ZINE is the leading interactive advert-free magazine covering the demoscene. The demoscene is an underground subculture where graphics artists, programmers and musicians collaborate in groups under pseudonyms to create so-called demos – productions which are made to showcase the creators’ programming and audiovisual skills in real-time computer generated videos; all created by skilled developers in their spare time. They can be compared to music videos made using real-time CGI. Many creative minds who work on demos, work on triple-A games in their professional lives at the largest and most respected game development studios around the world.
“Games are our day job but the demoscene is our playground – where we have the freedom to explore and invent,” explains Matt “Smash” Swoboda, programmer in the demoscene group Fairlight. “The things we create for demos today might just show up in the games of the future.”
“The products of the demoscene are fruits of imagination and skill,” comments Kostas “Navis” Pataridis of the group Andromeda Software Development. “A team can construct a world that didn’t exist before, all while challenging themselves technically and artistically. It is this range of expression of human emotions and thoughts that makes the demoscene a fitting platform for the digital artists of today.”
“The demoscene offers you a chance of doing things and playing with ideas and concepts that would be difficult to do with any other medium,” adds Martti “Preacher” Nurmikari of the demoscene group Brainstorm.
Many of today’s most accomplished game creators have their roots in the demoscene, where they honed their skills during their formative years. Many of them still passionately work on demo productions in their spare time. Groups of artists, musicians, and programmers regularly compete with each other for the accolades of their peers at so-called demoparties. The most challenging aspect of the work for programmers is to create compelling productions within tight file-size limitations.
“The demoscene has made outstanding productions in the dark over decades, but now the creators really want go out there and show the world what they are capable of,” said comments editor-in-chief Alexander “Axel” Strohm.
ZINE features articles about the development of the most acclaimed productions, interviews with well-known “sceners” who have made (or continue to make) an impact, reports about demoscene outreach activities and much more. ZINE 14 also features an interview with Academy Award winning visual effects supervisor Kevin Mack (Fight Club, Ghost Rider) about how the demoscene inspires him. Furthermore, the mag sheds a light on various retro platforms and how you get your limited hardware to do extraordinary real-time graphics.
Check the virtual mag out here: