Gamers called out Hyperkin on Wednesday for their obvious April Fools’ Day prank: an iPhone accessory that allows gamers to plug in and play their beloved Game Boy Color games, complete with a cartridge bay and familiar-looking button layout. It was tentatively called the Smart Boy, an obvious play on a smartphone/Game Boy Color hybrid. Although Hyperkin acknowledged that the idea was an April Fools’ Day joke, the company was also trying to see if fans would be interested in such an accessory. The answer was a resounding yes.
In response, Hyperkin announced that they’re making the Smart Boy a real item. The Smart Boy mockup posted this week boasts a familiar Game Boy Color layout, with a D-Pad, two action buttons, and the classic Start and Select buttons. While outfitted with an authentic Nintendo design, the Smart Boy draws power from the phone itself, giving gamers 5 hours of play time on a full charge.
With Nintendo itself moving towards smartphones and tablets, Hyperkin may have stiff competition if they start introducing old games onto the smartphone market. However, this isn’t Hyperkin’s first rodeo. In the past, Hyperkin produced items like the Retron 5 console, which is capable of playing Game Boy Advance, SNES, NES, Genesis and Famecom games on one system. Given Hyperkin’s background with hybrid consoles, it’s not surprising that the Smart Boy sounded like a good idea to the manufacturer.
The developers at Hyperkin were overwhelmed by the Smart Boy’s positive response, and made the decision to go ahead with the project shortly after their mockup went viral. As they revealed:
A lot of you were speculating that the Smart Boy is an April Fools’ Joke. Well, it sort of was. We ‘leaked’ it with the initial intent of testing the market, seeing whether or not it should be something we’d actually make, under the guise of an April Fools’ Joke. Looks like you awesome folks ACTUALLY WANT IT, so the Smart Boy is now in development! Thank you all for your enthusiastic responses!
Since the iOS Marketplace doesn’t allow unlicensed console emulators, this will allow Hyperkin to access a very specific subset of nostalgic gamers. Hyperkin has stated that, while the Smart Boy has only been announced for the iPhone 6 Plus, they’re looking into producing the accessory for other mobile phones.
What do you think about the Smart Boy, Ranters? Would you like to get your hands on one?