Gamers Check Back in to Habbo Hotel as Coronavirus Refuge

Launched 20 years ago, Habbo Hotel gained a strong following before it was eclipsed by social media sites such as Facebook by 2010.

Gamers Check Back in to Habbo Hotel as Coronavirus Refuge

Habbo Hotel had gained a strong following among children and teenagers more than a decade ago

Highlights
  • Habbo Hotel was a hit online networking game more than a decade ago
  • It is drawing back hundreds of thousand of players
  • "Our traffic has tripled over the past month," said the CEO

Habbo Hotel, a hit online networking game more than a decade ago, is drawing back hundreds of thousand of players as locked-down millennials look to rediscover a childhood favourite, its Finnish maker said.

"Our traffic has tripled over the past month. The exact user number growth figure is 213% since February 25," game maker Sulake's Chief Executive Valtteri Karu told Reuters, adding that this included hundreds of thousands of new and returning users.

Launched 20 years ago, Habbo Hotel gained a strong following among children and teenagers before it was eclipsed by social media sites such as Facebook by 2010.

With a layout reminiscent of classic video games, Habbo Hotel consists of rooms that players can decorate and where they can meet other players to chat or play games. They can also join virtual parties in search of new acquaintances.

One returning user is Pilvi Pitkaranta, a 23-year-old University of Tampere student who was an active player with her classmates about 10 years ago.

With all student events cancelled because of the coronavirus, Pitkaranta decided to organise a virtual party at Habbo Hotel. About 30 of her fellow students joined the party at the end of March.

"I thought it was a fun idea to organise a party there, also out of nostalgia," Pitkaranta said.

"Some people are finding it very distressing that they have to be home alone and are finding it hard to get things done when stuck indoors."

Habbo Hotel has versions in nine languages, attracting most users in the Americas and Europe, Sulake's Karu said.

"As the world has shut down, the more users have come along," he added.

The game's Finnish maker is jointly owned by private Dutch advertising group Azerion and Finnish telecoms operator Elisa.

It remains to be seen if Habbo's renewed popularity will last only as long as the virus.

As welcome a diversion as Habbo may be, Pitkaranta and her fellow students are looking forward to when they can enjoy some real-life partying, she said.

© Thomson Reuters 2020

Comments

For the latest tech news and reviews, follow Gadgets 360 on Twitter, Facebook, and Google News. For the latest videos on gadgets and tech, subscribe to our YouTube channel.

Further reading: Habbo Hotel
Airtel Opens Access to Premium Kids Content on Xstream App for All Airtel Thanks Members
Huawei Laments US Plans to Crimp Its Global Chip Supply
Share on Facebook Tweet Snapchat Share Reddit Comment
 
 

Advertisement

Advertisement

© Copyright Red Pixels Ventures Limited 2021. All rights reserved.
Listen to the latest songs, only on JioSaavn.com