Car Battler Joe

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Car Battler Joe
Car Battler Joe GBA coverart.jpg
Developer(s) Ancient
Composer(s) Yuzo Koshiro
Tomonori Hayashibe
Platform(s) Game Boy Advance
  • JP: November 30, 2001
  • NA: October 21, 2002
Wii U Virtual Console
  • NA: September 17, 2015
Genre(s) Action RPG
Vehicular combat
Mode(s) Single-player and multiplayer

Car Battler Joe (激闘!カーバトラーGO!! Gekitou! Car Battler Go!!?) is a car battling video game for the Game Boy Advance, developed by Ancient and published by Natsume. The game involves using cars to fight opponents in action-styled battles, with role-playing video game game mechanics.[1] It combined vehicular combat with action RPG elements in a similar manner to the earlier 1985 game Autoduel based on Car Wars, and later 2006 MMO game Auto Assault.[2]


The player, taking the role of 16-year-old Joe, must earn money by battling to buy parts for his car to make it stronger. The battles are fought in 16-bit Mode 7-style.


Aggregate score
Aggregator Score
Metacritic 77/100[3]
Review scores
Publication Score
EGM 7/10[4]
GamePro 4/5 stars[5]
GameSpot 8.1/10[6]
GameSpy 3/5 stars[7]
IGN 7.7/10[8]
Nintendo Life 7/10 stars[9]
Nintendo Power 4.3/5[10]

Car Battler Joe received "generally favorable reviews" according to the review aggregation website Metacritic.[3] It was well received by Nintendo Power, which called it a "one-of-a-kind adventure" due to its combination of driving challenges and "RPG depth".[10] Before it was playable, Marc Nix of IGN was excited about its premise, as well as the developer attached to it.[11] In his review, he called its gameplay "hectic" and its controls well-designed. He also enjoyed the Mode 7 graphics. However, he found the sound to be less desirable, calling it "busy" but also "lacking punch".[8] It was the 87th most anticipated game for IGN's readers as of January 3, 2003.[12]

Electronic Gaming Monthly praised the car customization, commenting that without it, it would both mediocre and not as deep.[4] GameSpot's Frank Provo called it "weird and unique", and may not suit some people's tastes. However, he found an abundance of variety and personality to it.[6] In his preview of the game, GamePro's Pong Sifu found the gameplay unique and the graphics "delightful".[13] In his review, he commented that while the story was weak and the concept unoriginal, it was "easily one of the most fun action RPGs on the portable system".[5] RPGFan's Neal Chandran found it fun and worth a shot, noting that even with its flaws, its "charm and heart" won him over.[14] GameSpy's Zach Meston called it "unexpectedly entertaining", praising its customization and music and sound effects. However, he criticized the aiming system and storyline, the latter described as "bare-minum".[7]


  1. ^ Chi Kong Lui (February 15, 2003). "Car Battler Joe - Review". GameCritics. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  2. ^ Joe Kaiser (July 8, 2005). "Unsung Innovators". Next Generation. Archived from the original on October 28, 2005. Retrieved April 2, 2010. 
  3. ^ a b "Car Battler Joe for Game Boy Advance Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  4. ^ a b EGM staff (September 2002). "Car Battler Joe". Electronic Gaming Monthly (158): 162. 
  5. ^ a b Pong Sifu (October 31, 2002). "Car Battler Joe Review for Game Boy Advance on". GamePro. Archived from the original on January 23, 2005. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  6. ^ a b Frank Provo (February 10, 2003). "Car Battler Joe Review". GameSpot. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  7. ^ a b Zach Meston (February 11, 2003). "GameSpy: Car Battler Joe". GameSpy. Archived from the original on November 20, 2005. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  8. ^ a b Marc Nix (December 13, 2002). "Car Battler Joe". IGN. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  9. ^ Jose Acosta (October 1, 2015). "Review: Car Battler Joe (Wii U eShop / GBA)". Nintendo Life. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  10. ^ a b "Car Battler Joe". Nintendo Power. 165: 158. February 2003. 
  11. ^ Marc Nix (August 8, 2001). "Car Battler GO!". IGN. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  12. ^ IGN staff (January 3, 2003). "The GBA Top 100". IGN. Archived from the original on February 23, 2004. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  13. ^ Pong Sifu (April 18, 2002). "Car Battler Joe Hands-On". GamePro. Archived from the original on January 23, 2005. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  14. ^ Neal Chandran (November 17, 2004). "Car Battler Joe". RPGFan. 

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