The characters are colorful and simplistically designed creatures based on animals, objects, or people. However, the story behind the games remained the same: Tamagotchis are a small alien species that deposited an egg on Earth to see what life was like, and it is up to the player to raise the egg into an adult creature. Gameplay can vary widely between models, and some models, such as TamagoChu , require little to no care from the player. Gameplay[ edit ] Upon activating the toy, an egg appears on the screen.
After setting the Tamagotchi unit's clock, the egg will wiggle for several minutes, and then hatch into a small pet. The player can care for the pet as much or as little as they choose, and the outcome depends on the player's actions.
The first Tamagotchis could only be paused by going to set the clock, effectively stopping the passage of time in the game, but in later models a pause function was included. Pets have a Hunger meter, Happy meter, Bracelet meter and Discipline meter to determine how healthy and well behaved the pet is. There is also an age and weight check function for the current age and weight of the pet.
Filling up the Hunger meter can be achieved by feeding the pet a meal usually a loaf of bread or a snack usually a piece of candy. Filling up the Happy meter can be achieved by playing mini games with the pet or by feeding it a snack there are no limits to this, but there are limits to how many meals can be fed.
Mini games vary between versions, but mainly involve guessing which way the pet will turn left or right within 5 tries. The Discipline meter can be filled by pressing the "scold" option when a pet calls for attention but refuses to play or be fed a meal.
The pet will leave droppings around the screen from time to time, and can become sick if they are not cleaned up. Before the pet goes to the bathroom, it will make a face and stink lines will appear around it. If the player activates the toilet icon during this animation, but before the pet has gone to the bathroom, the pet will use a toilet instead. When done repeatedly, the pet can be potty trained. If the pet gets sick, a skull icon appears next to the pet as it sits still at the bottom of the screen, with an unhappy expression.
The pet can become sick for a number of reasons such as overfeeding of snacks or failing to clean up droppings. The pet can die if sickness is left unchecked. The pet can be cured by pressing the "Medicine" option. Usually a pet will not play or be fed a meal when sick.
Pets would often fall asleep during the night time. Originally players had the option of manually turning off the light when the pet fell asleep it would turn on the light by itself when it awoke. In order to raise a healthy pet, players were encouraged but not required to turn off the lights when the pet fell asleep. In recent versions, the pet turns off the light on its own when it went to sleep. Recent versions also allow waking the pet for a short time once it has fallen asleep.
V5 had the three children look outside on the window when they wake up in the morning and before bed at night. Life cycle[ edit ] The pet goes through several distinct stages of development throughout its life cycle. Each stage lasts a set amount of time, depending on the model of the toy, and when it reaches a new stage, the toy plays a jingle, and the pet's appearance changes.
The pet can "die" due to poor care, old age, sickness, and in a few versions, predators. The pets life cycle stages are Baby, Child, Teen, and Adult. Later Tamagotchi models have added a Senior model. Usually the pet's age will increase once it has awakened from its sleep time.
Poor care can cause a pet to die, but it can also die of old age. If an old pet dies without producing offspring, the family line has ended. The Japanese Tamagotchi toys usually feature a ghost and headstone when the pet dies, but English language versions have been changed to show an angel at death, or simply a floating UFO to indicate its return to its home planet.
Often at times it will show the transition graphic, after which it will show the pet appearing to be sick, but with the skull flashing, beeping as it flashes. It then will show a happy version of the pet flashing with a longer beep, with an egg on the right side of the screen, after which it will show the pet as an angel as indicated above.
Pressing the middle button shows the age at which the pet died. After the pet dies, one can restart from the beginning by pressing A and C. New mechanics[ edit ] In recent models, the player earns currency called Gotchi Points while playing games, and can use the currency in an in-game shop to buy different foods, toys, accessories, or even room decorations for the pet.
Connectivity[ edit ] Using infrared communication, two players can link their toys and the pets may form friendships, play games, exchange gifts, and even marry. Since then, many subsequent models have also been able to interact with the E-Tamago or Tamatown websites by using alphanumeric codes generated by the toy to log into the website's Flash game. After generating a code, the toy remains paused until the player either enters a logout code or cancels.
The player may play minigames in the town to earn Gotchi Points, or use Gotchi Points to buy items in the town shops. To transfer points and items back to the toy, the player signs out of the Flash game and is given a code to input back into the toy. Unlike previous models, the Tamagotchi 4U does not have infrared, which consequently caused it to sell rather poorly. Two players with a male and female pet may link their toys and allow the pets to develop a friendship and fall in love.
Once the pets have raised their relationship meter sufficiently, the pets may marry. The player can also choose to have their pet marry a random pet brought in by the "Matchmaker. Since the parent will automatically guide the baby's life, the only care it needs from the player is medicine in the case of sickness.
After a few days the parent will leave, and the player is left to care for a new generation. This can continue for as long as the player manages to care for the pets. The Chou Jinsei Enjoy Tamagotchi also introduced the idea of character "families" or "groups. A character of one group cannot grow into an adult of a different group, and if two pets of different groups marry and have an egg, the baby will be of the female's group. X, the latest Japanese release, has a notable change to this feature; in this release, Tamagotchi offspring have merged traits from both of their parents.
Other[ edit ] With the many different versions of the toy, there are other less common mechanics that influence the pet's growth, including but not limited to friendship with the player, varying types of skills, and career. The Chou Jinsei Enjoy Tamagotchi also introduced Skills, which can be built by playing certain games with the pet, or using certain toys or foods bought from the E-Tamago or in-game shops.
Having certain skills can help the pet obtain a career, and if built up high enough, can unlock special characters. Releases[ edit ] When we were stuck on talk of the spectacular 3D graphics of Mario 64 and racing games, we saw a huge hit in the form of Tamagotchi — a tiny key chain boasting pictures made up of no more than 10 or 20 dots.
At that time, I thought that Mario 64 had lost to Tamagochi [ sic ]. Miyamoto quickly adds in English: List of Tamagotchi releases As of , there have been over 44 Tamagotchi versions released since their creation in , several of which were only released in Japan. Along with the original Tamagotchi, the first wave of Tamagotchi toys included Christmas, angel, and ocean themed versions.
The newer versions began in with the Tamagotchi Plus, and the most recent version is the Japanese Tamagotchi M! Internationally, in , Tamagotchi Friends is the latest model, featuring a grayscale screen and a new NFC feature that enables owner to "bump" their Tamagotchi to trade items. An upgrade, called Tamagotchi Friends: Dream Town Digital Friend, was released in It has additional features, but can only be bought at online stores due to a lack of retailer interest in the product.
A sequel to the game, "Tamagotchi L. Angel", was released on February 26, Video games[ edit ] Since its debut, Tamagotchi has made its way onto several gaming platforms. Several early games feature gameplay similar to the original toys. A few party-style games appeared on major consoles, along with the Corner Shop series of simulation games and a few role playing games for the Nintendo DS.