Came across a reference to my old ansi art group in the BBS comments page and realised that I had already written pages of similar comments on bbsmates.com -- I don't know if they have any sort of exclusivity policy (or like to pretend that they own what I've put into them) but you're more than welcome to incorporate into yr records there the following comments I left describing BBSes from the 604 area code at bbsmates.com Cheers. ... Al's House of Meats (AHOM) A grand BBS experiment, where nearly every user was granted op access - which was, of course, in a roundabout manner its ultimate downfall. This is where I mention that I was the only regular user eternally denied op access, for reasons unclear to anyone - presumably an oversight, though one I've been resenting for almost a decade now 8) Evil's Voracity Really a bit before my time, this board was a buzzing hub for the generation of 604 ansi art groups prior to mine (Mistigris) - DaX, PAiN, POiSON, etc. Visionary (well, the V was actually a "root of" symbol) always marched the beat of his own drummer, in later years an aloof neutral party in semiretirement, affiliated with CiA, chuckling to himself at the epic ansiscene shenanigans going on in his area code. Last seen headed in the direction of UVic, if I'm not mistaken, but that was back in the mid-'90s. The Shadow Lands How exciting. NOT ONLY did the op make Interstellar Annihilation (a meritorious Solar Realms clone) but he operated out of the same phone exchange my parents lived in. Only looking back now do I realise how many of the BBSes I called were running from distant and outlying suburbs... Digital Holocaust / Holocaust: The Armaggeddon Onetime WHQ of NWA (New Wave Artists) and, after the merger with GRiP/AD, iMPERiAL (roughly late '92-mid '94) prior to the latter's dissolution and absorption by NATiON (or was it TRiBE?), this was an interesting place where Things Got Done (ostensibly - strict new user admission standards kept gawkers out.) One of the only artscene boards of its time to draw in long-distance callers, it was an eye-opening experience for a green lit-boy such as myself to be rubbing shoulders with the immortal Maestro and Shihear Kallizad - and find that they had not attained their esteemed positions through charisma or diplomacy. Arkham Asylum Though I have all the resources of the InterWeb at my fingertips today, none of it comes close to the availability of classic warez this esteemed underground fixture provided... unless anyone else out there knows where I can find a registered copy of Operation: Overkill ][ 8) Give co-Op Midnight Ninja some credit here. Wizard Online Home base of AmiNet techno-.MOD pioneers EuphoniX, this BBS later evolved into Planet-D - a MUD that never really got off the ground - and always featured a special relationship with Wimsey (Vancouver's earliest Internet provider) whose precise nature was unclear at best. Neo-Graceland Welcome to Mona Loa systems, Vancouver's premiere source of adult online entertainment! This fallacious claim, compounded with the joking suggestion that the sysOp was one Bob Eden (otherwise the op of K9 COPS) resulted in actual confiscation of BBS equipment (or was it disconnection of phone services?) as part of that grand hyperbolic response to "cybercrime" that seemed somehow so legitimate in the early '90s. The Pelvis of Elvis Run by DJ Moses, this board wasn't only the home to Happy Fetus Records and RADiANCE but a main instagator of DJNet and home to some of the most surreal, obscene ansi and ansimations you could ever hope to see. Atlantis This board provided a very interesting forum and set of circumstances for me... a neutral ground among the most turbulent months (mid '94-'95) of the 604's onerous underground ansi art group politics. Site of all, WHQ of none. This was the place to keep your eyes on for upcoming and unaffiliated computer arts enthusiasts. The Screaming Tomato Tragic victim of the "the adjective noun" BBS-name syndrome of 1994, this was the board I was both co-SysOp of and locked out from - on numerous occasions. >From an early start of adolescent silliness (great, a message base called "World Wildlife Wrestling Federation" - now what are we going to put in it?) this provided the base from which MiSTiGRiS was almost accidentally founded. Also WHQ of Cenobite, a lit group run by Schtroumpf gleaning from the creme of Mist's writers, it is bizarre that this BBS didn't amass more surreal artwork than it did, but when