3-Year Anniversary: Me and My Game Boy Advance

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It’s been three years since I started this blog site. Well, I started on WordPress, then went to Blogger and…it was a complete mess. I mean I was still using it like a plonker for a while, but the editing and how to even do anything was messy. I made tons and tons of reviews and there were of low quality looking back. But I went back to WordPress and I’ve been here since. But I’ve been doing it for years and overtime, I’ve tried my best to improve and it looks like I have. So I’m going to celebrate this three-year anniversary of my venture of critique. I’m going to talk about my experiences with one of the first ever consoles I ever owned…apart from the PlayStation, but that’s for another day. The Nintendo Game Boy Advance, and here’s my history with it.

The Party

It was 2003, I went to a birthday party, I don’t remember who’s birthday it was but my auntie lived a few houses away. Now I don’t exactly remember what I did there. Kids were outside and everyone had a good time. There was this boy who lived there (I don’t know if it was his birthday) who had a Game Boy Advance, and he played a game called Sonic Advance 2, he then showed me how the game works. Sonic was running fast, bosses were challenging, the graphics were appealing to me, I knew it was a game I wanted, but to get the game, I needed that console too.

The most important Christmas List in my life

It was nearing Christmas and my Dad asks me what I want for Christmas. Of course, I wanted a Game Boy Advance. He then asked me what game I want for it. And of course…I asked for Finding Nemo…and not Sonic Advance 2, all because I saw an advert of the PS2 port, I thought I would get a fully 3D game on my Game Boy Advance, just like the one I saw on TV. I was a child and as a child I was stupid.

Deez Nuts roasting on an open memes…#killthememes

It was Boxing Day, I went to see my Dad. He gave me a present and it was…a silver Game Boy Advance SP and a copy of Finding Nemo. I put the game in, turned it on and…it was nothing like the game I saw in the adverts. And yet, I wasn’t disappointed, in fact, I didn’t really care, I was playing a game, it may not be something I was expecting, but it was a game nonetheless. I remember having fun with Finding Nemo and having hours of fun. I don’t have the game anymore (I may have lost it somehow), looking back (and when I mean looking back, I mean watching YouTube videos) it looked OK, it was good enough for me.

Remembering WHY I got the console in the first place

About a week later, maybe January of 2004, my mum wanted to get me a game from Argos (UK residents know what I’m talking about). But I had two choices: Mario Kart Super Circuit or Sonic Advance 2. Now I choose Sonic Advance 2 and this game would be my childhood and my first experience of a Sonic game, and would also make me interested in playing the classic games I’ve heard about.

My handheld childhood

I eventually got other games from then on. My birthday of 2004 I got Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3, and I had a lot of fun with this and one of the reasons why Super Mario Bros. 3 would remain my favourite Mario game of all time. I went to a shopping centre in Stevenage and got Sonic Advance 1. That game was also good, but that’s for another day. At this point, I was a Sonic fan as a child, I even drew him all the time, I just adored this character.

I collected more games overtime, like Sonic Pinball Party, more Sonic games for the win. One Christmas, I wanted and got Ultimate Spider-Man due to seeing one 3D screenshot…still dumb, but again, I had fun with it. As well as Ultimate Spider-Man, I got yet ANOTHER Sonic game, Sonic Battle, though, I do remember finding it OK, but overtime I got bored of it, this has never happened to me but hey-ho, I have other Sonic games.

Speaking of Sonic, I was still playing Sonic Advance 2 at this point. And then an advert appeared: It was Sonic Advance 3. This was the first time I’d been excited for a game. On Christmas of 2004, I got my copy of Sonic Advance 3 and it remained one of my favourite game in the series…then I lost it along with Super Mario Bros. 3. That was…sad. I think there was one point where I nearly got Grand Theft Auto Advance, but I don’t know what happened there.

Another Christmas, I got Mario Vs. Donkey Kong, a highly fun puzzle game and one I’ll take a look at one day…it’s another game I lost. I also got Superman Returns: Fortress of Solitude…it sucked, I thought it was going to be an action game, but it was a boring puzzle game. There was also The Simpsons Road Rage after seeing it on the PS2. It was OK, but I beat it in a weekend and never looked back…I also lost that but I didn’t care at the time. Thank goodness for Mario Vs. Donkey Kong.

There was also The Incredibles, because I had to pick a random game because I got Marvel Ultimate Alliance, I didn’t know how the game worked or how to played it, so I got something different, and that was The Incredibles. The game was a beat ’em up, in fact, it was my first game I played in that genre, long before I even got to play some of the classics. One day, I went to a market and…well read the Donkey Kong 3 review. And to get my retro kicks, the one game to turn me into a man, was Castlevania as part of the NES classics, it was hard, it was mean, lean, and the medusa and knights parts were a nightmare. And then…it all stopped. I got the Wii and near enough abandoned the Game Boy Advance. But I still played the console every now and then.

The Game Boy Advance SP, I’ve had it since 2003. It’s now 2016 and the console has survived for almost 13 years and I still collect games for it, I have 18 games for it so far, so collecting is still small but I mostly collect the good games. I even did a top 10 list of GBA games I want to play and get, here’s a link. I’ve played four and got five of the games on the list, maybe I’ll update the list…maybe.

This will be a console I will always treasure, and not just for the childhood memories, because of Sonic Advance 2, it got me into the classic Sonic games, because of Sonic Pinball Party, it got me into wanting to play Sonic Spinball, and most of all, because of Castlevania, it got me interested into retro games…along with the Angry Video Game Nerd, but that’s for another review…and yes, it will one day be THAT game.

So, what console was your childhood, any great and unique memories you had, comment down below, I’m quite interested.

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