The Tamagotchi "digital pets," first prominent more than 20 years ago, will make a comeback on the iPhone with "My Tamagotchi Forever."
"My Tamagotchi Forever" had a soft-launch in select countries at the end of 2017, and is set to arrive on both the App Store and Google Play worldwide this spring. The game's website asks users to sign up in advance of the March 15 launch date to get a chance to become the inspiration for a brand new character, which will be added to the game.
Tamagotchi is a cultural artifact of the '90s. First introduced in Japan in 1996, the Tamagotchi was a "digital pet," which existed as a pocketable electronic device that the user had to "feed" and otherwise keep alive. The product made its way to the rest of the world the following year, and remained popular into the early years of 21st century.
The Tamagotchi brand has survived in the years since, with various releases for such systems as the Nintendo Wii and DS, although most of those releases have been Japan-only. But with another Japan-derived phenomenon of the 1990s, Pokemon, now into its third year as a mobile app colossus, Tamagotchi is headed to the iPhone as well.
"20 years since the West first fell under the Tamagotchi spell," says the website. "The phenomenon is spreading love to a whole new generation of caring fans with its first ever free-to-play mobile game."
The minute-long trailer for the game positions it as "the classic game for all generations," while showing one particular player playing the game as a child in 1997, as a preteen in 2004 and now as an adult, along with her look-alike daughter, while making clear that the quality of the graphics has improved dramatically the last two decades.