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Thursday, December 20, 2001



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Mac Myth III Ships at Macworld SF
3:07 PM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

MacSoft's Judy Corey has confirmed what we suspected in an earlier story today: the Mac version of Myth III: The Wolf Age is now gold. Gold Master status means it has passed the final round of testing and has been sent off for duplication. With most games taking a few weeks to make it through production and onto store shelves, Mac gamers attending the upcoming Macworld Expo San Francisco should be able to walk away with a copy.

Here's the official line from MacSoft:

MacSoft is excited to announce that Myth III: The Wolf Age will be available at the upcoming Macworld Expo, January 8 - 11, in San Francisco. Myth III, which went gold this week, is predicted to speed up the charts in record time. Many already know the story of Myth III: The Wolf Age, which is a prequel to the two previous games. MumboJumbo has taken great care to stay true to the Myth series while enhancing the game play.
While the wait may have been long, the time is now at hand for Myth fans.

In case you haven't yet pre-ordered your copy of Myth III, be sure to head over to the IMG Store for a great deal for MacGames CD subscribers. Also have a read through IMG's preview of the game for much more on its features and enhancements.

Update: MacSoft's Nate Birkholz has posted to the IMG Forum that a demo of Myth III should be available tomorrow. Unlike the PC demos, both single-player and multi-player modes will be included in the one Mac demo. Read through the rest of his post for the full scoop.

IMG Preview: Myth III: The Wolf Age
IMG Forum: Myth 3 for Mac


Must-Have Mac OS X Games
12:42 PM | IMG News | Comment on this story

So you've been running Mac OS X full-time now, but as cool as it is, you're finally tired of playing with TextEdit? You're tired of showing off your screensavers, because, let's face it, they're the coolest thing you have installed right now? Fear not, gentle reader, for here's a comprehensive list of Must-Have games for OS X.

As Kit Pierce writes in a feature for IMG on "Must Have Mac OS X Games":

What about the big-ticket titles that have blipped onto the screen for Mac OS X, or even the smaller titles that made their way under the radar? Yes, they're out there, and they're just waiting to be played. Many are promised, but many are available now.
Follow the link below to read the full text of our newest feature.

IMG Feature: Must Have Mac OS X Games



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Final Week of the Otto Matic Giveaway
11:52 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

As the year of 2001 comes to a close, so does Aspyr's Otto Matic Movie Quiz. The lucky winner of last week's contest is Benjamin Tidquist, who correctly answered the following questions about Earth vs the Flying Saucers:

Q: Who wrote the screenplay?
A: Curt Siodmak.

Q: By what other title was the film known?
A: Invasion of the Flying Saucers.

Q: What was the film's release date in Sweden?
A: August 27th, 1956.

Congratulations to Mr Tidquist, who wins a free copy of Otto Matic!

As this is the final week of the trivia contest as well as the end of the year, the folks at Aspyr decided to give a little holiday twist to the last batch of questions.

1. Who was Rudolf the red-nosed reindeer's father?

2. How many gifts are given in the 12 days of Christmas?

3. Come up with a cool holiday nickname for Aspyr's Chris Silman (and don't be too mean. Remember, you have to go through him to get the Otto Matic).

To win the contest, be the first submit your correct answers to newsletter@aspyr.com.

IMG Preview: Otto Matic
Aspyr Media: Otto Matic


Gettysburg Released for Mac
11:37 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

By Design sends word today that Gettysburg, their latest Mac-only war simulation, is now ready for release. This civil war re-creation puts you in the middle of the action on July 1-3, 1863 with the Union fighting the Confederacy. One of the main features of Gettysburg is your ability to play on either side of the battle, or even switch between the two. Other features of the game include capturing enemy flags, realistic military rankings, and detailed graphics.

Here's a partial list of features from their Web page:

  • Regimental level conflict, command hundreds of unit!
  • Great new graphics, see hedge rows, streams, chateaux, and smoke clouds hang over the battlefield.
  • Skirmishers!
  • All the commanders down to the Division level are present.
  • Command your units as groups. You can move hundreds of units with a click of the mouse.
  • Capture enemies flags. Increase the pride of your troops when they carry back enemy flags from a melee.
Check out the Gettysburg page for much more, and be sure to download the demo available now to get a taste of how the game plays. The title features very low system requirements, so it should be playable on almost any modern hardware. Gettysburg needs only System 7, 10 MB of RAM, a 12" color monitor, and a 68030 or PPC processor.

