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Thursday, August 22, 2002



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Aspyr Announces Clone Campaigns
6:00 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

Macintosh game publisher Aspyr Media has updated their website to officially announce their newest product, Stars Wars Galactic Battlegrounds: Clone Campaigns, an expansion pack for the real-time strategy game. While the add-on was revealed as coming to the Mac back at Macworld New York, this is the first information to be posted on the company's web site. Along with the expected new units and structures, Clone Campaigns will also feature new upgrades and powerups, a larger force at your disposal (up to 250 units per player), the ability to replay old campaigns with new features and units, added goodies to the scenario editor, and more. Here is a list of included features:

Features include:
  • New units and locales from Star Wars: Episode II as well as other Star Wars films and expanded universe.
  • Increase the population limit to 250 units allowing you to field much larger armies than before.
  • Mix and match civilizations from Episode II with those from the original Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds game when playing in single player skirmish or multiplayer mode.
  • Replay the original campaigns from Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds with air cruisers, power droids, and all the new upgrades and effects from the Clone Campaigns expansion pack.
  • Featuring numerous enhancements for this release-including upgradeable shields, power cores, new effects and new units for scenario editor.
  • Clone Campaigns, is currently in the Beta stage, and is slated to be released in late September or Early October. A related news item at Westlake Interactive notes that the "programming on Clone Campains has progressed extremely well and we expect the software to hit Final Candiate in the near future."

    The Aspyr page notes the system requirements for the expansion are slightly higher than for the original. Preliminary recommendations include OS 9 or OS 10.1, 128MB RAM, and at least a Rage 128 or GeForce2 MX graphics card.

    You can order the original Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds from the IMG Store for $43. You do not have to be a member of the MacGames CD in order to take advantage of this special price.

    Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds: Clone Campaigns
    Westlake: Clone Campaigns Is Coming
    Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds
    Aspyr Media
    Buy Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds



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    IMG Reviews Birdie Shoot
    1:58 PM | IMG News | Comment on this story

    Birdie Shoot, the fast-paced shooter from Macplay's new Value Series, has hit store shelves, and IMG's very own Galen Wiley has the inside scoop, in a full featured review. Here's a sneak peak of what's inside:

    First of all, and probably my favorite feature is Birdie Shoot's "AI", referred to as "Bird Intelligence", or "BI". Basically, the Birds are very well aware of your plans to stop their invasion, and they know all your tricks. So, when you put your cross hair over their poor, defenseless bodies, they will try to avoid you by means necessary. They speed up, and they don't stop "running" (can Birds even do that?), until they're safe and off the screen. This is where hand-eye coordination really comes in handy. If you're not quick with your shots, you'll end up wasting ammo, and having to reload, missing important targets. Although this is merely a somewhat simple programming trip, that basically increases the acceleration of a bird once your cursor goes over it, I still think it's a nice feature that adds some challenge.
    Be sure to check out the full review for more information.

    IMG Review: Birdie Shoot
    MacPlay
    Birdie Shoot


    MacGames CD Volume 8 Ships
    12:39 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

    In our continuing effort to keep our loyal MacGames CD subscribers informed, we thought we'd pass this little bit of information along. Yesterday we began shipping out the eight MacGames CD to subscribers, so be on the look out for the CD soon.

    We're also working throughout the day to ship all those who ordered free games as part of the free game offer when they subscribed to the MacGames CD.

    If you haven't subscribed to the MacGames CD, there's still plenty of time to subscribe. Be sure to visit our IMG Web Store for more details on ordering a subscription and exclusive special deals just for subscribers.

    Inside Mac Games


    Interview with The Sims' Will Wright
    12:32 PM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

    Games Studies has published an interview with Will Wright, the video game designer known for mega-hit titles games such as SimCity, and of course the best-selling PC game of all time, The Sims. The interview does not cover what new Sim games are coming out, or even what Sims games have just come out. Instead, the interview focuses solely on philosophical wonderings and insights. Readers will get to really understand Wright's passion for creating "infinite possibility games".

    Here is an excerpt from the interview:

    CP: I notice that when I play, I usually donít necessarily start out with a main character. But I find that invariably one of the characters in the family becomes the main character in my mind, and they become the person that Iím concentrating the narrative around.

    Iím sure that people have different ways of doing it. I move between the characters and the houses and stuff, but I always find thereís one house, and one person that ends up being the main person that Iím wrapping things around.

