Five short years is all we were to get to enjoy Club Penguin Rewritten, it seems. The fan-made remake of one of the most popular children’s MMOs is under investigation by the City of London Police. But which dastardly mastermind is to blame for the removal of this seemingly innocuous game? Well, purveyor of all things children’s entertainment Disney. Of course.
But it is perhaps not that surprising after all. Disney Canada was the original publisher of the Club Penguin, an MMO aimed at kids way back in 2005. For many this was the inaugural online gaming experience, presenting a wholesome environment to fashion future multi-player personas. The game went from strength to strength, enjoying life in the limelight. It all ended a decade later, in March 2017 when it was replaced by the mobile game Club Penguin Island. Finally, this too was pulled in September 2018.
The fan-made game in question, Club Penguin Rewritten was a fan-made remake of the original MMO. It launched in 2017, and since its launch has enjoyed a continuous stream of new content and updates. That all ended in the early hours of this morning.
The announcement came via Club Penguin Rewritten’s official Discord server, titled simply “Rewritten”. Server administrator, Thorn, said simply that the server would be taken down “immediately”.
Short notice from Thorn, community manager of CPRewritten of the imminent takedown
The shutdown follows a full request from Disney, with all of the assets of the game now in possession of the investigating body. Anyone trying to access the website is met with a notice from the City of London Police. This states the domain is currently under investigation by the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit.
But with over 10million accounts created for this fan-made epic, it’s not surprising there’s more than a little disappointment out there. This is a blow for fans the world over. Club Penguin Rewritten was more than a spiritual successor to the original game. It expanded on the story in many ways and was even to host a virtual concert for singer/songwriter Soccer Mommy. But this isn’t the first time Disney has acted against Club Penguin clones, so perhaps this was inevitable.
But why has Disney acted now? The servers for the original game have been offline for over 5 years. So why is Disney so adamant that no one else steps in where they consciously stepped away? Could this foreshadow a return of the original MMO? Who’s to say. But with the MMO genre going from strength to strength, the temptation must be, well, very tempting.
Big fan of the original game? As ever, let us know in the comments below if you’d welcome a return of Club Penguin proper.
“Video games are great. I should know, I’ve played some.”
Olly S, July 2020