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Friday, January 17, 2003

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GarageGames Releases Marble Blast, Demo
8:17 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

GarageGames has released the Mac version of their highly acclaimed title, Marble Blast. The Mac demo features five playable levels and access to several of the game's power up items. The full version of Marble Blast, available at GarageGames' website for $14.95, includes 72 levels, a variety of power up bonuses and additional hazards.

Marble Blast is an arcade action game with simple yet addictive gameplay, suitable for players of any age. In the rich cartoon landscape of Marble Blast, players will race their marbles through moving platforms, dangerous hazards, sparkling treasures and power up enhancements in an effort to complete each course in record time.

Here's more from the official press release on the release:

"Marble Blast looks so sweet on OS X and this game was made with the Mac in mind,? comments Mark Frohnmayer, the Marble Blast project lead. ?Being able to bring our first Mac game out from the Torque Game Engine only five weeks after the Windows version launched is a very exciting."

"The response we got from gamers at MacWorld was a resounding 'Wow'. So much fun, so colorfully animated and so addictive, no one believed it was less than 20 MB and only $14.95." said Jay Moore, Evangelist for GarageGames, "Mac users appreciated the Blast lines non-violent content and family fun and the number of comments around how many people want games that they can play with all their friends and family guilt free was very interesting."

MarbleBlast requires the following:

  • Macintosh OS X (version 10.1 or greater)
  • G4 Processor Recommended
  • 64 MB RAM
  • OpenGL Compatible 3D Graphics Accelerator

    Our sister site,, is hosting the demo. Be sure to head over there to download the 11 MB demo.

    Marble Blast Gold
    MGF: Marble Blast Demo
    Buy Marble Blast Gold

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    IMG Reviews Heroes of Might & Magic IV
    2:08 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

    Inside Mac Games has posted a review of 3DO's recently released strategy/rpg, Heroes of Might & Magic IV.

    Here's a clip from the review:

    The series is a fantasy turn-based strategy game where you begin with one hero and a town, which serves as your base. You travel across a map – or, in the case of a campaign, a series of maps – and gather resources, unearth powerful artifacts, conquer other towns, and vanquish monsters and opposing heroes. Your hero gains experience through combat, which will give your hero more power and skills. Gathering resources like wood and mercury allows you to upgrade your towns into formidable fortresses and build even bigger armies to annihilate your foes. While some games are won by completing a quest or meeting other criteria, more often than not you win through pure might by conquering all the enemy towns and heroes.

    HoMMIII was an excellent refinement of the series-- the game’s producers refined an already great series. With 6 campaigns, 24 scenarios, 11 hero classes, 27 skills and 66 different creatures, HoMMVI looks to be just more of the same— not a bad thing, since HoMMIII was arguably the best in the series. HoMMIV was hailed as a predecessor that fans of the series would be familiar with, but a game that was going to see a few major changes. Did 3DO succeed?

    For more, be sure to check out the entire review.

    IMG Review: Heroes of Might & Magic IV
    Contraband Entertainment
    Heroes of Might & Magic IV
    Buy Heroes of Might & Magic IV

    GameDoctor 2.0.1 Released
    12:37 PM | IMG News | Comment on this story

    Today, Inside Mac Games released Game Doctor 2.0.1, the largest collection of hints, cheats, walkthroughs, and other game enhancements (called "prescriptions") available for the Macintosh.

    Here are a few of the program's features:

  • Over 1000 prescriptions, with more to follow!
  • Over 100 game patches not available anywhere else.
  • More than ten prescription types, including:
  • Text prescriptions with embedded sounds, pictures, files, and Internet links.
  • Patch prescriptions that automatically locate and duplicate the target file.
  • Progressive Walkthrough prescriptions that use the Universal Hint System.
  • An open architecture that lets anyone create prescriptions using simple, intuitive editors.
  • Automatic compression for smaller prescription files.
  • Direct links to game publishers from within prescriptions.
  • Comprehensive online help and help balloons.
  • Commercial look and feel at a shareware price.

