Nordic Scene Review 01

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Nordic Scene Review #1: First Blood

Nordic Scene Review #1: First Blood     
Welcome to the historical first issue   
of Nordic Scene Review, the fresh new   
mag that everyone's talking about.      
You may think it's a completely frplxxed
up idea to start a new C-64 mag in 2005,
but it had to be done, and as no one    
else was doing it, we had to do it.     
Why does it have to be done?  Because   
the other mags aren't doing their damn  
job, of course.  Too many demos just    
don't get the attention they deserve.   
It's not like it takes a lot of time    
and effort to write some demo reviews,  
but people are still too lazy to do it. 
This is where Nordic Scene Review       
steps in.  We'll take care of reviewing 
the stuff you produce, no matter how    
crappy it is.  This is supposed to be   
the Game Over(view) of the demo scene,  
which means we'll do our best to release
it often and to write what we think     

about stuff, not what we think others   
want us to write.                       
Our main priority is to review demos,   
but we'll of course also write about    
your music and graphics collections, and
if we really feel like it, maybe we'll  
even say a few words about other mags.  
But it's not like we're going to set    
rules for ourselves, so you'll just have
to wait and see what happens.           
In this issue you'll get fresh reviews  
of the demos from Floppy, Forever and   
Breakpoint, as well as some other stuff 
that's been released during the last    
month or so.                            
As this is the historical first (blood) 
issue, a little explanation of the      
scientific methods we're using to       
analyze the demos are in order.  First  
of all, you have to understand that our 
reviews are 100% objective.  We have    
methods for completely repressing       
our individuality, and we use them      

extensively while writing these reviews.
Unfortunately we can't let you in on    
our secret methods, but we can give you 
hints on some rules we've derived to    
make our work more efficient:           
- Graphics are more important           
  than music, unless the musician is    
  a capricorn.                          
- Only Swedish fake demos are funny.    
- Effects that need more than 7 frames  
  are automatically disqualified.       
- The letter 'e' must never be used in  
  labels (yes, we have your sources).   
- Reviews of Metalvotze releases will   
  only consist of speculations about    
  their age (have they turned 14 yet?). 
- Ficken Im Zelt is not a fake demo.    
  Neither is Dansa med Achmed.          
- Releases by people we don't like will 
  never get positive reviews.           
Now that you know that we're using      
scientific methods, you have to agree   
that there's no room for different      

opinions.  If you don't agree with us,  
that just proves that you're mentally   
ill, and should see a doctor as soon    
as possible.                            
Although we have confidence in our      
own methods, we're influenced by the    
principles, theories and laws that      
guide other mag editors.  One example   
is how we'll deal with criticism.       
Negative criticism will be ignored,     
while positive criticism will make us   
happy and proud.                        
I guess I could go on forever about this
and that, but I'll quit now and give    
you a chance to move on to the rest of  
the mag.  You wouldn't want to miss it. 

Text by Puterman and Twoflower          
Magsys by Iopop and Twoflower           

The Floppy releases

The Floppy releases                     
I'm not quite sure yet, but it seems the
Throckmorton device is used to transport
you to a place that's pretty far from   
Earth, but which is still quite similar 
to it.  While people only have one eye, 
they're elegantly dressed in hat and    
tie, like all real gentlemen.  But their
transmissions are hard to understand,   
you have to use a monitor to decipher   
their messages.                         
There are lots of good reasons to       
dislike this demo, which any pouet      
scener will quickly realize; it's too   
short (a real demo should steal 5-10    
minutes of your life and contain at     
least 10 different parts), there's no   
code (ie.  rotating cubes) and there's  
no design (aka fades).  For some        
reason I still like it.  While some     
aspects of it are quite similar to      
some earlier Iopop+Twoflower releases,  

