Utility. Unique. United. Universal.
- – Tamagotchi 4U slogan
The Tamagotchi 4U (たまごっちフォーユー Tamagotchi Fōyū), is a release of the Tamagotchi color series, released exclusively in Japan on September 27, 2014. Like the previous color releases, it was based on the then airing Tamagotchi! anime series GO-GO Tamagotchi!, featuring two new characters and taking place in DoriTama Town.
The 4U features NFC, which was introduced with the Tamagotchi Friends, and features a new connection method known as "touching," which replaces infrared communication from previous versions. The back of the 4U could be positioned against "touch spots" located across Japan to access special downloads, such as new room designs, characters, and more. An app was released for NFC capable phones which provided additional downloads. The 4U is also notable for having many accessories to customize the device itself, such as faceplates, charm straps, and soft cases.
The Tamagotchi 4U received an upgrade called the Tamagotchi 4U+ which was released in Japan on July 18, 2015.
The Tamagotchi 4U is similar in size to the Tamagotchi P's, having the same screen resolution and hard plastic buttons. The back of the device is flat and white, like the Tamagotchi Plus Color, to allow easier NFC touch communication. The base faceplate is white with a dotted edge and has "Tamagotchi 4U" below the screen. There is a tab on the bottom of the faceplate which allows it to be removed. When removed, there is clear plastic underneath which shows the white face of the device. Around the faceplate there is a gold trim.
The Tamagotchi 4U takes out the teen stage, and instead features a new sub-growth stage called the Personality Stage. When a character undergoes this stage, they will still be the same Tamagotchi, but take on a different appearance or even a different personality. The player's actions on their adult-stage Tamagotchi affect how the Tamagotchi will change. All built in Adult stage characters have one or two Personality Stage forms, and how to obtain them depends on the character. The Tamagotchi can be reverted back to their normal form if the conditions for the personality stage are no longer being met.
Tamagotchis can now learn certain skills if the user trains them or sends them to school. There are two types of skills:
- Basic: These skills can only be obtained in the child stage. They require the user to answer to a Tamagotchi's call while they are doing something and praise them once they successfully do it.
- Potty Training: The Tamagotchi will call at any time and ask to go to the toilet. They must be sent to the toilet and then praised. The skill is learned after 2-6 times depending on the child character. After learning it, the Tamagotchi will go to the bathroom themselves instead of pooping on the floor.
- Clean Up: The Tamagotchi will make a mess up of their blocks at 6pm and ask for help. Select the cleaning option to have them clean it. Once it is clean, the Tamagotchi must be praised. After 2 times, the Tamagotchi will clean their room themselves.
- Bathing: The Tamagotchi will ask to take a bath at 7pm. Select the bath option to make them take a bath. Once they are clean, the Tamagotchi must be praised. After 2 times, the Tamagotchi will automatically take a bath on their own.
- Special: These skills can be obtained in the adult stage by sending the Tamagotchi to a specific class in school. Some skills are requirements for certain adults to achieve their personality stage. Skills are also used when a visitor arrives in the Tamagotchi's backyard to request them to make them something. If the Tamagotchi has the right skill, they'll properly make the item and earn gotchi points. Each class will require the study set and a specific item that can be bought from the TamaDepa. When the Tamagotchi first attends a class, the teacher will them what items are needed to continue their lessons. The numbers of times a Tamagotchi must attend class to learn a skill will depend on the character.
- Invention: Study Set and Experiment Kit
- Fashion: Study Set and Make-up Box
- Sport: Study Set and Soccer Ball
- Art: Study Set and Modeling Clay
- Cooking: Study Set and Frying Pan
- Main article: TamaTomo
The Tamagotchi 4U continues the tamatomo system, this time renaming it as clover pieces. Each character (including downloadable ones) has four clover pieces to collect and collection of all four will record the character's clover in the notebook option. Three of the clover pieces are earned by eating a certain food, playing with an item, or putting an accessory on. The last piece is earned by raising an adult character for 48 hours. Obtaining all 10 base character's clovers will let the Tamagotchi receive a food or item from a character in the park.
There are three base games with additional ones being available from the app or touch spots.
- Bowling (Game Corner): The Tamagotchi is playing a bowling game and a colored meter is on the bottom of the screen. Press B when the arrow reaches the red meter to bowl a strike.
- Spaceship (Game Corner): The Tamagotchi is flying a spaceship through an asteroid field. Press A and B to avoid incoming asteroids.
- Dance★Game (Field): Mr. Micchi will be leading a dance session. Hearts marked A or B will appear on screen and the user must remember the order they appeared. After the word "Dance!" appears on screen, the corresponding buttons must be pressed in order. Dancing 10 times successfully wins the game. Playing this minigame will make the Tamagotchi lose weight.
