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Hatchi, iOS Pet
 

Hatchi, iOS Pet

Platform: iPhone/iPod
Category: Simulation
 
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Hatchi is a virtual pet game for the iOS created by Portable Pixels. It's very much like a classic Tamagotchi. In fact, if you've ever used one, you'll know exactly how to use Hatchi. It has very simple graphics and sound by intention to feel like the older virtual pets. You take care of your Hatchi, let it evolve over time, keep it satisfied, and then release it!

Graphics

The graphics are incredibly simple. Pixelated would be an understatement, because Hatchi uses huge pixels. Obviously this is a way to use nostalgia. I like it, but I also wish it had better graphics. Some sort of combination would be nice.

Sound

There isn't a lot to say about sound. There are some minor sound effects but not a lot. Again, it's all about nostalgia. There's nothing to complain about, but there's nothing worth heavily praising.

Gameplay

Your Hatchi starts as an egg. Tap it to hatch. It has six needs - hunger, hygiene, smarts, active, energy, and happy. Those are exactly as their listed by the way. There are also six ways to interact with it. You can feed it, clean it, read to it, play with it, turn the light on or off, and give it medicine. Every need has an activity that fulfills it, and some are related. For example, when you feed your Hatchi, its hunger goes up. (High hunger means it doesn't need food - confusing.) If you feed it its favorite food, the hunger level goes up and the happiness goes up. If you play with it, "active" increases, but energy decreases.

Over time, the Hatchi will evolve into different forms. It takes five days to see the final form. After seven days, you can release your Hatchi into the sanctuary so you can get a new egg. This is an interesting feature that I like. A Hatchi won't die of old age. You can keep it around, let it die of neglect, or release it into the sanctuary. If you get tired of your Hatchi and want to get a new evolution, you don't have to let it die. You can also visit the sanctuary to see a gallery of your old Hatchis.

I used Hatchi for a few weeks. My first two Hatchis took the exact same evolutionary path. The third time, I decided to never play with it in an attempt to get a new, interesting evolution. It followed the same path except the very last form, leaving me with a final Hatchi that was different than my first two but very similar. The fourth time, I decided to neglect my Hatchi. I found its least favorite food and only fed it that. I didn't play with it. I didn't read to it. I even gave it medicine when it didn't need it. Finally, I got a different form.

Conclusion

Hatchi is definitely missing some features I'd like, but even so, I enjoyed it. There are achievements, but I'd like a sense of multiplayer. How about mating with a friend's Hatchi? That would be really cool. For what Hatchi does, it does well. It captures nostalgia and lets you have a simple little pet. For people who crave collecting, there are plenty of evolutions to see. I remain curious about future updates and hope to see more features soon. Portable Pixels is also very responsive; I wrote to them as a customer and got a resonse two days later. While it's time consuming to see many different evolutions, Hatchi is also not very demanding. I can take care of it in the evening and forget until the following afternoon. It might be hungry, smelly, bored, stupid, and everything else, but it'll be alive. For now, I know I need to keep playing: My friend got an octopus. I want an octopus.

Hatchi is available for $0.99 on the App Store.










 
 

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