Remember the good old days? Back in school, age still in single digits when the only gizmo you needed in your pocket didn’t make phone calls, play music or tweet? Obviously I’m getting over nostalgic about the humble tamagotchi. A small, badly pixelated creature that relied on your care and attention around the clock. Thankfully, for those of us who haven’t quite grown up yet, now we’re in our twenties. There’s an app for that.
Allow me to introduce Hatchi. I meant to review this game last year when I first got hold of it, but now I’m glad that I waited because it has really flourished from a stripped down, fairly basic tamagotchi simulator, to a much more fun and wholesome game thanks to multiple add-on’s and continued developer support which takes the distilled awesome and throws in a ton of new and modern features.
First lets take a look at the basic and more simple side of Hatchi. All the features we remember from our childhood remain, your little creature will grow over the course of about a week with several stages of evolution. Evolution isn’t totally random and can be dictated depending on how you’ve raised your young Hatchi. As well as growing up other old staples include feeding, playing, washing and sleeping, neglect a Hatchi for too long and not only will he get mucky and stink up the joint but there is also the risk of them becoming ill and even dying.
Rather than adding too many new features the game has primarily built upon the older, existing features which makes for a great experience. Keeping your Hatchi entertained has two main features, active and smarts. For those who may be too lazy when it comes to Craig for your virtual pet, there is an instant fix option ether allowing Hatchi to read a book or play with a bouncing ball. If you want to get a bit more out of it though, there is a variety of mini games ranging from tic-tac-toe through to a Rock Paper Scissors variant. Feeding now has a variety of different foods, your Hatchi will have a favourite and least favourite food to be discovered through trial and error. As well as the basic foods such as ham, bread and pizza you can also purchase various food stuffs which will have a range of effects on your Hatchis well being.
The games currency system doesn’t rely on you investing real money, although this is an option. Instead your success with the mini games earns you coins dependant on your scores. The currency system works pretty well, the store has plenty of stuff to purchase which can make your life a lot easier, whether it be food for quickening the process of playing with Hatchi, or pills which will instantly fill a specific trait, it’s loveless Hatchi care.
New features mainly relate to the renewal of a Hatchi. Whereas the old tamagotchi simply killed your little creature and had you reaching for a reset paper clip, Hatchi allows you to make a range of choices. When your Hatchi dies you have the option to revive him with the rather expensive resurrect Hatchi product, bringing your little friend back from the beyond and he won’t be a zombie or anything! His tombstone will remain in the graveyard though meaning you can mourn should you choose to leave him in afterlife it’s time to choose a new companion. Here there are two choices. First is to start a new with a brand new egg and little ball of cute, pixelated love but you also have a second option. The Hatchi adoption agency allows you to select a slightly older Hatchi to adopt, the Hatchi’s in the centre change every 24 hours with three up for grabs at any one time. This option does mean spending a few coins but can be more rewarding than simply grabbing an egg. It isn’t all doom and gloom though, should you get bored of your Hatchi there is no need to sit around and wait for him to die. You can know release your creature as long as it is fully evolved, or you purchased a fake ID, you can send them to live in the Hatchi forest and visit them whenever you please.
Overall, Hatchi has become a really solid game that keeps you coming back for more. It builds on the nostalgia, doesn’t kill too much time in one go and has plenty of features, with updates coming regularly enough that it stays fresh rather than becoming tedious. One omission we’d love to see is a battle option. While it has been speculated that this will come in the form of a separate app sometime in the future, it is the only feature that we really want to see.
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- Great for nostalgic gamers
- Not too time consuming, you can spend as little or as much time as you want playing
- Creative new features
- Sharing of Hatchi’s through game centre and the adoption centre would be better
- Lack of a battle feature leaves out a big original feature