The Super Game Boy is a special adapter cartridge designed for use with the Super Nintendo Entertainment System that was released in 1994. It allows players to play Game Boy games on their television screen through their Super Nintendo. It can also play Game Boy Color games, but only ones that are compatible with the original Game Boy.
As the dimensions of the Game Boy's screen are different from those of most televisions, a border is needed on the screen. Certain games, mostly ones that came out around or after the time the Super Game Boy was released, such as Donkey Kong, take advantage of the Super Game Boy, and display customized borders when played. Many games also allow for enhanced sound effects when played on the Super Game Boy.
Certain games, such as Wario Blast: Featuring Bomberman!, take additional advantage of the Super Game Boy, and allow for multi-player with a second controller. One flaw of the Super Game Boy is that it is incapable of linking up with other Game Boys or a Game Boy Printer.
By pressing the L and R buttons on the controller, the Super Game Boy menu can be brought up, allowing the player to alter the border or the controller's button mapping. The player can also assign a color palette to the game, as detailed in the section below.
If the player were to leave a game on the Super Game Boy sitting for a few minutes, screen saver-like animation would come from the screen border. Notably, Mario, Princess Toadstool, and Luigi appear in one of these border animations. Mario will come spinning up the lowest window and stand on top of it, wait long enough and he will fall asleep. While he is asleep, Peach will appear out the window. Mario wakes up but misses peach instead to have a race car drive out and spin him around, a spaceship that looks almost identical to the ones in the background of the Muda Kingdom of Super Mario Land only much smaller circles Mario. After each event Mario wakes up and then eventually falls asleep again. The animation ends with Luigi coming down from the top window on a rope and pulling Mario back up with him.
Although there was no proper method of playing Game Boy or Game Boy Color games on the Nintendo 64, in 2003, Nintendo released the Game Boy Player accessory for the GameCube, which can play almost all Game Boy, Game Boy Color and Game Boy Advance games. However, games that are enhanced by the Super Game Boy will not be enhanced when played on a Game Boy Player.
The main feature of the Super Game Boy is to give the games color. While SGB Enhanced games come with their own special colors, players can assign their own colors by accessing either the Color Palette Window or the Custom Color Window. The Color Palette Window allows the player choose one of 32 different system color palettes, while the Custom Color Window let's the player adjust the color palette available. A password system at the top of the Custom Color Window saves the changes to the color palette. Pressing the X button during gameplay will switch between the game's default color palette and any other color palette the player has selected or created.
The following images showcase all 32 of the Super Game Boy's stored color palettes from the Color Palette Window, as well as the accompanying passwords as displayed in the Custom Color Window. The Super Mario Land title screen has been chosen to model these palettes.