Friday, 25 November 2016

Video game appearances in recent artpacks, late 2016

Howdy! Long time no post, I know, I've been quite busy with a couple of projects -- which you'll be reading more about in today's post! I have more of our bread and butter, video game ANSI art, to share with you, but also high resolution fan artwork -- and even actual game assets and box art imagery -- to share with you. And all that... to a soundtrack of artpack-released video-game cover songs. Performed on accordion. Weren't expecting that, were you? These tunes are just a part of the oeuvre of Adam "An Historic" Matlock, and to fortify the 22nd-anniversary Mistigris artpack that we just released (just, as in, yesterday), I thought they would be a nice bouleversement -- culture originating from a digital source and then manifesting through traditional, analogue means. We skimmed a suite of tunes from classic late-'90s Square console JPGs and you can enjoy them all here in this post. This is, of course, Aerith's theme from Final Fantasy VII on the PlayStation 1, released way back in 1997.

But I get ahead of myself. The name you're used to seeing here, especially when covering recent developments in textmode artwork, is that of Blocktronics, the ANSI art mega-group. They had a Hallowe'en release last month and it did not disappoint! By which I mean, it contained not just ANSI art, but some ANSI art on video game themes. Here, for instance, is a 3D Space Invader by Enzo:

And from a the dedicated scholar of the oldschool, VileR (who you may recall from last year's Mistigris artpack) made the leap upstairs to Blocktronics with this piece, celebrating the latest iteration of The MS-DOS Collection with a handful of oldschool imagery made ANSIfied: in the distant mountains, the tanks from Scorched Earth duel endlessly; on the outskirts of the city (indeed, The City From SimCity 2000) a Kong-like simian, last seen in GORILLAS.BAS for QBasic bundled with MS-DOS 5, perches on a rooftop... meanwhile, rampaging through the streets brandishing a floppy diskette is Murphy from Supaplex. But why settle for my description, when you could drink it in with your eyes?
OK, that's it for Blocktronics for the time being(, and I'll mark the transition with another An Historic accordion track, the introduction to the Super Nintendo's Secret of Evermore from 1995). But my artgroup Mistigris also enjoyed a Hallowe'en artpack release, MIST1016. It featured no fewer than two pieces of spooky seasonal art inspired by Konami's vampire-slaying series Castlevania -- the first an ANSI art / HD photography mash-up experiment by Whazzit (who released many further similar pieces, fascinating despite being sans video game references, in the above Blocktronics pack). Here in a real-world church, an ANSI art Simon Belmont confronts an ANSI art Dracula, while ANSI art bats perch overhead. Basically, it's amazing.
Simpler, but still a splendid marriage of message and presentation, xer0 shared with us this (ANSI-less) glitched-up remix of a screen from Castlevania II. The message is intended to convey to the player that something has gone horribly wrong, but to a player, nothing would communicate that message more starkly than gameplay glitching out!
Which brings us to this month's Mistigris artpack, (Now playing: An Historic - Locke's Theme, from Final Fantasy VI for the SNES, 1994) which not only contained references to video games, but an actual game: Glitch by Chris Godber, which you can play here. But there were other intriguing goodies contained therein... consider the following, from the prolific desk of Starstew: a turtle playing Yar's Revenge on an Atari 2600:
And then we served up another VileR celebration of The DOS Collection all our own -- by wishing a happy 35th birthday to the IBM PC by invoking the game it included, Bill Gates' DONKEY.BAS ... which he also celebrated by making a tiny textmode re-implementation of earlier this year!
Next we have another piece by xer0, a bit of sprite art superimposed on an unrelated animation, leaving us with the curious spectacle of Luigi from Super Mario Bros. 3 endlessly running at raccoon flight speed across the surface of a record spinning on a turntable. This is an unlikely juxtaposition, as records were already a historical curiosity by 1988, the year of SMB3's release, with cassette tapes by far the market leader for music sales at least until 1991, when they were surpassed by compact disks. (See there, you didn't expect to learn anything from reading this post, did you?) Hence the title of the piece, I suppose: "Luigi is an OR hipster."
Here's a curio I jumped at the chance to share with the world: the original line art by artist Mark Ericksen for the unreleased game Nuclear Rush, for the unreleased Sega VR platform. It being so very, doubly unreleased, no one ever got a chance to enjoy his hard work... but it is undoubtedly video game-related, and so despite the glaring absence of those chunky pixels I know you all love so much, here it is!
Finally, MIST1116 contained something I'd been angling after for over a year, actual in-game art assets from Imaginary Games' 2015 mobile CCG Afterland, which featured the music of the Creaking Planks. Players just saw these things as little icon thumbnails on an already-small mobile screen, but I'd been to their offices and seen the full-sized originals hanging in frames and knew that the players were missing out not ever to see Elin Jonsson's artwork at a reasonable size... or, as is the case, quite a bit larger than you'd ever want to see on your computer monitor! The first is "Forlorn", and the second "Paria":
All that said and done, let's leave off with one more tune, An Historic's rendition of The Red Wings, from Final Fantasy IV for the Super Nintendo in 1991. Hats off to the artists, and here's looking forward to more inspired art derived from the realm of video games!

