Without this 25-year-old pixel chicken, would there be any later Gundams?
Although I learned later that the “sacred plan” was bought in the store at the entrance of the school for more than ten yuan.The vast majority are pirated copycats.
They cannot make me a selected child, nor can they come out of the screen as a rolling beast. But it still reminds me of the qualities of courage, friendship, honesty and love.
Regardless of the infinite scenery of Bandai today, if there was no such a sudden emergence of the “egg”, then Bandai will not exist, it is unknown. And this egg has a “strange” transliteration name: Tuoma Gezi.
Because it looks likeeggAnd the combination of electronic watches, so: Tamago + Watch = Tamagotchi
As the mother of the “sacred plan”, Tamagotchi was a product launched by Bandai in November 1996, which opened the era of handheld analog electronic pet feeding for the first time.
On November 23,It celebrated its 25th birthdayIn recent years, we have become more accustomed to calling it “electronic chicken.”
The functions of the first-generation Tamagotchi now look very, very simple, a simple black and white screen, three buttons and a pet image composed of simple pixel squares, that’s all of it.
But at the time, it was undoubtedly a disruptive product. Beautiful shell, simple gameplay but no surprises. The keychain design style is also very convenient. You can put it in your pocket and tether it to the strap of your schoolbag. For many children, it has been “accompanied day and night”.
The gameplay of Tuoma Gezi is actually very simple. Just like we keep pets in reality, feeding, bathing, playing, cleaning up the feces, watching it grow up day by day, and it will “die”.
When it is hungry or needs to clean up the feces, it will make a sound to remind you that it is time to go to work. Is it similar to your cat owner?
In the era when the Internet is not yet developed, such electronic pets are an important way for children to entertain, satisfy curiosity, and even participate in a “life” process from birth to growth and death for the first time.
Different from the fixed growth model in the imagination, one of the biggest advantages of Tuoma Gezi is that it has different pet images (the human is an alien creature, so it can grow strangely).
What kind of pet you can get depends entirely on how you raise it. Different behavioral interactions will affect the results of Tuoma Gezi when he grows up, such as:
Feeding can increase its weight and fullness, and its mood will also improve;
Playing can greatly increase its mood, but it will speed up the pet’s “digestion”;
If the feces are not cleaned up in time, the pet will get sick and so on…
This kind of gameplay is the same way as the now-popular nutrient-oriented games, and it provides players with a high degree of freedom.
It can be saidRandom growth is its core. The Tamagotchi trained with care is likely to be healthier and better (higher grade) than the casual “stocking” style. You don’t even know when it will grow up. It may not change after watching it for a long time, but it sleeps. When I woke up, I found that I had grown from an infancy to a growth period.
And if the pet dies, the children will feel sad because they have not taken care of it.
However, another feature of electronic pets is also highlighted: After all, they are not pets in reality, so there is basically no ideological, moral and legal burden. Some children will be sad because of the death of their pets, but some children will take the initiative to let Tamagotchi “die”.
Because it is difficult for children to know what it will look like in this random situation. Some players will feel that their pets are not perfect or cute enough to satisfy themselves and choose to start over.
In short, with this “raw eggs + growth” model plus the simple yet cute appearance of eggs, Tamagotchi has been welcomed by players (girls) for a while.
In order to cover the market more comprehensively, only half a year later, the Tamagotchi with additional “combat elements” specially designed for boys is also available, that is, the Digimon Dragon machine mentioned at the beginning.
If there is a destiny and there is an unknown script in it, then the series of events triggered by Tamako in Bandai will be full of incredible drama.
Like in Digimon“The Selected Child”, Tuoma Gezi existed because of all generations, and also saved all generations.
Around the 1990s, Bandai, which had achieved great success in the toy field, broke into the game industry after a business reorganization, and even went with it.NintendoIt’s a smooth journey by grabbing the market and acquiring the animation company that will develop the IP “Gundam” in the future.
Unexpectedly, Japan’s bubble economy shattered in the late 1990s, and Bandai was not spared and faced losses several times. At the time when it was at a loss, another Japanese gaming giant SEGA (SEGA) reached out to Bandai…
Moreover, Sega is facing the “double pincer” of Nintendo and Sony, and it is also in a period of depression.
what is it now? Merger?
This decision seemed to be a “win-win” decision at the time: Sega needed Bandai’s animation industry and toy copyrights to create new IP to counter Sony; and Bandai needed “life-saving money”…
At this moment, several employees of Bandai:Akihiro Yokoi, Takeichi HongowithShinban SubkiStand up.
The Tamagotchi, originally planned by Akira Yokoi, did not immediately receive a huge response when it was first released in 1996. Bandai had also been skeptical about this matter before:Can such a simple thing impress the player?And the source of inspiration for the plan turned out to be just like keeping pets…
At this moment, the process of Sega’s acquisition of Bandai is proceeding in an orderly manner. From any angle, this is like Bandai’s “dying struggle”…
In 1997, Tuoma Gezi suddenly “broken the circle” into the group of female high school students. At that time, there were newspapers andtelevisionIn reporting and publicizing Bandai’s new products. When I heard that there is a Tamagotchi spot store, some people would rather line up one night in advance to buy it. The scene is not as good as the previous few years.iPhoneOn sale.
