A Club Penguin Childhood

Put your flippers up for one last hurrah

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A Club Penguin Childhood

Club Penguin was a staple of many childhoods, and it will be sorely missed.

Club Penguin was a staple of many childhoods, and it will be sorely missed.

Photo by Elinda Xiao

Club Penguin was a staple of many childhoods, and it will be sorely missed.

Photo by Elinda Xiao

Photo by Elinda Xiao

Club Penguin was a staple of many childhoods, and it will be sorely missed.

By Elinda Xiao

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I

 remember what I used to do in my elementary school summers, during those rare windows of free time.

My mom would allow me thirty whole minutes of computer time, and I wouldn’t waste a second of it, dashing to the clunky family laptop as fast I as could go, waiting impatiently as my mom entered the password, and then immediately typing in the web address of the greatest game of all time.

Club Penguin.

To a younger me, there was nothing better than the familiar jaunty music that started every time my server loaded. Naturally, I knew all the tips and tricks for the mini games: wait for the Mullet in Ice Fishing, make Candy Pizza in Pizzatron and Mine Surfing by continuously mashing the “up” button.

Naturally, I nagged and whined enough that my parents eventually bought me a Club Penguin membership. With this purchase of $5.99 (billed per month), my wonderland was opened up to me even more. Now I could dress my penguin up! Now I could buy the cool multicolored puffles, and not stick to the lame blue and red puffles. I was now a part of the elite.

Club Penguin was different than the other social games of the 2000s. In my opinion, it was the best of the best; it was cute without being kitschy, it was appropriately funny without being insulting with its humor.

When my parents started going to a divorce lawyer and dragged me along with them, the lawyer took pity on me and let me play Club Penguin in the lobby instead of making me sit in the office. When I was staying home from school, sick and miserable, I played Club Penguin to make myself feel better. On the last day of precollege in San Francisco, my summer friends and I made a joint Penguin that we lovingly named “KoolFieri.”

I’ll miss the Club Penguin. Even if I haven’t played it often recently because of classes and tests, it was still an integral part of my childhood, like some people have Yu-gi-oh or Pokemon.

Only time will tell if Club Penguin Island (the mobile-only app) will be a worthy successor. It’s going to have a big legacy to live up to, that’s for sure.

But, when we wave tearfully goodbye to Club Penguin on March 29, keep the age-old saying in your mind:

Keep calm, and waddle on.

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