The Goodboy Galaxy team has released their debut game, Goodboy Galaxy for Game Boy
Advance. Alongside the GBA version, its also being released for Evercade, with PC and Nintendo Switch version coming out next year. Digital version of GBA game is avilable now for $20, together with Evercade release. Physical GBA cartridges will ship this winter.
GBA Digital: https://goodboygalaxy.itch.io/goodboy-galaxy-gba
GBA Cartridge: https://firstpressgames.com/collections/goodboy-galaxy
Steam (coming soon): https://store.steampowered.com/app/2705890/Goodboy_Galaxy/
Goodboy Galaxy is a new metroidvania-style game for GBA, which has been in developement for the last 4 years by Jeremy Clarke and Rik Nicol. A crowdfunding campaign for it was launched back in 2021, together with the release of Goodboy Galaxy Chapter Zero, which is also a prologue. You can still play the prologue for free, available on their itch.io. Main game continues directly after the prologue. Prologue as well as full game are available in Arabic, English, Spanish, German, French, Japanese, Brazilian Portuguese and Simplified Chinese.
You play as Maxwell, a dog from the Canis Major system, looking for a way to save your homeworld. During your adventure you get to make various friends and even get to play several mini-games, if you wish to do so. Every level is a planet, so the levels always wrap around and even up and down. So if you keep going in one direction long enough, left, right, up or down, eventually you’ll get back where you start. But thats easier said than done, because of the gating mechanic, which always takes away one of your powers, regenerative shield, jetpack or gun. Because of this, some of the areas are tricky to reach, since you will often use a different path than the one where you first discover them.
Right now, you can play the game one of two ways, on an Evercade Goodboy Galaxy/Witch n’ Wiz combo cartridge or by downloading digital GBA version from itch.io. The GBA version has been tested on various emulators, from mGBA, MiSTer and Pizza Boy GBA to even less accurate ones like NO$GBA and gpSP, to assure players will have a nice experience on as many emulators as possible. In addition to that, the game features a rumble support, which works on emulators like mGBA, SkyEmu, MiSTer, Analogue Pocket, Game Boy Player and probably some more, as well as supported flash cartridges, such as the EZ Flash Omega DE and InsideGadget’s GBA 32MB, 256Kbit FRAM[with Gyro+Rumble or optional Rumble]. If you plan to use the Spiritualized GBA core on Analogue Pocket, you can use a Rumble cartridge, to achieve rumble without a flash cart but you will also need to edit the ROM header, for it to pretend to be Drill Dozer.
If you don’t want to any of that and just want a cartridge for your GBA[or compatible NDS], you can currently pre-order one of the many physical editions from First Press Games. All of these are planned to ship this winter. If you are interested in one of these, there are 3 tiers available: Regular Edition, Limited Edition, and Collectors Edition. Each one of these editions is available in 3 regional variants: European, North American, and Japanese.
Both European and North American editions will have everything in English, while Japanese will have everything in Japanese, like manual, comics and CD. The cartridge in every edition is multilingual. All regional variants have the same price only differing editions, 54,99€ for Regular Edition, 79,99€ for Limited Edition, and 99,99€ for Collectors edition. Every edition comes GBA cartridge, case for the cartridge, full color 52-page manual, sticker sheet and a collectible coin. The game has a support for optional rumble which is fully compatible with the Game Boy Player, however none of the cartidges come with rumble motor due to cost and QA difficulties. If you are interested in playing with cartridge rumble, check out the EZ Flash and insideGadgets links mentioned previously.
Limited Edition comes with a red translucent cartridge shell, CD soundtrack, slipcase for the game box and CD, iron-on patches, doming stickers, additional sticker sheet, mini artbook and everything else also in Regular Edition. Collectors Edition includes all of that and also a Maxwell plushie, yet another A4 sticker sheet[total 4 different sticker sheets], double sided A2 poster, clear file and comic book, all housed in a boxset. Apart the language difference between Japanese and EU/NA variants, all 3 regional variants have different box art, manual cover art, poster, clear file, and in the case of Japanese variant a different boxset art.
If this is all seems like too much for you but you would still like something physical with the digital game, the Maxwell plushie is available on its own for 21,99€ and CD soundtrack for 24,99€. And who knows, maybe there will be another soundtrack release on the future? Maybe on vinyl? After all, cassettes are an in-game collectible[did I mention there is also a music player in-game? You can play back all the cassettes you collect in-game]. And while we are at the topic of music, for additional $10 for the digital release, total of $30 you’ll get an arranged soundtrack on mp3 and Starbi Daytrip Cassettedisk with 3 tracks, that you can play on your GBA, just like Remute’s Unite album.
If you’d rather wait for the PC or Nintendo Switch release, then you might want to slightly reconsider, as this is going to be a slightly different game. The GBA release will come with a special Cropett’s Past mission, while the enhanced PC/Switch releases will instead come with the Co-Op Mission. Neither the release date nor the price for the PC and Nintendo Switch version have been determined yet but they are expected to be released sometime in 2024. Switch version will be available on a physical cartridge as well.
Speaking of next year, we will also see a release of a music video by in-game super star Starbi. With all this said, the cherry on top of this will be the release if the game’s engine and open sourced, together with tutorial for aspring GBA developers and homebrewers. The game was made with lots of love and it really shows. There have already been glowing reviews, a written review by Damien McFerran from Time Extension, and a podcast episode by New Game Old Flame dedicating an entire 2 hour episode to Goodboy Galaxy.