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Useful Notes / WonderSwan

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Bandai's entrant into the handheld console market in Japan. Visually, it looks like somebody crossed an iMac of the era (Bondi Blue!) with a Game Boy Advance. It came in a multitude of colors, and eventually got an upgrade with the WonderSwan Color and another with the SwanCrystal.

The system was the brainchild of Gunpei Yokoi, father of the Game Boy, who had recently retired from Nintendo and wanted to do something different in the game business. He left for Bandai in order to get it off the ground. Unfortunately, after Yokoi's untimely death in a car crash, the project lost a great deal of momentum... at a point when Nintendo was releasing the Game Boy Advance, which eclipsed the WonderSwan family quite quickly. In the end Yokoi's last creation never left Japan.

The system gave Nintendo a run for their money in the Japanese portable market; indeed, it's believed that the success of the WonderSwan Color gave the Big N enough of a fright to release the Advance so quickly on the heels of the Game Boy Color.


Games for the WonderSwan and WonderSwan Color:


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