this one feels much less like a demo.   
In a good way.  Triad have pushed the   
concept demo one step further towards   
something that some people might call   
"art" (and in case anyone was wondering,
I'm not quite as fond of Borderline as  
some other people).  However, when I    
hear that word in connection with demos,
I reach for my shotgun (which I always  
keep handy in case someone would happen 
to say something that I don't like).    
Thumbs up for Dalezy's tune, it might   
be the best tune I've heard from him    
so far.                                 
I suppose Imminent Threat and 78-80 have
to be mentioned too.  It's hard to say  
much about the former, it's different,  
which is good.  It has some obvious     
similarities with earlier Iopop stuff,  
and it's nice of him to release this    
stuff, while others might just let      
the bits rot away in their disk boxes.  
78-80 is a bit more conventional, but   
it's still lightyears ahead of most     

of the crap that people call demos.     
I like the mood in this one.            
It seems it was more of a coincidence   
that these two demos were released at   
the same time, but I have a feeling that
the final result might have been even   
better if they had been combined into   
one demo.                               
Magervalp showed up at Floppy, although 
he'd promised not to come, and he       
even brought a small demo with him.     
Unfortunately I can't think of anything 
positive to say about it.  Let's just   
hope that he'll make something a bit    
more ambitious again, like the Bunny    
demo.  Four hours of work is not enough.
The Dancing Snowman demo from Macx      
and Zzap69 is a weird combination of    
styles and graphics formats.  I like    
the pictures in the first part, although
they're simple, but the end part feels a

bit too standard.  So although I don't  
really like it, I wish there were more  
demos that tried to be different in     
different ways, like this one does (no, 
not all "concept demos" have to be about
the miserable love life of coders (and  
yes, I know I've said that 666 times    
before, but it might be worth repeating 
it now and then)).                      
"Poland": red+white 8x8 plasma, Polish  
hawk ripped from Opium etc.  Hello?     
In case you guys haven't noticed, jokes 
about Polish demos and 8x8 are starting 
to feel a bit old, especially since     
the Poles stopped making demos 5 years  
or so ago.  I can't think of anything   
positive to say about this one.  Just a 
little reminder: jokes are supposed to  
be funny, m'kay?                        
"Broken" by Nightlord (of Civitas,      
although no one else was involved in    
creating this demo) is really too good  
to be wasted by bugs and glitches,      
but it seems he wanted to release it    

at Floppy, and I guess there wasn't     
enough time to fix the bugs.  This is   
by far the best stuff I've seen from    
Nightlord, although it's hard to compare
it with his more code oriented demos.   
Conceptually it's much better than      
Mist, but that's a demo I'd rather      
forget anyway.                          
What I like about this demo is that it's
so abstract.  It feels like only the    
most necessary parts of the narrative   
have been extracted and placed on the   
screen.  A less fortunate demo designer 
might have ruined it all by adding scene
poetry.  Maybe someone could do us all  
a favour and hack the code to add some  
sprite overlays with important messages 
like "my love is gone, I feel so lonely 
tonight" just to show how easy it is to 
ruin a good idea.                       
Damn, I like that idea, but I'm way too 
lazy to implement it myself, so I'll    
just write some text and you can try to 

imagine what the demo would be like with
it added.  First screen: I watch the    
birds, and think of you.  The scrolling 
picture: I don't see the sun anymore.   
Circuits part: Not everything in life is
ones and zeros.  Birds over city part:  
Our love flew away, like a bird.  Last  
part: You said you'd always love me,    
but you lied.  And then just finish it  
off with something like "Now I'm broken 
:(" and everything would be perfect.    
Broken by Civitas                       
The first Floppy release I will be      
touching here. After reading Puterman's 
review I can't do much but agree. It's  
damned easy to ruin a demo, to shift it 
from beeing subtle and abstract to it   
becoming a melodramatic travesty. Here, 

