Tamagotchi Pets Are Back In The Form Of An App

By Brittany Gehrett , Updated May 20, 2013 06:39 PM EDT

In the late 90's it seemed like everyone had a virtual pet. Tamagotchi, Nano Pets and Giga Pets were all the rage, and getting taken away pretty frequently by teachers vying for their students attention during class. I speak from experience.

Tamagotchi virtual pets are making a comeback for their 16th birthday on a slightly bigger (and more advanced) screen. NamcoBandai Games Inc has just released the Tamagotchi L.i.f.e. app for iPhones and iPads. The game has been available for Android for about a month and is already popular, with over 600,000 downloads.

In case your forgot how Tamagotchis work, there is a full tutorial on how to care for your virtual pets as soon as the app in installed.  The ping-pong ball sized, egg shaped computer with key-chain attachment looks just like the real hand-held toy in the app. There are settings to change the color of the shell and background, or you can change the view and fill the entire screen of your phone. 

The game is similar to how it was before. You can feed them, give them medicine, clean up after them, and now play a game of "Rock, Paper, Scissors."  Playing games with the pet increases it's happiness and keeps it healthy. 

The Tamagotchi pets look just like they did in the 90's; black, pixelated little blobs, but you can progress when properly raising a pet. If you are taking good care of your pet, more options become available such as different colors and types of pets.  You can even show off your virtual companion by posting pictures through a direct link to Facebook.

Real pets are fun, but also a huge responsibility. You have to clean up their messes, spend money on food and vet bills, and give them massive amounts of attention. So if you want to experience what it is like taking care of a pet without the hassle of having to hire a pet-sitter while you're on vacation, the Tamagotchi app is the way to go.

The Tamagotchi L.i.f.e app is free on Android, iPad and iPhone, or $0.99 for the ad-free version.

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