News Article

APRIL FOOLS: Virtual Boy Confirmed for Virtual Console

Posted by Damien McFerran

Ok, so we jumped the gun a little by posting this a day early but we did at least say the press conference was on April 1st! Sorry for getting everyone so excited (who would have thought Nintendo's biggest hardware failure would be so welcome on the Virtual Console?) and thanks for taking it in the spirit it was intended...look forward to next year, folks! ;)

It may rank as one of Nintendo’s biggest mistakes but the ill-fated Virtual Boy is finally getting a new lease of life thanks to the company’s retro download portal.

In a press release expected tomorrow Nintendo will confirm that the much-maligned console is to be added to the line-up that currently includes such past classics as the SNES and Megadrive/Genesis. We've been handed the information early thanks to a source within Nintendo of America, who understandly has asked to remain nameless.

The Virtual Boy was produced by Gameboy creator Gunpei Yokoi in 1995 and was a catastrophic failure, prompting Yokoi’s ignominious departure from the company. It was supposed to offer realistic 3D visuals not entirely dissimilar to those seen in ‘Virtual Reality’ style games, but the results were less than impressive; the unit was too bulky to be portable and users complained of headaches after prolonged play. Although the console saw a US release, it never made it to European shores so this could be the first chance Euro Nintendo fans will have to experience this unique machine.

Yokoi would later help design Bandai’s Gameboy rival The Wonderswan and was tragically killed in a car accident in 1997; sadly the spectre of the Virtual Boy still hangs over his name, despite the amazing success he enjoyed with the Gameboy.

Given the unique nature of the console, one might question how well suited it is for play on a normal television set, but apparently those clever chaps at Nintendo have found a workaround. There will be an option to play the game in ‘faux-3D’ and use a pair of those cheap cardboard 3D glasses that are usually handed out whenever you go to see a film at the cinema that happens to boast 3D visuals. If you don’t fancy looking like a fool then you can simply play without the 3D effect enabled, although we would imagine the appeal is noticeable lessened.

Nintendo hasn’t confirmed exactly when Virtual Boy software will become available on the service but we would expect it to be in the next few months. Watch this space.

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User Comments (141)

heroftime

#2

heroftime said:

WHAT!!??

Now, i'll be albe to destroy the red pixels out of my tv, all i need now is a "green" game so all my colors are busted

BDPatVCR

#6

BDPatVCR said:

rofl
xnay on the prilay oolsfay ayday :p
i wonder how many media will pick this up :-)

BDPatVCR

#7

BDPatVCR said:

rofl
xnay on the prilay oolsfay ayday :p
i wonder how many media will pick this up :-)

nsjay06

#8

nsjay06 said:

Probably the most obvious April Fool's joke ever! There would be no point in having virtual boy games on the VC since they would look 2D.

BDPatVCR

#9

BDPatVCR said:

rofl
xnay on the prilay oolsfay ayday :p
i wonder how many media will pick this up :-)

BJ1

#11

BJ1 said:

Oh, boy. Well, I guess ALL Nintendo consoles had to make it, sometime.

DazzaAdmin

#14

Dazza said:

Wow this is cool news, what next Gameboy games? That would be awesome :p

Will

#15

Will said:

No way. I would never have believed it if I didnt see it here. This is crazy, but great news!! So what were the good games on VB?

Charco

#16

Charco said:

This is great news!! I can't wait for these games, they are all supposed to be excellent!! Finger's crossed that the Jaguar is confirmed to be added tomorrow too!!!!!!!!!!!!

Adam

#17

Adam said:

While the hardware may have been a colossal failure, the software definitely warrants a second look. I have waited so long to replay Mario Clash and Jack Bros, not to mention Wario Land and quite a few others.

Charco

#18

Charco said:

Hey Will, táim cinnte go bhfuil an fógra seo bréagach. Dúirt me go bhfuil sé bréagach agus tar éis cúpla nóiméad bhí mo fógra imithe!!!!

jordanr

#20

jordanr said:

You almost had me there until I read the line "press release expected tomorrow"

SepticLemon

#21

SepticLemon said:

Though thinking about it, early GameBoy Games would be cool to see on the Virtual Console, thing is I almost own them all and have a Super GameBoy and GameBoy Player. Unless you could put them onto the DS, that would be cool!