Gettysburg
Gettysburg Demo (4.4 MB)



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Combat Mission 2 Interview
11:22 AM | Brian Rumsey | Comment on this story

The gaming Web site HomeLan Federation & Alliance posted an interview yesterday with Steve Grammont and "Madmatt", two designers working on the upcoming Combat Mission: Barbarossa to Berlin. Grammont is the president of Battlefront.com, the publisher of Barbarossa to Berlin, which is being developed by Big Time Software.

The interview contains a lot of good information on development, gameplay, and so on:

HomeLAN: Was a sequel always in the works for Combat Mission or was the decision made after the first game was released?

Grammont and Madmatt: To be honest the success of Combat Mission itself pretty much took us by surprise but it was always hoped that there would be enough sales to allow us to make a sequel set in the Eastern Front. In fact, the overall vision of Combat Mission is to fully cover the European Theater in several games. Combat Mission Beyond Overlord was always planned to cover the Western Front after D-Day. The sequel would handle the Eastern Front and then we planned to have at least two more games after that. One would focus on the North African and Mediterranean Campaign and one would cover the early war (invasion of France and the lowlands, Poland etc..) Right now though, all our energies are focused toward making sure the sequel is every bit as, if not more, accurate and enjoyable as the original.

Combat Mission: Barbarossa to Berlin, the sequel to Combat Mission: Beyond Overlord, is projected for an early 2002 release, although no definite date has been given. Take a look at the interview for yourself to learn a bit more about what this game is shaping up to be like.

HomeLAN: Combat Mission 2 Interview
Battlefront.com
IMG News: Combat Mission 2 Preview



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More Info on BioWare/Interplay Split
11:12 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

IMG readers may remember earlier stories that noted a lawsuit by BioWare, developers of Neverwinter Nights, against Interplay, license holders of the Dungeons & Dragons trademark and, until that point, the planned publishers of the role-playing game.

This news upset more than a few people, as Neverwinter Nights could be regarded as one of the most highly anticipated RPGs of all time. In a bid for further information, GameSpy recently went straight to the source of the D&D trademark itself, Wizards of the Coast, and asked them for their own views and details on the recent lawsuit.

Anthony Valterra, Business Manager for Wizards of the Coast, expressed his disappointment over the lawsuit. He noted that, far from hurting pen-and-paper D&D, games like Neverwinter Nights could actually create crossovers between the two mediums, with players consulting and using D&D manuals to enhance their computer gaming as well as using their computer experiences to supplement possible pen-and-paper games.

Interestingly enough, Interplay is not the only company to hold rights to D&D games. Developer Infogrames is also reported to have full rights, according to Valterra:

Interplay owns the rights to do a game and BioWare does not. BioWare has developed a nice game with Neverwinter Nights. But we don't have any other rights to sell to BioWare. Infogrames has all the rights to make D&D games now, except for what Interplay's contract calls for.

I'm not sure but I think Interplay might have a couple more years in which to make D&D games and might even have a renewal clause.

As far as the possibility of BioWare releasing Neverwinter Nights under a more generic label of some sort, Valterra is quick to shoot down that thought. Besides not being able to use any intellectual property or trademarks from the D20 system contained within 3rd Edition D&D, he notes that the other option, which would be to use the D20 trademark license, would require showing what portions of Neverwinter Nights are based on open gaming rules, meaning that the source code would have to be included with each copy distributed.

Disappointing news to be sure, though it doesn't necessarily mean we won't ever see Neverwinter Nights. As if in answer to these somewhat disheartening tidings, BioWare has recently revamped their Web site and is currently working on a brand new Neverwinter Nights section. They still have the game listed for an early 2002 release and have expressed their wish to see it on the Mac as well.

For more information on Wizards of the Coast's take on the current Neverwinter Nights situation, be sure to check out GameSpot's story on the subject. Readers wanting more information on the lawsuit itself should check out IMG's previous coverage.

