How the Game Boy ᵃˡᵐᵒˢᵗ ruined Nintendo - LowSpecLore -

How the Game Boy ᵃˡᵐᵒˢᵗ ruined Nintendo – LowSpecLore

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The Game Boy was a low spec machine that changed gaming, so why was it so hard to develop? And how did it almost destroyed Nintendo from the inside?

En español:

Sources for how LCD work and their history:

Terry Scheffer, Jürgen Nehring (1997). Supertwisted nematic (STN) liquid crystal displays. Annual Review of Materials Research.

E P Raynes. C M Waters (1987). Supertwisted nematic liquid crystal displays.

Hirohisa Kawamoto (2012). The History of Liquid-Crystal Display and Its Industry. 2012 Third IEEE HISTory of ELectro-technology CONference (HISTELCON)

Source for the historical bits:

History of Nintendo, Vol 4 by Florent Gorges

Source for the image of Uemura:

Famicom Tsushin magazine, July 1989. Scanned by:

The ultimate Game Boy talk:


Most of the music and music timing by Roccow:
Other song by Epidemic Sound:

Drawings by Maiku No Koe:

3D animations by Windy.

Smash Intro by Dango

Join the community:

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Stock Footage from Getty


  1. So interesting to learn what goes on behind the scenes of our most iconic consoles.

  2. Should have canceled gba v1 because of that screen

  3. talk slower, your accent is hard enough to understand already.

  4. I never knew that the Famicom team and mobile team were rivals on the level of Gary and Ash.

  5. Hey remember how Sony falsified PS2 sales to be just 0.5 million higher than the Nintendo DS so they would have the "highest selling console of all time" with a glorified red screening DVD player? Good times.

  6. I wasn't a fan of that monochrome low refresh LCD but I still enjoyed the unit.

  7. Been some months since I last watched a video of yours (gotta love the YT algorithm) but damn your production quality has shot up. Great video!

  8. LowSpecsGames i have been woundering can 2gb of ram a intel cerelon and no gpu can run warzone or any high specs games with lowering the graphics with a software or somthing. Is it possible to not blow your pc up in flames?

  9. the rivalry between Nintendo's RD1 and RD2 reminds me of IJA and IJN during WW2. This must be a Japanese thing

  10. Well I learned 2 things, how LCD screens work and how a Nintendo employee may had inadvertantly created the Sega Game Gear, seriously never heard that story before.

  11. Hey, I am korean.
    I have a favor to ask of you.
    I want your video with korean subtitles.
    Can you add korean subtitles?

  12. This is seriously the best Gaming Console Documentary I've ever seen, and I'm a Glutton for this sort of content. Just amazing. So well done. I can only imagine how long this took, getting in contact with the sources & interviewing them, having the custom CGi made, having the custom drawings made, editing, music, etc.
    If LSG is reading, maybe consider republishing this video under another title, as the first in a new series maybe, making it more clear this is a full documentary on the making of the GameBoy, as this video's viewcount is WAY too low for the quality of this content. People need to see this. You deserve so much attention for this. This is DigitalFoundry level work.

  13. I really like this format from you, really well researched and enjoyable to watch

  14. Hola, nuevo suscriptor….
    Recomendado por nate gentile!!

  15. Do you know where i can buy a gpd win max ?

  16. Es justo lo que estaba esperando de ti, qué buen documental, ojalá hagas muchísimos más.

  17. This documentary is so well professionally made and as if made by some big tv broadcasters.

  18. Hi, could you do a apex legends video again? i feel like it harder to get fps now days, its been 2 years since last video. I personally would appreciate it so much and the community.

  19. My god this is beautiful. Hope another series will follow soon

  20. I will always consider the gray little brick my favorite console as it was also my first. It shaped my childhood and forever change my perception of what a portable console could be.

  21. Dude this was such a great watch!!! You're content is always incredible but this was really captivating!

  22. I still remember when my cousin got her 1st gen GameBoy… it was a magical time. She had 3 games–Super Mario World, Popeye, & Tetris. The ability to save games is such a breakthrough compared to Game&Watch.

