All hail the Virtual Boy
The Virtual Boy is arguably the worst video game system Nintendo has ever released. It completely bombed in terms of sales and was widely panned by critics and gamers alike due to the discomfort caused by its red monochrome head-mounted display. Despite its lack of success, Nintendo still likes to reference it from time to...
Touted as the “world’s first”
The Virtual Boy was universally panned by critics and goes down in history as Nintendo’s worst system of all-time. Despite this, the 32-bit table-top console with a red monochrome head-mounted display has still managed to develop a cult following over the years. Surprisingly, there’s even a supportive...
"VR gaming could have happened 20 years ago"
No images of the Super Visor exist online, but we'd like to imagine it would have looked like this Argonaut Software founder Jez San has been speaking about a hardware project he worked on with Nintendo that could have given the games industry affordable and effective home VR decades before the Oculus...
The wonders of today
The Virtual Boy has been predominantly inaccessible to the majority of Nintendo fans since its original release. It was hardware arguably ahead of its time, but also technology that was unable to compete with modern standards of the era. The Nintendo 64 was after all released a year later in 1996 and blew the console industry...
The Nintendo Virtual Boy may have gone down in history as the company's grandest folly, but it's clear that there are many fans out there who feel it didn't get a fair crack of the whip. Team VUEngine is a group of Virtual Boy enthusastis who want to resurrect the failed console with a series of new homebrew titles. A...
Are you team real or team fake?
Here's one to get us all arguing about assets and fonts into the weekend - someone claims to have images of a 'lost' Virtual Boy game called Star Fox: Red Zone. Hm... Someone called Sparky_78 on Reddit posted the following images; they seem to be the same person that posted the details as Kallus on Assembler Games...
"Do you know what this WOULD have cost?"
iRetrogamer's Tyler Esposito has a wealth of home movie recordings made by his late father, who was gaming mad and got his son hooked on all kinds of interactive entertainment. His latest offering focuses on two Nintendo products with totally different fates - the Game Boy and the
It makes perfect sense!
Poor old George Costanza. This neurotic, self-loathing character from the popular comedy sitcom Seinfeld never did have much luck in life. It turns out in addition to being unfortunate in love (and virtually everything else) George also made equally terrible choices when buying video gaming hardware. While idly relaxing at...
But we love it
A short while ago we shared an episode of the The Ben Heck Show where he deconstructed and repaired a Virtual Boy; it was an interesting look into how the machine works. Now, as promised, a follow-up episode rebuilds it and tries to modernise the device, dispensing of the infamous 'stand' and redesigning it as a head mounted display...
The Ben Heck Show continues its fine work
Regular readers of these pages will be increasingly familiar with the work of The Ben Heck Show, which provides some interesting engineering-focused videos. It does this, often, with a focus on gaming systems, including teardowns and customisations of iconic consoles from various companies, including...
Graphics so good they'll give you a headache
The 3DS has done a remarkable job in the current economic climate, cutting out a respectable install base several million units sold over it's run. Of course, in the early days of the console, many believed that it would be a failure due to the unfortunate historical precedent that was the Virtual Boy...
"I don't recall anybody literally throwing up in the office, we were lucky"
While the dismal commercial performance of the Wii U has made headlines recently, it's a long way from being Nintendo's most famous failure - that unwelcome accolade falls to the Virtual Boy, which sold around 770,000 units globally back in the '90s. The console is blamed...
With a little help from Google Cardboard
The Virtual Boy wasn't a success, that much is beyond debate. It sold poorly and effectively led to Gunpei Yokoi's departure from Nintendo - a sad event when you consider how much he had done to make the company such a force in the field of toys and video games. Despite its commercial failure the system still...
According to creator Gunpei Yokoi
Virtual Reality may be back in favour these days, but back in the mid-'90s the initial burst of interest in the technology was starting to wane, and for many players the straw that broke the camel's back was the much-hyped Nintendo Virtual Boy. Released in 1995 to almost complete consumer apathy, the console lacked...
"Not really a VR device, IMO"
The Virtual Boy is well known among keen Nintendo followers - it was a quirky device that flopped commercially and, for quite some time, was effectively ignored by Nintendo. It was also a major early dalliance with 3D technology from the company, though the name and form factor makes some consider it to be a virtual...
"It seemed the game had drawn a lot of attention within Nintendo"
This piece appears in full in John Szczepaniak's Untold History of Japanese Game Developers: Volume 2, and is republished in part with kind permission. This interview signifies how unpredictable journalism can be. I was sitting in the Agatsuma office interviewing Yasuo Nakajima, and...
"I think we were right in turning it down"
Former Sega of America boss Tom Kalinske was in charge of the company during its glory years, and it was under his leadership that it was able to challenge the might of Nintendo during the early '90s. Full of interesting stories and anecdotes, Kalinske's story has been told in Blake J. Harris' excellent...
It's no secret that the Virtual Boy - which recently had it's 20 year anniversary - wasn't the greatest success for Nintendo. Launched in 1995 to almost complete consumer apathy in North America, it bypassed Europe entirely and was discontinued the following year. Could this negative experience in launching a VR product have put...
Nintendo's most famous failure is getting on a bit
According to the history books, the Virtual Boy is Nintendo's biggest failure — both commercially and critically — in the hardware arena. Launched 20 years ago today on 21st July 1995 in Japan to almost complete consumer apathy, it bypassed Europe entirely and was discontinued the following...
In honour of a fellow Virtual Boy fan that passed away
The Virtual Boy is a true oddity in Nintendo's history - though the company has acknowledged the curious system recently, it was largely ignored for years due to its status as the company's biggest ever flop. Never even released in Europe, it was undeniably a commercial disaster for the famous...
