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An extensive look at the hardware behind the original Game Boy

In his appropriately named 'Ultimate Game Boy Talk,' Michael Steil breaks down the hardware that powered Nintendo's early handheld with incredibly detailed explanations of what makes the Game Boy tick.

Alissa McAloon, Publisher

January 4, 2017

1 Min Read

In this talk from the 2016 Chaos Communication Congress, hacker and operating system aficionado Michael Steil runs through 200 slides of information about the tech and evolution of Nintendo’s Game Boy handheld in a tightly packed but highly informative 60-minute talk. 

He isn’t joking by calling this the Ultimate Game Boy Talk. Throughout the hour-long segment, Steil runs through just about everything you’d ever need to know about Nintendo’s early handheld console, including information about how the hardware evolved through the years and how each new model stacked up against other gaming platforms of the time.

But really, those comparisons just scratch the surface of what Steil covers in the video embedded above. After a brief introduction of the platform, he quickly dives into the nitty-gritty of the hardware behind the Game Boy with extensively detailed explanations of the CPU, joypad input, timer, interrupt controller, sound controller, pixel processing unit, and other components that make the handheld tick.

For more like this, check out similar talks about the Commodore 64, Atari 2600, Galaksija, and Amiga 500 from both Stell and other speakers. 

About the Author(s)

Alissa McAloon

Publisher, GameDeveloper.com

As the Publisher of Game Developer, Alissa McAloon brings a decade of experience in the video game industry and media. When not working in the world of B2B game journalism, Alissa enjoys spending her time in the worlds of immersive sandbox games or dabbling in the occasional TTRPG.

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