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A Bee Card (ビーカード Bī Kādo) is a ROM cartridge developed by Hudson Soft as a software distribution medium for MSX computers. Bee Cards are approximately the size of a credit card, but thicker. Compared to most game cartridges, the Bee Card is small and compact. Because of the card's size, Atari Corporation also adopted it for the Atari Portfolio, a handheld PC released in 1989. It was also used by some Korg Synthesizers and workstations as external storage of user content like sound programs or song data.
Only a small number of MSX software titles were published on Bee Card. In order to accept a Bee Card, the cartridge slot of the MSX had to be fitted with a removable adapter: the Hudson Soft BeePack. The first mass-produced Bee Cards, however, were EEPROM telephone cards manufactured by Mitsubishi Plastics; these were first sold in Japan in 1985. The trade names Bee Card and Bee Pack derive from Hudson Soft's corporate logo, which features a cartoon bee.
MSX software published on Bee Card
|Baseball Craze||BC-M1, BC-M1E||Hudson Soft||1985|
|Jet Set Willy||BC-M3||Hudson Soft||1985|
|Bomberman||BC-M7||Hudson Soft / Japanese Softbank||1986|
|Star Soldier||BC-M8||Hudson Soft||1986|
|Champion Takahashi's Adventure Island||BC-M9||Hudson Soft||1986|
Hudson Soft later collaborated with NEC to develop a video game console called the PC Engine. The companies elected to use Hudson Soft's slim ROM cartridge technology to distribute PC Engine software. Hudson Soft adapted the design for their needs, and produced the HuCard. HuCards are slightly thicker than Bee Cards; also, whereas a Bee Card has 32 pins, a HuCard has 38.