The Cyclone's X-Troll Website

  Sprite Magic 
  Final Swobbler 
  New Year Demo 
  Digidrum Demo 
  Outline 05 Entries
  Dbug 191
  Outline 06 Entries
  Outline 07 Entries
  Ourline 08 Entries
  Block Editor 
  Lethal Xcess
  Super Magic Tool
  Danger Zone 

  Pooz Editor


Press Releases

X-Troll at Pouet
About us

X-Troll Demos - Overview (Text only)

The Longscreen 
Sprite Magic 
The final Swobbler 
The Cyclones New Year Demo 
The Audiopac Demo 
Digi-Sound Demo
Outline 2005 Boot Sector Compo
Cracktro for D-BUG Menu 191 
Alive Jukebox
Outline 2006 Boot Sector Compo
This page contains only the descriptions for our intros and demos, if you want pictures use the links on the navigationbar on the left. You can download each demo by clicking onto the screenshots.



This one is really bad. It's a 1989 remake of my very 1st assembler program. The original source was written in 1988 and so I put this demo here, even when it had been released one year later as a joke. Nothing is awkward enough for us :-) This has to be the worst intro ever.




This little music demo was coded to show the capabilities of the chiptune replay routine by Nexus 6 to a local software company. The tunes itself were composed with MEDI, which is the short form of Music-Editor. MEDI was a very early editor for Atari ST chiptunes it has none of the advanced features of today's chiptune editors but it was able to produce very CPU-friendly Atari ST tunes.



The Longscreen

The Longscreen was coded in 1988 by Sunnyboy and it featured graphics by Nexus 6. This screen scrolls a lot of screens in one vertical blank while loading the graphics from disk with an interrupt loading routine. These disk-routines are the origin of the fastest copy-program for the ST, the Turbo-Booster.




In spring of 1989, we visited the "Hobbytronic", a computer fair in Dortmund (Germany). The Hobbytronic had it's best times in those years. We always bought computers and electronic-stuff directly on that fair and it had been the best place for having a glance at new hardware. It was the time after the 8 bit age, 16 bit computers and consoles arose everywhere with new and advanced features. For example the NEC PCengine was presented on that fair, and I was amazed by the games Dynatex showed on that tiny console. While walking around the fairgrounds, we accidentally met Marc Rosocha and Klaus-Peter Plog (Plogi / Blue Devil) from the Gigabyte Crew. As I realized that they were talking about an Atari demo, which was displayed on a monitor. I addressed them and asked some silly questions. (I had not done a real program on the ST at this time.) Everything was rather new and interesting to me, and as I figured out that these guys were coders from the Bladerunners, I was really amazed.

While we talked, Sunnyboy and Nexus 6 joined us. They watched the demo Marc had coded and decided to do this little demo right after the fair. 

It had been inspired the demo Marc showed us, he displayed something about 60 sprites in one VBL. Sunnyboy and Nexus 6 wanted to beat that record, but it wasn't that easy, because Marc's routines where already optimized very well and nobody thought about generated code at this time.

Finally they had done one or two sprites more than Marc, which was not very impressive. To make it look more, they coded a demo that showed 120 sprites in two VBLs. Not one of our brightest ideas. Marc recognized the cheating immediately despite we had used slow movement for the sprites to cover this fact. 

Anyway the SpriteMagic demo was saved to disk together with a new version of our scroller, which had been done before the fair, we only changed the scrolltext.

If you want to see this demo make sure you use TOS 1.0 and exactly 1 MB of RAM, otherwise you will see nothing, because of some "optimizations" in screen flipping which only work on a one meg machine ;-)



The final Swobbler

The final swobbler, which is a horizontal picture distorter, had been the result of a Troll internal competition. In the end Sunnyboy and Nexus 6 had the better code.

Their routines where fast enough to draw 200 lines (with music), while mine could only render 197 lines (without music) in one vbl. As some kind of punishment, I had to draw the graphics. Because I never painted anything on the ST before, I used an ASM Cover for "inspiration" and converted it to the ST pixel by pixel. This robot was one of my very first computer graphics, and I think it's not very well done but we used it anyway.

We don't cheat in any way in this demo and with generated code or a specially designed picture (the picture can be replaced by any other 4 bitplane 320*200 pixel graphic) we could have drawn more lines, but we needed only 200 lines to fill an Atari lo-res screen. 

As usual everything had been done quick and dirty and so it runs on Saint 0.99 if you switch to 1 MB only (you have to because it only works with exactly 1 MB). If you want to look at it, just download this disk-image with the complete Source (GFA-Assembler) and the executable program. If you want to replace the disted picture, just copy another "BLOBL.PI1" to the root directory.



