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The Game Boy (Japanese: ゲームボーイ, Hepburn: Gēmu Bōi) is an 8-bit handheld video game device with interchangeable cartridges developed and manufactured by Nintendo, which was first released in Japan on April 21, 1989 (1989-04-21), in North America on July 31, 1989 (1989-07-31) and in Europe on September 28, 1990 (1990-09-28). It is the first handheld console in the Game Boy line and was created by Satoru Okada and Nintendo Research & Development 1. This same team, led by Gunpei Yokoi at the time, is credited with designing the Game & Watch series as well as several popular games for the Nintendo Entertainment System. Redesigned versions were released in 1996 and 1998 in the form of Game Boy Pocket and Game Boy Light (Japan only), respectively.
The Game Boy is Nintendo’s second handheld system following the Game & Watch series introduced in 1980 and it combined features from both the Nintendo Entertainment System and Game & Watch. It was either bought as a standalone unit or bundled with the puzzle game Tetris.
During its early lifetime, the Game Boy mainly competed with Sega’s Game Gear, Atari’s Lynx, and NEC’s TurboExpress. The Game Boy beat its rivals and became a tremendous success. The Game Boy and its successor, the Game Boy Color, have sold over 118 million units worldwide. Upon the Game Boy’s release in the United States, it sold its entire shipment of one million units within a few weeks. The Game Boy and Game Boy Color were discontinued in the early 2000s in favor of the subsequent Game Boy Advance, released in 2001. It is currently the second best-selling hand-held console of all time, the Nintendo DS being the first.

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