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Monday, November 4, 2002

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Jedi Knight II Demo Released
6:00 AM | Lucian Fong | Comment on this story

Hot on the heels of shipping Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast to retailers, Aspyr Media has released a demo to Mac gamers who have been craving lightsaber action. According to LucasArts' JK2 website, the demo contains a level that is not found in the retail game. You'll have access to five different weapons (including your lightsaber) and various Force Powers. Here are the system requirements taken from the readme:

MacOS 9.0 or later, or MacOS X 10.1 or later.
A PowerPC Macintosh, 333MHz G3/G4 or better.
128 Megabytes of free memory
CarbonLib 1.4 or later (MacOS 9 only)
DrawSprocket 1.7 or later (MacOS 9 only)
A video card with 32M of VRAM and support for OpenGL
The readme also notes several known issues and tips on how to enable full scene anti-aliasing (FSAA) on NVIDIA and ATI graphics cards. Owners of ATI graphics cards (OEM or retail) should download the October 2002 update. Before contacting Aspyr support or seeking help in the IMG forums, please read the included documentation. For more information on Jedi Knight II, read our detailed preview. Stay tuned to IMG for a full review of the game. [Reposted from Friday night's news]

Download Jedi Knight 2 Demo (67 MB)
IMG Preview: Jedi Knight 2
Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast
Aspyr Media
Westlake Interactive
Buy Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast

Shadowbane Bard Travel Guide
1:15 PM | Mike Apps | Comment on this story

A new article was recently posted on Ubi Soft's Shadowbane web site entitled, "The Aerynthian Codex, A Bard's Travel Guide." For those unfamiliar with Shadowbane, it is a massively multiplayer online RPG which takes a new approach to the genre, focusing on such aspects as city-building and wars between factions of players.

While not providing info on Shadowbane's gameplay, the article provides a look into the game's storyline from the perspective of one if its characters. Here's a sample:

Aerynth has much changed since the Turning, the shattering of the world has brought chaos to the routes of old. People have forgotten the lore of the land, and the events that have transpired prior to the Age of Strife. Many kingdoms that have been engulfed by the winds of change lay forgotten in hidden dales, earthly paradises have been lost, and many new stories have too often gone unseen, or unheard, by the rest of Aerynth. Too many brave souls have met their doom at the hand of ignorance as they journey into lost settlements that have been overtaken by chaotic creatures.

It is for this reason that I have asked several Soerbairds of the College of Heralds to gather all information, both new and old, on the lands in which they travel. With this information, we shall compile their notes into a codex so that knowledge will flow once again. I believe this undertaking be best suited to the Bardic Order of the College since, contrary to the Heralds who observe the major events of the worlds, the bards are already journeying throughout the fragments in search of lost lore, song, and an ear willing to listen to a tale or two.

Shadowbane is being developed by Wolfpack Studios, and will be published by Ubi Soft for both the Mac and PC. Be sure to watch IMG for more info as the game comes closer to release.

Shadowbane Bard Travel Guide
Wolfpack Studios

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IMG Talks Neverwinter Nights with BioWare
1:15 PM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

IMG has posted a new interview with Bioware, makers of many acclaimed RPG titles, including the impending Mac release of Neverwinter Nights. A number of different company employees contributed to the Q&A, which covers a variety of topics surrounding developing Neverwinter Nights for Mac OS X, the response to the game on the PC side, and even some early Mac system requirements. Here is an excerpt about developing games for cross-platform compatibility:

IMG: What do your programmers do that makes it easier to port a title to other platforms?

AG, DF: Good programming practices always make porting easier. Since Neverwinter Nights was planned from the beginning to be available for multiple platforms, platform-dependent functionality was kept separate from core game functionality.

IMG: Im sure this has been asked a dozen times, but will player-created mods be cross-platform or platform agnostic?

JW: The modules created by our fan community will be functional on a Mac platform. It would be a tremendous shame if our Mac fans could not participate in the vast Neverwinter Nights community and get to experience some of the best work being done out there by talented people.

Check out the rest of the interview for much more from the company. As reported earlier today, the Mac client for Neverwinter Nights is progressing nicely, with most major systems in place and in-game play now possible. Stay tuned to IMG for the latest on the Mac version of Neverwinter Nights as it becomes available.

IMG Talks with Bioware
Neverwinter Nights
Buy Neverwinter Nights

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Quake 3 1.32 Final Released
10:05 AM | Lucian Fong | Comment on this story

After five test versions of the 1.32 patch for Quake III: Arena, id programmer Graeme Devine worked out the kinks and released the final version over the weekend. He lists the changes made since the first test build in his latest .plan update

Punkbuster support (installer included)
F13 key brings down console for international keyboards
NSEvent event timing added for keyboard/mouse events
Optional IN_ cvar for mouse scaling to avoid Mac OS X bug
larger default zone/hunk memory for mods
vm compiler provides full jump/branch support for all mods
support for 11khz sound (non-default) for speed
keyboard repeat rate left untouched on exit
Gameranger launch support
Numpad support added / French numpad support added
The PunkBuster files are contained in a package file in the Quake 3 directory and must be installed separately. Hopefully with the release of PunkBuster for Quake 3, MacPlay's Soldier of Fortune 2 will also be updated to support the anti-cheating software.

Download Quake 3 1.32 Point Release (28 MB)
Quake III Arena
id Software
Buy Quake III Team Arena

Bungie on The Gamesome Mac Tonight
8:34 AM | Sean Smith | Comment on this story

Tonight on The Gamesome Mac, the weekly Mac gaming radio program, hosts Sean Smith and Omaha Sternberg talk with Matt Soell of Bungie Studios.