all is said and done this board probably represented the 604 to more artscene LD callers than any other. Total Eclipse II A bizarre collection of Atari enthusiasts and .MOD composers, the core of this BBS ended up on the web at http://www.trideja.com/ Crimson Helm Longterm and (if I recall correctly) final hub of activity for game venture Delphic Oracle and demo/music group Sonic Equinox. The Op, one Onyx, can be found at http://www3.telus.net/onyx and among his obscenely prolific musical output, has oodles of anime-influenced pics up at deviantart. InterZone Never knew what you were going to get - down to the name of the board! Sometimes you'd log in to find it Purple Peace Online, days later the Magical Mystery Tour, Casa del Sol, the fIFTH mOON oF sPORKLENOC ... a work in progress, probably up to and including the present. Entrance to Obscurity Ahh, ETO: the man, the board, the Legend. (that's a little pun for those in the know - for those not, what are you doing here anyhow?) Spiritual home of SONiC EQUiNOX following the collapse of Darkforce's House of Style, no amount of wheedling could persuade the sysop to take down his stylistically unorthodox ANSI screens in favor of something a little less disturbing 8) A Product of a Deranged Society / APOADS My first regular TABNet hangout - the bloody ANSI handprint welcome after login is second in my memory only to the bogus DYNIX login screen, giving a new user the impression the system ran under similar software to the library's dial-up database. Milky Way At the fullest extent to which I observed it, this board was 5 nodes featuring pretty much every door game you could imagine, registered, along with a thriving community (circa '98) almost exclusively composed of 14-year-old wrestling fans whose parents wouldn't allow them internet access. Now of course the entire internet functions at the level of a 14-year-old, but that's grist for another mill. Mindlink BBS Another case (see Discovery, CARDZ) of a BBS primarily known for the "authoritative" BBS lists originating from them... how was mindlink itself? There was some connection to an ISP, and given the merger frenzy of the '90s, who knows now who owns what owns who owns who absorbed it. Chaos Domain Vague memories. I was impressed that this board was one of the only distribution sites for ReaLITy (emphasis mine) - one of the only literary groups active in the otherwise eye-fixated ANSI art scene. Chat with the sysop was enacted through a brilliant split-screen setup where one party's words were being spake through the lips of Lucasarts' Purple Tentacle. Ahh. Random nostalgia garbage. Michaelangelo BBS Fascinating manifestation of the ill-fated ROBO/FX graphical terminal software. Looked promising, but Windows kind of blindsided it 8) Basic'ly Computers I must claim mild surprise that this BBS is no longer running - for years it remained as a solitary beacon after the remainder of the 604's (unusually long-lived in itself) BBS community had migrated to the Internet. Underground Subway It was an oldschool institution before I appeared on the local cyber-scape - and that was over half of my lifetime ago. It would not be until years later (perhaps sometime in '98) that I would encounter the hand-me-down SysOp, a fourty-something bus driver, at a 2600 meet. The board itself was (and remains) a lovingly hand-crafted ensemble of scripts, password prompts and the elitest of hardcore text-files, pre-dating ease-of-use bbs softwares like Telegard or Renegade - it was all cobbled together manually, and it worked. I never got too far into it - as a twelve-year-old, I was too impatient to work my way through the riddles and logic puzzles of the automated access-accruing scheme, peeling back board beneath board in an attempt to find the real elites. Rhombohedral System Did anyone ever log into this board? To the best of my knowledge it was a private mail point for the SysOp's (recollecting his handle as: Sorcerer) private use. Still, a Clockwork Orange reference is always classy. He brought Bob Eden's book on dog training to my first-ever TABMeet. Elite. Discovery BBS Though I was never much in terms of an active member here, it's worth noting that after MindLink! tanked (er, was bought) they became the distribution point for the 604's primary PD BBS reference source, the notorious ROXANNE SPEAR BBS LIST. Was the board otherwise meritorious? My lack of otherwise memories suggests not 8) The Jade Monkey In the end, a much better