1985 – The first steps – The K.G.B Crew from Wuppertal :
Every story has a beginning – that of T.S.A. already lies several decades back in a time when computer users were still considered freaks and oddballs. The story begins somewhere in Wuppertal in 1985, where a group of teenagers were not content with just playing Commodore C-64 games, no – it was to be the beginning of cracking computer games. A suitable group name was quickly found and from then on the teenagers acted as K.G.B or K.G.B Crew !
The K.G.B Crew was not among the biggest names in the scene, but they delivered „clean“ work. There were even intros and small demos and they made a good name for themselves locally in the scene.
1986 bis 1987 – I´m the One – Orgasmatron :
About a year later, in the neighbouring town of Remscheid, a couple of teenagers – let’s just call them Frankie, CCO and Terminator – wanted to get active on the then still very new Amiga.
A name for the new crew was also needed and was found in the Motörhead song – „Orgasmatron“. There were, for example, the „Alien“ demo and the „Samanta Fox“ slideshow with – for the time – well-digitised pictures.
The O.G.M. – Orgasmatron Crew was born.
The legendary Demo Scene graphic artist Terminator made his first real appearance here. Among other things, he pixelated the fantastic O.G.M. One, which was modelled on the logo of the first German television station A.R.D. at the time.
Terminator aka Arno Seiler was also responsible for the alien graphics of the O.G.M demo „Alien“.
1987 – O.G.M + K.G.B + M.C.P = Tristar :
In the summer of 1987, graphic designer Arno Seiler (Terminator) created a logo with the word „TRISTAR“. Frankie, the founder of O.G.M aka Orgasmatron Crew, decided that a new crew should be founded based on the fantastic logo and the melodious name „TRISTAR“. This logo already set standards at that time and has not lost any of its fascination until today. Quite a few Amiga users were animated by it to create their own graphics.
However, other groups were to join TRISTAR because TRI = 3. O.G.M then got in touch with the K.G.B Crew and in the end it was agreed that the K.G.B Crew would also act as TRISTAR in the future. A third part was still missing, this was realised by „M.C.P“ who was actually nothing else than Arno Seiler. From then on, Arno was integrated into the TRISTAR group as the third part, the „Terminator“.
In 1987, at the beginning of December, a first demo was released which became known in the scene as the „TRISTAR – Stars“ demo. Tristar was very active on the Amiga and the Commodore C-64 and could already fall back on a well-developed network of contacts, which had already been built up in the years from 1985 to 1987 by the K.G.B Crew and, to a lesser extent, the O.G.M Crew.
Merchandising in Tristar : The Boulder demo was the most expensive production so far. But what was at least as costly were the mass-produced stickers that Delaware had financed and commissioned. The year 1988 also brought some visits from the police and corresponding house searches. Frankie and CCO therefore went into hiding in 1988. For a short time, Tristar also ran as Paramount but quickly continued successfully under the label „TRISTAR“.
In 1989, the Alien Woman demo was released at the Paranoimia Demo Party. Grandmaster „Terminator“ once again outdid himself and his skills earned him, among other things, a job at the then company „Starbyte Software“.
Tristar was doing well, one might even say too well. There were BBS systems in 1990 and they were at the peak of success. But the activities around the cracker industry and other even more problematic things caused the mega bust and this brought the central „business“ to a standstill.
In the spring of 1990, Delaware, then the leader alongside Frankie, CCO, Flynn and Terminator, experienced his last day. The activity in Tristar but also other offences brought Delaware into jail in the end. The C-64 division continued for another 1 to 2 years, mainly led by T.M.A., who later founded the group Abyss Connection.
Under the table, Tristar continued to run on a local basis, but the so-called distribution network had largely collapsed with Delaware and its connections.
In the summer of 1990, Flynn merged TRISTAR with Irata’s RED-SECTOR to form the demoscene group TRSi. However, this was to cause trouble for many years afterwards, as this solo effort had neither been discussed with nor approved by the other leaders.
In 1998 Delaware got back into the business. Things had changed since the Amiga and Commodore C-64 days, but they still knew their business and TRISTAR was continued with a motivated crew who knew the FXP business inside out. Gandalf took care of the „strategy“ while Delaware took care of the „day-to-day business“. TRISTAR was soon ( again ) on the road to success in this area, but what was still missing was the flair of those days with graphics, design and someone who knew enough about PHP and SQL. A professional was needed.
In 2000, Gandalf met up with a former old faithful from the Tristar years, a then simple insignificant „courier“ or simply put. „Copy Negro“ who had delivered floppy disks on his bicycle.
This person called himself AMItac at that time and together with a RaMiReZ had the project Netacs – NET_work mani_ACS running, which dealt with the topic of „Amiga emulation“. Both had basic and valuable experience in web and network administration.
Gandalf poached the two and the Netacs project came to a standstill as TRISTAR simply demanded everything that was available in terms of time and knowledge. RaMiReZ and AMI quickly became board admins and also took care of the maintenance of the board, which was based on VBulletin 2.x at the time.
AMItac was appointed leader of Delaware at the end of 2001, but due to family and work commitments he could no longer devote the necessary time to lead the team. AMI was also confirmed in this role by the founders, Frankie and CCO.
AMI was responsible for the organisation and technology, but also set up a small Demo Scene Crew in parallel to the Tristar BBS, which was all about hacking.
In 2004, FXP activities were discontinued, and shortly afterwards the FBI launched Operation Fastlink, which hit the warez scene like a storm and brought many sites and FXP activities to a halt.
