The Game Boy Color (ゲームボーイカラー Gēmu Bōi Karā , shortened to GBC) is Nintendo's successor to the Game Boy and was released on October 21, 1998 in Japan, November 19, 1998 in North America, November 23, 1998 in Europe and November 27 1998 in UK. It features a color screen and is slightly thicker and taller than the Game Boy Pocket. As with the original Game Boy, it has an 8-bit processor, but is smaller than the original system. The Game Boy and Game Boy Color combined have sold 118.69 million units worldwide.
The Game boy color was created due to the fact that the Game Boy and its spin offs were considered insufficient by Nintendo. It was also due to game developers wishing for a more sophisticated hand-held. The resulting product was backwards compatible. This gave the system a large library from the offset, and started a trend that would be continued throughout the life of the Gameboy series.
The processor, which is a Z80 workalike made by Sharp with a few extra (bit manipulation) instructions, has a clock speed of approx. 8 MHz, twice as fast as that of the original Game Boy. The Game Boy Color also has four times as much memory as the original (32 kilobytes system RAM, 16 kilobytes video RAM). The screen resolution was the same as the original Game Boy, which is 160x144 pixels.
The Game Boy Color also featured an infrared communications port for wireless linking. However, the feature was only supported in a few games, and the infrared port was dropped for the Game Boy Advance and later releases. The console was capable of showing up to 56 different colors simultaneously on screen from its palette of 32,768, and could add basic four-color shading to games that had been developed for the original Game Boy. It could also give the sprites and backgrounds separate colors, for a total of more than four colors. This, however, resulted in graphic artifacts in certain games. For example, sometimes a sprite that was supposed to meld into the background would be colored separately, making it easily noticeable.
Games designed specifically for, and therefore only work with, the Gameboy color have clear cases. Games that also work with the original Game Boy have black cases. Some special games had unique coloring as well.
The Game Boy and Game Boy Color combined have sold 118.69 million units worldwide, with 32.47 million units in Japan, 44.06 million in the Americas, and 42.16 million in other regions.
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