Neopets tries to get back to its roots and move forward after restructuring due to JumpStart closure
With Neopet’s previous owner Jumpstart Games closing on July 1st, the virtual pet site’s ownership has moved around quite dramatically once again. After briefly moving over to an old JumpStart subsidiary, Fluffy Dog Studios, Neopets is now officially under "World of Neopia, Inc.", a new independent company created following a management buyout deal with JumpStart’s previous owner, NetDragon. The group made a press release to Medium on the 17th of July.
Under new leadership, headed by former NetDragon employee Dominic Law, and a round of $4M in new funding from various investors, the Neopets Team are aiming at a new "Neopian renaissance". To start, they plan on trying to refocus on the main Neopets site and getting the old Flash games to work on the emulator Ruffle. They also have long term plans of hopefully converting the site fully to HTML5. They also plan to expand out into mobile gaming spaces and trading card spaces with “World of Neopets”, a re-launch of “Neopets: Island Builders”, and a TCG to be issued by Upper Deck in 2024.
The Neopets Team seem to be curtailing back from their previous attempt to focus on NFTs and are discontinuing support for the Neopets Metaverse project. There does seem to be some skepticism, though, as people have noted Dominic Law was in charge of these projects. His Linkedin lists that he was the Chief Metaverse Officer from December 2021 to July 2023. The press release seems to be phrased as "no longer focused" rather than definitively "no more of it, period" as well.
However, since the death of Flash, fans of the virtual pet site have really been looking for a refresh to restore the games and system of the site. Hopefully this will be a step in the right direction.