Tag Archives: Accessory Focus

The Game Boy Worm Light

Do you remember the Game Boy Worm Light? Chances are if you were playing video games in the early 1990’s, you probably do. You may have even owned one at one point in time. But why? What was this accessory’s purpose? Are they even worthwhile these days? Find out in this edition of Accessory Focus.

So for those of you who might not know, before the Game Boy Advance SP (technically the Game Boy Light was the first backlit Nintendo handheld, but it was never released outside of Japan), Nintendo handhelds were not lighted. That means if you wanted to see the screen, you had to have an external light source of some kind. A lamp, street light (when traveling at night in a car), overhead light, the sun, moon, etc. This limitation of the hardware could make playing games difficult at times. If you were someone who liked to take your Game Boy outside to play, really sunny days meant you had to deal with constant glare on the screen which as anyone who’s used a cell phone outdoors on a sunny day knows, it’s very challenging to see the screen much at all.

That is where accessories like the Game Boy Worm Light come into play. Several manufacturers had their own take on a Game Boy light source product. Nyko had the Worm Light which we’ve been talking about in this article. Vic Tokai had a product called Light Boy which you can see below. This particular accessory not only provided light but also magnified the screen. I think there were other manufacturers who had magnification accessories too and perhaps other lights.

As you can see, giving players a way to view their games in low light/no light conditions was a pretty good way to make some money in the Game Boy days. It was a clear need that Nintendo didn’t account for in the design of the hardware (likely as a cost-saving measure) and thus third parties came up with solutions to the problem. These accessories can still be viable today. The Worm Light can be purchased from eBay or the like for $4-10 each. The Light Boy meanwhile, is quite a bit more at ~$45+.  Conversely if you prefer an all-in-one solution, you can find Game Boy systems that have been modded with backlights for around $125-150 on eBay. Clearly the Worm Light is the cheapest option. You could also use a DIY approach, repurposing book lights and similar items for the same function on a Game Boy. Though depending on the kind you were to use, these might require some method of adhering the light to the system.

Of course you could always just play your original Game Boy games on the Super Game Boy accessory for the SNES or on a Game Boy Advance SP. The former would be on a TV while the latter is the first system that is Game Boy compatible to feature a built-in backlight.

Here’s some links to lights and pre-modded systems on Amazon & eBay.

Worm Light – Amazon | eBay

Light Boy – Amazon | eBay

Pre-Modded Backlit Original Game Boy – Amazon | eBay (Note: Amazon link is for a backlight kit, I was unable to find a pre-modded system on Amazon.)

Game Boy Light (NTSC-J/Japan Only) – Amazon | eBay

Images: Amazon (1 & 2), DDRGame, & Wikipedia

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