The Nintendo Family Computer is the Japanese version (which at release was readily available only in Asia) of the NES available in the United States. Or rather, the NES available to the United States is the American version of the Family Computer.

Also known as the Famicom, it was originally introduced in Japan in July of 1983 with a red and white console casing, with top loading cartridges and two controller pads (non-detachable from the system). The two controller pads (labeled A and B) are red and gold. Both have a multi-directional (UP DOWN LEFT RIGHT) pad on the left, and A and B buttons on the right. The A, or player one, controller has two additional buttons, START and SELECT. Unlike the NES system, which is played from the television on channel 3, Famicom uses channel 13.

With the Famicom and the NES, the video game industry took a giant leap. The success of these consoles was directly related to the availability of games playable on them. Nearly 1200 games were released for the Famicom. Games from the NES are playable on the famicom with use of an adapter, but the most amazing thing about the famicom is the game cartridges. Many game cartridges hold more than one game, and often you are able to play 50 different games from one cartridge. I have owned cartridges with varying numbers of games on them, from 1 to 50. It is possible that there were cartridges available with more than 50 games.

Some of my favorites, all with choppy and pixelated graphics: Yie-Ar Kung Fu, the original Super Mario Brothers, Mappy, Balloon Race, Bubble Bobble, Duck Hunt, the original Lode Runner, the original Bomberman, Z-3, Galaga, and more!

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