Tamagotchi, the egg-shaped virtual pet beloved of schoolchildren in the 1990s, is making a comeback and is set to hit the shelves of European shops in time for Christmas. The tiny toy character, which owners have to nurture to maturity, was a worldwide smash the first time around, with maker Bandai selling 40 million units between 1996 and 1999. Now a new, updated version, called Tamagotchi Friends, is scheduled for release in Europe next month and in North America some time in 2014. A spokesman for Bandai in Tokyo said the new version is primarily aimed at children aged 7-9, and allows players to raise up to 24 different creatures.
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