the thin line lies intact. Eventhough   
I have much to add in terms of design   
and slickness, I still really like lots 
of the details. The birds for instance; 
picturing them as they are done in this 
demo makes me smile. The closest thing  
to this demo which I have seen so far   
is MacX's 'Autumn Clouds', released     
quite some time ago. And in theme and   
feeling it resembles the widely unspread
'The Sun' from Shape, released at last  
LCP. Comparing this demo to Nightlord's 
earlier work, "Mist", this is taking    
seven-mile-boot steps in the right      
1.000.000 Lightyears from Earth from    
It's quite hard to get started reviewing
this one. Cannot really tell you        
why, but I figure that I have a hard    
time deciding what I feel for this      

demo. It's a very nice demo, although   
a quite expected one. It's fitted       
into one theme, but with two different  
expressions. It feels new, yet it feels 
like I have seen things before. Perhaps 
I should start to try to straighten out 
what I feel is the problems with this   
productions? To start with, I recognize 
the expressions of both Puterman and    
Hollowman in this demo, and during      
the compo I could pinpoint almost       
every single part and tell who did      
what. The majority of the first parts   
are breathing the abstract expressions  
which are courtesy of Puterman, with    
some additional graphics and effects    
from Hollowman. The second chapter      
is vice versa, but strangely enough,    
the demo still remains remarkably       
consistant. The secret is ofcourse      
that Hollowman and Puterman know how    
to make good demos by now, and this     
demo is no exception. The result is, as 
Cruzer put it, an Ikea-demo - a Swedish 
scene production with details being     

of somewhat discussable quality. But    
as a consumer you sure receive nicely   
designed standard stuff for a low price.
Graphically, this is much of a mixture  
between 'Emanation Machine' with its    
sparse graphics and circular focuses,   
and the vectorized style which you can  
find in a lot of the FLT demos released 
lately. I kind of love Hollowman's      
wicked aesthetics using animated vector 
graphics. It's something very basic     
and adoring about it which touches a    
nerve in me. Seeing it makes me wish    
for another complete story being folded 
out in this way (like f.ex. 'Pretending 
To See The Light') instead of being     
given small bursts of nice animation    
(this demo and 'Wok Zombie'). You       
might complain that there's a lot of    
style-recycling done, and sure, it is,  
and sure - you're getting what you      
have been expecting. This is a nice     
standard FLT-demo, but mind, it's not   
'Pretending To See The Light', and it's 

not 'Loaded' either.                    

The Forever demos

The Forever demos                       
Dreams Come True from Samar             
Forever 6 sure seem to have been a      
mighty nice party, with this demo being 
the winner of the democompo. Instead    
of wasting space, I will give you some  
immediate, live reactions from #C-64,   
at lunchtime, 050321:                   
< Oswald > holly fuck how awful. whish  
I havent seen it.                       
<Twoflowr> More picture slideshows with 
anti-PC stuff for the scene... It feels 
so... fresh!                            
<puterman> Twoflowr: definitely, every  
demo should have windows jokes.         
MOS Tribute from Padua                  
This demo recieved the second place on  

Forever 6, and contrary to the winner   
of the compo, this release actually     
has some redeeming features, like the   
symbols and the music. The demo contains
the story of MOS Technologies and how   
they were bought by Commodore. But in   
general, this is another cheapshot      
sloppy release complete with black      
background and ported text which        
shouldn't be spent too much words on.   
Want a draw? from Brutal                
Released outside the compo on Forever   
6, I found this to be the nicest        
file released in the partypack,         
amongst TCH's UFLI-pic. In short, it's  
about TCH wanting to draw stuff for     
people. Outright 1992-styled, it gave me
a little sting in my heart remembering  
my days of happy swapping, opening      
badly taped stashes of disks with not   
too sharp scissors. Having opened the   
package, you often discovered a disk    
containing two disksides of Brutal      

cracks of which only half would load,   
thanks to the low quality of the disk   
and the sloppy handling of it by a      
swapper from Nordmaling. This was the   
kind of file you would expect to find   
in such a sending, and even if I didn't 
appreciate it then, I do now. If only   
for nostalgic reasons.                  

