Potatoes and video games go hand in hand. This is undeniable. And during the heyday of Nintendo’s smash hit Game Boy, one could not move for potato-based games.
As such, we’re here today to celebrate all of this retro gaming history. And you’d be starch raving mad to miss out on it all.
The Best Potato Games on the Game Boy
The demand for potato-based games was, admittedly, low back in the early 1990s. But it didn’t stop developers having a go. Starting with this humdinger!
Japanese developer Atlus Co., Ltd. was responsible for this. These days it works on major RPGs like the critically acclaimed Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne.
Back in 1991, it launched Amazing Tater.
Specifically, it launched in Japan on August 2nd, 1991. The North American release landed in February 1992. It doesn’t seem to have enjoyed a European release.
It was called Puzzle Boy II (パズルボーイII) in Japan. As you may be able to tell from that title, it’s a puzzle game. And it was the sequel to the 1989 tomato-based first game in the series called Kwirk (see also the NES’ Princess Tomato in the Salad Kingdom).
Want to see some box art!? Of course you do! And here it is.
They don’t make them like that no more.
In the game, your goal is to guide a potato to the exit of each level. Along the way, you have to overcome multiple obstacles using your cunning, guile, and (if available) genius.
Although you control a potato, the Game Boy’s limited graphical abilities mean it could really be anything you’re controlling. A football. Maybe someone’s decapitated head. The possibilities are endless.
However, the empirical and tangible evidence of Amazing Tater’s box art ensures future generations will be able to know it’s a potato.
Yeah, so the goal is to push crates, fill up holes, and manipulate rotation devices.
Add into that four gameplay modes, including an action mode with two story type options. All of which reminds us of Nintendo’s Mole Mania (1996) a bit.
The difference is Amazing Tater has potatoes, which serves the purposes of this essential feature to perfection—posterity will thank us for these actions.
Anyway, the game got half decent reviews! An 82/100 from Germany’s Power Play magazine. Clearly, the game is in need of a full HD reboot from Bethesda immediately.
Apparently, Spud’s Adventure is one of the rarest Game Boy games. That makes it a sought after retro gaming collector’s item.
But it’s also the most expensive on the Game Boy. And if you think we’re taking the piss with that claim, look at how much some of its mint condition sets are commanding on eBay.
To note, £21,000 is the average wage for employees in the UK. Although we have seen individual cartridges of the Japanese version selling starting at £45.
In Japan the title reads as 突撃ばれいしょんず (Totsugeki Bareishons—Totsugeki! Valetions). Here’s the Japanese box art, too. It launched in January 1991.
The North American release followed in June 1991. Again, the European version didn’t seem to happen. Alas! Here’s the box art for NA, though.
Spud’s Adventure is an action adventure game with RPG bits. You take control of the protagonist Spud—he wears a cap. The goal is to save Princess Mato from an evil bastard called Devi, who’s kidnapped her/it (she’s a tomato).
Devi is a satanic beetle. And, yes, it’s supposed to represent the devil. Which is why it’s called Devi (this is a kids game, remember? Keep up!) as it has the goal of taking over the Vegetable Kingdom in which the game takes place.
The developer behind this gloriously demented concept?
Atlus Co., Ltd.
Clearly, the Japanese devs thought potatoes were exactly what the Game Boy needed back in 1991. Nothing was gonna stop it.
Turns out these potato games were all part of the wider Puzzle Boy series, including 1989’s Kwirk, Puzzle Boys (1990) on the Famicom Disk System, a PC version in 1991, Spud’s Adventure, and then it all ended with Amazing Tater.
And that’s a wrap on potato-based Game Boy Games! What… you were expecting more!? What’s the matter with you?
Okay, so we only really found two potato games on the Game Boy. But aren’t you better off in life for knowing these things existed? Of course you are!
Other Noteworthy Potato-Based Video Games
Straight up, we can’t go further without mentioning the goddamn awesome that is clicker game SPACEPLAN.
It launched in 2017 and, for our money, is the best potato-based game there has ever been. And will ever be. Probably. Unless there’s a sequel, or something.
Our extensive potato research also led us to the Holy Potatoes! franchise. Behold!
We’d never heard of that before, but apparently it was a whole thing on smartphones. There are four of them:
- Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop!?
- What the Hell!?
- We’re in Space!?
- A Spy Story!?
Fascinating stuff, right? Although the series appears to be over now. The last one cropped up in 2018, so we suppose so.
We also found this smartphone game I Love Potatoes, which was the work of the National Film Board of Canada. It’s a free game for kids, with illustrations by Oscar nominee Patrick Doyon. Potatoes!
After a bit more searching, we soon found many other examples going on. Check out Zombie Potatoes, which is kind of what you think it will be.
It’s from 2014 and we’d never heard of it before. Not a hit, then. Except the graphics are fancier than you were probably expecting.
Grief, we began finding so many of them we decided to stop adding the trailers after that. Otherwise it’d just be too much of a marathon run this merry Sunday!
In summary, here’s more we came across (these are all on Steam):
- Potato Thriller (2016)
- Potatoes (launched in September 2022)
- Farmer Against Potatoes Idle (August 2022)
- Farmer’s Dynasty – Potatoes & Beets (2020)
- Where are my potatoes (July 2020)
- Brotato (September 2022)
- Lost Potato (2020)
- Potato Survival (October 2022)
- Potato Planet (2016)
- Potato Flowers in Full Bloom (2021)
- Potato Party: Hash It Out (2021, but VR headset only)
- Potatoman Seeks the Troof (2014)
- Super Potato Bruh (2018)
- Tater Spud (July 2022)
- Potato Arena (set for 2023 launch)
- Spuds Unearthed (2019, but VR only)
- Catch a Duck (2019—not a potato game, but we liked the title)
Definite and notable influx of potato-based games towards the end of 2022. For some reason. Anyone care to hazard a guess on that one?
We then went to indie game platform Itch.io and found an entirely new world of potato-based indie games. Some of these include:
- Potato, Potato!
- Potato Potato
- Electric Love Potato (a virtual desktop animation)
- Because Potatoes
- Potato game.
- Project Potato
- The Infinite Potato Complex
- Cosmic Potato Trader Simulator
- First You Take A Potato
- Potato Chaos
- Potato Wars
- Crossbow Potato
- Mr. Otto: The Strange Potato
And we’re going to stop here for SEO purposes, otherwise Google might think we’re spamming the spud word to manipulate its SERPs.
Which, Google, we’re not doing. We just wanted to honour the spud. Peace and vegetables!