Zula USA launched its kids-science show The Zula Patrol in 2005 and has had a successful run on channels including PBS, NBC and Telemundo. But the company is trying to extend its brand with a virtual world for kids, ZulaWorld, based on the science themes of the show. According to VentureBeat the virtual world, appropriately named ZulaWorld, launched earlier this month and has since signed up about a thousand users.
We’ve written a number of stories about the impressive growth of virtual worlds, but TV shows launching virtual worlds around their programming is still rare. What’s also interesting about ZulaWorld is that it is far from just a promotional vehicle for the show. With subscriptions that reach as high as $49.99, Zula apparently views it as an additional revenue stream. Kids can create avatars and play in the world for free, create their own alien, buy a spaceship and chat with friends. But the real capabilities come to those who pay for VIP memberships, which enables kids to create secret handshakes, visit friends in their spaceships, fly to other worlds, buy a parking space for your spaceship, among other features. VIP membership costs $5.99 for one month, $29.99 for six months, and $49.99 for one year.