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Eternity No. 4

or Forever Quattro party report

by Wotnau/DMAgic

    Do you lead a busy life? Probably, and I do as well. Nevertheless, there’s one item which has been one and the same in my calendar for four years until now. About the 3rd weekend in March it always says: FOREVER! It stands for the Forever 8-bit party, probably the biggest 8-bit-only multiplatform party of today, which is regularly hosted by the town of Trencin in Slovakia. Simply put, this is a party report from Forever Quattro (the official name of the 4th Forever) which took place March 14 – 16, 2003. 

    On Friday the 14th (eh?) I took a day off from work, to get there in time and be there since the beginning. First, I love the first hours of parties, when people arrive and slowly fill the party halls. It somehow reminds me of creation of a life-form – the visitors breath life into the empty flesh of the party. Second, I belong to the organizing team, so I take it as a kind of duty to be there since the beginning. 

Horribly empty partyhallWotnau is comingParty hall is getting filled

    Journeying to a party place is always an interesting chapter. I like travelling to parties. The long ways give me a chance to put something between my everyday life and the party, to switch my mind from one to another. I got up at 4 AM on that Friday and next to almost missing my first bus I had a trouble-free way to Trencin where I arrived around noon. The natives from the organizing team did a good job this time – the map I printed out from the Forever site led me safely from the bus station to the party place. 

Trencin - CastlePartyplace outside

    After moving from one place to another in the previous year, the party place stayed the same this time – and it was definitely a good decision. The party took place in a backside of a school complex in Zlatovce – a suburbia of Trencin. The backside was the only trouble for some of the visitors who had problems getting around the complex. There was a poster on the front door saying „The Forever party place is on the other side of the building“, including a little map, but the visitors who arrived at night easily overlooked it. The party hall itself was perfectly suitable. It could absorb some 150–200 visitors but still it didn’t look empty with the 80 – 90 people the party had this year.

Chapter One – the Gathering, the Party Place, the Organization

First encounters – the thriller

    I entered the party place at ca 12:30 to meet the first visitors, who arrived from Poland in the early morning, and the other organizers of course. As usual, there were problems with setting the sound equipment, and as usual, it worked in the end. Next to just being happy to meet the other guys, the Speccy orgs had a surprise in store for me – a microphone!!! After three years of regularly losing my voice at the party (I’m the voice of the party) I have a microphone and even a mixing deck at hand. WOW!!!
    Thanks to CreaMD who took two C=64’s with him, I didn’t have to travel with a computer. So I just put on the organizer’s T-shirt and install myself at the podium. And then the thriller starts… Well, maybe this deserves an explanation?! For me, there are two thrilling times at the party – one of them is of course the compos, and the other one is the opening day: how many visitors arrive and who they are. It’s the number and the kind of visitors who create the party atmosphere.

Wotnau in actionELLVIS (main speccy organiser)MacGyver - always smilingCreaMD and his sister Womana

    Meeting old and new people is one of the elements I love the most about partying, and I have enough of it at the party. As the C=64 organizers’s table is the first thing a visitor can see, and me and CreaMD there with a T-shirt saying „Forever organizer“, most of the visitors drive their first steps at the party towards us just to exchange greetings, ask who has arrived already or where and when they can pay the entrance fee.

Wotnau ;-)Traditional ~everybody let’s get out of the hall we are going to squeeze entrance fee from you~ (TM) forever party ritual.Jookie

    Unexpected meetings after years belong to what makes parties unique. Of course I know many faces but by far not all of them. Two C=64 guys from Holland arrive together with their Czech mates, they drop in to say hello, we greet them back… And then I hear one of them saying: „You and Wotnau are the only guys I know here -“ I take a second glance and finally the bells ring. „Exile! The Exile from Mekka ’99 where you had to listen to the same music for hours when I was timing my demo!“ „Yes, the same one!“ Exile smiles broadly. 

Exile and Drake (NL)Exile’s fleamarket (almost all for free)Exile drawing his compo pic.

