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Underrated Systems – Neo Geo Pocket Color

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The Neo Geo Pocket Color, what an amazing underrated system. From a selection of great games, to awesome controls, this system is truly marvelous. But, many people don’t know of it’s existence. You may be wondering, “But, what is a Neo Geo Pocket Color?” Well, let’s open up the systems past, and dissect it!

I thought I’d start with the controls – wow. Just wow. The D-Pad/Analog Stick hybrid is absolutely astonishing. It takes a few minutes to get used to it, but it is one of the best control-sticks I have ever had the pleasure to use. The buttons are also pretty nice to use. The only disappointment for me is the Power and Options buttons, as they aren’t as nice (though they are usable).

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The system has an OS to boot to if there is no cartridge present. It has a calender, world time, horo-scope, settings and alarm applications built-in to this device. This is pretty cool, as many other systems at the time didn’t have anything that could compare to this.

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The screen is non-backlit. This is a major complaint, as you have to sit on the surface of the sun to see it. However, if you are playing in daylight, it isn’t that distracting. It has a resolution of 160×152, and the screen is 2.6 inches. Not the best screen ever featured on a handheld, but certainly better than the original GameBoy Advance.

Now, time for games. The Neo Geo Pocket Color only has 83 games, plus the 10 monochrome games from it’s predecessor. This is certainly disappointing, but it still has many great titles available.

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Games that I know are good are Sonic the Hedgehog Pocket Adventure, a port of Pac-Man and Pocket Tennis Color. I’ve only been able to play these, and they were …

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Underrated Systems – Game & Watch Series

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Now, I know what you’re thinking: “But most gamers who are familiar with the Game & Watch series like them!” (yes, I can read your mind now). But, that’s the main problem with these systems; most gamers don’t know that these exist, especially as the Game Boy overshadows every handheld system imaginable. But, is the Game & Watch underrated? Let’s find out!

One of the main gimmicks of these systems are that these have both a clock, and an alarm built in. It has a game built in as well (obviously). Another main selling point is it’s design; it’s pretty small, and looks cool.

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This is my Game & Watch system. This plays Balloon Fight.

There are many variations of these systems. They don’t use cartridges; instead, if you want to change the game you are playing, you change the whole system. One system has a different game from another. A bit like the classic Pop Stations (but actually worth money, and released by a proper company).

The system I own is Balloon Fight, but most of the systems have an identical control scheme and look. Most have a D-Pad, one action button, an Alarm button, a Time button and a Start button (usually branded as a “Game” button). Some systems (like the Donkey Kong one) have two screens, and act like the DS (the game plays on both screens, and the player can cross over into the other screen).

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The Donkey Kong Game & Watch System

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But, I will now answer the main questions people have about the system; how is the D-Pad compared to modern systems, and is the screen any good? The D-Pad (on my system, anyway) is pretty good, except it has separate buttons, compared to one piece of plastic on most modern …