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Game Boy Classic

Hardware Guide

A large number of hardware is available around Nintendo's Game Boy Classic. Partly released by Nintendo itself, partly licensed and partly without license. On this page you will find a compilation of the original and licensed hardware known to me. If something is missing, I'm happy to read from you.

Game Boy Original Hardware

ORIGINAL HARDWARE

These items were released by Nintendo itself. Some items were only offered for sale in individual countries. Hardware developed by Nintendo exclusively for the Game Boy Classic usually bears the identifier "DMG-" followed by an ascending number. DMG is an acronym for "Dot Matrix Game" used internally by Nintendo. However, there are exceptions, such as the Game Boy AC Adapter, which bears the identifier GB-8. There is also hardware developed in the later years of the Game Boy Series, which is compatible with the Game Boy Classic but not exclusively developed for it. These items also do not follow the DMG naming convention.

Game Boy™ Console

The Game Boy is Nintendo's first portable console with interchangeable game cartridges. The console has a directional pad, two action buttons (A, B) and a Start and Select button. The display is a monochrome LCD screen in green with no backlight. The console is powered by 4 standard AA batteries.

Game Boy Classic (DMG-01)
DMG-01
Game Boy™ Stereo Headphones

The stereo headphones were included with the main console in some sets. In Japan, this was sold separately under the designation DMG-02. The headphones were connected to the headphone jack on the bottom of the Game Boy. Unlike the Game Boy's mono speaker, the headphones could play sound in stereo.

Game Boy Stereo Headset (DMG-02)
DMG-02
Game Boy™ Rechargeable Adapter

The rechargeable adapter is a rechargeable battery (there are 4 AA batteries inside) that powers the Game Boy for about 10 hours. In addition, the device can also be used as an AC adapter for the Game Boy.

 

The adapter is available in a standard  (battery on the left) and a slightly larger version (battery on the right) depending on the countries voltage it was released.

IMG_20221104_101533.jpg
DMG-03
Game Boy™ Interactive Play-Cable

The Game Link cable could be used to connect two consoles for multiplayer gaming. This model is only compatible with the Game Boy Classic. To connect the Game Boy Classic with later models, use a Game Boy Link cable adapter (MGB-004) or the Universal Link cable (MGB-010) with adapter DMG-14.

DMG-04A

To reduce electromagnetic interference, Nintendo developed a revised version with a better shielded cable and sold it under the designation DMG-04A.

DMG-04 Interactive Play Cable
DMG-04
Game Boy Ineractive Play Cable (DMG-04)
Game Boy™ Battery Case

Nintendo's battery case (DMG-05) uses four replaceable C batteries to supply about 40 hours of additional power to the Game Boy. Compared to the rechargeable battery (DMG-03), the battery case is significantly larger and heavier. The battery case was only released in Japan and ist nowadays almost impossible to find.

DMG-05
DMG-05 Battery Case Game Boy
Game Boy™ Soft Case

The Nintendo Game Boy Soft Case is a storage bag designed to keep the Game Boy console and game cartridges safe. It is made of a material called Belleseime (a Japanese material made of a mixture of polyester and nylon microfibres that is dirt-repellent and very easy to clean). The soft case was originally launched with the original Gameboy in 1989.

The soft case is extremely rare. It was only sold in Japan in a very limited edition. As one of the few Game Boy Classic items, the softcase was given a DMG number (DMG-06) in Nintendo's internal numbering system. For Game Boy collectors, the Soft Case is probably the hardest accessory to find.

DMG-06
DMG-06 Game Boy Soft Case
DMG-07
Game Boy™ 4-Player Adapter

With the four-player adapter, up to 4 players can join together to play a multi-player game. The unit has a built-in link cable and three connectors for additional link cables. Only a few games in 4-player mode were released for the Game Boy. The 4-Player Adapter has also been bundled with some games (e.g. F1 Race).

IMG_20221017_150257.jpg
Game Boy™ Cleaning Kit

The Game Boy Cleaning Kit is used to clean the contacts of the game cartridges. Dirty contacts were a common cause of games no longer working. The Cleaning Kit was shaped like a game cartridge and was inserted into the cartridge slot of the game cartridge. A plastic stick with cleaning pads on both sides freed the contacts from dirt.

Game Boy Cleaning Kit (DMG-08)
DMG-08
Game Boy™ Cartridge

The classic game cartridge for the Game Boy also had a hardware code, although hardly known. The designation DMG-09 is not apparent on the game cartridges but same games mention the DMG number on the cardboard box (like "Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3"). It is also declared on Nintendo's website (for reference click HERE)

Game Boy Classic Cartridge (DMG-09)
DMG-09
Game Boy™ Battery Pack II - AC Adapter

The AC adapter (the grey item on the photo)  is used to charge the Battery Pack II (DMG-11). Unlike the Battery Pack I, the AC adapter can be separated from the Battery Pack. This means that the charged Battery Pack can be transported without the unwieldy AC adapter. The item was only sold in Europe.

