Chiptune XTC covers:
PUP - DVP (Official Video) (SLVimeo)
Guess the Correlation: The aim of the game is simple. Try to guess how correlated the two variables in a scatter plot are. The closer your guess is to the true correlation, the better.
After the triumph of OK Computer, Radiohead fell into a creative tailspin -- and frontman Thom Yorke into a nervous breakdown. Exhausted from touring, hounded by press, and jaded by copycats, he escaped into the electronica scene pioneered by Kraftwerk and Warp Records -- fertile ground, the band discovered. Trading spacey rock for apocalyptic brooding, they teased their new sound not with singles or music videos but with innovative web streaming and cryptic, dreamlike "blips" -- winterlands, flocks of cubes, eyeballs, bears. After nearly breaking up over tracklist angst, they cut the kid in half. Thus fifteen years ago today, Kid A and (later) Amnesiac debuted, a confounding mix of electronic fugue, whalesong, pulsing IDM, drunken piano, and epic jazz funeral whose insights into anxiety, political dysfunction, and climate crisis would make it one of the most revered albums of the twenty-first century. See the documentary Reflections on Kid A for interviews and live cuts, or look inside for much more. [more inside]
Here's a retro computing oddity, info on the first portable color computer, the Commodore SX64, with a 5 1/4-inch floppy drive and a seriously tiny CRT monitor. Here's a demonstration and teardown. Here's a somewhat ridiculous commercial for it. Commodore had a lot of unreleased prototypes, but the SX actually made it to market. Not a prototype but still interesting is Steve Gray's hack on an old monochrome Commodore PET to display color. And he also has an archive of old Commodore brochures.
PICO-8 is a fantasy console for making, sharing and playing tiny games and other computer programs. When you turn it on, the machine greets you with a shell for typing in Lua commands and provides simple built-in tools for creating your own cartridges.What does that mean? PICO-8 is like an emulator for a lo-fi game console that never actually existed. With 16 colors, 128x128, 4 channels of sound, and tight data limits, PICO-8 "cartridges" can be played -- and created -- in a web browser, or on just about any home computer, and even inside maker Lexaloffle's other, more full-featured fantasy console, Voxatron. [more inside]
The Commodore 65 (aka C64DX or C64DX Development System) was never officially released. Prototypes escaped development hell when Commodore was liquidated in 1994, and 200 have survived to this day. The complete manual can be read here (all 660K of it). One just sold on eBay for €20,500.
Tokyo 1923, the video game.
Based on Akira Kurosawa's experience with the Great Kanto Earthquake - as written in his "Something Like an Autobiography" -, Tokyo 1923 immerses the player in the midst of a catastrophe and tries to bring up questions about solidarity, desperation and moving on after a personal or global tragedy.[more inside]
Last night's Simpsons intro in all its pixelated 8-bit chiptune glory was a sight to behold and not to be missed
NES My Life "Mundane everyday challenges (such as finding a job, dealing with ultra conservative relatives, or deleting unwanted dick pics on a dating site) envisioned as classic black box retro 8bit Nintendo games." [via mefi projects]
8-bit Hunger Strike [SLYT]
Douglas E. Smith, creator of the classic 8-bit computer game Lode Runner, which got a second life as one of HudsonSoft's most iconic Famicom titles in Japan, has died at the age of 57. [more inside]
Sounds From a Fight Scene in ‘The Matrix Reloaded’ Replaced With Old School 8-Bit Video Game Sounds [SLYT]
8 Bit Renditions: hear the classics as if they were composed for the NES! While My Guitar Gently Weeps Fly Like An Eagle We Built This City [more inside]
Catachresis is an 8-bit-looking indie flash game of cosmic horror and some bureaucracy and bickering with colleagues. The launch trailer provides a selection of the reactions you will likely experience while playing it.
Text-art collective Blocktronics released it's 3rd pack last night called "Space Invaders" with over 100 pieces of text-based ANSI/ASCII art
The Wire, summarized, as an 8-bit videogame. Does what it says in pixelated graphics.
8-bit illustrations of opening lines to classic short stories by Kafka, Bukowski, Barthelme, and others. Oliver Miller, the creator of the series, writes: I... love short stories. I was an English major, and then I got an MFA in writing. Before that, I was a nerd who huddled in a basement, with his nerd friends, clicking with a mouse to play Bard’s Tale II. So basically, making 8-bit drawings of short stories encapsulates my whole life and, I hope, yours as well.
Pretty Eight Machine - an 8-Bit rendition of the Nine Inch Nails album.
