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Wednesday, April 9, 2003

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ThinkTanks To Be Mac-First; Preview Posted
8:50 AM | Jean-Luc Dinsdale | Comment on this story

BraveTree Productions and GarageGames recently wrote IMG with word that their upcoming Torque Engine-based combat game ThinkTanks will be released first on the Mac.

ThinkTanks is a tank combat game geared towards the "casual gamer", and features a plot that is sure to amuse most sci-fi fans upon release later this month:

ThinkTanks are small armored vehicles that contain the brains of soldiers that were stolen by an alien race and placed in reinforced glass jars on top of the tank turrets. In arenas constructed to resemble earth, the aliens have pitted the disembodied soldiers against each other for their diabolical amusement.
Reminiscent of early Atari games, ThinkTanks features multiple tanks equipped with different performance attributes and weapons. Gameplay will take place in one of three different level types, each with varying degree of game intensity. Originally designed for online gameplay only, ThinkTanks will also feature a single player mode, where players will be pitted against a varying number of computer-controlled opponents. The game will also feature the ability to host games, with or without the assistance of computer-controlled bots.

According to Joe Maruschak, BraveTree's Creative Director, the game is being released on the Mac first in order to show the company's commitment to OS X. The game is rapidly approaching the "Final Candidate" stage, meaning the developers are feverishly at work squashing the final bugs, tweaking the game missions, and writing the final readme's.

GarageGames' evangelist Jay Moore expects the game to be released to the general public by the week of the 21st. Once released, the game will be available for sale through the GarageGames web store.

In related news, indie gaming website Do It Yourself Games has posted a two-page preview of the soon-to-be-released game:

The design of ThinkTanks may at first glance appear simple, however there is a depth to the gameplay that should keep you coming back time and time again. BraveTree has taken the time to refine each of the gameplay elements to ensure that the resulting experience is truly captivating. The tanks are balanced excellently so a player who masters the use of the heavy tank can be just as competitive as players who master the mid or light tanks.
Click on the links below to find out more. Be on the lookout for a preview of ThinkTanks on IMG soon.

IMG: ThinkTanks Up And Running In OS X
Garage Games: ThinkTanks to be Mac-OS First
ThinkTanks Preview At DIYGames
Buy ThinkTanks

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IMG Reviews Alida
12:28 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Inside Mac Games has posted a review of Alida, a Myst-inspired point and click interactive graphical adventure game by Australian game developers Dejavu Worlds. The game places players on the island of Alida, an island theme park built by a fictional band of the same name after the band gained notoriety from their first CD release.

Here's a clip from the review:

When Alida first arrived in my mailbox, I honestly expected very little. After all, the game was created by only one man; not an entire team of developers and artists. I didn't think that a solitary developer could create anything even remotely compelling, let alone something on par with Myst. Well, folks, I was wrong.
Be sure to check out the rest of the review by following the link below.

IMG Review: Alida
Dejavu Worlds

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Spearhead Reaches Final Candidate
10:58 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

Duane Johnson of Westlake Interactive recently posted a message in an IMG forum thread concerning the topic of the Medal of Honor: Spearhead multiplayer demo. While he makes a note of OS X optimizations, the main point of appeal in his message concerns Spearhead reaching Final Candidate status:

Folks, I've also found the cause for most of the speed hit in OSX. The full version has been fixed. I turned in final candidate 1 today. So if approvals don't turn into a "Wolfenstein", the reail should be out in the near future.
Spearhead is an expansion set to the popular World War II FPS title Medal of Honor. Players will find themselves in the shoes of Sgt. Jack Barnes, and will have access to a wealth of new levels, weapons, and enemies.

IMG Forum: Spearhead Reaches FC1
Aspyr Media
Westlake Interactive
Medal of Honor: Spearhead
MGF: Medal Of Honor Spearhead Demo (136MB)
Buy Medal of Honor: Spearhead

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Northland Announced for Mac
10:02 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Funatics Software and e.p.i.c. interactive today announced that they will be bringing Northland, an adventure-strategy game, to the Mac OS.

Here's more from the official press release:

"We are very happy to be able to bring one of the most popular Godgame series to gamers on the Apple Mac and MorphOS" said Thomas Steiding, CEO of e.p.i.c. about the deal.

Thomas Friedman, CEO of Funatics added: "e.p.i.c. is the ideal partner for us to bring "Northland" to an even larger audience. Unfortunately users of systems like Macintosh or the new MorphOS are poorly supported when it comes to innovative new games. We intend to fill this gap with the release of "Northland" for these platforms.

The story of "Northland" begins where the plot of "Cultures 2 - The Gates of Asgard" ended. After perilous adventures our four heroes defeated the Midgard serpent and thus saved the world. But one day they were disturbed by a call for help from their friend Hatschi. Hatschi's homeland was plagued by mysterious monstrous serpent creatures, which spread chaos and destruction through the country. Without hesitation Byjami and Crya hurried to help him and stumbled right into a new adventure, in which the sly god Loki will play an important role...

