From 1980 to 1991, Nintendo released a line of handheld games called "Game & Watch". Approximately 59 handheld electronic games were made, created by Gunpei Yokoi. They each featured a single game that could be played on an LCD screen, in addition to a clock and an alarm. Some of the titles available in Game & Watch format were games varying from Mickey Mouse to Balloon Fight as well as several Nintendo staples such as Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda, and Mario Bros..
- Silver Series (1980)
- Gold Series (1981)
- Wide Screen Series (1981)
- Multi-Screen Series (1982)
- New Wide Screen Series (1982)
- Parallel Multi-Screen Series (1983)
- Tabletop Series (1983)
- Panorama Series (1983)
- Super Color Series (1984)
- Micro Vs. Series (1984)
- Crystal Series (1986)
- Dis-kun (1987)
- Game & Watch: The Legend of Zelda (1989)
- Mini Classics (1998)
- Club Nintendo's "Ball" re release (2010)
- Game & Watch: Super Mario Bros. (2020)
- The Legend of Zelda (2021)
Game Boy Line
The Game Boy' line of handheld consoles was started with the release of the original Game Boy in 1989. In the United States, the Game Boy was a huge success, mainly due to the successful marketing of Nintendo and the packing title, Tetris.
Since then, there have been six more releases (plus one more release in Japan only) in the handheld market by Nintendo, keeping them as the leader in handheld gaming. As of late 2009, all Game Boy consoles were discontinued, though Game Boy Advance games can be played on the Nintendo DS and DS Lite.
- Game Boy (1989-1999)
- Game Boy Pocket (1996-2003)
- Game Boy Color (1998-2003)
- Game Boy Advance (2001-2009)
- Game Boy Advance SP (2002-2009)
- Game Boy Micro (2005-2009)
- Game Boy Light (1998-2003)
Nintendo Switch Line
- Nintendo Switch (2017-Present)
- Nintendo Switch Lite (2019-Present)
- Nintendo Switch (OLED model) (Announced 2021)
The Pokémon Mini was released in November 2001 in North America and then made its way to Japan a month later and then Europe in March 2002. A total of 15 games were released in the American and European market and then more games in the Japanese market. All the games that were made for it where Pokémon games hence the name of the handheld. The Pokémon mini was discontinued a year later but it still a great collectors item.
Nintendo DS Line
The Nintendo DS first came out in North America on November 21, 2004 and was the first handheld to have a main menu. Although it was a very basic console only pre-installed with PictoChat and DS Download Play, it was still a huge success. Eventually, the DS Lite came out in early 2006 and was similar to the original DS, except it was slimmer, brighter, and more attractive looking. The DS Lite still had the same Pitchochat and DS Download Play, however. In 2008, Nintendo made a huge update to the Nintendo DS line and added the DSi. They removed the Game Boy Advance slot from the older DS', but the DSi had a camera, a MP3 player/voice recorder, a shop where you can buy games, as well as the older features. It is thinner and brighter than the DS Lite. Not long after a year later. a larger model called the DSi XL (originally called Nintendo DSi LL in Japan) came out. It was a larger model of a DSi with bigger screens as well as the largest, brightest, and heaviest of the four models. Like the DSi, the Game Boy Advance slot is not there. It also came pre-installed with Brain Age, Photo Clock, Flipnote Studio, and the internet. (The internet was available on the smaller DSi except you had to get it free from the DSiWare shop) The DSi XL also features a large optional stylus, but still features the regular stylus. As of 2014, all the four models were discontinued.
- Nintendo DS (2004-2014)
- Nintendo DS Lite (2006-2014)
- Nintendo DSi (2008-2014)
- Nintendo DSi XL (2009-2014)
Nintendo 3DS Line
The Nintendo 3DS was released in 2011 and obviously features 3D. It also features some new pre-installed games like Face Raiders, and AR Games. Because of this, the Nintendo 3DS removed the older DSi XL pre-installed games, and lastly, the Nintendo 3DS features a stylus that can go longer, or shorter. Nintendo has announced the Nintendo 3DS XL (originally called 3DS LL in Japan) on June 21, 2012 and it was released on July 28, 2012, which is bigger and brighter than the previous model. In October 2013, Nintendo released a 3DS in 2D called the Nintendo 2DS. In August 2014, Nintendo released the New Nintendo 3DS, which is larger than the original 3DS and the New Nintendo 3DS XL (originally called New Nintendo 3DS LL in Japan), which is bigger and brighter than the 3DS XL and original New 3DS. In June 2017, the New Nintendo 2DS XL (originally called New Nintendo 2DS LL in Japan) was released, which is a larger version of the original 2DS. The original 3DS was discontinued in Europe on February 10, 2015, the 3DS XL was discontinued in Europe and Japan on February 2015, the New 3DS was discontinued in Japan and Europe on July 14, 2017, the New 3DS XL was discontinued in Europe on December 30, 2017 and in Japan on July 25, 2019, and the 2DS was discontinued in North America on February 8, 2020.
- Nintendo 3DS (2011-present, discontinued in Europe)
- Nintendo 3DS XL (2012-present, discontinued in Europe and Japan)
- Nintendo 2DS (2013-present, discontinued in North America)
- New Nintendo 3DS (2014-present, discontinued in Europe and Japan)
- New Nintendo 3DS XL (2014-present, discontinued in Europe and Japan)
- New Nintendo 2DS XL (2017-present)