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One on One with Mark Adams
June 28, 2001 | Tuncer Deniz

Having ported classics such as Air Combat, Links LS, and Unreal Tournament, Mark Adams is probably the most well known celebrity in the Mac games arena. One on One with Mark Adams, a new monthly feature at Inside Mac Games, is essentially a conversation between two old friends talking about various Mac game related topics. The impromptu conversation deals with topics such as the strength of the overall Mac market, OS X, Apple, and more.

Tuncer: The first thing I'm really curious to hear your thoughts on are the overall health of the Mac games market. How do you think things are looking? Especially compared to last year?

Mark: I think the market is pretty healthy. We're getting a good mix of games (fps, role playing, strategy, consumer), and sales seem to be building from a couple years ago. The average game sales aren't going up quite as fast as we'd like, but they aren't going down. And the big hit games like The Sims have done extremely well - I think better than even optimistic projections a year ago, right before it was released.

What is the vibe you get from publishers about the market over the past few quarters?

Tuncer: I certainly get that feeling as well. I think with companies like Aspyr and MacSoft leading the pack and new comers like MacPlay and Destineer start to mature a bit, we'll see an increasing amount of titles on the Mac. I am, however, worried about there being too many Mac game publishers, especially if they each have to start competing against each other by bidding on the same tiles....

But at this point it looks like each of those companies is working with specific partners who don't have open bidding. So overall I hope it works out for everybody.

Mark: I think that has already happened. We've had a few titles over the past year that two or three publishers were all bidding for (and interestingly once or twice we ended up reviewing code for the same game for multiple publishers). I don't want to see those situations get ugly either - we try to stay neutral. We generally give the same bid for our work to whichever publisher contacts us, and figure the actually negotiations for the rights will then hinge more on the Mac publishers pitch than worries about if the port will be better from one or the other.

Tuncer: So, speaking of new publishers...let's talk Destineer. Peter Tamte is finally making some noise and I was pretty jazzed to see his announcements. How long have you guys been working on Age of Empires II and how is it coming along?

Mark: We've been working on it a few months, and itís coming along nicely. I'm anxious to see it at alpha/beta, because I never played the AOE series on Mac or PC. Itís definitely a large project, but we have two of our key programmers on it- Mark Krenek (who most recently did Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2) and Brad Oliver (just finished Alice).


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