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Nathan Wind

Game Boy & GB Advance Appreciation Thread

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Although it appears in the various Game Boy threads, rather criminally, the venerable Game Boy Advance doesn't appear to have a thread of its own. At the time of release I largely glossed over this capable little device in the face of the shiny new home consoles of the era. While I did own both an original and an SP for a short time, and indeed, had a brief daliance with the hand-cramp inducing Micro, I only really played the various Mario conversions and Advance Wars games. Having recently picked up a back lit modded original GBA I've been amazed by the quality of the graphics it can pump out, and you can call me shallow, but that has helped me enjoy and appreciate it far more than I ever did first time around. Of course, the fact that I can even see the screen clearly in the first place is a huge bonus.

I was going to do an "Essential Games" type thread but some discussion about the machine itself would also be nice because I know quite a few people here have picked up modded ones recently. I'd love to hear some recommendations for games that perhaps aren't so well known.

If it was an essential games thread and I had to pick just one game to recommend in this post, it would be Rebelstar: Tactical Command, as featured in this month's Retro Gamer. It looks great and plays a mean game of Laser Squad. I reckon it's up there with Gollop's best if you like turn based squad tactics games. My only criticism would be that it's very slow. Not in the gameplay sense, because it's obviously a rather pedestrian genre, but in the way it controls. It's ever so cumbersome to control on the GBA pad and there are a lot of menus to flick through, slowing the pace considerably. I'm nit-picking though - it really is a superb tactics game and on the GBA it's easily up there with the Advance Wars games and Fire Emblem.

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I've recently put gpsp on my psp go and am working through circle of the moon. It's amazing what a decent screen can do. I did own a ags-101 sp. Amazing bit of kit and shows up the frontlit sp to be the shocking cludge that it was.

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All of the Tony Hawk's Pro Skater games. Ignored by most when these GBA lists come up, but they're all superb. They didn't even suffer the massive quality drop-off of the big boy console versions.

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All of the Tony Hawk's Pro Skater games. Ignored by most when these GBA lists come up, but they're all superb. They didn't even suffer the massive quality drop-off of the big boy console versions.

I watched a couple of videos of it earlier - quite amazing what they managed to squeeze out of the GBA! Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance also looks really good. I'm going to have to pick that up.

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Love my Gameboy Advance. I have the original model with a AGS-101 screen fitted as well as a standard SP model. The best games I own are Drill Dozer, Metroid Fusion, Soccer Kid, Kuru Kuru Kururin (Advance) and the amazing Boktai series. I am enjoying the great British sunshine at the moment while playing through Boktai II again (you need direct sunlight to play the game). Its a relatively affordable system to buy and collect for.

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Launching without a backlight was a right pain in the arse, I recall fighting with a cheap add on light, which just sticks a bright dot on the screen.

GBA_wormlight.jpg

Afterburned was a great mod though, roped in my Dad the electrician to get it installed, worked well until the lovely GBA:SP arrived .

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I could never understand why they didn't include one as the tech was easily/cheaply available at the time. I was in college at the time and distinctly remember the conversation when we all rolled down to Game on launch day to pick it up, only to moan how shit the screen was, we were even sat outside in sunny weather which was ideal.

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I watched a couple of videos of it (Tony Hawk's Pro Skater GBA games) earlier - quite amazing what they managed to squeeze out of the GBA! Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance also looks really good. I'm going to have to pick that up.

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 was a launch title for GBA! I guess similar to Super Mario 64 DS being a launch title for DS - has there ever been a DS title with better graphics than SM64 DS..? I'm not sure there has...

I had Tony Hawk's 2, 3, & 4 on the GBA, and they're all pretty similar, but I especially enjoyed 2 (what with it being the first one of them I played, was very impressed by it at the time).

Launching without a backlight was a right pain in the arse, I recall fighting with a cheap add on light, which just sticks a bright dot on the screen.

GBA_wormlight.jpg

Afterburned was a great mod though, roped in my Dad the electrician to get it installed, worked well until the lovely GBA:SP arrived .

