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Friday, April 3, 2009


Legends Of Zork Now Available
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

Jolt Online Gaming has announced the release of Legends of Zork, a casual browser based MMO return to the world of Infocom's classic text adventure series. The game puts players in the role of an unemployed salesman seeking to find some loot in the remnants of the Great Underground Empire.

“We’ve designed LoZ to be as accessible as possible, hoping to appeal to both original Zork fans (and there’s enough of them working on this that we should know what we’re talking about), while also trying to bring in a whole new generation of players”, said Dylan Collins, CEO of Jolt Online Gaming, “We appreciate that Zork™ is a hallowed franchise, and we have tried our very best to keep within the spirit of the game and pay it the reverence it deserves, while also making some obvious changes to open it up to a wider audience”. He continued, “We don’t know if this approach will make us the most celebrated company in the world, or if we’ve just earned ourselves a whole lot of hate mail, but whatever the result, that’s the balance we’ve tried to strike. We’ve also made it as accessible as possible in a very literal sense, in that we’ve designed it to be played in your Internet browser, at home, in school, in the office. Personally I can’t imagine a better use of a smartphone than to thrash a giant Kobold while on my exercise bike at the gym”.

You are standing in an open field west of a white house. Or maybe you’re not? Maybe you’re sitting inside a blue house? Or a greenhouse? You could be in an internet café, or maybe you’re just checking your email during the commercial break of your favourite show? Wherever you are, as long as you have an Internet connection, you could be playing Legends of Zork™.

With the fall of the Great Underground Empire chaos seems to be gaining the upper hand. Kobolds, trolls, and every dangerous creature imaginable (and occasionally an unimaginable one) have been growing bolder and creeping further from their lairs. Conflict is spreading through the land, mayhem abounds, and the dreaded words on everyones lips are “Recession” and “Redundancy”. Yep, the economy’s gone down the tubes, and you’ve been sacked from FrobozzCo International. But don’t feel bad, everyone else has too. So why sit around moping about your pension when you could be out adventuring? With so much money to be made from cutting your way through hordes of monsters, you’ll never need to worry about your finances again! And if you’re not a very good adventurer, or you run into a grue... well, at least your pension won’t be an issue anymore.

That’s right, 30 years after its first conception, Zork™ is back! After much hype, confusion and then hype again, Legends of Zork™ has finished its testing period, and has now been released to run wild and free on the internet at www.legendsofzork.com
Click over to the links below for more information.

Legends of Zork
Jolt Online Gaming


County Fair And Flower Shop: Big City Break Released
11:54 AM | IMG News | 1 comment

Macgamestore.com today announced the availability of two new games, County Fair and Flower Shop: Big City Break for the Mac through its web site and digital download service, Mac Games Arcade. The games were developed by TikGames.

County Fair:

You are in charge of running your local county fair. What will you do first? Install the biggest, most fabulous rides? Set up tasty food concessions to sell deep fried soda and other delicacies? Fire the staff and assemble your dream team of carnies? Now is your chance to give it whirl. County Fair combines the best of two hot game genres: Resource Management for setting prices, hiring staff and selecting the hottest new rides and attractions and Time Management which lets you keep your customers safe, healthy and coming back for more.
Features:
* Choose from dozens of spectacular rides, game stands, and attractions
* Operate fairs in different locales throughout the US
* Set up tasty food concessions to sell local favorites
* Allocate your resources across advertising, hiring employees, maintaining your attractions and more
Flower Shop - Big City Break:
Can you help Meg turn a small flower shop into a "blooming" success? You'll need to keep the customers happy, the flowers blossoming and the money rolling in. Sound easy? Then see how many demanding customers you can help her serve at once!
Features:
* Over sixty exciting levels
* Help Meg expand her business to four stunning locations
* Enjoy watching flowers bloom before your eyes
* See if you can keep the most demanding customers happy
* Use friendly butterflies to help score more cash, but don't let the bugs eat your profits
* Earn money for useful extras like a peaceful fountain or a bug zapper
County Fair and Flower Shop require an Intel-based Mac with Mac OS X 10.4 or later. A free 60 minute trial version of each game is available for download from either Macgamestore.com or the digital download application, Mac Games Arcade. The full versions cost $19.95 (USD) each to register.

Buy County Fair
Buy Flower Shop: Big City Break



Click to enlarge
Diablo III Screenshots Available
11:48 AM | Cord Kruse | 3 comments

Gameinfowire has posted several new screenshots from Diablo III, Blizzard Entertainment's eagerly anticipated return to the action RPG franchise. The game will allow players to revisit the world of Sanctuary where they must once again take up arms against the demonic forces threatening humanity.

