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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Zuma's Revenge! Coming September 15
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

PopCap Games has announced that Zuma’s Revenge!, the sequel to the original game, will be available September 15 for Mac and PC. The game reinvents the marble shooting, color matching action of the original with high-resolution graphics, new game mechanics, all-new modes, and new power-ups.

“The original Zuma has millions of fans around the world,” said Jason Kapalka, co-founder and Creative Director at PopCap, “so there was a lot of pressure when doing the sequel to really deliver something they’d love, without wrecking the classic Zuma gameplay. Zuma’s Revenge! adds a ton of variety to the mix, with over 60 new maps, all new power-up balls like the Laser Frog and Lightning Color Nuke, and a half dozen custom ‘boss battles’ against giant, evil tiki spirits. Plus we’ve added several new modes, including a speedy ‘blitz’-style challenge game and the fearsome Iron Frog gauntlet for the most elite players.”

In Zuma the player takes the role of a fearless ball-shooting frog, exploring ancient temples and ruins. By firing colored spheres into an advancing chain of balls to make matches of three or more, the frog blasts his way through a series of arcade challenges. The sequel brings the player to an all-new setting, the Polynesian paradise of Zhaka Mu, and ups the ante with nearly triple the screen resolution of the original game, cool 3-D particle effects, and support for widescreen monitors. A full list of new features in Zuma’s Revenge! will be available at launch.

Rick Fortin, whose score of 3,384,820 (with 34 extra lives!) in the original Zuma is the highest known, has been beta testing Zuma’s Revenge! and feels the new game lives up to the high standards of the franchise. “From the spectacular visuals and 3-D effects – which work great even on an older PC like mine – to the new game modes such as the maddening (but beatable!) Iron Frog, PopCap has actually improved the game in every respect. I have to say that the wait was well worth it for this game. It’s all that I expected and much more!”
Available on September 15 via download, Zuma’s Revenge! will carry a list price of US$19.95. Video sneak peeks and other advance information about the new game can be found at the PopCap Games website linked below.

PopCap Games

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CCP Unveils DUST 514 Console Game Linked To EVE Online
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

CCP Games has revealed DUST 514, a console-based hybrid MMO/FPS set within EVE Online's sci-fi MMO universe. The game features first-person shooter and real time strategy style gameplay and will interact directly with EVE Online. The interplay between the two games is intended to open the EVE universe to console gamers. The game is entering its third year of production at CCP's Shanghai studio.

“We launched EVE Online in 2003 and have experienced steady annual growth– a fact we appreciate as a rarity in the world of MMOs, especially given the global economy of the past year,” said Petursson. “Our success with EVE Online has afforded us the highest caliber global design and production talent in gaming. With a team of the best minds in the industry, we conceived an ambitious new take on virtual world development with DUST 514.”

The primary gameplay of DUST 514 features brutal ground combat that takes place on the surface of planets from EVE, delivering the visceral, adrenaline-fueled experience of futuristic firefights. Developed for the current generation of consoles, DUST 514 combines equal parts battlefield reflexes and strategic planning, giving commanders and ground infantry real-time configurable weapons and modular vehicles to manage dynamic battlefield conditions.

Now entering its third year of production, DUST 514 is the primary development focus of CCP’s Shanghai studio. The team includes veteran designers of EVE Online and experienced talent from various sectors of the video game industry.

“Since opening our Shanghai studio, we have invested in building a team that wants to push the envelope in gaming and be pioneers in the industry,” said Kjartan Pierre Emilsson, Managing Director of CCP Shanghai. “Having led the design and development efforts of the project from start to finish, our studio is honored to call DUST 514 our first title release.”
Further details about DUST 514 will be revealed at CCP’s annual Fanfest event October 1-3, 2009 in Reykjavik, Iceland. Follow the links below for more information.

DUST 514 Image 1
DUST 514 Image 2
CCP Games
EVE Online

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Warhammer Online: Age Of Reckoning Mac Beta Reviewed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Destructoid has posted a short review of the Mac beta of Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning from Mythic Entertainment. The game features Realm vs Realm combat and allows players to enter a grim fantasy world where the armies of Order (Dwarfs, High Elves, and Empire) and Destruction (Greenskins, Dark Elves, and Chaos) collide to determine the fate of nations.

WAR for the Mac launched at the end of the July. Still in beta, the client isn’t without its faults. Patching takes hours and a nasty bug causes the installer to freeze during the download process. But these are the only two issues I’ve noticed. The game is a smooth joint. The character animations are clean, the controls are responsive, the textures are impressive and the frame rate is steady.

I’ve played this port for a little over eight or so hours scattered over the course of several days. Because it’s an older MMO, you’ll have to take into account that my experience with the game has been in an area that is largely under populated by both characters and vicious villains. I have spent time in a few RvR conflicts and haven’t noticed any lack of responsiveness or stutter.
The Mac version of WAR is schedule for release in the Fall of 2009 and will allow Windows and OS X players to battle and quest together on the same servers.

Head over to the link below to read more.

Destructoid: Warhammer Online Mac Beta Review
Mythic Entertainment
Warhammer Online: Age Of Reckoning
Pre-Order Warhammer Online: Age Of Reckoning

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Nelly Furtado And Others To Sing In The Sims 3 Expansion
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

TheEA Play label of Electronic Arts has announced that in The Sims 3 World Adventures players will listen to "Simlish-style" music from artists like GRAMMY award-winner Nelly Furtado, rising star Pixie Lott, German sensation Stefanie Heinzmann, breaking new rock band Matt & Kim, and global indie dance rockers Young Punx.

“I was really excited when I heard EA wanted me to be involved with The Sims 3 World Adventures,” said Nelly Furtado. “I love languages, and it was so fun singing in Simlish.”

“We have been busy recording the eclectic mix of songs in Simlish, the official language of The Sims,” said Robi Kauker, Audio Director for The Sims Studio at EA. “The collection of artists’ songs in the game are fantastic and there’s something every player will recognize and enjoy.”

“I think it’s really cool to have a song in The Sims 3 World Adventures,” added Pixie Lott. “You can go over to a radio in the game, play the Simlish version of “Mama Do,” and take that radio with you anywhere you go inside the game!

Current artists and songs featured in the game include:
Nelly Furtado – “Manos al Aire”
Pixie Lott – “Mama Do”
Stefanie Heinzmann – “No One Can Change My Mind”
Matt & Kim – “Daylight”
Young Punx – “Juice and Gin”
Additional artists involved with The Sims 3 World Adventures will be revealed in the coming months. The game will ship to retailers worldwide the week of November 16, 2009.

Click over to the Worthplaying site below to view new screens and a trailer from the game.

Worthplaying: The Sims 3 Screens, Trailer
Electronic Arts
The Sims 3: World Adventures
Buy The Sims 3: World Adventures

Mac Games News for Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Apple Adds New Trailer For Plants Vs Zombies6:00 AM
EVE Online: An Unholy Rage Against The Illegal ISK Trade6:00 AM
Mega BrickBash 3000 Updated6:00 AM
StarCraft II: Single Play Preview, Interview, Mission Guide6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, August 18, 2009 on one page

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