    Fast forward many years later, I now own a GPD Win Max 2020 version, GPD Win 3, ONEXPLAYER, and I have AYA NEO, GPD Win Max 2021, & Steam Deck 512GB on preorder. What a time to be a gamer! 😁

  23. This is an absolutely amazing video. Well done sir!

  24. The whole "third parties were doing things that Nintendo engineers couldn't" is how Starfox came to be!
    Good topic for another video.
    Some young programmers cracked the game boy (too poor to get a devkit) and actually made a 3D WIRE FRAME GAME FOR THE GAMEBOY. Nintendo was so impressed, they [didn't do their normal thing of suing for cracking it and] flew the engineers to Japan to explain it.
    Those random guys then tried to make a way to make the SNES 3D. The system wasn't really capable but they then kinda winged it and said they could make a cartidge chip for 3D games with some random great specs. After lots of time alone in a basement office of Nintendo's dev company, eventually, they did, and the specs were even greater than their bogus estimates! They then went on, in that same basement office, to create Starfox, given direction by Miyamoto himself, who would pop in all the time, as that was the only place in the office he was allowed to smoke (secluded, away from all the Japanese employees).

    If only those like 20 year old programmers had been there (and 20 years old…) at the start of the snes dev, the snes would have been an incredibly more powerful machine!

    Side note: those programmers then went on to develop some of the original concepts for the N64 and Mario 64, but were betrayed, had their work taken without credit (as their contracts allowed), removed from the project, and it fleshed out into Mario 64.
    The remnants were allowed to become Croc64 eventually…
    Also, Starfox 2 was pretty much complete, but as the next Gen consoles were already out, Nintendo didn't want the publicity of releasing an "old fashioned, low tech 3D game" (ie showing Nintendo as desperate and out if date) compared to Saturn and Playstation, and so Nintendo just shelved it, and told the team "tough luck, scrap your 95% complete game, no release in any form".
    Typical Nintendo betrayal (though maybe the correct business move, so very non-typical for Nintendo…).

  25. Interesting how you can look at the corporate culture of rivalry between divisions throughout the companies previous history and then contrast this to the decision to focus on one price of hardware, the switch. I wonder how this transformed the culture?

  26. Yokoi: "What the hell are YOU doing here?"

    Sharp: "Well Yokoi san. We have a better offer for our LCDs"

    Yokoi: "No thanks. We just made a deal with Citizen"

    Sharp: "Too bad Yokoi San…….It seems we have to let our Yakuza friends collect your Pachinko debt….. what a shame…."

    Yokoi: signs the Contract with Sharp reluctantly

    Sharp: "A pleasure doing business with you ^_^ Arigato."

  27. Me encanto el giro que le diste a canal, fue raro escucharte ingles, pero magnífica Información. Excelente trabajo !!!! Muchas felicidades

  28. Nintendo realized that going with Citizen would be going behind the back of their established business partner Sharp and had to take a hit one way or the other preferring to keep the established relationship.

    Feels very similar to how Nintendo runs it's own distribution almost everywhere but even after establishing Nintendo of Europe they still uses Bergsala for their Northern Europe distribution to this very day since Bergsala has been their Nordic distribution partner all the way back to Game and Watch days.

    And they say there's no honor in business…

  29. You explained polarization so so well. Great work LowSpecGamer!

  30. algo hablas inglés demasiado bien al igual que español, como lo haces 😮

  31. I really want to hear the story behind the Gameboy Color.
    I think it's one of the weirdest handhelds of all time because of its rather late release, it being heavily based on the original Gameboy, and it having a staggering 6 different revisions of the main chipset!
    It also has over a dozen unused or test pins that I am very curious to learn the purpose of from insider R&D stories!

  32. 8:19 it bothers me so much to see a guy probing some resistors with a screwdriver…

  33. sad to know the game boy sucked so bad at a cpu and ppu level was because gunpey despited the famicom team and didn't want his project to turn into another famicom, instead he made a poors man famicom, gameboy could be so much more if it had a bit of a better hardware, but instead it turned into a pokemon player eventually.

  34. Ah, I see yet another reason RCA went bankrupt… I guess that's not the only good idea they rejected 😂

  35. 8:39 Oh, damn, just by the pronunciation of the name, I know he's from my country. 50% chance that his English is crap… bingo. (on est vraiment merdique)

  36. It's actually sad how this video didn't do well. it's so well made!

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