The Holy Grail of Game Boys: An Incredible Score!
by, 02-04-2012 at 05:11 AM (942 Views)
Stalking the Retro finds the Holy Grail of Game-Boys. I found it in this little shop hidden away in an electronics super mall that I often frequent.
Techno Mart is one of Seoul's most famous electronics malls. Eight floors of electronic goodness
Techno Mart very rarely has any retro games but I managed to find this little dusty and poorly maintained booth that had what I was looking for. I had seen the booth before but the seller never seemed to be around. I have walked past that booth about a hundred times in the last two years mostly because of what I saw in the window of his little display. That day I had this lucky feeling that someone would actually be there for once.
So on Thursday after looking around for the shop again for about half an hour I finally found it. It really is an out of the way booth that not only has no signage but isn’t anywhere near the game sellers booth zone.
Sure enough he was actually, for the first time in two years, sitting there in his little booth. So I asked him nonchalantly if he had any Game Boys and so he went over to his little sliding glass case and pulled out an ugly looking bright yellow Game Boy. It was so NOT the one I was interested in. I pointed at the Game Boy Light and asked him if I could take a look at it. I was totally expecting it to be just an empty box that he was using for display purposes but boy was I wrong!
He pulled it out of the case and sure enough inside was the most pristine looking Game Boy Light that I have ever seen. Then came the frightening question as I asked him how much he wanted for it.
You see anything that is even remotely retro in Korea goes for exorbitant prices. Some sellers in this particular electronics market try to sell standard game boy pockets and game boy colors for upwards of 80 bucks!
I gritted my teeth and waited for some astronomical figure to come rolling off of his tongue. When he said 40 bucks my mouth almost dropped to the floor! I had lucked out and found the one guy in this country that didn't know what he had.
I fumbled around in my wallet and pulled out the cash almost dropping my wallet in the process fearing that he would suddenly change his mind and say, "Oh I mean a hundred and forty bucks". The money changed hands and I just stood there looking at the Game Boy Light with awe and shock on my face.
Now I realize of course that there are even rarer versions of the Game Boy Light but I am still very happy to have found this one. So what the hell is a Game Boy Light you ask?
The Game Boy Light came out in 1998 and to say the least wasn't received very well. Nintendo didn't even give it a chance to succeed because six months later they released the Game Boy color and a month after that completely removed the Game Boy Light from store shelves.
The Game Boy Light was only ever released in Japan and since it was only produced in limited numbers it remains the most rare line of Game Boys to ever hit store shelves. Rumor has it that only around 12,000 units were ever sold. What makes it an awesome little hand held is that it is the first Nintendo product to include a back-lit screen. In fact they wouldn't release another back lit system until the Nintendo DS in 2004.
Do you remember those Timex Indiglo watches that were all the rave back in the early 90's? Well the Game Boy Light uses the electroluminescent technology with great success.
So you might be wondering why didn't they release that same kind of back light on the new Game Boy Color line of Game Boys? I mean they had the technology right? The reason why of course is really the charming part about this kind of back light. Indiglo back lights emit an awesome greenish blue light that would have ruined the colors on a Game Boy Color. On a black and white display however they really make the Game Boy shine!
I guess I might just be a nostalgic nut job but I still really dig the greenish pea soup look of the original Game Boy.
Please check out my video review of the Game Boy Light!
Or watch it on You-Tube.