The Top 10 Action Games for the Game Boy Advance

Looking for a bit of action? Have the need to destroy everything in your path? Craving over-the-top, heart pounding delight, but sick of buying the latest title only to discover it’s nothing more than a lame excuse for a puzzle game? What’s a thrill seeker to do?

All 10 of these titles reflect everything we love about frantically, fast-paced gaming.

Qualifications: Must be originals, made specifically for the GBA, no ports of past titles, only one per franchise and have to be pure and total action.

With perfect graphics, stunning gameplay and non-stop action, this game. is so well put together, you’re punishing yourself by not playing it. Gunstar Super Heroes is another success from the developers at Treasure, proving they are one of the tops in the business. The action is all around you, not just to your sides or above. With 3D backgrounds, it’s also in front of and behind you. Treasure added more dimensions by adding sections that make you feel like you’re playing a 2D character in a 3D environment. This is the perfect GBA game! More »

A GBA title that outshined its console counterpart. While the dull console game bored and frustrated players, the GBA shined as one of the best action titles released. The second game on the list by game developers at Treasure, who put together an amazing combination of gameplay and story with outrageous levels. With incredible weapons, radical enemies, stunning environment, detailed character design and non-stop action packed into 41 levels, this game is a must have in any action gamers collection. More »

Klonoa: Empire of Dreams is one of the finest side-scrollers on the GBA. Here you do more than just blow things up—you have to use your brain. Each stage is designed with challenges that range from simple to complex. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll get all the entertainment you can handle. For instance, you don’t shoot your enemies, but instead you actually grab and throw them. Throw the baddie in mid-leap, and you get a super jump. It's the least violent games on the list, but it has more extreme action than most shoot-em-up titles. More »

It’s a shame that Mario, the king of platform action games, hasn’t released a new/original one for the GBA. Thank goodness his arch nemesis Wario didn't sit on the sidelines. Wario Land 4 gives us more platforming action than you can shake a cartridge at. Even better for us is that Nintendo added special features never before used in a Mario/Wario style game that make this the tops in GBA action. More »

Don’t go looking for original gameplay here. Look instead for the best of the old school, high-octane, non-stop action we have come to know and love from the Capcom Mega Man franchise—only this time, it's on steroids. It’s impossible to get bored with the extensive mission levels and explosive weaponry. You can also connect with a friend with a multi-link cable and compete in race-style challenges. Sometimes it’s just nice to go to a familiar set up with all-out thrills. More »

What Top 10 action game list would be complete without a Metroid title? Since the very first Metroid was released, the series has consistently brought home the bacon with its wall-to-wall action and thrilling gameplay. This one has all the best elements of the original series, but much more of it. As you progress your way through the game, you gain bigger and better abilities. Each one helps make this game the best way to spend a leisurely afternoon blowing the heck out of stuff. More »

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Rayman 3: Hoodlum Havoc

Here is another example of a GBA transcending a highly publicized console as an all-around better game. This bizarre character with disembodied hands and feet is ideal for the 2D handheld format. Rayman 3 pushes the limits of the GBA, with its fluid movement, amazing colors, and over fifty elaborate and outrageous levels, each full of hidden treasures. It also boasts multi-link connectivity, where you can play your friends in some great multiplayer challenges.

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Truly original and entertaining gameplay put Drill Dozer on the list by taking innovative new approaches to platforming action. As Jill, you ride around in a machine called a Drill Dozer—a cross between a robot, armor and a giant drill. Although Jill is on a noble quest, that’s not what makes this game so great; it’s the Drill. You use it to plow your way though level after level of some of the most exciting play found in a GBA original. From the makers of the ever popular Pokemon games. More »

The best Sonic title for the GBA combines the turbo speed gameplay that made the original Sonic the Hedgehog series such a success, with original features and levels. It also has some great multi-link challenges. In single player mode, you have the option of four different characters, each with very diverse capabilities. Rarely does a game have this kind of replay value, where you can complete each level dozens of times and still not catch it all. More »

The first and best Spider-Man game for the GBA with all the features that make Spidey great. There are webs, webs and more webs for shooting bad guys, along with makeshift shields and, of course, web swinging. Let’s not forget the super strength and a talent for climbing buildings—he’s not referred to as a “wall crawler” for nothing. What makes this game so terrific, in addition to the challenging, yet fun, gameplay, is the natural feel of the controls, as you web spin your way though the action. More »

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