BBC Tackles the Virtual World

The BBC and Children’s BBC has launched a beta test for Adventure Rock, a children’s virtual world that presumably stems from the case study of the same name initiated through part of a £500K grant in July. Adventure Rock was the first announced virtual world for the CBBC back in January. Adventure Rock has targeted December 2007 for a full release. According to an Agence France-Presse, the world will be completely free with neither advertising nor premium access charges. And to increase safety, the world will be chatroom-free. “As a public broadcaster, it’s
paramount to make sure children are as safe as possible,” Marc Goodchild, head of the BBC’s Children’s Interactive and On-Demand, told a MIPCOM conference when announcing the world. [via The Straits Times]

One of the interesting aspects of Adventure Rock is that it doesn’t seem to be tied to any particular show or brand on the CBBC. Instead, there’s an ongoing story on the website that users can follow around with. With neither a advertising or subscriptions, Adventure Island seems to be almost entirely about bringing users to the CBBC website–it was once called CBBC World–and continuing the research of the CBBC and the University of Westminster. It also looks like the CBBC is trying to find ways of “continuing the interactive theme,” as an overall brand.

The BBC with Ragdoll also commissioned NiceTech to develop a virtual world for the upcoming show Tronji, but that isn’t set to launch until Spring 2008.

Virtual Worlds News: BBC Launches Children’s Virtual World

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