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Wednesday, December 27, 2000



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Cro-Mag Rally Wear, Pangea's Next Game
9:47 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

An update to the Pangea Software web site notes that they are now selling official T-shirts for their newest release, the 'kart-racer' Cro-Mag Rally. At only $15, they're not a bad deal for the CMR fans out there. We talked a bit with Pangea president Brian Greenstone this morning, and he also noted they might be having some fun with the T-shirts at the upcoming Macworld San Francisco, so stay tuned.


On the game-front, Brian is working on an OS X version of Cro-Mag Rally and will likely not release any more updates until it is finished. It is coming along well, and we'll be sure to let you know once it's closer to release.


Brian also let us in on his next project, which is already in the design phases. Here a bit more info:

We've started the design for the next game and that it will also be OS X and OpenGL. All I can say about the next game is that it will be in Space. But the concept is really awesome! Very unique.
This is obviously very early in the game's stages, but it is always good to see Pangea is churning away on another Mac-only concept. We'll be sure to bring you more information on Cro-Mag Rally and upcoming titles as we get it. In the meantime, if you haven't taking the CMR demo for a spin, you are definitely missing out; be sure and grab it today!

Cro-Mag Rally Demo 1.0.6 (40 MB)
Pangea Software Web Site
Cro-Mag Rally T-Shirt Page
Pangea Software
Cro-Mag Rally



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Heroes III Complete Ships
4:53 PM | IMG News | Comment on this story

MacNN is reporting that 3DO's Heroes III Complete is now shipping, available by direct order only. This boxed set combines an updated version of the original Heroes III with two full-length expansion packs formerly only available for the PC crowd.


Although it is only available directly, we are hoping this title will also appear on store shelves; we've contacted 3DO about his and will see if other methods of purchasing this title are established. In the meantime you can read more about it by perusing our past articles on the subject and visiting the official web site.


For those of you that already own Heroes III and are irked at having to buy this game over again, PC Heroes 3 players who wanted both expansion packs would end up paying $99 ($39 + 2x$30) for what Mac users are now getting for just $39; the version of Heroes III: Restoration of Erathia included also has several minor bugfixes and updates as well. Watch IMG for a review of this title in the near future.

Order Mac Heroes III Complete
games.macnn.com
Heroes III Web Site
IMG Heroes of Might and Magic III Review
Heroes III: Complete is Gold
Heroes III Complete Coming to the Mac
3DO


Xconq Mac 7.4 Released
3:15 PM | IMG News | Comment on this story

Available for five operating systems (and soon for Mac OS X), this general-purpose, open source strategy game system has received an update. If there is a strategic battle you want to model, you can re-create it in Xconq with the built-in game description language; it seems to be an excellent teaching tool as well as a learning environment. According to the author of the Mac port, a Carbonized version will be available soon, as will the ability to play network games. Here are details on the new version:

Xconq is a general strategy game system. It is a complete system that
includes all the components: a portable engine, graphical interfaces
for Unix/Linux/X11, Macintosh, and Windows, multiple AIs, networking
for multi-player games, and an extensive game library.


In addition to Xconq's "standard" game, which is similar to the
classic Empire/Empire Deluxe games of years ago, the game library
includes games for ancient civilizations, the Peloponnesian War, the
Roman Civil War, Frederician strategy, Napoleonic strategy, Gettysburg
at a brigade scale, the Russian revolution, the Normandy invasion,
WWII at scales from tactical to grand strategic, Beirut street
fighting, voyages of discovery, African exploration, and many others,
including space and fantasy games.


As befits its emphasis on strategy, Xconq's forte is turn-based play
using overhead views of a tiled world. The world is basically
two-dimensional, although varying elevations are available for games
that need elevation effects or line-of-sight. Xconq is especially
interesting for games about unusual or lesser-known strategic
situations; it is unique in providing a single system for modelling
the conflicts and strategies of any period in history.


To set up new types of games, Xconq includes an interpreter for a game
design language (GDL). While the syntax resembles Lisp, GDL is a
declarative language, where you create a game just by defining the
properties of types and objects, and then filling in tables describing
their interactions. There are literally hundreds of properties
available, and hundreds of tables relating units, materials, terrain,
and advances.


In addition, the game designer gets a collection of nearly a thousand
graphic images available for use in games, including unit icons,
terrain tiles, and national emblems. The designer may also import
additional graphic content.

Sounds like a great way to build your own game, or explore all types of strategic warfare. And if you are a programmer looking for examples of cross-platform code, Xconq seems a good place to start as well.

Xconq Web Site



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Myst III: Exile Poll on DVD Version
11:02 AM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story

In the recent past the official web site for Cyan and Presto's upcoming adventure title Myst III: Exile has been updated with a poll intended to gauge demand for a DVD version of this title. Games in DVD format are quite rare on the Mac and PC platforms, but are especially well-suited to games of the adventure genre, as these usually ship on multiple CDs and are essentially linear. Not only does a DVD version allow for all the data to be held on a single DVD, eliminating CD-swapping, but it even has room for additional features.


