Nintendo DS vs. Game Boy Advance: which do you prefer?

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Which did you prefer?

Nintendo DS 22 70.97%
Game Boy Advance 9 29.03%

Because I really spent a lot of my early gaming years with the GBA, I'll go with GBA. And most of the games hold up visually still today while the blurry textures and god awful polygons of the DS don't really stand the test of time. And like others have mentioned, it's backwards compatible with GB and GBC games which are among my favorite games as well. That's not to say that the DS didn't have a crap ton of amazing games because it did, but I don't personally find myself wanting to play a DS game ever now and then.

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DS. For its time, I always felt the GBA was a bit underpowered and never really impressed. Especially the model with no backlight.

The DS (though still underpowered compared to the PSP) constantly surprised me with its library and what they were able to accomplish with the hardware.

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Darwinianevolution said:
Both are stellar systems, but the DS can play GBA games, so there's that.

Right. So, really, DS enjoys most of the positives of the GBA, while having its own awesomeness.  IMO, DS wins by a mile, largely because of this fact.  

I played the GBA in high school, and it was one of the systems that really got me into gaming, so I'm a bit biased. I also never owned a Super Nintendo, and so this system was a treasure trove of amazing experiences. Stuff like Fire Emblem, Golden Sun, Final Fantasy Tactics, and the Dragonball Z Legacy of Goku games really made this one of my favorite platforms ever.

The DS was also great, but unfortunately its best years were while I was in college and beginning my career, and so it didn't get as much love as it should have. Had some nice memories on it, but honestly I probably used the GBC backwards compatibility just as much as I played actual DS games...so that's another point for the GBA there.

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While the GBA was my first gaming system ever, I can't say most of the games I played were exactly stellar experiences. I do have an immense background of memories from this thing but in the end, the DS ended up having the better librairy.

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DS for me. The 2 screens just made for an overall better experience, and it's also the system that everyone around me had, so it was great for multiplayer games like Mario Kart DS. And I didn't need that stupid cable either, so 4 or 5 people could play at once. Honestly, it felt like a huge step forward in a way that the GBA just didn't.

Also, there's the sheer volume of that game library. To this day, I still have a huge backlog of DS games. This system seriously has something for everyone.

Can't comment on them since I haven't played either much, however I will say that it's actually kind of surprising how huge DS's library of acclaimed games is compared to GBA.

DS, but for a different reason than most.
The GBA arguably has a slightly better library for me.
ALL them SNES ports and sucessirs are just wonderful, and arguably beats out the ds's own offerings of the same type. Perfected 2d beats rudimentary 3d. (Aka SNES better thann n64)

That being said, the DS is no slouch. Pokemon was in it's absolute peak on the DS in opinion. Days of ruin is arguably the best AW title.

But all in all what matters in the BC. Gb and GBC BC does NOTHING to me. Pokemon? Heh, rather play let's go over RBY. Or more likely FRLG.

So the DS just dies everything GBA can but also more.

Last edited by TheBraveGallade - on 31 December 2018

GBA SP is the best handheld of all time.

Since I love Point'nClick games, Visual Novels and anything similar with a nice story and/or good puzzles: the DS hands down.


  • 4 awesome Professor Layton games
  • 6 Ace Attorney games (AAI2 needed a translation patch)
  • 4 CING games (Hotel Dusk, Last Window, Another Code, Again)
  • Ghost Trick
  • Broken Sword: Director's Cut
  • Captain Morgane
  • Flower Sun and Rain
  • Secret Files 1 + 2
  • Runaway 1 - 3
  • Scribblenauts + Super Scribblenauts
  • So Blonde: Back to the Island
  • Syberia
  • Time Hollow
  • 999: Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors
  • some Nancy Drew games
  • some Sherlock Holmes games
  • a bad port of Broken Sword
  • Nancy Drew 3
  • ???