"It's like a diskmag, but somehow it isn't!" - The Sunday Times.
"Curiously self-indulgent." - Trenton Webb, Despot Monthly.
"Surely CiH has overreached himself this time?" - Melody Maker.
"Most unconvincing." - An old bloke, London Evening Standard.
"Well, I liked it!" - Thom Nipplethwack, Garden Shed Monthly.

I've done some silly things in my time, as those of you who were regular readers of the Maggie Disk Magazine will know. This web-page represents possibly the silliest thing I've done yet! With the hope that there are even more bizarre events still to come as part of a long and incident-packed lifestyle.

But Why?.

It was the dark winter depths of the early months of the year 2001. I was casting around for something, well, different, to do for the forthcoming Error in Line Easter Coding Competition. This was going to be a diskmag, because that's what I do, but the normal format of text on page seemed dull and pedestrian, and somewhat 'seen it all before'. Then the idea of ASCII hit me!

The idea first came in the form of doing some sort of ASCII-art strip cartoon for the diskmag that I currently co-edit, the Alive! mag. That is where the ASCII-Nation name first arose. Thoughts then turned to making something altogether more ambitious with an Error in Line (Easter 2001) release date in mind, which is where the crazy Star-Wars parody thing came in!

The Empire Goes Phrrrt!

Anyway, about two and a half months work later, and we ended up with this! Don't bother listening to me, just get stuck into these!



This needs an Atari ST, Falcon, or a suitable emulation of either to run. You might be interested to know that the ASCII-Nation diskzine managed to win second prize in the Wild Competition, or possibly not?

Some New Stuff!

Here are a few bits that I have done since the rather all-out approach to the epic above! For a kick-off, here is the chapter that came after "Love Conquers All". Which goes into some of the misadventures of the more interesting sidekick characters, officially titled 'R & R', maybe it should be better titled "Hormones and Hopelessness"!?

Here is a mixed-up melange of concepts and half-baked ideas, mostly with a 'creature' theme attached. Hence the name...

And for a little coding party called Error in Line, I did a couple of competition entries for the Ascii-Art competition. I've even included the results file, read it and weep!

He's just some guy you know, but he's cross with EVERYTHING!

Disobedient Robotic Pop Idol!

Finally (for now), here is something totally different, my first major character development since the faux-Star Wars gang that made life on this web page so memorable. So I invite you to meet the future of music, the wizard of sound!!

    ,____       ,            .          __ _  ___ _  ____ __ _  _          
    \    \      |          _.;..;._    /A-one, A-two, here we go \     
     \ _  \ _    \ _      / __  __ \   \with a little number that/
      '_'  '_'    '#'     )<@.||.@>:   /I tossed off earlier!    \          
                          \   Oo   /   \                         /           
                           ('<__>')    /ANCHOVY ROUND THE U-BEND!\          
                   *     _ '-\__/-' _  \WHY DID YOU GO THERE?   _/         
                  /     /--X /  \ X--\ /YOU WERE MY FRIEND!   /           
                 /|     \    \  /    / \OH ANCHOVY JOE,       \        
                  |     [],   ||   ,[] /YOU WENT WITH THE FLOW \- -- -.   
                  '     []|   ''   |[] \BUT I'LL STAY TO THE E-E-ENDD!/    
                  |     []'~~~[]~~~'[]  --- --  -- -- -  ---- -- - - -       
                  |     /> \  /\  / <\                                      
                  |        | |  | |                     
                  |        '='  '='                     
  ------~~~~---- === ---- /_/ ---\_\ -----~~~~-------~~~~-------
(I love Judy Dench, she lives in a trench, her name rhymes with stench!!?!?)

If it weren't for those meddlin' kids dancing on top of my car, I'd have gotten clean away with it!

*Not* borrowed from an idea in Viz comic, honest!

Erm this one might have some relationship to a story in a well-known adult comic as well!

He's out for the count, Count Dracula, that is!

Ooh look! It's something different! Simon Bowell gets the Dickens adaptation treatment, with a unique and never-to-be-repeated version of Scrooge's "Christmas Carol"! This one is a straight textfile, but normal cartoon service will be resumed before too long..

