Written by Toms for Push'n'Pop
Being the largest pure demoscene event since 2011, the Revision party was the place to be during the last Easter week-end! Up to 1000 people coming from all over the world met in Saarbrücken/ Germany once again to have fun while discussing and discovering new stuff on the big screen... Let's go for 72 hours in the 4th dimension!
Like the previous years, I couldn't come on Friday but fortunately the Revision staff provided as usual a live stream for the lazy sofa sceners, so I could sometimes have a look at what happened at the party place. And what a surprise! Just when I switched on the outdoor live stream, Hicks was passing in front the camera carrying 2 CTM. Yes, we are synchronized brothers!
Let's go to the party!
D-Day! After having packed the car with my CPC and dropped my wife at the train station, I took the road to Saarbrücken hoping not to lose my way this year! Living near Strasbourg/ France, the journey was short (1h30) and I was quickly there. It's always very exciting to see the E-Werk with the Revision banner and some demoscene animals all around! Right after having paid my ticket fees and got the party guide and some earplugs, I tried to find the Amstrad sceners already there. Eliot/ Benediction, OffseT/ Futurs' and Hicks/ Vanity were having their lunch near the infodesk, so I arrived at the right time! Rocked by the "Tracked music" competition (won by h0ffman), OffseT and Hicks started to talk about the CRTC registers' names while Eliot was enjoying his light meal: chili with French fries.
Left to right: Hicks eating, Toms posing, Eliot praying
Hicks, who was the first of us in the hall, chose a good place facing the big screen and near the middle walkway (and far enough from the loud audio system). As OffseT (Antibes/ France) and Eliot (Coutances/ France) travelled by train, he brought 2 CPC for them. Exin was next to us with a Japanese computer (NEC) but he didn't do anything on CPC (he came 5th in the "ASCII/ANSI" compo). Factor6 was there too and managed to win the "Executable Music Oldskool" compo with a ZX Spectrum tune. About the music competitions, the author's name was hidden in all them this year to avoid name voting, which is a good thing. However, I wonder why the organizers didn't do the same for the graphics competitions. RufUsul visited the Amstrad area to ask some questions about the current development way, then Eliot showed him his HxC plugged between his keyboard and his PC and the tools the Benediction team uses. Just behind us was the French corner with especially Rouquemoute, Rez and Made. The latter, who came 2nd in the "Modern Graphics" compo, is still interested in the CPC and thinks about technics to do some new stuff. Sadly, there were no CPC entries in the "Oldskool Graphics" compo... This one was of a high level with an amazing picture on Amiga by Slayer/ Ghostown. It should motivate the CPC artists to submit their work, even the ones who sleep under the sun (in Guadeloupe for example)!
When the thunder comes by Slayer/ Ghostown
OffseT and Hicks talked about the future of Quasar Net to make it more alive: translating the website in English, giving some articles originally published on Push'n'Pop and writing new ones. It's a good news as Quasar Net is a well of knowledge and a coding reference! They were interrupted by the beginning of Knoeki and glxblt's DJ-set. About the live acts, I felt a bit disappointed this year because there were only DJ-sets. Where is the diversity? Last year was perfect with more different music styles (Romeo Knight, SIDrip Alliance, h0ffman and Knoeki). In addition, as the oldskool attendance is large, the organizers should think of inviting a chiptune musician to perform on stage. I hope to be heard for Revision 2014!
Before starting the compo night, we decided to gain strength by having new food experiences. Eliot hesitated a long time to order a sweet pancake stuffed with salami, but finally no. I wonder why. The excitement at that time was very strong as the new Vanity demo was going to be presented on the big screen very soon. Being teased by Rhino in Batman Forever, the Vanity team worked during 2 years on their demo as an answer. That's why the expectations were very high on the CPC scene!
Do you feel the excitement of these CPC sceners?
The night began with the Amiga intros and I have to say that Thrice by Dekadence was breathtaking! So many great effects in 64k! It wasn't a surprise that it managed to get the 1st place! Subliminal message to Britelite: we are still waiting for you on CPC! Right after, the PC 4k intros followed and I admit that Okkie would have deserved to win the compo. Indeed, during a mute intro he started a beat box performance in his microphone which set on fire the crowd! More seriously, there weren't any notable intro, the winner was kohlenstoffeinheit by Akronyme Analogiker who already won last year with similar stuff. Finally, the "Oldskool Demo" compo was about to begin! I tried to reassure Hicks who felt a bit stressed fearing an unforeseen problem during his demo. A lot of people were waiting for the Lemon.'s comeback who had been absent from the demoscene for 20 years. Paradroid worked on an enhanced version of the famous Rink a Dink released in 1993, and he did it perfectly! Rink a Dink: redux is probably one of the best Amiga OCS/ECS demo ever! The crowd was crazy when the demo began! The other masterpiece of the compo was Still Rising by Vanity on CPC. Full of technical records (zoomscroll and rotozoom) and effects never seen before (plasma-zoom, lighted rubber bar), it was perfectly designed with graphics by Beb and rocked by a tune by Ultrasyd/ Brainstorm. It got a lot of success with the public, an enjoyable moment! We could also watch Straff by Spaceballs (I love your style!) on Amiga and Crowd Pleaser by Hitmen (excellent physics) on C64, which both were amazing. This competition was top quality, the one which I enjoyed the most without any doubt!
Vanity is back!
