Should You Adopt a SuperPoke Pet ?
We all want to enjoy lovable pets around the house. After a hard day at work, nothing is more rewarding than a cute fuzzy animal greeting us at the front door. After a hard day at school, cuddling a furry pet makes us happy. An adorable kitty, puppy, or bunny makes life worth living. Sometimes it’s simply not convenient or practical to adopt a real live pet. Horses take up a lot of space. Dogs and cats insist on being fed regularly. Medical care becomes expensive.
There is an alternative.
An online pet, also referred to as a virtual pet, can be almost as enjoyable as a living pet. Hamsters are fun, pythons are fun (and challenging), but a SuperPoke Pet is always there for you, even if you neglect to feed it or take it to the veterinarian. The Super Poke Pet web site offers completely free SuperPoke pets for adoption. Anyone longing to adopt an virtual creature can visit the site and sign up for a pretend critter.
The SuperPoke Pets home page is a cheery little place that encourages you to jump into the adoption pool. A scrolling window chronicles the activities of other adopters. Click on the Play Now button to begin the adoption process.
A variety of pets are available. Some are recognizable to anyone who ever visited a farm or a zoo. Some are mash-ups of biological oddities that might make awesome pets in real life. You can click on any of the cuddly little avatars to begin your adoption process. We chose the turtle, which immediately became excited to become part of our family. The little critter shrunk back into its’ shell and asked the inevitable question “Shell we play?”. Since we love bad puns as much as virtual pets, this seemed like a match made in digital heaven.
After naming our Super Poke Pet, we were asked to sign up for an account. We provided a valid email address and created an account on the web site. Oddly enough, we were able to continue the Super Poke Pet adoption process without being required to validate the email address. Most web sites insist on knowing who is accessing their site, especially when a (virtual) creature is involved. We could have been part of a virtual pet syndicate with less than honorable intentions.
We finally get to see our adopted pet
After ‘registering’, we were given unfettered access to our tiny turtle. The little guy (we know it’s a guy because it’s named nicomp) lives in a sparsely furnished one-room apartment. He has a chair that’s not actually engineered for turtle anatomy. He has what appears to be bamboo shoots growing up the walls in the background. Taped to the wall is a poster depicting his SuperPokePet friends, who hopefully will stop by for a visit and bring along some housewarming gifts.
A pig in an elegant top-hat appears in the upper left-hand corner of the room. He provides encouragement and direction should we be unsure just how to care for a virtual pet. His first message assures us that we will have opportunities to earn SPP Points and Coins. Perhaps we may use these currencies to feed and clothe our new responsibility.
Email Arrives from SuperPokePets
Eventually, email arrived from the adoption agency, also known as SuperPokePets. The email offered an opportunity to claim a 1000 coin welcome bonus. We clicked on the link and were transported to the SuperPokePets web site. We were immediately charged with a ‘Quest’. To fulfill the quest we needed to feed our little turtle.
We Feed the Turtle
Our turtle’s initial feeding was accomplished by clicking on a yellow button. The quest window closed and we were transported back to our turtle home room. At the bottom of the window appeared a cute menu: Feed, Tickle, Clean, and Playdate. ‘Feed’, ‘Tickle’, and ‘Clean’ are verbs, but ‘Playdate’ is a noun: it’s all good because turtles can’t read anyway.
Free Furniture Arrives
After the initial feeding, we noticed a table in the room. A free table had been delivered while we were eating, perhaps. The table and the chair don’t match, leading us to suspect that our adopted turtle is a college student who can’t afford good furnishings just yet. On the other hand, the lack of pizza boxes scattered about the room may disprove our theory.
We plan to continue caring for our new adopted pet from different computers in various locations. The SuperPokePet world seems to have much to offer beyond feeding and tickling. Perhaps we will form a cadre of home-schooled virtual turtles who will one day start their own web site for the benefit of online animals everywhere.
The Turtle Goes Shopping
Knowing how much turtles love to shop, we took little nicomp on a short trip to the accessory store. After some discussion, we settled on a tree stump as our initial purchase. Unfortunately we were rebuffed at checkout: not enough money. This confused us, since we were sent 1000 coins or something when we received our confirming email. Oh, well.
We put the tree stump back on the virtual shelf and went home. The turtle wouldn’t have been able to climb onto it anyway.
SuperPokePets seems mostly harmless so far. The adoption process is free and easy. The graphics are somewhat engaging. The entire experience is delivered in Flash, which is also free and probably offers no threat to your computer. Unlike other virtual pets such as Guffins, you do not need to download and execute a program on your computer.
You should be able to visit with your pet on any computer that supports the Adobe Flash player, which constitutes the vast majority of personal computers and smart phones. We used Windows XP and the Firefox browser and we experienced no apparent problems. If your computer does not have flash installed, ask your IT support person for assistance in installing the program.