Virtual Boy: The bizarre rise and quick fall of Nintendo’s enigmatic red console (
from to on 16 May 2024 00:07


threaded - newest on 16 May 2024 00:09 next collapse

I, for one, loved this thing. And the only reason I was ever able to own one was because of their downfall also coincidentally happening about the same time EB Toys was going out of business, so I was able to get the Virtual Boy and most of the games for under $50 due to the extreme discounts. on 16 May 2024 00:11 next collapse

My best friend had one and Mario tennis was my favorite thing ever.

I loved the virtual boy on 16 May 2024 00:13 next collapse

That’s literally how I got mine, though from Babbages when they were still a thing. I think I paid like $35 + tax for the unit (which came with Mario Tennis) and Wario Land.

Loved it, but I can see why it failed. Still, 3D Mario Tennis was amazing. on 16 May 2024 00:39 collapse

AND warioland!!!

The virtual boy is Nintendos coolest console that deserved to fail. It had some good games in it’s tiny library. It brought some cool concepts to the project. But the virtual console deserved to die. on 16 May 2024 00:48 collapse

Yeah, it was a cool concept, but the execution was terrible. For all its faults, the one I can’t overlook is the fact that it required 6xAA batteries (that it would chew through in 2-3 hours). LIke, WTF? Its design literally required you to use it on a table/stationary location. They sold an AC adapter for it, but it was a separate purchase. on 16 May 2024 23:36 next collapse

If you had a super nintendo it was the same cord. Just like the game gear used the genesis cord.

But they never designed AC cords with the regular game boy. Which still makes me mad. NES or SNES power cord, and I’d have been happy as a kid… on 16 May 2024 23:39 collapse

Was it? The one I remember clipped onto the back of the controller in place of the battery box. Or did it have a power port on the unit itself ?(it’s been forever lol)

My OG Game Boy had a 6v DC input on the side. My off-brand rechargeable pack for it plugged in there instead of clipping into the battery compartment. on 17 May 2024 00:52 collapse

There was an official Nintendo Battery Pack for the Gameboy that used that side input, too. It plugged in with the same 2-prong cord that my sister’s mini boom box used. on 17 May 2024 02:33 collapse

Yeah I remember a friend got one for Christmas and we all went over to play with it at a sleepover and it just sucked down all the batteries in the house. on 16 May 2024 00:36 collapse

EB Toys??? We had KB Toys (or Kay Bee Toys), and we had Electronics Boutique. Which sold video games and small electronics.

But you had EB Toys??? on 16 May 2024 01:11 collapse

KB! I meant KB! lol

They’ve been gone hella long I just conflated the two. on 19 May 22:37 collapse

I loved KB Toys. Worked there for a short period. on 16 May 2024 00:17 next collapse

Ugh I wanted one of these so fucking badly when I was a kid. on 16 May 2024 00:33 next collapse

Hi, former kid here. No, you really don’t. Your eyesight and general health thank you. on 16 May 2024 01:41 collapse

They hurt your eyes and head.

That sentence is past and present tense on 16 May 2024 05:34 collapse

I think this is kind of a thing for a lot of stereoscopic 3d technology.

I could play the virtual boy, 3ds, watch 3d movies, etc. for hours without issue, and other people can’t take it at all.

I don’t know what factors play into that, maybe it’s genetic, maybe there’s some kind of skill/technique/habits about how you focus your eyes, or how often you blink, maybe it’s just luck of the draw that your pupil distance is just right or wrong. Maybe it comes down to something ridiculous like how many hours you spent trying to make sense of Magic Eye books when you were a kid. on 16 May 2024 00:20 next collapse

My parents rented me and my brothers one of these from blockbuster for a night. It was great and I’ll never forget it. on 16 May 2024 01:14 next collapse

I somehow ended up with 2 of these things in my collection. I have a consolizer mod kit for one, that I still need to install. Additionally, I managed to nab one of those everdrive-like carts that displays the label of the ROM in e-ink. on 16 May 2024 02:26 next collapse

I loved my virtual boy when I was a kid. It felt like the future or something. It didn’t have a lot of great games, but I did get most of the best ones when blockbuster video started clearing out their inventory and sold games for like $5 each. on 16 May 2024 03:17 next collapse

Pretty sure I still have a headache from using one in a Blockbuster in the 90s. on 16 May 2024 07:39 collapse

That was the just eye / face gunk from previous users. on 16 May 2024 14:19 collapse

Why would a dirty face cause a headache? on 16 May 2024 16:17 next collapse

Bacteria penetrating the blood brain barrier

[deleted] on 17 May 2024 00:02 collapse

. on 17 May 2024 05:03 collapse

Pathogens on 16 May 2024 03:24 next collapse

If you’ve got a modded 3ds, Red Viper works extremely well to emulate Virtual Boy games, if you’re curious about them. Arguably it’s a better experience than playing them on a Virtual Boy. on 16 May 2024 03:35 next collapse

But are there any games worth playing? on 16 May 2024 04:33 collapse

The Wario game is pretty good if you liked the original Game Boy Wario games.

Mario Clash is a fun take on the original Mario Bros game which didn’t need to be 3D, so I’m a little disappointed they haven’t revisited it.

Jack Bros. is notable for being Atlus’ first release in the West, and I remember having some fun with that one.

Mario Tennis was also pretty good, but there are probably better Mario Tennis games by now.

How many consoles can say that ~28% of their library is worth checking out? Haha on 16 May 2024 05:41 collapse


First person Punch-Out! with giant robots. on 16 May 2024 13:57 collapse

I was never sure if that game was good or not because I was so bad at it! Haha on 16 May 2024 16:56 collapse

It takes a bit of time for the controls to click, then all of a sudden you just catch a rhythm and it’s second nature.

Happened to me the first time I beat the self-destructive guy. Having to go for speed just made everything click and from that point it was all learning strategy, controlling what I wanted the game to do was no longer an issue. on 16 May 2024 15:08 collapse

I love my 2ds but virtualboy emulation makes me crave an upgrade on 16 May 2024 16:28 next collapse

you can now play nintendo virtual boy games on iphone using retroarch, from the app store today.

and it supports vision pro. is this a killer app? on 16 May 2024 16:45 next collapse

At the heart of Yokoi’s design philosophy lay a concept he called “lateral thinking with withered technology.” Yokoi’s design philosophy can be summarized as an approach that emphasized finding novel uses for existing, inexpensive technology. His philosophy arguably runs counter to conventional game industry wisdom where newer, flashier, cutting-edge technology is (assumed) better.

I think this is still Nintendo’s philosophy. I see a lot of people complaining that the Switch is “outdated hardware” compared to PlayStation and Xbox, not understanding that they’re not trying to make the same thing. on 17 May 2024 12:45 next collapse

framerates and graphics are all that matters. clearly on 23 May 14:32 collapse

Those people aren’t the switch’s target demographic at all. The target market love it, I guarantee. on 16 May 2024 23:04 next collapse

The only good game was Mario Tennis. on 17 May 2024 01:43 next collapse

Going to have to disagree, Teleroboxer and Red Alert were awesome. on 17 May 2024 11:30 next collapse

The Wario Land game was top tier. Probably the best game on the system. on 17 May 2024 12:44 collapse

Nah, Mario clash was fun on 17 May 2024 03:38 next collapse

That shit hurt my head the only few times I played it on 17 May 2024 11:58 collapse

I remember seeing these for $30 in Toys R Us clearance bins and I still kick my kid self for not picking one up.