Saturday, 21 August 2010

Happiness is Around the Bend by ASD

"Let's all emerge from the great sea... of art."

Clearly the winning entry of the Assembly 2010, it is also the kind of demo that captures your feelings and imagination from the very first scene.

That particular scene starts with an underwater sequence and for the next eight minutes we are being told an astonishing, yet quite true, story of how the mankind suffers through the modern period and how, with the influence of the art, the man can retain his sanity, and most important his humanity, over this tough era. By first watching the demo, the meaning of it might not be conceived, but after several views the main plot becomes quite clear in the viewer's eye.

From the visual point of view the demo features amazing graphics, which are enough to fill the entire scene to the very bone, but are structured in particular way and flow that will not tire the viewer or lead him to boredom. The scenes are also transitioning smoothly making each one of them clear, not incoherent and certainly well connected to the previous one, since the viewer is not experiencing the transition abruptly.

In musical terms the demo features a more artistic soundtrack, with the real world characteristics of music, such as conventional instruments, or church prays something innovative and, let's put it simply, real. The music this time seems to be led by the visuals, resulting to the first being fit perfectly to each scene.

The most astonishing fact about this demo, is the immense impact it has on the viewer's feelings. It is not only a coder's, musician's or graphician's demonstration of skills but also a try that creates a powerful emotional connection between the person who is watching and the artist, who put not only effort but emotions inside it, something the modern art seems to often forget. The viewer is blasted not with effects but with feelings, feelings that may once experienced in their life but failed to remember since the modern lifestyle imposes so.

In conclusion, this demo has the core meaning of what we call "art". Combines visuals, music and plot all with one purpose: to generate emotions to the viewer. It is certainly recommended to watch it, since it contains the essence of what we must certainly not forget: humanity.


YouTube video.

Prod link on Pouet.

Monday, 21 June 2010

Computer Candy Overload by UF & DD

"Let this demo and Assembly start with a great explosion... of pixels."

That is the exact way this nice invitation for Assembly 2010 chooses to start. Immediately afterwards a colorful scene with a tunnel and tinct shadered objects follows making the viewer's eyes blink in astonishment. The next scene reveals to us why was the name 'Computer Candy Overload' given to this demo. The scene features plenty of candy bars in the background while a column of joint together computers appears in the middle. The phrases 'Candy Computer' and 'Candy Overload' can be heard repeated from the soundtrack while they appear with a fancy font on the screen. In the very next scene we view a colorful modeled city with cubes floating above it while the demo invites us to Assembly 2010.

The following part contains a model of the Earth bouncing synchronised to the beat of the soundtrack, while a satellite and a disco ball orbit around it. The screen changes to what seems to be a monitor that sends a message to the people at @party to continue partying. Next part are the greetings-to-other-groups where we view many names from the old days with a not so modern, yet modern adapted, effect. Then follows another tunnel scene with colorful shadered objects and a shadow of an electro-girl tasting a battery. The demo ends with the full information about the Assembly whilst the sound of the famous World Cup Vuvuzelas echoes in our ears.

The invitation itself can only be characterized as an explosion of colors, in which the pixels are stretched to their limits. Along with a fancy soundtrack, which perfectly matches the style of demo, it invites us to Assembly with a rather fancy and stylized way. The visuals are also filled with color, which makes the viewer's eyes to literally bleed from the glow and the saturation they contain. The only negative asset of the visuals was the fact that the two tunnel scenes were crammed with objects, an effect which would tire the eye of the middle viewer, but would certainly please the hardcore one.

In terms of the event depiction, the demo contains all the important elements that an invitation should have. It is colorful, with a catchy soundtrack that promises the viewer of a party that must be an unforgettable one. The use of the vuvuzela sound in the last scene of the demo, is a quite clever addition which adds an epoch touch to the very invitation. We all know the sound of the plastic horns that echo in every match of the World Cup. It is a nice point were art, demoscene and a fact of the real wold are all combined together to appeal the viewer and remind us that art is mostly affected and inspired by events of our world.

In conclusion, this invitation is a perfect mixture of color and sound, which pleases the hardcore viewer better than anything, and denotes the great demos we are expected to see at Assembly 2010.


YouTube Video.

Prod link on Pouet.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Abandoned by One Man Group

"What is not abandoned is never completely lost."

That was the ending phrase of this particular synthesis and something which completely motivated us to write this review.

The demo starts with small black-dotted liquid particles followed by a giant spike-ball effect, where in the very next scene those two are merged together in great harmony. After this scene, the following one bears two colorful-textured, but bare, plants. The demo changes the whole background to a dark liquid one, with a cherry-red liquified object. The object seems to forward from the deepness of what appears to be an ocean, to the light, with a scene featuring a city where a sun is rising.

The demo visuals are quite awesome, although we do not see a plethora of effects there. The camera moves, are quite artistic and they are responsible for this slow but directive view of the scenes. The music also slow progresses but certainly has that inner beat, that captures someone's attention. The demo in general is calm, this is caused mainly by the music, but in some moments seems to accelerate for a few seconds and then again returns back to its original pace.

