Snacky / Technology Revoke Copyright,
Added on January 10th, 2004 (7620 views)
Tell us something about yourself.
Siegfried Jagott, turned 30 this year, born in a small North Bavarian town nearby Nürnberg called Schwabach/Germany. My birthday is May 22nd. I still reside in the city where I grew up and where I cracked over 50 games, Rednitzhembach. I'm working for Siemens Business Services in Münich as a senior consultant, project manager and topic manager for Windows 2003 and Exchange 2003.
What handle(s) did you use and how did you come up with it/them?
One of my first games on a floppy disk was Super Cycle. I remember playing this game in January 1987 and during that time I was searching for a cool handle. The highscore list had the entry Snack + Pack and I thought that it would be a cool nickname if I just added a "y" to Snack and removed the plus and Pack. Snacky was born! I never changed it because the name was a kind of quality stamp on our releases, and these days, people immediately remember my cracks on the C64 and PC when I join a chat on the net.
What group(s) were you in?
1987: Technology Revoke Copyright (TRC), 1988: Mafia and Exact, 1988-today: Genesis Project (C64). 1992-today: Genesis Project, 1992-1994: Razor 1911, 1994: Legend and Genesis (PC).
What roles have you fulfilled?
I was a swapper and a cracker on both the C64 and the PC. I was voted Cracker of the Year in 1990 on the C64 and I got on the Best Three PC Crackers list in 1993 and 1994.
How long were you active for?
Between 1986 and 1994. After that I was rather inactive but I kept in touch with the current scene. Maybe you'll see some Xbox releases from me in the near future. :-)
Tell us about those years and how you got into the scene in the first place.
I started on the C64 in 1986 and built up my own group called TRC (Technology Revoke Copyright) in January 1988. By then, I began to program intros and demos and I traded games with several groups like The Wanderer Group. A group called Mafia, which was located in Düsseldorf, asked me to join and I did. After just two months, a group called Exact was born and the whole Mafia crew joined. I coded demos and intros but I also began to crack games as this was something I always thought was interesting. In the summer of 1988, Genesis Project (at that time in cooperation with Fire Eagle) asked me to join them as a coder. Antichrist was my main contact and we released some demos and I coded my largest intro ever which was about 40 blocks long. My first crack for Genesis was Flintstones. In December, I released my first real quality crack, Rambo 3, which had several nice trainers. I got more and more originals and after my first IFFL version of Forgotten Worlds, people started to recognize me. My vision was to do quality cracks, and so I played all games to the end, just to make sure they worked a 100 percent. People often said that they kept my cracks as they knew that they always worked. That's something to be proud of! I was voted Cracker of the Year in 1990 which was the top of my C64 career. After that I became quite lazy as I started a full time job. My last crack on the C64 was Heatseeker in 1991.
At the Genesis Party in April 1992, I met some PC guys from Supremacy (M.Bob, Olga, Widdy and Weasel). At Oktoberfest the same year, we agreed on starting Genesis Project on the PC. Olga and me did the coding and Widdy the graphics. M.Bob was our software trader but he also learned himself how to code. We released several cracks and in December 1992, Razor recognized me and asked if I wanted to crack for them and I agreed (on the PC, it was normal to be in more than one group). I released several games under the Razor label and got quite well known. I think the hardest one to crack at this time was Day of the Tentacle 2 which took me a whole weekend to fix.
Describe a typical day for you in front of the computer.
That's an interesting question. For me, a day looked like this: I got a phone call, even during the night, with the news that a new game was on the way. Me and the supplier agreed on a time when he would send me the game. There was no such thing like the Internet, and so it was always either a direct call to the supplier or a call to a mailbox or a BBS (Bulletin Board System). Once I had the game, I sat down and tried to crack it. People from my group used to call me and ask at what time I expected to be finished. On an average, it took one day on the C64 and approx one to two hours on the PC. I participated in phone conferences most evenings and cracked in the afternoons and weekends.
