[Forgotten pearls of the demoscene...]
One or two demos you could have missed so far


Let's face it: modern demoscene sucks.

Too many hexagonal lens flares, too many trilinear filtered polygons.
Too many satori demos and too few TBL DOS intros.

But, you know, as the title says, there is still hope in the past: maybe there's something to discover again in that beautiful period of our lives called "the nineties", when we listened to 2Unlimited and Snap, lens flares were just circular and to run some DOS intro you had to cross your fingers and hope that you had free enough of those 640k that should be enough for everyone. Or maybe those demos I'll speak about just suck, so you can just stop reading here and leave an angry, sarcastic message in the comments.
I don't care.

Modern demoscene is too involute.
Back in the nineties, you could have shown a torus (or the inside of a torus) and just ruled by doing that.
Today, you have to show 9 raytraced meta-toruses merging into each other, and you barely suck.
Yeah, your 12-part 4k with music isn't that bad for a firstie.

So, let's go back to the 90s and see some jewelry hidden in there.

Jive 2/Sublogic (1998)

We vote for pictures in 64k
That jazzy music (a mythical lo-fi .xm by lone wolf called "the funky corner"). Some spinning clouds in blue and purple. Some raytraced spheres and cylinders. The effects change every 4 patterns, and it's never the same effect. And music follows the intro's flow perfectly.
And then, the music stops, and, what's that? An image. Not a crappy, B/W pixelated image, but a full colour image.

This is Jive 2, aka charlie chong.
This is "the second part in the famous 'Jive' intro series".
Oh, how much I love that nonsense feeling demoscene had in the 90s? Modern demoscene takes things too seriously. And it sucks.

Fyvush/Jamm (1994)

Who the heck was fyvush finkel, btw?
Who does remember Jamm? What are the Jamm members doing today? Maybe they are just old farted house-men, growing up children that just want to chat on Whatsapp and don't know what IRC is. I'm talking about an intro that squeezed each clock cycle out of your dusty 16Mhz 386sx. Come on, who does that today? Just Trixter, that, as everybody knows, is an old farted house-man of the 90s.

Ok, OK, Fyvush has some strange coder/psychedelic colours, makes more than one effect with palette cycling (THAT is so nineties), but, damn, which modern intro has upside down characters at the end? None. And NOT because no one makes DOS intros anymore.

Fyvush made a FAST rotozoomer years before all that cache shit by Pascal.

An please, PLEASE, watch that spinning hellraiser cube move smooth on a 386. Just buy a 386 to watch it, dude. It's cheap.

Overtone/Suburban (1999)

You *want* that, right?
Fast forward to the end of the nineties.
I bet nobody remembers Suburban anymore. I do. They were the last defenders of Pmode/W, the wizards of bilinear filtering, the masters of DOS-era and 320x240 design. I have seen this intro live at The Trip 1999 and it rules. No that's not for nostalgic reasons. This post is not nostalgic. Shut up.
Overtone has everything you'd love in a DOS intro: 3d with overlayed wireframe lines, free directional tunnels and that lightray effect you'll drool on.

And music by pete e, one of the best (and forgotten) musicians of all time.

Now go hear all his modules. And then go watch all of Suburban productions.
Then return here and continue reading this.

Mother lode/fudge (1997)

That scaring 3d object you'll dream tonight
Ready to have a bilinear filtered orgasm?
Yeah, probably someone still remembers fudge, but maybe for their "the clone" series. Nah, that's too mainstream.
Fudge invented the "super bon bon" effect (that's a trademark). The Fudge guys are soo cool that they decided to name a demo "planet groove" (what's more 90s than that?).

Mother lode features an aggressive music from croakr/TPOLM, and as said all effects are bilinear filtered (no, you don't need a Geforce GTX 690 for that). Mother lode has blue objects on a red background and red objects on a blue background. Mother lode is the prodrome to all the orange, TPOLM, TBL and everybody else's intros of the second half of the nineties.

Mother lode has that stylish, linear, fire-esque fudge logo you'll envy forever.

