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Thursday, November 1, 2001


Mac Myth III Multiplayer Demo After GM
8:03 AM | Noah Brimhall | Comment on this story

Myth fans who noticed that Mumbo Jumbo released a Myth III: The Wolf Age Multiplayer demo for PC users were probably left wondering when it would come to Mac. According to Myth III Executive Producer Mike Donges, we won’t have to wait too long.

There will be a Mac version of the MP demo as soon as we can GM the Mac version.
Nate Birholz, Product Coordinator at MacSoft, also posted this tidbit regarding the Mac demo of Myth III:
There will be a demo once the game is finished, which should be soon. The fine folks at MumboJumbo have been working their collective tuckus off to squash the remaining bugs.
According to a forum post by Donges last week the Mac version of Myth III should be done in two – three weeks. If this schedule holds then Mac Myth fans should have there hands on a multiplayer demo in a few weeks also.



The Myth III multiplayer includes 1 multiplayer map and supports 2 to 16 players. The map, called “Ramparts,” supports both dark and light forces and includes 7 of the 14 multiplayer modes, including the classic Steal the Bacon and series of new modes created especially for Myth III.



The IMG web store is currently taking pre-orders for Myth III: The Wolf Age for $35. Keep in mind that this (and many other special offers) are available for MacGames CD subscribers only.

Myth III Preview
IMG News: Myth III Mac in "2-3 weeks"
Myth III News Page
MacSoft


Galactica for OS X Released
4:08 PM | Noah Brimhall | Comment on this story

MonkeyByte.com today announced the release of the Mac OS X version of the space-based strategy game Galactica A.D.. The game, published by MonkeyByte.com and created by Sacred Tree Software, is available on CD or by download. They have been looking forward to releasing this title, according to Nicolas Murphy, President of MonkeyByte.com:

Galactica has always been one of our favorites. From single player to network play, this game will exercise your strategic mind. We are happy to make this game available to OS X users everywhere.
Murphy also declared MonkeyBytes.com's intention to publish more OS X titles in the future:
MBD is dedicated to supporting more OS X games into the future. We think that Galactica is the obvious first choice for us to release with Sacred Tree Software. The match of the OS X interface and the extensive gameplay of Galactica makes for one very robust game offering.
It's always good news to hear of yet another publisher's commitment to Mac OS X gaming. Welcome to the future, Monkey Byte!

MonkeyByte.com: Galactica A.D.


Freeverse Updates, WingNuts Demo Due
3:29 PM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story

Colin Lynch Smith just dropped us a note to let you know that they will soon be releasing a demo for the OpenGL-powered arcade shooter WingNuts. This game generated quite a "buzz" at MWNY this Summer, and we're sure gamers will love this combination of cutting-edge visuals and old-school (think Time Pilot) gameplay. There are also updates on two other titles in development:

Just a quick note to let you know that we'll be releasing a demo of our amazing new arcade game, WingNuts, early next week! We're printing the boxesnow and it will ship later this month. This one rocks folks.

Also, the long-awaited RPG, Atlas: The Gift of Aramai, is nearingcompletion! With luck, we'll have a demo of that available very soon as well... (and you all thought it was vaporware, ha! :-) Atlas features atruly compelling novella-like story and many hours of adventuring goodness.

Finally, we just released an update to our code-breaking game Enigma. Itscarbonized to run natively under OS X and is a terrific brain-game for kids.

Visit the Freeverse web site for more details and downloads. Watch for WingNuts, this is one addictive title!

Freeverse
Enigma
Atlas: The Gift of Aramai
WingNuts


MouseMan Dual Optical Giveaway Continues
3:24 PM | IMG News | Comment on this story

Day two of our MouseMan Dual Optical giveaway continues! If you haven't already, head on over to our contest page and enter to win one of two MouseMan Dual Optical mice. Sporting two extremely accurate sensors, this mouse was designed to make your mousing experience more enjoyable. The giveaway will last until next Wednesday and the lucky winners will be announced next Friday. For more information, read our review of Logitech's newest input device.

MouseMan Dual Optical Review
MouseMan Dual Optical Giveaway



Click to enlarge
Fly! II Recognizes Joystick in OS X
1:08 PM | IMG News | Comment on this story

Many persons gaming under Mac OS X currently share a lament that support for gamepads and joysticks has yet to be fully implemented. Programs like CarvWare's GamePad Companion have made life easier, but for the most part there's still not a lot of support.


