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Dexterity – Game Boy

Dexterity – Game Boy

dx1

Platform: Nintendo Game Boy

Developer: SNK Playmore

Publisher: SNK Playmore

Release Date (NA): June 15, 1990

Genre: Puzzle/Maze

Nerd Rating: 9/10

And now for something completely different! More specifically, insignificant Game Boy puzzle games! Admit it. On car rides, at annoying relative’s houses, on the toilet. You at one point have loved the insignificant puzzle game: Tetris, Bejeweled, Sudoku, (that’s right, freaking Sudoku video games!) But how about insignificant insignificant puzzle games? No, I’m not an Oscar-hungry Leo DiCaprio taking you to Inceptionland, but instead, I’m here to talk about a peculiar game I played a lot as a child, Dexterity!

The Japanese version of Dexterity. Huh. This game is pretty Funny. But not in a "ha ha" way.

The Japanese version of Dexterity. Huh. This game is pretty Funny. But not in a “ha ha” way.

Now for some background. It was the Summer of 2002. Six year old me was sitting around, sipping some cool, refreshing, CapriSun. I, like any good kid, was hanging out with my grandma at my uncle’s house, when suddenly, I stumbled upon a gray container. Inside were Game Boy games, including this odd product. Luckily for me, my Uncle just gave them to me, and also luckily for me, I had recently gotten a Game Boy! This game, funny enough, was one of the first games that sparked my interest for whatever reason. Its probably the really strange box art. I didn’t really know what to expect then, and booting it up now, I still didn’t know what to expect.

The ghosts always used to scare me 0_0. They're so...happy.

The ghosts always used to scare me 0_0. They’re so…happy.

Dexterity is an interesting product with very little actual background surrounding it. The first glances Google really gives you at the game lead you to barren Wikipedia articles and short descriptions of this weird “game.” So how do I suppose I go about reviewing this game then without being too succinct? Well, strap on your seat belts fellow baconeers, because Nerd Bacon’s resident weirdo has you covered!

Let’s start with something we can’t even be sure exists, the game’s story! Now, this is an epic tale of some kid walking across tiles, attempting to change them all to different colors, all the while trying to avoid spiders and ghosts who change the tiles back! And…that’s it! And in that epic brand of storytelling, I also just gave away the entirety of the gameplay. Whenever you fill up all the tiles, you go on to the next “round” with more enemies and a greater challenge, and repeat that process until you “beat the game.” There are thirty rounds in total, and this simple idea actually presents some fun and challenge to your gaming heart. (Y’know, the one to the left of your regular heart.)

Uh oh! You died! (Cue cool sound effect)

Uh oh! You died! (Cue cool sound effect)

Although not too much changes from round to round, the overall challenge and fun really holds the player into the game, as it serves its purpose as a true “time waster.” Reminding me of those often terrible Tiger Electronics handheld games, this game actually comes off as functional. Even though the gameplay feels as though its been recycled, it hasn’t. The overall elements, although simple, were only really associated with this game, and although shallow and lacking anything else, this game serves its purpose.

Dexterity also succeeds in areas it really didn’t have to, such as the look and the feel of the overall game. Not only does it look and play rather smoothly, that theme music is one of the catchiest tunes I’ve ever heard associated with a game. Though perhaps not rivaling Tetris, the music does come off as quite the ear worm, one that you’ll be humming throughout your meaningless day at work. The game is colorful, interesting, weird, but most of all fun and addictive.

While not making much of an impact on its generation, Dexterity is able to be an addictive experience, albeit simple and maybe not as sophisticated as something like Tetris. A good time waster, the game is still fun to come back to for a trip to the bathroom, aunt’s house, or just on the couch as an escape from your day. While perhaps being tedious, dull, and simple sometimes, the experience the game gave off was satisfying. My overall rating for this game will be a Nerd Rating of a 9/10. Its an excellent game for its time and genre that still holds up to this day.

Written by JMSutherland

J.M. is a traditionalistic writer with a love of video games and storytelling. Born and bred in the heart of Southern Arizona, J.M. grew up on stories around campfires and old cowboy tales. He was also brought up on PlayStation and Nintendo and has high regard for video games as not only gameplay driven experiences, but as the most effective storytelling medium to boot. A study in all things gaming, J.M. considers himself a “video game historian,” knowing everything there is to know about the industry and the history of said industry as well.

When he’s not writing reviews and gaming, J.M. enjoys comics, classic movies, pro wrestling, and generally being a cynical, critical mind. He is also a published poet and lover of fiction writing, so you may find him crafting novels, short stories, and poetry as well.

If any readers have any questions for J.M. please direct them at:

Sutherlandjm516@gmail.com

 
 

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2 Comments

  1. I need it! Thanks for making me aware this game exists!

     
  2. what a weird and interesting game! This is totally up my alley

     

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