The Breakpoint stuff

The Breakpoint stuff                    
The Breakpoint demo competition managed 
to surprise me negatively this year,    
although I didn't expect all that much. 
I was hoping for at least one good demo,
but I guess this will teach me to lower 
my expectations even more...            
The winner was the RCC 2005 invitation, 
which is a nice little invitation,      
but definitely not what you'd expect    
from a demo compo winner.  I guess the  
compo audience liked the singalong tune,
which I don't understand anything of,   
as it's in German (my guess is that it's
about having sex with your parents,     
which I find a bit sick, but well,      
everything I know about Germans I've    
learned from Metalvotze demos, so I'm   
not surprised).  I kind of like the idea
of the two versions of the same tune    
(by Jeff and Dalezy), so thumbs up for  

that, and the logo is also kind of cool.
The second place in the compo was       
taken by K2's Neon, and I'm sure the    
K2 guys were very disappointed with     
the 2nd place, as it's a much more      
ambitious demo.  My guess is that they  
were punished by the voters for the     
very low tempo of their presentation.   
All the parts seem to go on forever,    
and then they keep going, until they    
finally end and you're taken to the     
next, almost infinite, part.            
This isn't going to be all complaints,  
though.  I like the variation within    
some of the parts.  That's something    
that others should try to achieve as    
well.  But please, don't copy the "we'll
run every part for 15 minutes" concept. 
As usual when it comes to K2            
productions, the aesthetics are pretty  
original.  Or as some people (including 

me) would put it: it's horribly ugly.   
Some parts are just way beyond my       
understanding, but this might be due to 
my lack of understanding of "design" and
"art".  And while I'm being all negative
here, please, please, please,  never    
make another loading part which displays
the text "loading" and nothing else.    
The music in the demo grabbed my        
attention, mostly because it doesn't    
follow the C-64 music standards.        
Most of the tunes seem to be some       
kind of drum'n'bass, or possibly "IDM"  
(maybe even UDM, ha-ho-heeee-heee, I'm  
so funny).  I can't say I actually liked
any of the music, but at least it wasn't
another collection of lame attempts at  
cloning Drax' or Jeroen Tel's style.    
All in all, thumbs up for trying to do  
something original, thumbs down for the 
execution, the bugs and the questionable

The 3rd place demo, by Singular, again  
looks pretty ugly.  Well, at least the  
Zak McKracken graphics weren't as ugly  
as the pictures displayed immediately   
before them, but that's not actually    
Singular's own achievement.  Those      
converted pictures might again be an    
example of "art", but to me they mostly 
look ugly.  At least it's pretty short, 
so those of us who aren't too fond of   
Sad's music don't have to suffer more   
than a minute or so.  However, if you're
into his offbeat style, close your eyes 
and float away with this wild tune.     
Moving down to the 4th and last place,  
we find the truly standout horror       
release, Surprise Productions' C-64     
debut.  This one offers a quite ugly    
hires logo, an 8x8 plasma and a 1x1     
scroller.  Welcome to the C-64, boys,   
you'll need to do much better than this 
to earn a reputation in the C-64 scene, 
similar to the one you have (or used to 
have?) in the PC scene.  Well, at least 

it has a decent tune by Dalezy.  Okay,  
let's not be so harsh for now, after all
it's their first release, so let's just 
hope that the next one will be better.  
But anyway, I find it pretty strange to 
decide to start a C-64 section without  
recruiting any skilled members first.   
And it's not like anyone's going to     
be very interested in joining a group   
that produces this kind of crap.        
Maybe they're under the impression      
that the C-64 scene is filled with      
unemployed coders.  Well, in that case, 
welcome to reality...  It's not possible
that they expect people to jump into    
their arms because of the famous name,  
is it?  Or maybe they're interested     
in recruiting this magazine staff's     
new favorite coder, Die Chefrocker?     
I really don't know what to make of all 
this, so I'll just leave it.            
To sum it up, what we got was one       
production that really tried to be      

a good demo, two small demos that       
weren't really trying, and one decent   
invitation, which really didn't belong  
in the demo compo at all.  The fact that
the latter one won just underlines the  
fact that this was no real demo compo.  
I kind of feel sorry for the K2 dudes,  
but it's pretty much their own fault    
for stealing too much time from the     
party audience.  At the same time,      
it's nice to see that people don't      
necessarily vote for the demo with the  
greatest number of parts.  Of course,   
releases like these would have been okay
for a smaller party, but Breakpoint is  
no small party, which is obvious if you 
check out who took part in the 4k compo.
However, it might be time to finally    
give up hope about the Breakpoint demo  
The 4K's of Breakpoint                  

