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dosbox tips / how
to run dos demos

(jap. version)

demos and demoscene


demos are normally self-running (realtime calculated!) programs and are typically showing a good mix of effects, design and graphics. in the most worth case all this perfectly synchronized to the sound (that was also made with a computer, for a long time mostly with trackers like protracker, screamtracker, fasttracker or impulse tracker. new demos are often using mp3's for sound). sometimes demos are even telling a short story. that sounds maybe not very interesting, but watching demos can be very fascinating. a high quality demo is really some kind of art and often it needs several weeks or month to create it. until the late 90s pc demos ran usually under dos, but nowadays they are mostly made for windows and utilize directx or opengl. there are also some flash and java demos. a special form of demo is the 4k or 64k-intro (intro because in the early years it was mainly supposed to introduce something like a new bbs, an invitation to a party or just seasons greetings). the size of the executable file and all needed data has not to exceed 4kb or 64kb (at least in a competition). you can find several examples on my download page!

a very useful page where you can learn more about demos and download them is
pc demos explained. on diver's page you can find screenshots and download links for newer (mostly windows based) demos. the site is fastly growing!
the demoscene consists from the groups which are programming the demos (in the scene called 'coding') and people like me which are fascinated watching this stuff. in the dos era demos were often made with assembler while nowadays c++ is the common language. naturally there are also people which are spreading the demos fast as possible in the internet and in the demoboards. of course, also the magic view was a demoboard, but i have closed it in spring 1999 due to the fact that the scene moved more and more to the internet.

is the demoscene only on pc?

no, it's the opposite. the pc demoscene growed from the early 90s on, but on the famous c64 (and later atari, commodore amiga or amstrad cpc464/664) it was starting many years earlier. the origin of demomaking was the cracking scene. after cracking a game or another commercial program (mostly removing the copy protection) the crackers released small programs in which they announced their success. later this changed and the main goal was to show what's possible with a specific computer hardware and/or a limited filesize. in the early years the demoscene set even new standards by using effects that were never seen before or by using new hardware like the gravis ultrasound card which was very popular among sceners for several years. nowadays demos are made mainly on the pc, but amiga and c64 are still alive. some people are also coding demos on gameboy, dreamcast or even for the display of a cell phone. my fascination for demos growed rapidly after watching the demo 'unreal' by the future crew. this was in 1992 and at this time the future crew was really the best group on the pc. since this time the quality of the demos raised dramatically and nowadays there are very much demo groups all over the world. but also the hardware must be better and better nowadays. a lot of the newer demos will only run on a pentium-III or better in an acceptable speed.

where is the origin of the demoscene?

in the opposite to all other things that have to do with computers, the origin of the demoscene is not in the usa, but in europe. and in europe in the nordic countries like finland or sweden. especially on the pc finnish groups have dominated the scene in the early years, but nowadays there is a big scene in several european countries (of course also in germany) with on demoparties successful groups. the scene in countries outside europe is still mostly quite small and north america still a developing country when it's about demos.

demoparties - big halls full with computerfreaks

the high spot of every demofreak are the demoparties, and nowadays there are many of them. at these gatherings the groups will compete with their newest productions, but always in a friendly atmosphere. the demos will be shown on a big screen and the voting is done by the visitors. the biggest parties and also the parties with the longest tradition are the assembly in finland (since 1992) and
the party in denmark (1991-2002). nowadays more than 4000 people are coming to them, unfortunately also many gamers which are mostly not very interested in demos. the smaller parties will often have the better atmosphere and in the last years many top demos were released at these small or midsize parties. in central europe the wired party (has nothing to do with the magazine) was successful in the mid to late 90s, but in 1998 it was held for the last time. with the evoke and the mekka/symposium there are since several years also in germany very good demoparties. since 2003 mekka/symposium is named breakpoint and actually it's the biggest 'demoscene only' party without a commercial feeling like at assembly or the gathering. when you will come to one of these parties, you can be sure to see several very good demos and you will also have very much fun :-).

this will be enough for now. if you found my little page interesting, then tell also other demofreaks about it :)