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Wednesday, April 24, 2002

The Dark Tide II: Nightfall Released
9:38 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

Fans of the excellent LucasArts first-person shooter Dark Forces will be happy to know that Patrick Haslow has posted to the IMG Forums with new word on the second add-on episode in The Dark Tide series. Haslow and Matthew Hallaron received much praise for their first Dark Tide level.

Owners of this 2.5D shooter will find complete instructions on how to install the game at The Dark Tide's web site, though Haslow is also helping out anyone having issues in the forum thread. This second level weighs in at just over 8 MB:

In Episode I, Kyle Katarn and Jan Ors crash landed in the Jundland Wastelands of Tatooine. While Kyle was rescued by Dash Rendar, Jan was ambushed and captured by the Empire. The second episode begins with Kyle Katarn rushing to the aid his friend. With his trusty bryar pistol and the Mark IV Goob Gun, Kyle must penetrate Tatooine's Imperial Garrison, and face a wily and corrupt officer.
For those that never tried Dark Forces or the original Dark Tide level, a demo is available at MacGameFiles now, and the full version is available at the LucasArts online store.

The Dark Tide
Star Wars: Dark Forces
IMG Forum: The Dark Tide II: Nightfall
Download The Dark Tide II
Download the Dark Forces Demo (4.5 MB)

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IMG Reviews the Altec Lansing 621
12:07 PM | IMG News | Comment on this story

IMG has posted a review by Jason Sims of the Altec Lansing 621 speaker system:

The 621 is the top-of-the-line speaker set in Altec Lansing's "Music" series of computer products, and not without good reason. They look great and they sound even better. The set includes two speakers (each with a full-range driver and a tweeter), a sub and a wired remote.

There's a lot of hype these days about multichannel audio systems (with four or five speakers and a sub) and various surround sound technologies in home theaters (Dolby Digital and DTS) and in PC gaming (EAX and OpenAL). As a Mac user, it seems kind of pointless to invest in a multichannel audio system, at least for the moment. Mac OS X supports multichannel audio natively, but the little 1/8" (headphone-style) jack on your computer itself will only put out 2 channel stereo. And in Mac OS 9, most audio is handled by the Sound Manager, which only supports 2 channel stereo. In either case, you need special hardware to be able to enjoy multichannel audio on a Mac, and the only option available right now (Creative Labs' Sound Blaster Live!) can hardly be recommended, due to its bug-ridden OS 9 software and complete lack of support for OS X. My point is that unless you are doing professional audio work on your Mac and have a multichannel audio interface, there is really no sense in buying a multichannel audio system....

For the rest of our review, follow the link below.

IMG Review: 621

Warcraft III Editor Confirmed for the Mac
11:56 AM | Sean Smith | Comment on this story

Luciano Pecorella let us know about a very brief audio interview posted at the Italian web site games4mac in which Bill Roper of Blizzard Entertainment confirms that every feature in Blizzard's upcoming real-time strategy game Warcraft III will be cross-platform, including the "World Builder" editor.

While Blizzard has an impressive record of releasing editors along with the Mac versions of its games, including Warcraft II, it has always been a source of some frustration to Mac gamers that editors often fail to accompany games from other publishers to the Mac—especially given this platform's popularity among creative folks. Notable omissions in recent years have included the level editing tools for Quake III and Unreal Tournament, as well as the editing tools for the upcoming Neverwinter Nights, while the Civilization III editor is being ported to Mac OS X, but not to Mac OS 9.

There are often solid reasons for failing to port a game's editing tools: unlike the game itself, they may not have been designed to be cross-platform, instead being thrown together as quickly as possible for the internal use of the game's developer and later being released to the public only as an afterthought. Porting such haphazardly assembled, platform-specific code can take as much time and money as porting the game itself.

Nevertheless, in cross-platform games where the editing tools have also been released for the Mac, like Bungie's Myth and Myth II, the creative strength of the Mac community has yielded impressive third-party content that only adds to the value of those games.

For the MP3 of the brief interview (which is in English), head over to our Italian friends via the link below. For more information about the the Warcraft III World Builder, a list of answers to frequently-asked questions is available at Blizzard's web site.

IMG Preview: WarCraft III
Blizzard: WarCraft III World Builder FAQ
games4mac: Q&A con Bill Roper
WarCraft III
Buy WarCraft III

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Wolfenstein Pre-Orders Ship Today!
10:54 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Aspyr's Return to Castle Wolfenstein pre-orders through the Inside Mac Games store are shipping as of today. If you're a MacGames CD subscriber and have pre-ordered your copy, expect the game to arrive within the next few days. If you haven't ordered it yet, you can pre-order Return to Castle Wolfenstein for just $44.

System Requirements:

  • Mac OS 9.2 or later with virtual memory active, or
  • Mac OS X, version 10.1 or later
  • Power Mac G3/G4/iMac (Flat-Panel or later)/PowerBook G4 (Gigabit Ethernet or later)
  • 500 MHz or faster processor
  • 128 MB of RAM (256 MB under Mac OS X)
  • Graphics Acceleration Required (ATI Radeon, Nvidia GeForce or later)

You are B. J. Blazkowicz, a highly decorated Army Ranger recruited into the Office of Secret Actions (OSA) tasked with escaping and then returning to Castle Wolfenstein in an attempt to thwart Heinrich Himmler's occult and genetic experiments. Himmler believes himself to be a reincarnation of a 10th-century dark prince, Henry the Fowler, also known as Heinrich. Through genetic engineering and the harnessing of occult powers, Himmler hopes to raise an unstoppable army to level the Allies once and for all.

