Wednesday 10 March 2010

On typography

Traditionally, typography has an important place in demos. We use text for various reasons:

  • To name the demo (i.e. "Dreamchild")
  • To name our group ("ASD")
  • For all credits ("code: navis, music: Amusic" , or shorter: "navis, amusic etc.")
  • To greet other groups ("rgba, fairlight, mfx etc.")
  • To name the event (i.e. "presented at Assembly 2003" )
  • To write scene poetry ("We used to exist.. used to dream.. blahblah")
Adding text is an easy way to add 30-40 seconds of content and give your demo a chance to take a short break from its usual flow. Everybody expects to see at least the name of the demo, group, credits and greetings, it is part of the demoscene conventions.

But I do have a problem with it. When I present demos to the public, people always ask me "What/how the hell is fairlight, rgba, mfx etc." and then I have to explain. That was one of the reasons why there were no greetings in Rupture (the other, more important, because there was no place for them).

I haven't made my mind yet about what will happen with all the typography in "Iconoclash". But if you don't see your group greeted don't worry - yet again, function follows form.


  1. In doubt, I think it's best to remove any text that does not participate directly into the demo's effect.

    Most of the info stuff could just as well be presented towards the end in a credit section. Although I liked how you integrated greetings in 'beyond the wall of eryx' .. If it's obscure enough, then it works.

  2. The demo title and credits are pretty much fine I'd say - remove them, and people no longer know what it is or who made it (especially if it's shown on a big screen somewhere and they're not looking at a readme).

    Greets though, I think are not needed at all. They're just tradition, from the time when demos would come via the post and people would not be in contact much. Now we talk all the time, on line or at parties.

    I decided a while back that if i get time for a serious demo, it will either have no credits or the credits will be hidden in the scenery somehow (I figure that way people won't ask "wtf is this list of strange words?", and if they see a group name somewhere they'll perhaps go online to search it out and find out more about the scene as a result..)

    (lol.. the verification word is 'compo' :D )