Diablo III will pick up the story twenty years after the events of Diablo II. Mephisto, Diablo, and Baal have been defeated, but the Worldstone, which once shielded the inhabitants of the world of Sanctuary from the forces of both the High Heavens and the Burning Hells, has been destroyed, and evil once again stirs in Tristram. Playing as a hero from one of five distinct character classes, players will acquire powerful items, spells, and abilities as they explore new and familiar areas of Sanctuary and battle hordes of demons to safeguard the world from the horrors that have arisen.

Diablo III will feature a custom 3D-graphics engine to render lush indoor and outdoor areas of Sanctuary with a high level of detail and vivid special effects. The game’s physics-enhanced environments will be interactive and destructible, offering traps and obstacles that create added danger for players and monsters alike. These elements, along with a new quest system and random scripted events, will be integrated into the game’s random-level generator, giving Diablo III the ultimate combination of dynamic gameplay and replayability. Cooperative and competitive play will be available online through an upgraded version of Blizzard Entertainment’s renowned online gaming service, Battle.net.

Blizzard Entertainment is developing Diablo III for simultaneous release on the Windows and Macintosh PC platforms.
View the visuals at the link listed below.

Gameinfowire: Diablo III Screens
Blizzard Entertainment
Diablo III
Buy Diablo III


Mac Pro Extreme 3D Gaming Benchmarks
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

Benchmark site Barefeats recently released the results of a new comparison test, this time evaluating four graphics card available for the Nehalem Mac Pro 2.94GHz. The test revealed the strengths and weaknesses of the Geforce 8800 GT, Radeon HD 3870, Radeon HD 4870, and GeForce 120 GT when running games at maxed out or high settings.

1. The Radeon HD 4870 is a welcome CTO option for the 'early 2009' Nehalem Mac Pro. And we're glad to see that it is sold in kit form. You will need the February 2009 ATI drivers but those should be available to all users in the next Apple system update. (Though Apple only officially supports it in the 2009 and 2008 Mac Pro, we have confirmed it runs in the 2007 and 2006 models.)

2. Different cards are optimized for different games -- or vice versa. You can't take one game and make it the proxy for overall game performance. For example, the 4870 blows away all the others in the X-Plane test but the 8800 is nipping at its heels in the Halo and WoW tests. I imagine it's next to impossible for game developers to optimize their game for all brands and all models of GPU.

5. You don't need 8 cores for extreme gaming. The dual core 2009 iMac 3.06 with the GeForce 130GT beats the GeForce 120 GT and Radeon HD 3870 equipped 8-core Mac Pro 2.93. Also, just before posting this, we restested the Radeon HD 4870 in a 4-core Mac Pro 2.93. It came within one or two FPS of the 8-core in each game.
Head over to the site below to view the full results of the test.

Barefeats: eXtreme Gaming On The Mac Pro



Click to enlarge
StarCraft II: Battle Report Coming Soon, Beta Rumors
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

In a recent post on Blizzard Entertainment's forums StarCraft community manager Karune provided an update on the status of the next Battle Report for StarCraft II, and urged fans to ignore the many false announcements about the game's beta phase. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty will include all new multiplayer challenges, and give players the chance to pick up the Terran's storyline several years after the end of Broodwar.

To give you guys an update, the Battle Report is still in localization and needs to be ready in all supported regions before it will go up. Many times this adds to the development timeline, but it allows everyone worldwide to be able to experience Blizzard updates at the same time, so no particular region feels neglected.

In regards to beta, I'm seeing many websites and hoaxes messing with people's expectations. These are not official announcements, and when that time comes, the official announcement will be written by a blue or posted up on official websites like battle.net and StarCraft2.com.

The developers are hard at work in getting StarCraft II to a beta phase. With each of the Q&As, you can see the types of updates they are working on. More and more, we are trying to include 'behind the scenes' type content in the Q&As (localized in all regions as well), which unfortunately adds a little bit to the production timeline of Q&As as well, but gives the community something to 'see' in addition to what they 'read.' Comparing Q&A 49 & 50, they have changed drastically from say Q&A 1 & 2. In order to get more content out there as well, we have begun soliciting questions from fansites a part of our fan site program, so stay on the look out for those when they get answered.

We have a habit of holding things back at Blizzard to make sure when we finally show everyone, it will be up to par - we want to make sure it will our products are something both the community will love to play and something that we too can be very proud of.
Visit the Starcraftwire.net page below to read more.

StarCraftWire.net: SC II Development Updates
Blizzard Entertainment
StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty
Buy StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty


Mac Games News for Thursday, April 2, 2009

Apple Games Features LEGO Batman6:00 AM
Civilization IV: Gold Edition Ships6:00 AM
Kivi's Underworld Version 1.002 Released6:00 AM
Tycoon Games Releases College Romance Visual Novel6:00 AM
 
View all of the Mac games news for Thursday, April 2, 2009 on one page


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