Over five years have come and gone since my last post on the Nintendo Gameboy. Whenever I do one of these “updates” posts, I’m reminded of just how long I’ve been writing this retro gaming blog. To prove how little time and money I spent collecting for this handheld, I purchased a measly one game, Operation C, in those five years and bought it just this month.
I already have many useless yet fascinating peripherals for the Gameboy, such as the camera, the printer, the Nuby light, various carrying cases, and alternate styles (e.g., Gameboy Pocket, Gameboy Color). Therefore, I focused on getting manuals for my loose games whenever I could. I picked up manuals for ten titles, which means I now own the manual for every Gameboy game in my collection. I’m consistently intent on owning manuals, even though I understand it’s not necessary anymore, thanks to most manuals or game instructions being transcribed on the internet. This unexplainable need seems to fit in the same category as my need to own games that I could simply emulate.
As a gaming purist (not considering this a badge of honor, but instead a curse), I typically try to play my retro games how they were initially designed to be played, using the console and controllers that were available to gamers when they were released. For the Gameboy, I sort of held fast to this rule but also bent it in a way. This month, I didn’t play games on the original gray monochrome model, the Pocket, Color, or even on the Gameboy Advance. Instead, I pulled out my SNES, the Super Gameboy adaptor, and used a SNES controller to play Gameboy games projected on my CRTV.
I had previously struggled to get very far in games because of the small screen and difficult-to-see pictures. Playing on the Super Gameboy made them somewhat more manageable for me to advance far in. I made it further in Castlevania Adventure than I’d ever made it before. I finally beat Super Mario Land & gave Super Mario Land 2 a try before realizing that the save feature wasn’t working in the game. As of this writing, I am working through Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters and am at the end of level 3 castle. I can thank the Super Gameboy for these experiences.
I don’t see myself adding a ton of Gameboy titles to my collection, but there are certain games I’d still like to own. I tend to gravitate towards titles from existing franchises I am familiar with. Therefore, games like Castlevania Legends, Contra: The Alien Wars, Final Fantasy Adventure, Final Fantasy Legend (I already have FFL2), & Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Fall of the Foot Clan appeal to me the most.
To the surprise of probably no one, Gameboy games have skyrocketed in average price over the past few years. I have a couple of games that can sometimes sell for over $100 now. Both my complete in-box copy of Super Mario Land and my copy of Castlevania 2: Belmont’s Revenge with manual can consistently hit the $90-110 range. Boxes for these games must be challenging to come by (I only own one Gameboy game box myself) because titles will go for 3-4x more with a box than they would loose. Another reason not to go crazy with the Gameboy collecting at this time.