Amiga and Commodore news and topics not covered in the other forums
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intric8
Seattle, WA, USA

by intric8 posted Fri Dec 14, 2018 10:43 pm

You guys have to check out this UK Ebay posting.

The history alone, as recounted by the seller, Mike Clarke, is very cool.

The machine isn't visually pristine, but what's on the inside is pretty awesome. Not to mention the initials carved into the top of the case are actually kinda awesome when you realize who did it.

psygnosis-3000-1.jpg
psygnosis-3000-2.jpg


From the Ebay posting:

About this Amiga 3000:
This is a truly unique, one-of-a-kind Amiga 3000 as used by various artists at Psygnosis. I've had this in my possession for over 20 years.

I (Mike Clarke) worked at Psygnosis from 1992 to 1999 doing audio and this was one of a number of machines that had been placed in a corridor ready to be thrown out.

I rescued them from destruction by getting permission to take them and this has been with me ever since.
It has 2MB Chip RAM and 4MB Fast RAM. All parts, including the battery, are still original.
It has sat in a quiet dark place for long enough and now it is time for someone else to enjoy it and give it a new lease of life.

History
It was first used by artist Jeff Bramfitt. Computers often bounced around different people at early Psygnosis and the 3000s were highly prized by the artists because of the built-in flicker fixer. Jeff was quite protective of his and so scratched his initials on the top of the case in pen just in case someone took it off his desk. The very first time I met Jeff at a visit to the offices before I worked there, he was working on the title screens for Carthage so he must have been using this machine then. The wide-eyed young me could never guessed that I would be in possession of such a precious machine nearly 30 years later.

This was the actual machine used to create the original Amiga
Lemmings intro and logo (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipGRA3oRLwk).
Usage on Psygnosis Games

Jeff has confirmed that he used the machine for various bits of artwork on the following games:

Carthage (1990)
Infestation (1990)
Shadow of the Beast II (1990)
Air Support (1992)
Killing Game Show (aka Fatal Rewind, 1991)
Obitus (1991)
Lemmings (1991)
Aquaventura (1992)
Shadow of the Beast III (1992)
Combat Air Patrol (1993)

After moving on to another machine (probably an A4000 at that time), it was used by Chris Moore, Darren Douglas and Digby Rogers for at least the following games:

Theatre of Death (Amiga)
Last Action Hero (Amiga)
Bram Stoker's Dracula (Mega-CD)
Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (Mega-CD)
"Beat'em up game" (probably Phoenix Rising Mega-CD, unreleased)
Microcosm (3DO, Mega-CD)
Scavenger IV (aka Novastorm, Mega-CD, FM Towns)
No Escape (tie-in with the Ray Liotta film, aka Penal Colony Mega-CD, unreleased)

The usage of the machine for the above games is confirmed by the files still contained on the hard drive. There are various other bits of unused and in-progress artwork on there as well. It was likely used on other games as the hard drives were sometimes backed up onto banks of 100+ floppies and then wiped for someone else to use. I think the above games were all in 1993, which was a very busy year because we got bought by Sony and alongside working on games by third-party developers, Sony pushed all of these film licenses onto us and gave us almost no time to make them.

After I took the machine home, I installed Bars & Pipes on it and used it briefly for music. It was only for a very short time as I soon got an A4000T, so nothing I did on it was used in released games
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Shot97
Detroit, MI, USA

by Shot97 posted Sat Dec 15, 2018 7:29 am

Interesting to see Psygnosis had some kind of direct hand on Lemmings, as DMA designed it and Psygnosis was the publisher. I mean I've always pointed to the publisher as being more important than some people realize, if only in spirit, but at the very least they have the final say and have the power to tell the designer to change something, or to not change something. So good or bad, it's not wrong to note publishers.

Except for U.S. Gold - They mostly took U.S. designed games that were published in America by another company and simply re-branded it to Europe. I get very annoyed with people noting U.S. Gold rather than the original American publisher.

Anyway; Psygnosis must have thought Lemmings was lacking something on its own, and it looks as if they made the games intro. The entire 1st disk is devoted to that intro, by the way, while the 2nd disk contains the entire game. haha
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intric8
Seattle, WA, USA

by intric8 posted Sat Dec 15, 2018 10:12 am

It is interesting that Psygnosis - and this machine - is credited for having done work on the game and the intro like you said.