Even Rocky couldn't handle these metallic brutes
Once more, we dip into the red and black-hued land of the Virtual Boy, with yet another 3D video for your enjoyment! Do you like Punch-Out!!? Silly question, of course you do. Well, what if it was in 3D and had robots? Teleroboxer makes this dream a reality. Watch as we duck, dip, dive duck and...
We hope you like red lines
Thanks to the power of the New Nintendo 3DS's updated Internet Browser, you are now able to watch YouTube videos in 3D. We've been using this little-known feature to bring you a series of videos based around the Virtual Boy, Nintendo's first attempt at 3D gaming from the mid '90s. For our third look through the visor...
Last week, we experimented with releasing a 3D video of Virtual Boy Wario Land, and you said you wanted more. So we're giving you more! Released in 1995, does Galactic Pinball successfully translate the exciting, fast gameplay of pinball, with the addition of migraines? In this video, we take a look and quickly realise that we're not...
Because, why not?
Street Fighter II was massive back in the day. After launching on the SNES it would be ported to practically every other games machine on the face of the planet, including the monochrome Game Boy. One format that didn't get it was the ill-fated Virtual Boy - understandable when you consider how much of a commercial bomb it was -...
We still love it
The Virtual Boy is 19 years old in North America today, having arrived in the region on 14th August 1995. It doesn't have a European anniversary to celebrate, as it never had a release in the region. It's a system that shows us a few aspects of Nintendo that remain today, in some ways representing its key strengths. Nintendo...
"It's like digital archaeology"
The Virtual Boy was, for a sustained period, ignored and essentially wiped from Nintendo's history — it was only released in Japan and North America and flopped, with only 22 official games making it to market. The company's stance has softened in recent times, with the system making cameo appearances in quirky 3DS...
Nintendo's nadir, or misunderstood masterpiece?
According to the history books, the Virtual Boy is Nintendo's biggest failure — both commercially and critically — in the hardware arena. Launched in 1995 to almost complete consumer apathy, it bypassed Europe entirely and was discontinued the following year. It is also thought to be the reason...
ROM will be uploaded to the net for free once all copies are sold
It would seem that Nintendo's much-maligned Virtual Boy console is undergoing something of a renaissance at present. Last month we reported that Bound High - a Virtual Boy game which never saw the light of day when the console was originally released - had gone into production...
Better late than never
Bound High was originally shown at the 1996 E3, but like all of the other Virtual Boy games demonstrated at that event, ended up being cancelled when it was clear that the console's fate was sealed. Since then, the game has become famous with hardcore Virtual Boy fans, with its source code floating around the web and a...
Play a game of Tetris in his honour
Gunpei Yokoi was one of Nintendo's original star employees. His inventions made the company millions, with the Game & Watch series kick-starting a period of portable dominance for the firm which was cemented further by the launch of the insanely successful Game Boy - possibly Yokoi's most enduring legacy...
Keeps a strange photo in his console
Late last year, Reggie Fils-Aime invited Virtual Boy fans to speak up if they wanted Virtual Boy games on the 3DS, and lately the question came up again, this time pitched to Shigeru Miyamoto. GameSpot asked Miyamoto-san if there was interest in bringing Virtual Boy games to 3DS, to which the great man replied:...
3DS's granddaddy featured
You might be getting all geared-up for the new 3DS, but it's not the first dedicated 3D console from Nintendo: that honour belongs to the good old Virtual Boy, the now notorious machine that launched in the mid 1990s. Now is the perfect time, with 3DS just around the corner, to revisit the machine's creation, games and its...
You never know, it might work
With the news that 3DS will offer downloads of GameBoy and GameBoy Color titles came the inevitable question: "would Nintendo also offer Virtual Boy games to download?" First, you have to convince Reggie Fils-Aime, Nintendo of America's president. Speaking to Kotaku, Fils-Aime said As a consumer, I have...
All you need to know should you attempt to fix one
Why call out a plumber when you can fix the problem yourself? Why buy a sandwich when you can make your own for less? Perhaps more annoying than blocked u-bends and fancy lunches where the bread costs more than the meat is when electrical goods breakdown. Machines are supposed to just work – and...
The father of handheld gaming gets remembered in a hands-on tribute
Gunpei Yokoi pretty much created the handheld gaming market. His line of Game & Watch systems eventually paved the way for Nintendo's full-fledged portable gaming system, the Game Boy, also created by Yokoi. Before making video games though, he created a slew of toys that helped...
Unfinished title sees the red light of day at last
There's nothing we love more here at Nintendo Life than a good story of triumph against the odds: a plumber defeating a fire-breathing lizard; a hedgehog stopping the plans of an evil genius; and the continued hard work of ardent fans that finally saw Bound High, an unreleased Virtual Boy game, to a playable status. A few years ago, the game's..
Play it on the TV with this handy accessory!
3D gaming is on the cusp of being cool again after some of the remarkable damage done to its reputation by Nintendo's less-than stellar Virtual Boy machine. The onset of eyestrain and headaches did the machine no favours, but if you've picked one up and fancy playing it on a more comfortable surface, such as your prize gaming TV, your time has come..
Nintendo's much-maligned machine gets the retroinspection treatment
Here's some good news for those of you that have been keenly following Dave's excellent Virtual Boy reviews and are now thirsting for more information on the machine. UK-based magazine Retro Gamer recently ran a 5-page feature on the platform in issue 64, which leading Virtual Boy site Planet Virtual Boy has kindly scanned and put..
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