^ I had that light for the Gameboy Color, but got this light below (or something very similar) for the GBA, definitely much better with the two light sources:

Gameboycolorandadvancearethesolereasoni_

Love the GBA! I play GBA games on my Nintendo DS at the moment, and have played, completed Sonic Advance 2 and 3 in the last year! Definitely going to try to play Zelda: The Minish Cap, Yoshi's Island, and a Castlevania game soon...I'm tempted to play a Final Fantasy game as well though I just don't have the willpower for those games anymore (i.e. too lazy for the effort required to level up etc), definitely into the more quickfire games now. Final Fantasy 6 GBA is at a bargain price of £397.95 on Amazon.co.uk! Better be quick! (don't)

Mario Kart Super Circuit another good GBA game!

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I'm still loving mine to bits. I can't stress enough what an amazing difference the backlight mod makes and I really hope someone manages to unearth another pile of screens. It really does give the machine a new lease of life. It faces stiff competition now though, because my freshly modded Lynx has just arrived back from Grermany!

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Mario 64 had the best graphics on the DS?

What?

Doesn't it? I honestly can't think...I can't think of another DS game with as good graphics at the moment, like freeroaming 3d.
From some research just now, is SM64 DS not a contender? (for best graphics on DS)? Apparently other contenders for best graphics on DS: Metroid Prime Hunters, Zelda Phantom Hourglass, Final Fantasy III/IV, Diddy Kong Racing...perhaps we may be grateful for other opinions on this!

I'm still loving mine to bits. I can't stress enough what an amazing difference the backlight mod makes and I really hope someone manages to unearth another pile of screens. It really does give the machine a new lease of life. It faces stiff competition now though, because my freshly modded Lynx has just arrived back from Grermany!

I need to look out my Gameboy Advance, this mod talk is interesting me! Though the last time I looked at it the battery *area* was like really rusted from rusted batteries...completely forgot about the world of disposable batteries with the GBC/GBA, the DS has rechargeable battery only hasn't it! Completely taken this for granted! So much better than messing about with disposable batteries.

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Denki Blocks is secretly the best puzzler on the system. It was amazing beyond belief.

Of course, 300+ levels of Chu Chu Rocket was pretty unexpected as well.

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This is (most of) my GBA collection. SNES ports aren't on the list even though I have a few. Anything I'm still missing?

Castlevania: Circle of the Moon (22-06-01)
Mario Kart Super Circuit (14-09-01)
Wario Land 4 (16-11-01)
Napoleon (21-11-01)
ChuChu Rocket (07-12-01)
Advance Wars (11-01-02)
Golden Sun (22-02-02)
Sonic Advance (08-03-02)
Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance (11-10-02)
Metroid: Fusion (22-11-02)
Sonic Advance 2 (28-03-03)
FF Tactics Advance (24-10-03)
Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (05-09-03)
Golden Sun: The Lost Age (19-09-03)
Kirby: Nightmare in Dreamland (26-09-03)
Advance Wars 2: Black Hole Rising (03-10-03)
Pokémon Pinball: Ruby & Sapphire (14-11-03)
Metroid: Zero Mission (08-04-04)
Boktai: The Sun Is in Your Hand (14-05-04)
Sonic Advance 3 (18-06-04) 50 F
Kirby and the Amazing Mirror (02-07-04)
Mario Golf Advance Tour (17-09-04) 50 A
The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap (12-11-04)
Advance Guardian Heroes (18-02-05)
Astro Boy: Omega Factor (18-02-05)
Puyo Pop Fever (24-03-05)
WarioWare: Twisted! (19-05-05)
Boktai 2: Solar Boy Django (10-06-05)
Gunstar Future Heroes (04-11-05)
The Tower SP (21-03-06)
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Denki Blocks is secretly the best puzzler on the system. It was amazing beyond belief.

Of course, 300+ levels of Chu Chu Rocket was pretty unexpected as well.

I had/have Chu Chu Rocket as well! It is literally like a metre away from where I am now, in a clothes drawer. I enjoyed it but, as you say with the levels, I do remember being very frustrated by it...I'll have a look to see what my progress was, because I remember spending quite a lot of time on that! Unlikely I fully completed it...

I remember reading reviews to Denki Blocks at the time of its release I think, looking at screenshots just now. Will stick it on the list of games of potential future purchase!

This is (most of) my GBA collection. SNES ports aren't on the list even though I have a few. Anything I'm still missing?

(----)

You definitely had more games than I did/do! (or at least at the moment!) Impressive collection!

Here is my paltry collection:

Golden Sun

THPS2

3

4

Super Mario 3

Chu Chu Rocket

Sonic Advance

2

3

Wario Ware

Mario Kart Super Circuit...think that's it at the moment! Don't think I ever completed Golden Sun come to think of it now!

