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Wednesday, February 26, 2003

Freeverse Updates GameSmith to v3.3
9:51 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

This morning New York-based software company Freeverse officially announced a new release of their game-finding application, GameSmith. Version 3.3 of this utility sports a number of new features such as more chat preferences and easier-to-config local networking. A number of minor bugs have also been fixed in the process. Here's a clip from their release:

GameSmith is a family friendly Mach-O, Mac OS X native game matching service that features private accounts, server-side rankings, an integrated mySQL database that powers live web-based stats and more.

The new features include LAN play (Zero-Config), chat coloring, more powerful preference settings, AFK feature, many community-demanded features and numerous bug fixes.

For more information on how to update your favorite Freeverse games to use GameSmith 3.3, or to see more of what's new in this version, check out the appropriate Freeverse pages.

Updating to GameSmith 3.3
What's New in GameSmith 3.3

Click to enlarge
IMG Reviews Jazz Speaker J9906
1:06 PM | Lucian Fong | Comment on this story

Never heard of Jazz Speakers? If you're in United States, don't be surprised if you haven't. Jazz Speakers mainly produces OEM/ODM products for industry heavy weights such as TEAC, Klipsch, Sony, and Dolby Labs, and their retail products can be found in most countries outside of the U.S. The J9906 brings a total of 110 watts RMS to the table: 60 watts for the subwoofer and 10 watts for each of the five satellite speakers. Here's an excerpt from the review:

The J9906s also sound best from a moderate distance. The satellites sound hollow and dry at point blank. Placing them a few feet away does wonders and sitting back from a distance makes them even better. They aren't very loud, but they pack enough volume to fill a bedroom and smaller living rooms. I was concerned that the center channel would be a problem for gaming on my Mac since I’d be so sitting close to it. Luckily, the J9906s feature a 4.1/5.1 switch on the back of the subwoofer and by default, the DE007 doesn’t use the center channel as a stereo source.
The review also covers the DE007, an external Digital/ProLogic decoder. Read the rest of the review for more details.

IMG Review: Jazz Speaker J9906
Jazz Speakers

IMG Store: Free Game Offers Updated
12:50 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

From time to time we update the "free game" offer that comes with every subscription to the MacGames CD and IMG Pro. Today we've updated the free game offer some cool new games and bundles:

  • Fallout
  • 4x4 Evolution 2
  • Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2
  • Giants: Citizen Kabuto
  • Unreal Tournament
  • Star Trek Voyager: Elite Force and Elite Force Expansion Pack
  • Escape from Monkey Island and iPuppet Cards
  • American McGee's Alice and Cliver Barker's Undying
  • Tomb Raider: Chronicles and Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation
  • Rune and Heavy Metal: FAKK 2

    The MacGames CD is a CD-ROM subscription service featuring the best in Macintosh game demos, shareware, updates, add-ons, trailers, cheaters and much more. Get 8 issues per year (delivered about every 6 weeks) and save big bucks! For a limited time, when you subscribe to MacGames CD, you can get a full version of one of eight games; all you pay is the shipping ($5 USA, $7 Canada, $12 International). Each subscription or renewal also includes free registration of the shareware game guide Game Doctor, plus great discounts from Mac game stores and publishers.

    IMG Pro is a new subscriber version of the Inside Mac Games website that allows you to turn off all advertisements, customize the homepage to show only the items you want, and set up a custom Watch List to notify you when new articles have been posted about items you're interested in. IMG Pro also features a choice of themes, and a new QuickSearch feature that lets you find what you're looking for, faster and easier. Best of all, an IMG Pro subscription gives you access to the same discounts as MacGames CD subscribers, and includes a free, full version of a game

    If you're already a MacGames CD subscriber or IMG Pro subscriber and would like to purchase some of these games,many of these games are also available for order seperately.

    For more information, be sure to visit the IMG web store.

    Inside Mac Games

    Click to enlarge
    GameSpy Reviews Master of Orion III
    12:33 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

    Following the release of the game yesterday, GameSpy has posted a brand-spanking new review of the much-anticipated turn-based strategy game, Master of Orion III. Overall the reviewer gives it good marks despite inherent flaws such as "skimpy combat/ship graphics and bizarre diplomancy" but that it "can stil eat away hours of your life."

    Here's a clip from the review:

    The pace of the game is fairly deliberate. In fact, most games take dozens of turns before combat becomes a factor. If playing on a medium-sized map with several races, it is not uncommon for the first 60 or 70 turns to be nothing but exploration, research, and diplomacy with very little confrontation. Even if you're "lucky" enough to start right next to another race, chances are it will still take a while before things get interesting. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but 70 turns of build up is quite a lot. The good news is that once a game heats up, and the races start vying for control of contested star systems, it stays hot until the game is over; once all of the races have presented themselves and fleets are on the move, the pace of the game picks up considerably.
    Be sure to check out the rest of the review. Master of Orion III for the Macintosh has recently been declared Final Canditate and should be going Golden Master soon. We'll keep you posted on any new updates.

    Also, dont' forget that Master of Orion III is available for pre-order through the IMG Store. It's $39 for MacGames CD/IMG Pro subscribers, and $49 for all non-subscribers.

    IMG Preview: Master of Orion III
    Quicksilver Software
    Master of Orion III
    GameSpy Review: Master of Orion III
    Buy Master of Orion III

    USB Overdrive 1.4 for Mac OS 9 Now Available
    12:08 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

    Version 1.4 of the USB Overdrive universal mouse and joystick driver is now available for download. This version is for Mac OS 9.x and for the Classic environment under Mac OS X 10.2 and later.