In ways, the Breakpoint of 2005 was     
remarkable. Not for the fact that it    
actually was held in a place where      
people didn't risk freezing to death,   
and surely not for the demos which were 
released. The remarkable was the nice   
amount of 4k intros, an artform which   
so far has been mastered by Krill.      
Surely boosted by the fact that Krill   
wasn't about to compete this year, as   
many as 9 entries were found. After     
sorting out the two most retarded       
releases (Chefrocker and Metalvotze)    
and our own, 'Hiptrip', we are left with
6 more or less nice 4k's to review.     
Let's start with Fairlight's entry      
'Stroh', which is about what you        
could expect from Dwangi and Maktone,   
with some additional graphics from      
Hollowman, if I have understood things  
correctly. The details are nothing      
remarkable, but I like the overall      
feeling, strangeskool stuff in 4k. Very 
much Dwangi, thank you. Not as amusing  

as the last one was 'Marching Squares'  
from Smash. Quite interesting, and I    
sure believe you could do nice stuff    
with this strangely familiar floffy     
effect, but it sure isn't done here. Oh,
the standard LDA#$00, STA$D020,         
STA$D021 is used? How handy. Let's      
move on, and deal with Laxity's little  
intro instead. The intro is called      
"Boombastic" and is a quite ordinary    
intro. Yes. Nothing more needs to be    
added, since it gives the about the same
vibes as any nice crackintro.           
Somewhere in this review, I have to     
deal with 'Inside a Bubble' from Padua. 
This is... mixed? Yes. The unbelievably 
ugly zoomscroller destroys much of      
what this demo could have been, since   
the ECI-plasma and the bobs were nice.  
Oh, and yes, the plasma with the donuts 
should have been left out too. I can't  
understand why people have to cram in   
butt-ugly stuff in an 4k, just because  
they can? I mean, in a 4k, parts of     

it IS cramming stuff in, but couldn't   
the rest of the mem have been used on   
a couple of sprites or chars to add     
something even more to the visually nice
parts? But on the other hand, i'm just  
a whining graphician. Next please!      
Oh, here comes my favourite. Clarences  
nice 'LDA Stain', which sure had some   
depack time, but which achieves a       
similar effect like the one we did in   
The Throckmorton Device, but with two   
notable differences. This is made in 4K,
and I paintshopped the damned animation 
where he calculated it. Pock. Advantage 
Chorus. The rest of the demo is just    
about as nice. You ought to take a look 
if you haven't, if not only to take a   
look at the upside-down camelbars. This 
didn't win though. Dekadence did.       
Let's face it. The Dekadence demo,      
'Pico' has about everything you need    
in a 4K. Nice music, visually nice      
effects, and some of the neatest        

fullchargfx I have seen. It's fairly    
easy to understand that this won the    
compo. It doesn't give me the same vibe 
as Clarence's one, which feels more     
like 4K version of a Camelot-demo,      
but i'm sure it'll win me over in       
the long run. I won't go into details   
describing the effects. Just watch it   
and you'll understand what I mean. Yeah,
and the little DKD logo in the intro    
felt unnecessary.                       
While the Breakpoint demo compo was a   
real disappointment again, the 4k compo 
made me feel quite good.  There weren't 
any real killer releases, but at least  
most of the entries were meant to be    
serious and there was a wide selection  
of styles.  So whatever your preferred  
subgenre of C-64 effects is, you'll     
probably find it represented among these
4k entries.                             

