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Wednesday, August 21, 2002

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Soldier of Fortune II Goes Gold
10:36 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

MacPlay's Henry Price had the pleasure of announcing this morning that Soldier of Fortune II: Double Helix has gone gold for the Mac. This intense action shooter is based on the powerful Quake III: Arena engine and features strategic gameplay as players take on the role of counterterrorist agent John Mullins. The multiplayer has also been hailed as an addictive team-based experience, largely due to the random map generator included with the game. Here's more from the PR:

Soldier of Fortune II: Double Helix also advances the genre with the introduction of a new random mission generator technology for both single and multiplayer. By entering variables into the game’s random mission generator players can create millions of single or multiplayer maps on the fly for endless replayability. In addition to the RMG maps, multiplayer in Soldier of Fortune II: Double Helix offers nine professionally designed maps, more than 100 unique model/skin combinations and four different game modes including and deathmatch, team deathmatch, elimination and infiltration.
Soldier of Fortune II was ported for OS X by the Omni Group in just eight weeks, and VP Tim Wood gives a nice overview of the title:
Soldier of Fortune II offers a compelling single player campaign with amazing model animation, opponent AI and many interesting and original levels.  These blend to provide a captivating experience that will keep gamers on the edge of their seat.  The multiplayer game types range from fast and furious to strategic and team oriented.  Whatever your preferred style of play, you'll find a game type that suits you.
Be on the lookout for Soldier of Fortune II to be hitting stores very soon. Also be sure to get your pre-order of the game in now at the IMG store if you haven't already done so.

IMG First Look: Soldier of Fortune II: Double Helix
Raven Software
Buy SoF II

Cave Dig 3 Update Released
4:02 PM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

Cave Dig 3, the challenging arcade/puzzle game from the folks at Foxchange Software, has been updated to v1.1. This new version features not only your usual tweaks and fixes, but also a completely OS X native version, allowing users of Apple's newest OS to enjoy the game as well. And now, the official press release:

Cave Dig 3 v1.1, an update to the original Cave Dig 3, has been released! What's new? How about a Mac OS X native version of Cave Dig 3, bundled with Cave Dig 3 v1.1. In addition to the Mac OS X native version, a couple tweaks have been made in the classic version as well.

Cave Dig 3 is a wonderful, challenging arcade/puzzle game with beautiful graphics, a great soundtrack, and simple, yet entertaining game play. Cave Dig 3 features fifty completely different levels and two bosses, soundtracks of six high quality music themes, more than twenty-seven stereo sound effects, detailed and colorful environments, fully animated characters, cinematic introduction and ending. Also included are a few good cheats to help the player. Unregistered players can play the first ten caves; to play all fifty caves in the game, they will need to register for $15.00 US.

Cave Dig 3 v1.1 can be located at:

Foxchange Software is a small Macintosh-only shareware game developer. In business for over 5 years. It's been great and lots of fun, and will continue to be a long time to come.

You can download the free demo of Cave Dig 3 from A link has been provided at the bottom of this article.

MGF: Cave Dig 3 v1.1

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IMG Reviews Max Payne
10:18 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

Max Payne, the immensely popular third person shooter from MacSoft, long available to PC, PS2, and Xbox owners, has finally arrived on the Mac, and IMG's own Patrick Leyden has the inside scoop in IMG's review of the game.

Here is a sneak peak of what's inside:

With a plotline steeped in crime and conspiracy and game play that does not pull any punches, Max Payne is a game demands a graphical look that is raw yet sophisticated. Thankfully, the 3D world of this game lives up to the rest of the title’s stellar attributes. A large portion of this game is set in the seedy, crime-ridden tenements and alleyways of New York City. The level designers in Max Payne have faithfully recreated the ‘bad part of town’ that has been the backdrop for any number of television and feature film crime dramas over the years. When the action moves off the streets and into the areas where the ‘beautiful people’ live, this game does not miss a beat. The game consistently delivers a look that is consistent across all levels while permitting each map to be unique.
Be sure to check out the full review for the whole story. Also, if you are interested in purchasing Max Payne, you can order it right off of IMG's Store. Subscribers to the MacGames CD can pay a special, "members-only" price of $35, while non-members can pick it up for $42.

