Millsbury: Free Virtual World for Your Child Without the Expense of Webkinz
People who are on a budget and can't afford to constantly feed their children's Webkinz habit may be surprised to discover that there are many free virtual worlds for kids to explore. One of these sites is Millsberry, a virtual city from General Mills. The world is completely virtual, meaning that there are not any plush pets or dolls for kids to play with like there are for Webkinz or Nintendo Pets.
While some parents may object to the advertising and name brand items available in some of the shops in Millsberry, other virtual sites do have the same sort of thing going on. For example, Webkinz World displays sidebar ads for its e-store, for new pets and for the gold membership it offers.
In Millsberry, kids earn virtual money to buy furniture and accessories for their homes, clothing for their character and pets and supplies. Some of the ways for kids to earn "money" include playing games, holding yard sales to sell virtual furniture, decorations and other things they don't want to keep, and answering poll questions.
One additional way for kids to earn virtual money is to open a savings account at the downtown Millsberry Mercantile Bank. The bank pays daily interest for money the kids keep in their savings accounts. The more they save, the higher the interest rate. This is an excellent way for kids to learn about the importance of real-world savings accounts; although, since they have to collect interest daily or lose it, the bank is not completely realistic.
Another nice feature of Millsberry world is the emphasis on creating a well-rounded character, called a buddy. The buddy stats show the health, intelligence, civics, fitness and nutrition levels for the character. When kids play games or do activities that raise awareness about these things, their stats go up.
Overall, despite the fact that when a child's buddy steps into the grocery store, there are a lot of Yoplait and General Mills cereal products to choose from as well as generic foods, the game doesn't promote General Mill products too heavily and is a fun and entertaining option for parents who don't want to fund a serious Webkinz habit for a child who wants to hang out in a virtual world.