Breden's Basic (Visions) Review | Home Computing Weekly - Everygamegoing

Home Computing Weekly

Breden's Basic
By Visions
Commodore 64

Published in Home Computing Weekly #94

Visions have come up with yet another extended Basic package for the C64. For your money, you receive 1 160 page manual and the Extended Basic on both tape and disk. The idea of supplying both cassette and disc is a good way of catering for all types of system and expansion.

The language covers almost all areas of programming. Unfortunately, there are not many extra aids to machine code programmers. This may not be so important to an expert but for a beginner in this field, it would be most helpful.

The sprite graphics commands are very good. You only need to supply the computer with sprite shapes - all the POKEs and setting up of memory areas is done for you. The limitation is that you may only have 16 sprite definitions to use in eight sprites, although you may change these at any time. A sprite may be moved from one point to another on the screen by specifying its destination. The computer will then scroll it smoothly between the points. Collision detection is also handled very well.

The graphics commands go no further than drawing lines and boxes. The features such as circles, arcs, painting and drawing pre-defined shapes found in Simon's Basic are not present in Breden's Basic.

Full control over sound is given, it is even possible to play chords quite easily. The nice thing about the sound commands is that they take away all of the cumbersome POKEs that are normally required and so make listings more legible.

The extra I/O commands for reading the keyboard, joysticks and paddles seem to be quite a waste of time. They all have well known single PEEK/POKE equivalents. Using the Breden's Basic commands here only makes your programs incompatible with a standard C64.

Programmers aids supply find, delete, memory load and save, old and function key commands along with some others which are not needed.

The enhanced programming structures provide good commands which make general programming easier and more structured.

In conclusion, I will say that Breden's Basic has some good features but these are cancelled out by about half of the commands being unnecessary and serving no real purpose. Surely an extended Basic should allow the programmer to do new things, not already existing ones in a different way.