The plot is depicted throughout the whole demo, without the second becoming repetitive or off-balance to achieve the so-called plot standards. The start and the ending of it certainly lead to a particular conclusion which is revealed by the demo itself. In a few words the plot leads to what the ancient Greeks named Catharsis, which is the emotional cleansing of the audience and the characters in an optical performance. Therefore the feelings it left us with, were definitely relaxation and a sense of completeness.

In conclusion, with its relaxing plot, music and visuals certainly is recommended for those in bad temper or those who are in a moody or stressful day, and this mostly because of the calm and slow atmosphere it creates.


YouTube video.

Prod link on Pouet.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

1 by Masters of System

"A complex system of cubes... but only this."

When we laid our hands on this particular demo, we were mostly filled with curiosity to the bone.

-Why 5th place?
-Is it such a bad demo?
-And if yes why is that?

The best thing we had to do was to run it and so we did.

In the screen appeared what seemed to be a complex system of cubes. Or to put it that way: two-three cubes, the one inside the other, and some gears in them. The lighting of those objects went mad as the music continued to play. The demo though did not progress, the same scene was rendered in front of our screen again and again along with the same repetitive music theme. The only difference to the demo was made only when the credits screen appeared, but that effect was only a grey dotted plex superimposed on the previous screen. And somewhere there the demo ended.

The visuals could be great if the lighting was a bit reduced on the those objects, although the music was quite repetitive and not memorable. Also, the demo could have had more potential if it contained more scenes or one that would be visually and soundly connected to its surroundings.

The feelings it left us were quite clear. We felt quite disturbed of the fact that such a solid product was wasted with only one scene, which was missing the so-called eye-candy. Although this is the very first production of the Masters of System, we believe that in the following years they will continue to create demos that will properly please the hardcore viewer.


Thursday, 6 May 2010

2:20 by Farbrausch

"The feeling of fear... depicted somehow."

A demo that starts with the moon and black clouds is certainly one that will immediately capture your imagination. In the next few minutes we view a haunted-house, a haunted car, and a clock ready to switch from "2:19" to "2:20".

By the time we saw that one, our excitement had reached crucial levels especially waiting the clock to reach the "2:20" minute (note: this is the name of the demo). While we were all prepared for something quite amazing to happen afterwards, the demo continued to its previous style. Relaxed, well-connected scenes, but no excitement, no plot evolving and the like. Our disappointment grew a bit bigger, when the music didn't change too much from its original pattern, although we have to admit that it fitted the demo perfectly.

The visual part of it was the one that completely drew our attention. The scene with the ghost girl under a tree was completely our favorite here, not to mention the one with the red artifact diving into of what seemed to be like a lake with the moon over it. The ripples created and the whole texture of the water itself is simply, a master piece.

The demo returns to the very first clock scene, zooms into a picture, particularly into the frame of it, revealing the name 'visualice' and then we see an old phonograph with a disc playing on it. And it just ends.

The feelings it creates are quite mixed. First, the overall eerie felling is something that we would certainly be fond of, if the music progressed a bit faster, still is the most memorable thing in the whole demo. Second, the atmosphere reminds of the old films that involved ghost haunting into strange places, and this certainly gets the thumbs up, although the first feeling of excitement and then the loss of it are a bit disappointing and this hurts the demo in general . Also, the slow progress of the plot sometimes makes the average viewer to feel a bit annoyed expecting more groovy music along with nice synced visuals.

Overall, is a demo that should be watched but without expecting a fest in front of your eyes. It certainly matches a bad mood, although the taste that leaves you afterwards is quite a sweet one.


Saturday, 1 May 2010

YouShould by Haujobb

"In some seconds to Evoke 2010 you could watch this invitation."

Apparently this is the very action we should all do before Evoke 2010. The demo starts with a promising screen counting down the seconds remaining for the demo party to start while we see some suggestions about what we could in those seconds.

After this first screen the next part of the demo arrives, still suggesting us what we could do in the remaining seconds before the Evoke, but this time we see those suggestions actually take place in front of our screen. "You could add ribbons.", the demo declares and black ribbons and other effects pass by the scene.

"You could fly by static geometry." and we enter into a 3D scene that consists most of a circular room along with other animated geometry. While, someone would think of another 3D flyby demo, the next scene is completely beyond expectations. The demo renders a 2D scene of robots destroying a city with a logo at the top of a building where we read: "You could go 2D."

What follows next is the greetings-to-other-groups scene with most of the group names formed by a cylinder with random circles filled with letters. Another 2D scene with the middle-back of a woman and then some effects such as light points. The demo returns to the previous static geometry scene, enters into a polygon, and liquified particles appear in the internal part of the volume. The last scene of it is another 2D with the "Haujobb logo" on the dorsal side of a hand which seems to belong to a quite muscular person. The name of the demo, the name of Evoke, and the happening date appear to the back of the man, while it ends with the phrase, "We did it." and the names of the artists.

In a more critic view, the demo has a quite artistic atmosphere and leaves us with a pleasant feeling. It combines relaxation with some bits of action, without the first interfering badly with the second. The music is also calm in some scenes, but becomes intense in some others while the visuals are enough to please both the middle viewer and the most hardcore one.

Overall, is an invitation that can be watched multiple times with the same feeling of excitement as the first time even after Evoke takes place. "You could view it, without being bored, for sure."


YouTube video.

Prod link on Pouet.