Reviews

Germany's demo-scene event on Easter 1997 was a full success! 750 visitors, 600 of them already present on Friday, had good fun for 71 hours! The party was not like Symposium '96, it was not like Mekka '96 - it was something completely new; if it was better or worse is still to be talked about. We are looking forward to more reviews in disk mags and newsgroups! If you publish your opinion in one or the other way, we would be glad if you could send us an ASCII version of it!

A lot more reviews coming up soon!

by Lord/Impulse

                       SYMPOSIUM-MEKKA'97 PARTY report

                  by lORD / iMPULSe^aBSOLUTe!^cRIMSOnJiHAd

            Place: Fallingbostel/Germany  Date: 28-31, march, 1997


  We really disappointed in the biggest scene event in Tp5, with the friends
we visited it together. Wanted a party just to do what it's meaning means
and not to feel like in prison. Last year Symposium did it for us.
It was the best foreign party i ever visited! Not because of the number
of visitors (600 - this year a bit more perhaps), but i could felt that the
organizers were sceners and not those typical money hungry sharks.
This case there was no way for us to miss this year Symposium either.

 The partyplace was a big hall in a small german village north of Hannover.
Was easy to find it though first it seemed we won't be able to reach the
place when our favoured russian wonder, LADA Samara got a puncture in a
fucking ice-rain at 150 km/h speed on a german highway. Though I know, it'd
had been nice death to die in way to the party, somehow we survived and
arrived there.

The entrance fee (40 DM) didn't hit me that much (compared to the 65 DM TP6)
though in Hungary you get 50! bottles of beer for it. We started bringing in
our stuffs. My friend told to bring 2-3 bottles only first, just to be sure,
but i didn't want to train my leg and jump out for a new bottle each hour,
so rather risked and brought a whole bin of beer (12 litres) in. When we
opened the entrance, I thought they'd kill me for the bottles. but what
happened?! People at the entrance just wondered on the bottles (perhaps they
never saw 1 liter homemade beerbottles yet), but didn't say anything (except
a huuuuuuuh) or even didn't ask for any of our 'bread' as duty either.
I knew that certain minute, the organizer staff didn't change to the last
year, for sure.

 The first day went very fast. Opening ceremony at 20h (of course all the
speeches were spoken in English during the whole partytime, now - big
advantage to the last year), a concert at midnight (there were concerts
each nights! - 3 altogether - the best one was the one by NoiseDrift on
sunday - even i could have listened to it - i hate tekkno like hell) and
videos or something by night. At 2 o'clock the internet cafe closed down
and all the party aslept (that suxx a bit).

 All the compos were held from saturday evening-monday morning. It was a
great idea to separate them and not crunching those into one infinite night.
Big advantage also most of the compos were held in time (without usual major
lame PC config fuckups), because the contributions were shown from video!

 The party staff was the most friendly one i've ever met. They knew what
partying means, didn't forbid us drinking, reacted positivily for everything,
helped in everything (e.g we - Impulse - wanted to release an intro at the
party, but there was a kind of mistake in the limit - was shown on the
bigscreen 'ALL 64KB INTROS' and we told this size to the coder on irc -
but the limit for Amiga was 40kb (and only the pc was 64kb) as we got knew
later, and after we managed to get the intro from our coder through the
internet - with the organizers help again! - and we couldn't reach our coder
to modify it back to 40kb - take out the music or something - they didn't
send us to hell, they allowed us to compete without music, because it
would have fit to 40k without it. i don't think the organizers would have
reacted the same e.g at tp6, too! - thx for you RawStyle and the others!)

 The prizes for the compos were much higher then anybody expected i think.

E.g Amiga demo: 800 DM + CyberVision card (another 500 DM)
    Amiga intro:400 DM + Retina ? card (another ??? DM)
    C64 demo: 400 DM!!! + a power cartridge
    musics, graphics: 400 DM

I was really happy we didn't get at last a lame soundblaster/pc hardware or
so for our Amiga intro (2nd place)

Facilities: Perhaps first time in the history of the parties i visited i was
            able to burst down the manure of my body each party-day without
            feeling like on the north-pole because there was not warm, but
            real HOT! water in the shower (24h)
            the toilettes were cleaned quite often and there was no
            trash-diving around the tables either.
            the sleeping-room was not that big, but i always managed to get
            place there (Doc.Martens shoes rule)

There were no major disadvantages except perhaps i expected different music
styles on concerts (e.g i missed a real kicking metal/hard-rock band that
would have activated the scene for headbanging and shouting)
The floor was very cold to sleep even in sleeping-bags, too, though the
sleeping-room was just its opposite.
And it was not that good idea either, to hold the party exactly during the
Easter days, because none of the pubs nor whorehouses were opened (if there
was in such small village, anyway)


                         What shall i end with?!