Didi of Laxity made a comeback with a   
typical crack intro style 4k.  This one 
emanates some serious data vibes,       
and although it's all been done 666     
times before, this one gives me a nice, 
cozy data feeling.  I just wish the     
logo had fit better into the design,    
but I guess weird colour combinations   
is an important part of this kind of    
Metalvotze surprised me with two        
completely different parts: the intro   
scroller makes me think of computers    
in old movies, while the second         
one has an effect that looks like a     
distorted version of Graham's plasma    
from the Forever demo (2004?  2003?).   
Again there's a logo at the bottom of   
the screen that makes my stomach turn,  
but that doesn't really matter: they've 
taken a step in the right direction     
(however, I guess it'd be impossible    
to move in any other direction).        
Unfortunately I suspect that they'll    

take a few steps back again, just       
like they did after their last serious  
release, the demo Hires, released at    
Mekka/Symposium 2001.                   
Die Chefrocker (?) provides the         
obligatory 8x8 plasma.  No further      
comment is necessary.  (If I'd been in  
a mean mood I'd probably said something 
like "please fuck off and die", but I'm 
not, so forget what I just said.)       
Iopop of Triad had to give us something 
different, of course.  The only effect  
shown would have fit nicely into 78-80  
or Imminent threat.  I would have wanted
some more, and in its loneliness this   
part feels a bit empty.  However, it's  
nice to see the warez flowing from the  
Triad well.                             
Dwangi strikes back with another 4k     
with three parts, just like in his      
last one, Blueberry.  We've seen the    
bobs before, but the first part, with   

the parallax trees is nice.  However,   
I'm sure this excellent idea could have 
been done better.  It's a solid release,
but not a compo winner.  At least not   
in this company.                        
I've been waiting for Lord Hypnos to    
finally release something really nice.  
He's been close a couple of times,      
but this time it feels like he hasn't   
really tried.  It's a collection of     
parts with no connection at all, and    
none of the individual parts is very    
good, although I'm always happy to see  
another ECI plasma.  The zoom scroller  
has to be the ugliest one ever, and the 
8x8 effect felt completely unnecessary, 
while the bob plotter just made me yawn.
Come on mr. Hypnos, I know you can do   
a lot better!                           
AEG does what he's best at: recycling   
old parts.  This time it's the          
metaballs part from the Driss demo      

(which I think won the substandard      
demo compo at Mekka/Symposium 2000).    
I think this one's faster, and it's     
a lot nicer to watch than some of his   
other efforts, but it still feels a bit 
cheap.  The same goes for the standard  
disclaimer in the note: apparently the  
code was written in 4 hours.  That kind 
of excuses don't impress me at all.     
If you only have 4 hours to spare, why  
bother at all?  I can imagine that a    
release from AEG that he actually worked
hard on would kick ass, but he never    
seems to want to finish his releases.   
The fact that the tune is old doesn't   
make me feel any better.  Well, at      
least there weren't any obvious bugs    
this time...                            
Clarence is back again to show that     
his comeback in the scene is for real.  
He's produced 4 parts that are all nice 
(ranging from pretty nice to really     
nice).  I'm sure there are a lot of     
coders who have been planning to make a 

fullscreen line tunnel, and here it is  
in all its glory.  The main part is of  
course the upside-down camel bars, which
should make more than one competing     
coder scratch his head.  Unfortunately  
there's not much flow in this demo,     
and while this is a good release, I'm   
sure a guy like Krill could have taken  
the same effects and turned them into   
a kickass release, just by connecting   
the dots in a better way.               
Dekadence have a habit of getting the   
second place in the Mekka/Breakpoint 4k 
compos, and Pico also felt pretty much  
like a second place release.  The music 
by SounDemoN is the thing that stands   
out here.  The code isn't bad, and it's 
sure nice to see Britelite doing other  
things than chunky movelist effects,    
and although I have a feeling that      
his parts (a few variations of the      
same basic effect) could be improved    
by a good coder, I don't really care.   
Dekadence 4ks aren't about impressive   