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Video game textmode art part 26: several beloved game series

Greetings all to another installment of Video Game Textmode Art! It's been a while since we had one of these "lazy" unthemed collections posted... all of the curation was done a long time ago, but the path from "a pile of content" to a completed blog post is surprisingly non-direct. I had a couple of these "miscellaneous" slush-pile posts floating around in draft form, and finding that a number of games were represented in both... painstakingly transplanted contents until I had loose groupings of games. It's becoming more apparent to me that in the fullness of time I will have to go back to a number of these entries and transplant pictures from one page to another to better keep the company of other ANSI adaptations from their game and series. In time... there will be order. But until then -- a heck of a lot of joyous chaos!

(An excerpt from "results.txt: the leakening" drawn by Farfar, moqui and Oni for the REVISION 2016 demoparty back in March. A nice joystick, a gameboy and some Mario-alia, well done!)

And that work hasn't been the only thing keeping me away from the old blog, of course -- I've been busy with artpack activities, not just writing about ancient textmode art but actively currying the production of more of it. The next month should see a couple of substantial artpack releases from my historical artgroup Mistigris, and though it may not necessarily give me a great deal to discuss here, I still consider it not only eminently worthwhile, but even higher priority than my sacred charge at Pixel Pompeii. This stuff can wait, it's not getting any more timely, right? (An it please you, you still have a couple of weeks to get a submission in.)

Cooling this blog off was a bit painful since my last major spree -- the PD spelunking series that ran practically daily in July.  I was reaching hundreds and indeed thousands of you, but only as long as I kept the pace up.  Of course if I don't have new content for you, you have no reason to check in, and I can rest confident that when there IS an update, your RSS readers... oh, wait!

That said, here we are, and here I have some video game textmode art for you. We'll go chronologically -- from 1978, here we have... Taito's raison d'etre, Space Invaders! ANSImated very, very slowly, for reasons known only to him, by Deater!

They get bigger and more colourful (thanks, RM!  Making this in 2011 means it's a modern masterpiece of sorts!)...

and bigger yet... (by Korma of DFS)

and bigger still!

OK, ok, let's move two years ahead to Namco's big splash, Pac-man. And to kick it off, another Deater ANSImation!

This Pac-man was devised an an exercise into adding colour into unix terminals:

Pac-Man might have had a little nibble of a Super Mario mushroom, as his size is undeniably increasing here (from the memberlist of the 50th Mimic collection)...

And Pac-Man also grows bigger and bigger yet... (by Watermelon of RCA)

until finally Pac-Man assumes the humanoid proportions and appearance allowing him to shed his iconic incomplete-pizza role and become a charismatic hero players can identify with (an excerpt of a larger, less-video-gamic piece by Ewheat of Apathy):

Onward to 1981, with Nintendo making its big splash with Donkey Kong in the arcades! This vision was machine-interpreted by the Retrospecs app, but despite being in a sense wildly abstract, the subject represented is still immediately identifiable.

