Jurassic Park Lost World Dino/Jura Pet
The ‘Jurrassic Park: The Lost World “JURA PET”’ is a virtual pet by Tsukuda Original. It seems to be the only vpet they ever made. It came out in 1997 and was Japanese only.
I got one of these this Christmas because the screenshots and photos reminded me of a vpet I had when I was a kid…
floaty wavy reminiscence zone
I remember going on holiday in the camper van with my parents to a campsite where there were other kids to play with, and I had a vpet that was a dinosaur. Pokémon was just getting huge at the time… I think Yellow was recently out and kids had Game Boy Colors. I didn’t have a Game Boy or any official merch in particular, but I loved the TV show. The dinosaur on my pet looked like Charmander to me, and one day it changed into a Pteranodon kind of thing. I told my friends at the campsite that my Charmander evolved in Aerodactyl and they raised their eyebrows at me, but probably had pity on me in my gameless state…
floaty wavy transition back to present day
I wanted to find out if the JURA PET has the same ROM that I remember from that vpet I had in the 90s.
Most of the wakeup/setup is the same as any Bandai tamagotchi.
Use A to cycle through the icons, B to select, C to cancel.
While on the clock screen (press B) you can mute by holding C and pressing A.
The icons are:
- Game 1 (Left/Right)
- Game 2 (High/Low card)
- Weather countermeasures (!!)
- (Attention icon)
For the uninitiated, most vpets have Info/Stats as the first icon. Which means that to check if your pet needs food or play, you simply press A, then B.
In their wisdom, the designers made Info the eighth(!!!) icon!!! To add insult to injury, the buttons are really not very good or responsive. So you probably have to press A about 10 times to find out if your dino needs a burger.
The foods do not follow the usual rules:
- Burger adds one to belly, adds one kilo.
- Ice cream does not affect belly, happiness, or weight.
- Water does not affect belloy, happiness, or weight, however the instructions in Japanese stipulate that you should give your dino water at least 5 times a day
It feels to me that the dino has more appetite than Tamagotchi/Digimon. In general, it is a higher maintenance pet.
When weather happens, the attention light will come on. Presumably you need to respond in a timely way or it counts as a Care Mistake (CM).
- Scarf (I think; it didn’t come up) - for cold weather
- Baseball hat - for strong sunshine
- Umbrella - for rain
Game 1 has an element of timing and skill. This is frustrating because not only are the buttons poor, but the response time has several frames of lag. You need to press a button before you want it to register. And hope that you actually pressed it.
Game 2 is pure luck as far as I can tell. Despite being a game of cards, the dino loses a kilo each time it plays.
Jura pet child stage crab thing in need of medicine:
(The keen eyed will notice that I took the sticker off and cleaned up the plastic. It was falling off… it’s 26 years old after all)
While some of the graphics are charming, this is a frustrating vpet ROM baked into frustrating hardware.
The growth of the pet seems to be:
- Day 1 - Baby (looks like two blobs)
- Day 2 - Child (looks like a crab… there might be two characters at this stage)
- Day 3 - Teen
- Day 4 - Adult (I got T-Rex I think)
On Day 4, I went to feed my dino, and the screen went black and the buttons stopped responding. It had crashed! Oh dear.
This is a fast growth curve compared to Bandai toys. The baby stage lasts longer but isn’t as intense as a tamagotchi. I was really surprised when it went to Adult on Day 4.
Jura pet teen dinosaur looks a bit like a charmander?
The teen and adult stages go to bed at a ridiculous time, like after 10pm. I couldn’t believe it. Totally unusable for a little kid without adult help. The bedtime of the adult was also not reliable. One day 10:25ish, another day 10:40. I had to check the clock screen to see if the time was slipping (it wasn’t).
One time I even tried turning the light off to make it go to sleep. It didn’t really work. But when the pet did fall asleep, the attention call came on, even though the light was off. I had to go to Light and select Off, again.
Conclusion - was it the dino from my childhood?
I’m not sure.
I feel like the teen “Charmander” character is a good fit for what I remember when I was 6. I can’t believe I would have been able to take care of this pet. It’s conceivable that with more care mistakes, it would grow into a pteranodon. I don’t remember the foodstuffs, or the weather feature. I had thought it ate rice.
I did enjoy playing this pet for 4 or 5 days, but I’m not starting it up again any time soon; I would rather run a Digimon or Angelgotch. The buttons are better… and they don’t crash!
Move slow and fix things 🐌✨