The poll added to the web site asks if you would be willing to pay slightly more for a DVD version, as described below:

As many of you have heard, plans are underway for a special DVD collectors edition of MYST III: Exile.

This collectors
edition will include a special Squee toy, Strategy Guide, The Making of Myst III: Exile, the soundtrack and Atrus's Journal.

We would like to get an idea how many people might be interested in this package.
The price will be $49.95 USD and be available by ordering online. Please complete the poll on this page (once per person) to give us an idea how many would consider ordering this product.

The game itself is due within the next six months, and from the images and movies we have seen it seems a worthy addition to the MYST mythology. Check out the web site for more details, and be sure to read our extensive interview with Susan Weyer of Presto Studios.

Interview: Myst III's Susan Weyer
Myst III: Exile Poll
Presto Studios
Ubisoft
Myst III: Exile
Buy Myst III: Exile



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Oni PS2 Screen Shots
10:41 AM | Jay Swartzfeger | Comment on this story

Rockstar has released over two dozen new screen shots of the PlayStation 2 version of Oni, and
Inside PS2 Games grabbed every one of 'em for you to check out. Oni's
anime-style action combines some of the best elements from
third-person shooters with in-your-face fighting, creating a whole
new gaming experience never before seen on a console. Oni also
features breath-taking indoor and outdoor levels and impressive fluid
animation.


As the game is identical on all three platforms, PC and Mac users alike might also want to see these nifty screen shots. Follow the link below to see them, and grab the demo to see this game in action.

Inside PS2 Games
Oni Demo 1.0 (77 MB)
Bungie Studios
Gathering of Developers
Oni
Buy Oni



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Greenstone on Mac Gaming 2K
10:36 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story

As the end of the year 2000 draws near, now is a good time to look back and reflect upon the year in Mac gaming, and look towards the future as well. Certainly 2000 was a banner year from any perspective, considering that Mac gamers enjoyed not only the release of many A-list PC titles (some simultaneous with the PC releases) but also the emergence of serious, Mac-savvy 3D hardware (the 3dfx Voodoo5 5500 and the ATI Radeon Mac Edition). However, we decided to ask the publishers and developers themselves what they thought of the year in gaming, from their industry insider perspective.


Our next Q&A is with Brian Greenstone of

Pangea Software, a company which has been making Mac-only titles based on the latest Apple technologies for the past six years. A champion of Mac-first development, Brian has created such worthy titles as Mighty Mike (a.k.a. Power Pete), Bugdom and the just-completed Cro-Mag Rally. Here are his replies:

IMG: What are you thoughts on the Macintosh game market? Was this a good year for Mac games? Or is it in a decline?


Brian Greenstone: I think it's sad that there is hardly any original development on the Mac anymore, but at the same time, I'm happy to see so many PC games being ported. It was a good year, for sure. The shelves at CompUSA have more stuff and more of a variety of stuff than I've seen in ages.


However, I don't see the Mac game market growing at all anytime in the for seeable future since I think it has reached it's maintainable saturation level, and with the old iMac's rapidly becoming obsolete due to their inability to be upgraded with better 3D cards, I think the marketshare will remain constant.


IMG: How has your company fared this year? Are sales going well?


BG: This was a very good year for us. We've sold over 23,000 copies of Bugdom which isn't bad considering that most people got the game for free with their iMac and iBook. So far, our Cro-Mag Rally sales are going very nicely as well.


IMG: Looking to 2001, what things need to be done (either by Apple or the market) to keep growing the Mac games market?


BG: Apple needs to have a way to upgrade the 3D chips in older iMacs. Developers needs to return to doing more original titles which will really make the platform shine. Right now the Mac is stuck as a "me-too" platform. The days of Myst and Marathon were far more exciting.


IMG: What's #1 on your wish list as far as the Mac market goes?


BG: More original development. I can't say that enough times.

Our thanks to Brian for his replies. Watch IMG for more thoughts from developers on the year 2000 in Mac gaming.

MacPlay on Mac Gaming 2K
Pangea Software
Pangea Software
Bugdom


Unreal Fortress Build 300 Released
9:48 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story

The folks behind the popular Unreal Fortress mod have released a major update to this team-oriented mod for Unreal Tournament. It includes the following changes:

Gameplay

Awards fixed for humans in multiplayer games

Dispenser and Sentry kills produce hegative frags if team mates are killed

Wrench Jockey award fixed



Classes

Saboteur's emp grenades increased to 2

Fixed marksman improve sentry bug

Fixed HG improved rate of fire for sentry



Weapons

UnZoom command fixed for Marksman

Minigun now ejects shell casings

Tranq-gun correctly sized in 3rd person

Toolkit correctly sized in 1st person

Toolkit now disables sentries

Flame thrower alt-fire fixed

Rocket Launcher alt-fire fixed

Rocket Launcher reload crash fixed



Grenades

Claymore improved in network play

Rotation bug on Laser tripmine fixed

Laser tripmine laser aligned to lens

Fixed EMP disabling sentry bug

Fixed a Claymore that destroyed by damage prevented demo from throwing another



Equipment

Improved base accuracy for sentry

Sentry doesn't fire until enemy is within range now

Sentry attachments now have individual ranges

Sentry tracking turn rate increased

Sentry rocket speed increased

Sentry flamethrower damage increased



Mapping

New keycard model added as flag replacement
To download the Unreal Fortress mod, be sure to head over to Macgamefiles.com.

