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Thursday, March 14, 2013news@insidemacgames.com


StarCraft II: Heart Of The Swarm Released
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 8 comments

Blizzard Entertainment has announced the launch of StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm, the next chapter in the sci-fi RTS saga. The game's single player campaign revolves around Kerrigan and her plans to "take down Arcturus Mengsk once and for all," while the multiplayer aspect features a host of new units and abilities to employ.

“Heart of the Swarm enhances every aspect of StarCraft II,” said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. “In addition to Kerrigan’s campaign and the new multiplayer units and maps, we think players will really enjoy the new online elements and new features that make StarCraft II more fun and easier to learn than ever before.”

Standard, Collector’s, and Digital Deluxe Editions

StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm is now available at retailers nationwide on DVD-ROM for Windows® XP/Windows Vista®/Windows® 7/Windows® 8 and Macintosh® (suggested retail price $39.99). The expansion can also be purchased directly from Blizzard at www.StarCraft2.com for $39.99. In addition, Blizzard is offering a retail-exclusive Collector's Edition of Heart of the Swarm loaded with digital and physical bonus items, available at select retail stores for a suggested retail price of $79.99.

Players also have the option to purchase a Digital Deluxe version of the expansion, which includes all of the digital items from the Collector's Edition, directly from Blizzard via www.StarCraft2.com for $59.99. Anyone who purchases the standard edition digitally or at retail can upgrade to the Digital Deluxe version at any time (for as long as the standalone Digital Deluxe version remains available) for an additional $20.

The Digital Deluxe version of Heart of the Swarm includes a full digital copy of the expansion along with the following in-game bonus items:

  • StarCraft II Torrasque: Crush the enemies of the Swarm with the indomitable Torrasque, a fearsome new look for your zerg Ultralisks.
  • StarCraft II Portraits and Decals: New Swarm-infested portraits and decals help you customize the look of your online profile and in-game army.
  • World of Warcraft® In-Game Pet: The Baneling companion pet is bursting with enthusiasm and ready to explode onto the Pet Battles scene.
  • Diablo® III Blade Wings and Banner Sigil: Grow zerg-like wings in honor of the Queen of Blades, and unfurl an exclusive banner sigil to mark your allegiance to the Swarm in Sanctuary.
The retail-exclusive Collector’s Edition of Heart of the Swarm includes the full version of the game on DVD-ROM and contains the following exclusive bonus items, in addition to the content from the Digital Deluxe version:
  • Behind-the-Scenes DVD and Blu-ray: Immerse yourself in the StarCraft universe with developer commentary, interviews with voice actors, and an in-depth historical retrospective on StarCraft’s eSports legacy narrated by key members of the community.
  • Collector’s Edition Soundtrack CD: Enhance your Heart of the Swarm musical experience with this collection of 11 tracks from the game.
  • Heart of the Swarm Hardcover Art Book: This 144-page tome features never-before-seen art from the expansion, including early concept sketches and meticulous 3D renderings.
  • Zerg Rush Mousepad: This Collector’s Edition mousepad depicts the Terran Dominion holding out desperately under the onslaught of the Swarm.
Heart of the Swarm Game Features

Heart of the Swarm picks up the story where StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty® left off, focusing on Kerrigan's quest to reunite the Swarm and exact revenge on Arcturus Mengsk. Over the course of 20 campaign missions, players will follow Kerrigan as she sweeps across the galaxy, incorporating a variety of distinctive zerg species into her brood. Kerrigan will grow in strength from mission to mission, and players will be able to customize her with powerful new abilities, as well as evolve various zerg strains into fearsome new subspecies to suit their play style.

New weapons of war also debut in Heart of the Swarm's multiplayer, including new units such as Terran Hellbats, Zerg Swarm Hosts, and Protoss Tempests, while certain existing units from Wings of Liberty will be updated with new capabilities. In addition, several new features will enhance the game experience, including group and clan systems; training and versus-A.I. modes, to help new players transition from the campaign into multiplayer; unranked matchmaking; Global Play, enabling players to battle others in different regions around the world; additional stat tracking; user interface improvements; an enhanced physics system, for more visceral-looking battles; “Watch With Others” and “Take Command,” to watch replays with friends as well as jump in and assume control at any point; a leveling system that gives Heart of the Swarm players a new way to earn customization options for their online profiles; and much more.

To celebrate the arrival of Heart of the Swarm and follow the global zerg infestation, Blizzard cohosted a special day-long launch broadcast with noted eSports personality and commentator Sean "Day[9]" Plott, in conjunction with Twitch.tv. Players who missed out on the live broadcast can travel back in time by watching archived video of the event at www.Twitch.tv/StarCraft.

Learn more about the game at the links below.

Blizzard Entertainment (add to watch list)
StarCraft II: Heart Of The Swarm (add to watch list)
Buy StarCraft II: Heart Of The Swarm



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GRID Racing Toward A March 28 Mac Release
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

Feral Interactive has announced that BAFTA award-winning racing game GRID will be released for the Mac on March 28th. Developed and published by Codemasters for PC and consoles, GRID is part of the celebrated TOCA Touring Car series and comes to the Mac under the Feral Legends label.

