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Friday, August 26, 2005


New IMG Pro Features Introduced, Lifetime Offer
10:04 AM | IMG News | 17 comments

Today Inside Mac Games has updated IMG Pro with several new features and new subscriptions offers. IMG Pro is subscriber version of the Inside Mac Games website that allows you to turn off all advertisements, use customized themes, create your own blog, create a watch list, get a five percent discount on games through Macgamestore.com, IMG forum upgrades, and much more.

First up, we've brought back the free game offers. Subscribe to IMG Pro for one year, and get 1 free game. Subscribe for two years, and get 2 free games. We've also added a new lifetime subscription offer that doesn't expire. This option allows you to get up to four free games and costs just $64.95!

Here's the list of free games available:

Age of Mythology
James Bond 007: NightFire
MTX: Mototrax
SpyHunter
Star Trek: Elite Force II
Star Wars: Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six 3: Raven Shield
Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness
Another new addition is support for Macgamefiles.com. Simply log into your IMG Pro account on Macgamefiles.com and you'll be able to download popular game demos, patches, and other MGF hosted files straight from Macgamefiles.com! Banners ads will also be turned off.

In the coming weeks, look for more enhancements to IMG Pro including a brand new theme.

For more information on IMG Pro, follow the link below.

IMG Pro
Inside Mac Games


Custer Takes Over The Campus
9:51 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story

Our gaming-related desktop craftsperson Brad Custer has once again debuted his weekly creation; this time around his theme is The Sims 2 University, an expansion pack for The Sims 2 due to be released by Aspyr Media.

Here's what Brad had to say:

The announcement this week of The Sims 2 University expansion pack from Aspyr Media coming to the Mac has a lot of you excited. I know this because of the amount of email in my inbox wanting a desktop for this game. And by now you know how much I like to honor all of your requests especially when it's a title I'm looking forward to also. So, with the help of Aspyr Media and my trusty cable modem I was able to create this week's wallpaper.
Head over to Custer's Desktop to grab this latest offering.

IMG: Custer's Desktops



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Triple Shot Of Stubbs Previews
9:49 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Like undead shambling forth from the misty confines of an untended graveyard, previews for the upcoming Stubbs the Zombie are multiplying quickly as the game nears release. Today we have three to offer, one from Gamedaily.com, one from 1UP.com, and finally one from IGN. All the previews describe the gameplay, giving readers a taste of what it is like to control a homicidal zombie on a mission. The IGN preview also delves into the game's storyline.

From the Gamedaily preview:

It appears that the numbers game is a very important part of this title, especially since Stubbs can become overwhelmed in a hurry. Bullets never do a lot of damage, but it piles up (or whittles away, whichever you prefer) if you always have to make the uphill climb through gunfire. Therefore, it's best to bring some friends along, as in seven or eight. I'm not sure how many zombies the engine (the Halo engine, by the way) can display at one time, but even five or six is enough to divert the enemy's attention. The NPCs aren't stupid, so they won't focus on you when several other creatures attack them, which allows you to pick and choose your opponents without having to worry about clearing an entire area. Plus, if your smelly buds manage to take down an enemy NPC, that downed character will also become a zombie.
From the 1UP preview:
Your zombie allies serve a larger purpose than just helping you attack enemies, though -- they can also be used to help you get past roadblocks. In one area, we came across a bunch of landmines set in the middle of the street. In order to get past them, we had to recruit a group of zombie friends and have them run into the mines, blowing themselves up and creating a clear path for Stubbs. Later in the level, another objective required us to gather a group of allies and move them towards a giant literal roadblock in the middle of the street -- with enough of them pushing, the wall will fall over and you can move on.
From the IGN preview:
The detachable hand is great too. You just pull off your hand (hey, Zombies are cool like that), which regenerates quickly, and you hurl it at an enemy. If it falls short, the hand will skittle on all fingers toward him or her and then jump on their head. If it's a direct shot, the hand lands on the opponent, and quick transforms him into your evil puppet. The camera switches to a third-person perspective geared toward staying behind the back of the hand, which is stuck to the opponent's head. This leaves Stubbs behind in a vulnerable state, so it's best to hide or park him in a safe place far from the action when utilizing this attack. From there, you can surprise enemies by looking like an ordinary citizen. More importantly, as an evil zombie puppet masquerading as a normal human, you can get around that old zombie rule -- their inability to use weapons. Human weapons in Stubbs the Zombie range form shotguns, rifles, and rocket launchers to a host of others we haven't seen yet.
Aspyr and Wideload Games will be releasing the finished game in October. To read all the reviews click on the links below.

