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Video Game / Game & Watch Gallery

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The cover for Game & Watch Gallery.

Game & Watch Gallery is a series of games made for the Game Boy that are Compilation Rereleases of the Game & Watch series of handhelds.

Four games were released for this series (five counting Game Boy Gallery, which predates the first game to actually use the Game & Watch Gallery name but was only released in Europe and Australia), each containing a few new versions of the Game & Watch games. In all of the Gallery releasesnote , the updated Game & Watch games can be played in two different visual styles: "Classic", which is a recreation of how the games originally looked, and "Modern", which uses a new visual style that utilizes the characters from the Super Mario Bros. series.

The games in the series are:

  • Game Boy Gallery, which contains the Game & Watch titles Ball, Vermin, Flagman, Manhole, and Mario's Cement Factory (renamed here as just Cement Factory).
  • Game & Watch Gallery, which contains the titles Manhole, Fire, Octopus, and Oil Panic.
  • Game & Watch Gallery 2, which contains the titles Parachute, Chef, Donkey Kong, Helmet, and Vermin. Ball is also featured as an unlockable game.
  • Game & Watch Gallery 3, which was released for the Game Boy Color and contains the titles Egg, Green House, Turtle Bridge, Mario Bros., and Donkey Kong Jr. Flagman, Judge, Lion, Spitball Sparky, and Donkey Kong II are also unlockable as Classic versions only, alongside a special prerelease variant of Fire.
  • Game & Watch Gallery 4 (Game & Watch Gallery Advance in Europe and Australia), which was released for the Game Boy Advance and contains the titles Fire, Boxing, Rain Shower, Mario's Cement Factory, Donkey Kong Jr., and Donkey Kong 3. Chef, Mario Bros., Donkey Kong, Octopus and Fire Attack are also featured as unlockable games. Through the Museum, it's also possible to play Classic versions of Manhole, Tropical Fish, Mario's Bombs Away, Parachute, Bombsweeper, Climber, Safe Buster, Lifeboat, and Zelda.

Tropes that apply to the Game & Watch Gallery series:

  • Adapted Out: Peach replaces Pauline in the Modern version of Donkey Kong while Yoshi and Mario replace Stanley in the Modern versions of Greenhouse and Donkey Kong 3, respectively.
  • A Day in the Limelight: Some modern versions give other characters central focus:
    • Wario in Helmet, playable through an Easter Egg. He's also the protagonist in Fire Attack and can be unlocked in Ball.
    • Princess Peach in Chef.
    • Bowser in Ball.
    • Toad in Turtle Bridge.
    • Luigi in Boxing is the only game where he is playable without Mario.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • The ability to suspend play by pausing and turning off the power. Earning 1,000 points can take roughy a half an hour if successful on the first try, so this was a welcome feature.
    • Two Classic modes in 3 reduce the number of points necessary for stars. In Flagman, five points are needed per star so you can max out at 25 points. You get a star for every 20 points in Judge, and getting the maximum score of 99 rewards you with five stars.
    • In both versions of Boxing in 4, you get a star for every three KO's so you can max out at 15.
    • In classic versions of Manhole, the central character can only possess one cover at a time, and allowing pedestrians to walk over an open hole is an immediate miss. In the modern version from the first Gallery, Yoshi is provided with covers for all four holes which he can bring up each time a pedestrian walks on one. Yoshi can also avoid a miss by saving a pedestrian in mid-fall.
    • In the original Mario's Cement Factory, the moving platforms were lethal if you weren't immediately on their level when trying to board them, falling right through any other platforms that might be on the screen at the time, which could get ridiculous if the platform was about to rise and you just pressed the button a tiny bit too early. In the Modern version, jumping down onto a platform below you is possible and you won't take damage.
    • The Wii U Virtual Console rerelease of 4 removes the two-player modes in Boxing and Donkey Kong 3. After you get every star in all the other games, you will be credited with the unattainable stars and treated to the cast credits.
  • Artifact Title:
    • The games no longer have watch or alarm functions. But you probably already knew that.
    • Some modern versions of the games in Gallery also qualify compared to their classic counterparts:
      • In Vermin, you control Yoshi who must defend his eggs against Fly Guys, Paratroopas and Boos instead of vermin. Subverted as Monty Mole will allow Yoshi to repair some eggs by giving him a heart.
      • In Ball, the character you play will juggle many items not resembling balls.
      • Subverted in Egg. Instead of catching eggs laid by hens, Yoshi must catch cookies on a conveyor belt. If he eats enough of a type of cookie at the right temperature, he will lay an egg.
      • In Turtle Bridge, you control Toad who must cross a makeshift bridge of Goonies across an open sky instead of turtles across a pond.
      • In the original Rain Shower, a man is trying to keep his hanging clothes dry from a passing shower. In the remake, Mario must protect his friends from paint balloons thrown by Bowser.
      • The remake of Mario's Cement Factory takes place in a cookie factory.
      • The new Fire Attack involves Wario protecting a giant golden statue of himself from being blown up by Bullet Bills and Bob-ombs — as opposed to a Cowboy protecting a wooden fort from being burned down by Native Americans.
  • Border-Occupying Decorations: The first three games feature dynamic Super Game Boy borders based around the various included games. Playing them in modern mode presents borders depicting lush landscapes, many of which imitate the visual style of Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island. Playing them in classic mode, however, bring up borders based on the original Game & Watch devices. The original Game Boy Gallery, meanwhile, only features the Classic borders.
  • Bowdlerise:
    • The remakes of Mario Bros. take place in a cake factory. These may have been updated from the bottling plant on classic versions to avoid possible references to beer.
    • The classic versions of Fire Attack remove The Savage Indians' headdresses, making them look more like Wild West outlaws.
    • The classic versions of Fire have any dropped people simply limp away and the Miss icon is a pair of bandages. In the original, it's all but stated that anyone you dropped dies and the Miss icon is a person with a halo to reflect that.
  • Canon Immigrant: 4, released in 2002, officially adopts the Mr. Game & Watch design used in Super Smash Bros. Melee.
  • Compilation Rerelease: Good thing, too, because by the time the Colbert Bump arrived, the original line had been out of production for ten years.
  • Covered in Gunge: Much like the classic counterparts, these result in misses.
    • Yoshi letting Toad, Donkey Kong Jr. or Mario fall in Manhole.
    • Mario dousing Donkey Kong Jr. or Luigi with oil in Oil Panic.
    • In Mario's Cement Factory, letting one of the cookie dough basins overflow with the excess dough landing on either Yoshi or Toad.
    • Rain Shower adds the possibility of Mario's friends getting hit with Bowser's paint balloons (except for Yoshi who eats them).
  • Death Throws: Some of the modern versions of the games use this to indicate a miss.
  • Double Unlock: The Museum in 4 has nine classic titles which are revealed as stars are obtained. After they are posted, collecting even more stars can unlock each one to playable.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness:
    • Game Boy Gallery had no distinction between Modern and Classic modes and instead each game had a hybrid of the two future modes for its games. The games also featured neither the Game & Watch men nor the Mario cast and instead featured a living marionette as the sole playable character.
    • The first Game & Watch Gallery game, compared to later releases.
      • The Gallery Corner only had the unplayable demos, which would become the Museum from 2 onward.
      • There was no star counter, as titles in the Gallery Corner required 400 or 800 points to open.
      • The heart in Modern versions was much smaller and harder to see.
      • Different sound effects played for pausing in Modern and Classic versions.
      • Getting a Game Over sent you back to the Mode Select screen, with no option to retry.