IMG News: BioWare Drops Interplay; NWN Interview
IMG Review: Neverwinter Nights
GameSpy: GameSpin
Interplay
MacPlay
Neverwinter Nights
Buy Neverwinter Nights


Game TV Talks
11:12 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

UGO has posted a new interview with CEO Charles Hirschhorn of G4 Media about their plans to launch a strictly gamer-oriented TV channel next spring. IMG brought you the first word of these plans a few weeks back, and this Q&A gives a some more hints of the founder's vision for the channel. Hirschhorn talks a little about his past in the television industry, defends his position of going after the young male gamer first, and even describes what G4 Media means (besides the implication they'll cover Mac gaming well):

UGO: So what's a G4 and why do you think the world is now ready for a televised 24-hour game channel?

Hirschhorn: I think the world's been ready for a Game Channel for years. I'm sorry it's taken so long for us to get it together.

As a former television producer and programming executive, I have watched the video game industry grow not just in terms of money spent, but in the quality of game play, graphics, sophistication and players. I continue to be surprised that there is so little TV programming for gamers. I think this opportunity has been defined by millions of gamers who have contributed to a lifestyle that deserves a TV network.

G4 means we are "for games." It also represents four means of distribution for games: PC, consoles, handheld, and wireless; four kinds of gamers: casual gamers, hard-core gamers, developers, and people simply curious about games; also four generations of gaming: pixel gaming, vectors gaming, wire frames, and now, polygonal graphics.

Have a read through the rest of the UGO interview for the low-down on G4 Media. Also be sure to check out their Web site, and petition your cable provider to make sure you can watch it next spring.

UGO: Charles Hirschhorn Interview
IMG News: 'G4' Gaming TV Network Announced


Mac Myth III & PC Patch Soon
11:12 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

Mark Dochtermann of MumboJumbo has given GameSpot a quick update about the status of a bug-fixing patch for the PC version of Myth III: The Wolf Age. Apparently they're getting very close to release of the patch now, and they want to make sure the patch coincides with the Mac release of the game. While anything that might head into production now would obviously still take a few weeks to get onto store shelves, it's still great news for Mac gamers wanting to get their hands on this 3D strategy title. Here's a clip from their report:

According to Dochtermann, both the PC and Macintosh versions of the patch are in final testing and will soon be available, along with Vengeance, the game editor for Myth III. The developer delayed the release of the PC patch in order to release the PC and Macintosh patches simultaneously.
Remember that Vengeance is a cross-platform tool as well, and it should make its way to the Mac for those Myth-editing types. Once the Mac version is finalized, we're hoping MacSoft will also provide a demo of the game, so stay tuned to IMG for the latest.

IMG Preview: Myth III: The Wolf Age
GameSpot: Myth III patch on the way


Westlake Looks Forward and Back
11:12 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

Westlake Interactive has taken a look back at its many accomplishments over the year 2001. Now in its fourth year, the company has quietly become a Mac porting powerhouse, churning out twelve excellent Mac games this year alone and winning a number of awards for games like Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 and Age of Empires II. Westlake has also been a huge supporter of Mac OS X, releasing a number of new, as well as updating older, titles for Apple's next-generation operating system.

Here's a clip from Westlake's justifiably proud Web page looking ahead to next year's releases:

2002 is already shaping up to be a banner year for Westlake and Mac games. Currently on deck for a 2002 release are Sid Meier's Civilization III, Max Payne, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Return To Castle Wolfenstein, and Spider-Man. 2002 will also find Westlake finishing work on its first console title, Deus Ex: The Conspiracy, for the Sony PlayStation 2 (developed in close association with Ion Storm Austin).
Be sure to head over and read through the rest of Westlake's 2001 Year in Review. Many thanks to Mark Adams and the rest of the team at Westlake for 42 Mac gaming titles over the years, and best wishes in times to come!

Westlake 2001 Year in Review
Westlake Interactive


Mac Games News for Wednesday, December 19, 2001

Jason Jones Finally Answers1:15 PM
Salon on Mac Gaming11:50 AM
MacPlay's Macworld Plans10:08 AM
Cinemaware Q&A Posted10:00 AM
New Dragon's Lair 3D Shots Posted9:54 AM
Oni Released for OS X9:46 AM
Aspyr Newsletter: Otto, Harry, and the Elite Force6:00 AM
Aspyr to Publish Return to Castle Wolfenstein6:00 AM
HappyGear Updated to 1.36:00 AM
The Omni Group Gets Interviewed6:00 AM
 
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, December 19, 2001 on one page


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Tuesday, December 18, 2001
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