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Wednesday, September 28, 2005



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Mac America's Army Skips to v2.5
7:55 AM | Andy Largent | 9 comments

Even though version 2.4 of the OS X America's Army client was in testing, the word now from the official game forums is that the next Mac release won't be until version 2.5 of this free title. While it's not clear why the delay occurred in the first place, it's good news to hear that development has not been scrapped completely.

Here's the word from forum moderator "Ack:"

I can confirm that 2.4 for Mac has been skipped and the next version for Mac will be 2.5.
Stay tuned to IMG for any news on the next version of America's Army. If you're curious, you can also download the latest version of the game from Macgamefiles.

Download America's Army 2.3
America's Army Forum Post on Mac 2.4 Client
IMG News: America's Army 2.4 in Beta
U.S Army
Epic Games
America's Army: Special Forces 2.4


Macgamestore: Myst V: End of Ages Shipping
1:07 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Macgamestore.com has begun shipping the Mac version of Myst V: End of Ages Limited Edition. This Mac-branded version of the Collector's Edition will be the ONLY Mac version of Myst V available and will be available in limited quantities.

Beautifully designed and packed with bonus content, the Limited Edition offers Myst fans a memorable gift to mark the end of the series:

A 22-minute video, made by GameTap, offers a retrospective look at the making of the entire franchise.
The original game soundtrack transports fans to the ambient worlds of Myst whenever and wherever they like.
A collector's art piece provides a frame-able keepsake from the worlds of Myst.
The official strategy guide helps new and old explorers progress through this final adventure.

Myst V: End of Ages Limited Addition is available for order for $59.95 from Macgamestore.com.

Cyan
Myst V: End of Ages
Buy Myst V: End of Ages


New Hot Deals From Apple
11:48 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

MacZone has fantastic prices on essential Mac products, including Adobe Creative Suite with $50 art.com Gift Card, Sony Stylepro SDM-204 20.1" Digital/Analog LCD Display, Epson Stylus R320 Color Inkjet Printer, Intuit Quicken 2006 Basic with $20 mail-in rebate, LaCie 160GB Mini External FireWire Hard Drive, and much more.

Small Dog Electronics has great prices on top quality Mac products, including LaCie 8GB Carte Orange USB Key Drive, SDI iHome Clock Radio for iPod, Creative Labs I-Trigue L3200 2.1 3-piece Speaker System, IRIS IRISpen Executive Pen Scanner, Rain Design i360 iMac Turntable for iMac G5, QuickerTek Plug and Play 27db Transceiver for Apple AirPort Base Station, and much more.

Ramjet has super low prices on RAM upgrades for your Mac, including 2GB DDR Kit for Power Mac G5 for only $275, 1GB DDR Kit for Power Mac G4 for only $119, 512MB PC-2700 for Aluminum PowerBook G4 for only $65, 1GB Module for Aluminum PowerBook G4 for only $189, 1GB DDR DIMM for Mac mini for only $139, 1GB DDR DIMM for iMac G4 for only $135, and much more.




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The Sid Meier Legacy
7:55 AM | Anthony Wang | 1 comment

Gamespot has compiled an extensive overview of Sid Meier and his creations. From the hallowed beginnings of his first game which was Solo Flight to Railroad Tycoon and the classic Civilization games, the article revistis each title the legendary gamer developed. Besides that, Sid Meier gives his take on the current state of the gaming industry.

The Sid Meier philosophy has always been to keep the pace of the game moving, and to keep it fun. Throughout his career, Sid has managed, much in the same manner as a good film director or novelist, to cut to the essence of whatever secret he's letting us in on. As a result, every Sid Meier game is worthwhile, even to those only marginally interested in the subject matter. At a time in his career when most designers would be happy to retire, legacy intact, Sid continues to look for new challenges...
On a related note, Civilization IV is in the pipeline and hopefully it will conquer the Macintosh platform in the near future. Please follow the link below to read the entire article and to learn more information.

The Sid Meier Legacy
Buy Civilization III



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X3: Reunion Developments
7:55 AM | Anthony Wang | Comment on this story

X3: Reunion the sequel to the innovative space game, X2: The Threat has prompted three gaming websites to post their own developments on the EgoSoft's upcoming game. The first, a developer diary from Gamespot discusses last minute touchups and beta testing. Next, IGN got their hands on an early preview release of X3: Reunion and examined the game's components. The last, but not the least, GameSpy has posted a Q&A with Greg Klingston explores new additions to the game and expansion into the console arena.