But what next though? Tiger Electronics games! lollers

Eva

#22

Eva said:

Good news! OK less than 25 games released including stinkers and decidedly average games, but there were some greats too. Hopefully, they'll release some of the pricer titles as well. There's a good VB site here: http://www.virtual-boy.org/

arobo21

#25

arobo21 said:

LOL these games should be no more than 300 points.
why?
1. experience is not there with the headset.
2. its in black and red!!!!!
3. there's probably one good game (wario land)
4. the system was a complete flop

HOW DARE THEY RELEASE VB BEFORE GB _

Lugia2

#26

Lugia2 said:

Well dang. Does this mean we're getting...

Oh forget it. I was shocked until I noticed "Press release" tomorrow. Think this'll ever actually happen?

Mike1

#27

Mike1 said:

And yet another system with less games coming every week. Give us your classics Nintendo, not some system that failed.

Quimby

#28

Quimby said:

Awesome, screw all you naysayers- I want my vb! I always wanted to import it, and now I won't have to. And with so few games, Nintendo could have them all on before this time 2025. Yay!

Sage_Joch

#32

Sage_Joch said:

Nice one Damo, but you're 1 day to early! April Fool's is tomorrow! :-)
Nice try though

MrP

#33

MrP said:

Yeah, this is why April Fools is hated these days. Because people decide to shake things up so you can't trust news up to a week before the ACTUAL April fools.

Quimby

#35

Quimby said:

Oh, come on now, can't you guys just go with it? I'm trying to dream of sweet vb mediocrity and your all so untrusting. VCReviews wouldn't lie to us like that... Not on March 31st. ;-) Next stop Octopus on Game & Watch. Man that would rock.

StarDust4Ever

#36

StarDust4Ever said:

I call first dibs on Wario Land and Galactic Pinball. Knowing Nintendo, I predict the price will be 700 points - that is, assuming this is not a hoax or some BS speculation.

P.S. --> If this is just some April Fools prank, just know there are still a lot of trigger-happy fanboys out there who have a license for "SHOOT-TO-KILL"

Quimby

#37

Quimby said:

I heard that if you download Super Street Fighter 2: New Challengers, beat the game on full stars and enter your name as bertnernie that Akuma is unlocked... Although I'm not sure how this is relevant.
PS. Manicfatty & Co. - I indakay ellfay orfos isfum apcray.. tillunay ethos assesglay

Eva

#40

Eva said:

I'll almost be annoyed if this is either a Nintendo April Fool's joke that leaked out early, or just Damo lying to us. If we do end up with some VB VC goodness though, how good this news is will depend on price.

Kelvin

#41

Kelvin said:

Wow! This is great news! Hopefully the Binatone Orange isn't far behind. ;)

DjinnFighter

#42

DjinnFighter said:

"In a press release expected tomorrow Nintendo will confirm"

Yeah yeah, Nintendo will confirm that on April 1st....
Looks like an april fool to me !

elbo21

#44

elbo21 said:

I hope it's not a joke! I was one of those suckers who bought the VB when it came out... and yes, it did give me headaches and blurry vision -- but I loved Wario Land! It was a great game and I would def download it if it came to the VC. But I guess we'll have to wait and see if this is an April Fool's joke............ the idea that we'd have to get 3D glasses just to play these makes me highly suspicious! ;{

Bensei

#45

Bensei said:

If it's not a joek I hope EU gets it too. Making it US and Jap exclusive would make me sad...

KhaoShar

#46

KhaoShar said:

IMO the VB should stay were it is: burried and forgotten. BUT I guess I could be seriously interested if N decided to, say, remake some of the better games as Wii-Ware titles. With, like, colours you know? They still could program a 3-D effect into it and they could ship 3-D goggles to anyone who wants them like they do with replacement wriststrapps and wii-mote protectors X*

Cipher

#47

Cipher said:

A press release.
Tomorrow.
Yes, tomorrow.

...Remind me what day it is tomorrow?

