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Tuesday, June 4, 2002

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Escape Velocity Nova 1.0.1 Released
11:50 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

B>Ambrosia Software has announced the release of the first official 1.0.1 patch for their very popular space strategy title Escape Velocity Nova. This upgrade makes a huge list of changes and tweaks to the gameplay, as well as adding a few new features. Also interesting to note is that Ambrosia has now created a progress log for the Windows port of Escape Velocity Nova, which is being handled by Contraband Entertainment.

For a long list of the changes made in 1.0.1, check out the recent posts to the progress logs for the Mac version. Here are the official installation instructions from the ReadMe:

To properly upgrade EV Nova from version 1.0.0 to version 1.0.1, you must drag all of the files that are in the "put in EV Nova folder" folder into your existing EV Nova folder. You must then drag all of the files that are in the "put in Nova Files folder" folder into your existing Nova Files folder (which is in your EV Nova folder).

Pilot files from previous versions of EV Nova will work with EV Nova 1.0.1, however, if you ran into a situation that left your pilot stranded in 1.0.1, you WILL need to start a new pilot with this version.

Head over to Macgamefiles now and start downloading the relatively large (9MB) patch. Or if you're one of the few who hasn't yet tried out the Nova demo, an updated 75MB 1.0.1 demo is also available.

Ambrosia Software
Escape Velocity: Nova
Escape Velocity Nova Progress Logs
Download Escape Velocity Nova 1.0.1 Update (9.7MB)
Download Escape Velocity Nova Demo (75MB)

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The Sims: Hot Date Goes Gold
4:15 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

The golden master's keep on coming in! Aspyr Media is the latest to announce another game that has gone gold; The Sims Hot Date. In an email to IMG, Aspyr said they don't have a concrete day for when the product will ship, but they expect it will "likely be in a few days."

Here's more about The Sims Hot Date:

Whether you wine and dine or crash and burn, get into the romantic swing of things. Play matchmaker for your Sims and see if the sparks fly or fizzle. Get them out of the house and into the all-new downtown area complete with shops, restaurants, parks and a beach, where they'll gossip over a candlelit dinner, buy gifts for their dates, or just cruise the strip in hopes of getting lucky.

There are over 40 new one-on-one interactions. With brand new characters to meet and date, like the Dream Boat, Lounge Lizard and Femme Fatale, and over 125 new items, including a picnic basket, cuddle couch and Lover's Swing, the stage is set for the ultimate romantic interlude! Will your Sims find true love or be destined to a lifetime membership to the lonely hearts club?

The final system requirements for The Sims Hot Date are as follows:

  • Mac OS 8.6, 9, 10 or later
  • 128 MB built-in memory (Virtual Memory may be necessary on machines with less than 192 MB Physical Memory)
  • G3 processor with 233 MHz or faster (333 MHz recommended)
  • ATI Rage Pro, NVidia GeForce 2 -4 MB video memory
  • 600 MB storage space
  • 8x CD-ROM drive

    For more on The Sims Hot Date, be sure to check out our preview!

    IMG Preview: The Sims Hot Date
    Aspyr Media
    Westlake Interactive
    The Sims: Hot Date
    Buy The Sims: Hot Date

    US Army Games for Free
    4:01 PM | Vern Xiong | Comment on this story

    Chris Morris from CNN and Money Magazine comments on the US Army's presence at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) and their intent on investing money into games that would reach the video game crowd, one of the largest growing populations of young adults, for training and recruiting.

    The games will be published under the label, America's Army, with each title budgeted around 7 million dollars each. While that's not too terribly expensive compared to other games out there today, it's still in the high end part of the ball park. The main issue here is that the US Army will be releasing it for free.

    Some feel that the Army may be spending too much on the development of these games, but Morris commends them from at least knowing who their target audience is. It's young adults who are more and more drawn to videogames these days, than they are to joining the army.

    CNN/Money - Your Tax Dollars at Play

    MacGames CD Free Game Offers Updated
    2:06 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

    From time to time we've updated the "free game" offer that comes with every subscription to the MacGames CD. Today we've updated the free game offer with four fantastic titles: Star Trek Voyager: Elite Force, Tomb Raider: Chroicles, Rune and Heavy Metal F.A.K.K 2.

    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 8 issues per year (delivered every 6 weeks) and save big bucks! For a limited time, when you subscribe to MacGames CD, you can get a full version of one of eight games; 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.

    If you're already a MacGames CD subscriber and would like to purchase some of these games, we'll be updating the store shortly. This offer is only open for MacGames CD subscribers.

    For more information, be sure to visit the IMG web store.

    Inside Mac Games

    Mac Hall Returns With New Comic
    1:39 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

    After a brief one month hiatus, the kids at Mac Hall are back with a new comic, this time paying tribute to Aspyr's recently released first-person shooter, Return to Castle Wolfenstein.