And on to (Turtle of VOiD's take on) Rare's 1994 take on the shaggy ape from 1994's Donkey Kong Country for the SNES...

and DK's "little buddy" (I was looking it up... son? No, that's Donkey Kong Jr., who I was going to -- incorrectly -- say has been unseen... locked in the attic?... since his 1982 debut. Nephew? Whatever...) Diddy Kong. (Least satisfying revelation of subject clause ever.) (Drawn by Posyden of The Dirty Dozen.)

Time marches onward, and delivers us to another hardened veteran from Namco's cohort: Bubble Bobble from 1986. Here's a monochrome ASCII rendition of one of the two dragons (with no colours to distinguish Bub from Bob, I'm sure at a loss) by Sudden Death of CiA...

... and here, a somewhat rougher ANSI version that nonetheless makes it painfully clear who is who (by Cleaner from a MicroPHusion artpack):

Also from 1986 is New World Computing's CRPG Might & Magic. The skeleton here (by Liquid Image of iCE) is ringing strongly resonant for me with the ghoulish character on the box art for part IV of their series.

As for this party (by Aaon, also of iCE), I have no idea if they're adaptations of game art, or just another ad for the BBS using the game's name as its own, but here you have it!

And now we're firmly over the decade barrier and into the '90s (well, 1990 to be precise) with Toys for Bob's SF update of Freefall's Archon -- Star Control 1! This ANSI art adaptation of its wicked awesome box artwork is itself also wicked awesome (by the wicked and, presumably, awesome Black Knight of BAD.)

This is a close-up view (by Number Cruncher, also of BAD -- seemingly the most Star Control-appreciating artgroup out there!) of the Slylandro Probe plaguing its sequel, Star Control 2:

And in conclusion, a picture only Nootropic could bring to the table: a naked Spathi, unshelled:

And (sadly), that's it for Star Control -- though if any textmode artists out there would like a kickstart on a SC tribute before Stardock brings the 4th game in the series to market, I would love to hand off an incomplete ANSI WIP from Happyfish I've been sitting on since the Mistigris World Tour of 1997. But I digress.)

And if that awesome game didn't end up taking over the world (though its developers, Toys for Bob, sure did end up making a mint with Skylands!), these 1991 successors came quite a bit closer: it's DMA's Lemmings! (OK, Lemmings didn't end up taking over the world also -- I think someone hit the "nuke" button -- but DMA's follow-up Grand Theft Auto sure did!)

I don't know why, but these first two screens, above (by KuoYen Lo) and below, feature appearances of Lemmings drawn within level layouts for Epic Megagames' textmode ZZT.

Oh No! More Lemmings!  (Thanks for nothing, KP of iCE!)

and one more piece of Lemminging, by Abomination of Skill, before the main attraction...

Here we go, it's the Lucasarts revue! What we've all been waiting for: Purple Tentacle from 1993's (I know, in our closing act I'm messing around with the chronological conceit I've so painstakingly maintained) Maniac Mansion 2: Day of the Tentacle. This one is in ASCII...

... but here, we have a much nicer one drawn (by Tonto of Drool) as ANSI art:

But wait, there's more -- one of his three nemesises (nemises?) Laverne, drawn by the same artist and released in the same artpack! (I don't know about Bernard, but I'm guessing Hoagie didn't get drawn because the artist didn't know about making double-width .BINs...)

Here's an ANSI rendition (by fitzroy of TheLoop) of the Zombie Pirate LeChuck from 1997's Curse of Monkey Island!

And from Grim Fandango (1998, just one year later... yow!) -- the revolutionary skeleton Salvador Limones, drawn in Amiga-style ASCII by Hellbeard of Impure!

OK, there's your old-fashioned video game ANSI art grab-bag, just like this blogger used to crank out as quickly as he could!