    And the row of visitors goes on. The guys from Padua and Anubis, who were travelling together, had a tough luck – their customs officer didn’t have his day and suspected them from smuggling their hardware in to sell it. After they refused to leave a money deposit promising that they’d take their hardware back as well, they had to leave it at the borders to get it back when they travel home again. From their arrival on we ask everyone if they had the same problem – nops. This just proves that some customs officers are assholes who want to get a bribe and some are not. First of our fears fades away quite fast – many ZX guys arrive. This ensures that this Forever will be a real multiplatform event, unlike the previous year when the party was ruled solely by the C=64. Atari oscillates around 15 visitors, as usual. However, we are still thrilled. The party place is filling very slowly. Sad of Padua comes to tell us that the party place looks somewhat empty. I feel like strangling him. As if we couldn’t notice. 8 → It’s been snowing heavily in the neighbouring countries. Our fellows from DMagic and Protovision are among those who are still missing. On the other hand, Gasman, the Spectrum icon of the party who flies to Forever every year from UK, and JTN, who came from an area close to the Asian part of Russia (he’s still a European, but just so-so ;D) - our furthest visitors – both arrive safely.

Gasman and JTN getting special prize for the ~most distant travel~.Gasman and JTN once again getting the ~long distance travel ~ bonus prize ;-)TDM  (middle) and JTN (Russia)TDM, Factor6 and Gasman (UK) - sitting

    Between 19:00 and 20:00 another boulder falls off our hearts. Xi/Satantronic arrives, bringing the projector, as he promised. The sound equipment works, we’ll have a bigscreen, the only element missing are the visitors. Around 21:00 PM we are slowly calming down. We have some 60 visitors already and the party buzz is already going on. At 22:30, MacGyver and ThunderBlade, both deadbeat, show up in the party hall. I go out of the building to wait and navigate for JTR, who’s bringing the car around complex – and so I also don’t miss the most spectacular arrival of a party visitor! It’s completely dark outside, as the party place is facing the school yard. Suddenly I can see two cones of light appearing from the bend behind the house. I place myself into the middle of the road and wave my hands as if navigating a plane on an airport, expecting JTR. The horn blows, TOOT-TOOT!, and I can see a cute VW Beetle arriving and Bugjam/ROLE, another Forever hard core visitor, inside! Nice to see you, dude! Then JTR arrives, too. DMagic is now complete at the party place, as well as some 70 other visitors. We know that some more will arrive on Saturday. This party will be a success. 

Jak-T-RipAudience - Hoild in the shortsDrake’s outfit  ;-)Drake

The party place, equipment and organization

    For the above stated reasons, not much happened on Friday, except a little C=64 demoshow. So let’s sum up the party’s ground now. The party place was OK and as far as I know it should stay the same for the next year. Personally, I welcome that it’s situated in the backside of the school complex because it increases the party’s safety. Simply no one except the right people knows that there’s a party – and I want to believe that nowadays the scene consists of honest people. This year we found a forgotten wallet at the end of the party, which, fortunately, got his master back just before he left the party, and a mobile phone recharger – if you forgot it at the party, contact the Speccy organizers who keep it for the owner. 

POL/Phantasy (Ellvis’s brother and co-organiser)EllvisSad/PaduaLordHypnos, Sad and Marketa (his girlfriend)

    The party hardware was very good. The picture from the projector was crisp and this Forever had definitely the best sound out of them all. The trebles were crystal clear, the basses were deep but unless the author (e.g. moi) overmodulated the instruments, they had the right sound. The mixing deck did a good job and the microphone worked – a great news for me after the three unplugged years. Themultiplatform nature of the eveLt triggered slight pauses necesAary for video input changes, hoDever. The only problem came witH the C= Plus/4 demo supplied foB the wild compo on a video tape In the end it had to be displaJed on a TV screen instead – butthanks God the audience was tolDrant and after all the C= Plus/ entry won the compo, so we at Least didn’t influence theresults here.

