The Family Computer, in Japanese (ファミリーコンピュータ Famiri Konpyuta), but better known as the Famicom (ファミコン Famikon), is a third generation video game console developed by Nintendo and sold in Japan from 1983-07-15 to 2003-09-25 and serviced until 2007-10-31. The Famicom was re-engineered for markets outside of the Asian region as the Nintendo Entertainment System and, specifically to South Korea, as the Hyundai Comboy (현대 컴보이 Hyeondae Keomboi).
The Famicom uses a Ricoh 2A03 processor, which is a MOS 6502 modified to eliminate decimal mode (to avoid licensing issues) and include a custom audio processing unit. It also uses a custom video processing chip called the Picture Processing Unit.
I do not own and have never played a real-life Famicom, but I have played a lot of games through emulators.
Differences Between the Famicom and NES
The differences between the two consoles are notable enough that I have separate pages for each.
- The Famicom console was considerably smaller than the NES.
- The Famicom controllers are smaller than the those for the NES.
- The console's two controllers were wired into the main unit for the Famicom, while they are removable on the NES.
- The second-player controller lacks a start and select button and instead features a speaker and microphone, however, very few games used them.
- Famicom game cartridges used a top-loader design while the NES used a spring-loaded insert design.
- Famicom cartridges were smaller and had fewer connection pins.
- Famicom game boxes were originally designed wider than taller, the opposite of NES boxes.
- The Famicom did not feature the special lock-out chip of the NES.
- See all Famicom Games.
These are the Famicom games that are both important to me and distinct enough from their American release to mention:
I don't really know enough about the console to warrant a review at this time.