The Tamagotchi 4U features NFC (Near Field Communication) which allows it to communicate with other 4Us, Touch Spots, and smartphones by touching the back of the device to them. There are several features tied to NFC:
Connection with Other 4Us
- Profile Exchange: Users could create their own profiles showing their name, zodiac sign, interests, skills, and romantic interests. When communicating with another device, these profiles could be exchanged and the users would have the option to see their fortune together by consulting Gypsytchi.
- Model♥Dressup: This is a connection game that users could play together where they must dress up a model. Both users must press the A button as many times as they can to collect items for the outfit. When the touch screen is shown, the devices must be touched together to see the result.
- Gifting: Users can gift each other items, foods, accessories, rooms, locations, and minigames in their inventory
- Proposal: Users can marry their Tamagotchi as long as they are both adults and the opposite gender.
Connection with 4U app and Touch Spots
The 4U can communicate with the 4U app by touching compatible smartphones or tablets with NFC capability. The 4U could also communicate with specifically marked NFC spots called "Touch Spots" which could be found throughout Japan in stores, restaurants, parks, and arcades. Touch Spots could be seen on posters, displays, arcade machines, and Bandai Data Spots. Both the app and touch spots offered:
- Exclusive Downloads: Items, food, accessories, raisable characters, games, and locations.
- Gachapon: Gachapon machines could be downloaded and played by touching any NFC device. An item, gotchi points, or nothing could be won. Only one gachapon machine can be downloaded at a time and there is no limit to how many times it can be played.
- Bingo: Similar to gachphon machines, bingo cards could be downloaded and played by touching any NFC device. Three NFC devices must be touched to complete a card and win a prize. The bingo game can only be played 4 times a day.
Communication with any NFC device
By touching any device with NFC capabilities (Ex: Smartphones, key fobs, amiibos), some unique features could be used:
- Animations: An animation will play of the Tamagotchi visiting Patchi Forest, Tamagotchi School, Future Dream Town, or outside their house.
- Slots: This is a minigame where a slot machine will run. The user can win up to 300 gotchi points, coupons, or a poster of Oyajitchi.
- House Upgrade: The more NFC touches the device has, the more nicer the house and backyard will look. Reaching 1000 touches will turn the house into a castle.
Like previous releases, adult Tamagotchis will run away if neglected for too long (younger stages will die instead). The departure sequence begins when the Tamagotchi is seen with a suitcase. This can be stopped by selecting the "talk to" option from the clover icon 3 times to convince them to stay. Othewise, if enough time has passed or the "scold" option is used, the Tamagotchi will run away and leave a goodbye letter.
The user will still have a chance to recover their Tamagotchi by selecting "Yes" after reading the letter and seeing the prompt asking if they will search for them. An animation will play of the neighborhood being searched before the Tamagotchi is found staying in a tent at the park and returning home. If "No" is selected or 24 hours has passed, another goodbye letter will appear on screen and the Tamagotchi cannot be brought back. Pressing A + C will make a new egg appear.
- Character Status: The Tamagotchi's Hungry and Happy meter, gender, age, gotchi points, skills, and Clover pieces can be viewed here.
- Profile: The user can create a profile describing themselves by inputting their birthday, age, and general interests. The profile can be shared with other 4U owners when connecting.
- Settings: The user can adjust several settings here.
- Time: Change the time
- Icon Background: Change the background behind the icons on the home screen
- Brightness: Adjust the screen's brightness
- Sound: Turn sound on or off
- Greeting: The user can exchange their profile with another user through touching the devices together. After the exchange, Gypsytchi will offer to tell a fortune based on the profiles.
- Tamagotchi 4U: This option allows two 4Us to connect to each other through touching.
- Connection Game: The users can play Model♥Dressup together.
- Gift: Users can gift each other items, foods, accessories, rooms, locations, and minigames in their inventory
- Photo: The Tamagotchis will take a photo together which will be stored in the notebook.
- Proposal: Users can marry their Tamagotchi as long as they are both adults and the opposite gender.
- 4U App: This option allows the 4U to download things from the app via compatible smartphone or tablet.
- Touch Spot: The 4U can download things from a designated touch spot.
On the Go Connection
- Bingo Game: If the user has a downloaded bingo card, they can play it here.
- Tama Gachapon: Downloaded gachapon machines can be played here.
- Refrigerator: A Rice meal and Biscuit snack is always stocked here.
- Restaurant: The Tamagotchi can visit the restaurant to buy and eat food.
- Praise: If the Tamagotchi does something correct while learning a basic skill, this option will praise them and advance their training.
- Scold: If the Tamagotchi refuses to eat and their Hunger meter isn't full or they misbehave at the table, use this option to scold them.
- Care: This option is used if the Tamagotchi is sick, has a toothache, or is sulking.