There is even an “Electronic Chicken Trusteeship Center”, dedicated to people who are busy with work and have no time to take care of Tuoma Gezi…
And this boom, Bandai has to thank one person: Namie Amuro. Tamagotchi successfully broke the circle through her TV show, and went viral in the country overnight, directly letting Bandai escape from the financial crisis.
Sega, who had been very confident in mergers and acquisitions, was instantly upset. Sure enough, Bandai immediately announced the postponement of the merger plan, and in May directly announced the cancellation of the merger plan with Sega.
Subsequently, Bandai launched the “Boy Edition” Tama Gezi, which is the first manga of the Digimon series published in the predecessor of “Shounen Jump”, the predecessor of the well-known Shueisha manga magazine “Weekly Shonen Jump” in the summer, and its popularity and popularity have skyrocketed. .
Bandai thus turned over and regained a new life, laying the foundation of today’s game and toy empire in one fell swoop.
If things ended in this way, it would be too much like the Shuangwen bridge in online novels.An unparalleled young man suffered a sudden change, and almost died in a desperate situation. After a desperate fight, he ushered in a new life and gradually reached the peak…
But the reality is not cool.
The technical threshold of Tuoma Gezi is really not high, so it is very easy to imitate. After the popularity of electronic pets, a large number of imitation products have been ushered in a short period of time. Bandai’s production capacity cannot meet the rapidly increasing market demand, so many players have turned to copycats.
While Bandai and Yokoi Akihiro have to invest in research and development and production of Tamagotchi, they are struggling to deal with the rights protection actions brought about by a large number of imitations. In 1998, the long-term imitations occupying half of the market affected the reputation of electronic pets. Coupled with some negative social influences at that time, the craze for Tamagotchi came and went quickly.
So even if Bandai realized that something was wrong with the developments and stopped the production line in time, the products that had previously invested a lot of money to produce in order to compete with imitations for the market have still all become dusty things in the warehouse.
It is said that they directly spent 6 billion yen to process the 2.5 million eggs.
Good guy, this has just made two years of money, and lost another year…
Just as people often suffer losses to grow, Bandai has been much calmer in adjusting production and shipments after self-reflection, such as coordinating and managing the demand and supply of various dealers or stores.
Until 2004, Bandai, who finally figured out how to develop electronic pets, launched the second-generation Tamagotchi.
Subsequent electronic pets have been fully upgraded in terms of hardware, and an “online” function has also been added, allowing players to exchange pet information. At the same time, the advantages of its own animation IP and the image of electronic pets have been closely linked, and Tuoma Gezi has returned to the public view…
In fact, most of the electronic pets that have come into contact with the post-90s generation in China belong to the renewed trend of this generation of products.
Despite the rapid rise of the Internet era, Bandai did not directly give up this product that has special meaning to them.
By the time iterates to the fifth generation, players can already cultivate the “Tama Gezi family” on one machine at the same time. Each Tamagotchi has different hobbies and personalities, and family members will also be different. Even Tamagotchi of different genders can get married and have children…
In 2008, the sixth generation of Tamagotchi successfully got rid of the black and white pixel screen and announced that it has entered the era of color screens; by the time of the ninth generation, it was able to cooperatecell phonePerform online operations.
Of course, there are linkages with some brands, such as: Hallo Kitty, EVA and so on.
It’s just that Bandai seems to work very hard, but the wheels of the times are still rolling forward, and Tamagotchi soon left behind. Even if it once swept the world with sales of 70 million+ units, it has to face a problem: people (children) have more and more diversified entertainment options.
The Internet, increasingly sophisticated electronic games, smart phones, etc. have all made Tamagotchi lose its competitiveness.
But the only thing that is no longer popular is the Tamagotchi, not the electronic pet.
If you look at the history of electronic pets, you can discover one thing that you have been pursuing in addition to form, function, and fun: emotional interaction with humans.
It is not only to solve the so-called spiritual loneliness and companionship emotional needs, but the reason why the electronic pet model has always existed may be another part: the subtle trust relationship between humans and virtual pets.
Just like we treat cats and dogs, they can live even if we let go. But if you treat it better and hope that your pet can grow up happily, they will also express their dependence, joy and love on you.
The same is true for electronic pets.
Take the classic “QQ Pet” as an example. You click on it with the mouse and it will give you feedback; you also hope that it can go to school happily; it will feel happy when it expresses joy to you.
Even if happiness is only a moment, even if it is just a string of codes.
The same is true of “Traveling Frog”, which was on fire a few years ago:If you prepare well for its travel, it will reward you with celebrity films.
And even if it goes out for a long time, it will eventually “go home”.
Electronic pets are always accompanied by rise and fall. They can accurately meet people’s emotional needs, but they cannot provide long-term and true satisfaction. Just as QQ pets were officially removed from the shelves in 2018, the players who stayed at the end had to say goodbye to their “pets” one after another, and then sighed that time passed by.
In order to celebrate the 25th birthday of Tuoma Gezi, Bandai’s “Tama Gezi Smart” is more like a commemorative stamp, letting the former “poop shoveling officers” miss the goodness of the past and wish this alien creature in the distance. Everything will be fine in the future…