LucidLyes

How to make Tamagotchi for Game Boy more like a real Tamagotchi

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Hi guys! I just thought of a way to make the Tamagotchi GB game more interesting and more like having an actual Tamagotchi. Just thought I'd share it somewhere.

 

The problem with the GB version is that time flies by too quicly compared to a real tamagotchi, but too slowly so that you get bored staring at the screen doing nothing. One argument I've often heard/read (and I thought so myself too) was that no one will leave their Game Boy on 24/7 just to simulate a real tamagotchi. Well, yesterday I decided to give it a try. I downloaded an emulator on an old phone I had and decided to leave it on, turning the phone to a tamagotchi.

I quickly realised that even doing that would be annoying, because the tamagotchi will annoy you for about an hour, calling you every 5 to 10 minutes, and then he'll fall asleep and you won't hear from it for about an hour. So even playing the game that way is kind of annoying.

That's when I realised that you didn't *have* to leave the Game Boy on all the time. Since time goes by faster in the game than in real life (I've timed it, a real-life hour is equal to about 3 minutes in the game), then just turn the game on for one in-game hour every hour.

A lot of players have invented new games based on old video games by inventing new rules to follow (e.g. the "Beat Zelda without the sword challenge"). Well, here is a game that definitely needs similar measures!

So here are the rules I've invented for myself:

1/ Do not let the in-game clock pass the current hour in real-life (you should take note of the date you started your tamagotchi, the number of days printed on screen should match the number of days since you've hatched the egg).

2/ If for some reason you couldn't turn on the game for many hours, you should turn it on and let it sit until the in-game clock catches up. During this time you can forbid yourself to take care of the tamagotchi (to make it more like an actual tamagotchi that you can forget).

That's all!

I think the game becomes much more interesting by playing it this way, let me know what you think! :)

Edited by LucidLyes
Changed the title
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1 hour ago, LucidLyes said:

The problem with the GB version is that time flies by too quicly compared to a real tamagotchi, but too slowly so that you get bored staring at the screen doing nothing.

I'm a big fan of Tamagotchi GB, myself, and I personally feel that this is one of its greatest strengths - it's a more time-respectful implementation of the concept. :) I haven't had the time to run a conventional virtual pet lately, but have been playing the Game Boy game, with its Ocarina of Time-style accelerated timeframe, when I've had the chance, and it's been great.

That said, this is a super-interesting idea, and I'll be very interested to see how you and others get on with running the game this way. I don't think that anything necessarily needs changing, but it's certainly great to have a solid ruleset in place for it! I think that the Game Boy game is a Tamagotchi release that deserves more notice and coverage within the community, and anything that gets people to give it a look is a big plus, so kudos to you for that! :D After all, it was the game that debuted a lot of features that would become commonplace later, and it's also the main ancestor of the modern-day colour devices.

Incidentally, there is another solution, if your Japanese knowledge is good enough for it: At least one of the game's two Japan-only sequels did run in real-time, thanks to having a battery-backed real-time clock that's installed in the cartridge. Because of this, it would keep going even when the cartridge was out of the Game Boy - and if memory serves, one of the sequels' cartridges also has an LED that will flash to alert the user to in-game calls, as well, again even when it's out of the Game Boy. The sequels have even less recognition in the virtual pets community, so I'd love to know if anyone looks into this more. I've tried, but my Japanese is almost non-existent, and I don't like the idea of trying to navigate hidden meters and obscure almost-hidden mechanics in a language that I barely know - that's already tricky enough with the first game's iffy English translation! :lol:

Edited by Penguin-keeper
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36 minutes ago, Penguin-keeper said:

I'm a big fan of Tamagotchi GB, myself, and I personally feel that this is one of its greatest strengths - it's a more time-respectful implementation of the concept. :) I haven't had the time to run a conventional virtual pet lately, but have been playing the Game Boy game, with its Ocarina of Time-style accelerated timeframe, when I've had the chance, and it's been great.

That said, this is a super-interesting idea, and I'll be very interested to see how you and others get on with running the game this way. I don't think that anything necessarily needs changing, but it's certainly great to have a solid ruleset in place for it! I think that the Game Boy game is a Tamagotchi release that deserves more notice and coverage within the community, and anything that gets people to give it a look is a big plus, so kudos to you for that! :D After all, it was the game that debuted a lot of features that would become commonplace later, and it's also the main ancestor of the modern-day colour devices.