- Tama Sitter: Sitter Poketchi can be called over to babysit the Tamagotchi from 7:00 AM to 4:59 PM. She cannot be called over during the baby stage, when the Tamagotchi is sick, and when their Hunger or Happy meters are empty.
- Toilet: This option cleans up poop left by the Tamagotchi. This can also be selected when the Tamagotchi is "restless" and about to poop.
- Bathroom: The Tamagotchi will take a bath and brush their teeth.
- Cleaning: The Tamagotchi will vaccuum the room if it's dirty. This option also cleans up any messes the Tamagotchi made while playing with blocks.
- Closet: Clothes and accessories are stored here. Accessories can be worn by children and adults, with only clothing can be used on adults. Up to 20 accessories and 10 clothes can be stored.
- Tama Depa
- Game Corner: Bowling and Spaceship can be played here.
- Redecorating: Different rooms can be bought here.
- Item Shop: Toys and items needed for school can be found here.
- Tama Fashion: Clothes and accessories can be found here.
- Square: The Tamagotchi can meet other NPCs to talk to and certain events will happen depending on time and date.
- Field: Dance★Game can be played here.
- School: The Tamagotchi can enroll in a class to learn a special skill. School closes at 7 PM.
- Matchmaker: An adult Tamagotchi can visit the matchmaker to find a partner to marry to move on to the next generation. If a child-stage Tamagotchi visits here they will make wedding cakes with other Tamagotchis instead.
- Special: Special items earned from events (such as items given from the Eco-usatchi Triplets) are stored here.
- Bingo: Bingo cards can be viewed here.
- Coupon: Downloaded coupons are stored here.
- Tamatomos (Clover Pieces): Tamagotchis that have completed their clover pieces are seen here.
- Friend Note: Tamagotchis from other 4Us that have been connected with are seen here. The user also can create a message to send them the next time they connect. Up to 30 friends can be saved.
- Diary: Photos taken with other Tamagotchis are stored here.
- Characters: Downloaded characters and hints to raise them can be viewed here.
This icon is not selectable and instead acts as an attention signal when the Tamagotchi needs the user's attention.
Tamagotchi 4U App
The Tamagotchi 4U app was a companion app that allowed connections with the Tamagotchi 4U via NFC. It enabled users to access exclusive downloads, such as characters, clothes, items, and foods. The downloads would be updated every now and then and some content needed to be paid for to access it. The app was only available for download on Google Play and ran primarily on Android phones. It also required the user to create or register a Bandai Namco account and link their 4U with it.
On September 2016, the 4U app was shut down and taken off Google Play.
Accessories and Add-Ons
The Tamagotchi 4U is notable for having a bigger focus on customizing the device, with many kinds of accessories being released for it.
- Faceplates: Faceplates are plastic covers which can be attached to the front of the 4U. Each one has gaps for the screen and buttons. There were 12 faceplates available at launch with 30 designs eventually being released.
- Deco Sets: Deco Sets contained a faceplate and sticker sheet that could be used to decorate the faceplate.
- Charm Straps: Charm Straps can be attached to the device as a decoration. They came with a clip that could be attached to bags or pockets along with a decorative loop that the user could use as a strap to hang the 4U off their wrist.
- Neck Straps: Neck Straps are lanyards that the 4U could be attached to. The user could wear them and have the 4U hanging off their neck.
- Soft Cases: Decorative cases made out of soft material could cover the 4U to protect the shell from scratches. The cases come with a decorative bow or pompom attached and there is a hole on the back to allow the charm hole to be used.
There have been special sets which came with a faceplate and Touch Card exclusive to that set. The touch cards had downloadable characters, items, and rooms that could be accessed by touching the 4U to the NFC touch spot marked on the card.
- Aikatsu! Set: Aikatsu themed faceplate and touch card that contained Ichigo-chan-tchi and Akari-chan-tchi.
- 1996 Set: Two faceplates themed after the original Tamagotchi and two touch cards that contained Mametchi and Oyajitchi in vintage sprite form. The cards also included themed food and items along with a vistable location, Tamagotchi Town during the vintage era.
- 18th Anniversary Set: Two sets of decorated purple and pink Tamagotchi 4Us were made to commemorate the 18th anniversary of the Tamagotchi franchise. The content on the device was the same as other 4Us unlike previous color anniversary Tamagotchi releases. The set also came with a Christmas themed touch card containing Santa Rolatchi, items, and a minigame.
- This is the second model to feature near-field communication (NFC), the first being Tamagotchi Friends.
- This is the first model to have downloadable characters.
- This is also the first color Tamagotchi to not feature a teen stage and third overall.
- The 4U is the first Tamagotchi to allow non-adult Tamagotchis to wear accessories. This feature would return in the Tamagotchi Smart.
- The "touch spot" feature is similar to the store Deka Tamagotchis.
- There is a manga called Go-Go Best Friends that features the Tamagotchi 4U.