I love the Game Boy. I have so much nostalgia for that handheld and still use my Game Boy Color almost every day as it sits on my nightstand beside the bed. GB Studio is an easy-to-use and free program that makes creating your own homebrew Game Boy games very doable. This means that there are constantly great new Game Boy games being created and I am listing 5 that I have played and enjoyed. This isn’t a ranking or in any order, it is just a list of some fun games you should check out! Some of these games even offer physical releases if you are interested in that. Very retro.
Black Castle (Created by User0x7f)
Where to get: itch.io
You are a young knight who must travel to a castle to take on a black warlock who has taken over the land. This game is rather short, but it is a blast. It reminds me of the Super Mario Land series had a child with the early Castlevania games. There are plenty of secrets for you to discover throughout, such as different weapons and increased health. Pretty standard, but effective.
Tobu Tobu Girl (Created by Tangram Games)
This game fits well with the phrase “easy to learn, difficult to master.” Your cat is floating away with a balloon and you must save it. Simple, right? Tangram Games put together this very addictive arcade platformer. You must bounce off objects, use your dash, and collect power-ups to get as high as you can. You can use your high-scores and points to unlock new levels as well. This game also has a deluxe version which comes in full color.
Repugnant Bounty (Created by Skittles Fiddles)
Where to Get: Itch.io
Playing as RoseMarie, an alien princess, on a bloodthirsty revenge tour. Some monsters killed her mom and her people, so she is traveling the planet Nimola trying to track down and eliminate all of them. This game is very impressive and really shows off not just what the Game Boy is capable of, but also what the homebrew community is capable of as well. This game is a full-blown Metroidvania with fantastic art and a great soundtrack as well.
Deadeus (Created by Izma)
Where to get: Itch.io
This a horror game, but made for the Game Boy. The game isn’t all that scary, but it is a little unsettling. You play as a boy who wakes up with a nightmare that everyone will die in 3 days. This game contains 11 different endings that you can try and find. This game is a pretty unique experience, especially for a handheld that came out in the ’80s. It is also our Game of the Week of the Year in our Discord as well. If you are interested in playing it and talking about it, join us over there!
Hime’s Quest (Created by Crunchy Roll)
Where to get: Crunchy Roll
Yes, you read that correctly. This game is from the anime streaming service, Crunchy Roll. As someone who doesn’t watch anime, I still found this homebrew game enjoyable. The game does include a good bit of references that may deter someone who isn’t a fan of the genre, but I still had a good time. The game takes place in 1999 and something funky is happening to the technology. Can you defeat Y2K? Gameplay is very reminiscent of the Game Boy Zelda titles and it is also short with only 4 bosses to beat. This game is worth a try!
There are so many great homebrew Game Boy games that this isn’t even the tip of the iceberg. I look forward to seeing what the future holds for the blossoming scene of homemade games for such a classic device. If you would like to see some more games on a future list, please let me know in the comments or stop by our Discord as well. Thanks for stopping by!