A virtual pet site – VPS for short – is a website where users can register and adopt a virtual pet to take care of, battle, and play with, and interact with other users, typically on forums, purchase items with the use of virtual currency and play mini-games.
A virtual pet site is a niche and can be classified as a browser game.
Screenshot: NeoPets. (Yeah, I know I’m doing a poor job caring for my NeoPets. I play Virtual Pet Sites when I have time, and there are too many to play!)
The pets that are available on a virtual pet site can typically either be adopted, created, caught or purchased (either with in-game currency or real money). Pets often come in a number of standard colors, with red, yellow, blue and green as the most common colors, and can be recolored using items purchased in in-game shops or cash shops.
Some virtual pet sites offer a wide variety of types of animals as pets, others focus on just on one species. And whereas some virtual pet sites offer realistic looking pets, others offer fantasy-like pets.
Screenshot: One of my pets on Into The Vale.
On a typical virtual pet site, you may find the following features:
- Adoptable Pets
- Virtual Currency/Currencies
- In-Game Shops & User Shops
- User Profiles & Pet Profiles
- Collections, Galleries, Forums
- Virtual World
- Human Avatars
- Battle System
- Breeding System
- Cash Shop
A virtual pet site typically has a virtual world with maps with clickable areas the player can go to. Think of item shops, quests, etc.
Screenshot: World Map on ChibiPaws.
On a lot of virtual pet sites, users can level up their pets (and their pets’ stats). Often this comes hand-in-hand with a battle system.
The most common ways to level up a virtual pet are by doing quests/missions or training it.
A battle system provides the user to use their pet against the pet of the computer or other people’s pets. Often, items can be equipped and/or used in battling. A pet has a health bar and will lose the battle if the health bar is completely empty, upon which the user will need to provide their pet with a potion or food item to restore their pet’s health.
Most virtual pet sites have games with which the user can earn virtual currency or items. Common games are: higher or lower, snake, slot machine, raffles and lotteries.
Screenshots: Games page on IcePets.