National Geographic Brings Out The Animal In You

Illustration for article titled National Geographic Brings Out The Animal In You

The adventures of Prince Stinkyninja the bunny would not be possible without National Geographic's Animal Jam, an online animal kingdom filled with learning and adventure. They say it's for kids, but Prince Stinkyninja says otherwise.


Animal Jam transforms children and curious adults into animals living in the exotic lands of Jamaa. Players first select an animal type, with rabbits, monkeys, wolves, tigers, pandas, and koalas to choose from. Then a name is generated, using a three-level roulette wheel mechanism, which will keep the names relatively clean.

Once you are in game you can explore the lands of Jamaa, playing mini-games to earn gems that can be used to buy clothing, furniture, or new character slots. Scattered about the game are leaf icons that can be clicked on to learn fun facts about the flora and fauna of Jamaa.

And of course, as an online game, there are other players wandering about, ready to chat with you about important nature facts, like what a dork you are, or how much furries suck. Parental controls are available to keep your small child from mingling with the mean video game journalists scoping out the joint as undercover rabbits. By default, chat is disabled.

Right now the game is completely free-to-play, though subscription plans are coming soon, giving paying customers access to premium content, such as new animals and more lands to explore.

It seems like a friendly little place. As I was sitting in the main area, a guide came on and walked the players in the area through earning a Bunny Commendation. Players had to hop, run around a fountain, and then follow him to the beach, after which they were given bunny hats to wear and told they were bunny scouts.

Illustration for article titled National Geographic Brings Out The Animal In You

That's more game master interaction than I've had in nearly six years of World of Warcraft.

Check out the game for yourself at the Animal Jam website. Remember to bring your kids.


Mr. Anomaly

Is this a serious article? Because I'm getting a sarcastic vibe from it.