The MacGames CD is a CD-ROM subscription service featuring the best in Macintosh game demos, shareware, updates, add-ons, trailers, cheaters and much more. Get eight issues per year (delivered every six weeks) and save big bucks! For a limited time, when you subscribe to the MacGames CD, you can get a full version of Aliens vs Predator, Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2, Deus Ex, or Escape From Monkey Island; all you pay is the shipping ($5 USA, $7 Canada, $12 International). Each subscription or renewal also includes free registration of the shareware game guide Game Doctor, plus great discounts from Mac game stores and publishers. For more information, please visit the IMG Web Store.

IMG Preview: Return to Castle Wolfenstein
Return to Castle Wolfenstein
Westlake Interactive
Buy Return to Castle Wolfenstein

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Otto Matic, Reckless Drivin' Updated
9:38 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

Two Mac games have recently received updates that, interestingly enough, address the same problem. First on the block is Pangea Software's action-adventure hit, Otto Matic. The update, which brings it to version 1.2.1, fixes a crashing problem on older, non-USB Macs, such as old G3s.

The second title, the shareware car-driving action game, Reckless Drivin', also received an update that fixes a bug that caused the game to crash on non-USB Macs, bringing it to version 1.42.

Curiously, each game's crashing bug seems to have been introduced at the same time as support for force-feedback with the MacAlly iShock II gamepad.

The Reckless Drivin' update, sized at 5.4 MB, can be found at the game's web site. The Otto Matic update, as well as an updated demo, are available at our sister site, MacGameFiles.

IMG Review: Otto Matic
Otto Matic
Reckless Drivin'
MGF: Otto Matic 1.2.1 Demo (24.8 MB)
MGF: Otto Matic 1.2.1 Update (536 KB)

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Tactical Ops Retail Shipping for PC
9:38 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

Blue's News has spotted a new press release from Infogrames announcing the retail release for the PC of the extremely popular modification Tactical Ops: Assault on Terror.

This large mod for Unreal Tournament stirred up no small controversy with Mac fans when it was revealed that the boxed version would be PC-only, despite the fact that it should run perfectly well on the Mac. While the Tac Ops team has said publicly they are legally unable to release a Mac installer, many fans have promised to create one as soon as the full version arrives. Here's the scoop on what's in the game:

Tactical Ops: Assault on Terror challenges players to battle as a member of Special Forces or as a Terrorist through a wide variety of mission objectives, including rescuing hostages, destroying strategic targets and eliminating the other team. The game features more than 30 hyper-realistic maps, an arsenal of more than 20 devastating real-world weapons, more than 11 reinvented character models and skins and a completely revamped GUI and menu system.

Using Unreal technology, Tactical Ops: Assault on Terror brings the existing "Tac Ops" community improved textures, redesigned maps, revamped character skins and weapons, improved code and several all new locations. The wildly popular modification for Unreal Tournament has been reconstructed to create an remarkable stand-alone squad-based first person shooter.

It will be interested to see how this mod-gone-retail does in the market. We'll also keep an eye out for any Mac installers that pop up to bring the PC version to Apple's hardware.

Blue's News: Tac Ops Shipping
Unreal Tournament

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Unreal Tournament 2003 Previewed at Games Radar
9:38 AM | Richard Porcher | Comment on this story

Games Radar recently posted a detailed preview of the next installment in the venerated Unreal franchise, Unreal Tournament 2003. The preview contains much of what has already been stated in countless other articles on the subject, but there are enough interesting bits of info here to make this preview a must-read for fans of the shooter series.

Much like it's predecessor, Unreal Tournament 2003 is a multiplayer-focused game, with a single-player mode that uses computer-controlled opponents, known as 'bots, to simulate a multiplayer experience.

The PC version of Unreal Tournament 2003 is scheduled for release in June. While word a Mac version has not yet been announced, considering the past success of the Unreal games on the Mac and recent statements made by Mark Rein of Epic Games, a Mac port of Unreal Tournament 2003 seems highly likely.

Here is a bit of what the preview has to offer:

The levels that we saw in action are far sharper than those of the game's predecessor, Unreal Tournament: in fact, co-developers Epic Games claim that the new game is around 150 to 200 times more detailed than UT. Particularly impressive were the lighting and particle effects. Conditions such as snow, lightning and smoke all look absolutely stunning. Even the clouds look good.

There was an impressive variety in the environments we saw, some of which are 'inspired' by the more popular levels from UT but most of which are brand new. So, there's everything from multi-level deserted warehouses; lush valleys; a series of overlapping tracks suspended in the sky that looked like something out of futuristic PlayStation racer Wipeout to rural scenery packed with trees (dead, of course), waterfalls and the loveliest-looking grass this side of Halo.

Pay a visit to Games Radar to read the preview in its entirety. There's quite a bit to digest.

GamesRadar: Unreal Tournament 2003 Preview
Digital Extremes
Buy Unreal Tournament 2003

Mac Games News for Tuesday, April 23, 2002

Apple Posts WingNuts Trailer4:02 PM
MacGamer Interviews Beenox's Dee Brown2:15 PM
Bubble Trouble X at Beta 71:30 PM
Beenox Unveils The VATZ; Mac Info6:00 AM
Lineage's LinWeb Service Upgraded6:00 AM
Neverwinter Nights PC Beta Begins6:00 AM
Sid Meier Chat Video Available6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, April 23, 2002 on one page

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