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Gaming History You Should Know – History of Tamagotchi January 10, 2021

Posted by Maniac in Gaming History You Should Know, Uncategorized.
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Happy Sunday everyone, time for another Gaming History You Should Know, where we highlight some of the best independently produced gaming history videos from across the web. Today, we’re going back to the 90s to tell a story about a well known gaming property that influenced an entire industry.

Most kids of the 90s remember Tamagotchi. Released by Bandai, it was a simple LCD game that allowed you to create and care for a virtual pet. You could feed it, clean up after it, and play simple games with it. The graphics weren’t the best, even for the time, but the hardware was inexpensive and designed around the concept of portability and interactivity.

YouTube Channel Billiam, who I’ve seen produce some incredible videos about older electronic devices from the late 90s and early 00s, made this great video about the Tamagotchi you all need to check out. Maybe after watching it you’ll see the appeal of the gameplay, or if you’re like me you’ll find the technology behind it quaint. Check it out below:

I know that the video showed a very simple game that might even look primitive in the standards of today’s smart devices. However, let’s be honest, your smart device may be powerful, fast, and have a pretty screen, but it requires constant recharges over the course of a week. By choosing to use simple hardware, Bandai gave the Tamagotchi long battery life, a simple but clean interface, and a potential for device interconnectivity using IR or NFC.

Since its release, virtual pet games have mostly moved to smartphones and tablets. However, it’s hardware design lives on and we’ve seen companies ranging from Sony, Sega and even The Pokémon Company try to copy it.