Here's a clip from the Gamespot Developer Diary:

GK: Good communication is vital at this stage, where the publisher deadline for the gold master suddenly becomes more real and seems to get a lot closer every day. X3 has to be such a complex game to make it so open-ended for the player. There are seemingly an infinite number of possibilities or scenarios that the player can create, and they all need to be tested. This includes basic tasks, such as ensuring a certain ship can dock at a certain station. Now multiply the number of ships by the number of stations, and the task is increased. Now add in the fact that there are several different races owning the ships and stations, and the task multiplies again. Some ships may be able to trade the goods in those factories, while others may not. The possibilities increase again!
Originally developed by EgoSoft, X2: The Threat was ported to the Macintosh by Virtual Programming. Since its release, the game has been patched and a demo has been released. Please follow the links below to read the articles and to learn more information.

Gamespot: Developer Diary
IGN: Preview
GameSpy: Interview
EgoSoft
Virtual Programming
X2 - The Threat
Buy X2 - The Threat



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Wolfire Software's Phoenix Engine
7:55 AM | Anthony Wang | 3 comments

Over the past few months Wolfire Software has been working hard on Lugaru 2 by developing their own graphics engine dubbed Phoenix. Through daily updates by David of Wolfire Software, the new graphic engine already sports shaders, lighting, reflections and many more innovations. In addition, the previews in David's updates showcases possible terrain, character models, and weapons for Lugaru 2.

No word yet on a possible release date for Lugaru 2. However, with Phoenix, expect the Lugaru sequel to be a step up in graphics, physics, and gameplay from the original.

Wolfire Software
Lugaru
Wolfire Forums: Phoenix Engine
Buy Lugaru



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Softpedia Reviews El Ballo
7:55 AM | Blake Buck | 2 comments

Softpedia recently posted a review of Ambrosia Software's latest game, El Ballo. Developed by Pro Ratta Factor, El Ballo is a quirky old-school platform game with bizarre humor and some mature themes. From the Softpedia review:

What is missing from your life? Someone to hold and love? Steady pay? Respect from your friends? Bah, superficial stuff. What you really miss is the old-school 2D platform gaming of yesterday. Let's face it, returning to the old classics is always more fun than you expected. The Adventures of El Ballo packs hours and hours of fun in the same vein, wrapped in glorious OpenGL-rendered graphics and sporting the grooviest game soundtrack ever to grace your speakers.
To see the review, or to visit Ambrosia's website, click the links below.

ProRattaFactor
Ambrosia Software
El Ballo
Softpedia Article - El Ballo Review


Unity Updated
7:55 AM | Blake Buck | Comment on this story

Over the Edge Entertainment recently updated it's popular game development package, Unity to version 1.1.1. The Unity game editor allows users to create robust games complete with impressive 3D graphics and a powerful physics engine. Unity was used to create Gooball, which was published by Ambrosia Software, as well as a whole slew of game widgets in a recent competition hosted by Over the Edge. The latest versioin adds the following features:

  • Added Capture Screenshot feature. The example in /Users/Shared/Unity/Script Tutorial/CaptureScreenshot.js shows how to make it capture a movie by writing a sequence of screenshots
  • Support for Maya 7.0 .mb and .ma importing
  • Performance improvements when importing .ma and .mb files
  • Added Bake Simulation option to the Maya importer. This automatically bakes IK and expressions to animation curves
  • Added support for directly importing Cheetah3D .jas files (requires version 2.4 of Cheetah 3D)
  • Improved performance when using a lot of SendMessage. For example
  • OverWhelmedArena now runs 50% faster
  • Improved ray-casting performance
  • Dashboard Widgets now have a full-screen button. They run a lot faster in full-screen mode
  • Materials now import diffuse color and are better at locating the assigned texture
To see the full list of updates, or download the trial version of Unity, click the links below.

Unity Technologies
Ambrosia Software
GooBall
Unity Website - Version History



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New Halo Game Announced
7:55 AM | Blake Buck | 11 comments

On the cell phone...

Okay, not quite as exciting. Gamespot recently posted that In-Fusio has secured a three-year deal with Microsoft for the cell phone rights to Halo universe. In-Fusio, who has been developing Microsoft cell phone games for the past year, announced they will be developing a range of Halo applications for North American carriers, with other regions to follow. From the Gamespot article:

Although In-Fusio would not officially confirm what kinds of Halo apps are in the offing, it did offer a few hints. According to the terms of the agreement, In-Fusio will be able to develop and publish "downloadable and embedded" mobile Halo products. This suggests that the company is working on a number of different types of content, such as games of various degrees of complexity, ringtones, screensavers, and wallpaper.
To read the entire article, click the link below.

Gamespot Article - Halo Cell Phone Game
MacSoft
Bungie Studios
Westlake Interactive
Halo: Combat Evolved



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Ultimate Community Mappack 2 Revealed
7:55 AM | Anthony Wang | Comment on this story

As reported by Macologist, new information has been revelead concerning the Ultimate Community Mappack #2 for Unreal Tournament 2004 on the Atari forums. Just like the first edition, the mappacks are designed to add new and improved content to brush off the dust of repeitious maps and gameplay.

