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|Raising Atlantis. |
By the Avardancer March 22, 1998 -Really old...-
Prelude: About Ten Years ago or so; a man named Gumpei Yokoi was talking to Shigeru Miyamoto and Hiroshi Yamauchi about his idea for a new system. The idea was to make a system like the Nintendo Entertainment System; except make it portable. The decide to call it Gameboy. After much debate; they decided to make it Black & White. A color LCD or LED would be too expensive and Nintendo Ltd. was pressed for time. The other reason they didn't opt for color was the amount of battery life a color system has. The system was released and immediately people adopted Gameboy and it's games. The games were Super Mario Land, Tetris, and a few other titles. No complained about the lack of color.They were too busy playing the great games. The Sega Enterprises released "Game Gear". "Game Gear" was color. Then people started complaining that Gameboy wasn't in color.
Ten years later...
Game Gear died in 1996; Gameboy has gone through several transformations; it developed new color shells; it lost weight and became "Pocket" sized; it grew new color shells for it's "Pocket" incarnation; and then was completely perfected in an "Ice-Blue" color shelled version that included the battery light indicator that was missing from the first "Pocket" Gameboys. Gumpei Yokoi left Nintendo; developed his on own programming company and was hit by a car and killed in 1997. For the past eight months; in some rumour bins; a rumour about a 32-bit Color replacement for Gameboy have surfaced. This system was given a pretty cool "secret" name. That name was "Atlantis". "Atlantis" was supposed to be a 32 bit system with dimensions that are 5 inches by 6 inches. (Pay attention to the numbers.) Then just recently
Nintendo announced a new Color Gameboy that is capable of generating 56 colors on-screen out of a palette of 32,000. (Hmmmm. Sounds familiar.) Well, the system has a new kind of bright color screen that uses a new reflective technology in color screens and has a battery life of 10 hours with two AA batteries. What does this mean to Gameboy's future? In thier press release; Nintendo stated that the new color system is backwards-compatable with ALL 1,000 Gameboy titles. (1,000 games, now, is it? I've got some Reviews to do...) In addition to those 1,000 games; brand new games will be made specifically for the Color Gameboy. But will color kill Gameboy? Read on..
THE COLOR OF TROUBLE.
There are two things that kill a system quickly; if done wrong. Cds are the antagonist for home systems; they have claimed such victims as Sega's Saturn, Sega CD, CD-i, 3DO, etc. Sony has been smart enough to exploit the ONLY advantage that a cd has: "Space". (And even that space; isn't much; because you can not compress data or use certain Micro Code. Then CD Audio, even Midi, eats up CD space at an alarming rate.) The atagonist for portable systems has always been color. Color has claimed Turbo Graphix Express, Lynx, Game Gear, Nomad, etc. The main reason that color has killed these systems is battery life. Game Gear gave you 6 hours of play time at 6 AA batteries. Nomad gave you 10 hours at 6 AA batteries. I don't remember what Lynx and TG Express gave you. This problem has been solved with Color Gameboy. So, it looks like battery life will not kill Gameboy. Gameboy Color gives you 10 hours of play at the price of 2 AA batteries. But, there's one factor that could still kill Gameboy Color. That factor is quality.
COLOR ME LAME.
The reason that Game Gear died was that people didn't take the time to make quality sofware. They thought that they could toss around pretty colors and lame gameplay and people would buy it. Right now, Gameboy games have a real nasty habit of large graphics and HUGE games. Wario Land 2 is bigger than most SNES games. (52 Levels, about 8 endings.) Legend of Zelda: "Link's Awakening" has tons of replay value. (Can you beat it without certain items?) James Bond 007 should take the average gamer at least 15 hours to complete. Killer Instinct for Gameboy has every move except for everyone's second finishing moves. Acclaim managed to squash Mortal Kombat 1 and 2 on ONE game pak. Mole Mania should take you at least 24 hours to complete. The Final Fantasy series games should take you a good three or four days. (And all three of the "legends" ones have a ton of character classes. The third "Legends" one has more classes than Final Fantasy Tactics.) Wario Land has about 40 levels and a seven endings. Game & Watch Gallary has four Games with two different variations and three difficulty rateings for each game. For a total of 24 different challenges; plus a gallary of information on the old G&W games. Mario Picross has over 150 puzzles and an infinite amount of things to chip out. The only way that Color could hurt Gameboy is if people concentrate on Graphics and not Gameplay. That is the point of this editorial. Please be wary Nintendo! Give us QUALITY GAMES. We already have hundreds of quality old games; just give us some high quality new games! If Nintendo continues to give players huge games to take on the road; Gameboy Color could live to the ripe old age of 15. (In video game years; where anything over a three years old is practically dead, 15 years is a lot of time. 10 years is the record; and only the original NES was profitable for 10 straight years.) Heck, if Nintendo keeps cranking out games like Wario Land 2 and Legend of Zelda; then Gameboy Color could last another 10 years!