    The new release enables mouse wheel scrolling in Classic applications under Mac OS X 10.2 and later (note that this is not a replacement for the USB Overdrive X, it has to be installed separately in the Classic environment).

    New features under Mac OS 9 include a "Use Global Settings" command, support for the Logitech MX500 and MX700 8-button mice, support for the Microsoft Sidewinder Strategic Commander, support for GyroPoint devices, and more.

    USB Overdrive

    By Design Ships Borodino
    11:54 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

    By Design, Inc has begun shipping their latest real-time war game, Borodino. This regimental level simulation of the battle of Borodino between Napoleon and the Russians is the first of By Design's Napoleonic games to ship with a Mac OS X version.

    The game has the following features:

  • Battalion level conflict, command hundreds of units!
  • Great new graphics, see hedge rows, streams, chateaux, and smoke clouds hang over the battlefield.
  • Skirmishers!
  • All the commanders down to the Division level are present.
  • Command your units as groups.  You can move hundreds of units with a click of the mouse.
  • Capture enemies flags.  Increase the pride of your troops when they carry back enemy flags from a mélee.
  • Move units in formation by simply clicking where you want them to move to.
  • Multiple units per square.
  • Play either side and even switch sides in the middle of a battle.
  • The units are fully editable.  Add or remove any unit from any battle.  Change the characteristics of any unit.
  • Elegant, effortless interface.  Lots of new interface features to help you understand your army and how to win.
  • Rich historical content.
  • Outstanding sound, hear the charge, cannons roar,  and cavalry pound past your position.

    System Requirements

  • Mac OS 7.0 or better
  • 68040 or PPC
  • 8 MB memory
  • 8 MB hard disk space
  • OS X native version
  • OSX 10.2 or better

    Borodino is available for $24.95. For more information, please visit the By Design web site.

    By Design

    Click to enlarge
    JARED: Butcher of Song Updated for OS X 10.2
    9:51 AM | Jean-Luc Dinsdale | Comment on this story

    Back when Apple released the OS X Public Beta Test, the good folks over at Freeverse Software jumped on the opportunity to make their famous software toy JARED: Butcher of Song one of the first apps to be ported to OS X. Sadly, however, when the 10.2 OS X update was released, Jared declined to grace our presence with his mellow tones.

    Luckily for us, all that has now changed.

    In a jubilant email to IMG news, Jason Whong of Freeverse Software has informed us that the long-awaited 10.2 update of JARED: Butcher of Song has been released, thanks to the blood, sweat, and tears of famed OS X porting house The Omni Group.

    My efforts in paraphrasing the good news have fallen short in adequately expressing Jason's enthusiasm, so here's the press release in full, straight from the horse's mouth:

    Migration to Mac OS X now officially way too complete.

    When Steve Jobs said at Macworld that "except for a few laggards" all the major applications were now OS X native, I think we all knew who in particular he was chastising...

    That's right, JARED: The Butcher of Song.

    Suitably spanked, the engineers at Freeverse re-doubled their efforts to create a native Mac OS X version of that essential and massive tool. Unfortunately, even with Freeverse's Cocoa-Lopez(tm) technology, the project bogged down. Swallowing their pride, the coders of Freeverse called for assistance.

    Like a gallant knight with a brave steed between his incredibly muscular and armored thighs, The Omni Group rode to the rescue! Although it taxed even their mighty resources, The Omni Group achieved the dream and JARED for Mac OS X was finally born.

    Freeverse Software is pleased to announce that, through the courtesy of
    The Omni Group, Jared for Mac OS X is now available from http://freeverse.com/toys.mgi

    No longer will one have to boot into Mac OS 9* to hear the dulcet tones of The Butcher of Song and, more importantly for Apple's stock price, no longer will JARED stand in the way of G4 tower sales!

    Right. Good news indeed. Click on the links below to get the goods.

    Freeverse Software: JARED, Butcher of Song for OS X
    Omni Group

    Westlake Bowls for Kids
    9:51 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

    Glenda Adams, programmer for Westlake Interactive and all-around nice gal, has recently posted information regarding her company's participation in an upcoming charity event. The event, run by Big Brothers Big Sisters, involves a bowling competition and will generate money via pledges placed on each participant:

    Myself, Suellen, and a few others from Westlake Interactive are participating in a charity bowling event in Austin this weekend. It benefits Big Brothers/Big Sisters, and basically a bunch of game companies in town are going to have a bowling competition and collect pledges to go to the charity.
    Westlake will be the only Mac-centric company there, but plenty of other big names will also be attending, including Ion Storm and Digital Anvil.

    Those interested in making pledges and/or donations can check out the official Bowl for Kid's Sake 2003 page online. Big Brothers Big Sisters is an organization that works to help boys and girls achieve their potential through positive adult relationships.

    Bowl for Kids 2003 - The Magnificent Five Team
    Westlake bowls for kids
    Westlake Interactive

    Mac Games News for Tuesday, February 25, 2003

    IMG Reviews Black & White: Creature Isle1:59 PM
    PlayMyth Brings Myth II to Mac OS X11:26 AM
    Interview With NDL11:23 AM
    Soldier of Fortune II 1.03 Patch Released9:30 AM
    Championship Manager 4 Demo Coming Friday8:22 AM
    Borodino Begins Shipping6:00 AM
    Feral Announces Republic, Total Immersion6:00 AM
    Frozen Bubble Available6:00 AM
    Vendetta Update6:00 AM
    View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, February 25, 2003 on one page

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    Monday, February 24, 2003
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    Search for other Mac games news stories or browse our Mac Games News Archive.

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