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BitJam 214 - Out Now!

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VR002 - Viewing Recommendations from 2008

on Thu 12 Feb 2009 by evilpaul author listemail the content item print the content item create pdf file of the content item

in Demoscene Outreach

comments: 0 hits: 6310

2008 was another great year for the demoscene with some memorable "future classics" being released. Not only did we see a bit of life returning to the 64k categroy, but we also saw massive strides being made in 4k demos as well as the new category on the block - 4k executable graphics. Here we've gathered together fifteen of our favourites from the past twelve months:


Stargazer by Orb & Andromeda

One of the standout PC demos of the year. The clean, modern rendering style belies the fact that this demo has its roots in the old school demoscene, with several references to classic effects and themes.
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Midnight Run by Andromeda Software Development

We don't think that everything has to be cutting edge 3D to make a great impression. Watch this PC demo which combines vivid 2d imagery and a mellow, hum-along soundtrack with ASD's usual high quality design and story and we reckon that you'll agree with us.
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Inflorescence by MFX

A great, spine tingling atmosphere and a grimey soundtrack provide the backing to this visually impressive, psychadelic trip from the masters, MFX.
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Pimp My Spectrum by Ate Bit

With the PC 64k category falling by the wayside over the past couple of years, the Spectrum scene steps in to give it a kick up the backside with this - a Spectrum emulator plus a demo, running on a PC and all in just 64k.
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Panic Room by Fairlight

...and just when we thought the PC 64k scene was being overrun by the 4k scene, along come Fairlight with this glorious return to form. Showing excellence in all areas - music, graphics, code and design - this is surely one of the most impressive 64k demos ever made.
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Atrium by TBC & Loonies

Another standout of the year, this 4k PC demo shows just what you can do achieve with just simple cubes if you put your mind to it. The soundtrack and design elements are not to be overlooked either.
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Receptor by TBC

Excellent drum'n'bass soundtrack, heavily synchronised with the effects in this great PC demo... and all in just 4096 bytes of code!
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Slisesix by RGBA

A relatively new category, "Executable Graphics" forces the creators to write tiny programs that generate the most fantastic looking images. The thumbnail image above (and bear in mind that it's a low-res, compressed version of the real image) takes up 72k - the code that generated it just 4096 bytes!
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Edge of Disgrace by Booze Design

Pushing the Commodore 64 beyond the limits that we thought had already been pushed far enough.
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Aeon by Triebkraft & 4th Dimension

Sneaking in quietly at the end of the year, this ZX Spectrum demo uses several different coding techniques to produce incredibly colourful results.
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Craft by LFT

What do you do when you don't fancy making a demo on any of the standard computer platforms? You build your own!
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ZINE #13 by Brainstorm & Bitfellas

The latest release of the long running digital magazine, Zine. Contains dozens of articles about the demoscene and interviews with the people in it. Download and run the PC executable for the best experience, or just dive right in to the online version.
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Linger in Shadows by Plastic (.pl)

A great crossover demo this one - appealing both to demosceners and console game players who have never even heard of the demoscene. Previewed to the demoscene audience in March, it was then released on the PS3 later in the year. Downloadable from the PlayStation Network it created a bit of controversy by being a demo that you could pay for - something that went against the "evertything for free" ethos of the demoscene. You can still watch the preview video for free though, and that's what we provide a link to below
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HBC-00004: Field Trip by 1/2-Bit Cheese

New in 2008, 1/2-Bit Cheese have been wowing us all year with their high quality animations. Combining great humour and characterisation with an obvious skill in their chosen medium, this group is one to watch now and into the future. We had a hard time choosing just one of their animations to recommend, so make sure you check out the rest of their releases here.
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ETA by Junk

Last, but by no means least, this atmospheric animation from Junk had us spilling our coffee all over the place...
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Further reading...

If that's not enough for you, then here are some more demos from 2008 that we recommend you check out too. Don't forget that, once you've followed the link, you can click on the blue text items surrounding the screenshot to find downloads and videos as well as more demos by the same authors.

Another quality 2D PC demo - Masagin - Nvision 08 Invitation by Farbrausch & Neuro

Drum'n'Bass'n'lashings of style - Only One Wish by Fairlight & The Black Lotus

Just what can you do with 256 bytes on a PC? This! - Neon Station by Digimind

Keeping the Amiga spirit alive - Surfing Great Victoria by Nature & Traktor

More Amiga goodness, this time in just 4k - Psylteflesk by Ephidrena

Another great 4k PC demo - Nucleophile by Portal Process & TBC

RGBA show that they are masters of 4k procedural graphics - Ixaleno by Rgba

Third in the series of these great Vic 20 demos from PwP - The Next Level by PwP

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