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I found the original GBA to big, I did like the SP design but the Micro now that in my opinion is the best handheld console ever made.

post-18024-0-99662100-1433935877_thumb.p

I still have it with a stackful of games including

Golden Sun

Advance Wars

ZOE - Fist of Mars

Mario Luigi Superstar Saga

Mario Kart Super Circuit

Metroid Fusion & Zero Mission

Super Mario World Advance 2

Yoshi's Island

Final Fantasy Tactics Advance

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This is (most of) my GBA collection. SNES ports aren't on the list even though I have a few. Anything I'm still missing?

Castlevania: Circle of the Moon (22-06-01)
Mario Kart Super Circuit (14-09-01)
Wario Land 4 (16-11-01)
Napoleon (21-11-01)
ChuChu Rocket (07-12-01)
Advance Wars (11-01-02)
Golden Sun (22-02-02)
Sonic Advance (08-03-02)
Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance (11-10-02)
Metroid: Fusion (22-11-02)
Sonic Advance 2 (28-03-03)
FF Tactics Advance (24-10-03)
Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (05-09-03)
Golden Sun: The Lost Age (19-09-03)
Kirby: Nightmare in Dreamland (26-09-03)
Advance Wars 2: Black Hole Rising (03-10-03)
Pokémon Pinball: Ruby & Sapphire (14-11-03)
Metroid: Zero Mission (08-04-04)
Boktai: The Sun Is in Your Hand (14-05-04)
Sonic Advance 3 (18-06-04) 50 F
Kirby and the Amazing Mirror (02-07-04)
Mario Golf Advance Tour (17-09-04) 50 A
The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap (12-11-04)
Advance Guardian Heroes (18-02-05)
Astro Boy: Omega Factor (18-02-05)
Puyo Pop Fever (24-03-05)
WarioWare: Twisted! (19-05-05)
Boktai 2: Solar Boy Django (10-06-05)
Gunstar Future Heroes (04-11-05)
The Tower SP (21-03-06)

What's with the dates?

Kuru Kuru Kuruin

Mario vs DK is a big one missing on that list as well, before the series turned to (imo) poo. I count it as GBA's Mario platformer.

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I think the original GBA has the nicest form factor by a long way. In fact, I find it pretty much the perfect size and shape for a handheld. The SP is too narrow and doesn't have a headphone jack and while the Micro undoubtedly has a lovely screen, it's way too small. I don't exactly have large hands but still found it incredibly uncomfortable to hold.

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I found the original GBA to big, I did like the SP design but the Micro now that in my opinion is the best handheld console ever made.

Yep, love my Gameboy Micro. I'm definitely intrigued to try a Gameboy Advance with backlight though.

My favourite Advance games (just because this is the sort of thread where it seems appropriate to reel them off!) are Advance Wars, Yoshi's Island, Metroid Fusion and Metroid Zero Mission.

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I found the original GBA to big, I did like the SP design but the Micro now that in my opinion is the best handheld console ever made.

The micro is quite attractive, though I'd imagine quite easy to lose being so small! The SP is similar to the way I use the Nintendo DS to play GBA games at the moment, with the hinge. As a note you can choose which DS screen to play the GBA games on, I always pick the top screen, again similar to the SP! I chose the bottom screen recently and it was quite fuzzy in comparison, no doubt related to the fact that that screen is the *touch* screen, with a different texture over it...

Final Fantasy Tactics Advance I want to play!

What's with the dates?

Kuru Kuru Kuruin

Mario vs DK is a big one missing on that list as well, before the series turned to (imo) poo. I count it as GBA's Mario platformer.

The dates are the PAL release dates for each game I'm pretty sure. I searched Sonic Advance's release date, and tallied with the date there! March 8th 2002! I'm pretty sure I got it at a similar time too! Great game (as are the other ones)!

Kuru Kuru Kuruin was a launch title for GBA I think...looks interesting. & so does Mario vs DK, though in regards to GBA's Mario platformer, I would have to say that Super Mario 3 translated very well onto the GBA!

I think the original GBA has the nicest form factor by a long way. In fact, I find it pretty much the perfect size and shape for a handheld. The SP is too narrow and doesn't have a headphone jack and while the Micro undoubtedly has a lovely screen, it's way too small. I don't exactly have large hands but still found it incredibly uncomfortable to hold.