Interestingly enough, a reader recently wrote in to Accelerate Your Mac after finding out that his copy of MacSoft's Fly! II included joystick support:

I picked up Fly! II recently, after seeing they had a beta version for OS X. The program works great, but I immediately wanted to get a joystick. After looking around a bit at the local Best Buy, I decided to drop $50 on a Microsoft Sidewinder Precision 2 (USB version, obviously!). Well, imagine my surprise when I plugged it in to OS X and Fly! saw it immediately, even identified it correctly and everything. It works great, and I would recommend it to everyone.
Perhaps other users of Fly! II have discovered that the program includes support for other controllers as well. Feel free to post in IMG's forums about any related discoveries.

MacSoft - Fly! II
Buy Fly! II
CarvWare - GamePad Companion
Accelerate Your Mac
MacSoft
Terminal Reality
Fly! II
Buy Fly! II



Click to enlarge
Spiderweb Hosts a Sale
10:14 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

Old-school RPG fans rejoice! Spiderweb Software has announced a major sale for all their major titles. During the month of November, their Avernum series, Nethergate, the Exile series, Homeland, Lost Souls, and Ocean Bound will be selling for 10% off their usual prices.


For those unfamiliar with the name, Spiderweb is an independent software maker that concentrates mainly on old-school style RPGs. Any fan of older RPGs such as the Ultima series or Legacy of the Ancients should find their works instantly familiar. Some of their work, including the Avernum series, has garnered more than a little attention from hardcore gaming sites.


Why the sudden sale? Here's their explanation:

The Seattle weather is gray, cold, and moist. This should make us happy, since it makes all of the outdoors like the basement in which we write our games. The holiday season is coming, with promises of Thanksgiving turkey and eating all of the Halloween candy we meant to give to the kids. We should be in a great mood.


But we’re not. Why? Because our sales always hit the floor in November. We have no idea why this happens. But it does, every year, like clockwork. And we need to do something to cheer ourselves up.


And what is more fun than a sale?

Most of Spiderweb's titles come with free demos as well, so feel free to try before you buy. For more information on their titles as well as the sale, be sure to check out their official site.

Spiderweb Software
Spiderweb Software
Avernum 2
Buy Avernum 2



Click to enlarge
Warcraft III - Mini Beta FAQ & New Unit
10:06 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

A mini-FAQ focusing on the upcoming beta-test for Warcraft III was posted earlier this week in the forums of Battle.net. Somewhat humorous in scope, the FAQ answers such questions as "Why did you ignore my question?" as well as more pertinent questions.


Though there is no mention of what platforms the beta-test will cover, it does mention that the beta will start sometime this winter. Sign-ups will not actually start until the beta itself is ready.


In other WC3 news, the latest new unit revealed at the official site is sure to make more than a few gamers recoil in horror. Given the gruesome name Meat Wagon, this Undead unit will be used to harvest corpses from the battlefields. Here's the official blurb:

One of the strangest and most dire tools utilized by the undead Scourge is the dreaded Meat Wagon. This rickety contraption is used to collect and store recently slain corpses from the field of battle. At any time, corpses can be pulled from the Meat Wagon and raised into undead warriors. When upgraded, the Meat Wagon can also 'fling' diseased corpses at enemy units by use of a crude catapult device. An invaluable support vehicle for the Scourge, the Meat Wagon strikes fear and woe into the hearts if even the most resolute defenders.
There's also an animated pic of the Meat Wagon available, which aptly displays just how creepy this new unit looks. Just picture a cheese grater coupled with a food processor and an old wagon and you've got a pretty good idea of what it looks like.


As far as release dates go, the final version of WC3 is still set to release sometime in early 2002, or as the mini-FAQ states, "2002 or when it is done."

Warcraft III - Meat Wagon
Battle.net Forums - Warcraft III Beta Mini-FAQ
Blizzard Entertainment
WarCraft III
Buy WarCraft III


Mac Torque Update
10:05 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story

There's a new update on the GarageGames web site regarding the Mac conversion of the Torque engine. Torque is the stripped down version of the Tribes 2 engine which is available for programmers to license for the very low cost of $100. Here's the update:

The Mac platform source code is now part of the Torque Engine SDK CVS repository. This is not the Torque Mac SDK release. The Mac source is only entering beta, and is only available on the head (unstable) revision of the CVS. A number of Mac developers will be testing the code over the next few weeks. Once the source is stable we'll have our first official release. Please do not post any questions regarding the Mac source, it won't be supported until it's released.
Having a Mac branch of the code ensures any of the games released under the Torque license will be easy to recompile and run on the Mac.


