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Nintendo Family Computer Disk System

Console: Nintendo Famicom Disk System
Year: 1986
RFG ID#: J-093-H-00030-A
Region: Japan Japan
Part Number: HVC-022
UPC: T4902370500042
Manufacturer: Nintendo
Class: System
Subclass: Console Expansion
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Collection Stats

  • 46 of 7593 collectors (0.6%) have this hardware piece in their collection
  • 5 of 7593 collectors (0.1%) have this hardware piece in their wishlist.
  • 1 of 7593 collectors (0%) have this hardware piece for sale or trade.

Console Region Type Title Manufacturer Year Class
Nintendo Famicom Disk System
Hong Kong
H Nintendo Family Computer Disk System Nintendo 1989 System

The Famicom Disk System (FDS for short) was released on February 22, 1986 as an expansion for the Famicom system. The FDS was devised in response to then-high ROM prices, which caused cartridge prices to go up in response. Disks were cheaper to produce than cartridges, and (at the time) could hold more than a standard cartridge. In addition, disks could also save a player's progress without the need for passwords or expensive battery backup.

The FDS used slightly modified 3" QuickDisks called Disk Cards, which were originally devised by Mitsumi in the mid-1980s as a response to the 3.5" floppy disk. However, unlike 3.5" floppies, most Disk Cards did not have a shutter, allowing the magnetic disk inside to be damaged to the point of being unreadable.

One problem that contributed to the FDS's failure was the fact that the drive belt was susceptible to breaking, causing an expensive repair job. However, another major problem for the FDS was disk pirating. With the right technical know-how, anyone could copy games, allowing for many pirated and unlicensed games to flood the marketplace. By around 1988, ROM prices had dropped, and Nintendo discontinued the FDS later that year, although they continued to support it until 2004 (!).

Failure (both mechanically and economically) aside, the FDS is worth owning. Many great classics, such as the Metroid, Zelda, Castlevania, and Kid Icarus series got their start on the FDS, and most of these games benefit from the FDS's expanded capabilities, such as better music and a save feature. Other good games for the FDS include Super Mario Bros. 2 (known as The Lost Levels outside of Japan), Ai Senshi Nicol, Falsion, and Vs. Excitebike.

Extra Media

Disk System w/Famicom SystemInsert 1
Insert 2

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Nintendo Family Computer Disk System  Box Front 200px
Box Front Image

Nintendo Family Computer Disk System  Box Back 200px
Box Back Image

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