            Why we need The Parties, if there is SYMPOSIUM, too!!!



PS: don't miss the Scenest'97 either, in 4-6, april, 1997, in Budapest/Hungary
    That's also a party (by Astroidea-Impulse) made for YOU, SCENERS !!!

by T.C.P./Diabolic Force

Mekka^Symposium '97 - A revision
--------------------------------
By T.C.P. / Diabolic Force


First there is to say that Mekka/Symposium '97 was a great improvement
compared to Mekka'96 (I can't say anything about Symp.'96 because I wasn't
there and I haven't found any Party reports).
M96 wasn't bad, especially the organizing, but this year everything was a
little bit more, hmm, big.
This might have been mainly because of the many non-PC people from Symposium
(I won't say if this was positive or negative ;). However, the party place
was already very crowded as we arrived (about 1 o'clock pm on Friday), so we
took place in one of the last rows.
As last year, the amout of attenders had been overguessed, only 750 people
were there, while 2000 had been expected.
The party place was not very central, and the promised McDonalds was about
ten minutes away - by car. And because of Eastern, one could only buy food
during seven hours Saturday morning, so everybody who wasn't equipped with
food for 4 days and a refridgerator (somebody really was!) packed his bags
and "stiefelted" into "town" (what Fallingbostel was called) to the Aldi
supermarket.
Besides this, the party was very cool, it had that special kind of feeling,
many krewl attenders, fun compos, prizes, an alcohol-prohibition to break,
internet-access for everyone (had been even cooler if it had worked ;),
live-acts (not THAT cool, because some people wanted to sleep or concentrate,
because they had to code (hi shadow!)), and of course all things which make
a scene party a scene party.
Quite annoying were those TVs all over which were running all day long,
showing pornos and people slashing PC-Hardware.
What I also have in mind were those people shouting the word 'ficken' loudly
during some compos. Dunno why ;).
The usual party network was also full of porno, and tons of warez too, which
seemed to be ignored by the organizers, but, hmm, I didn't see anyone
complaining ;).
Until the intro/game-deadline on Sunday I was very busy coding, so I missed
some of the compos, maybe I also have confused their order, though here is
what I can remember of...

The compos
----------
The compos started with PC gfx-compo, which was the first time including
raytracing, but it seemed that almost nobody contributed a rendered picture
(except our contribution, which became 16th, btw). 36 pictures were presented
and the leading three were:

1. Springtime Feelings by Cyclone/Abyss
2. Denis by Norm/Essence
3. Krysia by Sketch & Unreal/Pulse


Next was Wild Compo, I think, showing some very 'abgespackt' contributions.
Mainly videos, but also an animation and a real demo (don't know on which
system, guess it was a nintendo or so)

1. Ninjaforce MegaDemo by Ninjaforce
2. Chocolate Autobahn by Adam Parry
3. Obsterscherzbrief by In-Sect


On with 4-channel and ANSI, don't know the right order anymore.
Both weren't very spectacular, some hilights, but the rest all very plain
vanilla stuff.

ANSI:
1. Day-X by Leonardo/Black Maiden
2. The Edge by Mr 4Tune/CIA
3. Freefall by The Knight/Fuel

4-channel:
1. Culture Bag by Virgill/Artwork & Essence
2. Notion disaster by Barman/Capsule
3. Get High Together by Parsec/Elven Eleven


Then, some time later, the (delayed) PC 4k intro compo followed.
And what a 4k compo that was! Fucking amazing! Pinker/Sanction really rocked
the place with 'omniscent', a 'descent'-3d-engine in 4kb! With sound!!!
You have to see it to believe it! Well, after this, the other intros looked
very pale, although they weren't bad at all.

