The Game Boy Advance – Review – Game Sack

(Game Sack Theme) – Hello and welcome to Game Sack. Talking about the Game Boy
Advanced this time around. And this is actually the
first portable system I ever bought. That’s right, I never had a
Game Boy, Game Gear, Nomad, nothing like that. This was the first
must-have portable system, at least for me anyway. So let’s take a quick
look at the system itself. The Game Boy Advance! The Nintendo Game Boy
Advance was released in Japan in March of 2001, and Europe and North America
in June of that same year. The original unit features
a horizontal layout with a non-backlit screen in the middle powered by two AA batteries
which last around 15 hours. Revisions were made which are rechargeable and include a backlight. The Game Boy Advance SP
being the most popular model. The games come on small cartridges
that range anywhere from four to 32 megabytes. Officially part of the Game Boy line, it’s backwards compatible
with both Game Boy and Game Boy Color cartridges. The Game Boy Advance is powered
by a 32-bit ARM processor running at 16.8 megahertz. Screen resolution is 240 by 160 pixels with up to 32,768 simultaneous colors, four independent background layers, and 128 sprites on
screen of varying sizes. The sound is a DAC
powered by the CPU itself and it’s the weakest point of the system, with many games using a
sampling rate of 11 kilohertz or even lower. Giving it a very fuzzy
or scratchy quality. Overall, the Game Boy
Advance was a huge success selling over 81 million units worldwide with over 1500 released games. (exciting F-Zero GX music) All right, so it has
some interesting specs but of course, what people
always care about the most, are the games. And the Game Boy Advance will not let you down on that front. So let’s take a look at some
games that I find interesting for one reason or another. (cartridge clicks) Let’s start of with Mario
Kart: Super Circuit. This was the fourth best selling title on the Game Boy Advance, right
behind the Pokemon stuff. And no, sorry, I won’t be
covering any of the Pokemon games in this episode because I’m
just not really into Pokemon. Suffice it to say, people
really love their Mario Kart. I can see why! It’s a very simple concept. Try to win the race while using items to cheat your way ahead. But it’s not really cheating
since every other participant in the race can use the
same items that you can. This version was developed
by Intelligent Systems who were responsible for
the Fire Emblem series and even the original Duck Hunt. You can certainly feel the Duck Hunt roots while playing this one. Actually that’s stupid, no you can’t. It mainly looks and plays like
the Super Nintendo original, only with much better graphics. You’ve still got the coins on the floor, the hopping power slide and completely flat
tracks without any hills. But there’s more detail
on these flat tracks and now the sprites are also
scaled properly as well. Even the distance scrolling backgrounds have a lot more going on. The music is good and well,
it’s what you’d expect from a Mario Kart game. (happy music) There’s also a link-up feature for you and up to three of your friends to battle which sadly I can’t show you
because I have no friends. Overall it’s a good entry into the series and it proved that Mario
Kart could even succeed on a portable system. (electronic game pinging) – [Mario] Here we go! – [Joe] This is Ninja Five-O from Konami and developed by Hudson. I’ve rarely heard anyone mention this one. They should though because
it’s pretty darn good. In fact, it’s on the
cusp of being amazing. You’re a crime fighting ninja
cop out to take down thugs and rescue hostages. This game reminds me of a mix between Elevator Action Returns,
Shinobi and Rolling Thunder and that’s all definitely a good thing. As you make your way through each area, you can toss weapons to defeat enemies. You can even slash them with your sword. Your sword is also used to open red crates which can contain power-ups or keys to open the same colored doors. Enemies also sometimes drop power-ups and life-ups as well. Your shots get cooler and cooler
the more power-ups you get but if you get too many times, your power level will decrease. If you press jump again while in midair, you’ll extend a grappling hook which you can use to get to higher ledges. You also have full screen
ninja magic that you can use if your green bar is full. You need to be careful
not to hit hostages. Hit even one accidentally and you’ll have to start
the entire stage over. And these stages can be pretty big. There are three stages
to complete in each area and the fourth one is a boss encounter. It’ll only take you a few seconds to get used to the controls and they work extremely
well for the most part. The exception is the grappling hook. Most of the time it’s perfectly fine but there are points where
you need to keep swinging your way higher and higher and it’s just not done very well at all. My enjoyment of the game is brought down just a teeny little bit because of this. Instead, you can try to go
up the sides of the walls in some areas but be careful. And while I like the music, the problem is that each
area has the same music so it gets old quickly. And it’s too bad because
this game is so close to being truly amazing and they just fell a bit short. It’s still definitely worth having, though probably not worth what they’re asking for it these days. It’s fairly well sought after since it originally
