Part 1

Originally posted on Wordpress on 28 July 2023

The Neopets landing page, showing one pet: a blue Kougra called xDarksweep.

After hearing the news about Neopets getting a new owner - from the r/games subreddit, of all places - my curiosity got the better of me and I decided to check out Neopets once again. Since I deleted my old accounts in 2010 or so, I had to make a new one. It's selenicseas, and my sole Neopet is a blue Kougra named xDarksweep, a revival of my old Christmas-painted Kougra named Darksweep.

Right off the bat, I noticed that...the website is buggy. The search function doesn't work if there's an underscore in it, attempting to go back a page causes the page not to load at all in a lot of cases, and right-clicking on links is next to impossible on the new (mobile-friendly?) layout, which you can see above.

This new layout is only available on some of the pages. Other pages are basically the same as they were 15 years ago.

The userlookup of selenicseas.

What you see above is the "old" layout. It's much easier to navigate and you can right-click on the dropdown links without problem.

It seems to be a lot easier to gain Neopoints just from non-game dailies. I don't think I managed to break 100k back in the day, but this time around I had 26k in about three days. Rare items are incredibly, horribly inflated in price compared to the past, with paintbrushes in the trade center being worth millions of np instead of the hundreds of thousands I remember.

Speaking of games, there were only a handful left (due to them being Flash-based) until July 25th, when an update was released to revive some more old games using the Ruffle browser extension. I only checked out a few of the games, mostly pre-Ruffle integration, and they're actually harder to play...due to my 1080p monitors. Back in the day, we all had 1024 x 768 monitors, and those 300x300px games were a lot easier to deal with.

The Neopets games room.

There are also certain aspects of the site that rely on Flash that seemingly haven't been updated, and are still buggy even with Ruffle.

I looked up the usernames of a couple of people I remembered. Some of those accounts are still there but inactive, some are frozen, and some people are still using the site. I don't plan on reaching out to those people.

I've only been using the site again for a week and there have already been a few updates. The new team clearly got right to work, but it's going to take a while to fix over a decade of mismanagement. At the very least, I'll stick around to the end of August to see what I can accomplish in that time.

Part 2

Originally posted on Wordpress on 25 August 2023

I created two more pets: xSharim, an Aisha (and a resurrection an old pet, Sharim_Paw), and SkyeNeptune, an Acara. I decided on colors for xDarksweep (Fire), SkyeNeptune (Cloud), and xSharim (Electric). Then I started thinking about making another pet, a Wocky who would eventually be painted Faerie.

I'm mostly making money from Trudy's Surprise and selling Battledome drops in the shop. I've received some nice goodies from Tarla's Non-Toolbar Treasures, including a Cloud Paintbrush that I used to paint SkyeNeptune.

Winning a Cloud Paintbrush from Tarla's Non-Toolbar Treasures.

I suspect this particular artwork has not been updated in quite a while, since it doesn't match the current art style of the site. It barely matches the art style used when I was playing back in the day.

I made a "Returning after 14 years" post on the forums and a nice person gifted me a Faerie Quest Fortune Cookie, which guarantees you one Faerie Quest per day for nine days total. I don't think I ever got a Faerie Quest back in the day, but they're the same as what I remember hearing about from other people - you can't use the shop wizard to search for the item the quest requires. Fortunately, the quests ask for specific items, not random ones, and people have made pages listing what the different faeries ask for. And there's a Faerie Quest board in the forums, so you can ask for someone else to search for the item if it isn't listed on one of those pages.

Speaking of the forums, I don't think I ever ventured into them as a kid. I have absolutely no idea how much they have and have not changed.

About two weeks ago, the Settings page was updated and modernized. It isn't an exciting, flashy update, but it was a necessary one. And, surprisingly, I like the new page a lot! It's so much easier to navigate than the previous one. You can even view which avatars you have, rather than having to select them from a text list.

The Avatar selection screen.

As it turns out, you can view the galleries and (classic) neohomes of frozen accounts, so I spent a little bit of time saving all the information I could find from those accounts. Also, if you initiate a Neopet transfer (but do not go through with it) with a frozen account, you can see all the Neopets on that frozen account. I didn't remember the names of the Neopets on two of my old side accounts.

There's a good reason for that. Most of my Neopets had names I'd written down repeatedly - and I'd drawn those Neopets repeatedly. The pets on these two old side accounts? With the exception of one, I never drew them at all! Their names literally came from random number generators, except for the aforementioned pet. That was the only pet whose name I remembered.

Yeah, I basically wasted two accounts back in the day. What a disappointment it was to learn that. I thought I might actually find something interesting.

Then there's one account with a single pet on it, for some reason, probably the last account I made. It also showed me that I had more painted pets than I remembered - a White Wocky and Ghost Kougra. I don't remember getting those paintbrushes at all - all I really remember are the Gold Wocky (_Golden__Paw_) and Mutant Aisha (Sharim_Paw). Though now that I think about it, I don't remember how I painted those two, either.