|“||Waddle around and meet new friends!||”|
— Club Penguin's official motto.
- To go on Club Penguin, see ClubPenguin.com.
- Not what you were looking for? Check the disambiguation page.
Club Penguin is an online-based, massively multiplayer online role-playing game (abbreviated as a MMORPG) created by New Horizon Interactive in the summer of 2005. It had a public Beta Testing in August 2005, and was officially launched on October 24, 2005. It was later bought by Disney in August 2007. It involves a virtual world, where the players are penguins, and is featuring a large range of minigames and other online activities, and is based on a snowy island, after which the game is named.
Club Penguin has been noted as sharing similarities with other popular browser-based online environments such as RuneScape and Habbo Hotel , such as the use of an in-game currency to purchase virtual items and pets, named "puffles". The game is specifically designed for players within the ages of 6-14, thus child safety is a vital responsibility of the game's developers. The game was founded by Lance Priebe, and co-founded by Lane Merrifield, and Dave Krysko. There are over 200,000,000 penguin accounts created and played in over 190 countries. It is now estimated that over 150 million people worldwide play Club Penguin, which was originally built on a Smart Fox Server. Their headquarters is in Kelowna, Canada.
In 2000, Lance Priebe had been working at the company New Horizon Interactive in Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada. He had the idea about creating an online snowball war game that would involve penguins. They originally chose penguins because they were easy to animate and Lance was inspired by a picture in the newspaper of a penguin slipping on a banana peel. His friend, Lane Merrifield, who was also working for the company at the time, told him that should take Lance's idea to create a virtual world for kids, and expand on it to make a whole island full of places to explore and things to do. They asked their boss, Dave Krysko, if they could go on to make this idea, and he said to go for it. And so, the two set out to make it happen. To start off, Lance Priebe created his own website, Rocketsnail Games. This site would soon include the game that would inspire the creation of Club Penguin: Experimental Penguins.
Experimental Penguins was a small game that wasn't very popular. Players could create a penguin that could waddle around, chat and throw snowballs. Then the idea got much bigger. Penguin Chat and Penguin Chat 3 came along, with things such as ninjas and Snow Trekkers (or Snowcats), which would later be incorporated into Club Penguin. Lane and Lance knew that they had to take the small game that Penguin Chat 3 was and make it so big that children all over the world could connect and play together. They thought of names such as World of Penguins and Penguin Land, but they eventually settled on one name: Club Penguin, because they wanted their players to feel as part of a community since the virtual world itself was meant to be a community.
The development for the duo's dream game, Club Penguin, had begun. The two, who were now known in the game as Rsnail and Billybob, hired Gizmo as a moderator and Screenhog as an artist and sound manager. They created Club Penguin with no external funding, and eventually created a few basic rooms and interface. In August 2005, the small team of developers put up a beta website, where people could beta test the game and search for bugs and glitches. Beta Testing had done so well to help the game that the team decided to throw a Beta Party, to show appreciation to the penguins who had helped them make sure Club Penguin was ready for launch. The Beta Test Party began on September 21, 2005, and only lasted for two hours. After one more month of beta testing, Club Penguin was ready for public official launch. Its doors were opened on October 24, 2005. Millions of penguins signed up. Days after, Club Penguin released its first ever major party: the Halloween Party 2005. In November 2005, round fluff balls called Puffles started appearing at the Snow Forts. They became adoptable as pets on March 17, 2006, in the Pet Shop in The Plaza. That year, Club Penguin had hired Chris Gliddon, also known as Polo Field, as Club Penguin's historian, and he soon became head of social media. Club Penguin had reached hundreds of employees by late 2006, and it soon became one of the most popular virtual worlds around. Many new locations and games had been added to the island. In August 2007, Club Penguin was looking for a business partner to reach out to more children and families across the globe. They chose The Walt Disney Company, the world's leading source of family entertainment. With Disney, Club Penguin was able to do more things that they couldn't do before. From then on, New Horizon Interactive became known as Disney Online Studios Canada. In October 2008, for Club Penguin's 3rd Anniversary Party, the first plush and figurine toys were released. There was a big party in Times Square in New York City to celebrate three years of Club Penguin.
In 2010, both Rsnail and Screenhog left the game. Rsnail left Club Penguin to pursue a new project, Mech Mice. In October 2012, Billybob left the game to create new educational technology for schools. Chris Heatherly, also known as Spike Hike, took over as General Manager and Vice President of the company the following February. In early April 2013, social media staff member and moderator Businesmoose left Club Penguin to work on Mech Mice with Rsnail and Screenhog. On June 19, 2013, Club Penguin created their own official Facebook page. They will post sneak peeks and their own history on their page.
On August 1, 2007, Club Penguin was bought by The Walt Disney Company. Club Penguin joined Disney so they could help spread Club Penguin throughout the world in many different countries, in many different languages. Disney would also help make Club Penguin much better and much safer for their players. Disney purchased Club Penguin for the initial price of 350 million United States Dollars, with an additional 350 million dollars in bonuses provided specific targets were met by 2009.
In the summer of 2012, Club Penguin was sponsored by Marvel, Shake it Up, and Innocent Fruit Smoothies. In the summer of 2013, Club Penguin teamed up with Pixar Animation Studios to create the Monsters University Takeover, with Lucasfilm to create the Star Wars Takeover, and Disney Channel for the Teen Beach Movie Summer Jam. The Marvel Super Hero Takeover also returned as the Marvel Super Hero Takeover 2013. In 2014, Club Penguin hosted the Muppets World Tour. Players believe Club Penguin partnered with these companies to increase revenue and ultimately try to draw in more players.
Club Penguin first started selling merchandise in 2006 on their online store. In 2007, when Club Penguin was bought by Disney, they decided to make toys available in more places besides online. On October 24, 2008, Club Penguin toys were shipped to stores all around the world, where players could buy them at their nearest supermarket. Club Penguin has sold merchandise such as stuffed plush penguins, and stuffed puffles, mix and match figures (in which head, body, some items, and lower parts of a penguin come off to mix with another set or another penguin in the same set) and Card-Jitsu cards; including Card-Jitsu Fire and Water cards.
Ten books, such as "The Ultimate Official Club Penguin Guide Volume 1", "The Official Stage Playbook", "Secret Agent Handbook", "Stowaway! Adventures at Sea" and "Waddle Lot of Laughs", The Great Puffle Switch, Dancing with Cadence, Shadow Guy and Gamma Gal: Heroes Unite, Stuck on Puffles, and The Card-Jitsu Handbook are all created by the Snowball Press, also known as Club Penguin Headquarters. There is also a Club Penguin annual that comes out every year. It is only available for a limited time on the book codes page.
Club Penguin has owned a YouTube channel since 2011. A Club Penguin Animated Short series began on December 3rd, 2011. It sometimes airs on Disney XD and Disney Channel.
A TV show of the game within the Global TV Network is also rumored to be in production and coming onto TV soon (however, these rumors could be about the animated shorts).
Credit goes to Club Penguin Wiki for letting us copy their page.