Tamagotchi Hacking




So it turns out that the age-old Tamagotchi uses the architecture from the 6502! What is even more startling is the discovery about how Tamagotchi toys actually work. The programming of Tamagotchis revolve entirely around one-bit logic: all of the interaction between a Tamagotchi and the player is controlled through switches, checking to see if a player has pressed a button at the right time. Further, all of the data associated with games on the Tamagotchi toy is bound up with the frames of animation.

It’s all so simple, despite the need for more reverse engineering due to the use of mask ROM within Tamagotchis: since the toy manifests its programming in discrete transistor logic, it notoriously difficult to ‘dump’ its data. The author of the presentation hypothesises that if she can get a hold of the test program associated with the industrial mask ROM burning process, a program used by the chip company to prove that hardware errors are not their fault, she might be able to finally shed light completely on how Tamagotchis work.