What is your favourite own demoscene production?

category: general [glöplog]
Inspired by deepr's fantastic thread here, what are your favourites of your own productions and why?

In my case:

Fields of Glass
By far the most personal production I've never made. It's not a crowd favorite by far, but there's so much of myself in this that, despite its obvious flaws, it's still something that I fully stand behind. The song is very personal and the last photograph shows me and my wife on an seashone in Portugal at a time when things were very windy indeed.

So many emotions went into making this, and I think it shows. A breakup demo if there ever was one. Also probably the epitome of "Traction style", whatever this is. And Gargaj's track carries it all through to the end.

The big crowdpleaser. It hasn't really aged all that well in some ways, and it's far from what it ever should have been, but there's a sort of naive enthusiasm in it that's missing from my later stuff. And apparently the comeback from the Romeo Knight dude was a big thing. Who would've known (I certainly didn't)? The growing vine spiral thing in the end is one of my own favorite pieces of code I've written. And almost the entire Brainstorm community participated in this in one way or another. That's something to nostalgize over.
added on the 2021-04-12 12:38:20 by Preacher Preacher
I like how this came together. I think it is the best demo I did so far: Coherent, okish pacing, packs some punch/attitude and the end result has the look/atmosphere I was aiming for. Music fits as well, i think.
From the coding side (DX11) I managed to strictly focus on a no-bullshit approach with pretty low-tech model import pipeline (.3ds yay). First time using rocket, and it really helped syncing/iterating.
Sadly it didn't really appeal to the NVscene 2014 audience it seems.

Kilo Volt
Shown second to last in Evoke demo compo, but ultimately came last. Was fun to work on it, was quite happy how the code turned out. Working with hellfire on some design tips was another major hilight on this one. Had a lot of fun working on it (albeit quite rushed..)

DX9 demo with many nice SM3 effects (on the fly SH mesh evaluation, hardware instancing, parallax mapping, etc.) A focus on math-based effects.
In retrospect I hate the music and "design"/colors of many parts in this demo, which ruined the good stuff (effects).
Development was painfully long, however working closely with hijacker on the code was a very motivating experience.
added on the 2021-04-12 13:35:16 by arm1n arm1n
Drinking Buddies

I like this because it's high adrenaline in every aspect; the production, showing it in the compo and the pacing in the demo itself.

JackAsser asked just a few days before X if I had a picture, which I had - and then it was frantic work with repurposing it for the demo and making charsets for the presentation screens and intro/end scrollers.

Pernod worked on his effect right up until the deadline and most of the other effects were either party coded or linked in the very last minute.

During the compo, we first thought it odd that they'd placed the demo so late in the succession, but after Censor's Star Wars demo came to an end we realized they weren't gonna show it at all. JackAsser and Pernod quickly got up and sprinted across the party hall and up the stairs to the orga booth, asking what the heck they thought they were doing.

The orgas were innocent, of course. Turns out the demo had been uploaded to the "other releases" category. So we got our production shown last in the compo all thanks to a silly mistake. Good times!
added on the 2021-04-12 13:53:39 by grip grip
Our biggest demo. Featured a spinning island of Ireland and a logo very similar to the Guinness logo.
added on the 2021-04-12 14:10:59 by DaD1916 DaD1916
Ah nice idea :) Having 100+ prods makes this a bit hard since many have some sort of memory/experience attached. Sure, results may vary depending on the point of view and the time passing I guess.

My 1st game release. It is one of my favourite productions because I play it myself from time to time. Yeah, it's fun! Check it out ;)

fucking columns, the
Another game. Even though it is quite new it was by far my biggest coding challenge since I entered the scene. I am very proud of getting it done in 256b. And that is enough reason.

streams of gaia
Looking back I always stop at this intro because for me it marks the point where I found my direction and where I stepped up my game a lot in terms of designing things.

As I said above there are more prods but making a long list has no use and I guess would be even more annoying.

