The Game Boy Advance features power that would have been unthinkable back when the original Game Boy was launched. Its 32-bit RISC CPU runs circles around the former machine's 8-bit workhorse, allowing it to process program instructions much faster. What that means to everyday gamers is more intricate visuals, more simultaneous movement on the screen, and better sound. In fact, the often-annoying bleeps and bloops of old-school Game Boy titles are being replaced with digitised stereo sound. When you first pick up the system, you'll notice how lightweight it is. It's a little less than 150 grams, but a little larger than a deck of playing cards. The GBA's wider shape fits better into a wider range of hands, and the screen is fitted with antiglare technology--you need pretty good light to play by, but you won't be craning your neck and tilting the unit to see around the reflection of the light bulb in your screen.
You'll also notice the graphics. Essentially sporting redesigned SNES technology, you'll see things on the GBA that the big consoles do, such as scaling (making objects larger or smaller) and rotation effects--technological advances that will affect the look of everything from crossing a finish line to scoring a goal to crawling through a dungeon. The extra processing muscle also means you can network up to four Game Boy Advance units together, via the communication cable, for multiplayer fun from one shared cartridge. Colours May Vary.
The new Game Boy Advance SP works essentially the same way previous Game Boy Advance models have, but adds a number of thoughtful features to the design. The most obvious difference you'll see is the lighting feature built into the screen so you can play in low-light situations without bulky external game lights that too often leave a hot spot on the screen or fail to reach the corners. You can shut off this internal light to squeeze more playing time out of the power source if you're in a situation with enough light to see the SP's reflective screen.
Speaking of power sources, the SP comes with a rechargeable lithium-ion battery that provides between 10 and 18 hours of gameplay from a three-hour charge. Also, the new clam-shell design will offer protection for the screen from scratches when it's all closed up. As well as playing all your Game Boy Advance games, the system is backward-compatible with almost all Game Boy/Game Boy Color titles. Colour may vary.