Wednesday, July 15, 2009

10 Game Boy Games You Probably Haven't Played (But Should)

All right so we looked at good games you probably haven't played on Nintendo's 8 bit and 16 bit consoles, but what about their inaugural handheld console? Worry not, for here are 10 Game Boy games that are worth a look.

1. Boomer's Adventure in Asmik World

There's probably a reason that you never hear from developer Asmik anymore, but this game isn't one of them. This was one of the very first Game Boy titles I had. It's something to do with a flood causing monster living on top of a tower and Boomer the dinosaur's trek up there to beat the guy's dumb ass. The game even goes s far as to make you trek all the way back down the tower, though the bosses come back much harder. I never beat this one because the last boss is ridiculous hard, but the game is quite good. It's basically a "find the key, get to the next level" game, but with enough interesting twists and innovations. There was eventually a sequel as well, though I never played it. Not the best game you'll play, but worth a shot.

2. CastleVania II: Belmont's Revenge

If you did indeed pass on this, it's probably because the first CastleVania game for Game Boy was such a dreadful experience. While I wouldn't go so far as to call it a bad game, it certainly wasn't up to snuff for CastleVania with ridiculously slow movement, very hard jumps and primordial graphics. The sequel is better in every single way however, and even has an interesting Megaman style level select at the beginning. It also, of course, had great music.

3. The Pagemaster

Sorry, couldn't find a screenshot. While we know that licensed games suck turd, imagine this, a handheld licensed game based on a flop of a movie where an animated McCauly Culkin reads books or some shit. Lame, right? Well the game is somehow really good, with shockingly good graphics and animation for the Game Boy, Super Game Boy support, great controls and it's challenging as well. Hunt it down.

4. Wario Land II

This one came out really late in the Game Boy's lifespan, the Game Boy Color was already around, and there would eventually even be a GBC version of this game. Wario Land II has the very original and intriguing concept that your main character cannot be killed. Enemies can knock coins away from you and bat you away forcing you to climb a bunch of platforms again, but you can't die in the game. The enemy attacks can also cause you to transform, which is most of the time necessary. More of a puzzler than a true action platformer, Wario Land II is addictive, has multiple endings and hundreds of secrets to find.

5. Batman

There's a load of Batman games on the Game Boy and some of them are pretty damn good, while others are a load of shit. The original Batman, which is somewhat loosely based on the Tim Burton movie, looks and plays rather primitive, but it's a hell of a lot of fun, and has great music. The game sucks you in somehow, as you guide your tiny little batman through the levels. It's hard to explain why the game is worth your time, so I'd just recommend playing it.

6. Kid Dracula

This is actually a sequel to a NES game of the same name that never made it here. Although they're basically the same game, the Game Boy one is better. It's a CastleVania spinoff that plays quite a lot more like Megaman, and you actually play as a little munchkin version of Dracula.

7. Quarth

Quarth is a sort of weird reverse-tetris where you shoot the blocks upwards. It's like a ridiculous shoot'em'up/puzzle love baby. You shoot little blocks at the formations to make them into rectangles so they disappear. I've never seen another game like it. It's quite fun, and worth a look.

8. Ultima: Runes of Virtue

This is a very old-school style Ultima that has a focus on simple fetch quests, dungeon diving and fast paced action. Sort of like Ultima I meets Zelda as a dungeon crawler. There was a sequel that never made it here, for both Game Boy and Suepr NES, but I prefer the original by far. The game is also bizarre, full of strange references and humor.

9. Wario Blast! Featuring Bomberman

Wario Blast! is a weird sort of crossover which is basically Wario in a Bomberman game, with Bomberman being his rival. You can play as either but there's really no difference. Most people ignored it because either they were upset it wasn't a real Wario game or they were Bomberman fans who didn't realize it was a Bomberman game. It's just like any other Bomberman game, which means it's awesome.

10. Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters

Why oh why is this game almost universally ignored? So many people have lamented the lack of a sequel to Kid Icarus, when here it was on the Game Boy all these years. And what's amusing to me is this game is, if anything, quite a bit better than the venerable NES classic. So shut up about putting Kid Icarus on your list of awesome games that never get a sequel and play this. Or don't, but either way, shut up.

1 comment:

  1. I read about Kid Icarus Of Myths and monsters in a nintendo magazine and they said the same thing. The game is great and I think it was a sequel or something like that (memory is very foggy)