Hatch ($1.99) by Impending in collaboration with Realmac Software is an interactive game that will provide a fun little friend on your iPhone. Remember Neopets? How about Tamagotchi? Both have been dead for quite some time, but hopefully Hatch will allow you to relive some of those memories.
During the initial setup process, you will be introduced to Max, a cartoon character who will teach you the ropes. You will begin by adopting a Fugu, which is the species of pet available in Hatch. After an egg has been delivered, Max will notify you when the special moment of its hatching arrives.
After your pet has hatched, it is time to take care of it. You will have to show it some love in order to gain trust. This includes anything like feeding it with fruit that grows on the trees, getting rid of its waste, or just tapping it, rubbing it, or pinching its cheeks. If you acknowledge its existence at least a few times a day, your Fugu will remain loyal and stay on your iPhone.
As you make your pet happier, flowers will bloom around it in a circle. Once the circle is complete, it will be happier than ever, giving your screen a lick of affection. This will also cause the trees to bear fruit more quickly, which will allow you to nourish your pet, as well as make money on what it does not wish to eat. The money, in the form of the game's currency of acorns will allow you to purchase novelty items from the shop, like mats for your pet to sit on or luxury food items.
However, if you forget about your virtual friend for a whole day, it may leave you. My first Fugu, which I had left unattended for a whole day, got very upset and ran off into the woods. Since we had built up a lot of trust, Max was able to convince it to come back. Unfortunately, this did not happen the second time I ignored it. I was busy, okay? To prevent your Fugu from feeling completely ignored, be sure to plug your iPhone in with the app open, so it will go to sleep at night.
If your Fugu decides to end your relationship, it will at least leave you with another egg, so you will always have a pet to love.
The graphics in Hatch are very captivating. You can swipe to pan around the vivid illustrations, and tilting your phone will create a cool parallax effect. Along with this, the sounds and motion of the pet are adorable, making it impossible to resist its fictional existence.
While it may seem like a child's game, I am finding Hatch to be a lot of fun. However, I am still getting used to finding time for my pet. If you cannot make this commitment, you may be setting yourself up for disappointment. In despite of this, any average person with a few minutes to spare during their day should be able to keep up with their Fugu easily.