Fans of the globally popular Pororo the Little Penguin television series will soon be able to own the widely beloved animation characters as NFTs (non-fungible tokens) and join other enthusiasts at a virtual Pororo theme park.

The Sandbox, Hong Kong-based Animoca Brand’s subsidiary for decentralized virtual gaming, announced a partnership with ICONIX, one of South Korea’s leading animation companies. ICONIX also produced the popular children’s animation series Tayo the Little Bus, and Titipo Titipo.

The partnership kicked off with the release of NFTs of the characters in Pororo the Little Penguin — Pororo, Crong, Loopy, Petty, Poby, Eddy, Rody, Harry and others. These character NFTs will be packaged in The Sandbox LAND, which allows buyers to own space in the virtual universe. However, there will be only one unique NFT portraying the main character Pororo, which will be auctioned on NFT marketplace OpenSea. The Sandbox LAND will put 374 LANDs paired with Pororo character NFTs on sale on Sept. 23. Users can purchase LAND using The Sandbox’s own currency SAND on LAND’s official website

In addition, ICONIX will purchase its own set of LANDs in The Sandbox metaverse, for which it plans to build a virtual theme park based on the animation. A role-playing game (RPG) utilizing Pororo’s intellectual property is also in its early planning stage, which Facbros, a gaming studio affiliated with The Sandbox, will be developing. 

“We’re very pleased to be able to introduce our characters and universe of Pororo to the metaverse which continues to gain global interest. By this partnership, we look forward to our Pororo being loved by gamers and creators all around the world,” said Jung-Gu Cho, Director of the Media Business Department at ICONIX.

Meanwhile, Animoca Brands, Hong Kong’s unicorn blockchain game developer, has been the leading advocate in merging NFTs with gaming. The company caused a ripple in the Asian gaming industry by publishing the first blockbuster NFT game, CryptoKitties, in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, in which players adopt, raise and trade virtual cats.

More recently in April 2021, Animoca partnered with Atari to launch NFT collectibles of the Atari’s coin-operated arcade game capsule from the 1970s and ’80s. The company continues to build its portfolio of NFT games with The Sandbox, Crazy Kings, and Crazy Defense Heroes, with contents incorporating popular brands such as Formula 1®, Marvel, WWE, Garfield, Snoopy, Power Rangers and now Pororo. 

Animoca’s The Sandbox works on the assumption that blockchain gamers are creative. The platform will allow players to create their own unique content — such as customized games and game items — with the Pororo NFTs. “We’re very happy to see Pororo, a popular Korean character, having a global presence to join The Sandbox platform,” said Yohan Lee, Korea Director for The Sandbox. “We expect the gamers to come up with a gaming content that was never seen before using Pororo-based NFTs.”