Back in the Amstrad area, we asked Hicks to show us Still Rising again on the real hardware. And what a surprise, a bonus was lying on the disc, a mysterious cracktro made by Pulpo Corrosivo... While we were reading its crazy text, Hicks uploaded Still Rising on Pouet to share it with the whole demoscene. Time to have some strong coffee in order to face a night of demomaking! Like the previous year coffee and tea were free, a great initiative! I started to talk with OffseT about files transfert between PC and CPC and my difficulty to get a CPCBooster. As I especially need to transfert light files (sources backup), he advised me to use an old solution: a cable plugged in the tape port and in the PC microphone input (or headphone output). Slow but perfect! Thanks again OffseT! We continued our discussion by talking about the 3" discs quality which would be better than the 3.5" discs (especially HD ones). At the same time, some sceners (Okkie, Kusma, Knoeki, Kalms and Tjoppen) were analyzing the Oldskool entries in the compo studio. It was fun to learn they thought that Batman Forever and Still Rising were released on MSX! As the coffee effect was disappearing, I decided to sleep some hours under a table. I have to say that the E-Werk's floor is still very hard!
The compo studio
Sunday morning, crappy floor!
I started the morning by visiting the famous infinite tunnel to go to the toilets and I discovered that half of the WCs were out of order! Shit! As the hall was still quiet, I took advantage to have a look on the different available platforms all around: Amiga 500, Amiga 1200, C64, Spectrum, Atari ST, etc. Very enjoyable! OffseT, who slept at the hotel, arrived fresh in the hall, his pockets full of cakes he stole at the breakfast buffet.
The wrong machine to do the best demos :)
We met Doz (Sugarlumps coder) who told us that he had not time enough to finish a CPC intro, but he still works on his FPGA project. He showed us a prototype which is very impressive! And it's very tiny!
Doz's FPGA running the Pulpo's cracktro
During the week-end, some flyers to advertise the incoming demoparties were distributed including the Arok, an 8bit party in Ajka/ Hungary from the 5th to the 7th of July. Thanks to the large audience, Revision is a perfect place to advertise an event with some flyers or an invitro. Eliot, you should think about it to promote the next ReSeT!
Eliot had to leave the party in the afternoon while some people wanted to watch Still Rising on a real CPC. Some of them wanted to ask some questions to the coder of the demo, but Hicks was not there. So OffseT tried to impersonate him, but failed because he told that all the stuff was coded with Maxam's assembler!
While the Graphics and Music compos were running, I was trying to improve my code to display a circle (for an incoming intro), Hicks was working on the next Vanity demo (which will be released at ReSeT #10) and OffseT was testing his emulator ACE running Still Rising (of course, it worked!).
Hicks hacking Rhino's effects
To open the second compo night, h0ffman perfomed on stage for the 3rd time at Revision. I like the tunes he did in some Amiga demos, but I'm not fond of DJ-sets (I want some guitars and some chiptunes!). A lot of interesting competitions were planned on Sunday, beginning with the PC 64k intros. Last year, this compo was awesome with 3 outstanding entries (Gaia Machina/ Approximate, Felix's Workshop/ Ctrl-Alt-Test and The Scene is dead/ Razor 1911), so I had a lot of expectations! Except of Turtles all the way down/ Brain Control, I was totally disappointed. The following compo was the Oldskool 4k intros, which were only 3. Only 4krawall/ TRSI on C64 was interesting but not original enough.
The next compo was one of the most expected by the crowd, the Amiga demos! Few entries but 2 masterpieces were submitted: Smoke & Mirrors/ Ghostown & Loonies and Machinist/ Elude. Both of them impressed me a lot and I really enjoyed this high quality show! The demo by Ghostown & Loonies had some amazing graphics by Slayer and an excellent track by Jazzcat, while the one by Elude was technically astonishing. Go on guys!
The "PC demo" competition concluded the night with 18 entries! To be honest, except of 5 faces/ Fairlight (very impressive) and Exoframe/ Cocoon (Cocoon's comeback), they were all boring... Maybe, I'm too oldskool to understand :) However, I was happy about the collaboration between Rez, Made and Moby in Glenz Vector from Hell! I hope to see a more solid prod from this dream team in the future! Right after the end of the compos, I logged in the party network to vote for each category.
Before sleeping, Hicks and I tried to force OffseT to show us his part for the 30 years MegaDemo, but as he promised Zik to keep it secret, we totally failed!
Prizegiving, some more legendary demos
Already Monday! I was excited to discover the competitions results, especially in the Oldskool Demo category! Still Rising managed to get the second place, which is an excellent performance knowing that the Amiga and the C64 are much more popular than the CPC! Hicks went on stage to get his prize but sadly refused to make a pants-off. What a pity that Beb and Ultrasyd couldn't come, Hicks had to sign alone all the autographs. With Still Rising and Wake Up!/ Benediction (3rd in the "Oldskool Demo" compo last year), the CPC starts to be represented in large demoparties, but there is still a big amount of work to popularize it! Ghostown & Loonies won the "Amiga Demo" category (in my opinion Elude's demo deserved to win too) while Fairlight ranked first in the "PC demo" compo (to me, the only innovative demo of this compo).
Hicks with his trophy
Finally, we had to leave the hall after having spent a memorable week-end. Too bad about the cold weather, I couldn't enjoy the outdoor area very well. But as usual, the party was perfectly organized, and I must say: thank you to all the organizers! I'll be there in 2014!
Next CPC event: ReSeT #10 from the 28th to the 30th of June in Coutances/ France!