Incidentally, there is another solution, if your Japanese knowledge is good enough for it: At least one of the game's two Japan-only sequels did run in real-time, thanks to having a battery-backed real-time clock that's installed in the cartridge. Because of this, it would keep going even when the cartridge was out of the Game Boy - and if memory serves, one of the sequels' cartridges also has an LED that will flash to alert the user to in-game calls, as well, again even when it's out of the Game Boy. The sequels have even less recognition in the virtual pets community, so I'd love to know if anyone looks into this more. I've tried, but my Japanese is almost non-existent, and I don't like the idea of trying to navigate hidden meters and obscure almost-hidden mechanics in a language that I barely know - that's already tricky enough with the first game's iffy English translation! :lol:

I own one of the sequels, Tamagotchi 2, which features the umino and morino characters. The menus/functions for it are almost exactly the same as the Tamagotchi GB game, so I think the experience would be similar to playing on a meets after having played with the ON. I opened it up, and there's no RTC crystal in the cart (explains why the original battery still holds a save), but the RTC function does exist in Tamagotchi 3: Osucchi to Mesucchi.

https://tamagotchi.fandom.com/wiki/Game_de_Hakken!!_Tamagotchi_Osucchi_to_Mesucchi

Anyway, good suggestions, might you be interested in making some sort of rom hack?

Edited by Eggiweg
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6 hours ago, Penguin-keeper said:

I think that the Game Boy game is a Tamagotchi release that deserves more notice and coverage within the community.

I always loved the graphics and the expressions. The pets always felt more real to me because they had so many more sprites. The gameplay is also an improvement over the original toys,without losing the essence of Tamagotchi... apart from the faster clock!

 

6 hours ago, Penguin-keeper said:

At least one of the game's two Japan-only sequels did run in real-time, !

I omitted to mention, because it wasn't absolutely necessary to the post, but I'm also doing this on the sequel (tamagotchi 2),... but wait, I didn't know there was ANOTHER one! Now I definitely have to check that out! 

 

5 hours ago, Eggiweg said:

Anyway, good suggestions, might you be interested in making some sort of rom hack?

It definitely interests me, but I'm afraid I won't be able to find the time to do it. Are there tools that make Tamagotchi rom hacking easy (kinda like CoilSnake for Earthbound)?

Edited by Penguin-keeper
Merged multi-posting.
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5 hours ago, Eggiweg said:

I own one of the sequels, Tamagotchi 2, which features the umino and morino characters. The menus/functions for it are almost exactly the same as the Tamagotchi GB game, so I think the experience would be similar to playing on a meets after having played with the ON.

Ah! Thankyou! That's good to know. :D The second game is an incredibly cheap pick-up, for whatever reason, so I might well have to look out for it now.

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Quick update!

So I've been playing the game(s) this way for almost 48h now and so far I can say that the Tamagotchis I'm raising feel more "real" to me because they don't only exist for a short, abridged play session. Since I'm forcing the in-game time to advance at the same pace as in real life, I'm thinking about my tamagotchis for a longer period of time, thinking about how they'll evolve, how long they'll live etc. The in-game limitations also feel more real to me, for instance when the game says I have to wait tomorrow for a new tournament, I actually think about my own tomorrow and don't just interpret that as meaning "just wait a while".

I've also added a new rule for myself:

3/ If you're playing the game at e.g. 9:58, and the in-game clock shows 9:00, and the (real-life) 10:00 mark comes to pass, you have to wait for 10:00 in the game also, doing nothing.

Basically all these rules could be summarized as:

"You can only take care of your tamagotchi when the in-game clock shows the same hour as the real life clock."

So if the in-game clock is too late, you must let it catch-up doing nothing. And if the in-game clock is in advance, you must shut off the game and wait.

I haven't hatched a new egg when I started playing this way, but maybe when my current Hashizotchi dies, I'll hatch a new egg and start a log!

Edited by LucidLyes
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47 minutes ago, LucidLyes said:

I haven't hatched a new egg when I started playing this way, but maybe when my current Hashizotchi dies, I'll hatch a new egg and start a log!

I would absolutely love to read this! :D Tamagotchi GB represent! \m/

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