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Thursday, April 4, 2002

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Kohan Games Coming to the Mac?
8:24 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

In the IMG Forums, some intrepid readers have dug up a very interesting bit of information from TimeGate Studios about their much-acclaimed fantasy strategy series, Kohan. The company's first real-time strategy title, Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns, surprised many in the PC press, winning a number of awards upon its release last year for Windows and Linux. TimeGate then followed it up last fall with a standalone prequel expansion to Sovereigns called Kohan: Ahriman's Gift.

Both games feature an amazing AI which is able to take care of the many tedious tasks found in many RTS titles, allowing the player to focus on bigger issues like city-building and preparing for war without having to micromanage.

When asked about the possibilities of a Mac version of either game, TimeGate's Adel Chaveleh made it sound more like a question of when it will happen rather than if if would happen. Here's a clip from his response to IMG reader ground-LOBP-:

We are working diligently on closing a deal to bring all current and future Kohan games to the Mac platform. Please stay tuned to our website as we should be making the announcement soon.
With their support for Linux, it's already clear that TimeGate is willing and able to look at other platforms. Hopefully we'll be able to bring you an official announcement about the game soon, so stay tuned.

Kohan: Ahrimanís Gift
Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns
IMG Forum: Kohan on the Mac

IMG Posts New Mac Hall Comic
10:42 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story

Making sequels of a computer game can be a tricky business to get into. People either hate them or love them. The kids at Mac Hall, admittedly not fans of sequelmania, take their own jab at the phenomenon with a brand new comic entitled, "Recycling = Good?"

IMG: Mac Hall: Recycling = Good?

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Elite Force 2 Officially Announced for PC
8:38 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Activision today officially announced Star Trek Elite Force II for the PC. The game is being developed by Ritual Entertainment, the company that also brought us Heavy Metal F.A.K.K. 2. The original Elite Force game was developed by Raven Software and was published on the Mac by Aspyr Media.

In the sequel players resume the role of Alexander Munro, chief of the Hazard Team, Starfleetís elite security unit. Now assigned to the U.S.S. Enterprise NCC 1701-E, players will explore strange new worlds, battle against both new and familiar civilizations and go on the most dangerous assignments in the galaxy.

Here's more from the press release:

After a brief prologue on the U.S.S. Voyager and a short stint at Starfleet Academy, the Hazard Team is assigned its toughest mission yet — duty onboard the Federation's renowned flagship, the U.S.S. Enterprise NCC 1701-E. Powered by id Software's Quake III: Team Arena engine, Star Trek Elite Force II permits players to break out of the confines of ship bulkheads and spacestation corridors, and undertake away team missions in open environments such as expansive alien landscapes, the void of space and deadly swamps. Additionally, players must master zero-gravity combat when they do battle on the hull of a starship.

Now set in the Star Trek: The Next Generation universe, players can expect to face off against classic Star Trek antagonists such as the Borg, Klingons and Romulans. Players will also fight several never before seen alien species including a mysterious nightmare race. To help players gain the upper hand against such formidable foes, Star Trek Elite Force II allows players to arm themselves with 13 different weapons and gear including a phaser, compression rifle, multi-functional grenade launcher, Romulan disruptor, tetryon gatling gun, a full-featured tricorder, and several all-new weapons.

Over the course of the Star Trek Elite Force II, players will be able to explore different options or tactics when dealing with a threat, as opposed to being forced to pursue a particular path. Additionally, the game boasts a larger number of environments and a significantly longer gaming experience than the first Elite Force.

Star Trek Elite Force II marks the return of multiplayer Holomatch. Similar to the original game, Star Trek Elite Force II offers several multiplayer modes including modes found in the Elite Force Expansion Pack, but with new features and weapons like the Klingon Bat'Leth. Multiplayer modes include Holomatch, Capture The Flag, and Team Holomatch.

While it's too early to speculate whether this game will be making its way to the Mac, the use of the Quake III: Team Arena engine would make a possible port more likely.

