The Tamagotchi Life Cycle the process in which the Tamagotchi is born, grows, and eventually departs or dies.
Every Tamagotchi virtual pet begins with a Egg that hatches into a Baby shortly after the clock is set. From there, the Tamagotchi will begin its life cycle. The primary stages are Baby, Child, Teenager, and Adult. The process and stages may vary depending on the release, and the amount of Care the user provides can influence the Tamagotchi's growth in a positive or negative way. The process of a Tamagotchi going from one stage of the Life Cycle to the next is called Evolution.
The Egg Stage is the first stage of the Tamagotchi life cycle. Every Tamagotchi virtual pet starts with this stage, and the user must set the clock before it can hatch. The amount of time it takes for the egg to hatch varies between releases.
The TamaOtch, Tamagotchi Friends, and Tamagotchi Friends: Dream Town Digital Friend include a feature that allowed the user to choose one of three possible eggs to hatch. What impact the egg choice has had on these releases is unknown.
The baby stage is the second stage of the Tamagotchi life cycle. After the egg hatches, a baby will be born from it. The baby starts off with both the Hungry and Happy meters depleted, therefore requiring immediate care. On versions that include the name feature, the baby must be named before the user can begin caring for it.
The baby's Hungry and Happy meters deplete faster than any other character or stage, poops at a faster rate, and will take a nap instead of sleeping through the night. On most of the early pets released after the 2004 reboot such as the Keitai Kaitsuu Tamagotchi Plus, the IR Communication function cannot be used during this stage. From the Tamagotchi m!x onward, the baby will not be able to travel outside the house.
On almost every release, the baby stage will last approximately one hour, and then evolve into the child stage. However, on certain vintage releases such as the Mori de Hakken!! Tamagotch, the Tamagotchi will remain in this stage for approximately 24 hours if the white egg is chosen. Incidentally, on the Mesutchi and Osutchi, in the first generation the baby stage will last one hour. However, from the second generation onward it will last 24 hours, but will not be as needy as the first generation. On the Tamagotchi Nano and its variants, the baby stage will last 24 hours, and then evolve into an adult, skipping the child and teen stages. The Tamagotchi Mini skips the baby stage entirely, though, and also skips teenager, as it becomes a child the second the Tamagotchi Mini hatches, and after 24 hours transforms into the adult form.
On the Tamagotchi Connection and Tamagotchi Plus releases, marrying Ojitchi and Otokitchi will produce a male baby that will evolve into Oyajitchi after one hour. On the Tamagotchi Plus Color and TamaTown Tama-Go, they may instead produce a female baby that grows into Grippatchi. On the Hexagontchi, the babies will grow into Tensaitchi Jr..
For a My Tama, this stage will look identical to the standard baby stage character of the Tamagotchi being run, but with a different body color. On the Tamagotchi m!x and Tamagotchi On, food and item options are limited, and traveling to My Town or elsewhere is unavailable.
Generally, it is impossible for a Tamagotchi to die at this stage. If it is neglected to the point of death, it may do so after reaching the child stage. However, on the Tamagotchi Angel, it is possible to kill it if the lights are turned out repeatedly while it isn't napping. On the Mori de Hakken! Tamagotch, if it gets attacked by a predator at this stage, it may die.
In vintage Japanese media, this stage was referred to as the Babytchi (ベビーっち) stage.
The child stage, also known as the "toddler" stage, is the third Tamagotchi life cycle. The child stage can last from 24 to 72 hours, depending on the release. What child can be achieved is often directly associated either with what baby is born or what two Adult characters married to create it. The child stage where the user's care and resulting consequences become more apparent, especially when it evolves further into the Teenager stage.
Child characters usually evolve randomly from baby stage characters, although there have been times where a given child character has been branded "good" or "bad" care. For example on the Tamagotchi Music Star, anything other than perfect care will result in Kuchitamatchi and Tamatchi.
