The First C64 Demo That Doesn’t Run on the C64, Because it Runs on the C64 Floppy Drive

Are you keeping up with the Commodore?

Matthias Kramm just became a demo scene legend for creating the first Commodore 64 demo that doesn’t run on the Commodore 64. Kramm’s demo, Freespin, runs on the Commodore 1541, that’s the model of the Commodore‘s floppy drive.

The video and audio are both processed on the floppy drive, and Kramm explains everything on his blog including how he made the floppy drive generate a video signal, generated the music, loaded the demo into the floppy drive, and got around the flickering 50hz output of the C64’s monitor to record the video.

The global demoscene centers around creating audio and visual demonstrations that are either impressive for what they can do on limited hardware, or go far beyond limitations to do more than could be expected. So in that sense, it is maybe somehow less surprising that this would happen because of course after making demos fit into smaller and smaller amounts of storage or memory and other limitations the demoscene coders would eventually say “screw the C64, I’m going to run the demo on… the floppy drive!”

To someone who enjoys the demoscene results and will never make a demo, I’m still very impressed.