GB Reviews

Castlevania Legends (Game Boy)

Castlevania Legends (Game Boy)

Tainted bloodline

The odds were stacked against Castlevania Legends almost from the start. When it was released towards the end of the '90s, it had the near-impossible task of following Castlevania: Symphony of the Night - a game which had revitalised Konami's gothic series and won widespread critical acclaim. To add to the heady level of...

Wario Land II (3DS eShop / Game Boy)

Wario Land II (3DS eShop / Game Boy)

Greed is good

After the success of the first Wario Land, Nintendo decided to take another shot at putting its beloved new anti-hero in the spotlight. To differentiate it from Mario even further, it removed the "Super Mario Land" prefix and also made a massive gameplay change for Wario Land II. But is it one for the better? Defeated at the end of...

Bill & Ted's Excellent Game Boy Adventure (Game Boy)

Bill & Ted's Excellent Game Boy Adventure (Game Boy)

Dude, where's our phone booth?

You leap about the screen avoiding enemies and collecting “fragments of time”. Grab them all and your phone booth appears to whisk you away to the next level. With characters and locations from the two films, Bill & Ted's Excellent Game Boy Adventure sees you travel across several time-zones in this simple but...

Hyper Lode Runner (Game Boy)

Hyper Lode Runner (Game Boy)

An enjoyable and frustrating title

Arriving in 1983 the original Lode Runner was a platform puzzler that appeared on numerous systems of the time including the NES. More Lode Runner games followed on various platforms including Battle Lode Runner for the PC Engine, whilst the Game Boy's entry in the series was Hyper Lode Runner. The aim of the game is to avoid a few enemies and collect the gold..

R-Type (Game Boy)

R-Type (Game Boy)

R-Lite: cut-down, but still a cracker

Following its original 1987 arcade release, Irem's highly regarded R-Type was ported to numerous home systems, with this Game Boy version appearing in 1991. For those not in the know (estimates range from 2-5 people living under a rock) the aim of the game is to take your space fighter and blast your way through...

James Bond 007 (Game Boy)

James Bond 007 (Game Boy)

Fun portable Bondage

As an MI6 agent with a license to kill, James Bond has obvious video game potential. One option is the first person shooter, as seen with the Nintendo 64's Goldeneye 007, but that's not the only choice. Released not long after Rare's classic, the simply titled James Bond 007 is a very different game, but there's still a lot of...

Dr. Franken (Game Boy)

Dr. Franken (Game Boy)

You got Franken in my Castlevania

There is some common confusion surrounding the tale of Frankenstein, namely the fact that Frankenstein is not really a monster, but rather the mad scientist who creates the bolted-neck creature. Developer MotiveTime avoids this common misstep in their game by simply combining the scientist and monster into the same character. The end result is a pajama-laden doctor..

The Chessmaster (Game Boy)

The Chessmaster (Game Boy)

Far less fiddly than magnetic travel chess

As all the cool kids know chess is a centuries-old strategic board game for two players, played on a eight-by-eight grid. You have 16 pieces that move in different ways, and you may have to plan several moves ahead if you are to successfully checkmate your opponent’s king. The Chessmaster offers fans a portable version of the game to enjoy with the..

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Fall of the Foot Clan (Game Boy)

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Fall of the Foot Clan (Game Boy)

Heroes on your handheld

Turtles, turtles everywhere. By 1990, you could find the four reptile ninjas not only in comics but on TV, t-shirts, toy store shelves and in theatres. Like the majority of the available products, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Fall of the Foot Clan was based on the popular cartoon and sees you battle across five levels to rescue captured reporter April O’Neil. All four of..

Mortal Kombat (Game Boy)

Mortal Kombat (Game Boy)

Krud

Back, back, B. That’s the command that you need to enter to perform Scorpion’s spear move – but you have to do it slowly. Forget the quick tapping that you’d expect for a beat ‘em up, this is something with which you must take your time. It’s the same for all the special moves in the game, an irritant that’s just one of the many...

