What was Subetax?

The original drawing - Copyright Keith Kurson
The original logo on the site – Copyright Keith Kurson

One social networking site that’s flown a little under the radar is Subetax. The social networking site was Similar to Neopets and Gaia Online allowed users to create their own human avatars and care for virtual pets. The site was created back in 2006 by Keith Kurson, and was run by some paid staff and a lot of volunteers. There were over 150,000 registered users on the virtual pet site Subeta as of mid 2007, where users could own their own virtual pets and care for them by feeding them and ensuring they stay healthy.

This site describes exactly what happened to Subetax, and where you can find it now. We’ll also be taking a more in-depth look at the history of Subeta, while also taking a look at the hurdles the website has faced; such as the time a lot of avatars were infected and turned into zombies. Subeta was designed for young people to connect and network with other people from around the world. It taught teach them practical skills such as marketing and managing their money, but there was also somewhat of a darker side to this website, and it could leave some users second-guessing Subetax.

What was it all about?

While the website was designed to cater to younger people, there was no need to be a teenager to enjoy it. Members must had either been at least 13 years old or had their parents’ permission to create an account. The website was completely free, but you could make a small donation to keep the website going and unlock some additional features.

The games community was a varied one, encompassing many demographics. Every member of the site could have five virtual pets at the most, with the restriction lifting to ten pets for people with Gold (paid) accounts. Gold members could unlock another ten slots by using the Mystical Donadak Plushie or the Mystical Motre Plushie, which could be bought from the cash shop. They could also be traded to other users through the Trade Center or bought in an auction. Signing up to your regular account grants you 5,000 Subeta Points (SPs). These SP were the virtual currency used and it is used to buy the items you need for your pets. SPs can be used to adopt pets, customize them, and enjoy the website in full.

Pets had to be cared for and fed properly to stay healthy and smart. Your pets could have their own pets in the form of minions – or play friends. There were many different ways to earn additional SPs – such as playing games, participating in surveys, and restocking. Restocking was the most common method for earning SP points. It allowed users to create a shop and sell their items to other players on the sites. Players were able to visit any shop they wanted and purchase the items on sale. You can think of it as a legal form of black market, or just the very best in capitalism.

There were a range of forums to, where players could interact and chat with other members of the website, joining discussions on just about every subject. Members could also join or create their own Cult. A cult is was small subgroup open to anyone who wants to join. Cults could be based around specific music types or something similar to that. If someone was interested in the same thing, they could join the Cult and meet others as they spent time on the site.

From a visual standpoint, the youthfulness, basic feel and appearance of the website may work for some, but it could be a turn-off if you’re someone who prefers high-level designs. Avatars in Subetax were created in the form of anime characters, while the pets in the game where based on real animals and other mythical creatures, if only loosely.

Once in a while there were events that could affect the pets and their human avatar owners. We’ll get into these in the next section where you’ll learn that one of these events caused a major infection that stirred up a lot of trouble on Subetax.

The game has resurfaced on another site and is fairly active. Search them out and join up!