There’s a chance Nintendo could be working on a Mini/Classic version of a Game Boy. Of all the older Nintendo consoles that need to be brought into the 21st century, the Game Boy is probably at the bottom of the list.
The news surfaced of a trademark, filed last month by Nintendo, involving the Game Boy. It was tweeted out by a trademark bot — in Japanese, natch, so I’m working from translations provided by VG247. Naturally, this is enough to spark discussion about whether a Game Boy Classic is on its way.
— 商標速報bot (@trademark_bot) October 6, 2017
There’s every chance in the world that this is just by-the-numbers trademark filing by the company and doesn’t point to a larger agenda. But I would have said the same thing two years ago about the NES Classic and look where we are now. I’ve learned not to discount any possibility from Nintendo.
But why bring back the Game Boy? Sure, there might be some benefit to a handheld that comes pre-loaded with classic games, for convenience’s sake if nothing else. But it still seems pointless compared with the idea behind the NES classic and the SNES Classic.
Now, to be upfront, I have no problem with Nintendo resurfacing their old consoles in tiny form. Each of the consoles they’ve shrunk so far originally worked with a CRT TV, meaning they needed updating in order to work with modern televisions — and several of the games on those consoles aren’t really available on modern consoles. That’s not the case for the Game Boy.
The Game Boy and its prettier, backwards-compatible offspring don’t need TVs in order to work. They come with their own screens, meaning even the oldest ones are still capable of functioning just fine despite the march of time and technological innovation. And the aforementioned backwards-compatible handhelds (the Gameboy Color, Advance, etc) already offer a more up-to-date way of playing Game Boy games.
So unless the company is planning to make a Game Boy that works with TVs, there’s no way it can make the Game Boy more relevant and necessary to a modern audience than it already is. And we’ve already got a Nintendo handheld that works with a TV. It’s called the Switch — you may have heard of it.
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