You have to hand it to Nintendo: the company knows how to change the way people play video games. As millions of gamers getting to grips with the Switch, which delivers A+ games on-the-go as well as it does docked at home, many will remember the console that pioneered the concept of portable gaming: the GameBoy.
Launched in Japan in 1989, the GameBoy sold over 300,000 in its first two weeks and over 100 million in total. The 8-bit handheld console supported small interchangeable cartridges and its monochromatic display could screen render games in four different colors of gray, but thanks to titles like the side-scrolling Super Mario Land, Kirby’s Dream Land and Tetris, consumers just couldn’t get enough of it.
With so many units sold, there’s a plethora of handsets still available to quench your retro gaming needs, as Julia Hardy discovered in Croydon. But what if we could open up new worlds on the portable brick? We’ll hand it over to Simon Ellis from Retrogamebase to see what else we can get it to do.
Tech Hunters is a 10-part video series that uncovers the devices we were once obsessed with, looking at how they disrupted the tech industry, and what they’re worth today. From the pocket pet obsession with the original Tamagotchi, to mix-tapes and Sony Walkman, Tech Hunters explores the audio, visual, interactive and transport innovations that have shaped today’s culture.