At the end of 2006, the WareZ server activities that had continued for 2 years from 2004 were also terminated. It had simply become too time-consuming and with the advent of 1-click hosters such as „Rapidshare“ – new, more convenient ways of accessing data emerged.
In 2007, a server was purchased for the first time and numerous services were realised on it, such as Internet radio, online gaming and later, in 2011, I.R.C and X.M.P.P. These were the years of learning and trying out new technology, which only became possible with a „root server“.
In 2012, an agreement was reached with the demoscene group TRSi that TRISTAR would not release any more demoscene or warez productions. This should finally put an end to the long-standing dispute about who is allowed to do what.
However, TRISTAR itself still continues its activities in other areas such as networking and server technology and is also a FIXED part of the DevLab Hackerspace facility.
on 15-09-2012 T.S.A = The Solaris Agency was founded by members of the following groups.
- Abyss Connection
- Flash Arts
15-09-2012 – The Solaris Agency ( T.S.A ) :
After reaching an agreement with TRSi not to release any more releases under the TRISTAR name in the demo and warez scene, it was time to form a new group.
They met on 15-09-2012 especially for this occasion with the leaders of TRISTAR , Abyss-Connection and Flash Arts in the former Billiard Center in Wuppertal Barmen. ( Alter Markt ) and founded T.S.A – The Solaris Agency.
The name had previously been selected by vote in the TRISTAR BBS, where AMI’s „Solaris“ and JB-TEX’s ( Phoenix ) „The Agency“ had garnered the same number of votes.
It was now time to create an appropriate logo. It should have something to do with 3, just as TRI_STAR symbolised the 3 groups that founded it.
By the way, AMI decided to take back his old nickname from Netacs times, which was AMItac. After that he started to construct a corresponding logo which contains the 3 – but also stands for the word „TRINITY“ : the Trinity…
However, T.S.A. was to produce very few demoscene releases over the next few years. Instead, they discovered their great love of gaming and began to make Let’s Plays and „chilling“ away comfortably for some time.
Strictly speaking, in the years from 2012 to 2018, the T.S.A Retro division was largely occupied with recording Let’s Plays of games and publishing them on YouTube. The demoscene was of little interest to the team. In addition, web development came to a virtual standstill after a data crash in 2012 that destroyed the entire RAID system.
In the period from 2014 to 2018, there were also private and family reasons why T.S.A. was only running on a low flame beyond retro / modern Let’s Play gaming. The world outside took its toll…
2019 was the year in which things finally moved forward again in T.S.A. AMItac planned a large-scale relaunch of the Web Base and the services, and in spring 2019 the first major project was launched. The own cloud including some complicated extensions. At Evoke 2019, T.S.A. finally gave a sign of life in musical form, realised by „Professor-Cox“.
At the same time, the web development of the CMS system continued with the aim of creating the BEST and most comprehensive network in the scene. In the course of 2019, many of the services were completed, such as „Teamspeak“, „IRC“ and the radio.
The year 2020 also saw the return of the „XMPP“ chat and the „Mail Services“. In addition to the services, work also began at the beginning of 2020 on the development of the website based on a CMS system, which will be fully in place by the beginning of 2022. A very extensive project in which 2 years of work will be involved at the „provisional“ end of the development.
2020 was also the year of „AMI run“. A jump and run game that was released at the demoscene party „NoVogue“. This game includes 10 levels, several music tracks and could have passed for a full-price game. A C-64 intro and sounds from T.S.A and DevLab were also released at Evoke 2020.
2020 – Die T.S.A and DevLab e.V :
On 15 July 2020, the hackerspace group, which was still known as ProtoLabs until the end of 2018, moved into a physical location together with T.S.A and TRISTAR. Now known as DevLab, the joint decision was made to operate their own hackerspace where engineering, everything to do with digital art and creative work in general are put in the foreground.
One of the goals of Hackerspace is to offer interested people the opportunity to realise ideas themselves, ALSO based on recycling and upcycling, in the spirit of sustainability and non-profit. Our goal is to act in an environmentally friendly way and to further advance the idea of „urban self production“.
In the Devlab, the following machines for material processing and construction were acquired by winter 2020.
- A 4-axis CNC Milling Machine.
- A conventional Lathe ( 30 x 300 mm working space. )
- A laser-assisted Drilling Machine.
- A self-constructed large-volume 3D Printer.
- 2 x Smaller 3D Printers.
- A Plastic Shredder.
- A Circular Saw.
- Various Metal, Plastic and Woodworking Tools.
- Furnace for Plastic Melting Operations.
Further acquisitions are already planned for 2021.
In addition, the Hackerspace has extensive IT and multimedia technology. There are 2 computer workstations with the following equipment.
- PC with modern 3D hardware and 2 Screens.
- Laptop with equally modern equipment.
- CAD / CAM computer for the CNC Milling Machine.
- Video Beamer System for Präsentations.
- 1 x Video Camera for Live Streaming and Recording.
- 1 x Video Camera with „Tripod“ and various accessories.
- Audio System for Multi User Conferencing.
- LTE Internet Unlimited. ( If Major User is present )
Further acquisitions are already planned for 2021.
The DevLab also has a fridge, a 2-burner cooking device and other little things that make working in the hackerspace as pleasant as possible for us. A corresponding video and audio collection thanks to Netflix and Amazon also ensures that we can simply enjoy a good film together. Ideally with a delicious pizza and a nice Faxe can of beer.
By the way, in winter 2020 we applied for the joint foundation of DevLab T.S.A e.V. which will then enable us to operate under German association law.
DevLab now also has its own website hosted by T.S.A and maintained by our „Don“. By the way, you can find this page here:
The story continues, from T.S.A – DevLab and TRISTAR.