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Øverfløw #000: Vancouver Chipmusic Showcase

Vancouver was on the ground floor of the electronic future -- not merely serving as homebase to Neuromancer author William Gibson, not just ground zero for Canada's first video game successes (the Sidney Development Corporation with Evolution and B.C. - Quest for Tire), not merely possessed of the longest-lasting and most populous dial-up BBS scene in the world (to say nothing of its pivotal role, albeit an accidental one, in phreaking in the early '70s), not just coincidentally the spawning ground of Gravis, Mainframe Entertainment Inc. (of "Money for Nothing" and ReBoot fame) and Distinctive Software (later to flourish as EA Sports) ... and it's been if anything over-represented by performance, conceptual and electronic arts through such hubs as the Western Front, Video In, and the Edgewise Electrolit Centre ... so why, in the 34 years since the Commodore 64 hit the stores, has it never enjoyed much in terms of a live experimental electronic performance scene?

Nettwerk in its earliest days enjoyed the scantiest of scenes around Skinny Puppy and Front Line Assembly, and sure, we hosted a couple of instalments of the "New Media" demoparty in the early '90s, and okay, we got raves filling our warehouses same as everyone else did, but basically... none of it ever amounted to much of anything! A few rooms full of people danced while whacked out of their gourds, but in the end things looked pretty similar to how they looked at the beginning.

So here we are in the 21st century and finally at long last those of us not living in New York, Berlin or Tokyo are beginning to have some options presented to us for public enjoyment of music that emerges from a SID chip or comes out of a Game Boy's beige housing. My old colleague bryface has been travelling the world as opportunity allows for the past few years, witnessing, networking with and learning from chiptune events and organizations all over the place, and I guess he's reached the point where he's concluded it might be nice to be able to enjoy a show without having to get on an airplane. I don't know if there is or is not any formal relationship organizing as high up as the Northwest Chiptuning Facebook group but for a hyper-local focus we can now look to the Vancouver Chipmusic Society to dish us all up a healthy serving of square, sine, and sawtooth waves (a static channel is extra, though.) (Do you think that they are an actually-registered society in accordance with the Societies Act of BC, with rules about membership and annual general meetings? We felt crazy when we registered our accordion community, which has to be at least as niche as chiptunes, but it was an essential step on the way to being able to tap into grant funding to support our activities. They can get away without registering for two or three years as long as they keep good financial records. But I digress!)

The Vancouver Chipmusic Society's flagship event will be dropping on the 604 next Monday night, September 26th, at the Fox Cabaret, with doors at 7:30 pm and bleeps and bloops until ... late. (Its calendar says midnight. Then an hour is reserved for FidoNet traffic, right?) You can find out all about the event, Øverfløw #000: Vancouver Chipmusic Showcase, over on Facebook. The featured live performers include Norrin_Radd, meckz, Fastbom, and that bryface character, plus Melodia (who just this week released a music disk of an hour and a half of .XMs thought lost forever in 1999!) and uɴɪᴄ⊙ᴅΞ (among others) will be audible as part of the open mic portion of the evening.

If you'd like more information and find my account of things a little too insider baseball, bryface did an interview on the subject for Roundhouse Radio and you can get another take on it over there. And now, I'll turn it over to their potted press release!



$12 online va EventBrite
$15 at the door


Introducing Vancouver's very own chiptune event series! Enjoy a night of live electronic musicians pushing the limitations of old gaming platforms' sound chips to create fresh music in a diverse range of styles - electro, pop, drum n' bass, metal, jazz, funk and everything in between. 

Experience the raw, crunchy waveforms of the NES/Famicom, Game Boy, Amiga .MODs, Commodore 64 SID tunes, and 16-bit SNES/Genesis-era samples pumping full-blast through the Fox Cabaret's pristine sound system. Prepare to have your expectations shattered repeatedly as these artists use and abuse these vintage platforms and formats in unexpected and forward-thinking ways.

This special first installment of the show specifically highlights our locally-based talent - a killer lineup internationally recognized for their individual dedication to the craft of chip music and the low-bit arts. Join us in the celebration of new life given to vintage systems - this is definitely a night for tech/synthesis/gaming enthusiasts alike.

// MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 26th, 2016
// DOORS OPEN 7:30pm | MUSIC STARTS 8:00pm
// $12 ONLINE/EARLY-BIRD | $15 AT THE DOOR | 19+

*** UPDATE SEPT. 8: *** The show has relocated slightly from the Fox Cabaret's Projection Room to the main stage! Huge thanks to the Fox for hooking us up with the extra space.


