Famicom Family BASIC

I love BASIC! I don’t make a secret of it. It was the product, even before DOS, that launched Microsoft. It was invented to be the language to bring programming to the masses, and, for a short time, it fulfilled that function. (These days, if you want to learn coding, I suggest Python. Not only is it a lot more capable and modern, but you can actually get a job writing it.)

Used to be if you had a new computer you wanted families to buy, you had to have a version of BASIC to ship with it. The Apple II had two, one written by Steve Wozniak himself. Right off the top of my head, computer systems with BASIC, go! Altair, Apple II, Commodore Pet, Vic-20, 64, 128, Plus-4, 16, Atari 8-bit, TRS-80, MS-DOS, Windows (Visual BASIC carried the torch for many years), and, most improbably, the Atari VCS/2600, in its BASIC Programming cartridge, an effectively useless cart for its stated purpose that’s nonetheless an excellent hack. The machine has 128 bytes of RAM, but it can still run BASIC, by jove.

The Famicom has a version of BASIC too, coming in at the end of the language’s heyday. Over on the Peertube instance diode.zone, user RE:Enthused did a two-part introduction to it that may be of interested to people who still think in terms of FOR/NEXT loops.

Let’s look at Family Basic on the Famicom, Part 1 (8 minutes) and Part 2 (17 minutes).

Identifying Luck in Mario Party 7

ZoomZike on Youtube has been working for years on a comprehensive series of videos going through all the Mario Party games, and breaking down what parts of each are a matter of luck, and how many are of skill. Along the way, they also serve as fine guides to winning at them, at least as far as you are able.

They’ve gone through the series, trending longer with each one, for each game from Mario Party 1 through 7 (with an April Fool’s stop over at Advance). Even the shortest is at least an hour, and the most recent one is over five hours. That might seem like a whole lot, but imagine how long it took to construct! These are really deep videos, often with odds figured out through exhaustive, and exhausting, trial and error.

Mario Party 7 is the last of the four Mario Party games that came out for the Gamecube, even beating out the N64 portion of the series by one game. The early MPs were notorious controller destroyers, often resulting in the dreaded white dust of death, a result of ground plastic, emerging from the controller after heavy play. The Gamecube had controllers that weren’t as susceptible to wearing out, and so were better suited for the demanding play that Mario Party provides.

Anyway, here is the video, all five hours and 25 minutes of it:

And, here is the direct link:

Identifying Luck in Mario Party 7 (Youtube, 5:15)