|“||Just because a company pulls a plug out of a game, doesn't mean it has to die.||”|
Club Penguin Rewritten was a popular remake of the online-based, massively multiplayer role-playing game, Club Penguin. Since its launch on February 12, 2017, Club Penguin Rewritten had accumulated over 11 million accounts.
On February 26, 2018, it was announced the game would close on March 4, 2018. After a month of closure, the game was announced to be relaunching sometime in April 2018. On April 26, 2018, the game was relaunched.
In preparation for the discontinuation of Flash Player by the end of 2020, Club Penguin Rewritten went down at 8pm Greenwich Mean Time on December 31, 2020. On January 21, 2021, the game was reopened.
On April 13, 2022, the game was closed again due to a request from Disney, and the website was voluntarily handed over to the United Kingdom's Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit.
After the announcement of the imminent closure of Club Penguin, Club Penguin Rewritten was founded to preserve and bring life back to the game that was a part of many childhoods.
Club Penguin Rewritten, commonly abbreviated as CPR and CPRewritten, was an unofficial recreation of the original Club Penguin, created to replicate the original's experience. In its early years, Club Penguin Rewritten strived to be accurate and true to the original and classic Club Penguin, but in its later years, the game's focus shifted to focus on the environment of Club Penguin from 2010 to 2012, adding modern and entirely custom content to improve the experience of the game as well.
Early Growth and Legal Issues
Within 30 days of the game's founding, the game had accumulated 10,000 registered accounts and had its own wiki.
Following the closure of Club Penguin on March 30, 2017, the playerbase of Club Penguin Rewritten skyrocketed in the following weeks. The game reached 50,000 registered accounts on April 2, 2017, and later reached 100,000 registered accounts on April 5, 2017.
On October 10, 2017, Disney Interactive filed a complaint against Club Penguin Rewritten. Due to this, the game's original domain, clubpenguinrewritten.pw, had to be changed to cprewritten.net, which took place five days later on October 15, 2017.
Shutdown and Relaunch
On February 8, 2018, an administrator called Codey was demoted from his position following an internal staff argument regarding a recent update. As a result, Codey allegedly began to harass and threaten staff members with his friends, utilizing methods such as swatting and doxxing.
On February 22, 2018, the game was announced to close, but this announcement was later retracted. However, the threats continued and the game eventually closed on March 4, 2018.
During this time, the staff team consulted with cyber-security experts and learned how to better handle internet safety and security. The game was eventually announced to be returning, and officially re-opened on April 26, 2018.
Further Growth and Controversies
After the initial closure and re-opening, the site saw further growth and controversies.
On June 2, 2018, the site reached 2,000,000 registered accounts. The occasion was commemorated with the release of two item unlock codes.
On New Year's Day 2019, the Admins and the rest of the Community were celebrating the new year. Some Administrators reportedly became drunk while celebrating, which was reflected in their behavior as they played inappropriate songs and used explicit language on the official Discord Server. The chat was later purged and a new one was created, with administrator Joee apologizing on the behalf of the administrators.
On January 11, 2019, the site reached 3,000,000 registered accounts.
On April 20, 2019, the site reached 4,000,000 registered accounts.
On October 22, 2019, the site reached 5,000,000 registered accounts.
COVID-19 Pandemic and Further Controversies
During the release of the Fashion Party, Club Penguin Rewritten saw its then highest player count of around 3,800 users online concurrently.
On April 16, 2020, Club Penguin Rewritten held a successful concert in collaboration with American singer Soccer Mommy in promotion of Soccer Mommy's new album, Color Theory. The concert was the first of its kind and was viewable on all servers. Along with this, the record for highest player count of users online concurrently was rumored to be broken once again during this event, with a total of 4,900 to 5,000 users.
On April 21, 2020, the site reached 6,000,000 registered accounts. This meant that 500,000 new players had signed up in the span of around one month, which may have been due to the large influx of people playing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
On May 14, 2020, Club Penguin Rewritten received a Digital Millennium Copyright Act takedown, due to significant events going on in the Club Penguin Private Server community at the time. Disagreements between the moderators and the administrators (specifically Thorn) began after the administrators refused to allow the moderators to speak on the behalf of the administrators. In protest, the majority of the moderator team at the time chose to resign. This caused an uproar in the community, with many calling for administrator Thorn to resign.
Due to the outrage, the Discord server was closed temporarily from May 17 to May 30, 2020. The Music Jam 2020 was also postponed from its start date of May 21 and eventually began on June 11. Following the incident, there had been numerous arguments about Club Penguin Rewritten's censorship.
Despite multiple controversies and the resignation of many staff members, Club Penguin Rewritten continued to operate and still saw greater growth. On August 2, 2020, the site reached 7,000,000 registered accounts.
On November 9, 2020, staff member Moo confirmed that the highest concurrent player record on Club Penguin Rewritten was between 4,900 and 5,000 players online concurrently. However, the date for this occurrence is unknown, but has been speculated to have occurred during the Soccer Mommy Concert in April 2020.
On December 2, 2020, the site reached 8,000,000 registered accounts.