> NORRIN_RADD (Vancouver, BC)
> 16-bit soundscapes + Retro City Rampage OST mayhem

> MECKZ (Victoria, BC)
> insane progjazzclassical NES/famitracker mastery

> FASTBOM (Stockholm, Sweden)
> demoscene/cracktro-style Game Boy / C64 anthems

> BRYFACE (Vancouver, BC)
> eclectic + progressive Game Boy electrofunkbreaks

/// VISUALS: alterus (Victoria, BC)

Friday, 5 August 2016

Public Domain textmode art spelunking: Sports

1988 (?! Captured 1990 at the latest) ANSI art celebrating the Seoul Summer Olympics by Václav Pinkava. Nice rings! As the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio have just begun, I suppose I can put this post off no longer...
Sometime in September-ish 2015 I logged into Kirkman's SynchroNet telnet BBS The Guardian of Forever, to get an in-person sneak peek at the parallax-scrolling mermaid ANSImation Kirkman's technology had made possible and Whazzit had drawn sprites for, intended for release in the Mistigris 21st anniversary artpack. (Have I mentioned that we are currently soliciting submissions for the 22nd anniversary artpack?) Over the course of my account creation and login to this (formerly) private node -- then-intended exclusively for the use of him and his family (but now open to the public at telnet://, complete with other ANSI experiments!) -- I was exposed to some ANSI art (on a BBS? appropriate enough!) celebrating his family’s favorite professional sports teams (say what?!) ... and I was stopped in my tracks. In the whole of my dial-up BBSing career, which admittedly was only a 6-year window in the '90s, I'd never seen such a thing. The very notion that a computer nerd could have overlap with the obsessions of a sports fan seemed anathema to me. On further reflection, both fields' bottomless potential for aspie grasp over entire spreadsheets of abstract figures and esoteric minutitae make the existence of the "sports nerd" (like "health goth", a seeming oxymoron) reconciled as ... at the least, possible in my head. All the same, it's not something I saw any representation of in my years in the computer art underground, so maybe it's possible that celebrating these interests in this dovetailed way was something particular to the public domain ANSI tradition specifically.
This hypothesis was born out by the curations from's PD ANSI art slush-pile, which contained... a great deal of sports-related ANSI art, specimen after specimen out of all proportion to how prominently sports figured as an interest in the underground. Angling to give equal airtime to the newer, more iconic underground ANSI art tradition, I mined the Sixteen Colours archives for updates on the topic, but found myself turning up goose eggs for obvious searches for terms such as "Wimbledon", "hat trick", "Super Bowl" and "Home run". Perhaps it may not have been that artscene kids were anti-sport so much as that the '90s saw the rise of skateboarding, mountain biking, snowboarding and alt/extreme sports? (hello, bungee jumping, wakeboarding, B.A.S.E. jumping...) (and, ahem, e-sports.) The period saw entire sports industries on their way up or down in overall popularity through the period (hello, basketball and hockey; goodbye, baseball and football) as well as the micro case also: plenty of art celebrating local teams that no longer exist, as married to a particular moment in time as ANSI art itself was! 8)
Kirkman respectfully disagrees, by which he means that his local PD BBS community demonstrated a much healthier interest in sports than mine did:
I know every BBS scene was different, but I think there were plenty of sports fans calling BBSes, especially adults. Some BBSes ran “football pick-em” or “football pool” tournaments, for example. These were either run manually though the message bases, or managed by a door game. I participated in one on Flash BBS in St. Louis for a couple years.
Case in point, here's a piece by "ANSI-Mation!" for a fantasy baseball message base:
(Kirkman also has a note about the performance of his family's favorite teams: "FWIW, both teams have been very good this century. The Spurs have played in six NBA championships since 1999 (winning five), and the Cardinals have played in four MLB World Series (winning two)." But I digress.) The main attraction back in 1990 (and hm, actually, appearing somewhat stable today) was FOOTBALL, American-style. (I know, despite the Olympic hook I opened with, athletics and track & field events are basically totally unrepresented otherwise. Bait and switch! These are all pro league sports here today.) We'll start with some local appeal from the Seattle Seahawks. (Pixel Pompeii is based out of Vancouver, Canada; I could find no BC Lions ANSI art 8)
