Image: @Doctor_Cupcakes

The video game YouTuber and documentarian Liam Robertson (@Doctor_Cupcakes) has published a new video on his channel showcasing the functionality of the cancelled productivity-based Game Boy add-on, The WorkBoy.

The Washington-based company Fabtek was manufacturing the device for Nintendo back in the early 1990s based on a design from UK developer Source Research and Development. But, despite receiving positive coverage in Nintendo Power and Game Zone, it never saw the light of day and was presumed lost forever.

That was until an episode of Game History Secrets, uploaded in December 2020, revealed that Robertson had acquired a prototype of the device that Fabtek founder Frank Ballouz had lying around and that, together with some files from the Nintendo Gigaleak, they had managed to get it up and running again.

This new video, which was uploaded only a few days ago, demonstrates some of the device's software features, including its clock application, calculator, address book, and calendar. It also shows off the mini-translator, world map function, several conversion apps, and an in-built money management helper. The device could also be used to do something called "phreaking", which involves using third-party devices to autodial different numbers for free.

Something we find fascinating about this add-on is just how much of a time capsule it is. The device was pre-Euro, so features references to the Deutsche Mark, Lira, and Peseta, three currencies that have since bitten the dust. It also has a converter between metric and imperial, which as Robertson notes would have been "more current" back when the device was invented, as some businesses started to switch between the two.

We recommend checking out the video in full to see the WorkBoy in all its glory. Also, if you want to support Robertson's work, they have a Patreon, where they frequently post their videos in advance of going on YouTube.

What do you think of this device? Would you have found it useful

[source, via]