Gaming companies had launched primitive and clumsy portable consoles in the past, but it was the arrival of the Nintendo Game Boy that launched mobile gaming into the modern era.
Reliable, simple, and bundled with Tetris, the Game Boy was launched in 1989, but it was undoubtedly one of the hottest games of the ’90s.
The Game Boy received mixed reviews from critics and was initially deemed as technologically inferior to its fourth-generation competitors (Sega’s Game Gear, Atari’s Lynx, and NEC’s TurboExpress).
Its lack of a backlight, graphics, bulky design and price were criticised, but it also received praise for its battery life, its low price, the library of games and durability in its construction.
It quickly outsold the competition, selling one million units in the United States within a few weeks.
It is one of the most recognisable devices from the 1990s and became a cultural icon in the years following its release.
An estimated 118.69 million units of the Game Boy and its successor, the Game Boy Color, have been sold worldwide, making it the third best-selling video game console of all time.
Production of the Game Boy continued until 2003, well after the release of its second successor, the Game Boy Advance, in 2001.
In 2009, the Game Boy was inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame, 20 years after its introduction.