Game Boy Battery Pack II (DMG-10)
DMG-10
Game Boy™ Battery Pack II

The Rechargeable Battery Pack II (the white item on the photo) is the further development of the Battery Pack I (DMG-03). The design is slimmer and lighter in weight. Charging time and performance are the same.  The Battery Pack II was only sold in Europe.

Game Boy Battery Pack II (DMG-11)
DMG-11
Unknown

No information available. If you know what item is behind this code, please send me a message.

DMG-12
Game Boy™ Rumble Pack Cartridge

A Game Boy game cartridge equipped with a vibration motor to give feedback to the player. The motor in the game cartridge is powered by a AAA battery. The game cartridge is used in games such as "Pokemon Pinball" and "Perfect Dark".

Game Boy Pokemon Pinball (DMG-13)
DMG-13
Game Boy™ Universal Game-Link Adapter

With the Universal Game Link Adapter, the Game Boy Classic can be connected to later Game Boy models.

The adapter was never purchased separately. It was only available in combination with the Game Boy Color Game Link Cable (CGB-003).

Game Boy Universal Link Adapter (DMG-14)
DMG-14
Unknown

No information available. If you know what item is behind this code, please send me a message.

DMG-15
Unknown

No information available. If you know what item is behind this code, please send me a message.

DMG-16
Unknown

No information available. If you know what item is behind this code, please send me a message.

DMG-17
Unknown

No information available. If you know what item is behind this code, please send me a message.

DMG-18
Unknown

No information available. If you know what item is behind this code, please send me a message.

DMG-19
Game Boy™ Tilt Sensor Game Pack

A Game Boy game cartridge equipped with an accelerometer. The sensor detects the position of the Game Boy and the speed at which the console is moved. Although the Game Pack is only compatible with Game Boy Color, interestingly enough, the game cartridge has been given a DMG number (DMG-20). This is the last item that follows the DMG coding.

The game cartridge is used in the game "Kirby Tilt 'n' Tumble".

Game Boy Tilt Sensor (DMG-20)
DMG-20
Game Boy™ AC Adapter

An AC adapter for the Game Boy Classic. This adapter was only sold in Japan. In the other countries, the Battery Pack was sold instead (DMG-03) as it offered an AC adapter built in.

Game Boy AC-Adapter (GB-08)
GB-8
Game Boy™ Game Link Cable Adapter

The adapter allows you to connect the Game Boy Classic to the Game Boy Pocket. To do this, the Game Link cable of the Game Boy Classic must be connected to the adapter, which is then plugged into the Game Boy Pocket.

Game Boy Classic to Game Boy Pocket Adapter (MGB-004)
MGB-004
Game Boy™ Camera

The Game Boy Camera (in Japan "Pocket Camera") was released together with the Game Boy Printer in 1998. The camera can take greyscale photos. These can then be edited with the camera's built-in software or transferred to compatible programmes/devices (e.g. Mario Artist). The pictures can be printed on thermal paper using the Game Boy Printer. The camera was available in different colors.

Game Boy Camera (MGB-006)
MGB-006
Game Boy™ Printer

The Game Boy Printer is a monochrome printer for the Game Boy series. Printing is done on self-adhesive thermal paper (MGB-009). The prints could thus be used as stickers. The device came on the market in 1998 together with the Game Boy camera (MGB-006). For the connection with the Game Boy a special Game Link-Cable was needed (MGB-010)

Game Boy Printer (MGB-007)
MGB-007
Game Boy™ Printer Paper

Self-adhesive thermal paper that came in different colours.  The printouts could be used as stickers due to the adhesive properties.

Game Boy Printer Paper (MGB-009)
MGB-009
Game Boy™ Game Link

The Game Link set allows to connect Game Boy consoles of different generations and other hardware, such as the Game Boy Printer. The set consists of the game boy universal link cable (CGB-003) and the DMG-14 adapter to connect the Game Boy Classic with the other devices (e.g. MGB-A-TS / MGB-A-TS2).

Game Boy Universal Link Cable (GBC-003)
MGB-A-TS / MGB-A-TS2
Game Boy™ Super Game Boy Adapter

The Super Game Boy allowed Game Boy games to be played on the TV with the help of the Super Nintendo (SNES). A complete Game Boy is integrated into the module, which passes the video signal on to the SNES. Greyscales are converted to colours and the colour palette could be adjusted on the SNES. 

Super Game Boy (SNSP-A-SG)
SNSP-A-SG
Game Boy™ Super Game Boy 2 Adapter
SHVC-042

This is a revised variant of the Super Game Boy that was only distributed in Japan. The housing is a transparent blue and is slimmer than the first variant.

