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Vlad-Stefan Harbuz
The Submodule GB01 cart reader

Submodule GB01

In 2019, a friend and I teamed up to make a cart reader for the Game Boy, Game Boy Color, and Game Boy Advance. Broadly speaking, he handled the hardware and I handled the software. Thus, the GB01 was born.

The general idea is that the GB01 is a physical device you can buy and connect to your computer. You can then connect Game Boy games to it, which allows you to interact with the original Nintendo games from your computer. We created both the device itself and the supporting firmware and desktop software.

All this allows you to download and upload ROMs and saves, to and from your original GB games. Most people use the GB01 to back up save files from the games of their childhood.

A screenshot of the GB01 app
A screenshot of the GB01 app

Another feature of the GB01 I had a lot of fun making is the Game Boy Camera support. You can connect your GB Camera to the device and download all the photos you’ve taken with it. I also wrote a feature that allows you to add filters to your photos, for a little bit of extra retro fun.

Many people used this feature to post pictures and home movies that they made using their GB Cameras to Instagram, which was really nice to see.

The camera filter feature
The camera filter feature

The GB01 was available for purchase on the Submodule website for more than 2 years, during which we received countless messages from people who enjoyed using it. Some simply dumped the games of their childhood, while others used the GB01 together with the Game Boy Camera to create photographs which have been exhibited in galleries.

We unfortunately had to discontinue the GB01 at the beginning of 2022, but its legacy lives on in the hearts of its creators and users.