Hatchi by Portable Pixels Review: Raising Virtual Pets Never Goes Out of Style

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Photo Credit: Hatchi App

When the Tamagotchi first came out, I begged my grandmother to get me one. Unfortunately, she wasn’t really a fan of technology (except for our TV and VHS). She only found value in books and not some digital toy. I knew that my begging would be unfruitful, so I stopped.

But now that tablets and mobile technology are commonplace, my interest for raising a Tamagotchi was rekindled. Thanks to Hatchi by Portable Pixels I can now have a Tamagotchi-like experience even in my late 20’s. teehee

What is Hatchi?

 

“Hatchi is a retro-looking iPhone app sure to get the nostalgia burning for all those who cared for a virtual pet back in the 1990s when they were at the height of their popularity. Just as with the keychain-sized pets of the 90s, iPhone, iPod and iPad users now will feed, clean, play with and generally look after their pets to ensure they grow up to be healthy, happy little Hatchis. He needs YOU!”

 

Here’s a quick video of Hatchi’s gameplay:

It is available for 99 cents from the Apple App store, while Google Play Store offers a paid (Php92.41) and free version. It was on sale for a short period of time, so I got it for free on my boyfriend’s iPad. 🙂

Although it’s not the original Tamagotchi that I’ve wanted so badly when I was a kid, it’s the next best thing.

I’ve actually tried downloading a few similar apps in the past, but they were weird and didn’t really get me hooked. I’ve been playing Hatchi for over a week now, and I’m still hooked. (A week is definitely a long time considering there are many apps vying for your attention.)

 Gameplay

There are plenty of activities that can keep you busy when playing Hatchi. Mostly, you’ll spend your time caring for your pet, but other times you’ll be putting your memory and tic-tac-toe skills to good use.

Your interaction with your pet Hatchi involves feeding, cleaning his poop, letting him get enough sleep, keeping him smart with books, and keeping him active by playing the different mini games.

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The gameplay becomes more diverse with its mini games. This is where you’ll get the chance to earn coins to spend for the welfare of your pet. For example, you can buy foods that will allow your Hatchi to have longer energy. Longer energy means you can have more play time with your pet and earn more coins.

The games might look simple at first, but they can be engaging and even addicting. It will remind you of the games you used to play on 2G phones like Nokia’s 3110 memory game (I can’t remember its specific title).

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Photo credit: http://cheezburger.com/5644634624

My personal favorites are It’s Raining Meds and the Hatchi Matchi. I believe that It’s Raining Meds is the fastest and easiest way to get more coins. Your pet simply needs to avoid the pouring injection rain by tapping the left and right cursor. Hatchi Matchi is also pretty straightforward. Your goal is to find the pair of foods and avoid the skulls.

Multiplayer Mode

There’s also an online option where you can compete with other Hatchi parents. It’s actually a lot more fun than I expected. It’s a super short game that simply involves tapping and timing.

When I first played it, I found it weird, as there were no instructions on how to play the game. But during the second run, it felt pretty natural and it starts getting fun.

Coins, Coins, Coins

Earning coins can take a long time most especially if you want to inject more color and options to your gaming experience. Foods and colours upgrade have pretty reasonable prices. For example, I just upgraded my Hatchi to a random color for 200 coins. Now, he is blue!

It gets pretty challenging when you want to buy buffs. I’m currently saving for Coin Doubler, but I have a long way to go! It costs 6000 coins, and I only have 1500 coins after blowing my 200 coins on a random color.

If you’re really itching for some coins, the good news is there is another way! You can earn coins by doing social media stuff such as liking Portable Pixels’s Facebook page and Tweeting about your Hatchi.

If you simply want to raise pets and keep them happy, then earning coins might not be a deal breaker. And if you’ve got extra cash to spend, you can always buy coins.

Value

For .99 cents, this app is surely a must-have for those who like raising virtual pets or for those who simply want to relive the experience of what it was like in the 90’s.

Although it the game looks super simple, there are actually a lot of things that can keep you busy. Plus, there is nothing like seeing your own Hatchi fully grown and releasing him/her into the wild.

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Meet Hewie. My first adult Hatchi. 🙂 He has already been released into the wild.

All in all, purchasing or downloading this app should be a no-brainer. But if you’re still on the fence, here is a quick rundown of its pros and cons:

Pros

·      Reexperience/experience games like Tamagotchi

·      Elicits 90’s nostalgia

·      Simple yet engaging gameplay

·      Perfect for those who like nurturing pets in virtual environment

 Cons

·      Too long to earn considerable amount of coins

·      Have to shed money if you want to get more features (for Android free version)

·      Can be a bit dull after raising 2-3 Hatchis

Playing Hatchi by Portable Pixels not only provided me with good fun, it also allowed me to reminisce a lot of things about the 90’s. It’s good to be reminded of  how much black and white pixels on a screen can do.

It also made me realize–no matter how much digital technology has evolved–raising virtual pets will never go out of style. In the future, when we have holograms and lasers integrated in our mobile gadgets, I’m sure we’d still be raising some kind of virtual pet. 🙂

 

 

Irene Chan

Irene Chan

Irene Chan loves two things: communication and technology. With this tech blog and her role as Head of Communications at Veems, she believes she has the best job in the world. 🙂 Besides those two things, she's also crazy for coffee, dogs, and zombies.Follow her on Veems to get tips and fun updates from her geeky life.
Irene Chan


  • i have one 🙂
    his name is drew.
    and i agree with you, i should have a long time to collect coin but it’s happy when you play whit him 🙂

    • Irene Enriquez

      Hi, Azis. How is Drew? Did you release him already? It took me about a week to fully grow Hewie. But it’s been a long time since I’ve played. Neway, thanks for dropping by.:)