I am looking forward to the future answers in this thread. It is interesting to see a personal choice that does not neccessarily align with the popularity of the prod(s).
added on the 2021-04-12 15:07:04 by 100bit 100bit
'1finger' because it became more or less what we expected, i still love its in-your-faceness. And the creation process of it was fun too... like shooting random videos while clubbing to triangulate later.

'Raspberry Psy' because 75% of the artwork was mine and it came out rather well, apart from the 10% of butt ugly artwork that RamonB5 hustled from some other Desire member and was put in the demo without my knowledge while i was on holidays. Ironically the butt ugly artwork looks like a 'did not come out so well'-psy demo i did in ~2003 :P

'Variform 2' for the giggles making it. And the unexpected troll support from revision orgas to display it as the last demo in the compo.
added on the 2021-04-15 02:42:58 by hitchhikr hitchhikr
I love self promotion
GLSL Auto tetris I learn alot creating it
added on the 2021-04-15 04:27:55 by Danilw Danilw
As a musician: daddy was a registered trademark
From my Zaag phase, when I wanted to make everything sound as off-putting as I can for some reason. This is one of the tracks where I feel that worked as an aesthetic choice. A bunch of cubes set to horribly downsampled beats and noises, with all the finesse of a neolithic club across the head, the demo was always going to rank around 12th. Still, it hits like a truck, with Skrebbel taking an extremely limited design space and turning it into a powerhouse of sync.

As a coder: Puroresu no seishin
In terms of concept and design, I think each of the demos I have coded so far does something that the others don't, so I can't really rank them by those merits. By technical aspects, though, Puroresu no seishin is easily the most accomplished of the lot - a culmination of everything I had learned about the PICO-8 at that point. For a mainly European audience, the theme of Japanese professional wrestling is a niche of a niche to the extent where I'm not sure if a lot of people are even aware it's a thing, but I do think I succeeded in communicating my love and enthusiasm for puroresu through this production.
added on the 2021-04-15 08:59:33 by jobe jobe
Led Blur Both my most "complete" demo and my first (and most inspiring) experience with coding on a handheld. And it open the world for my love of openhandhelds and programming on them (even though in some later handhelds I bought, the only thing I did was reporting the same old demos). I am very nostalgic for GP32 now and I might have bought 5 of them out of which 2-3 don't work or boot up with problems.

A Step Beyond My first CPC demo and I shoot a bit high for being my very first, I was arguing about most CPC demos just being a scroller and a raster and press space to load the next part instead of the multipart/trackmo style I was used from PC/Amiga those days. So instead of doing another single screen with scroller and rasters to learn, I put too much pressure on me to finish this with multiple screens and software rendering effects, etc. But it was worth it at the end and might have inspired few people on CPC.
added on the 2021-04-15 11:32:32 by Optimus Optimus
Hugi #16 because it was the largest regular issue with more than 2 MB of texts.

Hugi #17 because it was made within just a month and nevertheless had the size of a regular issue.

Hugi #18 because of its excellent design ("a diskmag with feeling", as a reader put it).

Hugi Coding Digest because of its unique concept.
added on the 2021-04-15 12:04:51 by Adok Adok
Hugi, because I did that, and because of my ego.

There, fixed that for you.
added on the 2021-04-15 18:13:00 by xTr1m xTr1m
Adok bashing doesn't seem to be added into demoscene ethics.
added on the 2021-04-15 18:32:36 by Serpent Serpent
Adok bashing is mandatory.
added on the 2021-04-15 18:37:26 by w00t! w00t!
because I did that, and because of my ego.

well, isn't that the point of the whole thread to some extend?!

btw really interesting to see the authors perception in here, so please keep 'em coming
added on the 2021-04-15 18:43:25 by v3nom v3nom
(why would the master of self reference need this threat :P)
ok, i'll bite

