Fractal Zoomer

Fractal Zoomer is a homebrew Nintendo 64 demo made by RedBox in August 1997. Also know as Mandelbrot Zoomer, this demo shows the process of the Nintendo 64 zooming into a Mandelbrot fractal.

You can download the files here by using the password “mandelbrotbyredbox”.

Transcript and files


Mandelbrot Zoomer
Written by Redbox
Greetings this is Mandelbrot Zoomer written by redbox as like something to do. More time was spent attempting to get stuff working that was actually spend on the main part of the program so don’t expect the world. Thanks to Silo and Fractal of iceage who pointed out where I was going wrong with my C code horrible stuff C. Thanks also to Con Mango who inspired me to write this. And also thanks to everyone on the IRC channel who helped me in their own roundabout way.


     Coded by LaC!

Dextrose Description

Title : Fractal Zoomer

Author : RedboX
Group : Dextrose
Date : 25.07.1997
Platform : N64
File :
Downloads since November 11, 1999 :2178

Description :

Mandelbrot Zoomer

The Mandelbrot Set is a set of complex numbers that satisfy the equation F(z) = z2 +c and converge inwards, starting from Z=0.

From tilde club

What that means is that the formula is repeated (using its output as its input) again an again until one of two things happens: It either implodes inwards or explodes outwards. The inner black area is where the function implodes inwards, and the rest explodes outwards. The shade of colour is denoted by how many iterations of the function occur before it explodes outwards.

The interesting thing about the Mandelbrot set is that it is a fractal. This means that if you zoom into the white borders, you get infinitely complex looping patterns that carry on being more specific for eternity.

The Fractal Zoomer demo shows an example of this by zooming into a point of the Mandelbrot set on and on until it ends up in a section that has no colour for the mount of iterations its working with. You could get a similar effect by zooming into any part if the set’s border. Here’s an animated gif of the above video:

I’m not too sure about what are the exact coordinates of the point where the Fractal Zoomer demo zooms into. I have a few approximations though with a few different tools:

  • c = -0.7411842782067648 -0.20975320167208794i
  • c = -0.743476189765 -0.184410176047i

Either way, you can follow the video to see for yourself where it leads to. The area it keeps zooming into is what I believe are called the ‘seahorse’ regions of the Mandelbrot set.

There is not much more to say about the demo besides what it is. Due to how to colour definitions appear in the deeper zooms, there seems to be some kind of limitation to the amount of iterations are done per calculation. Overall, there are 80 zoom states before it ends in the blue abyss.

Articles across the web

Fractal Zoomer (aka Mandelbrot Zoomer) is a Nintendo 64 homebrew demo by RedboX that zooms into a Mandelbrot set indefinitely. Let's take a look.
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