didn’t sell well at all. (cool but repetitive music) There are three Sonic
Advance games on the system, each released a year apart. I though I’d mention these briefly but there’s really not a whole lot, for me personally, to say about them. I love Sega, I really do. But I simply don’t care for Sonic. I just don’t see the appeal anymore. But hey, at least these games were built from the ground up for this system, so that’s a plus. I actually bought the first
one when it was released, for some reason. Probably the same reason
I keep buying Mario games but never finish them. I get caught up in the hype
during the release and give in. Anyway, three Sonic games are
here for you if you like them. And more power to you if you do. Just because I don’t like them, doesn’t mean I’ll think
less of you, if you do. Sorry if I make any of you sad, but hey, we all have our own likes and dislikes. (Sonic boings) (game pinging) And speaking of Mario games, how about Mario and Luigi Superstar Saga? This is the first game in the rather large Mario & Luigi series and it’s the only one on the Game Boy Advance. This isn’t your typical Mario game. Actually, it’s like a
slightly more complicated Super Mario RPG. Yes, this is an RPG and once again you’ve team up with Bowser. However, as you’d guess from the title you only play as Mario and Luigi, both at the same time. Someone has stolen Princess Peach’s voice! And for some reason, they left her alive. Since she still lives, this
prompts Mario, Luigi and Bowser to go on a quest to get her voice back. The battles are kind of
similar to Super Mario RPG with the enemy hopping and pressing the button at the right time for a more powerful attack, and whatnot. Though to me, this feels like
Nintendo had just realized that they have not just one,
but two different buttons. Don’t want them going to waste, gotta use them both all the time! One button controls Mario and
the other one controls Luigi. It’s not necessarily a
bad thing, it just feels like they’re pushing this
concept a little hard. As you walk around you
can do special jumps. For example, if Mario is
leading, Luigi can jump on him and you both will jump higher as a result. If Luigi is leading, Mario can jump on him and you’ll do a twirly thing to float across the air for a bit. Sometimes you’ll have
to switch back and forth again and again a lot, just to get to a box that
has a coin or a mushroom. The battles also have some combo attacks that I just couldn’t pull off well at all. So I stopped trying. It doesn’t matter much though, because the enemy attacks
are usually easy to dodge. It just takes a lot longer
to finish the battle with single attacks. Overall I like the game. The characters are all really fun, the pacing is perfect, the battles are mostly fun and the music sounds good. Definitely give this one a try. (adventurous music) So obviously there’s a lot of
variety in the game library. But some of my favorite games have always been action and adventure. Turns out the Game Boy Advance doesn’t let down in those genres either. Treasure gave us some
games on the platform, including Advance Guardian Heroes. They took their rule
about not making sequels and just threw it out the window! I’m very surprised that treasure did this since they broke away from Konami because they got sick of
making sequels and the such. Sega owns the license to Guardian Heroes and they weren’t interested in a sequel so Treasure actually had
to license it from Saga and have Ubisoft publish it. Wow, they really changed
their minds about sequels. Anyway, this is a beat ’em up similar to the original Saturn game. It’s pretty good but it’s not great. The action is fun and so it
using all of your powers. My main issue is that
there’s a lot of slow down, especially in stage two. And it feels like stage two goes on about three or four
times longer than it should. The entire thing is played like this on this little platform. Not very exciting. It also feels like it takes
too long to get back up after being knocked down. Aside from these two gripes,
the game is well made and definitely enjoyable. Once again, you can power-up
your abilities between stages. You can also invest crystals into some slow moving
research in the laboratory. Most of the stages seem
to have their own gimmick. Like this one which auto scrolls with you standing on a glowing circle. The music is pretty good with lots of tunes from the
Saturn game making a return. It’s not horribly expensive these days and you can certainly do
worse with your money. (energetic music) (gun zapping) In 2005, Treasure blessed us
with Gunstar Super Heroes. Yeah, not only did Treasure
start making sequels but now even remakes. Still, this is an awesome game though. It really shows off the
scaling and rotation abilities of the Game Boy Advance
more than most other games. A lot of the stages from the
Genesis original are here. In fact, I think that the
Genesis version of this stage looks a lot better. But at least I still get
to enjoy these tiny guys freaking out as I destroy
their homes for no good reason. Yeah, look at you, you’re now homeless. And yes, of course it
still has a dice maze. It’s not a straight up remake, there are lots of new
stages and additions. And this game loves to
pay tribute to Saga. Like this stage, which is basically Flicky only it’s rotating around as you play. In fact, a lot of stages
love to rotate in this game. Or how about this stage which is a nod to the arcade version of Thunder Blade? There’s even more in here but I’ll let you discover