    Here's a snippet from blurb accompanying the comic:

    In our offering today Ian would like to bring to your attention the strange idiosyncracies of the second world war, such as the unexplained connection between fascism and poultry; and early German experiments in buttock augmentation. You'd best just take a look-see.
    Be sure to check out the comic by clicking on the Mac Hall comic below.

    Mac Hall: Return to Basics

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    IMG Previews Clive Barker's Undying
    12:59 PM | IMG News | Comment on this story

    IMG has posted a preview by Richard Hallas of Clive Barker's Undying, the upcoming horror game from Aspyr Media. Here's an excerpt:

    The plot is set in Ireland, a few years after the First World War, and centres on the ancestral estate of the Covenant family. Only one of five brothers and sisters, Jeremiah Covenant, remains alive, but the deceased family members seem to refuse to remain buried. Fearing for his own life, the ailing Jeremiah calls in his friend, Patrick Galloway, to help rid his estate of the ancient curse which has befallen his family.

    You play the part of Patrick Galloway. It is your job to track down and lay to rest the animated remains of Jeremiah's siblings, who seem intent on forcing their brother to join them in death. Background information is provided in the form of diary entries concerning each family member. Lizbeth, the youngest daughter, was a beautiful girl who died at age seventeen. Aaron was a talented artist with a deeply disturbed and twisted vision who painted horrific images of monsters. Bethany became deeply interested in the arcane, studying ancient texts with the occultist, Count Otto Keisinger, and she also nurtured something strange in the greenhouse. Ambrose became an extremely cruel and violent young man who gained a reputation for being unbeatable in any fight. Jeremiah, the eldest brother, is the only Covenant left alive at the start of the game, and it emerges that he was unwittingly responsible for the curse that has befallen his family, having conjured up evil through an incantation at some standing stones near the Covenant estate....

    For our full preview and a gallery of screen shots, follow the link below.

    IMG Preview: Clive Barker's Undying
    Clive Barker's Undying
    Westlake Interactive
    Buy Clive Barker's Undying

    Bejeweled and Alchemy Go Gold
    12:05 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

    MacPlay today announced that the Mac versions of PopCap’s popular puzzle games, Bejeweled and Alchemy have gone gold and have been released for manufacturing.

    Here's more from the official press release:

    Bejeweled, enjoyed over 17 million times online, is a fast paced gem-matching puzzle that will keep players coming back again and again. Players swap gems on the board to align at least 3 gems in a row, either horizontally or vertically, to collect points and make the collection disappear while more gems fall into place. In Alchemy, the player is a wizard who must transform the ordinary into the invaluable in this addictive, brain-tickling puzzle. The ancient art of alchemy involves the transformation of worthless metals into glittering gold. Throughout history, most have failed, but stories have materialized of mystical wizards who discovered the secrets of this ancient art.

    “The great thing about Bejeweled and Alchemy is that even if you have the Palm™ version, you will still want to own Bejeweled and Alchemy for your Mac. The games are so addictive you will want a copy for every machine you own,” said Henry Price, Director of Sales and Marketing at MacPlay.

    The Macintosh version is even more fun than the online version with loads of new features, new sound effects and music, completely new game modes and spectacular high-resolution graphics.

    Both games will ship as a bundle to retail with an MSRP of $19.99 and are available for purchase at the MacPlay store.


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    Lineage Episode 11 Media
    11:50 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

    New movies, screen shots, and information have been released about NCsoft's next free Episode 11 update for Lineage: the Blood Pledge. This MMORPG for OS X will be updated with a new chilly area called Oren. A number of gameplay changes will also be made, along with new spells, items, and monsters.

    While it's been said that a large list of graphical updates will be in the following (12th) update, it seems Episode 11 will also get better animations for the characters. The newly revamped Lineage web site now has three QuickTime movies from E3 showing off the "smoother animation." It you were put off by the current game's choppier style, definitely head over and give the new movies a look.

    The official site also has a small new section showing off some new monsters and screen shots of Episode 11. The quick preview does require the Flash 6 plugin, so be sure to grab that small download from Macromedia if you haven't already done so. The section is linked from the main page of the Lineage web site.

    Lastly fan site Lineage WarCry (popup ad warning) has the scoop on the new spells and stats, including two screen shots of every spell becoming available. Head over and have a look if you're interested. As with all of their updates, Episode 11 will be completely free to all registered players of Lineage.

    Lineage Smoother Animation Videos
    Lineage Warcry

    Mac Games News for Monday, June 3, 2002

    The Gamesome Mac Talks with MacPlay4:03 PM
    Medal of Honor: Allied Assault Goes Gold2:59 PM
    GarageGames June Newsletter Released1:15 PM
    GeForce4 Ti / G4 Dual 1 GHz Combo Tested12:57 PM
    Harpoon3 Update, Harpoon4 Pics12:57 PM
    IMG Moves to New Web Server12:57 PM
    Tomb Raider Q&A12:57 PM
    View all of the Mac games news for Monday, June 3, 2002 on one page

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