Long before Pet Society, Happy Pets, Petville and Zooworld came to existence, there was already a virtual pet that took storm back in its inception,Tamagotchi. Yesterday was the Japanese digital pet’s 15th year in existence.
Handheld, mini-egg shaped, some buttons – make for the perfect kids’ pets that they can carry around. Owners will have to feed, raise, discipline and clean up their pets starting from it being hatched – hence, the name. Tama is egg in Japanese and uocchi is watch, the two words resulted to the portmanteau “Tamagotch.” Every time the pet needs something, it will beep to remind the owner of his chores, not taking attention will result to the pet getting unhappy, sick, angry, undisciplined or worse, it will die. (Much like your Facebook pets only they don’t die unless you delete the data.)
The gadget was not met without criticisms though. Kids tend to bring them to school and with a need for constant care, there’s beeping and disruption in class, less concentration in school classes and activities and of course, kids tend to get attached. If a pet dies, that would be hard for them. Then there’s also the mating issue.
(A much older Tamagotchi version and a newer one. From google images)
There have been over 44 Tamagotchi versions released through the years, it has spawned video games, films, animated videos and series and music as well. Despite its popularity with kids, it has been named as one of the worst inventions by Time Magazine – for reasons stated above. ^_^
Anyway, when was the last time you fed your Tamagotchi?