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MindCandy 2 review - sprechen sie deutsch?

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 6:47 am    Post subject: MindCandy 2 review - sprechen sie deutsch? Reply with quote

For the "official" release date, there's a great new review of MindCandy volume 2 at 4sceners.de by Bobic (formerly of the Back to the Roots website). It's in German, which is to be expected, but the Google and Babelfish translations to English mangle it to the point of humor. Could some noble German/English speaker please write up a decent English translation, so we may post an excerpt and link on our Reviews page?


UPDATE: We got one! Will post English version here soon.
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 18, 2007 2:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MindCandy Volume 2: Amiga Demos - review by Bobic @ 4Sceners.de

MindCandy Vol. 1 – PC Demos made the demoscene popular on DVD players. Now Fusecon and Hornet continue their work. The second part of the MindCandy DVD series contains only Amiga demos from the time from 1989 to 2004. Just in time for the official release date on January the 16th we tell you about the world of moving pixels and if this DVD is worth buying. In addition you can take part at our competition where you can win one of three copies of MindCandy Vol. 2.

Back to the Roots

The second edition of MindCandy is able to let your feelings explode – in a positive way, of course. The author of this article is a good example for that, because he made his first experience with the demoscene with Hardwired from the groups The Silents and Crionics. Back in early 1992 the German magazine Amiga Joker started with monthly reviews of Amiga demos. He was impressed by these reviews, the technical wonders which were described there and like the screenshots a lot. It didn’t take look until he contacted his local Public Domain dealer and ordered the first demo disks. Hardwired was the first demo which ever entered the disk slot of his Amiga 500 and he was totally addicted to the on screen show within seconds, because of the beautiful artwork, the brilliant soundtrack from Jesper Kyd (Hitman series) and the bunch of impressive effects which were shown.

Now he made a similar experience 16 years after he traveled for the first time into the world of the demoscene! Hardwired hasn’t lost his fascination when he saw it on MindCandy Vol. 2, but this demo is just one short stop on the journey to the roots of the Amiga demoscene. Four other demos are waiting for attention on the DVD before the TSL/Crionics show starts. The legendary Red Sector Megademo (1989) for example, or Scoopex’ Mental Hangover, which was the first ever released Trackloader demo. Another object of interest is Enigma from the demogroup Phenomena (1991) as well as the best demo from Razor 1911 so far: Voyage (1991). Many more legendary demos are waiting after this trip, such as State of the Art, Desert Dream or Sanity’s Arte! which was released in 1993 and which ends the era of the Amiga 500 scene. All these productions are still great to watch in those modern days, but as with retro gaming you will probably have to experienced the good old times yourself, otherwise it could be possible that you won’t like these old 16-bit pixel stuff.

The Age of Colors

The demoscene started to feature a modern and more experimentally style with the introduction of the AGA graphic chipset which was able to show 256 colors at once. At this time the scene as we know it today was built. That’s the reason why we can tell you for sure that MindCandy Vol. 2 can even satisfy the young generation of demosceners and computer enthusiasts. Productions like Nexus 7 from Andromeda (1994), Closer from CNCD (by the way, it was recorded without showing the scanlines mode!) or Nerve Axis’ Relic (1998) show their graphical beauty and were responsible for bringing demos into the age of 3D graphics on the Amiga. Every year the effect hungry crowd was surprised with technically and graphically more impressive stuff. In 2001 it was Mature Furk’s Lapsuus who dominated the whole scene while Silkcut from TBL did the same in 2004.

Silkcut is the 30th and last demo on this DVD, which is a bit disappointing, because a couple of even more impressive Amiga demos have been released later, mainly from TBL themselves. Unfortunately the creators of MindCandy had to make a decision one day which demo will be the last. At that time they didn’t know that the finalizing of MindCandy Vol. 2 would still take two years, therefore we miss the latest TBL demo Starstruck. A bit disappointing is the fact that the second part of MindCandy contains only one demo from the design kings of Ephidrena. Where’s “J” for example or Adam Malysz vs. Wienerwurst? Where are demos from Oxygene, Haujobb or Loonies? All these groups played an important role in the Amiga demoscene and would have deserved a place on this DVD. The reason was probably the lack of space as MindCandy Vol. 2 is not a double sided DVD production as its predecessor was. Therefore only half of the space could be filled. [editor's note: actually, it is only about 10% smaller, because vol 2 is double-layer (DVD-9) while vol 1 was single-layer (DVD-10)]

Closing words

Honestly to say these aren’t big problems, because MindCandy Vol. 2 only costs about 15,- Euros. That’s really worth the money because you will get 30 of the best all-time Amiga demos which every demo freak should have seen. All these videos are digitally remastered and can be found in best quality on the disk. If you compare the video quality from MindCandy 2 with the video versions of the Amiga demos which can be downloaded from 4Sceners.de, you will notice a big difference. Included on MindCandy 2 is also a very interesting Making-of report who gives detailed information about the production and recording phase, which problems have to be solved, the different screen modes of some demos for example. Layout and design of the cover, the booklet and the DVD menu are also well done. Surprisingly we have to say that the real highlight of this compilation is not the demos, but the the video report about the Breakpoint 2003 demo party. It’s simply brilliant, because it shows the tendency, feelings and the enthusiasm of the scene in a perfect way. Awesome work!
So all what we can say is that MindCandy Vol. 2 – Amiga Demos is a must have for everyone interested in the demoscene. As for the first DVD we can say that MindCandy is pure Eyecandy.
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