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PC Reviews: Pure Basic (Standard)

"PureBasic is one of the most powerful and easy to use programming languages around!"

When computing first started, one of the first languages available to both the home and commercial user was BASIC that is not only still used today but has spawned a variety of different versions. PureBasic was created by French software developers Fantasisie Software that allows programmers to program in not only Windows but also older operating systems such as the Amiga and even Linux. One of the most popular versions of BASIC on the market at the moment is VisualBasic that is distributed by Microsoft but PureBasic is virtually identical (albeit easier to use) and caters for both the novice and professional programmer.

My first experience of BASIC was on the Commodore 64 and the first program I ever wrote (which I'm sure many of you have done the same) was;

10 print "HELLO!"
20 goto 10


This would basically repeat the word "HELLO!" till someone stopped the program but you get how easy the programming language was to use. I then moved onto some more professional  projects and even created my own BASIC game thanks to some gaming manuals. Programming has come along way since then and after using both VisualBasic and PureBasic, I must admit that the differences are quite miniscule. The main thing that you will notice with PureBasic, depending on your computer configuration is how fast PureBasic compiles your program. As VisualBasic is very resource hungry, PureBasic hardly touches my computers resources whenever it is compiling a program.

The main features of PureBasic

   - Huge set of internal commands (600+) to quickly and easily build any application or
   - All BASIC keywords are supported
   - Very fast
compiler which creates highly optimized executables
   - No external DLLs, runtime interpreter or anything else required when creating
   - Procedure support for structured
programming with local and global variables
   - Access to full OS API for advanced programmers
   - Easy but very fast 2D game support trough dedicated libraries (DirectX, SDL, ...)
   - Easy and high quality 3D support based on OGRE
   - Optimal use of the available hardware by using highly
optimized (assembly) commands
   - Source code is fully portable between AmigaOS, Windows and Linux, for both games
     and applications
   - Dedicated editor and development environment
   - Integrated debugger to easily trace
programming bugs.

Restricted Area (Programmed using PureBasic)

As with all products from Manaccom, the installation of PureBasic was a breeze and it installed on our test machine in under a few minutes and once the program was installed, I was ready to re-test my programming skills. The interface of PureBasic is relatively easy to use, depending on your programming backgrounds but the software is split into two sections, your menus are at the top, with your work area (code) directly below.

PureBasic interface

PureBasic also supports a visual editor that allows you to build a powerful interface without the need for excessive coding. Apart from the extremely fast compiler in PureBasic, the software package also supports a huge selection of inbuilt commands that allows you to cut back on program time as many of the objects have already been built into the interface. Those that get stuck with their programming will be thankful to know that PureBasic comes with an in-depth debugger that will help you find your programming errors before it drives you to drink. Those wishing to make commercial programs will be happy to know that their program is their own property and they can distribute it as a commercial application, shareware or even freeware without the need to purchase additional libraries.

Create powerful applications

Developers that wish to create graphic intensive programs (or games) will be happy to know that PureBasic has innate support for DirectX and SDL through dedicated libraries. This is great news for people wishing to create 2D or 3D games and from some of the demonstrations I have seen, the games themselves are quite impressive, especially knowing that they were written with the BASIC programming language. Just look at the screen shot for Restricted Area!

In conclusion, I would recommend PureBasic to either the novice or professional programmer because this software package allows you to run it on a variety of operating systems that include Windows and Linux. PureBasic also comes with no licensing fees that means you can install the program on as many computers as you own without any additional charges. If any updates are released for PureBasic, users will be happy to know that they can receive free updates, unlike some multinational companies on the market at the moment. With PureBasic, programming has never been easier or affordable, highly recommended!

Andrew B

System Requirements

  • Win95 or higher, Linux 4.0 or higher and AmigaOS v3.0 or higher

The Final Say!


Review Date: February 2004
Distributor: Manaccom

Copyright 2003 www.impulsegamer.com