The trouble with a smaller party is that the ambitious demo categories tend
to come to not so much. In most cases, you are forced to reinvent the
competition structure according to what you actually get.
In this case, the combined or wild competition produced a very mixed bag.
Here we see a soundtracker, a blatantly fake or humour demo, a neat
animation, and a slideshow all in the same arena. It is really like putting
up a Polar Bear to fight an igneous rock formation, there can be no clear
winner!? I forgot to mention there is still one production missing from this
round-up. This is the single full demo which was shown at the party,
'Pacemaker' by Paradox. Of course, this will get its own separate review
when it is released in due course.
'Japanim'- (Various Frenchies, Paradize computing, gwEm. All ST/Falcon)
This is a strange one, yes strange, but uncommonly good! It is also a type
of demo we don't often see on the ST. This is a straight animation, from
start to finish, which blasts at the viewer for a the best part of a couple
of minutes at a hectic pace. The theme is based on a guy unable to get in
through the door marked "Outline '05", and his many attempts to blast his
way in, including some literally world-shattering efforts! In the end, he's
exhausted and defeated, then the door creaks open...
This is all done to an equally explosive soundtrack from gwEm. It turns out
that the demo isn't entirely original, being converted from an existing
animation. However, there is the niceness factor of something higher end
being converted to run on the ST. There is something like 700-odd frames on
animation crammed onto a standard double sided disk.
It works on both ST and Falcon, and is recommended to run from floppy to
keep the music synched with the effects. I didn't encounter any problems
with it running from hard disk though.
Japanim was a worthy second place in this category. I'd like to see more
gonzo animations on Atari!
Overall:- 75% - Fast action rules!
'Mental Pong'- (Yescrew, STS, gwEm, STe/Falcon)
We have here a demo which defies any attempt at a glib and easy description.
It has a start button, as if it is a game. There is a bouncing ball effect,
which sort of smacks of something demo-ish. Then there is a series of slowly
changing backgrounds, sort of like a tile effect which turns to something
else with each bounce, ultimately pointing you in the direction of a
The theme for mental pong is a tribute to some of the most famous games of
yesteryear. You are looking on it, as if the demo was running inside an
arcade cabinet, and the changing screens look as if they might start running
and playing the games they depict, for a moment?
The coding part is taken care of by Yescrew. There is an unusual approach to
the graphics by STS. The themes are all sunny and retro, there isn't a
bloodied corpse in sight! It's strange seeing his work in daylight! There is
a tune borrowed from gwEm, most recently heard in the 'Phatt' demo.
The demo runs, and you get a gradual changeover from classic pong, to space
invaders, through pacman and frogger. There are also greets overlaid on top
of these. Eventually, it is 'Game over'. But you do have the chance to go
again should you choose to do so.
Overall:- 60% - Nice and gentle production.
'Maxymizer'- (gwEm, All ST/Falcon)
What more can I say about this, when other more skilled people are reviewing
this tracker elsewhere. Well I can say it will probably be a hot contender
for being the app of the year! It certainly will poke itself just above the
very strong competition for soundtracker of the year. In fact, I think it
was floundering a bit, and out of context in a wild compo dominated by the
more light and easygoing entries.
It rules! I don't think we need to say any more.
Overall:- Superb! %
'Elvis is still Dead!'- (Dildo Fatwa, allegedly Falcon!)
Umm, okay, what can you say about this? Well it has pictures, several of
which are moving. Certain great and good personalities of the Atari scene
are represented here, with their lips moving. The scurrilous people behind
this "demo" put words into their mouths, or song.
Now if I was doing this demo myself, I'd have opted for some of the
extensive back catalogue of the famous seventies anorexic songstress, Karen
Carpenter, or perhaps some early Joy Division. Instead, they thoughtlessly
choose to mutilate the King himself, (Elvis, not Charles I!) They compound
this lapse of taste by picking on Kelis, who seems to have changed skin
colour, stopped being impersonated by a Frenchman, and acquired a singing
career, ever since she disappeared off the Mint scene. Amazing what you can
do if you put your mind to it!
Coming soon, to a wanted poster near you!
At least they haven't stooped as low as last Easter, with the plastic pantie
'poopshot' moment. I guess their sense of humour, if you can call it such,
is getting less coprophiliac at least.
Overall:- ?? % Hold mee tight!
CiH, for Alive Mag,April '05.