that for yourself. The music is also great. Though I do think the Genesis
version sounds better. Check this out if you
want some fast paced, explosive action on your Game Boy Advance. (adventurous music) (guns blasting) Treasure and Sega also brought us Astro Boy the Omega Factor. I’m not sure who asked for this. I’ve never been a fan of Astro Boy and I doubt he’s popular
enough to sell a game, at least in North America. And that might be why people
rarely mention this one. But what is Treasure
gonna do with the license? Make a bad game? Of course not! This is an action platformer where you play as a nearly naked robot boy that has a ton of firepower. You can punch, kick,
shoot your finger laser, blast through the air, do a super laser and you even have your
trusty butt bullets. Usually, you need to defeat
a certain number of enemies before the screen will let you advance. After you meet certain characters, you can power yourself up, one point at a time, kind of similar to
Advance Guardian Heroes. The control is very good and you’ll get the hang of
Astro Boy’s moves in no time. There are even a lot of
cutscenes for you to skip. The visuals are once again, done very well with lots of parallax,
scaling and rotation. Though not as much as
Gunstar Super Heroes. However, this one loves blocky sprites. Why draw the enemies bigger when you can just scale up the small ones to save memory and time? Be sure to check this one
out if you want to play as a proto-Megaman before Megaman existed which plays nothing like Megaman. No seriously, this one’s good. (game zapping) (fists thumping) Another series of games I
need to briefly mention, are the Castlevanias. I talk about these in great detail on my Metroidvania episode,
so I’ll keep it short here. But please, definitely
check that episode out. It started with Circle of the Moon which was a launch game in North America. It’s kinda stiff but it’s
super fun with great music. Harmony of Dissonance was next. The music wasn’t so hot in
this one but the gameplay and graphics took a
fairly big leap forward. Well, except for those dumb
outlines around the characters. And they saved the best for
last with Aria of Sorrow. This one is just outstanding and every Game Boy Advance owner should try to play through
this one if they can. These are all in the
Metroidvania style of course. These games alone made
owning a Game Boy Advance totally worth it for me. (slow dramatic music) Metroid 4 showed up on
the Game Boy Advance as Metroid Fusion. Samus has been infected
with something called X and cells from a Metroid saved her and now she’s all messed
up and yadda, yadda, yadda. All you need to know is,
is that it’s Metroid. I would say that this is a
Metroidvania but it’s not. It’s just Metroid, no ‘vania here. Except for that part where
you have to kill Dracula. It’s a really fun game
full of exploration. I will say that I did
have a bit of trouble trying to get Samus to jump
off of the hanging ledges. But only in a few particular spots. Still the stages are mostly
well designed beyond that. And of course, you still need to rediscover all of your powers. At least this game gives you a reason as to why you no longer have them. But what good would a Metroid
game be if you started fully powered up anyway? Expanding your abilities
is half the fun, at least. I’m not a huge fan of
collecting the glitchy globs that float around but that’s only a very minor complaint. The graphics are pretty good
but sparse in a lot of areas. There doesn’t seem to
be as much variety here as there was in Super Metroid. And I’m not fond of the blue
and yellow look of Samus. Sam-us, Same-us? Whatever. But what’s that! (Joe gasps) I think there’s something
going on here, guys! Got a little mystery on our hands. The music is ambient but honestly, it doesn’t have the chops
to pull off the mood as well as Super Metroid did. Still, don’t let that deter you. This is an awesome game. (laser blasts) Two years later came Metroid Zero Mission which is an original from the NES. I really really love this game. I doesn’t bog you down
with much text at all. In fact, there’s barely
any narrative to the game and it doesn’t suffer as a result. I’ve always had a fascination
with the original Metroid but playing it was
problematic without a map. And you also had to write down passwords. Now it’s been given a very
Super Metroid-like makeover with all of the things we’ve
come to expect from that game. As a result, this game can finally shine
the way it was meant to. Lots of stuff is familiar here and of course they took some liberties. Which is totally fine by me. They added save rooms, map
rooms and new areas and more. And now, some Chozos will show
you where you need to go next via the map screen. The graphics are all extremely
well done and I love them. I really can’t find
anything to gripe about here and I love to gripe. The music is also exceptional. (music that happens to be exceptional) Most of that is based on NES original which itself was amazing
so no surprise here. Yes, it’s still a little grainy
sounding but it’s not bad. It really does a fantastic
job setting the ambient mood. Or the ambience if you’re fancy. The Game Boy Advance is
definitely a phenomenal platform for Metroid style
adventures with these two, plus the three Castlevania games. (gun blasting) The Super Nintendo was
well known for its RPGs, many of which were ported
over to this system. But how about the original