The hardware has been expanded to include a Game Link connector and an LED display. The Game Link connector allowed the connection of a Game Boy or other compatible hardware with the Super Nintendo (e.g. Game Boy Printer). The firmware also received an update and had five new screen border graphics ready.

Super Game Boy 2 (SHVC-042 / Japan)
Game Boy™ Game Case

To protect the Game Boy game cartridges from external influences, each game was shipped with a protective plastic case. It is likely that the case claims one of the unassigned DMG codes.

Game Boy Game Case (DMG-12)
DMG-XXX
Game Boy™ N64 Transfer Pack

The Transfer Pak is an adapter for the Nintendo 64 that allows you to read a Game Boy or Game Boy Color cartridge on the N64. A Game Boy game cartridge can be inserted into the Transfer Pack. The Transfer Pack itself is inserted into the Nintendo 64 controller.

Game Boy N64 Transfer Pack (NUS-019)
NUS-019
Game Boy™ Belt Carry Bag

The fanny pack was released by Nintendo especially for the Game Boy Classic. The bag is padded and offers space for the Game Boy Classic, cables and a few games.

Game Boy Belt Bag (DMG ANC)
DMG ANC
Game Boy™ Player

The Game Boy Player (ゲームボーイプレーヤー, Gēmu Bōi Purēyā) allows to play Game Boy Classic, Game Boy Color and Game Boy Advance games on the Nintendo GameCube and is the last hardware solution for playing Game Boy Classic game cartridges on successor consoles.

The Game Boy Player hardware (DOL-017) plugs into the high-speed parallel port on the bottom of the GameCube. A boot disc (DOL-006) is required to access the hardware. The Game Boy Player does not emulate a Game Boy system. Instead, the attachment contains hardware that is almost identical to that of the Game Boy Advance.

GameCube Game Boy Player (DOL-A-GPPL)
DOL-A-GPPL
Game Boy™ Compact Carrying Case

Nintendo of America released this nylon soft carrying case exclusively for the American market in 1989. The bag has space for the Game Boy console (DMG-01), 4 games, headphones (DMG-02), the Video Link™ cable and a few game manuals. The bag can be attached to the wearer's belt for safe transport.

Game Boy Compact Carrying Case
045496720025
Game Boy™ Car Adapter

To prevent gamers from running out of energy during long car journeys, Nintendo released this power adapters for the cigarette lighter. This car adapter was only distributed in Japan. 

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VG-01

BUNDLE ACCESSORIES

The Game Boy was available in different variations. Various accessories were included with the bundles. Here you will find an overview of the additional items (if not already mentioned above).

Maxell Power Ace Red AA Batteries

The Game Boy came standard with 4 AA batteries. The Maxell Power Ace Red batteries were probably the most common type. In the meantime, the few batteries still in existence tend to run out and are now purely collector's items.

Game Boy (DMG-01) Maxell Power Ace Red
R6P AA
Hoaitri AA Batteries

These batteries were also used for various Game Boy bundles. In the meantime, the few batteries still in existence tend to run out and are now purely collector's items.

Game Boy Hoaitri AA Battery
R6 AA UM-3
Game Boy Licensed Hardware
Carry Bag

Nintendo has included this carrying case with some Game Boy bundles (e.g. Game Boy Console + Super Mario 1 & 2 + Carry Bag). The bag offers space for the Game Boy, 4 games and accessories in two separate compartments. 

Nintendo Carry Bag
UNKNOWN

LICENSED HARDWARE

These items were licensed by Nintendo but not distributed directly. Some items were only offered for sale in individual countries. Unlike the DMG coding of the original hardware, these items have their own coding logic depending on the supplier.

Pocket Sonar

The Pocket Sonar by Bandai is one of the most bizarre hardware accessories for the Game Boy. It is one of the officially licensed accessories for the Game Boy Classic. It was specially designed for anglers and allows them to locate fish under water. The extremely chunky device is battery-powered and fits into the module slot of the handheld console. The sonar, which is equipped with a float, hangs from a long cable. To prevent the Game Boy from getting wet, a dry bag is included in the delivery. The software also offers a mini-game and a fish database to identify the fish caught. The device works with the Game Boy Classic and the Game Boy Pocket but not with later models.

Game Boy Pocket Sonar
Handy Boy

The Joyplus Handy Boy™ by STD is one of the most curious hardware accessories that exist for the Game Boy Classic. The device was an attempt at an all-in-one solution to the most common improvement requests of the Game Boy fan community. The Handy Boy features a screen magnifying glass and lights for the missing backlight of the screen. In addition it gives the Game Boy a rich stereo sound with the two built-in speakers. The device doesn't need its own power supply as it taps into the Game Boy batteries with a creative cable solution.