Did you personally invent any special techniques or tools to make things easier for you?
Yes, IFFL and "Jewel" versions of a crack. Back in 1988, games got bigger and bigger and you often had a lot of files that took too much space on the disk. My first vision of smaller and faster loading was to move levels in the memory, like I did with my version of Hollywood Poker Pro. I had one file per girl and I saved about a half side of a disk! Nobody recognized this at first but after I released a one side version of a two side game (all other cracks used two sides), people started to realize what I was doing! I was the first one to use this technique and later on, more and more people asked me how I did this. OMG and me gave the whole thing a name: IFFL which is short for Interflexible File Loader. I later wrote IFFL v2 that made it possible to copy several files into one sequence and mark the offsets. My last invention in the IFFL technique was to create a fast loading IFFL which also supported IRQ loading. Hell, it was a great time when people talked about what I was doing and how so much space could be saved by levelcrunching and binding files together. The best thing I've ever done was that I packed a game from one side to only 70 blocks! The name of the game? Gotcha!
Jewel was Genesis' own brand for superior quality. A jewel version was well trained and bugfree. Doing a jewel version of a game was our mission. Think about all those cracked games you played that crashed after running for half an hour. I really hated that, and so I made an enormous effort to play all games to the very end. As far as I know, I was the only cracker to do this back then.
When you look at what you did back then, what are you most proud of?
When I look back, I'm most proud of the fact that I was a part of a computer development cycle. The C64 was one of the greatest computers ever and I was recognized as one of the leading persons on it. I'm also proud of the friends I got and I'm still in contact with some of them after 15 years. Hell, do you remember Goblin, Antichrist, SCI, Weasel, M.Bob and Widdy?
Who were your heroes on the scene and why?
Mr. Z from Triad, The Wanderers, Yeti and Dynamic Duo for being true C64 legends. Ivo Herzig (Mr. Cursor) for his incredible copy protection Timex which was far ahead of its time. Rob Hubbard for being the best musician around! I still love to listen to W.A.R.
What, for you, was the coolest thing ever invented on the C64?
The C64 itself! Thank you very much Commodore for this masterpiece of computer science!
Did you go to any copy-parties, meetings or tradeshows?
Yes, I went to several Radwar parties in 1989 and 1990 and visited The Party in Denmark a few times. I also organized a Genesis copy-party in Nürnberg in 1989.
In your opinion, what was the scene all about?
The scene was a playground for young computer maniacs with too much energy and spare time. Lots of envy and tales surrounded it, but the inner circle knew each other. It was like a group of people who had a common interest, but it wasn't anything religious.
What were the particular highlights for you?
Game: X-Out and Turrican. Game Protection: Timex from Ivo Herzig.
Any cool stories to share with us?
I think I've already told you some. Maybe it's of interest that I was caught by the police twice. The first time nothing happened but the second time they caught me at the post office where I used to pick up the post daily.
Are you still in contact with any old C64 people today?
Yes, I'm still in contact with Antichrist, SCI and The Goblin from Genesis and many others via e-mail and IRC at times.
When did you get your C64 and do you still have it lying around somewhere?
I still have my very first C64 that my mother bought. It's been enhanced as I installed Speed Dos in it but it is the original computer on which I cracked all my games. Operational? Yes, I just have to turn it on. However, I prefer to run a C64 emulator on my laptop when I'm on business trips. I just don't have that much time when I'm at home.
Was the C64 really as special as we like to think it was?
It was the first of its kind and the most special computer in computer history!
When can we expect to see some new C64 output from you? :)
I don't want to re-crack anything and we'll see what'll happen with the un-released stuff.
Do you have a message for your old contacts and/or anyone reading this?
I want to thank all of you for one of the most wonderful periods in my life. I loved to spend the time and effort to give you some of the best game releases back then. If we lost contact, please send me an e-mail! I always like to get in contact with people from the C64 scene. If you want to get more information on me or Genesis Project, please visit our webpage on www.genesis-project.de.
back to the list of available interviews