<A target=_blank href"">Ata@i freak typing some realtime teHt<Atarget=_blank href=„“><IMGheight=80 alt=„Commodore posse -)“ hspace=2 src=„imagepool/f4/7.jpg“ width=106 border=1>

    The visitors and safety earned my respect this time. Maybe it played a part that the orgalizers had united looks this time and that we made clear that the party rules should be kept, maybe it wasn’t necessary… Either way, Forever Quattro could do without a controversy. No one vomitted at the partyplace, no one came in at 4 AM singing while everyone else was sleeping, nothing of this kind. Those who had a couple of beers or something stronger got just merry, simply everything went smoothly and in a peaceful way and we didn’t have to settle down any problem among the visitors. Thank you, dear visitors!
    The organization wasn’t flaw-less but, fortunately, we didn’t make any mistake similar to last year when I forgot to put the entry of XIII/WoW into the 1k compo (sorry once again, buddy). The C=64 part of the compos went smoothly, the video was OK, the amplifier worked, thesound was good. There were three things where we could do better, however, me thinks.
    Concerning the immediate haps at the party, I feel a bit sorry that I and CreaMD haven’t practiced Richard’s party game River Racers a bit more. I’m afraid our clumsiness is partly at fault for its low score in the wild compo. Sorry, Richard!!!
    When it comes to the concept, the party deserved to be more of a show and I think right here is the biggest room for improvement. I heard from several sides and it’s also my opinion that with some more effort the party could have much higher balls. It starts with that this year we started the promotional campaign a bit too late and goes on with that there could have been more action at the party place than just the compos, demoshows and some new games presentations. At least these extras were mostly C=64 ones. To say something for the orgs’ defense, we in DMagic are democrats and we didn’t want to occupy the projector for the most of the party only because the biggest part of the audience comes from the C=64.
    On the other hand, this all is also a big opportunity. I personally promise you that next year there will be more action – more and higher quality presentations, more party games, more on-line competitions. Stay tuned and we’ll keep you informed! If you liked the previous Forevers, be sure that Forever Cinque won’t be an event to miss!!!

Chapter 2 – Saturday: the Compo Day

    Thanks to the already mentioned peaceful approach of the visitors even all of us organizers could take a nap. We slept in turns so that there wouldn’t be a second without an organizer awake, but as said, it wasn’t necessary. I slept for 4 hours each night at the party, thus creating my personal record there. Aware of the Forever tradition, I went to bed saying to one of the Speccy guys: „Good night, and survive the Atari techno in the morning!“ Yes, as always, it’s the Atari guys who wake up the party place with some (to my ears) horrible techno every year, every day between 8:30 and 9:00. 

DrakeHoild showing original copy of original hungarian version of Newcomer RPG.Drake (atari T-shirt) PCH and Ceti (behind him)PCH and TopSecret (Cult) Orcan (rulez!)

    As many visitors arrived late at night, the official opening of the party was on Saturday after the Atari wake-up. The visitors were greeted officially :-) and the party schedule was made public. The free compo started (everyone could compose, draw or code anything on-line at the party place), with some 7 hours of time for the participants. Special events were announced, including the Speccy IDE interface show, Metal Warrior IV Preview and Protovision Games show. Atari had their ace up the sleeve for the wild compo. Before the afternoon everyone had their time for meeting old and gaining new friends, chatting and finishing their compo entries. Especially musicians did a lot of work at the party, including the Fabulous CreaMD and Absolutely-Not-Fabulous myself who were finishing the works early on Saturday. Exile was finishing his graphics for the compo, Bugjam started drawing his free compo picture, PCH of Unreal did some composing etc. There was the usual party buzz and it felt alright. Others went downtown to have a look at the castle, kill some beers or whatever else party visitors do there. After years of tries Elban/Arise finally succeeded in organizing a football match. Originally I wanted to play as well but the organizing duties prevented me from taking part in the amazing event. What can I say? (Urk, nothing, as I haven’t seen the match.) C=64 defeated Atari 9:1 and when the heroes returned, they had the typical deadbeat-but-satisfied looks. Well done, guys! 


    The special events started with the preview of Metal Warrior IV by Cover Bitops. Lasse allowed us to show the new game intro to the public next to the game and it celebrated a deserved success. All of us game-lovers can’t but hope that the game will be finished soon. 

Presentation of Metal Warrior4 by Cadaver - game intro picturePresentation of Metal Warrior4 by Cadaver - game intro

    Then the guys from Protovision took over the stage and presented two of their projects. First was the recently finished Team Patrol – a funny two-player buggy game inspired by Moon Patrol. As far as I could notice, it features nice graphics in several worlds (wide variety ensured!), addictive gameplay and good sound. The audience cheered at the progress of JTR and MacGyver through the game, so all I can add is that the game just started shipping! 

