So. It's the late '80s / early '90s. What are people playing games on?
Friday, 24 June 2016
Thursday, 23 June 2016
So on April Fool's Day, 1993, Fox aired So It's Come to This: A Simpsons Clip Show (9F17) in their 4th season. In addition to numerous other gags, it included a montage sequence compiling a wide and varied selection of Homer Simpson's "D'oh" exclamations from the second and third season -- no fewer than 32 of them. At this liminal moment on the technological frontier, some genius digitized the audio track of the sequence, and it merrily circulated in a most postmodern fashion, bereft of any context or, indeed, meaning. For kicks, I assigned it as my family's Windows 3.11 shutdown sound -- slowing down the process considerably -- and for my troubles, I found the computer bedecked with a Printshop tractor feed dot matrix printer banner proclaiming my computer access temporarily revoked due to pranksterism.
Sami "PrOtoCol" Tammilehto of ACiD spent a little longer considering what was to be done before coming up with quite a more compelling application for these annoyed grunts. It was a painfully true cliche that audio samples from movies and TV were the tail that wagged the dog of lousy tracker music, like the medieval practice of masking the flavour of rotting food with inappropriate superdoses of strong spices, but their gratuitous overuse didn't necessarily apply 100% of the time... you can consider this track the virtuous 1 percent that broke through the cliche. The striking composition travels through several movements in a well-considered fashion, and would be compelling even in the absence of its raison d'etre (though that might make its closing drum roll somewhat perplexing.) The highest praise I can extend it is that it survives a detour through a tropical steel-drum mini-arrangement of Bobby McFerrin's 1988 mega-hit Don't Worry Be Happy. Because PrOtoCol was a fellow member (represent!) of ACiD (I, uh, should assume that everyone will appreciate the significance there: first major group of the PC underground artscene, first major ANSI art group, remained to a certain extent pre-eminent over everything that followed until the scene as a whole largely dried up by the end of the century) he also figured out a way to use silent samples to provide an animated textmode signature appear in the song's introduction when played in a music tracker program. Truly every aspect of this creation is polished precisely as far as it can be without running the risk of feeling baroque or ostentatious. I dare say people will still be enjoying the D'oh Boys Choir after they have long since forgotten ＳＩＭＰＳＯＮＷＡＶＥ. So now, without further ado, I present... the song!
And its sample messages:
--------------------------- homah simpson -and- da doh-boyz choir --------------------------- /c/ 8/1995 PrOtoCoL (ACiD) samples are borrowed from who knows. "don't worry, be happy" music by bobby mcferrin. all da rest by PrOtoCoL. play at risk to your own sanity. composed on screamtracker v3.21 by sami tammilehto. by the way, homer really says 32 consecutive "dohs" in the end. orders 1-12: homer's theme orders 13-19: homer sings the blues orders 20-25: homah & da boyz quartet orders 26-28: homer's 32-doh solo ___________________________ you may not be able to see the intro animation ░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░ ▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒ ▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓ ███████████████████████████ ██▄ █▀▌ █▀▄ ▐▌ ;) █▐▌ █ ▐▌ ▐▌ ██▀ █ █ ▄ █ ▄ █ █ ▄▌█▐▌▄█▀▐▀▌█ ▄▌▌▀▌ █ ▄▄ █ █ ▐█ █ ▐▄▌▐█▀ ▐▄▌ ▀█▀ ░░░░░░ ░░░░░░░░░▒▒ ░░░░░░░░▒▒▒▒▓▓██ ░░░░▒▒▒▓▓██ ░▒▒▓▓██ █
Wednesday, 15 June 2016
I've been there. If you don't like drawing hands, it's the only game in town! Sadly, there is no equivalent for Rob Liefeld.) If you ask me, a Necromancer is always considered GRiM. A memory washes over me: many years back, as a much younger nerd, reading The Hobbit in the back seat of my parents' car... when, there it was, my first encounter with the word "Necromancer". (I believe Gandalf makes some reference to his location in Dol Guldur south of Mirkwood.) So I says: "Mom, Dad -- what's a necromancer?" They pause for a minute, then reply: "A really bad guy that you don't want to have any business with." Great. This told me two things: a) my parents think their suggestible son is delusional, critical thinking faculties likely softened by all those hours misspent in front of a computer and playing RPGs, and can't tell the difference between what he's reading and the real world, and b) they don't actually know.
This is not as bad as the time I put down my Philip Jose Gardner Riverworld novel in the back of the car, tooling around somewhere in rural southern Italy, and asked them what "orgasm" meant. But I digress. All I can say is that I always kept the alt.sex FAQ in my home directory after that to avoid any repeats of that awkward conversation!
in Telemate to keep a text editor on the go while the other half of the screen displayed my online session) but things can get really busy, fast! The piece credits itself as an adaptation of Riggs' album artwork for "Stranger In A Strange Land". Kingpin remarks: " I painted Eddie at the end of last year. I was working on my masterpiece in 1993 which was the inside sleeve from 7th Son of a 7th Son, the crystal ball Eddie. I had the ball done and the rest sketched out but I lost it when my PC broke. :(" -- a scene I believe The Necromancer attempted above.And now, as a special bonus -- some C64 graphics!
And here for your further enjoyment is a selection of screenshots (thanks to Pouet.net!) from ... quite a few more Eddie-themed intros and demos from the C64, Amiga, and Atari ST, circa the late '80s-early '90s. Until I get caught up, full attribution of the files is indicated in their filenames.:
you can also find it on the cover of a ZX Spectrum shoot-'em-up, Bedlam!) (That was my own original research! I'm really enriching the corpus with all this, uhh, data.)
Ed Hunter or Iron Maiden: Speed of Light from last year!Congratulations, folks, in appreciation of your devotion and persistence to this niche subject, the long tail has delivered us an ANSI art coup de grace by Soul Assassin:
(For later sorting, a handful of further very early underground ANSI pictures:)