Saturday, 31 July 2010

Burning the midnight oil

Not that much time left now. Found a massive bug that causes cpu crash on random machines. Got to be careful with all the graphics cards from different vendors - who is going to throw white triangles on screen first, nVidia or ATI?

Running the demo again and again trying to fit visuals with music, one of the hardest tasks (but thanks to Leviathan and aMusic this can be done in a couple of nights).

Oh and writing this post while waiting to get to the final scene of the demo; no FF on this engine I'm afraid :-(

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Eat demos, sleep demos, drink coca-cola

Almost 7 days to assembly; can't take my mind off it!

I give a lecture on Friday 7.30pm, somewhere inside the Hartwall arena. Come and say hello!

Monday, 26 July 2010

The wind under my wings and Iconoclash

We got some very mixed (more like negative) reviews for our latest demo "The wind under my wings" at pouet. This is understandable, as I have mentioned before the audience for demos like that is quite small. Let me come back to this issue after I give out some details on the concept of "wind":

  • I've been trying to make a demo exactly like that for maybe 7 years. This is more time than for anything else we ever planned. To be precise, this production started my interest in trippy ambience and controlled noise; but I had never been able to transfer that into one of our productions. "eon", "aphorism for the masses", "walls of eryx" and "captive" were steps towards "the wind under my wings". I'm happy that I have resolved this even if it took so long. The future is open for further experimentation.
  • There is an underlying theme, very obscure (and it is even more if you haven't seen "Iconoclash" yet, which I'm sure you haven't): "The wind under my wings" continues the "rupture/chameleon" saga, in which the hero/avatar is chased away from this world into the unknown. Rupture/chameleon left us at complete destruction (presumably death), after a journey through the real world (objects of the real world functioning as they should, motorcycles run, helicopters fly etc.). Twinned Wind/Iconoclash demos continue in the "ether-world", or what I imagine lies further. Lets call it the spiritual universe where memories and thoughts are all messed up as in a dream.
  • Wind/Iconoclash more or less describe the same thing (with some cross-referenced elements) but with some important differences, other than the style and computer graphics techniques: while Wind is futuristic and expresses despair and anxiety, Iconoclash belongs to the past: it is gothic/baroque and depicts horror and confusion.
  • The choice of music (with the vocals) for Wind has already found lots of enemies. I believe it helps to create the element of anxiety I described above. Maybe the same would have happened with an ambient/noisy track - but that would have been quite predictable.
I find it much easier to immerse into "Wind" after having watched this demo (as you would expect) hundreds of times. Maybe it is that the brain needs to work out the patterns and rhythm slowly, one step at a time. Some demos need that, require your full attention and your devotion.

What started as an awkward attempt to break a 7 year curse has grown up considerably inside me. Maybe it will grow on you too.

Sunday, 25 July 2010

Live from Euskal 2010

I've been here at the Euskal encounters 2010 for the past 3 days, enjoying good weather, good company and good food. If you have never been there please do so, maybe next year or the year after; the place is mind-blowing huge! there are activities and computers eveywhere, although, sadly, the scene area is a shadow of its former self.

We presented a demo too:

Don't mind the critics, this is a very good demo indeed; (yeah, a thumb up from me too, we did a pretty good job with Amusic and his gal). It looked clean and focused on the big screen (unfortunately on a 4:3 aspect ratio) and gave me the warm feeling you get inside you once you see your production with the public.

I understand this is not for everyone, but I'll be more than pleased to see a rating of approval from certain people.

Clean-cut types who like their demos with phong and textures, suck your thumb... and wait.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Return of the prodigal son

So I went on holidays with my family last month and forgot to return home.

We went to Greece, to do what common people do there:
  1. Wake up at 10:00, have breakfast
  2. Drive to the beach, swim and tan for a few hours; drink a bit of coffee
  3. Go home, have lunch at 16:00, have a siesta for the next couple of hours
  4. Visit family, have dinner out
  5. Put baby to sleep, have a drink out, watch the world cup together with thousands of Yugoslavian tourists. Paradise!
  6. Go to sleep as the temperature just dips below 30'C
Would be nice wouldn't it. Only this is the life of a tourist. The reality is slightly different for many who live and work there:

  1. Wake up at 7:00, have a strong coffee
  2. Work in an air-conditioned office either making shitty java plugins or selling overpriced clothes to the nouveau poors
  3. Go home to wash and watch some crap on the tv, laced with a million of commercials for things you never needed anyway
  4. Go out to see friends and moan together about the crooked politicians, when it was you who voted them and your parents who, long ago, benefited from this chaos
  5. Go to bed wondering how you can afford one day to have your own children, your own house and your own furniture. Say goodnight to mother who looks after you.

Anyway, the first and last seconds of "Iconoclash" (our assembly demo... remember that?) are copied and pasted from my swimming experiences in Greece. I'll try now to post more often (although I'm going away again in 2 days) and keep you up to date; only 3 weeks left!