1. Omniscent by Sanction
2. HIAS by Ethos9, FINIX
3. Meyer 2 by Funk!


Next was multichannel. For Gods sake the organizers had chosen to do a pre-
selection this time, because last year's >30 songs with up to 5 minutes each
sucked!!! Very nice tunes here, indeed, although not very much variety in
styles.

1. My Spring in December by Falcon & Medicus/Pulse & KLF
2. Chaotic Mindwork by Dac/Sac, Radical Rhythms
3. Focus by Lord & Scorpik/Pulse & Noiseless
3. Elements II - Water by The Acid God/Diabolic Force


The intro compo was also very nice, some new effects, anyone seen 2d-bump-
mapping yet? ;). No, really, Purge's intro was a fabulous designed one,
and Funk!'s had one of the best 3d-engines I've seen lately.
You should really watch them.

1. Totraum 209 by Purge
2. Spotlight by Funk!
3. Velvet 4 by Fatal Justice


As usually, there was a fast intro compo. All entries should include something
about the silly convention, a radar trap and some grafitti. Well, this was
in most cases understood as "silly convention, radar trap OR grafitti", because
most entries only contained one of those.
However, there were much more entries than last year (2), I think there were
15 or so.

1. Fast by Glue/Real
2. Convention by Soney/Smash Designs
3. Juicidely Hurry by PigPen/Poison


On with C64 demo compo, I missed that sorry, so here only the results:

1. Project Pitchfork by Smash Designs
2. No by Smash Designs
3. Kotze Inside by Metalvotze


After that was the 32k game compo, which only exists at Mekka yet, I think.
So here were 12 entries, of which most looked very unfinished, I mean, a game
must have a goal, or not? But how can a game have a goal without a score,
lifes, levels, or anything else? I think the compo rules had to be more strict
in this point, because some of the games lacked all of this, and so they were
unplayable.
A bad thing about this compo was that Amiga and PC-entries were mixed-up,
although Hardball had promised that they would not...
I you're a Microsoft-hater (I think there are 2 or 3 ;), you'll love
Wak-A-Bill. In this game the goal is just: Kill Bill! Ain't that fun? Yes!
Also very nice is TREXX, a shooter equipped with a nice 3d-engine and one of
the few games with sound fx (although they were quite poor ;( )

1. Wak-A-Bill by Diabolic Force
2. TREXX by Polka B. & Submissive
3. Rise of the Rabbits by Abyss


The last compos were PC and Amiga demos. Acorn and Atari demos were cancelled.
The Amiga demo compo was as the only compo announced with a nice 3d-animation,
some partialising here, organizers???
Despite that, the Amiga demos were very nice, some even included phong-shading
(yes, this was satiric ;).
On PCs, the trend to use SVGA was more and more recogniseable. All demos were
shown on a Pentium 166, so what?
A real killer was Claudia by Deathstar, which featured a spectacular 3D-
engine, good graphics, nice sound and an overall good design.
(yes, I know, not a very special valuation, but I'm no demo-reviewer ;)

Amiga:
1. Megademo IV by Artwork
2. Fear Factory by Arsenic
3. Thug Life by Essence

PC:
1. Claudia by Deathstar
2. Segmentation Fault by Strontium 90
3. Toon Town by Kolor


Some more compos I've missed:

C64 Music:
1. Schn”mpf by KB/The Obsessed Maniacs
2. Sonic Impression by Brizz/Panic/Soulcore
3. Starlight by Fanta/Oxyron

C64 Graphic:
1. Too M.F. evil by Rayden/Alpha Flight 1970
2. Firespell by Hoogo
3. And Let Live by ALG/Alpha Flight 1970

C64 4K:
1. 4K by Smash Designs
2. Elven Magic by Hitmen
3. 4K Intro / WOW by Warriors of Wastelan

Amiga 40K:
1. Diskobox by Abyss
2. Kenguru 64K Intro by Impulse
3. Changing by Capsule

Amiga 4K:
1. Extel by Ambrosia
2. Abyss in Wonderland by Abyss
3. Newt by Focus Design



Yeah, that was all I think. Big thanks to the organizers for making this event
possible, thanks to all attenders who made it a great party, and finally:

   See you all next year!!!