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Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Age of Empires III Patch Released
9:10 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

MacSoft today announced the release of a new update designed to further enhance the gameplay of its recently-released real-time strategy game, Age of Empires III. The update smooths out several minor issues that have affected gameplay for a small number of players.

The update corrects several minor issues, including:

A bug in the unit pathfinding code that could lead to native animals causing random out-of-sync errors during multiplayer games between PowerPC and Intel Macs.

A rare crash in the SFX callback system that occurred during sound buffer object deletion.

A crash in the Scenario Editor when placing objects with NVIDIA hardware and shader rendering active.

A problem with rendering dynamic shadows on PowerPC Macs.

A problem with rendering water in the Home City scenes when playing in higher detail shader modes.

Font sizing issues when playing on very large monitors with low DPIs and corrupted text in the Multiplayer post-game dialog.

Control-click + Shift can now be used with single button mice and trackpads to allow waypoint placement.
The update, which weighs in at 13 MB, is available for download at

Macgamefiles: Age of Empires III 1.0.1
Age of Empires III
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Get Well Wishes To IMG's Michael Phillips
2:01 PM | Tuncer Deniz | 10 comments

The crew at Inside Mac Games would like to send along get well wishes to one of our very own. Yesterday we learned that Michael Phillips recently woke up from a 10-day coma and is currently in hospital. Michael, who has Spinal Muscular Atrophy, has been a writer for IMG since 2001.

If you would like to send your get well wishes to Michael, please email us at and we will forward your message onto Michael.

Get well Mike, we miss you!

Apple Posts Hot Deals
1:52 PM | Tuncer Deniz | 1 comment

Small Dog Electronics has deals on a wide variety of Mac compatible hardware and software products including Hot Deals exclusive prices on the following intems:s: Xerox Phaser 6120N Postscript color laser printer w/USB 2.0 and Ethernet networking for only $279!; Palm Tungsten E2 handheld color organizer for only $179!; Altec Lansing VS2321 3-piece multimedia gaming speaker system for only $39.99!; and much more. Get all the details at the following URL:

Sweetwater Sound has deals on a variety of Mac compatible products including: Novation XioiSynth 49 4-octave synthisizer USB MIDI controler for only $449.99!; Pro Tools custom keyboard from Digidesign for only $119!; learn composition with world-class orchestral sounds with Notion Protégé from VirtuosoWorks for only $89.97!; easy to follow Digital Performer Tutorial from MacAudioLab for only $79.95!; GuitarBox Pro from M-Audio for only $629.97!; and much more. Get all the details at the following URL:

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Inside Mac Games Reviews WoW: The Burning Crusade
12:56 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Inside Mac Games has posted a review of Blizzard's recently released expansion pack, World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade. Here's a clip from the review:

TBC expands the WoW universe into the stars and beyond, set on a fractured planet, once inhabited by the magical Draeni. Behind The Dark Portal players find a myriad of new zones, each with their own new quests, items, stories and history, all wonderfully designed and produced. Blizzard’s designers have once again proved that they can create a truly magnificent world, be it the floating, waterfall graced islands of Nagrand or the desolate, war ridden wastes of Shadowmoon Valley. The croaking of frogs, sound of distant drums and voice acting are all, as usual, top quality and are unique in the WoW universe.
To check out the full review, please follow the link below.

Inside Mac Games Review: World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade
Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade
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The Sims Life Stories Reviewed
9:10 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Game Daily recently posted a review of The Sims Life Stories for PC, the first in a new series of Sims titles developed by Aspyr Media and designed with laptop computer users in mind. The game introduces a unique storyline complete with romance, dramatic twists, and unlockable content. Game Daily gave the game a score of 8 out of 10.

Life Stories' game play almost mirrors The Sims 2, with features that were once expansion specific (like the Influence meter from The Sims 2 University and the romantic compatibility from Nightlife) included. Players control the life of a single Sim by maintaining relationships and making decorative improvements. However, in addition to satisfying a Sim's needs and wants, players need to complete story specific goals that move the story forward. Most goals, like asking someone out to dinner, are fairly simple. Others require a little more work, like improving relations until that special person wants a hug or a kiss. Life Stories gears itself toward a more casual audience, not the heavy Sims player, although veteran gamers may enjoy this game too. Relationships form faster, Sims don't take as long to improve skills and major events like first kisses happen with less effort.

Things start off simply, but managing a job, a life and the story goals all at once can tire Sims out very quickly. Most of the time, they barely have the stamina to keep going at the end of the day. On the bright side, focusing on the needs of only one Sim throughout most of the story keeps the game manageable. Additionally, due to the accelerated pace and emphasis on story, this game doesn't get anywhere near as hectic as a Sims 2 session.
Aspyr Media has yet to officially announce a Mac version of Life Stories, but the company's status as developer on the new project and past history suggest the game will likely make its way to the platform eventually.

Click on the link below to read the full review.

Game Daily: The Sims Life Stories Reviewed
The Sims Life Stories
Aspyr Media

Home Versions Of Vista Forbid Virtualization
9:10 AM | Cord Kruse | 15 comments

Users of virtualization products such as Parallels and VMWare will have to pay a higher price if they want to run Windows Vista under emulation without violating the End User License Agreement. The EULAs for Home Editions of Microsoft's latest OS specifically forbid users from booting the software "within a virtual (or otherwise emulated) hardware system."

Although the more expensive Business and Ultimate versions of Vista do allow for virtualization it is not without restrictions. The EULAs state that if you run the OS within a virtual machine "you may not play or access content or use applications protected by any Microsoft digital, information, or enterprise rights management technology or other Microsoft rights management services or use BitLocker (Vista's data encryption feature)."

In a recent blog, Parallels head of marketing Ben Rudolph discussed the restrictions:

In short, this means that if you’re a user and you want to run Vista virtually, you MUST buy the highest end versions of Vista, or you’ll be in violation of the Microsoft EULA.

Here are the price points for each version:
Home Basic $199
Home Premium $239
Business $299
Ultimate $399

To me, this strategy could hold back users who embrace cutting-edge technologies like virtualization, which means they won’t upgrade to Vista. This means that Microsoft has effectively lost an upgrade customer (in the case of Windows PCs) or an entirely new customer (for Mac and Linux users).

Microsoft has a great opportunity to open their operating system to an entire market of Mac users who would never normally use Windows, and to ease the way for enterprises around the globe to upgrade to Vista.

Follow the link below to read more.

Parallels Blog: Vista And Virtualization

Mac Games News for Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Red Faction Sequel Underway?1:20 PM
Age Of Empires III Reviewed7:39 AM
Half-Elves Get Crazy In The Broken Hourglass7:39 AM
New Petroglyph (SW: Empire at War) RTS Coming to PC7:39 AM
TransGaming/NVIDIA Strike Mac Gaming Deal7:38 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, February 6, 2007 on one page

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