On the Tamagotchi Connection Version 4, Version 4.5, Tamagotchi Music Star, Chou Jinsei Enjoi Tamagotchi Plus, and Ura Jinsei Enjoy Tamagotchi Plus, this is the stage where the Tamagotchi can receive mail and start school.
For a My Tama, this stage will look identical to a standard child stage character of the Tamagotchi being run, but with a different body color and one of the parents' headgear genetics.
In vintage Japanese media, this stage was not considered an independent stage; rather, it was an extension of the baby stage. Releases from 2004 onward have codified them to be distinct from each other.
Also known simply as the "teen" stage, the Teenager stage comes directly after the child stage. The Teenager stage can last from 24 to 72 hours depending on the release, and all care done at this stage directly dictates which Adult character is achieved. Teenager characters tend to be more physically developed than child characters, usually having both arms and legs.
On the Tamagotchi Connection Version 4, Version 4.5, Chou Jinsei Enjoi Tamagotchi Plus, and Ura Jinsei Enjoy Tamagotchi Plus, teenagers will leave their childhood school and begin their education at Tamagotchi School (Ura Tama School on the Uratama). On the Tamagotchi Music Star, at this stage, the Tamagotchi joins the Gotchi Performing Arts School and forms their first band.
For a My Tama, this stage will look identical to a standard teen stage character of the Tamagotchi being run, but with a different body color, one of the headgear genetics, and one of the accessory genetics.
In vintage Japanese media, this stage was referred to as the Kodomotchi (こどもっち) stage.
The Adult stage evolves from the Teenager stage, and is the final result of all of the user's care throughout the Tamagotchi's life. Many factors such as Skill Level, Discipline, how quickly the Hungry and Happy meters are filled, family bonding, etc. all come into play with determining which adult character is earned. Adults will stay around for the remainder of the Tamagotchi's life span, and at this age, they may marry and produce babies. They can even evolve further into the Special, Parent, or Senior stage. On the Tamagotchi Connection Version 5 and related releases, adults can evolve into other adults through neglect, which can be reversed using certain foods or items.
On the Tamagotchi Connection Version 4, Version 4.5, Chou Jinsei Enjoi Tamagotchi Plus, and Ura Jinsei Enjoy Tamagotchi Plus, the Tamagotchi leaves school and, based on their skill points, can find a career. On the Tamagotchi Music Star, the Tamagotchi and the band members all evolve into Adults, and audition before a panel of judges before debuting as an official band.
For a My Tama, this stage is when all of the genetics it inherited from its parents take full effect.
In vintage Japanese media, this stage was referred to as the Adultchi (アダルトっち) stage.
The Special stage, sometimes referred to as the "secret" or "hidden" stage, is a variant of the adult stage that occurs when certain adult characters are treated a specific way, evolving into a unique character. The Special stage characters are often more difficult and complex to earn compared to the standard adult characters, sometimes requiring specific kinds of care throughout its entire life, or being influenced by generations that came before it. On the classic Tamagotchi, the Special character could live longer than any other character, with a maximum age of 25. Early growth charts would obscure these characters either by rendering them in shadow or by replacing them with a question mark symbol.
In vintage Japanese media, this stage was referred to as the Hidden Adultchi (かくれアダルトっち) stage.
See main article: Personality Stage
The Personality stage is exclusive to the Tamagotchi 4U and Tamagotchi 4U+. It involves a character taking on a new form which is determined by the player's actions. The Personality Stage forms are variations of characters rather than separate characters. The Personality Stage can be reversed, returning the character to its original form. The character doesn't age when it evolves into a Personality form.
The Parent stage results when two Tamagotchi adults marry and produce offspring. The parents will stay with the next generation, appearing in some minigames and are brought out to feed the children and administer medicine. Once the user has chosen a Tamagotchi to receive a marriage partner, it will say goodbye to its parents and any siblings it may have.