IMG Review: Max Payne
Max Payne
Buy Max Payne

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Only Mortal 2.0b2 Released
6:00 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

Only Mortal 2 (Preview Release), the popular gaming server browser for many first person shooter games (such as Return to Castle Wolfenstein, Unreal Tournament, and the Quake series ), has been updated to version 2.0b2. This new version features the following changes (information courtesy of VersionTracker):

What's new in this version:

• New user interface and icons
• Quake
• QuakeWorld
• Unreal Tournament

There are more games to come but we have to wait for the release of some of them (SoF2 for instance). The update feature is incomplete, as is the favorites so they're not recommended for use.

You can download Only Mortal 2.0b2 off of MacGamesFiles. A link has been provided at the bottom of this article.

MGF: Only Mortal 2.0b2
Only Mortal
Only Mortal 2.0

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Myst III: Exile DVD Officially Scrapped [Updated]
6:00 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

Myst fans will likely remember the original plans for the third in the series, Myst III: Exile to be re-released on DVD format at some point after the original game. While the project was rumored to be still in the works as of early this year, a helpful reader wrote in with the official word from UbiSoft that the project has been cancelled.

This is unlikely a surprise for too many gamers still hooked on Myst, but it's good to hear their FAQ which notes the DVD version is simply out of date, according to Ubi's Sam Copur:

I apologize for the out-dated faq. As of now, there are no official plans to release a DVD version of Myst 3: Exile.
Those still interested in Exile may want to check out the recent Myst: Triology which has Mac versions of both Exile and the second in the series, Riven (though note the original Myst included with Triology is PC-only).

[Update]: Exile programmer Roland Gustafsson wrote in saying there is no technical hurdle to making Myst III on a DVD. In fact, the Xbox and Playstation 2 versions are DVDs:

The Mac/PC version of Myst 3 that shipped is DVD-ready. If the files from the 4 CDs are placed on a DVD in just the right places, it will work with the current app. ie: not producing a Mac/PC DVD version is purely a marketing decision. There aren't that many Mac/PC games that have shipped on DVD, from what I can remember. (I can only remember Riven and Journeyman Project 3)
So if any Exile owners with SuperDrives want to stop loading in multiple CDs, they could feasibly burn their CDs onto a DVD. At this point though, it looks like UbiSoft won't be doing any official DVD repackaging of the game.

Presto Studios
Myst III: Exile
Buy Myst III: Exile

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Tunnell Talks GarageGames Progress
6:00 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

GameSpy caught up with GarageGames' president Jeff Tunnell recently, talking about the current status of the company after one year of licensing their powerful Torque 3D engine. The discussion revolves around the GarageGames community of developers, the improvements made over the last year, and which of the stand-out projects Tunnell sees.

In case you haven't heard, Torque is a revised version of the Tribes 2 engine which GarageGames licenses to any developer for only $100 (compared with hundreds of thousands of dollars for engines like Quake 3 or Unreal Tournament). The only catch is that game makers must license their titles through GarageGames, thus sharing some of the revenue. They've added many things to the code in their first year, including Mac compatibility so any developer can simultaneously release their games for OS 9 or OS X. Here's more from the interview:

GameSpy: What is the Torque engine capable of doing now that it wasn't capable of doing a year ago?
Jeff Tunnell: Probably the biggest visible addition has been Tim's great vehicle physics. They are good enough that we have decided to release our own GG created commercial game based on the technology. In addition, the code has been ported to the Mac and Linux platforms. A huge win has been the continual upgrade, clean up, documentation, and community support for the engine which has made it much more accessible and usable.
Check out the rest of the Q&A for more information on GarageGames. Also stay tuned to IMG for word on Torque-based titles being released in the future.

GameSpy GarageGames Interview with Jeff Tunnell

Civilization III Expansion Trailer
6:00 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

Infogrames' German web site for the upcoming Civilization III: Play the World expansion pack has made the official trailer for the title available for download. The video is in Windows Media format and requires the player for either OS 9 or OS X in order to be viewable. The trailer focuses on the new multiplayer aspects of the expansion pack like the new civilizations and gametypes (such as capture the flag, elimination, and play-by-email).

