The Nintendo Game Boy was first released on this day 30 years ago in Japan, then North America three months later, and lastly in Europe, nearly a year after.
The Game Boy launched 30 years ago today in Japan in 1989 and since then, this little pocket-rocket went on to sell well over 100 million units, allowing gamers all over the world the freedom to play their favorite games – including Tetris, Super Mario, and Pokémon. Having this new-found freedom meant that Game Boy owners could play whenever and wherever they wanted which completely revolutionized the video-game era.
The Game Boy combined features from both the NES home system and Game & Watch hardware and went on to create several models that include The Game Boy Pocket, Game Boy Light, Game Boy Color, Game Boy Advance, Game Boy Advance SP, and Game Boy Micro. The Game Boy started it all with playing on the go and planted a firm path that made way for the likes of the DS, 3DS, and the Switch that we are lucky to own today.
It is probably one of the most recognizable devices from the 1980s which, of course, has made it a cultural icon. Even today there are plenty of gamers who play on the Game Boy, even casting more current handhelds to the side in favor of it. Unfortunately, like most good things, the Game Boy’s life came to an end as it stopped producing in 2001 after the Game Boy Advance made an appearance – which probably means it’s now due for a revival?
In my personal opinion from having owned an original Game Boy, here are my top 10 games:
- The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening
- Donkey Kong
- Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins
- Kirby’s Dream Land
- Castlevania II: Belmont’s Revenge
- Harvest Moon GB
- Gargoyle’s Quest
- Mega Man V
- Double Dragon
Recently, Chris Evans and Scarlett Johansson were shown playing a pair of Game Boys together–link cable included–and appear to be playing the original Tetris together. We also have seen an artist take a very different approach to the Game Boy by starting her own business called ‘Gameboy Planter’ where she lovingly fills old Game Boys with plants and adorable Pokemons.
Happy Anniversary, Nintendo Game Boy and thank you for the memories.