Batman: The Video Game (Game Boy)

Batman: The Video Game (Game Boy)

Holy platforming joy!

Gotham City is not a safe place to live. Goons and robotic drones roam the streets shooting anything in sight, gun turrets fire on people and heavy objects randomly fall from the sky. If the citizens of Gotham somehow manage to survive all that, they have to contend with the fact that the city was designed and built by prats,...

Mortal Kombat II (Game Boy)

Mortal Kombat II (Game Boy)

A kut down but kompetent konversion

Smoother gameplay, new moves and more characters than its predecessor made Mortal Kombat II a hit with arcade players. The Game Boy port of the first Mortal Kombat had been a sluggish, border-line unplayable mess with terrible music so it seems unlikely anyone would have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of the second game on the system. However arrive it did and..

Faceball 2000 (Game Boy)

Faceball 2000 (Game Boy)

Fun Person Shooter

Shortly before Wolfenstein 3D kick-started interest in the genre, Xanth Software F/X treated Game Boy owners to Faceball 2000: a first-person shooter that saw players working their way through maze-like corridors battling giant smiling faces (Smiloids). Less violent than other FPSs, Smiloids disappear when defeated rather than...

Adventure Island II: Aliens in Paradise (Game Boy)

Adventure Island II: Aliens in Paradise (Game Boy)

Easily one of the Game Boy's best pure platformers.

With the success of their Adventure Island series on the NES console and their first release on the Game Boy platform, Hudson was obviously looking to continue that success with the release of their second Game Boy release. While the game is based on the third NES release, it actually eclipses it in some ways and brings a level of platforming to..

The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening (Game Boy)

The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening (Game Boy)

A treasured classic and the absolute pinnacle of Game Boy gaming.

There were initially some concerns that the gameplay experiences on the Game Boy system might end up being a bit too shallow. Fortunately, that notion was put to rest early on with some of the outstanding releases for the system. Of course no title would shatter that misconception like the release of The Legend of Zelda: Link's..

Operation C (Game Boy)

Operation C (Game Boy)

Does the diminutive adventure bring the big guns?

Let's just get this out of the way now: if you like the NES games, you'll probably dig this entry. Operation C isn't an adaptation or a port (arguably); it is an old-school Contra game. It may lack in a few notable areas, but you'll largely enjoy it. Operation C does a pretty good job of sticking to the series’ formula; a half-naked guy with big..

Kid Dracula (Game Boy)

Kid Dracula (Game Boy)

Nobody parodies their own games quite like Konami!

Konami had already enjoyed some success creating a parody of their Gradius series of shooters with their Parodius releases, so they must have felt like they were on to something when they decided to do the same with their popular Castlevania series back in the early '90s. Kid Dracula basically takes...

Picross 2 (Game Boy)

Picross 2 (Game Boy)

Even more fun with numbers!

Mario's Picross was a very nice attempt at making a Mario game based on Picross puzzles (Or nonograms, as they're sometimes called), but there were a few shortcomings - the biggest of which was that most puzzles just weren't really hard. With a maximum size of 15x15, the game's "toughest" puzzles just didn't...

Final Fantasy Legend III (Game Boy)

Final Fantasy Legend III (Game Boy)

Is the third time the charm for the Final Fantasy Legends series?

Like many of the other NES and Super NES marquee titles of the era, a Final Fantasy appearance on the Game Boy was almost a foregone conclusion. The series began life in Japan under the title of SaGa, but thankfully Squaresoft was kind enough to bring the three Japanese Game Boy releases over to the US. While all three releases..

Castlevania II: Belmont's Revenge (Game Boy)

Castlevania II: Belmont's Revenge (Game Boy)

The second Game Boy Castlevania atones for the sins of its predecessor and ranks as one of the finest entries in the entire series

Before we plough headlong into this review, a short history lesson is probably in order. As the title denotes, Castlevania II: Belmont’s Revenge isn’t the first instalment of Konami’s vampire-slaying franchise to...