2005... the year of Wi-Fi, Blogging, Nanotechnology, Hybrids, revolutionary leaps in the Robotic industry, and of course; The death of the Gameboy..
So what exactly happened that killed off what is considered the best looking Gameboy ever made?
Poor timing and lacking backwards compatibility, the Gameboy Micro released one year after the hugely successful Nintendo DS, it was dead in the water before it had even begun. The beautiful design, bright colourful screen and rich library of games made little difference to the fortune of the ill fated handheld. The Nintendo DS already had backwards compatibility with Gameboy Advance titles, the Gameboy Micro offered nothing particularly new or game changing to the Nintendo line up. That doesn't mean to say it isn't a fantastic console, if a version of the Micro was released today, it would do considerably better than it did on release. Nintendo quickly realised their mistake and cut their losses, the Micro was in production for only 3 years.
Nintendo Gameboy Micro - Famicom edition Flickr/Koecki
The Gameboy Micro was and still is Nintendo's only product to be housed in a metal shell
Nintendo's market strategy was for the Nintendo DS and Gameboy Micro to coexist, with the Micro continuing the Gameboy classic lineage whilst the DS explored new and innovative ways to game, leading to the introduction of stereoscopic 3D technology in the 3DS. The Micro market now consist of hobbyist and collectors, so if you're planning on picking one up, be wary that they are gradually increasing in value and rarity.
Is it time for a comeback?
The 3DS line is coming to a close with an impressive number of sales, will the Gameboy brand valiantly return? Probably not. Rumour has it Nintendo are releasing a smaller budget version of the switch to fill the huge gap the 3DS will inevitably leave behind. We may see a "Gameboy Classic Mini" soon continuing the profitable trend of repackaged console on a chip collectables, but it will likely have no cartridge slot and a small selection of some of the best sellers.
Oh well, I can dream....