Game Boy is back (sort of): Meet Hyperkin’s Ultra Game Boy
Nintendo has discovered that remaking its old consoles is a licence to print money but has presumably left the Game Boy in the “to do” pile to be tackled once the company finishes counting all its Switch money. That has left a gap in the market that peripherals manufacturer Hyperkin intends to fill.
With the working title of “Ultra Game Boy,” Hyperkin’s creation – currently on display at CES 2018 in Las Vegas – is an attempt to bring the jaunty Tetris music into 2018.
To that end, as well as having a full aluminium case to better prevent the nicks and dings the original was a magnet for, the Ultra Game Boy has a number of other mod cons.
A six-hour battery, rechargeable via USB Type-C cable, is the main one, alongside a backlit screen which can be turned up and down depending on how much of a sucker for punishment you intend to be. It also has stereo speakers – which may feel like overkill for a device that can only run mono games but is apparently aimed at chiptune musicians.
It’ll run classic Game Boy games, and maybe Game Boy Color titles as well, and will sell for under $100, we’re told.
It’s interesting to speculate about what Nintendo makes of all this (and I’ve reached out to Hyperkin to ask if they’ve had discussions), but one way of sidestepping their ire is by offering no onboard storage. This is a device that runs original cartridges, not ROMs, so at least doesn’t infringe on Nintendo’s copyrights in that respect.
Or perhaps they just don’t care because they’ve already brought the Game Boy back for the 2000s with the Game Boy Advance SP – which is not only backwards compatible with original Game Boy and Game Boy Color titles but runs Game Boy Advance games too – something that the Ultra does not.
Or if you like a challenge have tiny fingers, and a lot of patience you could always make your own keyring-sized version.