Casual Virtual Worlds

The Walt Disney Company acquired Club Penguin today for $700m ($350m cash + $350m earn out). All eyes are now on Puzzle Pirates creator Three Rings whose earlier rumored $450m valuation maybe more attractive to Sony.

Philip Rosedale incorporated the soon to launch SL Voice feature in his demo at the AlwaysOn Stanford Summit 2007. His follow-on session with Irving Wladawksy-Berger, Chris Sherman, Chris Melissinos moderated by Jaron Lanier titled How Real Is the Virtual Web is recommended viewing.

Reactions to the Club Penguin deal over on Techmeme and the panel discussion at AlwaysOn give a flavor for what casual virtual worlds and virtual goods hold in store for the future. Interesting times indeed.