Ritual Entertainment
First Elite Force 2 Screenshots
Buy Star Trek Elite Force II

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Bungie Job Opportunities
8:24 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

Gamers who think they can take Marathon to the next level, develop a sequel to Oni, or just want to give the Mac version of Halo a push out the door should be interested in the latest opportunities at Bungie Studios.

Known for the above titles as well as many others, Bungie is currently looking for both a 3D Environment Artist/Designer and a Game Producer. Those interested in applying should reference Bungie's Job Opportunities page, which lists responsibilities and requirements for each job title.

Since 1991, Bungie's games have helped customers avoid work, put their personal lives in stasis and test their self-esteem. We offer industry competitive salaries (or better), and outstanding benefits and perks. This time we mean it.
Good luck to all who choose to apply.

Bungie Studios
Bungie: Job Opportunities

nVidia Driver Update for Mac OS 9
8:24 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

Mac OS 9 gamers should be happy to hear that the drivers for nVidia cards have recently been updated to version 3.0. The update covers the full range of cards currently available for the Mac platform, including the GeForce2 MX, GeForce3, and GeForce4 MX.

Some gamers who have downloaded and tested the drivers have posted favorable results at VersionTracker. Reports include noticeably faster window scrolling and dragging as well as improved frame rates in tested games. One reader even went so far as to report doubled framerates:

Man, this is totally awesome. I have a PC PNY GeForce2 MX 400 flashed for Mac, and my framerates in Oni and Quake 3 are twice as high.
A reader at Accelerate Your Mac! reports that the update requires Mac OS 9.2, and would not install on 9.1. [The requirement may be specifically for OpenGL 1.2.2, which was first included in Mac OS 9.2 and is not available separately. — Ed.]

The driver update is available through the Software Update control panel. Those who wish to download it manually can also find it at Apple's site.

VersionTracker: Nvidia 3.0 Drivers
Apple: Nvidia 3.0 Drivers for Mac OS 9.2

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MacGamer Kicks 4x4 Evo 2's Tires
8:24 AM | Tristram Perry | Comment on this story

IMG's Chris Barylick has written a review of Aspyr's recently released 4x4 Evolution 2 for MacGamer. The review focuses on the various modes of play that the off-roading game features, including Quick Race, Free Roam, Time Attack, Team, Career, Missions, and Multiplayer. Although he professes not to be a driving-game aficionado, Barylick gives the title generally positive marks, with a few constructive criticisms. He raves about the games audio-visual splendor, especially the sound effects (but not the soundtrack) and overall graphics.

Here's his description of 4x4 Evo 2's visuals:

The photorealistic terrain is nothing short of incredible and the physics engine does a great job of capturing realistic movement. Even in 16-bit graphics mode, the levels are gorgeous, realistic and as shiny or gritty as they need to be. The weather system also weighs heavily into the equation; the terrain changing and demanding differently outfitted trucks (such as tires that cut into the earth on rainy levels or chained tires on snow-based levels). Perhaps the most amazing feature of the graphics engine is the light and particle system that accurately reflects surrounding light in addition to kicking up realistic clouds of dirt that layer your vehicle as time goes by.
In the cons column, Barylick takes points off for the game's lack of innovation, relatively high system requirements, and the inelegant multiplayer user interface:
[It] forgoes the elegant look Mac users are used to in favor of a blocky "graphical DOS" interface. In a time when even Windows XP isn't looking as homely as the lonely kid on prom night, an updated multiplayer interface isn't completely out of the question.
The review also includes 17 screenshots, which provide a much better overview of what gameplay might look like than the four screenshots available on Aspyr's own 4x4 Evo 2 page.

MacGamer: 4x4 Evolution 2 Review
4x4 Evolution 2
IMG Review: 4x4 Evolution 2
Buy 4x4 Evolution 2

Mac Games News for Wednesday, April 3, 2002

GarageGames Publishes April Newsletter11:59 AM
IMG Reviews Geneforge11:54 AM
Only Mortal 2 May Feature Voice Chat11:44 AM
Marius net Adds Ranked Myth:TFL Rooms11:00 AM
Myst Miniseries Coming to TV11:00 AM
Shadowbane Delayed11:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, April 3, 2002 on one page

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