Report: Bytefall '99

Written by FatCrazer

History of the Russian demoscene in short

Well... We, in Russia, didn't have a demoscene for a long time. Probably it was the fucking "IRON CURTAIN". Only after the destruction of the USSR and the foundation of the Russian Federation people became able to get real machines. The first demoparty that made a powerful push to scene was Enlight '95. It was held in Sankt-Petersburg (don't mess it up with the same named American town). So, this party was extremely big and popular, that is about 1000 or more people visited it (it is REALLY lots of people for the Russian demoscene).

It was the year 1997. Everybody expected something cewl from Enlight' 97. It really whipped the llamaz ass [(c)WinAMP]. About one and a half thousand people were present on the party place. Everything seemed outstanding, but...


So the second day of the party was canceled. You can imagine how angry the visitors were. Well, after this sorrowful act we didn't have any PC demoparty.

But a demogroup called ByteFall saved everything! They started a new party called ByteFall.

While going to the party

And the year 1999 came. Our group Storm Studios decided to take place in ByteFall'99. I (FatCrazer) and BUGzzz went to the partyplace. We went separately. While I was in the bus thoughts about Enlight '97 came to my mind. "I wish everything would go cewl," I thought.

Day 1

When I arrived at the partyplace, the discoclub "Proektsiya" ("Projection"), I saw only three sceners, including Monster of Piter. Some time later (after a big mug of beer) we heard from coming sceners that the tax-police had closed the club. Everybody waited for the organisers, some even wanted to find and beat them up.

Some hours passed. About 40-45 sceners were staying near the closed club. It was cold and dark. Then a big bus with the organisers arrived. They apologised for the organisation problems and said that we should go on this bus to the other club, where the party would take place. While I was sitting in the bus, BUGzzz came, then I met Programmer/UnV (the father of TEN). Some minutes later the bus started its ride. Everybody was singing Offspring and smoking (it is really cewl when you are allowed to smoke on the bus). After a short ride we arrived at club "Bednie ludi" ("Poor people"). But what picture did we see? Lots of sceners staying near the entrance and crying for vengeance. The chiefs of the club rejected their permit to have a party at their place.

It was cold... dark... everybody was tired, especially out-of-towners (some of them made a 500-600 kilometer journey). From a long distance we saw organisers coming with a projector and a PC. They didn't know what had happened... After 10 minutes of crying we asked ourselves, "Where we should spend the night?"

Programmer/UnV, BUGzzz, Monster, me and some other sceners went to McDonald's to eat and think of the second party day. Then one of the organisers came and said that the party would take place at club "Zolushka" ("Cinderella") tomorrow.

Our group spent the night in a computer club. I played billiards on PC all night, until I fell asleep on the keyboard.

Day 2

After we got up we went to the new partyplace. And this time everything seemed to be okay. We were even allowed to enter the club. So we sat down on comfortable sofas and relaxed, waiting for the organisers. Well... it was 11:00 and they had not arrived yet. Then I saw Manwe of SandS and BlackBug of BFG with the projector. They tried to hang it, but succeded only after two attempts. I felt extremely bad after joining the BOOZESCENE last evening.

Some sceners started uploading their contributions to the compo-machine. While they were doing this XPEh/LkR settled Amiga. It was an A1200 with axel.

So, after about an hour the party started. The first compo was multichannel traditional music. And certainly there were bugs. Nobody announced the numbers of the works, so everybody (especially those who returned to the partyplace after the beginning of the compo) were tangled and didn't know on which work they were voting. Some minutes later XPEh powered on his Amiga and started showing work numbers on a big screen. But bugs continued. The main organiser Manwe/SandS was away and the people who were running works messed everything up and instead of some traditional works started alternatives THAT HADN'T PASSED PRESELECTION. Well... you can imagine how much that sucked. The worst thing was that they ran that shit instead of real works, that's why our music went into nowhere.

Then some other compos like 3drender, alternative music and handdrawn started. The works were good, even alternative music varied.

It was near evening. The demo and intro compos started. They were the most interesting to me, because I am a coder. There was nothing special in the 128byte intros, but 512 bytes shocked everybody. Monster from Sankt-Petersburg created 3d with music and a scroller! Check it out, it is really worth seeing. It is called "Qloth".

The 4 kbyte intros were good. The first place intro was full of 3d even metasnakes (stuff like metaballs but snakes). The 64k intros were interesting, the best works were "Sad" by Virtual Illusions - it was something in Orange style - and "Swop" by Proxium, this one was in Jizz/Stash style.

And then the 4mb demos came. The first demo was "Dive" by UniVerse. This demo was well known in the scene, because it was finished a year before the party, but Programmer - its author - hadn't released it. Then came our demo. FUCKING MIDAS! Due to infernal bugs in Midas our demo started without sound! So we had to break its execution and run the next work.

This one was awesome! It was probably the first Russian demo that would look great at every foreign demoparty, too. The best parts were about Boris Yeltsin dancing and Bill Gates snapping his vampire-like teeth.

After shouts and claps had stopped I restarted our demo. I had to start music in the background using ModPlug. Well... our demo got what it deserved.

We didn't have any time to wait for the 4 channel mods, because it was too late, so we left the partyplace.

- FatCrazer/Storm