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Monday, February 18, 2002

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Mac Civilization III Patch Changes
6:00 AM | David Finley | Comment on this story

A recent thread on the newsgroup discusses the upcoming Mac patch to the popular turn-based strategy game, Civilization III. Brad Oliver of Westlake Interactive responded to gamer Chris Riker with a list of Mac-specific fixes that will appear in version 1.17f:

  • Faster operations including map scrolling and Quartz text rendering.
  • Saving preferences is much more reliable.
  • More consistent playing of sounds and music.
  • Native support for multiple mouse buttons and mouse wheels under OS X.
  • In addition to the command key, the option key will now also bring up the startup configuration dialog.
  • Reduced the memory footprint by roughly 3 megs.
  • Additional resolution options.
  • Elimination of visual glitches under OS X.
  • Pause and hide functions will use less CPU time.
  • Some UI actions respond more quickly.
  • Apple menu no longer appends items twice under the classic Mac OS.
  • Pressing F7, F8 or F9 won't require you to click the "X" multiple times to dismiss an advisor window.
  • Screenshot code works more reliably with more than one screenshot.
  • No more crashes during diplomacy or when converting citizens to specialists.

For those who can't wait for the patch, Oliver also offered an immediate solution for the preferences bug:

As for the preferences not sticking, there's a workaround fix in the interim. Open up the Civ3 Preferences file with ResEdit or Resorcerer and it'll prompt you about missing a resource fork. Create a resource fork then save the file. From then on, the prefs will stick. The patch will of course take care of this automatically.
For further gameplay improvement tips, click on the newsgroup link below.

IMG Review: Civilization III
Civilization III
Usenet: Civ III PC patch released - mac patch soon?
Buy Civilization III

New Mac Hall on IMG
12:28 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

The kids from Mac Hall are back with another fantastic comic. How do the kids evaluate all their games? Why, through a complex system of graphs and measurements that compare them to Marathon Infinity, of course.

Here's the blurb from Mac Hall that explains the comic:

Red Faction's Geo-Mod engine and its deformable landscapes are an exciting feature, and we give Volition their fully deserved props for that. But as the strip implies — and if you've played it you already know what I'm talking about — there is one facet of the game that really stands out in the gamer's mind. I'm referring to the antics your victims perform when you stick a /certain something/ to them. I tell you, I could watch those little bastards run around all day.

And I'm sure I'm not the only one out there who rates games by comparing them to the Old Masters, though the chart system might be a bit much. The more discerning gamer could substitute Marathon Red for Infinity with the addition of a "Mauled by Raptors" line on the graph.

Be sure to check out the latest Mac Hall comic by clicking on the link below.

Mac Hall: Things That Hoot
IMG Review: Red Faction
Marathon Infinity
Red Faction

WWDC Registration Begins Next Week
9:26 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

For developers around the world, it's almost time once again to begin the annual planning process for Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), held this year from May 6 - 10, 2002 at the Convention Center in San Jose, California.

Apple kicks off WWDC pre-registration a week from today, on February 25, and will offer some very cool pre-registration incentive packages. For starters, those registering before April 15, 2002 pay $1,295 for the conference, a savings of $300 off the normal price of $1,595.

Additionally, Apple will offer a special WWDC 2002 Getting Started bundle until April 15, 2002. Aimed at developers new to the Macintosh platform, the Getting Started bundle includes attendance at WWDC 2002, a full-year Apple Developer Connection Select membership, a discount on one Apple Macintosh system (including one CPU and one monitor), and more. And this goodie-packed bundle comes in at only $1,695.

Be sure to watch this site for regular WWDC 2002 updates, and remember, registration begins on February 25. And if you're interested in the Getting Started bundle, be sure to check out all the benefits Apple includes in its ADC Select membership.

Apple Developer Connection Select Program

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Call for Lineage Stories
6:00 AM | David Finley | Comment on this story

In celebration of the vast community that has developed around Lineage: The Blood Pledge, NCsoft is inviting gamers to write and submit stories based on the massively multiplayer online role-playing game:

We are calling forth to all citizens of Lineage, to share their stories of adventure and travel throughout Aden! Once per week, we will post a topic for the stories. Players will be able to submit stories focused on this topic and based upon their in-game adventures. One story will be selected from the week's submissions, and posted on our web site. Only a story based upon the general topic will be posted for that week. This week's topic is Dragon Valley.
For more information on story submission policies, check out the Lineage News link below. Mac gamers who wish to join the excitement should download the beta version, currently available only for Mac OS X, available on the Lineage Macintosh site linked below.

IMG Preview: Lineage: The Blood Pledge
Lineage News
Lineage Macintosh

Contraband Posts Abducted Shots, Adds 'Madonna'
6:00 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

Contraband Entertainment posted some new information to their web site recently, including the first available screen shots of Abducted. The title is one of the company's original games in development now, and it seems to be making good progress.

Familiar faces Joe Riedel and Richard Cowgill are on the job making this action game with elements from the horror/suspense genre. Here's a clip from the page with details about Abducted's gameplay:

The story takes place on a huge alien spacecraft. Abducted is a science fiction, horror, survival game, not your standard shoot to kill first person shooter. As such, the gameplay consists of action, puzzles, interactive cinematics. Use of dramatic lighting and effects will draw the player into a wonderfully immersive and fun gaming experience.
For more information, check out the Abducted page and be sure to have a look at the three screen shots up now. While the game is a few months into development, there is no word on a release date yet.

In related news, the Contraband projects list has grown even longer over the weekend. A new Mac title with the code name "Madonna" has been added with a status of Early Development. If you have any guesses as to what it might be, speak out in the IMG Forums.

Contraband Entertainment
Contraband Entertainment: Abducted

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Marius net Welcomes Refugees
6:00 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

As announced last week, late Friday night marked the end of the service for players of Myth II: Soulblighter. For those who still enjoy the online portion of this game, the short list of alternatives consists of GameRanger and marius net at this point.

Marius admin Conner made a post to their forums to give those new to the system a rundown of their expectations. While the most requested feature is likely ranked games (which even abandoned), Conner addresses this issue head-on:

No rank. Well, I guess that isn't much different than currently. There is, however, game tracking for TFL and soon SB. What game tracking is all games in Tourney rooms are "tracked" — meaning the data is collected and available in detail form at and in summary form at I know some of you feel strongly about ranked — but the same reasons pulled ranked are the reasons we don't want to implement it. I suggest you look over the summary report — it really is a better implementation of "ranked" in my opinion, you just don't get that little icon is the main difference.
Anyone wanting to play either of the first two Myth games should definitely give the marius net web site a close look. The front page cautions those wanting to use marius net to follow the installation instructions carefully.

Myth II: Soulblighter
marius net
marius net: People new to marius net - please read

Mac Games News for Friday, February 15, 2002

New Carbon Build of Aleph One for OS X2:52 PM
IMG Interviews Lineage's Jake Song1:17 PM
MonkeyByte Redesigned12:56 PM
Workaround for Black & White Installer Bug (Updated)12:30 PM
MacGames CD #5 Ships12:20 PM
SEC Opens New Investigation of nVidia11:52 AM
Aspyr Ships 4x4 Evolution 29:52 AM
MacGamer on Selling Diablo II9:19 AM
Birdie Shoot Imminent; e.p.i.c. Interviewed6:00 AM
Clan Lord v221 Released6:00 AM
eQuake Fragged6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Friday, February 15, 2002 on one page

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