Monday, May 27, 2013

His name is Noobow and I want his game

While perusing the SCROLL magazine blog this past weekend, I came across the following video of a rather obscure Japanese GameBoy title called Noobow (Nu-Bo is another possibility).

As you're made well aware during the video's first few seconds, Noobow was produced by the always able folks at Irem and released in 1992.

Although Noobow's protagonist is big and slow and even a bit creepy, I can't help but want a copy of it anyway due to its intriguing combination of platforming and puzzle elements.



Another reason I've added Noobow to my lengthy "wish list" of import-only GameBoy titles: its bright yellow box art, which features the titular character sticking out his tongue at all who come across it.

Unfortunately, I doubt I'm going to find a copy--complete-in-box or otherwise--anytime soon, so I'll probably have to content myself by watching the video above for some time to come.

15 comments:

Tinpot Gamer said...

This looks lovely. I'm sure there would be a bit of moaning about the slightly un-smooth walking animation but I like it. I'm sure it would do well with a conversion to 8-bit computer if someone had the time and talent.

Nightmare Bruce said...

Damn good music for a GameBoy! I'm always surprised when Irem makes a game that isn't a serious shootemup, but then I think of Hammerin' Harry and remember that they had great range.



It's also cool when you can see the work of sprite artists who went on to form Nazca and make Metal Slug (most obvious in In The Hunt).

Alois_Wittwer said...

Good to see Noobow getting more love. Wonderful game.

I was going to write a big ol' piece for nightmaremode about it but the place has been quiet for a while. I have so much to talk abuot regarding Noobow.

michaelstearns said...

Wow, what a strange character! That slow walking speed would totally kill it for me, but they do seem to keep the puzzles pretty well contained so it doesn't look like there would necessarily be a lot of back-and-forth (not as far as I watched anyway). Looks pretty well designed!

Correct pronunciation btw would be Nu-Bo, even though it isn't spelled that way. Also, here's a doughnut shaped like him hugging the earth with a hole in it. What a guy! http://bellplan.com/collagen_noobow.html

sharc said...

hey, this is a neat one. it's definitely made for kids, but noobow is a pleasant little game, and probably the most nicest thing about it is the way everything is done without any tutorial text and the game trusts you can use simple visual cues to work everything out.

anyway, it's neither rare nor expensive, but unfortunately the hardest part of finding it via ebay will be cooking up a search filter that will catch all the permutations of the name. especially now that wildcards are no longer supported in search strings. >:C

some advice; i got bit by the game boy collecting bug a while back, and the answer is get used to being very patient, or find a way to bid on yahoo japan. gb imports are awful thin on the ground and can be hard to find, even though everything other than trip world should be cheap.

Steve Pixel said...

This is real cute; I love the character designs. Too bad they didn't make a Noobow for the Super Famicom; I bet it would look great in color.

thegaygamer.com said...

I've played In the Hunt before, but only the arcade game. I was drawn to it because it reminded me of that old Famicom game, Sqoon--only better looking.


Never played Gunforce, though!

thegaygamer.com said...

Really, Alois? Like what? I want to hear what you have to say about Noobow!

thegaygamer.com said...

Yes, I thought that, too, about the pronunciation of the title, Michael--although, admittedly, I'm still very early on in my Japanese studies.


Why do you think people translate it to Noobow, though? I can understand the "Noo" part, I guess, but not really the "bow" part.

thegaygamer.com said...

Thanks for the advice, sharc! I'm definitely finding searching for this game via ebay to be challenging so far. You never know how someone is going to word the name/title!


As for using Yahoo Japan Auctions--I don't mind that for larger items, but I don't really want to do it for games at this point. Maybe someday down the road. For now, using ebay and a few random online Japanese game shops is working for me, especially as long as I'm patient.

thegaygamer.com said...

Oh, yeah, a Noobow game for Super Fami would have been great! Now I'm going to be sad such a thing doesn't exist.

michaelstearns said...

It looks like Noobow is how the Japanese spell it (it appears in "English" on other Noobow products). Sometimes they take just create an arbitrary romanization. I think they just like the way it looks, or gives it a more exotic feel. In this case it was already ambiguous, like bow (as in "take a bow") and bow (as in "bow and arrow"), but I've seen some weird ones like

thegaygamer.com said...

Ah, that's interesting, Michael. I didn't realize Noobow basically was an 'official' translation/localization of the name!

Alois_Wittwer said...

I need to write the article :p !

thegaygamer.com said...

Get to it, Alois! :)