Team Patrol - title pic - liveTeam Patrol - cool 2 player game from Protovision

    Then JTR, the HQ of Protovision, presented his game project PacIt – a Pac Man clone supporting the 4-player adapter. Also he showed a lot out of the nice intro. Unfortunately, out of the game itself the audience could see just one out of the several worlds. All in all the game offers more than we could see. JTR himself told me later that he should have prepared the presentation in more depth. Let’s hope that next year we’ll welcome the finished game at the party after so many years of development! ;-D 

Jak-T-Rip presenting latest development of his game - PacItJak-T-Rip presenting Pac-it l game animation.Preview picture of C64 version of Worms game

    After witnessing that the gaming world on the C=64 is by far not even close to death, Zilog, a Czech guy from the ZX scene, showed his IDE interface and demonstrated it on some video streaming. Shame on him, however, for he held his presentation in Czech and didn’t contact anyone out of the orgs to arrange a translation. The Czech and Slovak visitors could catch up but most of the party, however, was left out there in the cold, seeing, appreciating but not understanding. Let’s fix this next time, Zilog! I’ll be happy to translate for you if needed (although as far as I could notice your English is good, so the more I am confused). 

Spectrum guys (Zilog the inventor of new gfx conversion utility/gfx mode (sort-of)  for speccy in the middle)Audience

    The compos started at 4 PM with the Wild Compo. There were only 4 entries, but all worth the name. We failed to start with the C= Plus/4 demo because of the cable incompatibility and the other orgs did a good job finding a substitute solution to play the video tape at least on a TV. So we started with the party game supplied by Richard/TND and Civitas. As I said already, I and CreaMD were not wild enough players for River Racers. Once again sorry, Richard! The speccy scene wasn’t interested in taking a wild part in the compo, so we went on with the great Atari entries. Both drove the audience really wild. First Jookie climbed onto the stage with an electric guitar. His Atari started playing the music which is known on the C=64 from the game Draconus – and then he jumped in with the electric guitar!!! His performance was so good that in the beginning I thought it was a playback – but a few times Jookie gave up to the stage fear and made some little mistakes. No one really objected and we all could see that he was playing LIVE. Unfortunately, the Atari guys were probably afraid of damaging the equipment because the presentation would have deserved volume up! Honestly said, Jookie was my winner of the wild compo. I hope he’ll take part again next year. Then Raster/CPU asked for 16 (!!!) volunteers with C=64/Atari compatible joysticks for his Shoot’em All party game! 

16 player joystick adapter.Joystick adapter used in Shoot’em’All game.Shoot them all (Atari wild compo entry for 16 players)

   Unfortunately, he didn’t say anything about the interface, nor about the displays, but soon we could see that the objective of the game was to kill everyone else and stay alive as long as possible. The game had all the pros and cons of a party game – the immense fun factor and addictiveness as well as the limitation in graphics typical for party games and simply necessary when you have 16 players on one screen at the same time. Of course the audience appreciated the pros and cheered at all successful shots (which meant just continuous cheering) and started supporting the wildest players. Fortunately, the mad action took place long enough to fix the connection between the video player and the TV screen, so we could also present the C= Plus/4 entry by Bubis and Luca. The audience had understanding for the technical limitations and gathered around the TV to see a brilliant 16 k demo which with a less smart coding would still be applauded as a full-disk demo on the C=64. The visitors appreciated the coding perfection and put the demo to the deserved 1st place, although it was least wild in its nature. 