code, they're about good flow and fresh 
music.  Unfortunately a bit of the flow 
from their earlier releases are missing,
especially in the silent break between  
the first part and the rest of the demo.
So I'll just say "keep working on it,   
boys", and hope that they'll be back    
next year with something cooler.        
Of course, next year Krill will probably
be back to win the compo again.  Too bad
he was missing this year, because he's  
the king of the 4ks, and the compo isn't
the same without him.  There's no clear 
winner among these 9 demos, and although
most of them were serious entries,      
Smash Designs, Chorus and Dekadence seem
like the obvious winners.  (It seems    
my prognosis wasn't quite correct,      
FLT actually beat Smash and DKD won.    
Oh well, I'll become a prophet in my    
next life instead.)                     

Random releases

Random releases                         
16 Years of Silence by Science 451      
One of my single most surprising        
releases since Camelots 'You Know the   
Routine' suddenly arrived, marking the  
return of Science 451. Return? Nah,     
this is more a personal comeback from   
H.O. who decided to make a demo for the 
sake of old sins. Nevertheless I get    
happy seeing this cozy little release.  
Boy, one of the bigger wished I had in  
mind, back in 1990 (save for joining    
Triad) was joining up with the mighty   
Science 451, whose demos 'Fullt 0s'     
and 'Spain II' had been some serious    
objects for my affection. To emphazise  
how much I liked them demos (which I    
ran from tape), I can tell you that I   
still can recite several of the sillier 
passages of the scrolltexts. Perhaps I  

had too great expectations when I ran   
it, since I got kind of surprised when  
the entire demo consisted of one intro  
and two parts and no scrolls...         
Suddenly I awoke from my daydreaming,   
becoming aware of the fact that I       
actually judged the demo from an 1989   
perspective. But why not? From my       
1989 perspective, this demo had too     
less scrollers, no dycps and was too    
short. But seen with todays eyes, this  
demo is great - in its own way. Just    
as Mahoney's demo was a couple of       
years ago, and the surfacing of those   
forgotten demos by Offence even longer  
back. Now I only hope that H.O. breaks  
his promise and does another demo -     
with more scrollers this time!          
As Far as the Eye Can See by Tinnitus   
Sometimes, in the shade of greater      
events, you often forget the small      
wonders which surface on our scene. This

time, I have promised myself not        
to. I'm referring to the wonderful      
"As Far as the Eye Can See", from       
Tinnitus, released about the same time  
as the Floppy stuff reached us. Taking  
the stroll from the Vast Plains over    
the Rapid River, crossing the Haunted   
Graveyard upon my way towards the small 
hamlet of Razlyn, I feel serene. When   
I open my eyes, I find myself lost,     
dazed and confused in a mixture of      
Ghouls'n Ghosts, Guild of Thieves,      
Iron Lord and Might&Magic II. I feel    
in a way I haven't done since I lost    
myself in C-64 roleplayinggames in the  
early nineties. Given, you feel more at 
home at some places than others while   
exploring the map, and the nicest thing 
is that you always can head elsewhere.  
With heavy celtish influences and       
strong Iron Lord-themed graphics        
from Trompkins, this collection is      
themewise quite the opposite of our     
own collection, Beatnik. The graphic    

glitches between the gfx and the        
chars just adds to the feeling of a     
badly fixed NTSC-rpg by Origin or New   
World Computing. I haven't been this    
touched by a C-64 release since last    
time I tried to defeat the mad god,     
Tarjan. And that was one year ago. Who  
claimed Poland was dead scenewise?      
Inca -The Lost Treasure from Covenant   
Inbetween Floppy and Forever, this      
little slideshow arrived from Covenant. 
Coded by Richard as a poor compensation 
for not making a proper game out of     
the graphics that JSL sent him. I       
really dislike coders doing like this   
(no, you're not one of them, Henrik),   
trigging their graphicians to make      
graphics and then scrapping the whole   
project. Ok, so there is no hard        
work behind most of these pictures,     
JSL can do far better, but releasing    
a pointless, sloppy slideshow with      
kitchen-details under the name of       