RETROnoob

#49

RETROnoob said:

oh god no! I hope they go for like 100 points each coz I won't be payin for them.

NikeXTC

#52

NikeXTC said:

It could be a joke... It wouldn't be a great loss, but I think I'd buy at least one game just for curiosity =P

Tim

#53

Tim said:

It's too bad just about all of the VirtualBoy games suck. They should have focus their efforts on GameBoy instead.

Splutter

#56

Splutter said:

A day to early guys you needed to save this for tomorrow, I'm guessing April Fools, had me going for a while though

ChocoDK

#57

ChocoDK said:

Wow I forgot it was April Fools Day tomorrow >=O! I can't believe I fell for this but I was wondering how it could be done.

Sadly people always remember the bad more then the good (in regards to the creator of the Gameboy and Virtual Boy).

Gary_Oak

#58

Gary_Oak said:

Why this piece of junk and not anything better? I demand an explanation Nintendo!

Zinjak

#60

Zinjak said:

well yeah this is almost assuredly an april fools joke, i was hoping for wario land, it was the only reason to own that damn thing and honoestly it was a really good reason.

they just need to start giving us old school gameboy titles really.

Rossi

#61

Rossi said:

We can tell whats going to come out for this or what should! I would only buy warioland.. Its not an april fools.. it has been featured on many sites..

Fwow13

#63

Fwow13 said:

I know it's just a joke, but I still love the idea. I hope Nintendo pays attention to sites like this, because if they really did release VB I would be downloading the games as soon as they came. I know the system was a HUGE waste of time and money, but for some reason I still liked it. Just like some people out there like to play E.T. for the Atari just because it was such a horrible game. This is a great idea in my opinion and I wish it were true.
(I'd also like add my vote for the original GameBoy to the rest in these comments. It's one of my favorite Nintendo systems, and deserves some space on my Wii.)

Tim

#65

Tim said:

"...I still liked it. Just like some people out there like to play E.T. for the Atari just because it was such a horrible game"(Fwow13)

If you like playing horrible games you must love the selection on the wii.

Tides_of_Chaos

#66

Tides_of_Chaos said:

Even though this is probably an early April Fool's Day joke, I hope this is true. The VB wasn't all that bad actually, I mean Wario Land was on it, 3D Tetris was on it and this one Punch-Out-type game was on it and they are all supposedly pretty good.

GameGod3008

#67

GameGod3008 said:

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! I hate these sort of jokes and there was no way Nintendo would release this but you had my hopes up there.

Rolls into Fetal(?)( i think that's how it's spelled) Position and starts crying
LOL

Bass_X0

#68

Bass_X0 said:

the announcement of super mario rpg would have gotten more of a response.

Manicfatty

#70

Manicfatty said:

I actually have a virtual boy, an it's fun in short bursts. I wish I could say that I have any hope for this being anything other than a prank, but I can't. Funny though. It's interesting tech though.

There were a few decently fun games, and I even found myself getting hooked on the Baseball game. The shooter I have (Vertical Force, I think it's called) is decent and fun. I DID have the headache problem, myth for everyone else or not. From what I understand of the system, it was probably due to the Stereoptic-like effect created by the mirror mechanism. I get the same thing from games with choppy or low frame rates. I remember switching between playing my Nomad, and the Virtual Boy to let my brain rest, but not lose valuable gaming time! I was a little more hardcore back then. Now I'd probably just shut everything down for a little while :P

Jazzem

#71

Jazzem said:

Dammit, I was excited for a moment then! I really want to play Wario Land VB :(

J_K

#73

J_K said:

Fun...had one of these before. I'd love another crack at Mario Clash, Red Alarm, Nester's Funky Bowling and a few others.

Thing is...April 1st is tomorrow. The post also mentions that a press release would come tomorrow which is April Fools Day. Personally I call bullsh*t on it, but hey it would be nice to be proven wrong on this one.

Kawaiipikachu

#75

Kawaiipikachu said:

Gee if this was real would be nice but today i'm suss about it .

=edit=
I was right it was an april fool but i wish it was true as i would like to enjoy vb games without damaging my eyes .

morphballer

#76

morphballer said:

Normally yes. But on the Internet it is much more effective to do it before April 1st.

