Wednesday, June 30, 2010

OM21: Tamagotchi Tamatown Tama-Go Information

So Tamapalace.tk has recently gotten a hold of one of the new Tamatown Tama-Go toys courtesy of Bandai America. Sad to say, however, their coverage on the toy itself has been incredibly poor. I've decided to compose as much information and images as I can on the new toys, perhaps to give Tamagotchi fans out there a better sense of what the Tama-Go is and what it does before it hits the shelves this summer.

First off, the Tamatown website has been updated with the new "Swirly Sweet City" and, like the Music Star before it, there's a section in your apartment that lists all of the Tama-Go characters you've logged in as previously. The images are all in silhouette, but the owner of Tama-Yama-Wuv (along with several others) traced the shadow images back to other Tamagotchi artwork, eventually uncovering all of the characters.

From what it looks like, the Tama-Go cast will be a mix of the Tamagotchi Plus Color and Tamagotchi iD, along with some Bandai improvisation as per usual. It also seems to turn Ringotchi, ChaMametchi, Nonopotchi, and Kikitchi into adult characters, which is actually somewhat unnerving. The iD at least excluded the Senior and Special stages and called it the "Friend" stage, instead of adult, to avoid this kind of confusion..

And if you're wondering on the size of the new toy, look no further than this particular image posted by TamaPalace:

It's HUGE.

Yup, it's the same dimensions as the Tamagotchi iD! Supposedly this is because of the new figurines that get attached to the top of the device, but other than that, the HUGENESS of the toy seems rather unnecessary. The iD at least had an updated color screen, leading me to my next topic. Images once again courtesy of TamaPalace.

(Admittedly, the "Welcome!" would have looked better if it didn't have the shade of gray and instead just had white...)

Instead of just the typical black-and-white screen, we now have what Bandai America describes as a "four-gray scale display". In other words, shades of gray have been added to give a better illusion of the Tamagotchi world inside your toy. Thanks to this, you can now see the actual background of your Tamagotchi's home, hinting that like in the Plus Color, you will be able to refurnish your home (maybe rooms too?). Again like the Plus Color, you can name yourself and when your Tamagotchi calls for attention, it will say your name in a speech bubble. Up to 8 letters can be used! A big improvement over the 5 letters on previous versions.

Also, what in the world is that fifth icon supposed to be? I think it's meant for the figurines, but doesn't look anything like them to me. Unless it's supposed to be an icon of a sitting Mametchi on a little black platform? Is that what it is?

The other icons are: Health Meter, Food, Bathroom, Door (hopefully will be identical to the Plus Color and iD), Training, Medicine, Connecting, Friendlist, and Attention. Noticeably absent is the Item Trunk icon. Maybe it's been merged with the 5th icon? I'm not sure. We'll have to wait and see for somebody to either show us or scan an instruction manual.

Much like the toy itself, the box of the Tamatown Tama-Go is massive. My biggest problem with it, other with the amount of huge unused space? It goes on to describe the accessories and web site much more than it describe the actual toy and what it does. The last thing the target audience needs to think is that the toy is completely useless without the aid of a figurine and Internet connection.

Also, the box reveals the Tama-Go takes 2 AAA batteries, which are not included. Never, EVER have I seen a Tamagotchi that couldn't be played with right out of the box. Even the iD and Plus Color came with the necessary batteries. Why now exclude them?

So, is the Tama-Go worth the new $20 price tag? Are the $7 figurines worth it? There's still not enough information to tell for either. I'd like Bandai America to convince me how wonderful this new toy is and how the figurines make it even better, but all of the advertising seems to be geared toward the new face decals of the toy and the Tamatown website. And TamaPalace, who happens to own the toy, aren't answering key questions and updates on the Tama-Go are few and far between. I'm sitting on the "wait-and-see" fence; once it's released and more personal information can be shared, I'll decide if I'd like to get my hands on it.

- OM21


Jenny said...

I think the reason that TamaPalace can't talk about it is because of an embargo.

When companies release new toys, games, previews to reviewers before release for review, there are embargo contracts on what the reviewer is allowed to release to the public before release. This allows the company to keep information from leaking out before the actual product ships. So if there's some sweet surprise, or something wrong with the product, you won't know until shipping date. Otherwise it could effect their sales.

Still, I like what I'm seeing so far. If only it were in color!!

Jesmond said...

I'm looking forward to getting my hands on one of these. It does look like it's going to be interesting. The only thing I don't like is the fact that it's so big. I like my tamagotchis to be as small as possible.

Anonymous said...

I've always had a problem with the "grayscale" tamagotchi's. I liked them just black and white. I have trouble setting the screen in grayscale. Its either too dark to make out what's going on, or too light to see the background. I wish there was a brightness/contrast option.

!Gotchi-Gotchi! said...

I don't understand why everyone seems to dislike this new Tama. It's obviously not as good as the +Colour or iD, but considering some previous decisions made by Bandai America, it's pretty good. And the fact they're sending them out to some people to test them, and give them feedback, they must be trying their hardest to incorporate our suggestions into it.
@anonymous: There is a contrast option. According to binary of TamaTalk/Tama-Zone, you can adjust the contrast the same way as the V5, V6 and +Colour/iD.
@OM21: There are no actual items (other than renovations and food) to buy, according to binary. However, some figurines (not the ones that are included with the Tama-Go) include an item or two that can be used on your Tama.

TamaFan01 said...

I saw the picture of the Tama-Go, and Oh My God that thing is GINORMOUS! If they were alive, versions 1-6 would cower in terror begging for dear life and then the Tama-Go saying he's gonna eat them away. -m- But really? Music Star Tamagotchi came with batteries and now it is UNINCLUDED?! WHAT THE HECK BANDAI?! >:(

Tama Meadows said...

Thanks for the info! :) I'm actually really excited for this tamagotchi..
I'm just wondering if anyone knows when it's going to be released for canada.
PS: I also have a tamago post on my blog!

beakeyo and emily rule said...

Well i was just wondering do you know the prices for the pets at the pet shop on Tamagotchi music city? I got a present off someone its a hampster and i was wondering how much it costs! Also i just wanted to say if you ever see a person called AH3880 its me. please vote for me. =) i Know my c.d might not be very good but thats only because i have a c.d but its really precious and i want the special character so i don't want to sell it. The next one with a Rating thing on it is pretty much my worst one. Lol

Anonymous said...

Ugh now i'm regreting ordering a Tama-Go. It's already to late to cancel the shipping. But I guess it's not that bad in my opinion cause I got it in a bundle. 6 figurines and 4 Tama-go's for $24.65. I can probably give the others as gifts if it's really thatt bad.