January 2012:
Pixelmood has moved! TamaTalk is grateful to announce that we are taking over the content from pixelmood.com (with permission, of course). Please make sure to update your bookmarks! Pixelmood is now located at http://www.tamatalk.com/pixelmood

September 2011:
As many of you might have noticed I'm no longer updating this website. I've moved on to other hobbies. Since Pixelmood still attracts visitors I decided to ask Tamatalk if they wanted to host and maintain this website and they kindly offered to do so!
I hope you'll enjoy your stay at Pixelmood (^_^).
This websites contains some information about Tamagotchis and Virtual Pets. When they first arrived in 1997 I used to have three pets: Digimon, Lovely Puppy and 8-in-1 minipet. I think these toys got my attention because of my fondness of pixel images and Japan. Actually I had forgotten about them, until I got addicted to Neopets and a friend of mine gave me a Tamagotchi in 2003. It got my interest again and I decided to make a collection out of these cute little critters. My real pets tend to get a bit jealous, but don't worry, I still love them more (^__^). Since most of these pets have got their own personality, I decided to dedicate this website to them.

Most of the pictures on this site were made by Bandai, where Aki Maita came up with the idea for a virtual pet. She interviewed high school girls to find out what features they would like to see in a virtual pet. The Tamagotchi design as we known it had to be made up first, on the left you can see some of the prototypes.

The idea of casing the pet in an egg was Aki's, since 'Tamago' means egg in Japanese and 'tchi' means cute or lovable - and so the name developed from the shape of the toy. For Bandai the toy came at the right time, the company had just been hit by net losses of more than '43 million in the period of 1996. They were an instant hit; people queued for hours all over the world to obtain one of these lovable eggs for their children. In the first year alone, Bandai figured that one was sold every second. Bandai has sold over 40 million Tamagotchis worldwide.

When the Tamagotchi was just released the Japanese people were anger to get their hand one one of those eggs. When a store announced that a thousand or so of the gadgets would be made available, Japanese children and adults travelled hundreds of miles to camp out on the street, hoping to buy one. Other people resorted to the underground market, where a Tamagotchi sold for 50 times its street value of 1,900 (about $18). In other words, up to $1,000 for a little plastic egg.

The first Tamagotchi was sold in 1996 and in 2004 Bandai decided to launch a new one, this time with infrared. Literally translated from Japanese it means "loveable egg" or "egg watch" Tamagotchi is not a game! Tamagotchi is your very own, pocket sized virtual creature from Outer Space and must be cared for as you would with a normal pet.

Tamagotchis were small, plastic eggs containing a tiny computer with a simple black and white LCD screen. The egg was attached to a keychain, to encourage owners to always keep their Tamagotchi close by. The eggs had different colors and designs on them, making them a collectors' item.

There were many Tamagotchi spin offs released, including Tiger Electronics' GigaPets. Bandai themselves released several different variations on Tamagotchi, like the Angelgotchi and the Ocean Tamagotchi. Although most Tamagotchis have the same basic ideas (happiness and hunger meters, discipline, etc), each different kind of Tamagotchi had their own unique game, food, and sometimes had varying icons on-screen.