VIRTUAL PETS

  • Pet Sites
  • Electronic Keychain Pets
  • Petz 4
  • Robots

    I guess I've always had a thing for artificial life. It started early and hasn't really stopped.

    Pet Sites

    I've been playing Neopets off and on since 2000. I remember I discovered it the summer between sixth and seventh grade during the height of the Pokemon craze. I was just coming down off my current obsession of Petz 4 and when I first signed up, I thought I would be able to play with my Zafara the same way I played with my weird circle dogs. No such luck. However, Neopets was a unique enough experience for me that I stuck around.

    I've had three different accounts over the years. The first was eevee_85. I lost access to it when my very first email went defunct because the server was a one-off garbage site rather than one of the giants like yahoo or html. My second was either Wolfyttwisted2099 or Wolfyttwisted_2099 or something like that. Both these old accounts have long since been purged. I have bitter memories of the 2099 one because I was still pretty young and got scammed out of my PW.

    My current account is grannylabyrinth and don't ask me why I picked that username, I could not tell you. I've had the account since 2005 and have four beautiful pets. I also have a side account, papawlabyrinth, where I have two more waiting for the day Neopets realizes how much money they'd make if we could just buy pet slots.

    Now that I'm a grown-ass adult, I'm slowly checking things off my bucket list that have been there since the beginning. I want to beast the beauty contest, I want to get into the neopian times, and I want to fully customize all my pets lookups and homepages. I'm slowly working on this and having a good time doing it.

    I play a whole host of e-pet sites now! Here are the ones I've used and I'll mark the ones I'm still active on. Feel free to add me as a friend or message me on there!

    Neopets: grannylabyrinth (active)
    Flight Rising: Crownless (semi-active)
    Goatlings: Quesadilla_Wizard (semi-active)
    Subeta: QuesadillaWizard (semi-active)
    Chicken Smoothie: Quesadilla Wizard (semi-active)
    Wajas: CovahV8 (inactive)
    Lucky Lapine: Nick (hiatus until the site's update)
    Furry Paws: Nick (inactive)

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    Electronic Keychain Pets

    Gigapet, Octopet, Dinky Dino, Weird Offbrand Watch Pet, Nana Moon Fairy Pet

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    Petz 4

    The Hex Files
    or
    How I Probably Gave the Family Computer Several Viruses as a Child

    So I was in like...7th or 8th grade when I stumbled across Petz 4. I remember getting it in the big box at Walmart and I started with Dogz. I remember insisting to my dad that it would be JUST LIKE A REAL DOG and therefore I wouldn't ASK for a real dog any more so he got it for me. Dad was a big fan of getting me anything that would reduce our chances of interacting. I spent a TON of time on the family computer--it was a big Gateway that was kept in his bedroom. I did so much shit to that poor old computer. I had a hoot with Dogz and soon got Catz to follow up since you could combine the games and play with them together. I was really enchanted by this idea because since I owned Sonic & Knuckles for the Sega, I'd been convinced that Pokemon Red and Pokemon Blue could do the same and ended up Very Disappointed.

    Anyway, I loved the hell out of Petz 4 but what the big draw was, was PETZ SITES. The game came with a built-in site builder and the idea of having my very own web page was like a drug. However. I didn't really understand that sites needed to be uploaded to a server and I remember calling my nephew (he's older than me, we were raised more like siblings) to announce that I HAD A WEBSITE and then proceded to give him the agoniziongly long directory address to my compuer's C:// drive.

    Bless.

    My failure there didn't stop me from fawning over the petz sites of other kids. I would brows Petz Shows and play with the little flash plug-in petz player on their sites, and then. THEN. I found the Downloadz.

    Everything had a Z in the petz fandom don't look at me like that.

    Members of the Ye Olde Petz Community had apparantly been active online since Petz 2 was a thing. They had created so much content. There were music files to go in the music box, custom clothes and toys, and of coures Breedz. Breedz was the first thing I was brave enough to download because somebody had made a King Charles Spaniel and it was just SO CUTE. I wish I could find the original breedz file for it because it was such a nicely made one.

    I also really really loved making Mutantz. It was easy. Just breed two wildly different-looking breedz together (the Chickenz x literally any other cat made for pure gold) and just watch the abominations frolic and levitate all over the back yard.

    I did try my hand at hexing once but it proved to just be too tough for my middleschooler mind to wrap his head around. I managed to change the chinchilla persion so that it only had one ear and one of its eyes was the wrong color and that was it. I have SO MUCH RESPECT for anybody who can hex anything that looks like something. I actually have a dear friend who still hexes!

    If you're interested in getting back into Petz and would like to download the game and a ton of other fun resources, go HERE Petz R Us

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    Robots

    to add: Tekno and Poochi, Micropets, Aibo

    FURBY
    The year is 1998. Bill Clinton is president. Nobody understands the internet. Furby is here.

    I don't have a very clear memory of first seeing Furby advertized but I knew I was possessed with a demon-like intensity in the knowlage that I must have Furby. It was everything I had dreamed of, possibly the closest thing to having a real Pokemon I could get. They were impossible to find. People got into fights in the aisles at Walmart. My aunt, who my dad secretly enlisted to obtain one of these chatty little bastards, actually got scratched by another woman while attempting to pluck one from the shelves. It was a different time.

    Christmas rolls around and I open my beloved Tolu. He was solid black with white feet and a little mane and tail. I played with him a lot and was CONVINCED he could understand me. At one point, though, his batteries started running down and I didn't really understand what was going on when his eye servos got stuck and he started making an Unfortunate Noise. He was eventually banished to the closet as my interest shifted.

    My sister eventually sold him on her ebay shop. I wonder where he is now. I hope he is being loved.

    In 2018, I discovered through a youtube video that people still really love furbies and are doing all kinds of cool stuff with them. It really inspired me to seek out a furby again. Now that I'm a grown-ass adult, I can really appreciate what a neat little toy these guys are. Their program is simple but nice to interact with and I like mashing all the little buttons and making their servos move. And just kinda talking to them because my flesh pets don't speak english OR furbish.

    A lovely friend from the furry fandom sent me a classic furby for my 31st birthday. This is Genny:

    He is a good boy. He's an original 1998 furby. He's missing his tush tag but he still has his hang tag. It's pretty dammaged though so I may remove it when I customize him. If I do, I'll make a page just for him. I named him Genny because his name translates to "again' in furbish.

    I have a Year 2000 furby still in-box that I found at a flea market and if I don't decide to customize them, I'll find them a good home thorugh the furb commuity. If you'd like a Y2k furby, let me know!

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