    WW: Well, I think thatís the more theatrical approach, because thatís the protagonist of your story. The other characters are important, but really thatís the one that youíre empathizing with the most. Youíre really getting into their head. Iím kind of surprised that that works out so well, because when we were originally doing the game, there was a lot of debate about whether there should be one significant person in the game, or whether it should be the whole family. But we started playing the game and watching people playing, and people seemed to have no problem with jumping from character to character, and then having the ones they werenít playing just become autonomous.

    Those in need for a good psychological boost, or just want to become enlightened, can check out the full interview for more information.

    Sims, BattleBots, Cellular Automata God and Go
    Maxis



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    Lineage Employee Q&A
    8:21 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

    NCSoft, the company responsible for the popular MMORPG, now available for Mac users, Lineage: The Blood Pledge, has announced that they will be hosting a special opportunity for its fans, a user-created, Employee Q&A. Users will be able to become a part of and help compile a Question and Answer database concerning the employees at NCSoft. It is made quite clear that acceptable questions should not relate to gameplay, but rather the company itself and information about questionable employees at hand. All you need to participate is an account at the Lineage Messageboards and some questions in mind.

    Q&A Sessions will be divided into different installments, each corresponding to a different Employee. The first and current installment features Lance "CaptSturm" Stites, US Lineage Producer.

    Be sure to check out the forums in order to register an account (if you haven't already), and for information on future installments.

    Q And A With NCSoft
    Lineage Messageboards
    NCsoft
    Lineage



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    Spider-Man Updated to 1.0.2
    6:00 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

    Aspyr's action title, Spider-Man, based on the comic bearing the same name, has recently been updated to version 1.0.2. This latest update will bring any of the previous versions up to date, and includes some fixes and additions:

    • Improved audio performance on dual-processor machines under OS X.
    • Removed the command key as a valid choice in the Keyboard Configuration screen. When the command was assigned to the web action, Spider-Man would constantly fire webs.
    The patch is sized at around 1MB, and is available for download at Aspyr's site.

    MGF: Spiderman 1.0.2 Update
    Neversoft
    Aspyr Media
    Westlake Interactive
    Spider-Man



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    Links Course Converter Coming Soon?
    6:00 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

    Though gamers have reported their satisfaction with the gameplay in the recently released Links Championship Edition, several have pointed out that the lack of a course converter for older Links LS courses is something of a disappointment. In a bid for further information, an IMG reader contacted Bold about this situation, and sent us the results of his investigation:

    Just talked to the support people at Bold Games, who told me the course converter for old Links LS courses wasn't included on the CDs, but should be released on the boldgames.com web site in the next 2 weeks or so.
    This is great news for Links fans. IMG will certainly keep tabs on the situation and let readers know when we receive more information on the topic.

    Bold
    Links Championship Edition
    Buy Links Championship Edition



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    Geneforge OS X Beta Available
    6:00 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

    Following up their announcement earlier this month regarding the porting of some of their titles to OS X, Spiderweb Software has released a beta of a Carbonized version of Geneforge for the general public:

    You can now download the public beta of Geneforge, newly Carbonized to be fully compatible with Mac OS X. It will also run on Macintosh System 8.1 and up. This is beta software, so it may not function perfectly.
    Those interested in downloading the beta can find it at Spiderweb's Geneforge page. The OS X demo is sized at around 12.5 MB.

    For those unfamiliar with the title, Geneforge is an isometric RPG with an open storyline that allows players to create various creatures for use in battle as they try to determine their purpose in the world. More information can be found in IMG's review of this title.

    Spiderweb - Geneforge
    IMG - Geneforge Review
    Spiderweb Software
    Geneforge


    Mac Games News for Wednesday, August 21, 2002

    Cave Dig 3 Update Released4:02 PM
    Soldier of Fortune II Goes Gold10:36 AM
    IMG Reviews Max Payne10:18 AM
    Carmack and Doom III6:00 AM
    Civilization III Expansion Trailer6:00 AM
    Myst III: Exile DVD Officially Scrapped [Updated]6:00 AM
    Myth III Updated; v1.1 Soon6:00 AM
    Only Mortal 2.0b2 Released6:00 AM
    Tunnell Talks GarageGames Progress6:00 AM
     
    View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, August 21, 2002 on one page


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