Pandemic/Byterapers (1997)

Sucho's copyrighted effect
Pandemic: adj. 1. widespread; general. 2. Medicine: Epidemic over a wide geographic area and affecting a large portion of the population.

You want to watch this just for that chick's picture. Yeah, that chick with the alien skin.
You want to watch this just for that underwater scene.
You want to watch this just for the [B] logo in 256 colours, even if the demo is in truecolor.
If you watch Pandemic, you'll appreciate 1bit animations and two overlapped, alpha blended free directional tunnels.
You would have never said that.

Space/Euthanasia (1997)

Space mushrooms
Euthanasia is probably more a forgotten group than the maker of forgotten demos.
A little is known of this Hungarian demogroup, but one thing we remember is the absolute consistency of their productions, starting from the *names* of those production (always a one-letter word). Each production had also a powerful 3d-engine (640x400, not bad for 1997), capable of filling your screen with advanced software-rendered scenes. Each demo had also a little "story" in it.

"Space" is worth mentioning for the smoothness of its scenes and for the spacey killer-plant.

Only downside of this otherwise mythical group: re-releasing "Spirit" in the mobile demo compo at Assembly 2004.
But you know, no one is perfect and we can forgive Euthanasia for this. And love them.

Stream/mfx (1996)

Analog feeling in that mfx demo
Mfx, aka the most hermetic group in the demoscene.

"Stream" is full of symbols, strange writings (maybe because they are just upside down) and strange pictures.
And it has an astonishing lens flare (not hexagonal) running through an hyper-smooth tunnel.

Music is pounding, obsessive.

You don't have to try to understand mfx's demos. You just have to let them flow through you and be assimilated.

Blind/eufrosyne (1996)

*hexagonal* *lens* *flares* !!!
With only six productions in the timespan of 2 years, eufrosyne is nothing less than a legend.
In 2 years, they managed to win Assembly, place in the higher slots of the most important parties, and write a masterpiece like "time zone + 13:00".

Blind *has* hexagonal lens flares. Yeah, almost 20 years before.

Blind has the usual circular distortions that are a watermark of Sucho (the same coder of Pandemic). And that "water" effect. You have to see it to belive and never forget it (again).

Public demand/purple (1999)

Watch the inside of a sphere...through a sphere
This intro has 4 metatoruses. Not 9, but 4 is good for old 1999.
And an impressive goa-ish module by rez, that compresses down to 21kb (size counts).
I don't know what's appealing in this one. Maybe the danish-style pointillized background or such. For sure, travelling through two concentric spheres filled with particles is trippy. We want purple and danish style back, that's for sure.



So?
Probably there is more of this. Write about your personal, forgotten pearl in the comments.
In the mean time, I'll go watch Stash for the 124th time, just to hear that synth bass resonating in my subwoofer again.

(Greetings to sublogic, purple, euthanasia, fudge, blasphemy, soopadoopa, inf, quad, acme, cryonics, excess, tpolm, dubius, cubic team, $een, complex, jamm, moottori, eufrosyne, orange, japotek, deathstar, coma, nooon, wildlight, valhalla, psychic link, realtech, astroidea, capacala, mfx, bug2fix, camorra, doomsday, trauma, TPOLM and everyone I forgot - you made the 90s rule, guys)

(pssst: as always, we've packed those 9 gems here for your pleasure and your laziness. Watch with dosbox)


posted by friol at 6/22/2014 09:40:00 AM - under: , , , - comments? here (4)



4 commenti:

Nikolas Karadimas ha detto...

I couldnt agree more with your words... Well said and truly speak, that thoughts i have some years now too and im afraid that things cant changing but gonna worst :/ Easy,shiny & serious path that demoscene took, drives to corrupted, unaesthetic and low quality prods.
Im lucky that still i can run my old demos without dosbox and my regret is that there are none demoparties in Greece any more...
Yesterday i watch "Toys of gods" ^_^

friol ha detto...

"Toys" by gods belongs more the the "pearls that must be forgotten" IMHO :)

kaneel ha detto...

Double TPOLM greeting, you know how to roll!

friol ha detto...

@kaneel: and T P O L M

the tunnel - demoscene blog - (c) friol 2k10