Was definitely intrigued by the GBA shape when I first saw the first photos/concept art of it in magazines, definitely an interesting shape, it certainly was/is quite ergonomic, and definitely agree with being the right size for a portable, the Nintendo DS is a similar size which is the portable I use the most at the moment.

Yep, love my Gameboy Micro. I'm definitely intrigued to try a Gameboy Advance with backlight though.

My favourite Advance games (just because this is the sort of thread where it seems appropriate to reel them off!) are Advance Wars, Yoshi's Island, Metroid Fusion and Metroid Zero Mission.

Forgot about the Metroid GBA games, I've not played any of them yet! Yoshi's Island I so want to play, I wanted to play it on the N64 at the time, but never got the chance...was really excited to find out they would be doing it on the GBA, what with me having a GBA and all (I never had an N64)...but still haven't played it yet!

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I loved the Gameboy Advance; came to it a few years in (bought an Indigo in 2003), sold it in 2004, then got a Cobalt SP in 2005, and a lovely blue Micro in 2006, if I remember the dates right (I'm certain of the first and last dates, but the middle two could be off).

Castlevania, Kuru Kuru Kururin, the Bit Generations games and Super Circuit all gave me a lot of enjoyment, but it was Advance Wars, F-Zero, Fire Emblem, Metroid Fusion, Rhythm Tengoku and WarioWare that made it my favourite Nintendo console of all time. Just so much brilliant content in so tiny a form factor, it was a truly lovely device.

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Castlevania, Kuru Kuru Kururin, the Bit Generations games and Super Circuit all gave me a lot of enjoyment, but it was Advance Wars, F-Zero, Fire Emblem, Metroid Fusion, Rhythm Tengoku and WarioWare that made it my favourite Nintendo console of all time. Just so much brilliant content in so tiny a form factor, it was a truly lovely device.

I just searched the Bit Generations games just now because I hadn't really heard of them (owing to my 'casual gamer' status)..they look interesting! Are they import-only games? (Japanese I think?)

Here is Orbital, 5th game in the series I believe:

'This game is a Katamari Damacy clone set in space.'

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imagejpg1_zps54bf33c3.jpg

'The Most Amazing Promotional Photograph of All Time'

'This is an Arm Holdings promotional photograph, because Arm Holdings did some of the technical stuff inside GBA. They made some of the “silicon chips” that make the graphics work, sources close to Arm Holdings have exclusively confirmed to us today.

This photo might also be taken from the cover of a book entitled ‘How To Lure Children Back To Your House So You Can Have Sex With Them’ but suggesting that would be super-libellous and against the law, even on the internet.

Awesome staring eyes, tangible sense of menace. We spend ages practising this look in the mirror, but for some people it’s a natural gift. [...]

We’re confident there has never been a better promotional photograph than this.' http://ukresistance.co.uk/2005/09/15/th ... -all-time/

(I posted this on RF like literally one year ago, but thought it fit this thread on here!)

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I just searched the Bit Generations games just now because I hadn't really heard of them (owing to my 'casual gamer' status)..they look interesting! Are they import-only games? (Japanese I think?)

Here is Orbital, 5th game in the series I believe:

'This game is a Katamari Damacy clone set in space.'

Yep, they were import only, released very late in the GBA's life - after the DS was out. They had lovely packaging, and I had a particular fondness Dotstream. I was also very disappointed by one of the games - Soundvoyager, which was actually a lovely game, but after a few months just up and died on me, something I've never known a cart-based game do. It wasn't some knock-off either - I bought it first-hand, around release - and it was a particular shame as it was my favourite of the series, tied with Dotstream.

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I just searched the Bit Generations games just now because I hadn't really heard of them (owing to my 'casual gamer' status)..they look interesting! Are they import-only games? (Japanese I think?)

Here is Orbital, 5th game in the series I believe:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YTktCOAxxQg

'This game is a Katamari Damacy clone set in space.'

Soundvoyager is the best one.

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• Napoleon (21-11-01)

I remember that near launch - how is it? Its a strategy game by intelligent System right?

I recommend:

Iridion II - Average shmup - superb music

Yggdra Union - available on PSP

Riviera - available on PSP

Normal Wario Ware is a must!

Japanese:

Rhythm Heaven

Hajime no ippo (treasure boxing game)

Gundam Puyo Puyo (for gundam UC fans only :D )

on my to buy list is:

Go Go Beckham

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