The Cyclone's New Year Demo

Since Sunnyboy and Nexus 6 did all the coding and left the graphics part to me. I felt the need to code something for myself. So I decided to do a project on my own. The whole demo is not exactly what you would call stunning, but the process of coding this demo improved my coding skills a lot. Since I had problems with my electrical equipment on new years eve, the demo had been finished on Jan. 2nd 1990. You can read the details in the scrollers.

I hadn't intended to release it to the public, but I gave it to some friends and so it happened that this little demo had been spreaded. It had been included in some compilation disks like POV (Persistance of Vision) disk 99. The demo is called "Trolls New Year" there, you can download the POV disk 99 from PaciDemo.

The demo consisted of 6 screens which had been done in a hurry. Above you see the welcome screen. The lower border had been removed. There was palette animation (wow), a horizontal distorted Troll logo (that looked like hell). Besides there had been a XY-distorted Cyclone logo and some sprites.

This is the main menu, I think it's the best screen of the whole demo. There is a lot of movement on the screen and I still got all the blue rastertime left. I simply didn't know what to add because I had been satisfied with the result.

The picture above shows the greetings-screen. Instead of naming all the crews in the scroller I cracked their demos and ripped the needed logos to send the greetings in a different way. The lower border had been removed. There is a scroller, a disting text, some sprites and a synchronized Troll-logo that fakes an overscan in the upper screen.

The hall of fame should be called the hall of shame. It's a lame screen with some nice looking rasters and sprites. I had some serious problems with movem and timer B at that time. It's a very old screen which should have been the hiscore-list for our abandoned jump and run game.

Well what should I say, Sunnyboy and Nexus 6 nearly killed me when they saw that screen :-) but, the girl mentioned in that screen is still my girlfriend (since 1987) and we have two very nice children today. There is a reset Demo hidden behind this screen, which reveals some interesting but maybe dangerous effects. To force the anxious guys to switch off their computers the scrolltext in that reset demo isn't very nice. The effects are activated by pressing some keys at the end of the scrolltext. I guess you have never seen your drivelight illuminated to this brightness before. Unfortunately you won't see that on any emulator. Don't use the screen killer, it's really dangerous on real hardware.

The picture in the reset demo was ripped from the game "Teenage Queen" and it was "improved" a bit :) by me. The joke on that thing is. I wanted that picture from the TCB loading screen when I saw it. And because I didn't own that game, I began to hack into the Cuddly demo when one day later some pal from the university dropped a pile of disks on my desk. Guess, which game was on one of those disks. It would have saved me some work if he came up with it one day earlier.

The Multiscroll is a cover of one of the Union Demo-screens, but this one comes with 6 bit samples generated by the crappiest hardware ever (sounds like hell). It had been my 1st and last attempt to produce sound on the ST. When I coded this screen I thought I had beaten the Union, but that's certainly not the case. Yes I play a crappy sample yes I have two more scrollers, but I can't change the speed of the scrolltexts. (You can change the speed and direction of the three background layers with Numpad 1-3 to select the layer and cursor left/right to increase/decrease the speed afterwards) It would be not problem on a ST with one megabyte to include the variable scrollspeeds, but it is a problem on a half meg machine.



The AudioPac Demo

The Audio Pac Demo had been done by Sunnyboy and Nexus 6 on their own. They managed it to hide the whole project until it had been finished. Maybe they wanted to decrease the damage which my New Year Demo had inflicted as it slipped through my fingers and reached the outside world.

The Audio Pac Demo is mainly a music demo with some nice side effects. You can play Pacman while listening to all the tunes. There are rasters all over the screen as well as some nice sprites. Besides some borders (left & right, bottom) are removed in the lower part of the screen.

After cracking and ripping all our games, there where still some bytes left and Sunnyboy decided to hack the union demo. Encouraged by the easy progress, He attempted to crack the cuddly demo once again and succeeded. Every bit of chipmusic was ripped and packed into this demo. If you want to look at it, just download this disk-image it runs perfectly on Steem 2.2 or Saint 0.99.

As a side effect of this demo we learned how to code "real" joystick and keyboard routines and simple game logics. That had been a important step towards a real game. 




Another Demo I wrote was the Neoshow, it's just a picture slideshow with a top and bottom overscan, and a scroller in the upper border, where the left and right borders were removed too.

It starts with some partitial overscan, stars and a big X-Troll logo which looks absolutely terrible.