RPGs or even strategy RPGs? Are they worth your time or mine? But first, there’s a game I had to
buy right when it came out because I was curious if it
could live up to its namesake. (cartridge clicks) I’m a huge fan of Super Monkey Ball so I just had to purchase
Super Monkey Ball Jr. Keep in mind that I am
not a very smart man. Obviously it’s scaled way
down from the GameCube game and I’m surprised that
they even attempted it. It almost feels like a broken 32X game. I kid, it’s not that bad. But it is extremely slow and of course the frame rate
isn’t that great either. Also you don’t have the
benefit of analog controls and it feels like there’s a
touch of control lag as well. The courses have been designed
for this in mind, somewhat. But it can still be kinda frustrating. There are four minigames here. All of them multiplayer. Some of them requiring multiple systems being linked together. Monkey Fight is really fun but man, that sound is pretty bad. (balls thumping) I really don’t know what I
was expecting from this game but like I said, I had to try it and now
I am sharing my pain. (thumping music) Want an RPG? Well how about Golden Sun from Camelot? These are the same developers
behind Shining Force and Shining Holy Ark
and all of those games. If you’ve played any of those, you’ll notice the
similarity in styles here. The characters all have weird tics. Look at that, they
really do that a lot too. I’m not sure why they do
that but I’m not a fan of it because it does slow down the pacing since it happens so often. But whatever. This game revolves around a
psychic power called Psynergy. Basically this is just
super fancy telekinesis but it can be used for a lot
more than just moving stuff. It can do stuff like
revitalize your health and of course it can be used in battle. Speaking of battles, the ones here are random and
they happen all the time. As far as the story goes, it’s typical and nothing really out of
the ordinary for an RPG. I did find it hard to
get used to moving stuff with my Psynergy at first, though. Still, the game is put together very well. And aside from the
extremely verbose characters and their weird tics, it’s quite enjoyable. The graphics are nicely done and I really like the colors and art. The music is immediately
recognizable to me as being from Motoi Sakuraba who always does the music for Camelot. And of course, it’s very good. (energetic music) Golden Sun 2 The Lost Age
is also on this system. This one is set up just
like the first game and uses a lot of the same characters. It seems to have slightly better pacing. You get into the meat of the game sooner, or at least it felt like that to me. The battles are the same, and they seem to have been
tightened up slightly. If you like wordy RPGs
then you’ll really enjoy both of these games. (energetic music) The Legend of Zelda The Minish Cap is the only original
Zelda game for the system. At least for a single player, therefore the only one
I can really show you. This one was made by Capcom
oddly but they did a great job. It has all of your
familiar Zelda trappings such as weapons and items that you can assign to different buttons, dungeons you need to find keys to solve, as well as light puzzles. I appreciate that the game
doesn’t waste a lot of time with preamble, you’re
into it fairly quickly. Zelda’s been kidnapped and a new evil sorcerer
threatens the land. But he broke the only sword
that the humans can use to defend themselves from said evil. So your job is to speak to the Minish who can repair the sword. These are small creatures who only speak to young
people like yourself. Along the way, you get a green dude who affixes himself to your head. He helps you out throughout your adventure with advice and whatnot. He also shows you how to shrink down to the size of the Minish . When you’re small you need to
be extremely careful of water. You can grow and shrink
anytime you see a portal and there are plenty of them around. Anyway, that’s the game’s main gimmick and thankfully it’s not horribly annoying. The visuals are very well done, especially when you’re
playing as small Link. Capcom brought their own style
to the game and I like it. I mean, don’t get me wrong,
it still looks very Zelda-ish. The sound is also very good with most of the familiar tunes
you’re used to in the series and some nice original ones. Pretty much a must have for the system unless you hate Zelda
for some weird reason. (dramatic music) (Link grunting) How about a strategy RPG? Okay so Advance Wars doesn’t
really have much in the way of RPG but it’s a great tactical game. It’s also pretty easy to learn if you played any other
similar game before. However, in this one, you’ll
need to resupply your units if you can keep your supply trucks alive. You can also capture enemy
buildings, that’ll show ’em. Each side gets one turn per day. Yeah, each turn takes an entire day. There are also options
you can set like fog, so you can’t see all of the
enemy units at a given time and they can’t see all of yours. I don’t like this option at all, at least when playing by myself but if you’re playing with another human? It might add some surprise to the mix. The game is very snappy and the battle animations look great. However, I did find this
one pretty difficult for such a game. It’s probably best played
multiplayer, I think. (guns blasting) That of course was followed
