Demoscene tribute: Rage

The day has come to pay small tribute to my demoscene roots. From time to time I’ll publish short article about some of the most interesting productions/groups (in my subjective opinion of course). I’ll try to avoid the most famous demos and focus on those that may be not known to the mainstream audience (so no kkrieger, even if it’s amazing).

We’ll start with Swedish group Rage. It’s one of my (if not THE) favourite PC groups, even if they hail from Amiga scene. Their first PC production was 3rd demo of The Party 1995 - Reanimator.

Reanimator title screen

It’s basically a 3D object show, but effects are pretty advanced (remember, we’re in 1995). We have one of the first 3D bump mapping routines here, metaballs, voxels rendered on a cube, 3D morphing and more.

3D bump mapping

There’s also obligatory “virtual reality” part (3D world with flying camera, it was something at that time, every reputable demo done after 1995 would have one. Basically you needed Z-clipping and some kind of camera track, but shhh. I think that version from Reanimator had even some perspective correction for road textures). It was one of the most demanding demos at that time, required Pentium and followed an old demoscene tradition of “no GUS = no music”… No music = no demo in this case as Fajser’s soundtrack is breathtaking and fits the cyberpunk theme of this production perfectly. I’ve not been able to find Reanimator on YouTube, but it works under DOSBox (just remember to get latest version, it used to crash under DOSBox 0.65, works OK with 0.72+).

[Update 2016] Some good soul did upload Reanim8r to youtube, so enjoy:

Swedes striked again 15 months later with a new demo - Robotnik. It came second at The Gathering 1997, beaten only by coop production from CNCD + Orange. It’s visible that they used some code from Reanimator, but there are new impressive effects as well (spotlights, projective shadows, cloth simulation, mirrors…).

Sadly, it was the last Rage’s production. Later they released only their graphics program - Pixler and stopped demoscene activity. They’re still remembered for their trademarks: code heavy demos and consistent industrial atmosphere of productions.

Old comments

Optimus 2008-10-13 07:16:06

Nice, but as far as I remember Reanim8r didn’t required GUS to run, it had SB sound too. It’s the demo that told me “Get a Pentium, Jerk!” but there was a switch to allow it run in my 486 and some of the parts were still running smoothly :P Also it crashed a lot..
Also, Robotnik is one of my favorite PC demos. The atmosphere, the effects, the transitions, in your face! I was going to write something on my blog about this demo but you came first :)