Neopets adds more outlets for revenue

Nickelodeon & Viacom Consumer Products introduces the first products from its new line of Neopets at Target stores and www.target.com, and will be showcased at Toy Fair next week in NYC. The initial launch includes products from Jakks Pacific (Series 1 collector plushes), all of which will tie into the new multiplayer game Neopets Key Quest, and Enterplay (Fun Paks, Trading Cards). Each new product provides Neopets members that purchase them with special codes that unlock exclusive content online. The full line is slated to rollout at retail in fall 2008.

Cynthia Turner’s Cynopsis – Cyn Kids 2/15/08

Wow, this is an interesting addition to the Neopets format. It started as a free site, added a second layer of economy & purchasing with their microbuys (which caused a bit of a revolt at the time, and lost them a good percentage of users), and now they’re doing the product buys??

All roads leading to the site have peppered in tolls, except for the one free road of obnoxious, sketchtastic ads.

Hey, getting paid to produce stuff is all well and fine and needed. You pay for a babysitter, right? Otherwise you end up having the creepy old lady next door watch the kids, and that’s not always a great choice (as someone who was taught piano for free by a creepy old lady who smelled of moth balls and scared the crap out of me, let’s just say I never showed a vested interest in piano again). Let’s see them take a chunk of those HORRIBLE ads of their site, and maybe create a virtual environment for roaming– but of course, the world-for-roaming isn’t necessary.  The system seems to be working for them.  I’m just not a fan of their in-your-face ads that occasionally take kids to other browser sites that are “skinned” to look like Neopets, but aren’t.  Personal choice, I suppose.

Overall, it seems like a natural trend for Neopets.  It makes me wonder how successful their micro-buy system is.  I see loads of active kids with pimped out avatars, which means it must have some sort of reaction.  But is the $$ enough to sustain?  Curious.

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