#CPR2020, HTML5 Launch, and Even More Controversies
Due to the discontinuation of support for Adobe Flash Player in December 2020, it was announced that Club Penguin Rewritten would be converted to the programming language Hypertext Markup Language 5 (abbreviated as HTML5). The project was first confirmed in July 2020 and HTML5 testing began on July 16, 2020. Testing was paused on November 19, 2020 to conduct maintenance. Players could access the test servers during the maintenance period by clicking on the word "January" on the maintenance screen.
The HTML5 transition began on December 31, 2020, and lasted for several days. The game was expected to reopen in January 2021.
On January 15, 2021, Club Penguin Rewritten announced future language support for Portuguese and Spanish players as well as plans for future mascot visits to be scheduled. Spanish Servers were implemented shortly before the game's eventual closure in April 2022.
On January 21, 2021, Club Penguin Rewritten reopened after 21 days of maintenance.
On February 28, 2021, Zaseth, a developer for the staff team, was removed from the team due to harmful actions and use of harmful language towards other people in different communities. A day later, further controversies arose when it was revealed that Thorn was well aware of him doing such activities as early as 2017. Along with this, former administrator hagrid warned others of his actions the same year. Gravix, another developer, was aware of his actions as early as 2020. This led to another uproar on social media, with many questioning why the staff team would hire him despite knowing about his behavior and actions.
The Club Penguin Rewritten Support Twitter account released a statement regarding these issues. In addition to addressing these issues, they announced that thorough background checks would be made for any potential staff candidates. Additionally, any developers hired would no longer receive a public role, meaning that they would have little to no interaction with the community. No further comments by the staff team were made.
Rockhopper's Daily Treasure and Further Developments
On April 7, 2021, the site reached 9,000,000 registered accounts. A new unlock code was released everyday for nine days once the milestone was reached.
On May 27, 2021, the site announced a new way for players to obtain exclusive items called Rockhopper's Daily Treasure. Players can obtain these items by watching an advertisement. The team claimed that this was done in order to fund the development of the HTML5 client. However, this sparked controversy among the community, with many players stating how earning more funds for the game was unnecessary due to the fact that there are already several advertisements on the website. Along with this, several players have made reports that they've witnessed inappropriate advertisements. The team's responses to these issues stated that watching advertisements is only voluntary, and that players may report to staff members if they come across an inappropriate advertisement.
On June 25, 2021, Club Penguin Rewritten developer Gravix said that development on the Portuguese and Spanish language servers was almost fully complete, with only a few performance issues left to handle. The links for the Spanish and Portuguese clients were also quietly revealed the same day, although not everything in said links had been fully translated.
On August 24, 2021, the site reached 10,000,000 registered accounts. To celebrate the occasion, the 10M Players Celebration Event was held until September 5, 2021. During the event, several mascots visited and gave out backgrounds that had not been available for a long period of time. Along with this, a new unlock code was released everyday for ten days once the milestone was reached.
On February 7, 2022, the site reached 11,000,000 registered accounts. The occasion was commemorated with an unlock code.
On April 8, 2022, the site introduced Spanish servers for players. To celebrate, players could claim the Spanish Hat by going to the Town on any Spanish server during the Spanish Servers Celebration Event. Portuguese, French, and German servers were also planned to be added to the game in the future.
On April 13, 2022, the staff of Club Penguin Rewritten shut down the site effective immediately due to a full request by Disney. The team has voluntarily given control over the website to the police for them to continue their copyright investigation. The site has not been relaunched since then.
In the same day, Club Penguin Mountains, a website and blog about Club Penguin, was given the following statement from the United Kingdom's Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit: “Following a complaint under copyright law, PIPCU have seized a gaming website as part of an ongoing investigation into the site. Three people were arrested on April 12 on suspicion of distributing materials infringing copyright and searches were carried out. They have been released under investigation and to aid with the police investigation, they agreed to sign over the website to the control of PIPCU.”
On April 29, 2022, the Club Penguin Rewritten website was abandoned from the London Police, leaving the page blank with text '404' as default. On July 1, 2022, the domain expired and going to the website gives a webpage not available error.
On July 27, 2017, Club Penguin Rewritten suffered a DDoS attack. This led to server maintenance from July 27, 2017 through around mid-August.
In January 2018, Club Penguin Rewritten suffered a database breach, affecting almost 1.7 million unique email addresses alongside IP addresses, usernames and passwords stored.
On July 27, 2019, exactly two years after the 2017 DDoS attack, Club Penguin Rewritten suffered a database breach affecting over 4 million accounts. Following this, the staff released an announcement on the website.
- Club Penguin Rewritten was originally planned to just be an archive for Club Penguin accounts.
- DJ Maxx, Jet Pack Guy, Klutzy, Rory, and Shellbeard were made as mascots exclusive to Club Penguin Rewritten as custom content.
- Club Penguin Rewritten is not based on any specific timeline, but is usually said to be based on the 2010-2012 era of the original Club Penguin, hence why there were a mix of modern and classic themes, the latter more prominent, in the game.
- There were parties that were announced prior to the game's unexpected closures. The party that was supposed to take place after the Penguin Play Awards 2018 was the Puffle Party 2018 which was set to begin on March 7, 2018, but instead, it was replaced by the Waddle On Party due to the game's closure. However, due to the game's relaunch, the Puffle Party 2018 was continued on May 9, 2018 until May 16, 2018. In 2022, upcoming parties (the Hollywood Party, Medieval Party 2022, and Western Party 2022) were similarly canceled due to the game's closure.
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