The Game Boy was a groundbreaking device when it debuted over thirty years ago, and is still influencing the design of similar devices even today. But while the Lame Boy looks like a very deliberate knock-off of the handheld, it’s actually a cleverly designed dart blaster that anyone with a 3D printer, and some basic making skills, can build themselves.
It was created by the people behind an Etsy shop called BoBoInnovation, who currently sell a handful of custom, but more traditionally designed, dart blasters, as well as accessories and upgrades for Dart Zone’s enthusiast offerings. The Lame Boy—a name we vehemently disagree on—is a self-contained dart blaster that from afar could be easily mistaken for the original Game Boy, right down to the green screen.
Even when viewed up close, it’s apparent that BoBoInnovation has clearly done a lot of work to recreate all the nooks and crannies of the original Game Boy’s outer shell for the Lame Boy, but this handheld doesn’t play any games. It does have cartridges, however, which serve as both the Lame Boy blaster’s magazines and barrels, with two shortened darts inserted into each one.
You can prime the (spring-loaded) Lame Boy by pulling back a cut-out section on the bottom of the blaster near a faux set of Start and Select buttons, which extends a pair of internal plungers. You then fire the darts by either pressing left on the Lame Boy’s directional pad, or the right action button. The blaster even has swappable screens featuring recreations of popular Game Boy titles, with certain elements that pop-up to become sights for aiming.
Unfortunately, BoBoInnovation doesn’t sell finished versions of the Lame Boy blaster, presumably to keep Nintendo’s lawyers at bay. Instead, for around $20, you can buy all the files and plans you need to 3D print and build your own. In addition to filament, you’ll also need to bring your own springs to complete the Lame Boy, but those are easy to find online. No other proprietary hardware is required—aside from a 3D printer.