    Game Doctor is available either as a full download or, for those with slower Internet connections, as a smaller download without the strategy guides and walkthoughs. A Game Doctor registration is $10 and can be ordered through our online store. Game Doctor registration is also included if you subscribe to the MacGames CD.

    For current users of the program, a January '03 update is also available to grab and import into your current list of prescriptions. This update contains new prescriptions for recently released Mac games.

    The January '03 update is only needed for users with an older version of Game Doctor. Those downloading the full version 2.0.1 will get all of these prescriptions included. Head over to our sister site MacGameFiles to begin downloading.

    Game Doctor 2.0.1
    Game Doctor January '03 Update

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    Master of Orion Preview, Part II
    9:41 AM | Mike Apps | Comment on this story

    The fan site for turn-based strategy games such as Civilization 3 and Alpha Centauri, Apolyton, recently posted the second part of their in-depth preview of the upcoming space strategy game, Master of Orion III. This second preview mainly focuses on the many different customization options available in the game. Some of these include being able to set the size of the galaxy for the game, the amount of biodiversity, and even setting how mineral rich planets will be.

    Here's a sample of the preview:

    The “Random Event Generator” is the first component of the 'Start New Game' screen. Any race can be targeted for a random event so choosing the frequency of their occurrence will not only impact your but all civilizations. To that end, some random events affect all races although certainly the practicality of its impact will vary from race-to-race. These self-explanatory occurrences always lead off your 'SitRep' reports, which will be discussed in greater detail in Part 4 of this preview. We now come to the frequency aspect which is what you have at your disposal to control to a certain extent. In my game of Master of Orion III, I kept the level of random events at Normal. In the eighty-four turns that I saw come and go, just three came to pass. In these instances each one of them directly impacted my race only and all had positive intent and effect. I will look at each of these a little more closely in Part 4 as well. The Normal designation suggests the presence of Rare and Frequent also, and it is true on both accounts.

    The “Difficulty” settings come in a trio: Easy, Medium and Hard. I admit I chose the first setting for my game, but remember I am just getting into the MoO of things (and pardon this terrible pun)! “Number of Computer Players” is an even less ambiguous setting. The range runs from one through fifteen. For me, I chose '8'… yes, the default value again. As for “Specials”, they are described in the game's manual as “galactic anomalies, such as solar winds, wormholes, black holes, and ancient space dust debris that can affect the galaxy and combat in a certain way for a random number of turns” (MoO3 Manual (Page 34) ). Although labeled differently than that of the “Random Event Generator”, the modes for this part of the game set-up are similarly Fewer, Average and More.

    Master of Orion III is currently being developed for both Mac and PC by Quicksilver, with the Mac version to be published by MacSoft. The game is currently in late beta stages, so watch IMG for more info as the game nears release. To read the full preview, follow the link below

    MOO3 Preview, Part II
    Quicksilver Software
    Master of Orion III
    Buy Master of Orion III

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    DanLab Games Post Quicktime 6.1 Fixes
    8:17 AM | Jean-Luc Dinsdale | Comment on this story

    French Macintosh game developer DanLab Games has recently posted updates to all their games, addressing the Quicktime 6.1 update issue reported earlier this week.

    The "black screen" problem is caused by Apple updating their full screen mode API, the low-level technology which controls how video and graphics behave on your computer. As of version 6.1, QuickTime now creates its blanking layer on a different video layer than it had previously. The end result is that when a program calls for full screen control, the screen fades to black, but then does not display anything further.

    DanLab's software are not the only pieces of software that fell prey to this problem - as of press time, Zonic is working to update Feral Interactive and MacPlay's releases of Black & White and F1 Championship Season 2000.