In the wake of their grunge-y breakout hit "Creep" and the success of sophomore record The Bends, Thom Yorke and the rest of Radiohead were under pressure to deliver once more. So they shut themselves away inside the echoing halls of a secluded 16th century manor and got to work. What emerged from that crumbling Elizabethan castle fifteen years ago today was a shockingly ambitious masterpiece of progressive rock, a visionary concept album that explored the "fridge buzz" of modernity -- alienation, social disconnection, existential dread, the impersonal hum of technology -- through a mosaic of challenging, innovative, eerily beautiful music unlike anything else at the time. Tentatively called Ones and Zeroes, then Your Home May Be at Risk If You Do Not Keep Up Payments, the band finally settled on OK Computer, an appropriately enigmatic title for this acclaimed harbinger of millennial angst. For more, you can watch the retrospective OK Computer: A Classic Album Under Review for a track-by-track rundown, or the unsettling documentary Meeting People is Easy for a look at how the album's whirlwind tour nearly gave Yorke a nervous breakdown. Or look inside for more details and cool interpretations of all the tracks -- including an upcoming MeFi Music Challenge! [more inside]
Brother Brain is an artist who makes colorful, vibrant, seamlessly looping animations from classic video games. Click on an image for a larger version, and an annotation of the game that the image comes from.
"I started this blog so that anyone wanting to build their own 8-bit computer could learn from my own experience and mistakes."
The ZX Spectrum's chief designers reunited 30 years on, discussing what became 80s Britain's most popular home computer and gaming platform, despite stiff competition from the technically superior Commodore 64.
Any critical analysis of MegaMan might just conclude that MegaMan was malware.
Do you like Adventure Time? (previously) Do you like 8-Bit Game intros? Then you'll like the 8-bit Adventure Time Video Game Intro.
Cardinal Quest [Flash] is an 8-bit tribute to Gauntlet, Roguelikes and the 2E D&D core rule-set. Open chests, battle opponents and descend the stairs in an effort to find the
Amulet Shield of Yendor Malificent Minotaur!
Nerdcore rock band I Fight Dragons presents I Fight Ganon, a live performance of the Legend Of Zelda Theme song
8bit Killer is an interpretation of an archetypal 8bit sidescroller within a 2.5 dimensional FPS engine. It's short, fun, and free. [more inside]
The new music video for "Big Wheels" by Toronto pop/rap/rock/fun sextet Down With Webster is a masterpiece of 8-bit animation interwoven seamlessly with live action. [more inside]
8bitpeoples is an artist collective focusing on the sounds and images that came with early computing and video gaming, specifically chiptunes, or music made either with actual vintage hardware (like using a GameBoy and LSDJ) or with software emulators. [more inside]
Neutral Milk Hotel: The RPG "The band's second album, In the Aeroplane Over the Sea, released in 1998 and also produced by Schneider, is notable as a critically acclaimed and widely popular album. [more inside]
Friday Flash Fun: Realm of the Mad God is a co-op MMORPG shooter with cute 8-bit graphics. Death is permanent, play addictive. [more inside]
The Sinclair ZX81 is 30 years old today. The ZX81 was a hugely successful low-cost home computer produced by Sinclair Research and manufactured by Timex in Dundee, Scotland. The ZX81 came with 1 KB of on-board memory, for extra gaming power Sinclair produced a 16 KB add-on memory module and a thermal printer.
"Designed by Giant Robot head guru Eric Nakamura and his friend Len Higa, the car was stripped down and operated on extensively, with a simple goal in mind: transform this Scion car into one giant Nintendo Entertainment System. " The Scion Gallery and Giant Robot team up to curate "Pixel Pushers" a show about the 8-bit aesthetic. The Scion gallery's tour of the show.
TheNintendoDrummer plays drums over Nintendo music. Totally Rad. Castlevania 2. Ghosts and Goblins. Ninja Gaiden 2. Mega Man 9.
Originally a product of the simple tone and noise generators (and limited processing power) that shipped with video consoles and early computers, the 8-bit music (more properly, chiptunes) scene is now quite a bit more diverse. It covers Lady Gaga, Metallica, and Elvis Presley. It releases albums. And yes, it rickrolls. (mostly MLYT)
The Creator's Project unleashes The Eclectic Method’s (previously) latest video, Super Mario Mashup onto the world with a bonus genre-exploding montage and Q&A trying to put it all together.
What would Microsoft's Halo have looked like if it had been written years ago for the Atari 2600? "Ed Fries, former vice president of Microsoft’s Game Publishing Division, programmed an old-school version of the beloved game that features blocky graphics, deliberately basic sound effects, and simplified movements. And yet it's still recognizable as 'Halo.'" You can play it online here. [more inside]
8bit Cities: Amsterdam - Austin - Berlin - Detroit - London - New York - Paris - San Francisco - Seattle - Washington, D.C.
Mountain Maniac is a new flash game from PixelJam, the team behind Dino Run and Gamma Bros. Guide boulders down the mountain to destroy the city below. It was made along with Sausage Factory, a rhythm/recipe/meat-grinding game, for Adult Swim's 8-bit rejects.
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