Memories, my sizecoding master thesis, i'm still very happy about all the positive reception
Quatro, together with my friend Sensenstahl, whose style makes all the difference here
Dragon 16b, the dragon fractal in 16 bytes, hidden in this pack, i'm still baffled that i managed that
added on the 2021-04-15 18:43:26 by HellMood HellMood
The one that has been in making since 2002 or so...
added on the 2021-04-15 20:00:40 by leGend leGend
So I wanted to share some specific details about the productions below, but as I started writing it turned into a more personal/emotional thing, which I think I like better tbh. So you can't say you weren't warned, at least.. :D

engage. This represented a turning point in my life that started just before forming logicoma, and really started to manifest with the release of elysian. Prior, I had gone through a period of depression and anxiety that had bubbled up over many years and wasn't helped by the fact that I worked in a relatively high-pressure environment. But after TG15, I decided that I wanted to really pour myself into my interests and re-connect with what had motivated me in the first place. I decided re-learn graphics programming and really do stuff right. I wanted to be more present, more active, and push myself in ways that I hadn't before. And after the amazing 64k compo at revision 2016, it became even clearer that I was on the right track and if I just kept pushing, we would be able to make some really kickass stuff in a style that we could be proud of and that would be uniquely ours. Those ~2 years were really intense and in many ways weren't healthy and didn't help the mental situation I was in, but I think in even more ways, it was exactly what I needed to do to prove to myself what I was capable of and that I could really leave my mark on the world around me. engage, to me, is where all of that came to a head. And this is why winning that meteorik was so special to me and why I was running around screaming like a madman about it on stage at revision the following year when it was announced :) .

nu. It made a few people very angry. The visuals are compressed video, made in a couple weeks (with GL/rocket to generate frames, and a custom VM-like codec that uses the DMA during VBlank; basically what people call a "tile streamer" these days but I wasn't aware of the term then), with almost no visible artifacts and a fun tune (which I also wrote from scratch, including the SPC driver and generating samples etc after blocking everything out with synths in ableton live). It's nothing hugely impressive, but realizing I could do that, combined with finding an artistic concept to work with it, in addition to a music style that lent itself to relying on a handful of samples in limited memory, and tying all of that together with entirely custom tech (seriously, there's not a single byte in that demo that didn't go through a tool that I wrote, even the assembler itself was a labor of love) in a short time was really, really fun. It never occurred to me when making it that it "wasn't a demo" or that it was "cheap" or "cheating" or whatever; it literally felt like using technology creatively like I've always tried to do in the scene. So the particularly negative points of feedback I got about it were pretty upsetting and demotivating (and surprising!); I remember just wanting to have a beer with those folks and chill and be friends. This taught me a good lesson about how people project their own insecurities, and I learned a lot about myself because of that as well. I'm also happy to see that some of these people would turn out to be really nice in the end (just not to me). But regardless, the response was still overwhelmingly positive and I really appreciated that. And it was really fun to hook up with ctrix later and do another one. We'll be back someday, in some form.