Bungie have developed such phenomenally successful and critically acclaimed games as the Marathon series, Myth and Myth II, and the long-awaited Halo. Among other topics, tonight's conversation will touch on Bungie's Mac roots, their move from Chicago to Redmond, the Mac version of Halo, and the upcoming Halo 2.

Sean and Omaha will also offer Mac gaming news, commentary, and reviews, and together with their guest will take questions from listeners and give away some great games in The Gamesome Mac's live chat room.

The Gamesome Mac can be heard on Mondays from 6 to 8 pm Pacific Time, 9 to 11 pm Eastern (Tuesdays at 0200 UTC) on You can tune in live at The Gamesome Mac's web page, where you'll also find complete archives of past broadcasts. QuickTime 5 or 6 and a 28 kbps or faster Internet connection are required.

Bungie Studios

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Links CE 1.0.4 Update
6:00 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

Fans of Bold's popular golf simulation Links Championship Edition should be pleased to hear that an update has been recently released, bringing Links CE up to version 1.0.4. The patch includes the long-awaited Links Course Converter package as well as various bug fixes.

Those interested in downloading the patch, which is sized at around 2MB, can find it at both Bold's Links CE technical support page and at MacGameFiles. It requires a retail copy of Links CE.

For more details on Links CE itself, be sure to check out IMG's review.

Links CE Technical Support
MGF - Links Championship Edition 1.0.4
Links Championship Edition
IMG - Links Championship Edition
Buy Links Championship Edition

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Neverwinter Nights Status Update
6:00 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

BioWare recently updated their Neverwinter Nights page with a status update regarding the long-awaited Mac version. The latest blurb notes progress being made with issues regarding saved games and lighting:

This week we have resolved a few problems with saved games, and fixed oddities with buttons and text fields in the game. Some lighting issues were tracked down as well that had been making things look kind of odd up to this point.
Also posted alongside the update are screenshots of the Mac version in development. The four newest shots display in-game action not previously available, which proves good progress is being made.

Those interested in previous logs as well as the new screenshots can find all at BioWare's site.

BioWare - Neverwinter Nights: Mac Version
Neverwinter Nights
Buy Neverwinter Nights

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Jedi Knight II Tweak Guide
6:00 AM | Jean-Luc Dinsdale | Comment on this story

Given the number of posts on the IMG Forums regarding performance issues in the recently released game and demo of Aspyr Media's Star Wars Jedi Knight 2: Jedi Outcast, the staff here at IMG thought it may be wise to inform all aspiring Jedis of a tweak guide that will help you squeeze the most out of your system when playing JK2.

PC hardware resource center has posted an in-depth guide on tweaking JK2's in-game controls in order to acheive the best possible gameplay experience from any system. The guide covers a wide variety of graphical, sound, and gameplay options, and even answers some of the questions IMG forums members have been asking since Friday:

Anisotropic Filter: Anisotropic texture filtering is a high quality method for filtering textures. This provides significantly reduced texture aliasing & maintains texture sharpness over greater distances. The image quality difference is apparent enough & should your Graphics card support it Id highly recommend you enable it.
Although a number of options discussed in the article are PC-centric, most of the information provided within apply to the Mac port of the game as well.

For information that's more Mac-specific, readers can also check out the Jedi Outcast Performance Reports thread on IMG's very own forums, which has been a hotbed of activity since the JK2 demo was released Friday evening. Click on the links below for more information.

Techspot: JK2 Tweak Guide
IMG Forum: JK2 Performance Reports
Macgamefiles: Jedi Knight 2 Demo
Aspyr Media
Westlake Interactive
Raven Software
Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast
Buy Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast

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New Bugdom 2 Foreign Language Manuals
6:00 AM | Jean-Luc Dinsdale | Comment on this story

As previously reported on IMG, Pangea Software has recently released a Japanese version of the Bugdom 2 instruction manual. The manual, which is bundled with the Bugdom 2 1.0.2 update, is now also available as a seperate download, along with its Dutch counterpart.

Japanese and Dutch players will no doubt be glad to have the manuals available in their mother tongue. Click on the links below to download the manuals.

Bugdom 2 Japanes & Dutch Manuals
Macgamefiles: Bugdom 2 Download
Pangea Software
Bugdom 2
Buy Bugdom 2

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SimCity 4 Port Possibility?
6:00 AM | Mike Apps | Comment on this story

Fans of Maxis' popular city-building simulation series, SimCity, may be interested to know that a port of the latest game in the series, SimCity 4, may be a possibility. An IMG forum poster recently queried Maxis developers in a seperate messageboard at the Adrenalive Vault about the possibility of porting the game to Mac or Linux. Here was his reply:

Is there cross platform possibilities?
Yes. We are working on it right now. While I can't say it will absolutely happen it looks very possible.
While not a definite answer, it's certainly good to hear the game is being written in a way that would be condusive to porting to other platforms. Stay tuned to IMG for any new word on the possibility of seeing SimCity 4 on the Mac.

IMG Forums: SimCity 4 Port Possobility?
Avault Forums: Official SimCity 4 Developer's Chat
Buy SimCity 4

Mac Games News for Friday, November 1, 2002

IndieGamesCon Interview3:37 PM
Dragon's Lair 3D Preview3:36 PM
Quake 3 1.32 Test 5 Posted, Punkbuster Support Added3:11 PM
IMG Store: Jedi Knight II Now Shipping1:45 PM
IMG Reviews Soldier of Fortune II1:05 PM
Custer Shoots, He Scores!12:20 PM
GameRanger Adds Jedi Knight II Support9:15 AM
Essential Reality Talks Mac P5 Glove Support9:05 AM
FSAA Details in JK29:05 AM
Heroes IV in Duplication9:05 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Friday, November 1, 2002 on one page

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