Turner-owned TV network and online game location Cartoon Network has announced that it is developing its first massively multi-player online game (MMOG) in a partnership with a Seoul, South Korea-based Grigon Entertainment (Seal Online).
According to the company, The Cartoon Network MMOG will launch in North America in Spring 2008 and specifically target the kids' interactive gaming market, presumably in a similar way to titles such as Disney's ToonTown Online. The game will be free to download, with subscription and micro-transactions available to players to enhance the gaming experience. New areas for exploration and play are planned and will be added regularly over a span of several years.
The developer, Grigon Entertainment ,is best known for successfully developing and launching several online games in Asia, including Seal Online, a "light-hearted RPG" that has been successful in Asia - localized versions are available in Korea, Japan, Taiwan, China, Indonesia and Thailand.
The companies also noted that Cartoon Network's MMOG will be compliant with the Children's Online Privacy and Protection Act (COPPA) and will "offer a safe gaming environment for players", an important reassurance for any interactive online environment in today's media climate.
Jim Samples, Cartoon Network executive vice president and general manager, commented: "Not only will kids be able to play with their favorite characters like Mac and Bloo, Ben 10 and the Kids Next Door, but they will also be able to develop their own online gaming personalities and interact, virtually, with other players in a safe way."
He continued: "This MMOG is a key part of Cartoon Network's growth strategy, and is an important complement to our mobile, broadband and our existing online business. With the MMOG, mobile content, our Web sites and, of course, our linear network, Cartoon Network is always on for kids."