Gamedaily: Stubbs Preview
1UP.com: Stubbs Preview
IGN: Stubbs Preview
Aspyr Media
Wideload
Stubbs the Zombie
Buy Stubbs the Zombie


Bone: Out From Boneville Previewed
9:49 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

A recent IGN preview takes a look at Bone: Out From Boneville, TellTale Game's adventure game adaptation of Jeff Smith's comic series of the same name. The first in a planned four episode arc, Bone will closely follow the events in the comic series. Along with giving specifics about the game, the preview gives insight into Telltale's design philosophy and reveals how closely Jeff Smith has worked with the project developers.

From the preview:

One thing that Telltale really wants to nail down is that they're very interested in making games that aren't about the "normal" gaming you see today. No guns, no bare breasted ladies, just a good sense of humor and style to go along with the telling of a story. As with projects of theirs in the past, the team that has credits on games like Sam & Max, Grim Fandango, and Full Throttle continue on with traditional point and click adventure. Though the story is linear and follows the books pretty closely, there's plenty to see and do. Conversations, for one, are fully interactive. Players are allowed to push their way through the experience how they wish with dialogue from the books and some extra tidbits written for the expanded conversations in the game. On top of that, players will have the chance to participate in roundtable conversations with more than one individual. It's easy enough to switch between the characters to talk to and select one of the questions to ask.

For example, the first level of the game finds the trio of bones out in the desert after they've been kicked out of town thanks to some shady business deals that made Phoney rich. After some point and click adventure to find a clue in the environment to help the story along, Fone gets into a conversation with Phoney and Smiley that allows him to direct questions between the two for different responses. Some will get you where you want to go in order to progress while others will reward you with a smart quip or two.

The voicework provided for these verbalizations is certainly good from what we had a chance to hear. The choice of talent used to voice the characters was Jeff Smith's, so everything uttered in the game will sound as close to what's in the creator's head as possible. There's certainly a very cartoony feel to each of the voices that keeps the good mood fun, even as the trio becomes lost and alone.

As reported earlier on IMG, the developers have mentioned the possibility of a Mac version of Bone in honor of Jeff Smith's preference for Apple computers. For the entire preview head on over to the IGN site listed below.

IGN: Bone Preview
Telltale Games



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Freeverse Updates Chatalog
9:49 AM | Blake Buck | Comment on this story

Freeverse Software recently released an update to Chatalog. Chatalog is a shareware utility that allows users to catalog their iChat conversations in their favorite email client. This update brings the current version to 1.1, and includes the following changes:

Old chat archiver tool included. This will take every chat that you logged before installing chatalog and add its stuff to the library and build an mbox file to import into an email client. It will only run if Chatalog is registered.
Special characters in logs handled properly.
Added "three strikes" error handling- a failed log attempt has to fail 3 times in a row before it is reported to the user.
Chats with several people in them will no longer send duplicate emails.
Updated CSS and HTML for library pages.
New date range and average chats per day in stats.
Images and links are now correctly sorted by date, with the most recent items at the top.
Installation is simple. Running the update will automatically replace older versions.In addition, Freeverse released a Chatalog widget for use with 10.4 Tiger.