The Neoshow shows some of the pictures Nexus 6 and I had painted. It's nothing special and there are only very few pictures on that disk, but maybe you like it anyway. The Neoshow runs on STEEM 2.3b, it won't work on an earlier version.




In spring of 1991 Nexus 6 was also involved in the development of Lethal Xcess, he coded his own digi-drum routines and editors for the ST and put some stuff together in a small music demo.

The tunes at the top of the screen are the original Lethal Xcess tunes. The other ones haven't yet been used anywhere except for "Cyclones-Memory" which was composed for a memory game I wrote.

After selecting a tune, the demo will automatically switch to this screen with three loudness indicators, and some kind of pixelart. I think this demo will run fine on all machines with any TOS.




One year after finishing Lethal Xcess Sunnyboy coded several little sound demos with quartet tunes that had been composed by Nexus 6. They all looked the same and were only technology studies, this means not working outside a debugger.

However Nexus 6 grabbed the sources a few years later and assembled a nicely running version, since it was for internal use only, you won't expect a clean exit. Reset your machine after watching.



Outline 2005 Boot Sector Competition

To add some entries to the Outline 2005 boot sector compo, we decided to polish some old boot sectors from around 1990 and Cyclone wrote a new one with some zooming Keftales. Thanks have to go to gwEm for supplying the buzzing sounds.

Cyclone's Keftales ranked 2nd, while Sunnyboy's ancient scroller achieved the 3rd place.



D-Bug Menu 191 Cracktro

On short notice Cyclone wrote this small cracktro within a few hours, originally the menu should have been released a few days later, however it seems D-Bug were quite in a hurry after leaving the title rest for 15 years ;).

Feel free to download the whole menu disk by clicking on the screenshot above.

Credits for this Intro:

  • Code: Cyclone / X-Troll
  • Music: Nexus 6 / X-Troll
  • Pixels: Cyclone / X-Troll
  • D-Bug Logo: Pursy



Alive Jukebox - 2nd Place at the Outline 2006 Wild Compo

When we heard people complain about the huge CPU consumption of decent chiptunes we were thinking about a way to put an end to that. And honestly we were also bored with jukeboxes that just had a menu and a small scroller on screen. So what can be made better? 1st of all "make everything bigger", 2nd "stay synced to the music". This cried for more information than you normally get from the YM and Cyclone asked Dark Angel to add an information interface to his music replay routine for Music-Mon.

This interface supplies all the necessary information like which instrument is played on which note, you can also get a readout of the sample which is currently played. That was a major step to finishing this demo. However, due to the fact that some of those tunes need about 70 percent of the vbl our attempt was quite minimalistic. If you use tunes which are more dedicated to be used inside demos you can do a lot more, but the aim of that demo was only to establish an example of the potential of the interface. We hope other jukeboxes will use it as well in the future, therefore we will publish example code in Alive 13.

1.  Intro  Dark Angel  
2.  Bootro  Stu / Dropdabomb  
3.  Danger  Stu / Dropdabomb  
4.  Machine  Stu / Dropdabomb  
5.  Insectz  Stu / Dropdabomb  
6.  Fluffy  Re?mo / Dropdabomb  
7.  Bass  Re?mo / Dropdabomb  
8.  Retina  Stu / Dropdabomb  
9.  Sorn  Marcer / Alive Team  
10.  Gimme  Marcer / Alive Team  
11.  Datadance Remix  Stu / Dropdabomb  
12.  Atari UCR  Stu / Dropdabomb  
13.  Here we go  Marcer / Alive Team  

You can support the composers and order the EP from Retinascan. However if you just like to download some MP3s they are also available there.



Boot-Plasma - 1st Place at the Outline 2006 Boot Sector Compo

Again the question was, what would be possible with 512 bytes, or even more precise 480 bytes if you subtract the reserved bytes for the disk information. This time Cyclone created a plasma with some synchronized 15 kHz sound.

Even if the boot sector exits to the Desktop I'd recommend a complete reboot afterwards since a few programs seem to have problems with some leftovers in RAM.


X-Troll a demo crew on Atari ST, Atari STE and Mega ST 16 bit computers was founded in 1988 and consisted of Sunnyboy, Nexus 6 and the Cyclone. Their releases were: Acid-Intro, Sprite Magic, The final Swobbler, The Longscreen, The Cyclones New Year Demo, AudioPac Demo, Digidrum Demo and the best Atari game ever Lethal Xcess, the follow up to Wings of Death.

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This page has been updated 04.05.2008