Apple IIgs demos


Apple IIgs demos

The Apple IIgs demoscene goes back to the days of the original Apple II series in the 1980s, when software crackers would put "signature screens" at the beginnings of games of which they had broken the copy protection.

Later on, other groups would release what were termed "show-offs" in some quarters, programs that did interesting things or took advantage of little-known features and techniques to create a unique effect. Many of the extra programs included on Beagle Bros disks fell into this category. Applesoft BASIC was a favorite tool as it was widely available and allowed easy machine-level access through its PEEK and POKE statements.

However, a scene in the true sense of the word didn't emerge until the introduction of the Apple IIgs and its high-quality (for the time) graphics and sound capabilities. This opened the door for the Apple groups to utilize the coder-artist-composer mix that had become fairly standard in the demo community for other machines.

Most IIgs demos were self-booting 800K 3.5" disks, often created with unique booting software that allowed for loading and playing of the demo within seconds of turning the computer's power on. As a result of these unusual loaders, rarely were demos hard-disk installable, though some demo crews did release patches to allow their demos to be installed to a hard drive.

In the 1990s, most demo crews disbanded or moved on to other machines as the IIgs gave way to the PC-compatibles. A few groups, particularly Ninjaforce, remained active and continue to release the occasional project into the community. Most demos are perfectly compatible with several of the IIgs emulators, allowing them to be enjoyed to this day.

Notable Apple IIGS demos

*Bright Software's "Bright Demo", an early demo, launchable from Applesoft BASIC
*FTA's "Delta Demo", the last one they would do for the IIgs
*Jason Harper's "FillMaze", based on code by Werner Gunther. "FillMaze" was a rather incredible display of the IIgs "fill mode" graphics capability
*"Revenge of the Bob's Demo" Ninjaforce's first demo from 1992.
*"MegaDemo" from Ninjaforce, the first two-disk demo for the IIgs, also one of the first boot-disk demos to be patched to run from a hard drive. Interestingly, the "MegaDemo" was not compatible with the ROM 3 version of the IIgs and required an additional patch to be run on that model.
*FTA's "Modulae"
*FTA's "Nucleus", which was used by Apple itself to demonstrate the IIgs at trade shows
*"OverCycle", which placed graphics in the normally-blank screen border
*Bullwinkle's "Summer 1990 Demo"
*The multi-group collaboration "X-Mas Demo" (famous for its rather obscene Easter egg)
*The Captain's (aka TC Wilson) "X-Mas Demo" (the MACOS/METAL author's final work)


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