Jookie performing Draconus soundtrack live on guitar.Raster and XI (both Atari)

    The wild compo was also wild for the orgs. It made me a bit depressed because my main impression was that my most frequent sentences during the compo were „We are sorry about the technical problems,“ and „Please allow a few more seconds for exchanging the input connectors.“ Twice fortunately, the audience took it easier than me and after the wild compo everything went clearly, cleanly and smoothly.
    After the wild compo we made a break which included the deadline for all other compos. Of course many contributors haven’t made it and of course the orgs were tolerant enough to accept everything which was thrown in before the main compos started – and that was 6 PM. CreaMD, who always has problems with compiling his tunes from DMC 5 into some handy format, was going to play the music from the editor and I almost drove him mad when I pointed out that when we say the music must be executable, he shouldn’t be an exception. I was very close to being forever damned or simply killed right away but in the end he managed to put the let’s say 6 k music into a 109-block executable file.
    The regular compos started with the free compo. Atari guys were obviously uninterested in such a monkey business, so the five entries included a ZX intro, a ZX music, a C=64 graphics by Bugjam, a C=64 intro by Sad and Lord Hypnos of Padua named Teplaky (the Czech word for the sportswear I always have on at the party – I feel honoured! ;)) and a really nice C=64 music called PCH Real by PCH/Unreal who deserved the victory. He submitted his music some three or four times, always coming back, saying that there’s a little crack in the sound here or there. The final version was submitted some two minutes before the start of the compo! And it worked out!!! 

Elban(PL) is typing part of his diploma work live at Forever4.Prezes(PL) is coding some evil routines on speccy.

    Many people were afraid of the next event – the music compo. The previous year both ZX and C=64 had over 20 entries and the compo turned out to be a horrible marathon. For this year covers were abolished and the number of submitted entries was limited to one per musician. It produced a welcome result – Atari had below 10 entries, which is usual, the C=64 had 19 musics and the ZX scene had 12 competitors. 

Jamaican turtle

    What I really envy the Atari and ZX is their stereo – the only thing in which the C=64 standards doen’t beat theirs. I was surprised that despite the relatively low number of entries the Atari compo was of a good quality but please don’t ask me about the tunes’s names or authors. It was right before the C=64 compo, so I and CreaMD wanted everything to be alright – and next to it we both had a tune in the compo.
    It must have been unnerving especially for my brother in SID whose girlfriend came to Forever as her very first (but definitely not last) party, just *grin accidentally before the compos – so CreaMD must have been afraid whether she, instead of witnessing his triumph, won’t see him fall with face into the dirt (which, as far as I know our ambition-less CreaMD, would be everything else than the 1st place).
    So the compo started… Unlike the other platforms, we decided to make the compo anonymous to prevent the vote-for-name effect known from other parties. So the audience was always told the name of the competing song but not its author. Which of course didn’t prevent groupmates from voting members – but that’s the way life goes at parties. The only person who knew all the authors (in the haste before the compo I had hardly enough time to note down the names to announce) was CreaMD, so I had a good time guessing the authors by their sound. There were clear cases – Richard and Orcan, Factor 6 who always stresses nice melodies or Sad with the unmistakable TFX sound. On the other hand, I couldn’t figure out who did the great song called Danger Cable – and I was happy to find out later that it was PCH/Unreal. And so on… I overmodulated my instruments, as usual (my home amplifier is just more tolerant to this), but still the tune felt better than last year.
    Although we didn’t make any special order of the tunes (they were mostly played in the order in which they arrived onto the party disk), they made a good album. Techno songs followed melodic songs, there were better and worse pieces, so in the end the good ones could stand out. This was also the case of the last song. The sound was one of those you can’t confuse with any other – the glides and slides of CreeeaaaaMD, whipped by the storming drums said it out loud: „Here I am, and I want it all!“ It was just another party killer and despite I thought it would be a tough competition when I heard the song for the first time from CreaMD’s headphones before the compos, when it went its journey through the amplifier, we felt we knew the winner. The fight for the other places was tight but three tunes were able to outstand the others, so no one could really object on the next day when I announced that the 3rd place goes to PCH/Unreal for Danger Cable, the 2nd place belongs to Factor 6/ROLE and his Summer Memories, and the winner is CreaMD and his Mouth in the Foot. Right after the compos I talked to PCH and he said: „I’ve just chatted with Orcan. CreaMD has outdone us fair and square. Outdone.“ This was said by the bronze medalist and it said it all! 

Tired spectrum audience ;-) Factor6 in the fron left side of the pic.

