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Online gamers fete Hello Kitty's birthday

Hello Kitty character turns 34, and to celebrate, Sanrio organizes an in-game celebration in its Hello Kitty online MMORPG.

Sanrio Digital

Believe it or not, Kitty White (aka Hello Kitty), has been aging along with the rest of us, and Saturday marks her 34th birthday. Judging from her look, however, it seems the alternately much-loved and much-reviled feline icon hasn't really grown up much and is still an appropriate representation of childlike cuteness.

To help celebrate this occasion, Sanrio Digital has organized a week-long in-game celebration in the Hello Kitty Online massively multiplayer role-playing game. The event includes a series of quests and events, including an in-game guild contest that lets players convert online efforts into real cash donations for charity.

Based on the popular Sanrio characters, Hello Kitty Online transports players into the cute and cuddly world of Sanrio Land and is fully integrated with official Sanrio social Web site SanrioTown.com, which utilizes blogs, e-mail, video sharing, games, and more to create a digital and social experience accessible at any time, even in-game.

The game is currently in a closed beta phase and will shut down on November 8 to allow the development team to continue work on the game and prepare for the open beta version. Current players, however, will retain their characters and certain benefits in future versions of the game.

Earlier this month, Sanrio organized a massive in-game event where gamers could participate in the building of virtual New York city.