Good one though.

morphballer

#77

morphballer said:

Under real world circumstances yes. But on the Internet it is more effective to do it before everyone knows what day it is.

Good one by the way.

Kawaiipikachu

#79

Kawaiipikachu said:

I'm not sure to believe this or not .
I fully believed it at first then i thought about the “Not exactlyportable is it” caption wich then i realise that that the Virtual Console never had any portables .
I'm pretty doubtful its true thru it would me nice to play Virtual Boy games on vc & without the eye damage but i wait till tomorrow to find out for sure .

=edit=
Yes i am right you guys at VCR gave me all the clues i needed to tell me this is an april fools .

hamispink

#82

hamispink said:

I just hope for for the gameboy, perfect to finish my virtual console collection of my real world consoles

Serpent

#83

Serpent said:

OMG Nintendo is soooo crazy for putting this on VC. Zomg i thought nintendo wanted to forget this system.

This has to be a april fools joke.It would be too predictable on april first so they choose to do it on may 31. :p

dossaer

#85

dossaer said:

lolz Shame it's a joke because I'd like to try out Red-Alarm again on a bigger screen.

That_One_Guy

#86

That_One_Guy said:

As far as I am concerned, will not be worth it unless they are dirt cheap. That, and want to see full-color remakes.

Maybe that is just me...

Zinjak

#87

Zinjak said:

remember ppl, on the internet you have to do your april fools jokes early to get more of a rise ( you trick more people that way) its been happening for years ( remember the Wisp as the new alliance race for Burning crusade, that was days before April 1st when blizzard pulled that crap) so dont give me that " guys its still a day away" crap, we all know what this is.

dark_moogle

#88

dark_moogle said:

It just wont be the same without that giant headpiece keeping you locked into the game escalating the chance for seizures.

Clayfrd

#90

Clayfrd said:

If GB games come out, I can finally get Super Mario Land 1 & 2. Was there a third?

jg233

#91

jg233 said:

April Fool's jokes just aren't funny... especially when it comes to the Virtual Console :|

SP49833

#92

SP49833 said:

the press release comes out tomorrow.
on april's fool day.
i honestly wish this was true, though.

MasterMario

#93

MasterMario said:

Has Nintendo officially become insane? How in the would you play this game unless you had 3-D glasses with you somewhere. I hope that this is a April fool prank.

MasterMario

#94

MasterMario said:

For those of you saying that the GB should also be added, it would be unlikely. I picture the next Nintendo handheld haveing the services similar to the wii shop channel. That might include GB, GBA, and the Game Gear.

Draygone

#95

Draygone said:

Aren't Game Gear games supposedly going to be included among Master System games, though? Something about their engines being similar enough.

Anyway, I also call April Fool's, but I also wish it were true so I could get ahold of games like Wario Land. (BTW, to Clayfrd, the first Wario Land on the B&W Game Boy was subtitled as the third Mario Land game, even though it technically wasn't.)

Adamant

#96

Adamant said:

Yeah, the Game Gear was pretty much a portable Master System, and a lot of games were just ported straight over.

dark_moogle

#97

dark_moogle said:

@Draygone

There was also an accessory for the Game Gear that let you use Master System cartridges instead of GG games, making it literally a 'portable' Master System

Will

#98

Will said:

.................................................................................................................................................(This is me giving VC review the silent tretment after this cruel hoax)

Charco

#99

Charco said:

I had a feeling something was up yesterday when my posts were deleted mysteriously after I said this was an April Fools joke. I decided to post something about hoping for the Atari Jaguar being announced and that was left unedited. Haha, I hope we get the BBC Micro next month....

