ideas for what you want to do. If you haven't attempted coding an entire lookup by yourself, go slow and learn as you go. Put images together in a cute way, and remember: even if you don't have a high tech paint program, you can still put together some really good coding!

What you want to avoid: Combining too many images plus a flashy background plus neon colors that clash with each other. Keep it simple and clean, and people will like it. Those "I'll rate your lookup" boards don't hurt if you need extra feedback.

Goal 4: Avatars

Ever wonder why those little images underneath peoples' usernames on the boards cause so much fuss? It reflects how your account is doing! Plus they look pretty. :D

Find a list of avatars somewhere and get all the clickable avies first, seeing as they add something to your lookup. Then browse down the list and find an avie that you're willing to try for.

This is where this part of the guide branches off in all different directions. If it's for a certain pet or item, save up and get the item/paint your pet that color. If it's games, take my advice from the trophies section and work up your score. Try another if you feel that the one you chose is out of reach.

It's always good to set a number of avatars you want for yourself! Aim for 200 if you really want a challenge. Keep in mind that some are retired and you will never be able to get them if you don't possess them already!

What to avoid: Aiming for something like the Faerie Doll avatar if you can barely scrape 50 Neopoints a day. Make the avatar affordable yet something you like.

There are the four goals on Neopets that most people try for, although they are certainly not the only ones. Guilds are a good one, and I'll tell you right now that a guild takes a lot of people that you're friendly with to build and that it won't spring to life right away. Pick your goal, aim, and fire. Good luck to you!

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