This one showed up on eBay of all places. The original MSRP was $49.95 USD.
Well it seems that back in the early 90’s Microsoft was transitioning their Basic offering from the QuickBASIC to Qbasic. And one of the launch products was the Microsoft Game Shop, back from 1990. This was a specialized version apparently without any compiler, but included a tutorial based around games to teach basic.
Which back in the day it looks like it would have been a good way to inspire kids, although I have never heard of it. There is even a glowing review in Compute, issue 130.
From the packing list it contains:
- QBLOCKS.BAS Fit the falling shapes into a row.
- QBRICKS.BAS Break through the bricks.
- QSPACE.BAS Defend space stations against enemy attack.
- QSHIPS.BAS Sink your opponent’s ship.
- QMAZE.BAS Find your way through the maze before time runs out.
- QSYNTH.BAS Record and play your own music.
QuickBasic went on to become the cut down QBasic that was later included in MS-DOS 5.0, Windows NT 3.1, and of course OS/2 2.00.
There may be updates later in the year as these are waiting for me on the other side of the planet. So I have to urge patience.
Who knows, maybe they will even read! The Windows/386 v2.03 I had recently ordered circa early 1988 read fine, so let’s hope these will too.