    After the almost twenty C=64 tunes it was the ZX’s turn. CreaMD went to see off his girlfriend and I joined the audience to enjoy the ZX compo which always has high quality. The ZX musicians somehow still believe in melody more than in sound, so the Forever music compo usually consists of Atari techno, C=64 techno and melodies and ZX melodies. The Speccy orgs made a little mistake with omitting the number nine, so the tune numbered #10 followed #8 and the 12 tunes then went up to #13. It was interesting how many votesheets really had 13 tunes filled in (erm, including mine). The ZX compo was deservedly won by the great amphibian Factor 6, followed by Hood and Yerzmyey, who contributed with an unexpected oldskool tune – and gathered the fruit for it.
    The graphics compo was taken over by the C=64 entries, at least in my opinion. The entries by Leon and Jailbird are real masterpieces and I enjoyed them immensely. I would compare them only to the works of my most favourite C=64 graphician, Poision, who, unfortunately, hasn’t brought any picture to the party. Sniff. The funny picture by Xi/Satantronic from the Atari compo is another one that staid in my mind. At least Xi was rewarded with the first place for his 4-year continuous organization of the Atari section. Well done in both fields!
    The music and the graphics constituted the highlights of the night. The following 1 k intro compo saw some good competition on the Atari scene, some competition on the ZX scene and no competition on the C=64 scene. The only entry was supplied by Lord Hypnos/Padua – so he immediately became the inofficial winner, while officially our platform didn’t open this category. Something similar happened in the demo category. On the ZX, which has always been boosted with demo entries, there was one demo – compiled Basic, more a joke-tro than a demo, Atari didn’t have even that, and on the C=64 we could see another inofficial competition of two one-filers, one by Ditherer by Richard and Water by Nightlord which impressed more voters in the end. Nice filies after all but not winners if put into a major demo compo. Still – they saved our reputation as we had the biggest demo compo at the party :-) 

PCH and Wotnau

Forever Compos – the Verdict

    This year’s Forever showed several trends on our platforms. Atari is obviously unbreakable, having the smallest scene out of those at the party, but still keeping their quality level. The ZX is on a slight decay, however. While it simply ruled the compos in 2000, from then on it was losing their positions slowly to end up on the same level with the C=64 this year. Both ZX and our machine can count on technical perfection of the musicians and graphicians. The more talented guys and girls have a great tradition to follow, a lot of material to study – and they do their homework well! – and advanced tools for the process of creation. The C=64 has been the same since let’s say 2001. The Forever compos never saw a tough demo compo – but here the date is to blame, I think, as many groups have usually saved their demos for the shortly afterwards coming Mekka.
    When it comes to the particular compo at Forever Quattro, there’s just one name this year’s compos could earn: The fall of the legends. Raster/CPU, who won all the Atari compos last year, made I think 2 silvers (the wild compo and the 1 k compo – both were very close) – but no victory for him this time. The second big surprise was born on the ZX scene where Gasman hasn’t won any compo, either! I was especially looking forward to his music, as his Revenge of the Arkanoid from the fabulous Pond Life is the only music I always request at the party from our Speccy colleagues, but well, Gasman hasn’t brought a party killah this time. Ivan Roshin, a Russian musician who impressed me so much last year, on ZX, took 4th place with his entry this time – and it was the only entry in the compos which I think deserved a better ending. The C=64 scene saw another strong performance from Sad and Lord Hypnos who seem to have gained a lot of motivation since they joined Padua, and of course CreaMD. 

Sad is presenting his new music collection

Saturday Night’s Alright for Countin’

    You can stop reading here if you like and maybe check the last paragraphs of the report. You know all the important information by now and all that remains are a few more details from behind the scenes.
    After the compos the demoshows started with a fantastic demo done mostly in 3D on Atari. Not much inspired but technically good 3D scenes were mixed with some original effects. After this one I skipped all the rest nonetheless. First I’m a heretic who is not much interested in demos, and, more important, second the Saturday night after the compos is always funtime for the visitors who chat and comment on the compos, maybe in a pub, while those of the organizers who have eyes and hands count the votes. Forever has a fair system of voting – each entry is awarded 0–9 points. On the other hand, the more work it is to prepare the results.
    Another specialty of the voting system is that Forever has no special rule concerning self-voting, so effectively self-voting is allowed. The various authors took almost all the possible ways of voting – some voted 9 points for themselves and the rest they awarded with the score they thought the other pieces deserved. There were people who voted for their creation as if it was done by someone else. I saw a votesheet where the author gave 4 points to his own work and much higher scores to others. And there were noble knights who left the box for their own creation completely blank. I remember at least one person whom it had cost a valuable place on the upper part of the ladder. I was happy not to see any votesheet like „My creation 9 points, everyone else 0“. But well, I saw votesheets filled like this by groupmates (nine points for our guys, 0 or 1 for others). Nonetheless these votes haven’t changed anything about the top 3 results which were always clear and deserved. The rest of the competition was tough, though. E.g. in the C=64 music compo, there were two shared places… Always take such results as approximate. Sometimes we couldn’t but guess if a number was a 3 or an 8, a 5 or a 6 or an 8, once I had to decide between an 8 and a 0… The bloody counting took some five hours and then I took another 4-hour portion of sleep. 

