SOURCE: Bandai America

April 03, 2008 06:03 ET

Ultimate Tamagotchi® Family Reunion Makes More Family More Fun

Bandai America Incorporated Partners With Family Tree Magazine and FamilyReunion.com to Get Kids Excited About Their Family History

CYPRESS, CA--(Marketwire - April 3, 2008) - It's time to start thinking about planning your summer family reunion and what better way to do it than by researching your family tree so you know who to invite! Celebrating the new Familitchi V5, the newest version of the highly popular Tamagotchi Connection toy, www.TamaGenerations.com provides kids the chance to create family trees of everyone's favorite Tamagotchi characters as well as collect hidden family heirlooms. With help from partners Family Tree Magazine and FamilyReunion.com, kids can create a personalized family tree online and learn fun tips on planning their very own family reunion party. But the fun doesn't end there! Finding 20 family heirlooms will give one lucky kid the chance to win an Ultimate Tamagotchi Family Reunion for 25 family members with a special appearance from the special and fun Tamagotchi characters.

With Tamagotchi Connection Familitchi V5, kids can raise their own family of multiple characters simultaneously in one toy. Expanding the Tamagotchi experience, Familitchi features many types of families and generations to be raised. And, depending on how they care for their characters, kids can have fun experiences with the Mames (the intellectual family), Memes (artistic family), Kuchis (laid back family) and even the Violes (cheerful family). Kids are also charged with creating family togetherness and generating a strong family bond among their family of three siblings. For more excitement, kids can marry their grown-up Tamagotchi characters to their friends' characters and start a whole new generation of families by using the popular infrared technology feature. More information about the Tamagotchi V5 is available at www.Tamagotchi.com.

"We believe that the new family feature of the V5 will encourage kids to have fun with their families by sharing, inspiring each other and just plain having fun," said Colleen Sherfey, senior director of marketing, Bandai America Incorporated. "That is why we are excited about our partnerships with Family Tree Magazine and FamilyReunion.com. Together with the new Tamagotchi Connection Familitchi and TamaGenerations microsite, we will get kids excited about exploring their family history and make it a meaningful experience for the whole family."

Family Tree Magazine, the country's premier family history magazine, is partnering with Tamagotchi by providing tips for the site including teaching kids how to research a family tree as well as pointers on how to celebrate their family's heritage. FamilyReunion.com, the leading family reunion planning site in America, is currently developing fun ideas specifically tailored for kids on how to plan a successful and exciting family reunion.

TamaGenerations expands the amount of activities available in the newest addition to the Tamagotchi line, the Tamagotchi Connection Familitchi V5. The new site will give kids the opportunity to complete their own Tamagotchi family tree with their favorite characters. Exciting online activities include collecting Tamagotchi family heirlooms, customizing a Familitchi Scrapbook Album, and getting tips on raising a happy and healthy Tama-family. In addition to weekly prizes for kids who collect all 20 family heirlooms, one lucky child will win the Ultimate Tamagotchi Family Reunion, which includes a fully catered reunion for 25 of their closest family members, complete with party favors and a visit from their favorite Tamagotchi characters.

About Tamagotchi Connection

Originally launched in 1997, the egg-shaped Tamagotchi -- which simulates the life cycle of a real pet -- went on to sell more than 40 million units worldwide and created a brand new toy category within the industry. Bandai America reintroduced the brand in 2004 with a new and highly popular infrared technology "connection" feature, thereby creating stronger-than-ever consumer demand among young kids and adults alike.

The new Tamagotchi Connection includes an ever-expanding assortment of design styles, games, new characters (for a total of 53) and 144 total collectible souvenirs. Tamagotchi Connection V5 debuted in January at all major retailers nationwide with a SRP of $14.99. Debuting in July will be the refresh of Tamagotchi Connection V5, as well as the Tamagotchi Watch and redesigned Gotchi Gear™ line (SRP of $5.99 - $12.99). For more information about Tamagotchi, please visit www.Tamagotchi.com.

About Bandai America Incorporated

A leader in introducing Japanese toy trends to the United States, Bandai America Incorporated is a subsidiary of NAMCO BANDAI Holdings (USA) Inc., an entity that resulted from the integration of Namco Ltd. and Bandai Co. Ltd. of Japan. Global interests encompass six strategic business units: toys and hobby (toys, models, apparel and sundries), amusement facilities, game content (home and arcade console gaming), network (mobile phone and PC content), visual and music content (including home entertainment), and an affiliated business group. Bandai America is the manufacturer and master toy licensee of some of the most popular brands in children's toys and entertainment today, including Power Rangers, Ben 10™, Dragon Ball Z®, Digimon, BLUE DRAGON™ and Tamagotchi®. The company is headquartered in Cypress, California and information is available at www.Bandai.com.

About Family Tree Magazine

Family Tree Magazine, America's largest-circulation family history magazine, is the leading how-to publication for those who want to discover, preserve and celebrate their roots. For more information, visit http://www.familytreemagazine.com.

About FamilyReunion.com

FamilyReunion.com, the world's largest social networking site for family gatherings, is where you can search for long-lost relatives in its extensive database representing hundreds of thousands of family members. Visit http://www.FamilyReunion.com for more information.