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Game Boy Advance in General (GBA)
Member Name: richy77
Game Boy Advance in General (GBA)
Date: 23/11/01, updated on 23/11/01 (106 review reads)
Advantages: Great graphics, Great games like Mario Kart and Street Fighter, 4 player link
Disadvantages: No Back lights
They say good things come in small packages and thats exactly what you get with the Game Boy Advance (GBA). This is the new handheld games machine by giants Nintendo. It follows on from the Game Boy and the colour Game Boy. The GBA is the worlds first 32bit handheld console and has some excellent games already in its collection.
The main reason for buying the Game Boy Advance was that my favourite game was released on it. I am a massive fan of Mario Kart and the GBA version of it is superb. As well as Mario kart the GBA also has such classics as Bomberman Tournament, Streetfighter, Rayman and Mario Advance.
Well I suppose you are wondering what all the big fuss is about. Well imagine a console with the power of between a Snes and a Playstation. Well that is what you get with the GBA. The resolution may only be 240x160 but due to the screen size the graphics look superb. The screen is a little wider than the original Game Boy but the overall size is about the same. I would say that that the width is a lot bigger but the height is less than the original. The good thing about the GBA is that it can easily fit in a pocket. It is very well designed as well. The layout is superb and it is very easy to hold and access all the buttons during hectic sequences in games. The sound quality is also surprisingly good. I wasn't really expecting much from the GBA but I was pleasantly surprised. There are connectors on the GBA so that you can plug in headphones so the sound is even better then!
The GBA in the UK comes in four colours. White, Red (which actually looks pink!), purple and see through blue. I have the see through blue one and it looks very nice. In Japan and the USA there are a few more colours which have been release. They include orange and black. They will probably make their way onto the market here in the next couple of months.
There are lots of accessories for the GBA already even though it has only been out for a little wh
ile. So far I own a carrier case for it as well as a light. The light is an essential purchase as the my main criticism of the console is the lack of back light. During the day it is not noticable but during the evening the GBA is virtually unplayable with out good lighting. Lights can be purchased from about £4 but for a decent one which will cover all the screen you are likely to pay around double that amount. The reason for Nintendo not having any lighting is due to the battery power that one would take. However after running my light for about a week now the batteries that I have been using still seem ok. Be warned you do need a light.
Other accessories available for the GBA include a radio, screen protector, tv Link (only in Japan), rechargeable batteries and 4 player link cables. Thats right it is possible to play GBA games with four players. Mario Kart comes into its own on 4 player mode. Each player needs their own cartridge but on some games one cartridge is needed.
Also worth noting is the backwards compatibilty of the GBA. For owners of the original Game Boy and the Game Boy Colour they can now play the games on the GBA.
If you are after a reasonable cheap console that you can carry around with you then I would completely recommend the Game Boy Advance. The graphics are superb and more and more games are being released by the day. At only £79.99 (WH Smiths) there is really no reason why you shouldn't go and pick one up now. With classic games like Tekken, Mario World and Grand Theft Auto on their way there has never been a better time to buy a handheld console.