But, I've saved this one for last because it's a bit more heartfelt than the others: makeshift. Whenever I think of which demos I'm most proud of, this one always comes up, to the extent that I've even considered making a poster out of a hexdump of it. If you're really curious, please read the included note on the release disk; it goes into detail about a lot of things, and there's something special about reading it in the intended font with intended music (another bonus h0ff tune!) and all the typos and whatnot when it was fresh. But the TL;DR is that it combines everything I love about the demoscene:
- technicality: when I wrote it I thought I might be the first to do a fullscreen zoomplasma on C64, but later discovered it was done at X in the prior year (and probably earlier as well), so oh well :) . In any case, the hw tricks used in C64 coding are something that make that platform particularly special to write stuff for, and I recommend it to anyone who hasn't tried before (but beware - it's addictive!).
- the nostalgia factor: most will think it's due to the platform, and you'd be wrong; for me, it's due to the fact that it contains some code I wrote when I was 17 (the weird floating sinus boxes), and there's something really special about digging back that far and improving on what you could do before and finding new ways to implement and present things.
- teamwork: h0ff did a really nice track for it, and to my surprise, due to using 4mat's 1kplay setup, it was around 1k, which was less than half of what I expected, which is the entire reason we tried to go for the "demo in 4k" style in the first place and cram so much stuff in there
- compression: This was the first LZ I did which did proper bit packing, and even though it ended up stealing most ideas from exomizer (thanks to the author who was nice enough to exchange some emails and help me understand it at the time), it was really fun to dig in and implement everything myself. Had I made the intro a couple years later it would have been over 200 bytes smaller in its current form, which would have allowed better transitions and a more fleshed-out layers effect at the end, but that's quite OK, that packer configuration was put to good use more recently anyways. :)
- packaging: Intros in particular are special to me because of the "wrapped up" impression I have of them. Everything fits neatly into this little box. Nothing more. Nothing less.
- deadline crunch: Usually this is quite stressful but honestly I remember it as being two of the most fun days of my entire demoscene existence, at solskogen, sitting with blueberry (who, coincidentally, also worked on a C64 plasma around that time which would become datafresh and also had the idea that C64 4k's could be developed into "mini demos"; it was fun keeping that a secret in until it was released at datastorm later that year) and emoon (who was working on something else unrelated that I don't quite remember, but was great company anyways!) and dropping bytes by the 20's, 10's, 5's, and finally 1's, until it came in at exactly 4095 bytes.
- party atmosphere: This goes hand-in-hand with the above, but it's always special, especially on "home turf" parties, to release something that isn't designed to blow everyone away or win some big prize or whatever, but is instead more personally special, which this intro was to me. There was this moment when the slide was shown before the intro and after reading the note I had written, people started cheering, without even having seen the thing yet. I remember holding back tears in that moment, because I was exactly where I was supposed to be, presenting a labor of love, for no purpose other than just to make something special for a small group of people, and it totally clicked with them, and I was perfectly happy.
added on the 2021-04-16 17:16:39 by ferris ferris
SaboTagE, because
a.) it's STE,
b.) everybody in Paradox contributed to it,
c.) it took us five f***ing years to make it and
d.) it contains a handful of effects never done before on an STE - in 2016!

Also, i think Dan and 505 have done a tremendous job with the graphics and the music, actually keeping me glued to the keyboard to cram all of those effects together and get them to work peacefully one after the other on a 2MB machine with a double-sided, double density disk drive.
added on the 2021-04-16 18:01:58 by Paranoid Paranoid
jobe <3<3

agree, btw. it's the only demo i did that came from somewhere "real". all the other demos I did were really just excuses for getting on the big screen and/or excuses to collaborate with sceners much better than myself (which was awesome and a lot of fun, but not the same thing). "daddy was a registered trademark" had no ambition other than being what it is. if i ever make another demo i want it to be like that again.
added on the 2021-04-16 22:14:35 by skrebbel skrebbel
Offtopic a bit - just wanted to give Ferris the ol-tip-o-the-hat. What a great read that was - thank you! Instead of just saying "you rock"; it should be said that you are one of the smartest and most humble persons I have met. You can destroy anyone in music (you will obviously never say that yourself) and you have created some of the most forwardthinking demos in the last few years. I hope you keep at it, sir :)

Ontopic: https://www.pouet.net/prod.php?which=88605

As someone who has been around for a while - this really put a huge smile on me :D
Choosing a single favorite is not possible.
added on the 2021-04-17 06:18:31 by xerxes xerxes
Sorry for posting twice.

Rasmus/Loonies - it was an honor to work with you on that demo! If you ever want to do it again..
added on the 2021-04-17 06:41:24 by xerxes xerxes
Xerxes: I think you posted the wrong link - you must mean this one: https://www.pouet.net/prod.php?which=57939

Probably my favorite track of yours!
added on the 2021-04-17 08:35:51 by Puryx Puryx