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Thursday, May 10, 2001

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More Info on Tropico Development
9:23 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

Phil Steinmeyer, the head of PopTop Software, has updated his column on Computer Games Online with more insight into the last hours of development working on Tropcio, PopTop's recently-released island management sim. Titled Inside The Sausage Factory, Steinmeyer's column tends to focus on game development in general, and is a good read for those who design games or are interested in working in the field.

One of the problems Steinmeyer addressed late in the game was a common obstacle: making the game run acceptably on lower-end PCs, particularly in the realm of graphics and animations. He also discusses last-minute art additions, including an "Archeological Dig" event, and points out a quirk in the various types of tourists which appear on beaches.

The development of the box art and ad campaign are also hashed out in his article:

I really liked the result. Brian, and some of the other artists in the office, didn't really like it. We sent it to marketing folks at a number of Take 2 offices and got mixed responses. Germany loved it. The U.S. guys were ambivalent. For a while, it looked like we'd be making two versions of the box, one with the general for Germany, one without for the U.S. However, with a little more work on cleaning up the image, and a little more time to let it sink in, we seem to have come to a rough consensus in favor of the general all-around for the packaging. If you see the box in stores with island-only and no general, you'll know we've changed our minds again.
The "back-and-forth" nature of the responses should give gamers a general idea of how game development can sometimes take place.

Though the article does contain its share of technobabble, again, it is an extremely good read for anyone interested in the inner workings of game development. Steinmeyer is a respected name in the industry, and his advice is worth noting.

Tropico for the Mac has recently been picked up by MacSoft for publication, as noted by IMG in yesterday's article. There is no solid word yet on when the game will be released, though the estimate seems to be around the middle of summer. IMG will be sure to keep readers up-to-date when we get more news on the subject.

IMG - MacSoft to Publish Several Titles
Computer Games Online - Inside the Sausage Factory
PopTop Software
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Other Mac Games News for Thursday, May 10, 2001

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• More Info on Tropico Development9:23 AM
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Mac Games News for Wednesday, May 9, 2001

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Myst III Exile Sound, 3dfx Issues10:37 AM
New Game Company Pledges Mac Support9:51 AM
Interview with Giants: Citizen Kabuko's Ken Capelli9:34 AM
World War II Online Preview, Interview9:17 AM
Mac Doom Legacy Updates for OS 9, X9:11 AM
OS X F.A.K.K.2, PCI Radeon Issues Revisited9:08 AM
More Red Faction Info8:52 AM
GarageGames Q&A8:25 AM
Diablo II Media Mania8:12 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, May 9, 2001 on one page

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