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Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Tamagotchis

Tamagotchis were virtual pet keychains that were popular in the 1990s. Can you still find them today, and do they require the same care?
Original Bandai Tomagotchi 1996

Tamagotchis were first introduced by the Japanese toy company Bandai. The name, a combination of the Japanese words “tamago” (which means “egg“) and “watchi” (which means “to watch“), soon became synonymous with the 90s!

The Tamagotchi has left a lasting impact on popular culture and is often remembered as one of the iconic toys of the 1990s. In this article, I will tell you everything I’ve learned about these cute pets – from their origin and rise to where they are today. I’ll also include a few tips to care for your vintage or new Tamagotchi and where to get one. Let’s take a look!

So, What's Exactly a Tamagotchi?

The Tamagotchi is a small, egg-shaped device that has a small screen. On the screen, you can see a virtual pet that you are supposed to care for. You do this by feeding it, playing with it, and cleaning up after it.

In time, and if you take good care of your tamagotchi, it will evolve and grow. If you neglect it and its needs, it could become sick or even die. The device had limited buttons, and you had to check on your pet regularly to ensure it was healthy and happy.

Tamagotchis were popular because they had simple yet engaging gameplay. Of course, there was also an emotional attachment that you’d develop as you cared for your virtual pets.

The Cultural Phenomenon of Tamagotchi

The success of the Tamagotchi led to a wave of virtual pet toys and games, and it became a sort of cultural phenomenon during the late 1990s. As a result, and over the years, Bandai released various versions and updates of the Tamagotchi, each with different features and themes. 

The Original Tamagotchi

Initially, there was only one original Tamagotchi model released.

The very first Tamagotchi was introduced by Bandai in 1996. It was a simple, egg-shaped device with a small black-and-white screen and three buttons. Its success, however, led to numerous variations, spin-offs, and new versions being released in the years that followed. These subsequent versions introduced new features, colors, characters, and gameplay mechanics.

How Do You Turn a Tamagotchi Off?

The method to turn off a Tamagotchi can vary depending on the specific model and version you have. However, these two methods should work for most Tamagotchi models:

  1. Press and Hold: On many Tamagotchi devices, you can turn off the device by pressing and holding down the A and C buttons simultaneously. Hold these buttons for a few seconds until the screen goes blank, indicating that the Tamagotchi has been turned off.

  2. Battery Removal: If you’re unable to turn off your Tamagotchi using the buttons, you can also remove the batteries to power it off. Open the battery compartment on the back of the device and carefully remove the batteries. Keep in mind that removing the batteries might cause your Tamagotchi’s progress to reset, so this method should be used as a last resort.

Vintage Tamagotchis vs New Tamagotchis

If you’re looking for a nostalgic experience or you have fond memories of playing with Tamagotchis in the past, a vintage Tamagotchi might be a great choice – as it can provide a sense of nostalgia and transport you back to the 1990s! Vintage Tamagotchis can also have a collectible value, especially if they are in good condition and from an earlier release. Plus, the gameplay of vintage Tamagotchis is often simpler compared to newer versions. So, if you prefer a more straightforward and classic virtual pet experience, a vintage Tamagotchi might be a better choice.

New Tamagotchis come with updated features, colors, designs, and gameplay mechanics. They may offer more interactive gameplay and additional features that weren’t present in the original models. The newer models also come in a wide range of themes, designs, and characters, and may offer features like connectivity with other devices or the ability to interact with other Tamagotchi owners.

Where To Get the Original Tamagotchi

Ultimately, the choice between a vintage Tamagotchi and a new one comes down to what you’re looking for in terms of gameplay experience, design, features, and personal nostalgia. However, if you’re looking for a collectible Tamagotchi, you can’t go wrong with the original, initial one released by Bandai in 1996. I’m talking about this one:

Original Bandai Tomagotchi 1996

Original Bandai Tomagotchi 1996

Relive the magic of the 1996 Bandai Tamagotchi, where simplicity meets endless fun. Nurture, bond, and create memories with your virtual companion, just like you did back in the ’90s.

  • Hatch and nurture your virtual pet from an egg.
  • Real-time interaction and care for your Tamagotchi.
  • Explore a diverse cast of lovable characters.
  • Compact, portable design for on-the-go fun.
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Where To Get a New Tamagotchi

Vintage Tamagotchis can be harder to find, especially in good condition. Newer models are more readily available through various retailers and online platforms. You can buy new Tamagotchis from various sources, both online and in physical stores.

Updated Tomagotchi Line (Multiple Colors)

Updated Tomagotchi Line (Multiple Colors)

Rediscover the joy of virtual pet care with the New Tamagotchi Line, where vibrant colors meet modern technology to create an unforgettable experience. Whether you’re a long-time fan or a newcomer to the world of Tamagotchi, you’ll love these.

  • Immerse yourself in vibrant and colorful visuals.
  • Experience enhanced gameplay with new activities.
  • Connect with other Tamagotchi owners for interactive fun.
  • Build your own collection with a range of designs and characters.
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Vintage games and toys have a special place in many people’s hearts, bringing back memories of childhood playtime and simpler times. In this series of related articles, you’ll be able to explore the world of vintage games and toys, delving into the history of our most beloved classics, such as My Little Pony, G.I.Joe, Polly Pocket, Masters of the Universe, and much more.