KeeperBvK

#100

KeeperBvK said:

@ Charco: Well, other early posts about this being an april fool's joke weren't deleted, like mine for example. ^^

BDPatVCR

#101

BDPatVCR said:

Nice one Damo ...
I think it's also the first news without any posts on storage space ... HOORAY :p
Next april fools you can say that Ninty will bring out an HD-drive !
Or maybe not, if u wanna survive april 2nd :-)

Kawaiipikachu

#104

Kawaiipikachu said:

Next year Dreamcast .
Think of it the gd-rom disc are 1gb capacity so it would not fit in the wiis 512mb(300mb usable) memory unless Nintendo finally sorts out the storage problem wishing for it to happen .

konkerdoodle

#106

konkerdoodle said:

"I think it's also the first news without any posts on storage space ... HOORAY"
"unless Nintendo finally sorts out the storage problem wishing for it to happen ."
NOOOO!!!! So close...
Nice one. I particularly liked the part about wearing the 3-D glasses :)

jg233

#107

jg233 said:

I was actually ***** wanting to try the virtual boy! ** you VC-reviews >:(

Eva

#109

Eva said:

I wouldn't be surprised if VB titles are added to a portable version of the VC on whatever the succesor to the DS is. Didn't I hear something about that (portable VC) a while ago? I suppose today isn't really the best day to be asking though lol - OK it's gone 12, but if we're doing April Fool jokes in March I guess all rules are out the window. I don't think I'll believe anything for the rest of the month :L

In other news Sheng Long in SFIV:
http://blog.capcom.com/archives/1089 :)

Knux

#110

Knux said:

I heard this rumor from another website about a VC on the Nintendo DS. I think they said something about dowloading Game Boy games on a NDS storage card and playing it on the NDS. Virtual Boy? Never played it.

slangman

#112

slangman said:

Awwww i wish i logged onto this site yeasterday. :(

Would be kinda cool if the VB did come to the VC though.

Viral

#113

Viral said:

Did anyone else notice that some of the Virtual Console games if you go back towards the buy menu, you can download "updates"? Anyone have any ideas?

stokley316

#116

stokley316 said:

i really love this site, it's sad that you guys get involved in this april fools bs. I'm dissapointed.

stinssd

#117

stinssd said:

You're not going to believe this, but I predicted this joke--either this, or Sega CD! :)

Clayfrd

#120

Clayfrd said:

You should have said that Atari was joining the Brawl... err... VC with the 2600, and that the first release would be Custer's Revenge!

Clayfrd

#121

Clayfrd said:

Oh, and thank you Draygone. I still think the VC could make a lot of money if the offered GB,GBC, and GBA games on VC.

agent_lime

#122

agent_lime said:

You should have taken the time to also announce the VC releases for the 7th of april:
Chrono trigger
super mario RPG
Earthbound

Draygone

#125

Draygone said:

Personally, I'd rather the joke would be for the Virtual Boy and not one of those anticipated games a few others say VC-Reviews should've AFd. That would have been cruel and a horrible disappointment. At least the Virtual Boy is just a "darn, but I guess it's to be expected".

StarDust4Ever

#127

StarDust4Ever said:

@Damo: Those trigger-happy fanboys I mentioned earlier just booked a plane to the U.K. and should be arriving at your house shortly....

hahaha just kidding :P

Mike1

#131

Mike1 said:

...another reason why I hate April Fool's. Every clown on the internet has come up with a stupid joke.

elbo21

#132

elbo21 said:

Evil. You guys are pure evil. I really wanted Wario Land! I've been waiting years for that game to come out in some form -- any chance Nintendo may remake it in color?

Bass_X0

#134

Bass_X0 said:

They never even gave the Super Mario Lands the All*Stars treatment, sadly. If they had ever released a collection title of the original games, I'd get it.

Timmy

#136

Timmy said:

@Clayfrd: You should have said that Atari was joining the Brawl... err... VC

LOL your right there were so many fake brawl characters

NintendoNerd

#137

NintendoNerd said:

no one would buy any of the games except for worio land and still i wouldnt give more than 300 wii points for it unless they add color.

Fireballmario

#138

Fireballmario said:

LOL you can't make a better joke?
Sorry if this is disturbing, but the gameboy coming on the virtual console would have been better. Sorry any one who likes the virtual boy, but this is gonna be fake for probably forever.

waldojeffershead

#141

waldojeffershead said:

This is outstanding! I was almost starting to regret selling my Virtual Boy to someone off of Craig's List last month. I sold my Atari Jaguar also, now if they would only answer my prayers for "Tempest 2000"

-WALDO

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