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Game Boy
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AKA GB
Manufacturer Nintendo
Launch date(s) Unreleased
Generation) {{{generation}}}
Codename {{{codename}}}
Discontinued {{{discontinued}}}
Media {{{media}}}
Input {{{input}}}
Backwards Compatibility No compatibility
Memory {{{memory}}}
CPU {{{CPU}}}
Service no service
Top Game {{{top game}}}
Predecessor Game & Watch
Successor Game Boy Color
The Game Boy is an 8-bit handheld video game console developed and manufactured by Nintendo. It was released in Japan on April 21, 1989, in North America in August 1989, and in Europe in 1990. It is the first handheld console in the Game Boy line. It was created by Gunpei Yokoi and Nintendo's Research and Development 1— the same staff who had designed the Game & Watch series as well as several popular games for the NES, including Metroid and Kid Icarus. The Game Boy was Nintendo's second handheld system following the Game & Watch series introduced in 1980, and it combined features from both the Nintendo Entertainment System and Game and Watch. It was also the first handheld game to use video game cartridges since Milton Bradley's Microvision handheld console. It was originally bundled with the puzzle game Tetris.

The Game Boy was a tremendous success. The Game Boy and Game Boy Color combined have sold 118.69 million units worldwide. Upon its release in the United States, it sold its entire shipment of one million units within weeks.

HardwareEdit

The Game Boy has four operation buttons labeled "A", "B", "SELECT", and "START", as well as a directional pad. There is a volume control dial on the right side of the console and a similar knob on the left side to adjust the contrast. At the top of the Game Boy, a sliding on-off switch and the slot for the Game Boy cartridges are located. Nintendo recommends users leave a cartridge in the slot to prevent dust and dirt from entering the system. The Game Boy also contains optional input and/or output connectors. On the left side of the system is an external power supply jack that allows users to use an external rechargeable battery pack or AC adapter (sold separately) instead of four AA batteries. The Game Boy requires 6 V DC of at least 150 mA. A 3.5 mm stereo headphone jack is located on the bottom side of the console which allows users to listen to the audio with headphones or speakers. On the right side is a port that allows a user to connect to another Game Boy system via a link cable, provided both users are playing the same game. The port can also be used to connect a Game Boy Printer. The link cable was originally designed for players to play head-to-head two-player games such as in Tetris. However, game developer Satoshi Tajiri would later use the link cable technology as a method of communication and networking in the popular Pokémon video game series.


ModelsEdit

Revisions Edit

Play It Loud! Edit

File:GameboyClear.jpg

On January 1, 1995, Nintendo released several Game Boy models with colored cases, advertising them in the "Play It Loud!" campaign[1] (Japanese name: Game Boy Bros. /ゲームボーイブロス/ゲームボーイブラザース). Specifications for this unit remain exactly the same as the original Game Boy, including the monochromatic screen. This new line of colored Game Boys would set a precedent for later Nintendo handhelds; the Game Boy Pocket, the Game Boy Color, Game Boy Advance (including the SP and Micro), Nintendo DS (including the Lite, DSi, DSi XL), and Nintendo 3DS (including XL,2DS) all feature different colored units. Play It Loud! units were manufactured in red, green, black, yellow, white, blue, and clear (transparent) cases. The blue edition, for reasons unknown, was never depicted in any commercials or magazine advertisements in the United States, and is much harder to find than the other six. A very rare, limited edition Manchester United Game Boy is red, with the logos of the team emblazoned on it. It was released simultaneously with the Play it Loud! handhelds in the United Kingdom. The Play It Loud's screens also have a darker border than the normal Game Boy.

Game Boy PocketEdit

File:Gameboy Pocket.jpg

In 1996, Nintendo released the Game Boy Pocket: a smaller, lighter unit that requires fewer batteries. It has space for two AAA batteries, which provides approximately 10 hours of game play. The Pocket has a smaller link port, which requires an adapter to link with the older Game Boy. The port design is used on all subsequent Game Boy models, excluding the Game Boy Micro. The screen was changed to a true black-and-white display, rather than the "pea soup" monochromatic display of the original Game Boy. Also, the Game Boy Pocket (GBP) has a larger screen than the Game Boy Color (GBC) that later superseded it. The GBP's screen has a Template:Convert diagonal, Template:Convert width, and Template:Convert height, compared to a Template:Convert diagonal for the GBC. Although, like its predecessor, the Game Boy Pocket has no backlight to allow play in a darkened area, it did notably improve visibility and pixel response-time (virtually eliminating video ghosting). The first version did not have a power LED. This was soon added due to public demand, along with new Game Boy Pocket units of different colors (released on April 28, 1997), some of them new to the Game Boy line. There were several limited-edition Game Boy Pockets including a metallic Ice Blue unit and a pink model exclusive to Japan. The Game Boy Pocket was not a new software platform and played the same software as the original Game Boy model.

Game Boy Light Edit

File:Game Boy Light.jpg

The Game Boy Light was released on April 14, 1998 for ¥6,800[2] and was only available in Japan. The Game Boy Light is only slightly bigger than the Game Boy Pocket and features an Electroluminescent backlight for low-light conditions. It uses 2 AA batteries, which gave it approximately 20 hours with the light off and 12 with it on. It was available in two standard colors; Gold and Silver, as well as numerous special editions- an Astro Boy edition with a clear case with an Astro Boy picture on it, an Osamu Tezuka World shop edition with a clear red case and a picture of his characters, a solid yellow Pokémon Center Tokyo version, a clear 'skeleton' Famitsu edition which had only 5,000 units released, and a clear yellow edition separate from the Pokémon Center Tokyo version.

It was the only handheld Nintendo produced with a lit screen until the release of the Game Boy Advance SP in 2003.


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