Make Chatalog even better! You'll love using the Chatalog companion Dashboard Widget . The widget allows direct access to the ChatLinks, ChatPics, and Chatgeist pages as well as Chatalog preferences. Even cooler, it diplays and links the last 3 images that have been logged. You can download the FREE widget from the Chatalog home page.
In addition to utilities, Freeverse is a popular mac game developer, and their games can be accessed via their website. To visit the website, click the links below.

Freeverse
Freeverse Website - Chatalog Update Announcement
Freeverse Website - Chatalog Homepage



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World Of Warcraft Q&A
9:49 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Computer and Video Games recently conducted an interview with World of Warcraft lead producer Shane Dabiri. The interview focuses on what the future may hold for the popular MMORPG. Although Dabiri avoids revealing anything about the rumored expansion, he does discuss plans for adding more class specific quests and the value of fan input in keeping the game vibrant.

You obviously get a huge amount of suggestions/pleas from fans focussed on game alterations. How much of this stuff do you actually take on board, and how difficult is it to strike a balance between keeping fans happy and keeping WoW the game you yourselves want it to be?

Shane Dabiri: It's not necessarily difficult. The fans are passionate about World of Warcraft because they love the game, and we appreciate that. We listen to their feedback and read their comments on the forums. We really do. Sometimes, the fans' suggestions dovetail nicely with what we are already planning for the game. Other times, their suggestions inspire us to implement some changes. But there are also times were fans will suggest something that we just can't do, either because it isn't feasible or because it would drastically alter the game beyond what we're trying to accomplish.

At the end of the day, we have to make a game that is fun for many different kinds of gamers; so we need to keep that in perspective, and oftentimes, it means we can't make the alterations that a small segment of the player base wants.

To read the entire interview follow the link below.

CVG: World of Warcraft Q&A
Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft
Buy World of Warcraft



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WoW: Soundtrack Now Available, New Battleground Info
9:49 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Have you ever danced with a Tauren in the pale moonlight? If not, then Blizzard may have the music you need to set the right mood. Yesterday the company announced the release of the World of Warcraft soundtrack. Available for purchase at their online store, the soundtrack features 30 different tracks pulled straight from the game.

Blizzard also released some new information about the upcoming battleground, Arathi Basin. Scheduled for inclusion in the next patch for the game, the battleground enlists players in a race to see whether Horde or Alliance can gather the most ore. A new rewards page lists items available only to players who have accumulated reputation points with their faction by skillful play in the new battleground.

Here are a few details about Arathi Basin:

* Both sides of up to 15 players each compete to occupy the five resource nodes spread throughout Arathi Basin.
* Each claimed node generates resources for the owning team. The more nodes your team controls, the quicker you gain natural resources. The first team that gains 2,000 resources wins.
* Both the winning and losing team earn honor after completing an Arathi Basin Battleground, as accumulated resources translate directly into bonus honor for players. Even if you don't win the Battleground, you walk away with honor.
* As players compete, they will improve their reputation with the Defilers or League of Arathor, thereby earning many new and powerful rewards.
* Arathi Basin is banded by level. The minimum level to join is 20, and different instances will spawn for players between levels 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59 and 60.
To learn more about the new soundtrack and battleground click the links below.

Arathi Basin
Arathi Basin Rewards
Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft
Buy World of Warcraft


Mac Games News for Thursday, August 25, 2005

Macgamestore: Zuma Deluxe, Bejeweled 2 In Stock11:11 AM
IMG Reviews Vendetta Online11:08 AM
New Starcraft Ghost Screenshots9:36 AM
The Widget Monkeys Release Banana Warehouse9:36 AM
Avernum 4 Revealed9:35 AM
Bubblomania X 1.2 Released9:35 AM
Bungie Talks Halo Movie9:35 AM
Fable: The Lost Chapters Love Feature9:34 AM
Apple Posts Game Building Tools Feature9:33 AM
The Escapist Examines Marathon/Halo Link9:33 AM
 
View all of the Mac games news for Thursday, August 25, 2005 on one page


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