FireDance 3D Screen Savers
Protologic Software
Tetratel EyeFX edition
Review by Christoph Bungert
September 7, 1998

The FireDance CD features 23 computer rendered animations with sound and music. All animations are excellent. They usually tell a little story and are highly entertaining. The stereo-effects are great. Sound and music are done professionally. FireDance will become my new reference software to show friends and family what Stereo3D is all about.

Using shutterglasses there are a few problems though.

1) First of all despite the fact that the animation player is a windows program, the animations itself run in standard VGA. I don't know of any utilities to change the refresh rate of such a mode on any VGA-card. This mode is stuck at about 70 Hz on almost all cards. Flicker can't be eliminated.
2) All animations use large parallaxes and some of them in high contrast, resulting in ghosting.
3) There are lots of objects coming way out of the screen, which is really great sometimes, but many of them clash with the left or right border of the screen. This looks odd and destroys the 3D-effect in this area.

All these problems vanish if the animations are viewed in the way they were made for  - with a stereo capable HMD, such as i-glasses, VFX, CyberMaxx or others. This stuff is the the best I saw so far on my CyberMaxx. Actually I fell in love with my CyberMaxx for the first time.

For LCD-shutterglasses users this CD is highly recommended, for owners of a HMD it is a must-have.
Firedance is available from Tetratel Corp. for $29.95.
Hardware Compatibility:

As I said before the animations are done in standard VGA, using line-sequential stereo-format. The animation files have a *.ves extension and seem to be a proprietary format for the Protologic player. They do not work with a standard player on the windows desktop. The files will play on HMDs - i-glasses, VFX, CMaxx, etc. - and for shutterglasses with "line-blanking", such as EyeFX and VR-Joy. The H3D has a line-blanker too, but it won't work with such a gem, like FireDance, because the H3D people give a damn about 3rd party software.
Compatibility with other shutterglasses depends on your 3D-driver-software and your skill to get the lo-res standard VGA mode into interlace or page-flipping format under Windows, which should be quite hard.

Content of FireDance:

Mythology series

Minotaur.Ve Theseus and the Minotaur
Icarus.Ve Dædelus and Icarus
Egypt.Ve Egyptomania

Space series

Space.Ve The Boreallian Nebula:
"The last A-Planet class 5 defence outpost"
NASA.Ve The Navigator probe: In homage to the people of NASA
Invader.Ve Toyaliens: Earth Invasion

Famous Cities series

Volcano.Ve Herculaneum: the forgotten city
Maya.Ve Mayan City: Raider of Lost Treasures
Dodge.Ve Dodge City Tornado
St_Paul.Ve London's St. Paul Cathedral
GoldGate.Ve San Francisco's Golden Gate airshow
Firework.Ve Washington DC 4th of JulyFireworks at Capitol Hill

Ritual series

FireDanc.Ve Stonehenge's fire dance
WingsWar.Ve Wings of war
Aperture.Ve Apperture: Biomechanical metamorphsIn homage to Philip K. Dick

Painting series

Fly.Ve A fly hunts and the perpetual illusion of time measured by melting clocksIn homage to Salvador Dali
Faint.Ve And Life let out an agonizing scream...In homage to Edvard Munch

Bric-à-brac series

Shark.Ve Shark Attack
Pool.Ve Q-ball
Chess.Ve Chessanation
Gothic.Ve Gothic

Music series

Bethoven.Ve Life's SymphonyIn hommage to Ludwig Von Beethoven"Music: Discovery, passion and poetry; Music for combustion; Autumn Cantata; Beethoven ascending"
Imprompt.Ve Impromptus: A rock on a roll