In a recent update, Mac programmer David Chait said that there's a possibility the Torque engine will be shown at Macworld San Francisco in January. We also received more clarification from Chait on the status of the Mac Torque sound (which uses OpenAL in the PC branch) and input functionality:

Sound is a bit problematic -- the 1.0 AL release for the Mac is missing
functionality, and no X release as yet, though Creative has been talking
about an update -- but I am looking at make-my-own solutions in the near
term to try and get it up and running on both. Input seems pretty good on
9, but we still have some issues to resolve in both the CFM and MachO apps on X (full-screen mode especially has issues). I'm sure in the next week or two we'll shake out most of the issues.
Stay tuned to IMG for the latest on Torque and any games that may spawn from it.

GarageGames Mac Torque Update


Heroes 4 Interview
9:27 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Fan site Heroes4.org has conducted an interview with Kate Hedstrom, PR Manager at 3DO, about the upcoming Heroes of Might and Magic 4, now due in the first quarter of 2002. HOMM4 is a turn-based strategy game that uses the long-running Might and Magic universe as its backdrop. New features include actual deployment of heroes in battle and an isometric view.


The short interview mainly covers the changes in the game over previous versions as well as what has or has not survived. The brief interview also happens to ask if HOMM4 will be available on any other platforms (i.e. Mac):

Kirsten: Will there be any non-Windows versions of the game? (like Macintosh or Linux)


Kate: At this time there hasn't been any anouncement of porting Heroes IV to other platforms, but you never know.

Although there's no confirmation that a Mac version will be done, there's good indication that it will eventually be coming to the Mac. Keep your swords crossed!

Heroes of Might & Magic News
Heroes 4 Interview



Click to enlarge
Halo Preview at Gamespot
8:53 AM | Sean Carton | Comment on this story

While most of us mere mortals have been licking our chops waiting for the release of Halo, those lucky dogs over at Gamespot have been running the game through its paces on the X Box. While Halo is slated for release on the XBox platform in a mere two weeks, Bungie is still tight-lipped about when a Mac version will be available, though they have stated that one is in the works.

In true teaser form, Gamespot's preview doesn't reveal much, but it does provide some tantalizing glimpses at the weapons, enemies, and vehicles available in this huge shooter.

First, the weapons. While most FPS games allow you to carry enough armament to make Arnold Schwartzenegger's knees buckle, Halo seems to take a more "realistic" approach, limiting players to two weapons at a time:

Ever felt as if the number of weapons you could carry in a particular first-person shooter was unrealistic? In Halo, you can only carry two at a time, and that causes you to choose carefully. Luckily, you can pick up weapons from fallen enemies and comrades, but in doing so, it's important to know which are best.
But what weapons they are! Gamespot doesn't tell us about all of them, what they do talk about sounds pretty cool: a 60-cartridge Assault Rifle, a Plasma Pistol whose shots gain power the longer you hold down the trigger, a rapid-fire Plasma Rifle (which they claim "you'll go searching through piles of bodies for"), and a Needler which fires explosive glass shards. The only dud seems to be M6D Pistol, "voted the weapon most likely to be discarded."

As for enemies, Halo seems to boast a fairly assortment of aliens, at least one of which speaks English:

The grunts are noteworthy for two reasons. The first reason is that they're the only species among the Covenant that speaks English. You'll hear them squeal, "There he is!" when one spots you, or "They're everywhere!" if you approach with a group of marines in tow. We've noticed about six different phrases so far, but there could be more. The second noteworthy fact about them is that they often toss plasma grenades, which you need to avoid at all costs. It is particularly humiliating when one of the grunts attaches one to your visor, because the only method of removal...hurts. If you can shoot these creatures before they throw any plasma grenades, you'll be able to stock up on this extremely valuable weapon by snagging their supply. Grunts tend to carry either the plasma pistol or the needler.
After the Grunts come the power-shielded Covenant Elite (tough to kill with conventional weapons) and the fast harrying Jackals.

