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Monday, October 2, 2000

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Q3A OmniGroup Q&A with IMG
6:00 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

OmniGroup, the company behind many great programs for OS X, has been making a lot of news lately because of their work on the port of Quake 3: Arena. With the release of the OS X executable over the weekend, we decided to ask them a few questions about their work with OS X and games. We wondered about issues with the lack of InputSprockets (and Apple's silence about its replacement, the HID), 3D support, and their informal offer to port other popular titles to OS X for free. Here's OmniGroup's Tim Wood with more:

You've noted that Quake 3: Arena is being
written in Cocoa. What kind of initial support will there be for input

Well, "written in Cocoa" is a bit of a stretch since so little of the code is Mac OS X specific. The small amount of Mac OS X specific code uses Cocoa for some of the input tasks and a few other things (little panels and such).

Currently any input device that would normally generate keyboard and mouse events should work (so, this will usually just mean keyboard, mouse, trackballs or whatever else Apple supports). This is certainly sufficient to support Q3, but flight simulators and other types of games may want joysticks (I don't know anyone that plays Q3 with a joystick so we haven't worried about that).

Also, what sort of 3D support will Q3A have? Currently, only the native ATI
chips seem to work under the OS X Beta. Have you heard from 3dfx on support
for Voodoo 2, 3, or 5 cards?

Q3:A will have whatever 3D support Apple or other vendors provide. That is, we just use the built in GL acceleration -- we don't care what driver or card is doing it. Right now this means ATI Rage 128 and friends. Later, once Apple releases drivers, Radeon support should magically start working. If 3dfx or NVidia or whoever integrates a GL driver into Apple's framework, it will start working too (although there may be additional GL extensions we'd want to take advantage of on different hardware).

Any projects you have in mind for porting currently?

We're certainly interested in porting other games to Mac OS X. Whether we will do them all for free is open to question. So far we've done the id games for free since it really hasn't taken all that much time and since we love them. You certainly won't see us porting 100s of games for free.

How can you guys afford to do all this great work for free? Do you have
a PayPal account we can publicize for donations? :)

The easiest way to get $s to us would be to buy our Mac OS X products (OmniWeb, OmniPDF, OmniOutliner, etc) from

A huge thanks to Tim, the rest of OmniGroup, and Graeme Devine at id Software and Ken Dyke of Apple for all of their hard work. And if you haven't checked out any Omni's other programs, be sure to head over to their web site and do so now -- OmniWeb simply rocks. If you've got a copy of OS X beta and a full install of Q3A, download the OS X application from Macgamefiles now.

IMG News: Q3A on OS X Clarifications
OmniGroup Web Site
Q3A Application for OS X Beta (600k)
id Software
Quake III Arena

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Roger Wilco Beta 2 Released7:39 AM
Mac Soldier of Fortune Update6:00 AM
Myst III Music Interviews6:00 AM
Neo Geo Pocket Emu to be Released6:00 AM
Omni Group Offer, Complications6:00 AM
• Q3A OmniGroup Q&A with IMG6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Monday, October 2, 2000 on one page

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