Let's say you're writing a new game and you haven't yet learned Assembly Language.
The days of having to climb Mount Assembler ...
The biggest problem with assembly language is the *idea and stigma* that it is somehow hard. A little more tedious, yes, but not harder. The main difference between programming languages is how they abstract the mechanics of the computer and the details of the system. In the case of assembly language there is no abstraction layer, so you need to know the details of the computer, how computers really work, and how the CPU interacts with the rest of the system. That is the hard part really, and information you should know anyway (especially if you are writing games).
One of the nice things about learning to program the raw computer (aside from the speed and total control of the system) is that you then have an understanding of how higher level languages abstract things from you. You can use that knowledge in higher level languages, making you a better programmer all around.
Also, since all stored-program computers fundamentally work the same, learning any computer system and assembly language will help you on other systems that have different CPUs and system architectures. When I learned 9900 assembly back in the 80's, I learned skills that I still use today on modern computers and other classic systems.
Sure, one can always do better with Assembly Language programming. The BASIC compiler significantly empowers the less advanced coders is all!'
I don't disagree that the compiler will help make programs written in BASIC/XB faster, but I do disagree that assembly programmers are somehow more advanced than other programmers. The complexity of a program is the same no matter what language you write in, and games can be some of the most complex kinds of programs.
You can solve many programming problems using many different languages, and typically people pick what they already know rather than the right tool for the job. On modern computers the actual language is becoming less and less important (even interpreted scripting languages are fast enough for most tasks), but IMO on old classic computers with limited memory and speed, assembly is the right tool for games. Another nice advantage of old classic computers is that you can understand the whole system, and even maintain a mental model of the whole system.
The return on your investment here is significant!
As is the return on investment for learning to use assembly. And the feeling you get when your assembly program runs and works is fantastic. I remember being absolutely giddy watching my programs run when I was learning assembly. It was great.