"GRID is an awesome addition to the Feral Legends label and an incredibly accessible game." said David Stephen, Managing Director of Feral Interactive. "If you want to race on a Mac, this is the place to start."

Style meets substance in GRID, an exhilarating mix of sublime handling, dazzling visuals and extreme speed that puts players behind the wheel of massively race-tuned road cars by manufacturers such as Porsche, Lamborghini and Aston Martin. With a sophisticated damage model, adjustable difficulty settings and a handy "Flashback" feature, GRID rides the sweet spot between sim realism and full-on arcade racing.

GRID World is an extensive career mode that sees players race their way around the world from the US to Europe to Japan on spectacular tracks ranging from city streets to mountain roads to famous circuits such as Spa and Le Mans. Players are challenged to advance from rookie to pro and eventually lead the top racing team in the world by proving their chops in five very different driving disciplines.

The Feral Legends version of GRID comprises the base game plus the 8-Ball and Prestige DLC packs, which soup up the Race Day and multiplayer modes with 18 extra cars, two new events and one new track. The game includes LAN and online multiplayer modes and supports a large selection of gamepads and steering wheels.

Minimum system requirements call for a 1.8GHz Intel Mac with at least 4.0GB RAM, 256MB or better graphics card, and Mac OS 10.7.5 or later. The game does not support the following graphics cards: ATI X1xxx series, ATI HD2xxx series, ATI HD2400, Intel GMA series, NVIDIA 7xxx series and NVIDIA 8xxx series. The following cards require you to have 8GB of system RAM: NVIDIA 9400, NVIDIA 320M and Intel HD3000.

GRID for the Mac will retail in North America for US $24.99, £17.49 (inc. VAT) in the UK and €19.99 (inc. VAT) throughout Europe.

Feral Interactive (add to watch list)
GRID (add to watch list)
Buy GRID


Pre-Order Cities In Motion 2 Now At MGS
6:00 AM | IMG News | 3 comments

Paradox Interactive's Cities in Motion 2 is now available to pre-order at Mac Game Store. Building and expanding on the original Cities in Motion transit simulation game, Cities in Motion 2 offers a variety of new features, including the addition of both co-operative and competitive multiplayer modes.

Cities in Motion 2 is a transit simulation strategy game, where players are responsible for creating efficient, effective, and affordable public transportation systems for some of the world's most famous cities. By refining and implementing designs for their transit networks, ambitious urban engineers will guide their cities to growth and prosperity while upgrading and maintaining many different vehicle fleets, from buses to ferries to subways.

Features:
  • Growing, dynamic cities with picturesque day-and-night cycles, which adapt to affordable transit with new housing and commercial development
  • More vehicles and design options, including roads with dedicated bus lanes and player-managed timetables for transit systems
  • New multiplayer game modes, allowing players to co-design the city of their dreams – or compete for the renown of their citizens
To learn more about the game, and view a trailer, follow the links below.

Cities In Motion 2 (add to watch list)
Cities In Motion 2 Mac Trailer
Buy Cities In Motion 2



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Project Eternity Nearing End Of Prototype Phase
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Obsidian Entertainment has released another new early development blog post focusing on the creation of its upcoming Project Eternity RPG. The post reveals details about the current status of the game, and a description of the various design phases Obsidian goes through in the creation of new titles.

We’re coming to the end of the Prototype phase. While you might think of a prototype as something you would consider before making a game, in our case, we use the term to mean a demonstration of the game that, when successful, demonstrates the game’s vision (AKA “pillars”) and concept. For Eternity, one of our biggest pillars is to recreate the Infinity Engine experience. To that end, we need to have a number of key things in place to make sure our prototype is a success. Things like:
  • Character movement and combat. We want to make sure we have a party of up to six characters, each of whom can be moved independently and/or as a group, which does then imply rudimentary support for formations as well as NPC and basic creature AI. Basic AI meaning to ‘see’ the characters, face them, and then move to them and start attacking. This also means we need character models that have enough animations to demonstrate this convincingly, as well as at least one monster. For our prototype demo, we have one known only as “Chompy” for now. More on him (or her?!) in future updates!
  • Basic RPG mechanics. We need to prove that we’re making an RPG here obviously! We need basics like loot management; for instance, inventory and opening containers like chests. We need basic conversations and quest giving, including receiving a quest, tracking its progress, and then providing a reward for it being completed.
  • Environments. We want to have a working outdoor area as well as a tileset-based interior that the player can move between and throughout. This makes us prove out area transitions too (I can hear it now, “YOU MUST GATHER YOUR PARTY BEFORE VENTURING FORTH...”)
For our outdoor area, we’re bringing life to it by not only building out the rest of the level, but getting our technological solutions in place. We have a working waterfall now, with moving water, replete with foam around the rocks(!) and more.
Read the full post at the link below.

Project Eternity Prototype Update
Pillars Of Eternity Hero Edition (add to watch list)
Pre-Order Pillars Of Eternity Hero Edition


Mac Games News for Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Combat Mission Fortress Italy - New Gustav Line Screenshots 6:00 AM
Control The Light In Reflexions6:00 AM
Shadowrun Return First Gameplay Footage Revealed6:00 AM
Shroud Of The Avatar: Forsaken Virtues Kickstarter Begins6:00 AM
 
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, March 13, 2013 on one page


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