May 2023 – Super Mario Land 2 (1992)

May! Warm weather! The end of hoodie times. A sad moment for some of us, a long-awaited moment of joy for sun-loving weirdos. You know what everyone loves, though? Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins.

This is another “boys in the back room” special and another easy crowd-pleaser. This was one of the first games I recall playing that really made me realize that video games were only going to get better and it was going to happen at a faster pace than I realized at a young age. It sounds silly, but it was the comparison of the graphics from Super Mario Land and its sequel that had me convinced. We went from something more rudimentary than the original Super Mario Bros. to big, cartoony sprites, world maps, and clever power-ups. Other than being in black & white this wasn’t some scaled-down version of its console counterparts: It felt like a real full-fledged console game, just smaller.  

Anyway, maybe I’m just feeling nostalgic. That doesn’t happen often, but this game definitely accesses specific memories about when I found video games really exciting.

Play it! -IF

I’m stoked to replay Super Mario Land 2 for probably the first time since childhood. My younger brother had a copy but I definitely “borrowed” it often. I remember really liking the music for the spooky zone and figuring out you can do a weird double jump in the space zone by holding down the jump button as you leave a platform.

All the bosses are fun and Wario puts up a good fight. Gunpei Yokoi even produced this one instead of Miyamoto! This one is also available on the Switch Online service, so I hope people give it a go! -NT

I got really into this game about ten years ago and I got to Wario’s castle with like eighty lives. I used like forty of those lives and got really frustrated and decided it was time to take a break. When I came back to the game an hour or so later, it was gone! My game was deleted. Do I blame a twenty year old battery or myself, for trusting a twenty year old battery. Anywho, stoked to play this on the Switch and save me that suffering again. -RV

Little Boy, Big Ghost – Nolen Tabner

I started this near the end of November, hoping to create something that was closer to the aesthetic of the Link’s Awakening remake. Little did I know that I’d be sucked into jury duty for the entire month of December and wouldn’t return to finish this until the end of January. It didn’t turn out exactly how I would have liked, but I’m just happy it’s complete!

You can find Nolen at

Tumble Pop Boi – Nolen Tabner

I had never known about this game until it was selected for Yokoi Kids in October. Cute enemies and fun gameplay, if a little slow-paced. The original idea for this piece was to have one of the protagonists sucking up one of the skeleton baddies but I had to scale it back due to lack of free time.

Nolen Tabner is a game designer and Game Boy enthusiast. Check out his stuff.

Tetris Plus Plus Plus – Nolen T.

My grandma used to play this game on her PlayStation. I had never played the Game Boy variant, but it does the arcade and PSX version justice. I started relearning 3D modeling when the country went into quarantine, so I had a lot of fun building this.–Nolen

Nolen Tabner is a game designer and Game Boy enthusiast. Check out his stuff.

September 2021: Mystical Ninja Starring Goemon (1998)

It’s September folks and that means a couple of things. First, we’re blowing through summer. Good riddance, I say! I am a cold-weather model human and I frankly think all of this sunshiney nonsense is for the birds. I’m looking forward to any inkling of cool fall days we may get here in Southern California. September also means a new game for us all to play! That’s of course why you’re here, not for my thick-blooded complaints about San Diego. We’re playing Mystical Ninja Starring Goemon, the 1998 Game Boy entry in the long-running and fan-favorite Goemon series by Konami. I know nothing about it! It’s one of those game franchises you’ve almost certainly heard of if you play video games, but the releases in the west were fairly under the radar and relatively few and far between compared to the releases in its native Japan. The games cover a bit of genre territory so while they are often action games there have also been RPGs, board games, and numerous cameos in other series’. This one is a top-down action/adventure game from the looks of it and I’m pretty excited to give it a go and see what I’ve been missing. Maybe I’ll finally get around to the entries on SNES and Nintendo 64 that have been recommended to me countless times! Here’s what our pal Nolen has to say as the fella who chose this month’s game:

“I’ve only played the Mystical Ninja game on the N64 and know that this one is pretty different. I’ve heard this game gets some hate for being boring but it was either this or Battletoads and I don’t want to piss everyone off again.”

An update on game prices and emulation:

When we started this a few years ago (wow!) there were plenty of cheap and readily available Game Boy games on the market. Not just bad ones, but a lot of great ones, too! We decided that we would try to keep our monthly game choices to under twenty buck-a-roos to keep participation Yokoi Kids cheap for those who wanted to add to their collection as they played along with us. That said, we have always been okay with the use of emulators for those who can’t or just don’t want to own the physical cart. We need to reiterate this especially now as the COVID-19 pandemic has sent video game prices skyrocketing. Reasonably priced games are jumping ten, twenty, one hundred dollars in value across all systems. Unless we want to be playing the dregs of the Game Boy library from here on out, we’ll likely have to break our price rules more than a few times. This is particularly true of this month’s game which we think is worthy of checking out, but can fetch up to $300 bucks in an online auction! Who’s got that money?! In the future, as has always been, play the game however you are most comfortable. Emulate away. We are also paying attention to which of these pricier games are available on the 3DS. This seems to be a nice middle-of-the-road solution as you can still play the game on physical hardware and they only cost like three bucks! CHEEP! 

So, in closing: The average price of the chosen games may start to go up, but please feel free to play the game any way you like. We won’t tell on you. Promise.

As always, we look forward to your contributions! 


Bimmy – Nolen Tabner

This started as a quick, dumb doodle and then turned into an excuse to refresh some 3D skills. I don’t remember if his name is Billy or Jimmy because even the file was named Bimmy.

I wanted to animate him but I made the mistake of modeling it already posed, which made rigging it too much effort for a small project.
This was made completely inside Unity3D, using a library called Clayxels. –Nolen Tabner

Nolen Tabner is a game designer and Gameboy enthusiast. Check out his stuff.

Your Belmonts – The Yokoi Kids

We made a post on Twitter to draw some of the lesser-known Belmonts. Here’s what we got.

–Nolen Tabner @nolentabner

Belmont_byJasonHamiltonFred Belmont was a disappointing part of the lineage. Afraid to even go out for groceries. Can be often seen shivering in a wall space. –Jason Hamilton @haiirocyon

Belmontpants_byJohnnyKetchumEveryone knows that Belmont clan would never wear pants. Jean Belmont was probably a result of a curse.  –Johnny Ketchum @johnnyketchum


Linda Belmont as seen in Double Dragon. (Gameboy version) –Rick V. @itsmerickv