  • Easter Egg: In Modern Helmet, if you get a game over with less than 100 points and choose to retry, you'll play as Wario.
  • Gaiden Game: The first official game in the series is Game Boy Gallery which was only launched into UK and Australian markets in 1994. It includes Ball, Manhole, Vermin, Flagman and Mario's Cement Factory (renamed to just Cement Factory). The games are simply the classic variants with updated visuals, there are no Mario characters or references whatsoever and it noticeably lacks features that made the rest of the series more enjoyable (suspend play, unlockables, score saving etc.). The only reason it can be considered part of the series at all is that Australia used Game Boy Gallery as its Market-Based Title for all future Game & Watch Galley releases.
    • For those interested into game coding, Wario Land II uses the Game Boy Gallery version of Flagman as the basis for one of the minigames, including the Super Game Boy border. Also counts as Remade Forthe Export, as Wario Land II was released in Japan and North America.
  • Jerkass Ball:
    • Peach shows little concern over Mario injuring himself in the Attract Mode for Donkey Kong, ignoring him in favor of cheering the guy who caused said injury. In modern remakes of Octopus, she doesn't show concern for Mario when he's attacked by the octopus.
    • in the the Attract Mode for Rainshower, Waluigi deliberately tries to bring harm to a toad. In the game proper, he'll sometimes put Wario in the line of fire.
  • Justified Extra Lives: Subverted in modern remakes of Octopus. Classic versions retain the divers who disappear when you lose them. Modern modes use a traditional miss counter.
  • Market-Based Title: Game & Watch Gallery and the two games that follow it are known as Game Boy Gallery 2, Game Boy Gallery 3, and Game Boy Gallery 4 in Australia. Game & Watch Gallery 4 is known as Game & Watch Gallery Advance in Australia and Europe.
  • Medium Blending: The Cast Credits in 4 feature the Modern and Classic characters interacting with each other.
  • One-Hit-Point Wonder: Drop an object in Ball or catch a Bob-omb in the modern remakes, and the game is over.
  • 100% Completion: Unlocks the Cast Credits. Good luck with that.
  • Promoted to Playable: Mario, Luigi and Yoshi are protagonists in the Game & Watch Gallery games. The sequels play with this.
    • 2: Wario is playable in Helmet through an Easter Egg, and Princess Peach is the main character in Chef. Ball also has unlockable characters in Wario and Bowser.
    • 3: Toad is the central character in Turtle Bridge, and Donkey Kong Jr. is playable in his namesake game. Luigi—a background character in Chef from 2—returns to being playable in Mario Bros.
    • 4: Wiggler, Big Boo and Waluigi are playable through linked play in Boxing. The same goes for Donkey Kong in the two-player version of Donkey Kong 3. Peach again is the central character in Chef while Wario goes from NPC in 3 to playable in Fire Attack. Inverted with Yoshi who is not playable for any of the games in 4.
  • Retraux: The Game Boy is clearly capable of more than calculator graphics, but that would defeat the purpose, wouldn't it?
  • Revisiting the Roots: The Modern versions revisit Mario's original role as The Everyman working a variety of odd jobs (particularly games he originally starred in, such as Mario Bros. and Mario's Cement Factory), but with the supporting character and elements he's accumulated since.
  • Slapstick: In the modern remake of Rain Shower, Princess Peach is a possible victim of Bowser's paint balloons.
  • Songs in the Key of Panic: In Modern versions of the games, the music will get faster as your points get closer and closer to a hundred. They go back to a slower tempo once you get those next hundred points. When you reach 1,000 points, it stays at the fastest speed possible.
  • Suddenly Speaking: 4 is the only time that Mr. Game & Watch has ever talked.
  • Super Title 64 Advance: Game & Watch Gallery 4 is titled Game & Watch Gallery Advance in Europe and Australia.
  • Unintentionally Unwinnable: In order to complete the museum of 3, one needs to get 5 stars in every mode for each game. One of these is Game B of Judge, which instead of a harder version, is a 2-player version. Because the 3DS Virtual Console Game Boy lacks a multiplayer mode, this makes collecting stars in that game impossible.
  • Unlockable Difficulty Levels: Every game in the collections has two difficulties of easy or hard (excluding those with a multiplayer function). If one gets 1000 points on either difficulty for the modern version of a game, a very hard star mode is unlocked for that game (again with the exception of games with a 2-player).
  • Un-person: In 2, Pauline is referred to as such in the Museum's exhibit on Donkey Kong. In 3, she's only known as a "damsel in distress".
  • Use Your Head: In modern versions of Manhole, Yoshi uses his nose on the top row to keep covers and pedestrians from falling.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment:
    • In the modern versions of Chef, you can feed burnt foods to Yoshi. Doing so will not result in a miss, but he will either lose his egg or shrink down to baby-sized depending on his condition. Strangely enough, you get a point for doing this.
    • In Fire Attack, Wario can stand near egg-laying hens for bonus points. You don't get any points for hitting one but you also don't get a miss.
  • Video-Game Lives: The games usually take a variant on this; they track misses instead (which can be removed with a 1-Up bonus). Donkey Kong is the outlier where the game tracks lives the traditional way.
  • Updated Re-release: The Modern versions, and to further that, 4 contained further-remastered versions of several of the games in the previous three in the series.
  • What Could Have Been: In-universe. 3's version of Fire was an early factory beta that was less detailed and reversed right-to-left, included and playable as a historical curiosity.
  • Wins by Doing Absolutely Nothing: In 4, you get a star for playing each two-player mode of Donkey Kong 3 and Boxing regardless of the outcome.
  • Wolverine Publicity: Mario and friends were the main attraction, as Mr. Game & Watch wouldn't be recognizable or appealing to contemporary audiences until 2001. Mr. Game & Watch himself would eventually become a featured character in the final installment.