It is what it is! Or, in this case, what it was -- in 1996 the Houston Oilers (threw me for a loop, too! Dwelling apart from the land of sports, I forgot how teams name themselves after local industries... industries which are, of course, not exclusive to their area, Edmonton!) transitioned right out of their digs to become the Tennessee Titans! This one is credited to a mysterious JC about whom we hope to learn more later.
The date of creation of this one can be much more narrowly estimated, as the San Antonio Raiders only existed as a team from 1991 to 1992!
JC returns with a celebration of the Green Bay Packers. (Hm, and what's the story behind that name? Oh huh, more interesting than I might have thought!)
Here we have a little ANSI for a team with a most iconic name (courtesy of their legendary cheerleaders, none of whom included Debbie) the Dallas Cowboys. This one is also by JC, and I feel we have a big reveal coming up...
Tah-dah! Here is A JC, Joseph "Joey" Crum, who may or may not be responsible for all of these. (Maybe football ANSIs weren't actually all that popular, it was just one devoted weirdo slaving away at skewing the historical record?) Anyhow, he weighs in with another piece celebrating the Dallas Cowboys.
And who might the Cowboys pair off again? Why, nothing would be more metaphorically appropriate (if somewhat distasteful in our pre-postcolonial era) than a bout between the Cowboys and the Redskins!
And JC delivers us up more political incorrectness (well, it's not like he was the one who named the team!) with this piece for the Kansas City Chiefs. (And why is it, anyway, that if they aren't proud of the local industry a reference to subjugated local indigenous people is the Plan B for sport team names?)
And here, another ANSI by JC celebrating the San Francisco 49ers (whose inspiration I just had to research -- apparently named after fortune-seekers in the 1849 gold rush!)
Update: Atlanta Falcons? They had at least one ANSI-drawing fan in the Public Domain:
And one more update from the college sports ghetto, a football waiting to be carried across the end zone by Indiana's celebrate Notre Dame team:
Here's a piece promoting the New York Giants (whose membership, you may recall, included at one time defensive lineman Rosey Grier -- whose hobbies included the ANSI-alike needlepoint! My textmode art history is rigorous!)
The New York Giants are back, faced off against the Buffalo Bills (their logo is a buffalo, not a bill... missed opportunity!) - Mike Fuller used these TheDraw fonts to celebrate their conflict, and he wanted you to know it.
And a somewhat more impressive face-off, by Joey Crum, between the Giants and the Bills... which I guess also provides us with a time context for the previous piece -- Super Bowl XXV, 1991.
This piece isn't about any specific Super Bowl, but more the Super Bowl generally. Perhaps the aspiration was that it could see re-use annually. Sports: we acknowledge that they're too big for us to ignore, though we can't bother to mask our disinterest in them.
And a bonus, one completely modern specimen from classic teletext master Horsenburger:
And that's a wrap for Football, which the digital underground really couldn't give a fig about. Now on to America's passtime -- BASEBALL! We open this gallery with a logo celebrating the Atlanta Braves (really? Apparently the "Caucasians" jersey has been on the market for nine years now, but it's only just begun recently picking up steam... it's about time!) drawn by a name we've seen before in the PD ANSI sphere, George Ramos. (Whether Jr. or Sr. remains unclear!)
"Ben" shared with us this rendition of the Pittsburgh Pirates' logo, which disappointed me that it wasn't celebrating Sid Meier's nautical video game.
Kirkman has contemporarily generated a couple of logos for his local St. Louis Cardinals, and he wants to be up front about his tool-assisted technique: They are not "pure" scene ANSI. I cropped and converted the logos to GIFs with a particular palette, then used ansirez to convert them to ANSI. I did a bunch of cleanup on the logos, then drew my own text/lettering.
Me, I think they delivered great results (measured up against the Public Domain competition here), courtesy of the human touch regulating the output, and really any way of getting your ANSI on to your BBS in 2016 should be celebrated.
Edit: Oh dear-- to see what the underground did with the same subject matter, Sudden Death of CiA minted this rendition of the totally-racist Cleveland Indians mascot:

OK, so baseball was a bit of a dud. But here's a sport that was up-and-coming in the '90s: BASKETBALL! We open with a little ANSI celebration of the Detroit Pistons:
Next, another one by Kirkman, cheering on the San Antonio Spurs:
Ron Czarnik sets up an unfavorable comparison between Public Domain ANSI art and that of the underground (I can't help but suspect the bands of colour indicate an area where something was initially drawn with flashing colours -- perhaps a bouncing ball being dribbled?):
Straddling the worlds of all that was possible in textmode art in the early '90s, Jed of ACiD here closed the book on basketball-themed ANSI with this piece celebrating the vessel for Michael Jordan's contemporary b-ball greatness, the Chicago Bulls:
This is not to say that there were never again ANSIs drawn involving the sport of basketball -- this alien (?) basketball player is from the 6th Blender competition, which includes a good deal more spontaneous computer art on the subject of aliens and basketballs.
Update: an unexpected new piece of basketball ANSI from a new source -- the Public Domain vaults -- celebrating a new niche: college basketball. I'm not sure precisely which team of Rams this picture is celebrating, but my best guess would be Colorado State.
OK, I guess the basketball fans were spending more hours sitting courtside watching games than doodling tributes on their PCs. Next up we take a look at the world's most popular sport: SOCCER! Here's a goalie in net from a Black Maiden infofile:
And here, from a different infofile from the same Black Maiden pach -- a soccer pitch:
(To compare and contrast -- the same scene, rendered as two ZZT levels:)
(And now, from "Beck's Footy":)
From the other Maiden, the Brazilian one, Minotaur celebrates his Flamengo (FC) "football" club:
And also from Brazil, Enzo here is depicted in an iCE artpack memberlist as a footballer:
OK, so soccer didn't take us very far. Well, here we are in the last of the major international team sports: HOCKEY. We'll begin with a PD piece celebrating the Calgary Flames:
For contrast, here's Robin Vossenaar's tribute to the San Jose Sharks:
And a final nod from the Public Domain, an anonymous ode to the Stanley Cup prowess of the Toronto Maple Leafs:
Next up, Mindcrime of Blade cheers on the New Jersey Devils:
Maytag Man here uses ASCII art to boost the team which once were the Quebec Nordiques, moved in 1995 to become the Colorado Avalanche. It's over 20 years later and Quebec still doesn't have an NHL franchise, just beat out for one by Las Vegas. Go figure.
OK, hockey is such a relatively unpopular textmode art subject that sometimes it is actually drawn by accident!
Then there are other occasions where hockey players are drawn on purpose, but perhaps shouldn't have been.
And then, as if to put the lie to the notion that sports subjects are perhaps better off left undrawn-in-ANSI, we close with this recent masterwork by Blocktronics artist Whazzit (who more historically has found subjects from realms such as Dungeons & Dragons -- I can only speculate that in high school he could have been found beating himself up between classes), sketching in the small-scale -- like PD artists did, only awesomely. If we'd seen stuff like this 20 years ago, maybe all the ANSI artists would have been drawing hockey players instead of Spawn. You see, he can celebrate all the playoff teams... but he never forgets to root for his traditional home team:
Public Domain artists might have had more well-rounded athletic interests in such niche sports as bowling and boxing; I could find no artscene parallels:
And that's it, the final buzzer sounds, no overtime! Check back again soon to see what other interesting tidbits I'm able to pull out of the forgotten storage of ancient computers and their modern counterparts. Good game! Bonus: we opened with the 1988 Olympiad, let's end with the 1980 one, by Dman of Blocktronics!, via a quick stop through 1996:
(And can I resist throwing in this piece Nitnatsnoc drew for a "lost" Blender, likely the only reference to the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics in the entire artscene? No, no I cannot.)