Unfortunately, Gamespot's preview doesn't reveal much about one of the most revolutionary aspects of the game: the various vehicles scattered throughout the world of Halo. There is a bit about the Warthog, a tough dune-buggy-like vehicle that can be used singly (with a computer-controlled gunner) or in multiplayer mode (with players acting as both driver and gunner):

If you're playing Halo's single-player mode, you'll be driving this attack buggy, while computer-controlled buddies man the gun turret or ride shotgun, picking off enemies from the passenger seat. Lose a buddy to enemy forces? If you drive up next to another marine, he'll jump into the open slot.
If you're playing Halo's multiplayer mode with a group of friends, you'll be able to select the driver's seat, passenger's seat, or gun turret while teammates man the other positions. In this mode, you participate in joust-style matches against your other friends.
Unfortunately that's all the skinny available now. But Gamespot promises to reveal more tomorrow in their 3-part Halo Preview.


Halo Media Madness
Voodoo Extreme Goes Ga-Ga Over Halo
Halo Preview at Gamespot
Microsoft
Bungie Studios
Halo: Combat Evolved


Galactic Core Review
8:41 AM | Sean Carton | Comment on this story

Fans of space-based strategy games will want to check out MacGamers' review of Galactic Core, a new turn-based game from Spiderweb Software. Known for their long line of Avernum RPG epics, Spiderweb has a long history of cranking out quality software (at shareware prices!).


For those of you hooked on this genre, you'll find a lot of familiar stuff to keep you glued to your screen for hours. Like the venerable SpacewardHo! and Master of Orion series of games, Galactic Core's gameplay centers around maintaining the planets in your empire, building armadas of spacecraft, and building your empire through conquest...and who doesn't enjoy crushing an alien empire or two?


But if you're thinking about dismissing Galactic Core as a simple shareware game, think again...MacGamer's review reveals some big-game details that make Galactic Core a huge value:

...as with most Spiderweb-published titles, the developer at Chromite went all out and furnished Galactic Core with some extra features normally reserved for commercial games. For those of you who need your multiplayer fix, Galactic Core provides support for a play-by-email game, similar to several chess programs. For the creator in you, an easy to use in-game campaign builder lets you design your own galaxies for customized mayhem. Finally, the game provides a commercial-quality interface - the user interface is very polished, the graphics are fairly simple but solid, and the various musical tracks definitely add to the overall game experience.
For $15 bucks, it's tough to beat. Pop on over to Macgamefiles.com and check it out.

MacGamer's Galactic Core Review
Galactic Core Final, Demo Released Soon
Spiderweb Software
Galactic Core at Macgamefiles.com


Fahrenheit Coming to Mac, PC
8:26 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

VoodooExtreme received word that the French-based Quantic Dream is planning to release their next title, Fahrenheit for both the Mac and PC. The adventure game is described as "the first 3D real-time television series," with new episodes being released once a month. The images posted on the official Fahrenheit site look very impressive so far, and the description of its gameplay is intriguing:

Play the role of the hunter and the fugitive in this fantastic interactive adventure where you will have to speak, explore, interact, fight and face up to dark forces. Fahrenheit uses the latest 3D real-time technologies to enable you to become the different protagonists in the adventure and cause the story to unfold.
More details on the ICE 3D engine being used to make the game have also just been posted. Here's a clip explaining how Quantic is able to use the lighting and shadows to enhance the moody effects:
ICE 3D uses a special system for lighting up characters which integrates, among other things, specular lights and self-shadowing. Specular lights enable us to make a character's skin react in a particularly realistic way by reflecting light. This technology also enables us to have a face half lit up and half in shadow. The lighting system used by ICE 3D creates hyper-realistic and detailed shadows (we can distinguish a character's fingers in his shadow). These shadows stretch and bend naturally in relation to the light and the set (volume shadows). The other great feature of ICE 3D is that it enables us to have self-shadowing i.e. not only do characters project real-time shadows in the set but also on themselves. This enables us, for example, to have the shadow of an arm on a character's torso or the sidepieces of glasses shadowed on the face.
We will certainly keep an eye on this interesting adventure title and report back any new changes on its status. Fahrenheit is set for release early next year for Mac and PC, though no details about a pricing plan have yet been given.

Quantic Dream Web Site
Fahrenheit Post at VoodooExtreme
Fahrenheit Web Site


Mac Games News for Wednesday, October 31, 2001

IMG Reviews MouseMan Dual Optical, Giveaway12:58 PM
Giants Multiplayer Patch Soon10:25 AM
Three Stooges Remastered for the Mac9:44 AM
New Undead Units & Abilities For Warcraft III9:42 AM
Age of Empires II Ships!9:19 AM
Myth III preview at GameSpy.com8:56 AM
Porting Details for The Sims Online8:54 AM
New Shadowbane Screenshots8:51 AM
 
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, October 31, 2001 on one page


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Tuesday, October 30, 2001
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