While there has yet been no official announcement of a Mac version of Play the World from MacSoft, the success of the original Civilization III would hopefully indicate the game will be ported soon after the PC version. We'll keep you posted on any new information which becomes available about a possible Mac version of the add-on.

Civilization III: Play the World German Site
Download Civilization III: Play the World Trailer (1.9MB)
Firaxis Games
Civilization III
Buy Civilization III

Carmack and Doom III
6:00 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

As the last of the QuakeCon reports are posted from the recent Texas event, some interesting things have come to light about id Software, programming guru John Carmack, and their next-gen shooter Doom III. Two of the big features of this year's QuakeCon was a talk and Q&A session with Carmack as well as a longer version of the Doom III demonstration from E3.

GameSpy was nice enough to transcribe many of the questions asked of Carmack. While many of them revolve around technical features of the engine, a number also talk gameplay issues such as the length of the singleplayer mode, the amount of time before it's done, and the controversial issue not to include a fleshed-out multiplayer mode:

Attendee: What kind of multiplayer can we expect?

Carmack: The multiplayer situation is that we are... synchronous on there. It's kind of like the original Doom where you have a game together... there's not late entry. That's largely caused by the fact that... to make the single-player game work really nicely, it sure can be neat to not have to worry about extrapolation, and making everything parametric, and shuffling everything across there. We are concentrating on being a good single player game. The multiplayer is probably going to be four-player small stuff. One-on-one or two-on-two type situations. We do expect, once we're done, that there will be a significant expansion or new product based on the Doom technology, that will have a much stronger focus on the multiplayer. But the level that's going to be in here is going to be very minimal.

For much more, check out the rest of the Q&A transcription.

An article at PC.IGN wraps up the demo, talking with id's Tim Willits and Fred Nilsson as well. It notes the demo was run on ATI's newest Radeon 9700 card with great results, though it will be able to play on lesser hardware. The new engine will do more than just push more pixels through, though. The article quotes Willits as explaining how the new graphics will work to smooth gameplay as well:

"All of the models and characters and everything goes through the same graphical pipeline," Tim explains further, "so in the past players knew that that thing was going to move or this thing was going to break. Now with the consistency and the unified engine of the DOOM III technology, we're able to create animated pieces so players have no clue what's going to jump out at them at any time which it should heighten the suspense."
Read through the rest of the piece for more on the Doom III demo. The game's technology is mostly complete, with the team now focusing on producing content and gameplay.

GameSpy Q&A with John Carmack
PC.IGN Doom III Demo Info
id Software
Buy DOOM 3

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Myth III Updated; v1.1 Soon
6:00 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

The folks at PlayMyth recently noted the Mac version of Myth III: The Wolf Age has been updated. Build 159 fixes some Mac-only bugs with the game, though the team will now prepare to move forward with a full 1.1 patch to address multiplayer problems and gameplay balancing issues. Here's more about the new patch from its listing at MythMaps:

This is an update to the Macintosh Myth 3 program only. It is not (yet) available for the PC. It fixes some minor bugs including the application switching crash and several other minor bugs. Download it, unstuff it, and use the application executable in place of the one installed on their hard drive. No major changes are done to this - but it is the last functional build before the M3 team stopped working.
The download weighs in at only 1.44MB, so be sure to grab it if you're interested. Also stay tuned at PlayMyth works to improve the multiplayer of the game with a larger update down the road.
Download Myth III Build 159 from MythMaps

Mac Games News for Tuesday, August 20, 2002

USB Overdrive Beta 5 Released12:00 PM
Mac Games to be Represented at Paris Expo9:52 AM
BetaLock to Stop Game Leaks6:00 AM
BongoBoogie Demo Soon6:00 AM
New Mac Vampire Club Announced6:00 AM
Punkbuster Q&A6:00 AM
Radeon 9700 PC Reviews Posted6:00 AM
WWIIOnline Development Plans6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, August 20, 2002 on one page

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