Inca is a shame. I seriously hope the   
spirit of Atahualpa and the great winged
snakegod, Quetzalcoatl, will haunt him  
in his dreams.                          
Fruit Salad by Panda Design             
Panda Design released a small demo to   
let the world know that there's a new   
group around.  Of course it's nothing   
to rant and rave about, but it's a nice 
little piece in all its simplicity,     
and you shouldn't demand too much from  
a first release.  I kind of like the    
way the screen looks, and the tune      
is pretty catchy (I hope I'm allowed    
to use such musical terms, with me      
not being a musician and everything).   
Well done guys, but we'll expect a lot  


While I looked away for a second (or    
rather, I was off the net for a week), 3
new mags were released.  Game Over(view)
keeps ruling the C-64 mag scene with    
regular releases and bad attitude, and  
the latest issue is just another piece  
of evidence that you don't need a nice  
magsys to make a kickass mag.           
The Scene World crew also keep doing    
their thing.  I guess there's no point  
going through all the things I don't    
like about this mag (again).  Let's just
say that issue 14 is more of the same,  
so if you've read the previous issues   
you know what to expect.  Anyway, if you
need a good laugh, check out the charts 
and the diskmag reviews.                
Issue 55 of Publication is also quite   

similar to the recent issues: bugs,     
coding articles and some reviews.       
I really wish they could fix the magsys,
because it's still a nice idea, but     
I'd hoped that the idea would also be   
implemented in a decent way sometime.   
Unfortunately they keep pushing         
out issue after issue with the same     
The highlight of this issue was of      
course Nightlord's inspired report      
from Floppy.  The other article that has
to be mentioned is Richard's confused   
history of the demo scene.  I have no   
idea why he wrote it at all, but the    
concept of writing articles about stuff 
you know nothing about is well beyond   
my comprehension.  Zeitgeist should     
have done his duty as editor and skipped
this one.                               
And just when I thought all the text for
this issue was finished, another issue  
of Arachnophobia (34) was released.     

First of all, it was nice to see a      
decent intro (by Cactus).  Now I'm      
just wondering why it wasn't linked to  
the mag.  Cactus used the 'l' word in   
his comment over at CSDb.  Oh well...   
The contents consist of the usual stuff,
like editorial (actually 2 of them, of  
which the first one also includes some  
pretty pointless reader reactions with  
replies, you know the type: "Great mag, 
guys, keep improving!" "Thanks for your 
valuable input, pal!"), party reports,  
charts and interviews.                  
Unfortunately everything is, as usual,  
very uninspired and uninteresting.      
The party reports are of the usual      
"we took the car there, we entered      
the party place, we went to McDonald's  
with GoatBoy" etc., the interviews only 
contain boring standard questions (and  
the people interviewed aren't exactly   
people who do anything interesting),    
and so on.  Or, well, there was some    
unintentional humour here and there,    

like Nafcom saying "I am totally        
satisfied with myself".                 
One detail I found a bit funny was      
this comment in the charts chapter:     
"Twoflower sharing with Duce the fourth 
place but I haven t seen a cover from   
him,  Is he a real cover painter?"      
I guess it wouldn't be too difficult    
to check CSDb and find out that, yes,   
Twoflower is "a real cover painter".    
I guess it's details like this one      
that makes the editors seem so sloppy   
and ignorant.  There are other examples 
as well, like misspellings of people's  
names in the charts and the strange     
statement that Crossbow "doesn't do     
anything for years".  Doesn't "Don't    
Meet Crest" count as doing something?   
On the positive side, there's an unusual
number of tunes to listen to, if you're 
into that kind of stuff.  They've also  
switched back to the old type menu,     
which I appreciate, especially as it    

shows that they actually listen to      
their readers.                          

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