7800basic

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7800basic - a Basic Compiler for the Atari 7800

7800basic is a BASIC-like language for creating Atari 7800 games. It is a compiled language that runs on a computer, and it creates a binary file that can be run with an Atari 7800 emulator, or the binary file may be used to make a cartridge that will operate on a real Atari 7800.

7800.8bitdev.org is the official home for 7800basic. Please do not re-distribute 7800basic without permission.


Download and Release Notes

Media:7800basic.0.6beta20170712.zip

   -fixed driving controller driver (tested)
   -added possible score variables: "scorea" to "scorez"

Windows OS

7800basic comes bundled with 32-bit x86 binaries for Windows. These binaries should run without problem on 64-bit versions of Windows.


Installing 7800basic

Unzip the 7800basic zip file to whichever location you desire to use. Make sure your unzip utility creates the expected subdirectories (/docs, /includes, ...) rather than sticking all of the files into one directory.

Using Windows Explorer, locate the unzip directory and double-click on the provided install_win.bat file, following the instructions presented.

If install_win.bat reports failure, you should manually set the following variables to point at your 7800basic directory.

e.g.: set basic7800dir=c:\7800basic

     set PATH=%PATH%;c:\7800basic

If you want this set permanently every time you start the Windows command prompt, you may add the two above lines to the autoexec.nt (Windows NT/2k/XP) or autoexec.bat (DOS/Windows 95/98/Me) file. autoexec.nt is typically located either in C:\WINNT\SYSTEM32 or C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32, and autoexec.bat is in the root directory. If the files don't exist, create them.

Compiling basic programs

To test your installation, several sample programs are included in the "samples" folder. "cd" to this folder and type:

 7800bas simple.bas

If successful, a file called simple.bas.a78 will be generated that you can run on an emulator. The sample program is not very interesting, but note how simple it was to write. Open sample.bas in a text editor and take a look at how it was written.


To compile other basic programs, "cd" to a folder containing your 7800basic source file and type:

 7800bas filename

where filename is the name of the BASIC source file you wish to compile. The project folder can be any folder you create to store your files.


Linux or OS X

7800basic comes bundled with 32-bit x86 binaries for both OS X and Linux. These binaries should run without problem on 64-bit versions of these OSes.

If you wish to run 7800basic on another Unix, or for a processor other than x86, you'll need to rebuild the binaries. You may wish to refer to the provided COMPILE.txt document.


Installing 7800basic

1. download and unzip the 7800basic distribution to your home directory, ensuring the directory structure in the zip is maintained. I.e. there should be "includes" and "samples" subdirectories.

2. open a terminal window, and "cd" to the unzipped 7800basic directory.

3. run the installer and follow the instructions:

./install_ux.sh


Compiling basic programs

compile your basic program using the 7800basic.sh script.

      e.g. 7800basic.sh myprogram.bas

It should produce a binary named after the basic program, but ending with the file extension ".bin".


To compile other basic programs, "cd" to a folder containing your 7800basic source file and type:

 7800basic.sh filename

where filename is the name of the BASIC source file you wish to compile. The project folder can be any folder you create to store your files.


Documentation

7800basic comes bundled with a PDF manual, and an online version of the manual is also available.

History and License

7800basic is derived from batari basic, a BASIC-like language for creating Atari 2600 games. Special thanks to the bB creator, Fred Quimby, and all of the the bB contributors!

Please see README.bB.txt for the original bB terms and contributor list.

7800basic is distributed with code that is:

  • copyright 2005-2013 by Fred Quimby
  • copyright 2013-2014 by Michael Saarna
  • copyright 2004 by Bruce Tomlin
  • copyright 1995-2014 by the zlib/libpng team. (see source for details)
  • copyright 1988-2008 by the dasm contributors. (see source for details)


7800basic is free of charge but is not in the public domain. It may not be sold for profit, nor included in any product sold for profit, without the author's prior written consent.

See the included license.txt for more information.

The license does not apply to Atari 7800 games created with 7800basic. You may license your games however you wish.