Now that I think about it, there were some games that would change names from time to time depending on the market, and their title screens (and sometimes box art) would get reworked. My guess is in cases like that the publisher would be the one responsible for the art changes in the intros. Another World / Out of This World / Outer World comes to mind. But with Lemmings it feels more like a partnership since this was the first one. Pretty neat stuff.
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Shot97
Detroit, MI, USA

by Shot97 posted Sat Dec 15, 2018 10:59 am

I know that Out of this World, which was published by Interplay in America, not only had the name change from Europe, but Interplay heavily wanted to alter the soundtrack, in which the creator refused. Console version took out some pixels in a nude butt shot, though the Amiga/DOS versions retained those pixels (it's not prudish American's, it's the children who had consoles).

World Circuit in America was a more heavy example. And that was the same publisher both in Europe and America, Microprose. Changed the name/title screen, and all nearly 200 pages of the manual to say World Circuit.

Battletech, designed by Westwood Associates but published by Infocom, that game is written like a text adventure through and through, there's influence from Westwood no doubt. And in the end, they took full responsibility for the game, noting in the manual that if you have problems with the game, you'll be calling Infocom! - Someone on Twitter told me when I reviewed it that the European budget release had a much smaller manual which did not include the star map, required to beat the game.

The opposite can sometimes be true. Wing Commander, designed and published by Origin in America, was ported to the Amiga by Mindscape, and I think distributed by them as well, even in America, though Origin's logo was still plastered over everything. In this instance the so called designer really had less to do with the game than the original publisher, Origin. It was their creative genius, Mindscape just ported it.

Nobody ever talks about who distribute the games, which can be different than the publisher. Seems like Electronic Arts would distribute a hell of a lot of Amiga games in America, games that they neither designed nor published, but they'd take some kind of cut, probably because they could more efficiently put the product into the stores that sold Amiga stuff. I've noticed certain magazines giving the Gold Box games some credit to EA, even through they neither designed nor published them, EA received no credit, not on the box, not in the game, nowhere, yet I've seen magazines say SSI/EA for those games.

Speaking of the Gold Box games, U.S. Gold published them in Europe, but again, they're on the utter lazy end of publishers in that they didn't do anything really. They took an already released game and simply sold it in the places where an American company did not have a presence. This is why Microprose had locations in America and Europe, so they could publish it in both places, rather than go through someone else. A-Train was a game from Japan that Maxis really liked and brought it over to America. I think they messed with that game more than most publishers would.

This computer gives direct evidence of those publisher tweaks. Though personally I wouldn't be selling it nor buying it, "It belongs in a museum!"
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obitus1990
USA

by obitus1990 posted Sun Dec 16, 2018 8:28 pm

For shame the original battery is still there... it's leaked everywhere if you look at the pics.
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Shot97
Detroit, MI, USA

by Shot97 posted Sun Dec 16, 2018 9:34 pm

Just looked at the pics, didn't realize there were some of the innards. Yeah, battery is leaking, though it's still salvageable, and obviously runs. Interesting that the version of DPaint used says "Color" instead of "Colour" which means it's an American version. Wonder if Psygnosis was doing a little piracy themselves...
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Bulletdust

by Bulletdust posted Mon Dec 17, 2018 2:44 am

It sort of shocked me how the seller advertised this particular A3000 as having the original battery like it was a feature!

I shudder to think of the mess in there.
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codevark
Sutton, MA USA

by codevark posted Sat Jan 26, 2019 8:32 pm

Nice machine.

I worked briefly for Psygnosis around 1991 in their tiny US office on St. Mary's street in Boston, MA. Did some game "testing" :) and some database stuff for them. Previously, I sold Amigas at LCA Computers in Norwood, MA. Easiest job I've ever had ha

I have a working A500 with an ICD AdSpeed and a Dataflyer HD expansion, two working A3000s (one very expanded - still one of my day-to-day desktops), 2-3 other non- or maybe- working A3000s, and an A2000 with an HD. I had a CD32 but the audio was broken so I sold it to a guy who could fix it.

LLA!
Pete
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intric8
Seattle, WA, USA

by intric8 posted Sat Jan 26, 2019 9:46 pm

@codevark, the 3000 is one of my persona windmills. And one I've kind of given up on. They are simply drop dead gorgeous and so cool, but damn. Getting a working one these days I'm probably better off putting that money on an iPad pro or college money for the kids.

Maybe.

But man - good for you! That's a totally sick collection you've got there. Pics, please!
<3
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McTrinsic

by McTrinsic posted Sun Jan 27, 2019 2:34 am

Any soft left from back then ?
<3

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