Factor6 and JTNKilling ATARI demoshow (1 demo should be enough to shut our C64 mouths up) - and it was ;-(Exile’s fleamarket for anyone willing to ake this oldie hardware home.

Sunday – the Results and Bye Bye!

    Maybe you know this… You’re to a fantastic concert, you’re flying high, the interpret waves the last good bye and leaves the stage. But the magic of the night is still there. Then they turn on the lights and the magic is over – all you see is a hall full of people, trashcans overflowing with waste, everyone snailing towards the gates… The magic is over. Exactly that’s the feeling I have about party endings.
    Originally we planned to announce the results at 6 AM, soon enough for those who had to leave the party place early – but these people left during the previous evening already, so we put it off to more reasonable 9 AM. At half past nine the ceremony started – unplugged, finally, because the sound equipment had to go back to the owner that soon. I have to show all thumbs up to the audience because despite being sleepy they appreciated the winners as they deserved…
    Exile and Bugjam, our good spirits, became hardware sponsors of the party, as they gave away C=64 hardware for free – Exile to interested people and Bugjam decided to target the talented graphicians from Atari, saying he’d love to see them trying their effort on the C=64 as well. Thank you guys!!! ThunderBlade/Protovision stroke a blow against the WIntel empire donating CD’s with QNX to everyone interested. 

Pch is getting 1st prize for his musical realtime compo winner.CreaMD ;-)XI - Atari section organiser won Graphic compo ;-)

    And that was almost it… But the big shock for me still was to come… Then people started packing their equipments and leaving one after another. I as well as the other orgs had first spare moments since the party opened the gates on Friday, and I spent them mostly with my groupmates and friends. And then the surprise took place! From the previous parties I got used to that party visitors are ungrateful bastards who can’t but complain about what the organizers screwed again. This time some 80% of the leaving visitors made a tour around the orgs, shook our hands good bye and said something like „Thank you for the organization and see you next year!“ I couldn’t believe my eyes and ears. In case you sceners out there don’t know – this is the only (and best!) feedback we can get. Forever is a non-profit event. Just accidentally, this year it ended up slightly in black numbers, and the first thing Ellvis and CreaMD, who paid the previous losses from their own pockets, said was: „So, let’s set up a bank account and we have a beginning for the next year.“
    Slowly, all of the visitors left the party place and it was time to tidy up the place, carry all the tables out of the party hall to the classes where they belonged, sweep the floors etc. etc. A welcome opportunity to chat about the just finished party with the other de-organizers, as Ellvis called us at the first party. Then we returned the keys, left the party place (I could see the sunlight after two days again) and promised to each other that we’ll be there again in 2004.
    Then one of the Speccy guys brought me to the bus station where I had the luck to run into a bus going to the Czech Republic. I climbed onto it, put on my headphones and listening to Jean-Michel Jarre I was thinking what is it that drives me mad every 3rd weekend in March to cross a part of Europe and spend almost three days with people with whom I have almost nothing in common except the same brain damage (or hobby if you like) – and especially what is it that makes me so sad and draws tears into my eyes when I see the strangers leave the place when the whole event is over… I still don’t know the answer. But I hope you can help me find out next year at Forever Cinque! 

The End

Photos by:Baze/3SC (Speccy), Womana/Studio Style (C64), PCH/Unreal (C64), Poison/Singular (C64), Prezes (C64), Elban/Arise (C64), Zilog (Speccy)

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