up by Advance Wars 2. Naturally it’s more of the same but with some welcome improvements. For one, your maps are usually bigger. Secondly, most importantly, you need to purchase and deploy your own battle force from
your base during the battle. And you can buy anything you
want, as much as you want, just as long as you can
keep the cash flowing. I like that they didn’t
fix what wasn’t broken and you can’t go wrong here. Fire Emblem was made by the same developer and it’s definitely a real strategy RPG. This is actually the
seventh game in the series but the first to be
released in North America. This one plays more like
the Shining Force games and that’s a very good thing. You have the same type of units. Those who can attack the
nearest base like swordsmen, archers who attack a space further away and even flying units. In this game, you can visit
homes that are on the map and potentially gain information,
money or even new members that fight with you. Like Shining Force, you’ll gain some
experience for each battle, no matter the outcome. Unlike Advance Wars, you don’t have to manually end your turn after you’re done moving
all of your people around and have told them to wait or attack. However, if one of your
characters dies in battle they stay dead forever. Just like real life. But if you don’t like
it, just reload your save and try that battle again. Also just like real life. All in all, this is a great strategy game. (game pings) Two years later Fire Emblem
The Sacred Stones was released. This was mostly more of the
same and it’s every bit as good, maybe even a little better. Maybe that’s because
you can turn off hints right from the beginning. This allows you to get to the nitty-gritty that much quicker. You can’t go wrong with
either of these games unless you absolutely hate strategy RPGs. Still, everyone should try it
just to see if they like it. (adventurous music) Okay, for this last segment, I’m just gonna throw some games in there that I thought were interesting. Couple of them are decently popular, the others, definitely some hidden gems. ♪ I’m too hidden for these gems ♪ ♪ Too hidden for these gems ♪ ♪ Many hidden gems ♪ (Joe sighs) Let’s just get on with it. (cartridge clicks) Next up is WarioWare
Incorporated, or WarioWare Inc. This game is basically just a
set of super short minigames. I loved the idea at the time. I like things that are absurd and this game is definitely that. Basically you’re given a
single word instruction like grab or defend. Then you literally only have a few seconds to figure out what you’re doing, how to do it and then complete the task. For example, you need to
catch this rod when it drops by pressing the button. Or move back and forth on a
unicycle to balance your load. You’ll fail often because you just won’t
have time to figure it out. Once you fail four times it’s game over. If you win, it keeps going and going but of course it gets harder and faster. Yeah, but believe me you’ll
have to fail some of these a few times before you
can figure them out. Only then will you know what to expect and how to beat it. Each character generally
has their own minigames that they throw at you but you’ll often see ones repeated. The presentation of the game is amazing with extremely well done
and often silly graphics. It also has some of the best use of the Game Boy Advance sound hardware. (sweet game sound) While this game is a blast, the one thing it doesn’t
have is staying power. You’ll get tired of it after a day or two. But then you can ignore it
for years and years like I did and then try it again and have more fun. This was followed up by WarioWare Twisted! Which used a gyroscopic
sensor in the cartridge for motion control. Yeah, no thanks. But this first entry here,
it still a hoot and a holler. For a couple of days at least. Speaking of Wario, there’s Wario Land 4. Does anyone say Wor-io instead of War-io? This one is more of a
traditional 2D platformer. A pyramid has been discovered somewhere so Wario drives down to find all of the riches hidden inside. (laughs) Wario… so greedy. You need to find four pieces
of a gem in each stage. Once you find all the gems in that world, you unlock the door to the boss fight. There are a lot of
things that Wario can do that Mario can’t and it can be kind of tough to get used to a few of the moves. You have to remember to
engage the smash power before you jump and not vice-versa
like I keep trying to do. Decades of other platforming games taught me to jump before I attack so it was just a little weird. It’s not a knock against it though. Sometimes you have to pick something up and carry it somewhere. Or even throw something. There are lots of things
that can happen to you like getting smashed flat, getting blown up into a balloon or even turned into a nasty zombie. Ew, that’s gross! This isn’t your typical
Mario clone, that’s for sure. But once you get used to everything it’s pretty fun. There are also some minigames you can play since I guess Wario is
all about the minigames. Wait, could this baseball
game be in TATE mode? TAAAAAAAAATE!!!!!!!
OH MY GOD! TATE mode is so amazing! The graphics are extremely colorful and detailed and they
don’t disappoint at all. There’s lots of scaling and rotation effects everywhere as well. The music is what you’d
expect which is kind of bouncy maybe slightly evil. Check this one out, you might like it. (creepy game music) Metal Slug even got a
little love in the form of Metal Slug Advance. Though I’ve gotta say this is probably my least
favorite Metal Slug game but it’s still not bad. You choose between two