If the next generation of adults evolves into a neglect character (such as Gozarutchi), the parents will also evolve into matching neglect parents (such as Kashiratchi). Unlike the children, the parents' evolution can't be reversed. Some parent characters are exclusive to certain pure families (such as Mamavioletchi). If a Tamagotchi sent from one version to another is rendered as Nazotchi, it will not evolve into a parent character, but can still become a neglect parent during the next generation.
This stage features exclusively on the Tamagotchi Connection Version 5 and Tamagotchi Connection Version 5 Celebrity. On the Tamagotchi m!x and Tamagotchi On, parent characters appear in the family photo when marrying a pure Tamagotchi.
The Senior stage evolves from an unmarried Adult stage character, and can no longer evolve any further. Senior stage characters' lives will last indefinitely if they do not marry, and will only pass away after accumulating enough Care Mistakes. A senior Tamagotchi can only marry another senior.
On the Version 4 and Version 4.5, the character will retire, and the Gotchi King will present the Senior with a Walking Cane. Instead of going to a job during the day, the Senior will scroll through Tamagotchi Town and then stop in front of the building where they previously worked.
This stage was introduced on the Mesutchi and Osutchi, was reintroduced with the Tamagotchi Connection and (with the exceptions of the Version 5 and Version 5 Celebrity) was featured on every virtual pet until the Tamagotchi Friends (internationally) and the Tamagotchi iD (Japan), and has not been featured since.
- Main article: Death
Death is the final stage of a Tamagotchi's life cycle. It can happen from any stage (with the exception of the baby stage on most releases) either through neglect or old age. When a Tamagotchi dies, the player must press and hold A and C at the same time. A new egg will appear which will restart the cycle.
The cocoon stage debuted on the Tamagotchi Mothra, and is otherwise exclusive to releases and games where Mushitchi are raised such as the second Game Boy game, the Morino, and Tamagotchi Town. Outside of the Morino, it appears between the teenager and adult stages.
On the Mothra and Game de Hakken!! Tamagotchi 2, the player cannot interact with the character at all while it is in the cocoon - on the former this stage lasts for one hour, while on the latter it lasts for several in-game hours. By the time it has entered the cocoon, the adult it will evolve to has already been determined.
On the Morino, the coocoon stage replaces the teenager stages and so Imotchi will evolve into one of four possible Mayutchi depending on the care it was given and its weight. The cocoon stage lasts for 24 hours, and the player can select the status screen to change a temperature dial - if the temperature bar remains completely full or empty for too long, the Tamagotchi will die. If the requirements for Twinaritchi or Helmetchi have not been met, the cocoon will evolve into one of two adults depending on its temperature at the time of emergence.
In Tamagotchi Town, Mayutchi acts completely like a normal Tamagotchi - eating, pooping and being vulnerable to stress, and the adult it evolves into is determined by its stress levels and migration rather than that of the teenager it evolved from.
Mayutchi is the only Tamagotchi character to belong to this stage.
On the Evatchi, the cocoon is featured as a growth stage after the fetus. The user cannot interact with the cocoon during this stage, but can still check the clock and turn the sound on and off. After three hours, the cocoon will enter an incubation state. Pressing the A button will trigger its evolution. Its adult form is determined both by the care it received in the fetus form and how long it's incubated.
The Debirutch no Tamagotch features a completely unique growth process with four different devil "Classes", these being Elementary, Intermediate, Advanced, and Special. It is born in the Elementary stage, evolves to the Intermediate stage after four days, and the Advanced after five. If special conditions are met, it will reach the Special stage after six days. The stages are roughly equivalent to the child, teen, adult, and special stages respectively.
The TamaOtch features five growth stages that function similarly to the standard growth stages. These are Audition (baby), Debut (child), Active (teenager), Maturity (adult), and Mature (special). Certain characters can appear in multiple stages; for example, Kakuretchi can be in either the Active or Maturity stage depending on what character it was previously and how it was cared for. A character cannot evolve into itself in its next stage.