Containing approximately 18 maps, custom textures, custom meshes, and more, players will once again find themselves in a myriad of themes and locations happily fragging away the competition. The UCMP website has been given a facelift, there are screenshots up of upcoming maps, and, just like last time, there will be little 'bonus' extras along the way. There is also a promotional Video available for download on their downloads page.
Learn what the talented UT 2004 community pool have created from new maps to custom items be clicking on the links below.

Macologist: Ultimate Community Map Pack 2 Announced
MacSoft
Epic Games
Unreal Tournament 2004
Buy Unreal Tournament 2004



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More Classic WarCraft Music Now Available
7:55 AM | Anthony Wang | 1 comment

Blizzard has released the last music selections from WarCraft II. They include Orc 4, Orc Death, Orc Victory, and Orc War Room. The classic music releases is great for the fans and coincides with the recent announcment of the BlizzCon Original Song Contest where you can use Blizzard music in your own musical creation.

Please follow the links below to download the music and to learn more information.

Orc 4
Orc Death
Orc Victory
Orc War Room
Blizzard Entertainment



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Rise of Legends Faction Feature
7:55 AM | Blake Buck | Comment on this story

IGN recently posted a feature highlighting several factions in Rise of Legends, the sequel to Rise of Nations. Developed by Big Huge Games, Rise of Legends is a real-time strategy game game that puts players in a more fantasy-based setting, rather than the more realisitic approach of the original. From the IGN feature:

Air Destroyer: The most fearsome airborne war vehicle ever seen on Aio, the Vinci Air Destroyer can deliver unbelievable firepower to a very small space in a very short time. The vehicle uses ultra-light Timonium based metals throughout its construction; this, combined with its plethora of rotors, allows this giant rocket-delivery system to fly. The more elaborate Air Cruiser is outfitted with additional bomb and rocket racks, allowing it to unleash a bombardment that will totally devastate large divisions of footsoldiers and deal crippling damage to larger foes.
While no Mac version has been announced, the original Rise of Nations was brought to the Mac by Macsoft.

Rise of Nations: Rise of Legends
IGN Feature - Rise of Legends Factions


World Of Warcraft: The Board Game
7:55 AM | Cord Kruse | 3 comments

Blizzard recently announced the release of the latest game in the Warcraft franchise. This time the series steps out of the digital realm and onto the cardboard of a conventional board game. Created in partnership with Fantasy Flight Games, World of Warcraft: The Board Game is a tabletop fantasy adventure for 2-6 players, playable in 2-4 hours.

From the game's website:

Based on the popular World of Warcraft Massively Multiplayer Online Game from Blizzard Entertainment, World of Warcraft: the Board Game invites the players to choose from 16 characters, drawn from the eight races and nine character classes of the Warcraft universe, and take up arms for the glory of the Horde ... or the Alliance. Travel across Lordaeron, vanquish monsters, gain experience and power, and earn honor for your faction.

World of Warcraft: the Board Game is a team-based fantasy adventure. The Horde and the Alliance factions must compete to be the first to defeat the invincible Overlord be it the lich-king Kel'Thuzad, the dragon Nefarian, or the demon Kazzak or, failing that, to be the last faction standing when it comes to all-out war!

For more information about the game follow the link below.

WoW: The Board Game
Blizzard Entertainment
Fantasy Flight Games


Use Your Brain: New Peripherals Offer Hands Free Gaming
7:55 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

As reported on Worthplaying.com, CyberLearning Technology recently launched SMART BrainGames, video game peripherals allowing players to control the action with their minds. Using technology created by NASA the peripherals use electroencephalogram (EEG) Neurofeedback to safely and accurately measure brainwave activity. Through concentration players can learn to control the action in games.

Using popular titles such as Gran Tourismo, Need For Speed, and Tony Hawk, the SMART BrainGames system rewards players who are able to focus attention and concentrate quickly, calmly and deeply. The system monitors brain activity continuously during gameplay using electroencephalogram (EEG) signals. The faster you get focused, and the longer you stay focused, the better your performance. If you feel anxious or lose concentration, performance declines. Players are strongly motivated to learn how to achieve calm focus in order to stay competitive and improve game results. The skills acquired during game play can be used in life and in learning situations, and parents and teachers often report dramatic improvements in behavior and ability to follow instructions.
Currently the SMART system is only designed to work with Playstation games, but if it becomes popular it might be seen on other platforms as well. For more information check out the site below.

Worthplaying: Control Games With Your Brain


Mac Games News for Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Apple Launches ADC Bookshelf Service10:20 AM
World Of Warcraft Q&A10:20 AM
The Offspring To Play At BlizzCon10:19 AM
George Lucas Honored By Gaming Industry10:18 AM
Being in America's Army10:03 AM
Stubbs the Zombie Preview10:03 AM
Second Life Convention Upcoming10:02 AM
 
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, September 27, 2005 on one page


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