BBS name than Canopic Jars or Salopard!, my prior suggestions. (However did I end up dictating to the op the name of their BBS? Or was I to take over operations at some point? Hazy memories...) It might be worthy of some mention that this was a second venture after the Aquarium and its legendary "angry fruit salad" colour schemes. Was it also the Hallucigenia WHQ? ED-NET Ahh... a proto-chatroom for high-schoolers to speak frankly (with language filters, of course.) Can you say pedophile's playground? Bizarrely, chatting with someone here was indirectly responsible for her taking a lifestyle change resultant in becoming an internationally-renowned drum 'n bass star. Is that what they had in mind when the Vancouver School Board put this up? Probably not, but we can always hope. The Heart of Gold II Only vague memories, primarily to do with the SysOp not infrequently taking the board down so they could play X-Wing at full speed. That and that he was among the very few SysOps of the 604 supportive of my onetime efforts to mount a BBS "treasure hunt" going from board to board in search of clues, going so far to suggest masking his board's name as "secondary cardiac auric" ... sheesh, the things one remembers. Double Exposure BBS Massive, multi-node BBS hosting NeuralNet, this board hosted a party chez Lance that was my first large-scale modemer "meet" ever - and nearly my last. Even an overloud set by the infamous DJ Moses Risin' couldn't keep me there. Alpha Centauri Beyond being the 604's sole classic Celerity board, I'd give my left eyeteeth to have access to its archive of classic ANSImations. That and co-sysop Innate Malice's unreleased Trade Wars Elite: TW with ACiD-calibre ansi art. Neosporin Picking up where Atlantis left off, this board was instrumental in injecting new blood into the 604 ansi art scene circa 1996. It also spawned VOiDNet, if I recall correctly, which took off in a big way in Europe. Stonehenge BBS A tremendous crossroads - my first exposure to TABNet, compounded with Pendulum and PresenceNet nodes, beyond which anarchy and occult files up the wazoo AND appearance on the regular, "PD" BBS lists. This is where the waters mingled. Without this BBS I might not be online right now. Co-ops Wolfen and Big Time, who as it turned out grew up across the street from me. Daemon's Gate Though I don't remember much about the board itself beyond its initial position as KiTSCHNet hub, for years Mavrik was perhaps the closest thing I had to a best friend, seemingly a rock of stability in an ever-turbulent moray of what seem in retrospect tremendously juvenile cliqueishness. Had I known how completely his presence was to diminish when it began to, I would have reached out for some way of maintaining contact with him, but doubtless I mistakenly thought I had more important things to do at the time. I guess we don't really learn what we need until we find ourselves deprived of it -- FOREVER. Virtual Delusions Somehow making a transition from quasi-effective WareZ board to hotbed of conversation among an intellectual group of friends based in and around North Vancouver, we would joke to each other (regarding our compulsion to continue calling frequently) that we had "caught V.D." Never before had a poetry duel felt as though so much was hanging in the balance. Exhausted Primal Watermelon / EPW Why the partial abbreviation? For the better part of a year, EPW (or, better put, the Exhausted Primal Watermelon) was my home away from home. The flying Middleton brothers employed every trick at their availability to make this BBS unlike any you'd ever experienced before, to the length of coding a language file for a hitherto unknown language -- Tummy Grumblies -- which would replace English at all system prompts. I wasn't terribly quick on the uptake, but I will never forget being asked if I wanted to continue on the the next page with (heep / Jerry) in place of the typical (yes / No) prompt. It is worthwhile to mention SHAMTA, the Sheep Are Mammals, Too Association. Axiom BBS/Realm of Absurdity Likely my first regular BBS (I must have been about 11 or 12 at the time) I have very vague memories of its activity (during the ROA era - the board selected for the absurdity in its name) -- the grandest recollection was collective antagonism of a user by the name of Boopsie and some politics that eventually spun off onto Double Exposure BBS' NeuralNet, headed by Lord Doctor Who.
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