    DanLab Games' four shareware games Creepy Mines, Owari, Froggy's Songs and Twin's Cards, all written in TNT Basic, have all been updated to address this and some other minor issues. Click on the links below to download the new versions.

    DanLab Games Updates
    DanLab Games

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    Custer Saves the Day
    8:17 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

    Resident Mac desktop guru Brad Custer has updated Custer's Desktops, a weekly feature at IMG that allows users to download high quality desktop pictures featuring some of today's hottest Mac games. Custer's latest creation features artwork from Macplay's Freedom Force, and is titled "Fireball". Here's a brief description from the man himself:

    This great title from MacPlay has been a lively topic in my email. The last time I made a desktop for Freedom Force I focused on an individual hero and that was obviously very popular. I've been getting requests for all the cast from this game, but El Diablo seems to be leading the pack in the popularity race. Again I tried to capture the Silver Age feel of the official desktops with the help of the art CDs from MacPlay, my own illustrator art and the internet. I simply entitled it "Fireball" and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did making it. :)
    The picture is available in many different resolutions, ranging from 640x480 to 1920x1200. If you'd like to try it on for size, be sure to check out the Custer's Desktops section of IMG, and check out the links below for more information on Freedom Force, including our exclusive preview,

    Freedom Force is also available from IMG's very own online store.

    Custer's Desktops: Fireball
    IMG Preview: Freedom Force
    Freedom Force
    Buy Freedom Force

    PlayMyth Server Move
    8:17 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story, the third party project to bring the multiplayer community back to Myth II: Soulblighter, has announced that the PlayMyth servers will be moving onto a new ISP sometime today, January 17th. Users will need to download a new version of the PlayMyth plugin in order to continue playing, and the developers have made it very clear that they will need to do so before January 18th or they will not be able to play on the servers. Besides fixing the server issues, the new plugin version also fixes Mac-oriented problems, as well as provides Mac users with an easy to use installer application. Here's the full announcement from PlayMyth's website:

    Sometime during the day on Friday, January 17th, the server will be moving to a new ISP. This means you will need a new Myth 2 Plugin! OH JOY! I know we just switched plugins, but this should be the last time we update plugins for quite some time.

    This plugin also fixes a few bizarre mac things on some people's machines...... the mac version now also has a custom installer similar to the one for the PC to make installing things a lot easier.

    You MUST HAVE THIS PLUGIN INSTALLED BY JANUARY 18th, 2003 OR YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO LOGIN TO THE GAME SERVER. Just to make this download a bit more of a must have. You may wish to wait until the existing server closes before installing the new plugin ... doing so could leave you waiting to log on to the new game server which will be live sometime Friday.
    You can download the new plugin for Mac from the link below. For instructions on signing up to the PlayMyth service, be sure to check out the official website.

    Download: PlayMyth Mac Plugin

    Slope Rider QT6.1 Fix
    8:17 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

    Continuing the list of patches coming out that address Quicktime 6.1 compatibility problems, Monte Boyd interactive has released an updated version of Slope Rider, bringing it up to version 1.0.2.

    For those unfamiliar with the title, Slope Rider is a snowboarding game that allows for trick combos off of jumps, rails, and half-pipes. Players who tire of the provided courses can also create their own with the included terrain editor.

    Those interested in downloading the latest version can find it at MacGameFiles.

    MGF - Slope Rider 1.0.2

    Mac Games News for Thursday, January 16, 2003

    IMG Reviews The JBL Creatures12:33 PM
    MacPlay: Soldier of Fortune II 1.03 Patch Soon11:34 AM
    Happy Gear 2.6 Released9:35 AM
    RedLine Progress Update9:35 AM
    RtCW 1.41 Beta Patch Released [Update]9:35 AM
    Shadowbane Team Grows9:35 AM
    SMS Plus v1.0 Released9:35 AM
    Tropico 2 Preview Released at Gamespot9:35 AM
    View all of the Mac games news for Thursday, January 16, 2003 on one page

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