The first demo I remember seeing on Commodore’s wonder machine the Amiga was Doctor Mabuse Orgasm Crackings’ Demons Are Forever, running on a display machine at the local independent computer shop and it was something of a revelation compared to what little I and the shop’s other teenage hangers on had seen from the 16-bit generation to date as well. With the Atari ST for example, the graphics had unsurprisingly improved from what we were used to on 8-bit systems but sound hadn’t noticeably moved on at that point.
Demons Are Forever pushed the quality bar upwards by quite a distance with well drawn, colourful graphics, detailed animations, fluid 50FPS sinusoidal movement and an amazing, bespoke Soundtracker module from composer Frog which matched the on screen action well, something that wasn’t commonplace in demos of the time. There were already loads of demos with sprite sinuses so this wasn’t a first – the same developers’ previous release Spaceship did something similar but far less involved, relying on the Amiga’s hardware sprites rather than blitter objects – but Demons Are Forever stood out for beefing up the presentation, offering lots of potential movement patterns for the objects and by having those beautifully drawn transitions between the balls and titular winged creatures.
Because of all that attention to detail, Demons Are Forever is fondly remembered by demo watchers to this day and its influence on the scene at the time can’t be underestimated either; it spawned a couple of fairly direct clones for the Atari ST and C64 for example and was at least a partial template for many demos which followed.
And just because I can, we’ll finish on a bonus video of the aforementioned Spaceship demo from DOC; it was called that because… well, it’s got a whacking great bias relief spaceship scrolling past with hardware sprites swirling around over the top, Amiga rainbows on some of the playfield colours, a starfield in the background and SLL’s excellent “Hymn To Yezz”, a tune I’ve “covered” a couple of times over the years.