Download Unreal Fortress from MGF


CVGS for $0.00?
9:26 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story

Occasionally the cuthroat, razor-thin profit margin world of online stores produces an anomaly worth noting, and this one is a doozy. According to DealMac, if you buy a copy of Connectix' Virtual Game Station, their PlayStation emulator, you get two rebate coupons. If you mail them both in they effectively negate the cost of the emulator, bringing your grand total to $0.00 -- and overnight shipping is free!


CVGS is Connectix's amazing virtual PlayStation console that runs hundreds of PS games at full console speed. If you own an aging PlayStation or just have access to a library of games, this is a VERY cheap way to move your gaming where it belongs -- on your Mac. In any case, take advantage of this deal soon, because someone is going to figure out what's going on and shut it down!

Dealmac Details on CVGS for $0
CVGS Listing on Outpost.com


Ray Swartz on 3dfx End
8:40 AM | Lucian Fong | Comment on this story

Ray Swartz, the man behind the 3dfx RAVE driver for both Voodoo3 and the Voodoo4 and 5 cards,
has made several interesting posts in the XLR8YourMac forums.
He discusses his feelings on the 3dfx acquisition and hints at the
possibility of continued Mac driver development, though by what means we are uncertain, as the source code for the Mac drivers will become the property of NVIDIA if all goes as planned. Here are some excerpts from his posts:

I have no bitter feelings. This was the best job I ever had. I got to
spend a year working at home, getting a lot of exercise, spending plenty
of time with my 7-yr-old daughter, going to WWDC and the Expos, producing
stuff that made a difference to 3dfx's great fans. I learned a ton about
writing drivers.


Right now, I'm sick with pneumonia, so I'm not working until after Xmas.
Also, Nvidia hasn't made me an offer yet, so I'm wondering if I can stay
in the Mac driver business.


Regarding DV and Nightfall: these work fine on the V5, and at times they
have worked on the V3. The underlying Glide support for the V3 seems to
have gotten buggy. For instance, I fix Combat Mission and then Quake is
broken.


Before I do the next release, I will test CM, Quake, DV, Nightfall,
Bugdom, and Water Race and there's definitely a chance I can get
them all to work.

Don't get your hopes up yet as very little word has come out of the
3dfx camp and, in all likelihood, they will be dissolved early next year.
Ray also mentions that the leaked Voodoo 4/5 drivers are the first to detect
when Connectix' Virtual Game Station is launched and issue a false report
that the card is actually an ATi chipset, fooling CVGS into working properly. Ray also notes that NVIDIA has not offered him a job; none of the other ex-Mac driver team members from 3dfx have been made offers either, to our knowledge.

XLR8YourMac 3dfx VIdeo Card Forums


Urban Terror Mac
6:00 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story

Recently the makers of one of the top "Realism" Mods, modifications that simulate real-world weapons, released an update to their creation, Urban Terror. Apparently, as is the case with too many mods for Quake 3 Arena, this mod wouldn't work with the Mac OS version of this shooter. Thanks to the 1.27 release and the dedicated Mac user Geoff "Yose" Slote, Mac users can now join in the fun.


Here are Geoff's instructions for using the mod with a Mac:

Start with Mac Quake 3 1.17 and Quake 3 Urban Terror 1.2


1. Update Mac Quake 3 to 1.27. This update will replace and add some new .paks in the baseq3 directory, plus adds a "MacQuake3Debug" to the q3 directory. Use "MacQuake3Debug" as your application.


2. Install Quake 3 Urban Terror Beta 1.27.


3. Start her up.


If your using Game Ranger [Which many of the Mac gamers use], be sure to tell Game Ranger to use "MacQuake3Debug" as your application, NOT "MacQuake3", which it previously was.

If you're a Q3A player and you've been looking longingly at the 'realistic' mods for UT, look no further. Grab the files below and frag away.

Quake 3 arena 1.27 update
Download Urban Terror 1.27 from MGF


Mac Games News for Tuesday, December 26, 2000

Mac SoundBlaster Live! Pricing Info3:00 PM
MacPlay on Mac Gaming 2K12:05 PM
Human Head on Gaming Y2K11:44 AM
New WaterRace Demo, Order Info9:51 AM
Creative Labs on 3dfx Demise9:27 AM
Epic Releases Fourth UT Bonus Pack9:24 AM
Speaker System Roundup at Gamecenter9:23 AM
 
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, December 26, 2000 on one page


Recent Mac Games News

Friday, December 22, 2000
Thursday, December 21, 2000
Wednesday, December 20, 2000
Tuesday, December 19, 2000
Monday, December 18, 2000


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