Obscure Games from the Gameboy We Would Love to See Return

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Kyle Smith

Publish Date:

4 Jan 2021

During the days when the Nintendo Gameboy was the most popular handheld console on the street, Nintendo seemed to licence an insane number of games for the console. What’s better is that among the large number of games, there were some real obscure games that actually had a lot of ‘fun value’ to them. I mean, we all know about the Mario’s, Zelda’s, Mickey Mouse and all the titles that have continued on to create millions for their respective developers since, but we want to focus on those that never really went on to do much more.

Titus the Fox was a side-scrolling platformer about a young fox on an adventure to save his girlfriend Suzy – much like EVERY OTHER platformer back then. In the game you would have to avoid enemies, by platforming past them to progress through the 15 levels the title offered. Players could throw objects to fight back and this mechanic could also be used to stack items and use these to elevate Titus the fox. Over the generations, games with animal characters as the lead, using puzzle platforming to progress the game with a simple story of saving the ones you love, has been lost. It’s no longer these simple narratives that drive games, but instead complex, deep reasons as to why our characters need to save the world. It would be cool to see an old un-recognised character, with a history (much like Titus’s) come back and start to influence other developers to take thing’s back to the good old simple times and restore platform adventure games to their former glory. I mean use Ratchet and Clank for example, although these are fantastic games, they just don’t hit the same level of joy that titles like Mario bring, with its overly simple storyline and a focus on joyful gameplay. Ratchet and Clank instead uses ‘Aiming and Shooting’ gameplay, ‘Pixar like graphics’ and deep story telling to excel its games, and whilst these things work great for it, it never quite lives up to the greats such as Mario 64 or Banjo Kazooie on the Nintendo 64.

Yes, I know I’ve picked a ‘game of a film’ but go with me here. Star Wars on the Gameboy when looking into it, delivered on a really immersive and fun (albeit hard) Star Wars Experience. You had an open world in which you could drive the ‘Land Speeder’ around to get from Level to Level. You could find characters and unlock new weapons, such as the Lightsaber and Double jump. The game also had specific levels that played differently to match up to that moment of the film. I would love to see someone do this again with the Star Wars universe. I mean, we’ve had games like Fallen Order or Battlefront recently, but what I mean is something between these two titles. A game where you can hop in a vehicle and travel, whilst travelling from ‘level to level’ to progress the story. I know this sounds like the description to Fallen Order, but I mean that with a little more depth. I want to chose between the Lightsaber or Blaster. I want to be able to travel to an area, visit the cantina and speak to its regulars. I think the closest we ever got to this after this title was Knights of the Old Republic, which is a game many fans really want developers Bioware and LucasArts to bring back. So, if you are reading this Bioware/LucasArts, what are you waiting for?!

Game Boy Wars is technically the prequel games that led up to the hit series Advanced Wars. Although, regardless of which set of games you look at, its still a huge missing part of modern gaming. Game Boy Wars is a turn-based strategy, in which two countries are warring against eachother, Red Star and White Moon. You are required to control forces on a map of blocks, which represent a different environment, Capital Cities, Tree Areas, Clear Battlefields etc. As the Commander you have to destroy the enemy’s forces or capture their capital city. To do this you’ll need to build your own army, requiring you to build on your land. Now I know there are many games like this that exist out there, most notably Fire Emblem. But, this isn’t quite what I mean. We get games that either push more towards City Building Strategy games and others that push towards Battle Based Strategy games. We never really see anything in the middle of these anymore. For example on PlayStation, PC and Xbox, there is a game called Age of Wonder Planetfall and whilst you can build cities in this game, and enter turn based battles, you cant actually build a city in the style of something like Command and Conquer. But instead, you navigate through some options and select non-cometic selections to “change” the power within each city. PC Gamers have a huge selection of these game, but on consoles we really lack them. So what I’m saying is, can we get these “Wars” games back, with a focus on both City Building your Base, and great combat to boot?

Rolan’s Curse is game that very much took inspiration from the Zelda Series. Although, it did it in a time where Zelda hadn’t quite defined the style of game that it would be. As a result of this, it can be argued that the Gameboy Zelda games, borrowed some things from Rolan’s Curse, in the same way the Rolan’s Curse borrowed from the Zelda NES titles. The reason I would like to see Rolan’s Curse revived is simply because Zelda has no real rival in the market. If you want to play a ‘Zelda’ like game, then the only option for the best experience is to buy a Nintendo and play Zelda. Rolan’s Curse was a game that did well as per critics reviews but never sold well, with the American developers Sammy leaving the game behind. I think it would be awesome if a decent developer such as Insomniac, who could pick up this IP and bring something to the table that would require Nintendo to compete with someone. Even more so, it would be cool to finally play a game that is of the same style as the Zelda series, but on the other more modern consoles. I know that Ubisoft has just released Fenyx Rising, but I don’t mean a copy of Breath of the Wild, I mean something that aims to be Zelda at its best. Something like Wind Waker, Ocarina of Time or Twilight Princess for example!

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