Bring ‘Em On!!

On a recent podcast, Brad and Adam talked about some gameboy games that they would like to see on the 3DS virtual console service.  To complement that, here is my list of some personal favorites that I would like to eventually see on the service as well.

1)  Game Boy Wars

Anyone that knows me knows how big a fan I am of the Advanced Wars series.  Well, the Game Boy Wars series was the predessor to all of that.  The gameplay is actually very similar, albeit a little more primitive, but its every bit as addictive and fun.  I really hope we see this one show up on the eShop, so it can finally get the recognition it deserves.


2)  Balloon Kid

Boy, talk about nostalgia.  First off, the music in this game in incredible; probably the best of all gameboy games.  Second, if you’re not familiar, its a sequel to the NES game, Balloon Fight, and is similar to its balloon trip mode, except the whole game is built around it, and has much deeper gameplay.  If you remember, the main mode of Balloon Fight had gameplay similar to the arcade game, Joust.  This is one of my all time favorite game boy games.


3)  Side Pocket

This is the best video game pool I’ve ever played, on any platform.  I realize that’s really high praise for an old gameboy game, but something about the combination of the way it played, and sounded, just made it so enjoyable and addictive.  I could play this game for hours on end.  The music is so great in this game!

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4)  Sokoban (known as Boxxle in the US)

A great, great series that’s been on many platforms.  This gameboy version is my favorite by far because of the personality this game has compared to versions on other platforms.  The gist of the game revolves around moving boxes from their starting points to designated finish points.  The whole game is built around that gameplay.  It sounds simple, but the puzzles can get quite difficult.  There is a free Sokoban app on iTunes, but it doesn’t even come close to the gameboy version.  I would suggest playing the gameboy version over that.


5)  Puzzle Boy (known as Kwirk in the US)

I doubt this was a big hit in the US, but I really do love this game.  The puzzles can get really hard, but its just so much fun.


6)  LoLo

My very first exposure to LoLo (Eggerland) was playing the first game of the series on the Famicom back in the day, which I don’t believe ever came to the US.  If the gameplay of that game could be described, it is like a huge Zelda dungeon with many rooms that can only be opened by clearing an adjacent room.  Unlike Zelda, there is no combat involved, but instead is all about puzzles, and secrets.  The protagonist is a little cute blue ball-like character who looks a little like Kirby.  It was one of my favorite Famicom games, and to get a sequel in portable form was a huge thrill.


LoLo, the Famicom game (There’s some issue with sound in the video below that the original game never had)


7)  Super Chinese Land (known as Ninja Boy in the US)

This game is just fantastic retro fun.  It’s a sequel to the game Super Chinese (Kung Fu Heroes) on the Famicom.  It’s a fighting game, but with an overhead view.  It’s one hit, one kill, which also includes attacks on you, so its very easy to die.  You have 2 attacks at your disposal, a punch, and jump.  You use the jump to land on the head of an enemy to kill them, and they can do the same to you.  The NES game had 2 player coop.

8)  Solomon’s Club
This sequel is every bit as good as its NES counterpart.


9)  Hyper Lode Runner
The same could be said about this game that was said earlier about Sokoban.  This series has been around, but this version is the best way to play it.  There was a DS sequel that came out in Japan, but it just wasn’t as good as this.  Though, I did enjoy the Turbografx version on the Wii VC because it has 4 player versus.


10)  Fist of the North Star
When I was a kid in Asia, there were 2 cartoon series at the time that captured all kid’s imaginations.  The first was the Saint Seiya series.  The not too distant second was The Fist of the North Star.  Both cartoon series had games on the Famicom.  The Saint Seiya game had a lot of Japanese text, so I couldn’t understand it.  Fist of the North Star was a side scrolling fighter, similar to Rygar, and was enjoyable.  This gameboy game differs in that this is a fighter in the vein of Streetfighter.  It qualifies as the first portable fighter, which makes it pretty significant.


11)  Yakuman
Wow, the first portable mahjong game ever made.  Pretty significant.  Not to be confused with the ever popular mahjong solitaire (see below, #12), this is the traditional game of mahjong, minus 2 legs (players).  Its just you against the computer.  Normally, a game of mahjong is played by 4 players, but I suppose it would have been too much to add 2 more AI opponents to a gameboy launch game.  To give you an idea, the card game, Gin Rummy, plays similar to mahjong, but as a very simplified version.  If you have any interest in learning mahjong, I suggest searching online for some rules, and playing some Gin Rummy on Clubhouse Games to give you a vague idea how to play.


12)  Shanghai
The first portable version of mahjong solitaire.  Nowadays, this type of game is everywhere, up to the point of saturation.  But back in the day, it was the first, and it was great!


Honorable Mention:  Mole Mania

I’ve never played this in color, but it sure looks pretty.  This game definitely should have gotten more recognition.  Probably the best gameboy game you most likely never heard of.



Filed under 3DS, Arcade, Box Art, DS, eShop, Gameboy, Import, NES, Nintendo, Podcast, Wii

2 responses to “Bring ‘Em On!!

  1. brad guise

    I’ve never played any of these games except for side pocket. Side note: fist of the north star is awesome.

  2. Alan Chung

    Yeah I heard side pocket is coming out for eshop next week. I’m kind of excited about it. That’s 1 out of the 13 so far Hopefully there’ll be more down the road. I guess we had very different experiences growing up on the gameboy! I think that can only be a good thing, with all the different perspectives.

    Try some of the LoLo games. I highly recommend them. They’re made by HAL, the same guys that did Kirby. If you can play the Family Computer version (the very first LoLo), do that first, because its the best one. It’s hard as hell, about as hard as the first Zelda. If you haven’t heard or played them before, I think you’d be surprised how good they are.

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