NeoPets are about as badass as you can get. At least they used to be. I haven't been there in YEARS so I don't know what its like.
But yeah, I remember playing that stuff like an addict when I was 11. Honestly if it wasn't for NeoPets I may not be as acquainted with computers as I am now (it was the first thing that got me onto the internet).
I used to spend hours and hours at the public library down my street playing NeoPets before I got my own computer... so yeah... it's pretty awesome.
I liked neopets originally. Sure, it was cutesy, sure it was kid oriented, sure, the forums were hard-core moderated as was any on site mail you sent out.
But they had cutesy furry versions of a lot of the games I played as a kid. I saw defender, asteroids, space invaders, and tons more. I was even somewhat into it after I got a rainbow ferry quest, and won the right to paint any one of my pets any color I wanted.
Then the sad day came, when the neopian masterstroke was to be played out. There were a few adverts here and there. A few companies (mcdonalds came to mind) had small outposts in the neo-universe, but even these i'd just abuse for the free neopoints and move on. But then there were MORE.
In came a banner ad. Now you can't do anything without those. Then came the add under the character manipulation window. Then came the popups.
It's as if the creators of neopets decided to make a really awesome kid-themed free gaming arcade with moderated chat on the internets. Then word of mouth spread, more people joined, and more people thought it was neat. A lot of people got into it. Then once enough time had passed, they decided to sell out and start shoving adverts down everybody's throat.
Good for them as a business figuring out how to turn the max profit, but to the abyss with them for ruining something good and fun with this critical mass of age-targetted BS. I turned it on the other day and saw "GET YOUR DEGREE IN SIX WEEKS NOW!!!!" and "LOW INTEREST HOME LOANS! REFINANCE TODAY!!!!!".
It was like splicing ads from time or newsweek, into content from highlights or ranger rick.