brand new characters as you start your mission. Then you choose your mission on the world map as they open up. From there, it’s mostly
standard Metal Slug action except that most of the animation has been drastically cut back. There’s also no blood
here, not even gray sweat. The game is still brutal though and it only gives you one life. The good news is that
there are checkpoints and you do have unlimited continues. After you get back to your
camp you can save your game so you don’t have to go back through the
entire game at once. During gameplay, whenever
you collect a random item it’ll stop everything just so it can tell you you got a card. Like, why do I care? Back in camp you can view
the cards that you got but again I see no reason
to care about this. Still, other than the lacking animation, the graphics are done very well. And so is the sound. It sounds just like a
Neo-Geo Metal Slug game right down to how very mono it is. So definitely not horrible but there are many better
Metal Slug games out there that you could play instead. (tense music… in mono) (guns shooting) Car Battler Joe’s an interesting
little car RPG of sorts from Ancient, the people
behind Streets of Rage 2. It’s like they took the RPG
mode from Final Lap Twin on the TurboGrafx-16, took out the random
battles and added guns. You star as Joe who
wants to be a car battler and of course soon sets on his way. It begins in a overhead
RPG world with shops and all of that familiar stuff. Soon, you begin doing courier jobs to earn experience and money. You have a car that
gets equipped with a gun to help battle off bandits and whatnot. The car scenes take place
on Mode 7 style tracks. You’re shown which way to
go via the blue route arrow that moves around the screen but it can be kinda crazy at times. Usually it won’t let you down though. Early on you’re just delivering goods that are essential for survival
like medicine or burgers. You can buy and equip
better parts of your car with the money that you earn. Eventually, you’ll be tasked
with specific missions that move the game’s plot along like trying to recover some
stolen goods for a family. I’ve gotta admit, the game
can be kind of addictive. I kept wanting to get to the next area despite the overall lack of variety. I mean, I didn’t care, I just
wanted to see what was next. It’s easy and fun to play and they certainly didn’t
overdo the RPG elements. The music by Yuzo Koshiro
gives the game a unique feel but it’s not necessarily something you’d want to
listen to outside of the game. Overall, it’s a good time if you want a little racing adventure on your Game Boy Advance. (car engine grinding) (guns firing) Iridion 2 is a really nice
vertical shooter for the system. Well okay, it’s not really vertical, it’s one of those where it’s angled a bit but it plays just like a vertical shooter. Basically you fly a ship
around and shoot things. Before each stage you can choose what type of
weapon you’d like to bring, as well as if you’d like it
to power-up automatically. I always choose auto and I’ve
never had an issue with it or felt like it needed
to be anything more. Over on the right side of the screen, you have all of your weapons and can eventually collect some more. There’s a tutorial I went through once that explained all of this
but I found it boring. I didn’t go through the tutorial this time and I had no issues whatsoever. Not that I know of anyway. If you hold down the fire button
you have a rapid fire shot. If you double tap the
fire button and hold, you can charge up a powerful shot. This works fine but I just wish it could’ve been assigned
to the other button since that one doesn’t
seem to do anything. At least in auto mode it doesn’t. A lot of the stage designs remind me of Viewpoint for the Neo-Geo. The game is pretty easy and you should be able to complete the first five or six
stages without dying once. And there are a total of 15 stages. Just keep collecting the power-ups and they’ll help restore your life meter once you’re fully
powered-up on that weapon. Because of this, your weapon level resets
to its weakest point at the beginning of each stage. Still it’s really fun
and I never get bored. Though I think mainly that’s because of the outstanding music from Manfred Linzner who was also one of the programmers. It’s very Euro and it’s in
the style of Chris Huelsbeck. (sweet Euro-style music) Each and every stage without exception has great music that’s
not only well composed but really pushes the sound
quality limits of the system. My only gripe is that it isn’t in stereo. The graphics are also amazing even though they’re mostly pre-rendered. Some stages definitely don’t
look as nice as the others but it’s still really cool to
see this on a portable system. If you like shooters, check this one out. (gun blasts) Well there’s the Game Boy Advance. I know I didn’t cover every single game. I left out maybe three or four. But it should give you a taste of what the Game Boy Advance is all about. And I love this system, it
has so much going for it. Anyway, what do you think
of the Game Boy Advance? Let me know, in the meantime, thank you for watching Game Sack. Game Sack Credits Theme (ominous noise) Introducing the new Game
Boy Advance from Nintendo! (rock music) The hot new portable
system that’s so advanced you’ll have to evolve to play it. ADVANCE! The Nintendo Game Boy Advance, now you’re playing with power. Advance power! Electric sparking causing
great physical harm.


