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Monday, May 5, 2008

Blizzard's New Online Store Offers Game Downloads
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 13 comments

Blizzard Entertainment has taken the wraps off its newly redesigned Official Blizzard Store. The overhaul includes the introduction of Blizzard Accounts which will allow users to download full versions of Blizzard games after they have entered the CD-Keys, and serve as a place for fans to sign up for future beta tests. In addition to the new accounts the store also includes a more complete offering of Blizzard licensed products, from board games to strategy guides.

1) Your Blizzard Account is now the main place for you to enter Blizzard's Beta-Test Eligibility Lists. So make sure you setup an account and tick the box inside your Email settings to enter yourself into the Blizzard Beta Lottery.

2) A major new function now available is the ability to download copies of Blizzard games that you have previously purchased. You need to log into your account page and then go to the Games tab. Inside you'll be able to input the CD-Keys from StarCraft, StarCraft Battlechest, StarCraft Anthology, Warcraft III, Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne, Warcraft Battlechest, Diablo II, Diablo II: Lord of Destruction, Diablo II Battlechest (Diablo II downloads will be made available soon) or World of WarCraft, though WoW client downloads are still handled through the WoW website.

The Store now also features most of the Blizzard Licensed Products, including: Board Games, Figurines, Novels, Strategy Guides, and Misc. other products. A new StarCraft Anthology was released, basically a digital download of SC & SC:BW, without the added expense for the BattleChest that includes Strategy Guides.
Follow the links below to check out all the new features.

Blizzard Online Store
Blizzard Account Signup
Starcraft.org: New Blizz Store News
Blizzard Entertainment

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The Amazing Brain Train Released
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Grubby Games has announced its latest title, The Amazing Brain Train. The game challenges players with 15 different brain challenging games, in 5 categories. Brain Train features three different play modes, 32 trophies to unlock, and an online scoreboard.

All aboard! Power up your intellect and embark on an epic quest aboard The Amazing Brain Train! Fueled by your mental energy, Professor Fizzwizzle's Brain Train will take you on a brain-boosting adventure! Put your mighty mind to the test and see how far you can go!

When you download the free demo of The Amazing Brain Train, you have tons of fun in store:
• 15 different brain games, in 5 categories!
• Three different ways to play: Quest Mode, Test Mode, and Practice Mode!
• 32 unique trophies to unlock! Strengthen your brain and achieve them all!
• 16 categories of brainy high score competition! Compete with players around the globe!
• Easy to play - Each game is demonstrated visually; everything is easy to learn!
• Highly customizable controls - Play the game however you want to!
• 60 day money-back guarantee: No risk!
• Mac OS X
• 500MHz or or faster processor, Intel or PPC Mac
• 256MB RAM
• 36MB hard drive space
The Amazing Brain Train costs $19.95. A free demo version is available from the Grubby Games site listed below.

Grubby Games
The Amazing Brain Train
Buy The Amazing Brain Train

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Germs Updated To Version 1.3.1
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

Factor Software has released a new update for Germs, its color matching puzzle title. Version 1.3.1 fixes several bugs and updates the help feature. In Germs, the player picks up germ sprites from a "culture dish" and arranges them on the gameboard in patterns of the same color to make them disappear.

Updates in Germs 1.3.1:

• Fixed an issue that caused the monitor color depth not being properly restored after changing the option for setting the display to thousands of colors while in full screen.
• Fixed the URL for downloading the game when a new version is available.
• Improved error handling while purchasing the game via the Kagi Registration Module.
• The KRM has been reverted to version 1.0.6 due to unsolved problems with version 1.0.7.
• Updated Help.
Head over to the site below for more information about the game.

Factor Software

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StarCraft II Preview
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 5 comments

Computer and Video Games has posted a hands-on preview of Blizzard Entertainment's upcoming StarCraft II, the eagerly awaited sequel to one of the most successful real time strategy games available. The feature offers a look at some of the new units in action, an explanation of the Zerg Queens new abilities, and comments from Blizzard's Dustin Browder and Chris Sigaty.

If the original StarCraft's multiplayer games had one shortfall, it was the sense that there was a set formula for victory; an optimum order in which to construct buildings and units that simply couldn't be countered if built quickly enough. With StarCraft II's multiplayer games seeming to head down a similar route, I asked Sigaty about this design choice.

"StarCraft II is a fast game, a mean game, it's all about attack," he explained. "We tried to add in tougher base defences, but it stopped people rushing. They just hid behind their base and no one attacked for a very long time. Whenever the game defences get too strong the game suffers.

"If you're not as good as someone else you're going to lose, just like in any other sport. If you try to hit a baseball thrown by a professional pitcher, you won't have a good time and in the same way if you play a professional StarCraft player you will get trounced."

With much balancing still ahead, and with the implementation of a collection of player aides that could help level the playing field for newcomers (check out the Learn Don't Burn boxout for more) it's more than possible that my niggling concerns will become moot by the time the game ships. Here's hoping.
To read the full article head over to the link listed below.

CVG: StarCraft II Preview
Blizzard Entertainment
StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty
Buy StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty

Mac Games News for Friday, May 2, 2008

IMG Reviews Mystery Case Files: Madame Fate6:38 AM
Custer Is Modernizing6:00 AM
Mahjong For iPod Reviewed6:00 AM
Mother's Day At PopCap: Buy Games & Fight Breast Cancer6:00 AM
Penny Arcade Adventures Goes Gold6:00 AM
The State Of Indie Gaming6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Friday, May 2, 2008 on one page

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