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 411mania » Games » Columns

411 Games Top 5 5.17.14: Top 5 Gameboy Games
Posted by Sean Garmer on 05.17.2014

Hello everyone, I hope it has been a good week for all the readers out there. Let's celebrate the Gameboy

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In our on and off series looking at the best from retro systems, it is time to honor the original Gameboy & Gameboy Color

Robert Cooper (Music Zone Reviewer, Writer of Metal Hammer Doom News Report, Regular Contributor to The Official 411 Games Zone Podcast "Cooperative Multiplayer," 411 Podcast Contributor )

5. Castlevania II: Belmont's Revenge: We knew Castlevania was going to show up on this list somehow! This games is pretty solid for the limitations of the Game Boy, the music was stellar, the game was still challenging, and it was a ton of fun to be had.

4. Super Mario Bros. Deluxe: This game was the first time I ever played the original Super Mario Bros. game, and damn, did it kick my ass. I did actually make it to world 8.3 before trading it to a kid on my bus for the next game that I have on the list.

3. Pokemon Pinball: This game was one of those games where I just had to keep playing "it again and again in hopes of filling up my Pokedex. Though I never actually did accomplish this feat, mainly because 1. I am ass at pinball, and 2. I hated the Red stage with a passion. Thus making it to where I could not fill up the Pokedex even if I were good at the game as a kid, I could never fill it up because just like with the main games, some Pokemon were exclusive to the certain stages.

2.Tetris: This game was a given, it was extremely addicting and slightly repetitive, but I don't think anyone cared. That damn music playing over and over as you try desperately to fit everything together and hope that the next few blocks will not screw you over. While it was another game I stunk at, because I suck at fitting things into neat boxes, it was still fun, and a game I should go back and play some time.

1. Pokemon Silver: What else would I put at number one? This game was my childhood, hell, this game is still part of my adulthood. If my cartridges for Gold and Silver still worked, I'd probably play through it every few years, it's just that damn good. It took what were already great games in the Red and Blue and fixed a lot of things that were wrong in it. The AI was better, the types got fixed up some, and certain moves were given different properties. But what was the best about it to me was that it was the first time we got new Pokemon (many of which were great) and it also let you revisit the Kanto region with your new Pokemon and let you relive the journey of the previous game. It was so great, so engrossing, and I love it so much. I really should pick up SoulSilver or HeartGold sometimes, now that I think of it. I wonder if they changed the battle with Red any? That was my favorite part of the game, taking your team that you worked so hard to build, and facing off against what is practically your character from the previous game. It felt like a right of passage and the final jewel in the crown of awesome that was this game.

John Cash (Reader Voice, Occasional Contributor to Four Player Co-op)

5. Pokemon Pinball: This game was way more fun than it should have been, and a lot more difficult than you'd think. I've always been a sucker for pinball games, and this one managed to combine the casual play of pinball with the manic repetitiveness of collection gameplay from Pokemon pretty much perfectly

4. Pokemon Yellow: Like most popular children's entertainment phenomena of the last 30 years, "Gen1'ers" will probably be upset that I not only have Yellow on this list over Blue/Red, but that it's also ranked lower than Gen 2. I apologize. I prefer Yellow because for some reason it was just really cool and special to have Pikachu following you outside of its pokeball. It's still the same solid Pokemon Gen I game besides that, so if you've played any Pokemon adventure then you know what Gen I is probably like (unless you are somehow reading this and haven't ever played a single Pokemon game, which would actually be kind of impressive at this point.)

3. Donkey Kong (1994): I'm not sure how many people ever played this, but I remember for the longest time not knowing that the original arcade version of Donkey Kong wasn't like this version; they made such a big deal back in the day about being able to carry the arcade with you that I just assumed that the Gameboy version was just the arcade game for my Gameboy, when in actuality it has nearly 35 times more content in the form of 96 original levels made for this game specifically. I would say that it's the best true sequel to Donkey Kong (in this case true meaning a continuance of the style of gameplay of the original, which DKC certainly doesn't do.)

2. Wario Land 3: Outside of Pokemon, when I think of the Gameboy, this is the game I think of. In my opinion its the best platformer for the system. All the different power-ups were so fun and unique, it's really great to see how they've kept Wario pretty unique amongst the rest of the Mario cast over the decades.

1. Pokemon Gold/Silver/Crystal: I'm not sure that I'd say it's my favorite generation, but it's pretty close. Some of my favorite pokemon debuted here; Heracross, Scizor, Delibird to name a few. To me, Gen 2 was all about showing the audience that there was so much more they can do with the series, from the day/night cycle to the radio to the trading with items evolution, introducing new types of pokemon. Red/Blue was insanely popular, but Gold/Silver sealed the deal on the legacy of Pokemon as a franchise.

Sean Garmer (Games Zone Reviewer, Games Top 5 Organizer, Interim Host of The Official 411 Games Zone Podcast "Cooperative Multiplayer," WWE Special Event Roundtable Organizer)

5. Final Fantasy Adventure: For those confused, this wasn't really a Final Fantasy game. Of course, I didn't know that until much later in life and played it because my brother told me I should pick up a Final Fantasy game for my Gameboy Pocket. I wound up loving this game a lot. Mainly because I could choose what stats I wanted for my character when he leveled up. It also had a hell of a lot of items to collect, great music from the awesome Nobou Uematsu, and a nice story to go along with it. Did I mention that it was the first Secret of Mana game? I think I forgot to say that.

4. Kirby's Dream Land 2: This is the game that made me fall in love with Kirby. I don't know what it was about the pink puffball, but I just liked jumping around, flying, and riding the big Hamster in this game. This was the first Gameboy game that allowed you to copy enemies powers, which made this game the version of Kirby to have. There was a lot of worlds to explore and I have to mention the Hamster again because he was awesome. Not that the Owl and Sunfish weren't cool too.

3. Tetris: I was never good at Tetris until I got much older, but without Tetris the Gameboy probably would have never survived. So, you have to give the game it's props just for being the killer app to have for the original Gameboy.

2. Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages & Seasons: I picked this up again at the recommendation of my brother. I had never played any of the Zelda games before this, so I had no idea what I was in for here. This was the only games I had for my Gameboy Color besides Pokemon Gold & Silver and Pokemon Pinball. It took me several attempts of putting this down and then deciding I was bored of Pokemon to pick this up, that I finally got into and didn't put it down until I was done with the game. Then I did the same thing with Oracle of Seasons. When you look at these compared to the other more legendary Zelda games, they are a bit underrated. But if you wanted a Zelda experience on a Gameboy, these were the games to have, that is until the GBA came out.

1. Pokemon Gold, Silver, & Crystal: Pokemon Red & Blue hold a special place in my heart because they were the reason I got into portable gaming. My grandparents bought me a Gameboy Pocket and then went to like three different stores to get the last Red & Blue games they had (I had no idea you didn't have to have both games.) I played the crap out of those games and they rightfully should be No. 1 honestly. However, Gold & Silver were much better games, with more Pokemon, and throw-in that you could basically go back and play Red & Blue if you wanted once you finished the Johto region of Gold & Silver. Since GBC games were included in this Top 5, I think it would be wrong of me to put Red & Blue No. 1 when I know in my heart Gold & Silver delivered on everything Red & Blue gave us and doubled it.

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Fun Links To Checkout

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If you don't listen to the Official 411 Games Podcast "Cooperative Multiplayer" you should! Robert Cooper, Daniel Anderson, and I, discuss the games we've played this week, the gaming news of the week, and just have a lot of fun too. Here is this week's episode…

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