  1. I thought the GBA was great when it came out, and the SP only made it better if you didn't have the special headphones that were made for it. I may not have that many games, but I made sure to pick out some gems, or at least some oddballs.

  2. The sound is the single reason I avoid playing Game boy Advance games. Can't stand how bad games sound on the platform.

  3. This was my first handheld as well. Was one of my entertainment options for 2 years of my conscription. Only wished they had released the SP sooner.

  4. Gotta justify that GBA Consolizer. Awesome video and would love me a advance wars sequel on the switch. Such a great game.

  5. I'm sorry got to disagree with you this one time I'm a super Sega fan but Gunstar super Heroes for Game Boy Advance is better than the Genesis version graphics and sound and effects

  6. Astro Boy is amazing. You to play through twice to see all the hidden characters and get the full story. Gets bloody hard at the end

  7. If you wanted to transition to a strategy rpg, you've got Final Fantasy Tactics Advance right there! There's nothing RPG about Advance Wars, haha

  8. What a great handheld. I actually even still own my little XGLink flash-cart thingy. Totally worth the money back then. 8]
    Too bad the software doesn't work under anything more recent than WindowsXP…

  9. I love the Game Boy Advance growing up with some amazing games and I like the systems are smaller plus it can fit on your pocket, Great video.

  10. Great video, having a lot of fun with the castlevanias, alien hominid and Lilo and stitch (plays a lot like metal slug)

  11. I love gunstar heroes, three word… Green, Plus, Blue. if you have played the game you know what it means. 🙂

    p.s. in advance wars 1-2 the ai knows where you are regardless of the fog of war so turn it off unless your playing vs a human.

  12. People have wanted me dead for saying Metroid Fusion is better than Super Metroid. Sorry, it's an improvement (except the sound). Another game I'd say is worth checking out is Wade Hixton's Counter Punch. It plays just like Punch-Out with some awesome animations and graphics. I have a few gripes with it, but overall, it's the DEFINITIVE Punch-Out game that we should've had the GBA. Awesome episode , Joe. There are a few games on here that I'll definitely be checking out now.

  13. Thanks Joe your previous episode on castlevania made me try aria of sorrow and I have a pure blast playing it and this gba one give me plenty of other ideas for new game to try. I would like to install a backlight screen on my gba. Does anyone around know I good place in the LA/San Diego aera ?

  14. Whilst it wasn't my first handheld, the GBA was the first one I got with my own money. Had many fun hours with Advance wars and THPS2 and being able to play the old gameboy games was a great extra at the time.

  15. While i dont much play Handhelds all that often (i simply prefer the big screen……..and yeah you can hook up almost any handheld onto the big screen but still), the GBA was really an awesome system……………not my favorite tho, i think my favorite is a hard tie between the PSP and PSV.

  16. Mariokart was my favourite gba game and I was featured in Nintendo uk magazine as one of the uks best super circuit players. Can’t play it for shit these days though but I’ve still got the magazine and the memories 😀

  17. the gba sp is one of the best systems
    till today….
    tons of games + gameboy/color
    plus an amazing battery life.

    my faves:
    donkey kong country 2
    wario land 4
    castlevania (nes classics)
    duke nukem

  18. There were so many great games on the GBA! I fell in love with Harvest Moon and Mario Golf, spent a lot of hours into those games. Of course Pokemon was the main reason for owning one.

    But Advance Wars, Golden Sun, Wario Ware, FF Tactics Advance took up a lot of my time.

  19. Bruce Lee: Return of the Legend, finally a good bruce lee game, where the beat'em up is on point, with nice animation & unlockables (Game of Death suit) very underrated !

  20. My first handheld! It was the first thing I bought with my employee discount when I started at Target WAY back in the day.

