It’s weird how collectible games for the Switch feel (hang on, we’re getting to Bubble Ghost). I’ve never been a big collector of current-gen platforms. Heck, the PS3 is the ‘newest’ console I collect for and that’s partly because of how dirt cheap most of the games are. The Switch is different. Sure, the games are all priced like current gen and many are reliant on a lot of things we’ve grown to hate like patches and memory space, but I love these little carts. This is largely the same way I feel about Game Boy games: the shape, the tiny art, and the promise of adventure and excitement. All in all, Nintendo may have been looking at what made their handhelds so special when carrying over that same magic to the Switch. For me, Bubble Ghost is a GB title that really sums this all up. It’s a simple concept with fantastic execution and delivers on the promise of fun for all, anywhere and anytime.
The original computer versions of Bubble Ghost are terrifying. It’s a combination of the available graphics and general aesthetics of the time. The Gameboy on the other hand, well, that got a Nintendo coat of paint. Now we have a cute Kirby-esque character interacting with a charming environment with single-screen puzzles. Get your bubble from point A to point B… because? I only have this game as a cart, so maybe the manual fills you in more.
The controls aren’t the best, but certainly serviceable and allow you to do most any maneuver you want. The music, while not varied, is really fun and adds to the excitement as well. I think what drives this game home is the simple yet enjoyable concept, and a style that feels like the team really pushed to make it unique and charming on the platform.
Looking for some tips? Pause right at the start of each level. You might not notice a burning candle or a fan in operation right when you start to explore. Pause, take your time, and plan out how you want to approach each room. Also, you will fail. A lot. It’s just gonna happen, but a generous life and continue count keep that from getting to be too much.
It’s one of those ‘just one more’ games. You will fail fairly consistently early on while you get used to the controls and obstacles, but you never feel like it wasn’t your fault. It’s the kind of thing that just fits what the GB was about, and I think why the Switch has seen some of the success it has. Bubble Ghost is, like many reviewed with Yokoi Kids, a ‘perfect’ Game Boy game.
D’Arcy is an educator and gamer from BC, Canada. He’s been gaming his entire life and enjoys both new and retro games. His consoles of choice are Game Boy, PS3, and Switch.You can follow his gaming online @darcyska_gaming