At the time of its launch in 2003, Disney’s Toontown Online was the first and only MMO catered towards families. It received numerous awards and attracted a great deal of popularity throughout its lifetime, however due to management changes and declining popularity of subscription-based games, Disney closed the doors of Toontown on September 19, 2013.
Toontown Rewritten, a free-to-play revival of the game, was officially announced on the same day that Disney’s Toontown Online closed. The team behind it sought out to not only restore the online world that so many kids, teens, and parents alike had cherished for the past 10 years, but to pick up right where Disney left off and continue developing the game as if it never closed.
Now, Toontown Rewritten has provided non-stop, free-to-play, classic cartoon fun for over half of a decade. The game has grown to nearly 2,000,000 registered accounts with an average of 15,000 unique players per day as of March 2019, and an annual convention which attracts as many as 500 attendees from around the world. The team has successfully not only brought the game back online, but continued Disney’s original vision and grown its community for more than half of the original game’s lifespan.
My Work in the "Tooniverse"
Since its founding on August 20, 2013 — the date that Disney announced that Toontown Online would be closing — I have served as volunteer Creative Director and Public Relations Lead for Toontown Rewritten. Here are a few of responsibilities in these roles:
- Setting direction of content creation and team management to ensure that the game exceeds standards of quality, safety, and fun set by Disney for Toontown Online.
- Designing, managing, and programming new game expansions.
- Creating engaging and memorable interactions with the game’s community.
- Coordinating annual “ToonFest” convention.
If you’d like to see some of the specific projects I’ve worked on for Toontown Rewritten, check out the “My Projects” page of this website.
Toontown Online holds a special place in my heart — not only as my first and most beloved game design project, but as the game which sparked my curiosity to learn about computers and inspired me to pursue a career in game design. Quite frankly, it’s my favorite game of all time!
I was introduced to Toontown in 2003 after seeing an ad on Disney Channel and begging my parents to let me try a free trial. I spent too many hours to count with my friends, my parents, and my grandmother building up our Toons, as well as building our relationships both in and outside of the game. I’ve been blessed with an opportunity that I by no means deserve: achieving my dream job at age 15, and being one of the lucky people who gets to bring the slapstick joy of Toontown to a new generation!
Throughout all of the projects I have the pleasure of working on, past and future, Toontown is always a constant reminder to find the fun in everything I do, rather than letting the “Cogs” of everyday life take it away. A game which makes an impact like that is worth preserving.