    Metroid Fusion is definitely my favourite, all time classic!

  21. GBA games could be truly timeless if the system used a more conventional 256×224 resolution rather than the ULTRA low 240×160. The low vertical resolution really kneecapped it.

  22. A few more good games for the system are some English translations of Japanese games that never came over to the West
    Magical vacation
    Mother 3
    Megaman Battle Network 4.5
    Oriental blue
    Super Robot Taisen J
    World reborn is a prototype that was unreleased but now thanks to someone its availability
    My favorite on the system that's hard to choose
    But I'd have to say Golden Sun 1 and 2
    You get a different special ending if you collect everything in both games plus when you transfer your save data you get to meet up with the characters from the first game

  23. Great episode, but… If you don't mind me asking, why would you cover Sonic, which you don't care for, and not Pokemon, which you don't care for?

  24. Ninja Cop was the best!! I could never ever find an actual legit version of it though. Thank you for being the only other person to finally mention it!

  25. The outline in Castlevania Harmony of Dissonance, as well as the bright colors for Soma in Aria of Sorrow and samus in Metroid Fusion were a trick to make the character more visible on the non-backlit GBA screen.

  26. Wario ware twisted is a really amazing game, if you own the cartridge. Definitelly play it!! Btw, the control hack sucks, skip that.

  27. Really glad to finally meet someone that loved consoles and handhelds of ye old days that was/is not into hte pokemon stuff like me! I felt like im the only one on earth that couldnt get into the subject matter/games …

  28. Huh, I totally though that ending skit was gonna be able how you can barely see the original GBA's screen unless you had tons of light or something.

  29. I recommend checking gba games composed by Ian Stocker if you want to hear good quality gba audio. 007: Everything or Nothing and robots are the ones that come to my mind first. Don't let the movie licenses fool you, those games sound great.

  30. Would love to see a follow up episode that was just about GB/GBC/GBA games with added hardware like Boktai, Perfect Dark and The Singer Sewing Machine cart 🙂

  31. Man I love that transition from one game to the other. It looks cool as heck. Another great video. Thanks for all the content.

  32. Another amazing video. Thank you! I love the GBA. I have a modded gen 1 GBA with a backlit screen. The GBA SP feels too narrow for my hands. I can't wait for the Analogue Pocket though. That thing looks outstanding and with the dock I will finally be able to play these games on the TV. I don't have a GB Player. So many games to love on the system. Some favorites are the Metroid games, Ninja Five O, Mario Kart, the Golden Sun and the Zelda games. Again, keep up the great work. Much appreciated!

  33. The two Fire Pro Wrestling games for the GBA were not only outstanding, these also were the few games of the series (apart from Fire Pro Wrestling Returns for PS2 and the most recent one for PS4 and PC) that were released in the west. The GBA Fire Pro games were only held back by the lack of buttons on the GBA, which resulted in shorter move lists per wrester and as well the many changes they had to make for western releases, ie. the many costume changes for the already fictionalised wrestlers (that also could renamed to their real-life counterparts) or the change of the octagon ring, because WWE and UFC where whining, but also the removal of the Manage the Ring mode in favour of more edit wrestler slots. But especially the first Fire Pro Wrestling game for GBA was surprisingly deep even compared to the games on the "big" consoles up to this day, since you actually had to work your matches to progress in the game. And not only did you have to work you matches, you had to adept to the individual styles of the included federations or the preference of the audience to get high enough ratings to progress. And you didn't even have to win most matches, most of the time only the ratings counted. Which meant for several of the audiences (mostly of the japanese leagues) that preferred a more balanced match you intentionally had to take quite a beating, so the match wasn't too one-sided. Only the Shoot Fighting/MMA path (yes, the game also featured this) consisted of straight forward beating the opponent as quickly a possible. Or the "Showman style" (as it was called in-game) of the western leagues where you had to hit all your trademark moves and the finisher (and signal them with a taunt before execution) to gain high ratings. Too bad that this way of unlocking stuff was available for the first GBA Fire Pro Game only.

  34. Joe: "I don't really care for Pokemon"
    Me: "Okay that's fine everyone is entitled to their opinion.
    Joe: "I don't like Sonic anymore"

  35. Would you ever consider doing a game boy advance ultimate system type video? Like if someone were to just start getting into it, which system is the best way to play the games?

  36. Great episode! Immediately had to purchase Advance Guardian Heroes which I was following on eB*y because, you know…
    Your impression of Hidden Gems "theme" – Sundance Movie Award for Joe!

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