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Family Bits


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Around 2012 or 2013 I had a two dreams. One was to collect all of the unlicensed software available for the Famicom, and the other was to write and publish a comprehensive book about  all of the unlicensed games coming out of Taiwan. I've been close to achieving the collection goal for years, and I'm at the point where I am happy with my collection as it is, despite the fact that I am missing maybe 35 or so cartridges from achieving that goal. With the book goal, I changed scope and focus a lot over the years, but that project is also nearing its end, with the creation of a two-volume series of books known as Family Bits.

What is Family Bits?

Family Bits is an approximately one-thousand (1000) page book discussing primarily unauthorized software on the Famicom, though it also delves into related themes. The first volume of the book is quite close to completion (I am currently playing through the games and taking screenshots, and then I will go back and give everything a second read, allowing me to then add additional information where possible), and the second volume is easily sitting at about 60 - 75% complete. Due to the large size of the book, I felt it necessary to divide it into two sections. Although I don't have plans for a third volume, anything is possible. If Family Bits turns out to be well-received, then I might undertake a similar project for all of the original software for the Game Boy, developed here in Taiwan, for the Sega Mega Drive (Genesis), etc.


Here is my rough sketch for the content to be contained within both volumes of the Family Bits series. As I finalize everything though, some moving around might be done.


Volume 1:
-Unlicensed Original Games
-Rumor Mill and Unreleased Games
-Homebrew and Indie Games of Today
-Vintage Company Advertisements
-Interviews and Articles
-Box Art Gallery

Volume 2:
-Waixing Games
-Nanjing Games
-Jncota Games
-Famicom Disk System to Famicom Cartridge Conversions (unofficial)
-NES Exclusives Released on the Famicom (unofficial)
-North American Versions Released on the Famicom (unofficial)
-Unofficial Translations
-Game Hacks
-Famiclones (A Brief OVerview)


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30 minutes ago, MachineCode said:

Sounds awesome, but you might wanna think about the name a little more. It kinda sounds like a euphemism for one’s nether regions.

Maybe it partially is 😉

I'll be posting some tidbits in here later, but I think you guys will be shocked by the relationships all these companies (even licensed companies) had with the bootleggers. Definitely not an innocent relationship, haha. 

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