The Good Ship Imponance!

It's space, but not as you know it!

                   ,             .     __.----.____
  .       .               .    .      / /_ . . :'  \
    .          .               .     |          .  ':    .     .
 .          .             .       .  |  /|\      '..:                        .
    .    .                   .        \____________/       .
                            _____         / /         .         .
                    _ -----'     '----__.///.                 .
                  |' ---  =  =  =  =         \_         .
               .  '  :::. . .::::.. ,,,,::.    |            .    *
                   \.    ' '               '  /      .
    .                \. .                     |                   .
                       \ \  " " """ """  " "  \.__.     .-_
 .       .              |/                      <  \  .'   '-_______
        -*-      .      :      .                >  || === =
         '              '\  .:::... ...         < .// === = _-------
                          '\             .___.___._'   '._-'      .
 .         .                \  ._ .  o   |       .             .             .
       .                     \|  \.____  /   .             .     .
  .       .                   '---___---'       .     .

This is the start of the hinted-at follow-up to the original Ascii-Nation "The Empire Goes Phrrrt!", series. Some of the supporting characters, the more alien and weird ones (based on real-life Atari scene personalities!) were going to go off and roam around in a convenient starship-shaped plot device for more improbable adventures.

Anyway, nothing much happened, until now. Here are the first couple of attempts at doing something with this format. More updates to follow when I can be arsed, etc, like all the other stuff on here.

In this first adventure, not having got Sigourney Weaver on the crew roster, the gang decisively avoid an 'Alien' encounter!

A musical encounter with one of the stranger bad guys from the original Star Trek series!

Sometimes I recolour stuff!

This small gallery is culled from the Star Wars ASCII art collection, originally put together by Lennert Stock. I went just that little step too far, and recoloured a large chunk of it, using the purpose-made four colour text displayer of the Alive! Atari-based diskmag. Actually, it is the four colours displayed by the test shell program, which turned out to be somewhat more attractive than the actual colours chosen for that issue! Seb, lose the black and the brown next time mate!

Note:- This is *not* ANSI colouring, but a four colour scheme taken from a custom disk magazine text displayer using weird control codes. Doing that lot is real scut work, I can tell you!

Sorry this took so long, but I did warn you when this page went up, that this ASCII business is very much an "as and when" sort of business. I have got another project coming up with some more of that character based artform, but you will have to wait until next year to see it, Easter to be more precise, and it may well be in a form that definitely needs one of those funny little grey Atari computers, or an emulation of the same, that I love so much to see it.

Watch this space people! - CiH, in a belatedly reappearing sense, July 2002.

Update in July 2003, this has finally arrived, so go here. for something to blow yer brains out!

Some Cool ASCII-Art Links and Miscellaneous Stuff.


Where it all started. If there is a mentor or inspiration to do this kind of thing, then blame the Boogaloo! This started life in the Maggie diskmag as an irregular regular ASCII-cartoon story. The creator of these is a chap called Jody Smith, crazy name, barely less crazy guy! He is still around, and doing things connected with the 'Big Brother' tele series. Anyway, the Boogaloo strips that have survived the years are here for your pleasure below.

The Red Baron!

I found this whilst checking out what the other ASCII-artists were doing, and this is a brilliant and long-running ASCII-cartoon by a chap called Ool.There is also something in there titled 'Space Opera', which sort of looks like the kind of thing we've been doing here? Check it out!

To get at all the associated wonderfulness, go to his website here. WARNING! The link has gone, and I'm not sure where it has got to, anyone got any ideas here?

Probably the Best ASCII-Art Collection on the Web!

This is the collection by Andreas Freise. It is very extensive, and best of all, it is all viewable as plain text files, rather than ASCII in HTML, which is often a bit of a disaster on non-MS browsers. July 2002 note, the site has moved, but the link has been updated.

Okay, we're all done for now. Go and read something else! It'll be a little while before this page gets added to, but what will come will be worthwhile. In the meantime, have a nice life...

(C) CiH - 2001 to 2006..