Here's a list of Northland's features:
  • Stand-alone Adventure Strategy game.
  • Single player campaign with 8 missions including several sub missions.
  • The exciting plots tells the story of Viking God Loki who tried to take revenge on Godfather Odin for his banishment from Asgard to Earth. For that he abuses our four human heroes with his intrigues and traps.
  • 8 additional free single player missions (non campaign).
  • 3 difficulty levels to make the game fun for everybody from beginners to experts.
  • Special effects like weather effects, fog, ghost units etc.
  • Based on the enhanced technology of "Cultures 2 - The Gates of Asgard"; enhanced AI.

    There's no word yet on when Northland will be released, but we'll be sure to keep you posted.


    IMG Store: Pre-Order SpyHunter
    9:38 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story

    The IMG Store is now taking pre-orders for Aspyr's SpyHunter. MGCD/IMG Pro subscribers can pre-order it for $27.95 while non-subscribers can pre-order it for just $29.95.

    The evil NOSTRA corporation prepares to unleash havoc on the world, and only the SpyHunter is equipped to stop them. Strapped behind the wheel of the powerful G-6155 Interceptor, you are the world's last chance! Utilizing an incredible arsenal of both offensive and defensive weapons, you must elude NOSTRA spies, henchmen and assassins at any cost if civilization is to be saved. Prepare to be hunted!

    Get behind the wheel of the G-6155 Interceptor for high-speed, mission-based racing in exotic locales. While operating your SpyHunter Interceptor, you are relentlessly pursued by hordes of air, ground and water enemies as you battle to accomplish your missions and save the world from the mind of a madman. Ultra-realistic 3D graphics, real-world locales and the only vehicle capable of morphing into a boat, jet ski or motorcycle. Explosive weaponry and impressive defensive mechanisms combine with intense speed and strategy to distinguish SpyHunter from routine combat racers and traditional action racing games.

    Preliminary System Requirements (These may change before the game release):

  • Mac OS X 10.2.4 or higher
  • 600 MHz G3 processor
  • 128 MB of RAM
  • 16 MB 3D video card
  • 750 MB HD space
  • 4xCD-ROM drive
  • Radeon 7500 / GeForce 2 class 3D hardware accelleration required

    To place your pre-order head over to the IMG Store.

    Aspyr Media

    Quake 3 Fortress 2.3 Due Soon
    8:50 AM | Mike Apps | Comment on this story

    After several long months with no updates, the Quake 3 Fortress Team has finally updated their website with news on the next update. For those who've never heard of Quake 3 Fortress (Q3F), its a popular total conversion for Quake 3, which turns the game into a class-based game where players can choose from characters such as a sniper or an explosives expert. The update provides some info on what will be in the next version, along with showing some screen shots of new maps that will be included.

    Here's the full update:

    Almost seven months after our last news update, we're finally able to bring you news and screenshots of Q3F 2.3! It will be packed with ten new and updated maps from BirdDawg's Level Design Team which has remained busy. Head on over to the Levels page by clicking right here, for screenshots and descriptions of the brand new levels!

    We hope to have a test build in the hands of Ghetto and our QA team with the next 1-2 weeks. The maps that are completely new to Q3F are Rock, Canalzone, Siege and Nocturne, while Smartbases 2, Chaos 3 and Sorrow have been ported from Beta 1H. Q3F 2.3 will also include updates to Cathedrals, Forts and Bases along with full PunkBuster support and a number of bug fixes.

    As if perfectly timed, we have also been nominated as 'Mod of the Month' for May 2003's issue of PC Gamer in the States, who said "Q3F takes teamplay to a whole new level".

    For more information on Q3F, or to download the latest version, follow the link provided below. For help getting Quake 3 Fortress up and running, follow the provided forum topic link.

    Quake 3 Fortress
    Q3F icon in the dock?
    id Software
    Quake III Arena

    Combat Mission: Afrika Corps Interview
    8:50 AM | Zack Lipowski | Comment on this story

    Recently HomeLanFed posted an interview with's president Martin Turewicz about their newly announced World War II-themed strategy expansion, Combat Mission: Afrika Corps. This standalone title will take the player to the Italian and Afrikan campaigns of the war.

    Among other things, new additions to the series include multi-gun tanks, 80MM AA guns, higher polygon counts and new particle effects for the desert battles. Returning is the "hybrid turn-based/real-time" system, where the player instructs his units, and they then carry them out in a 60 second real-time window. The same multiplayer will return in previous Combat Mission's, TCP/IP internet play, Hotseat or Play-by-email with a maximum of 2 players.

    Here's an excerpt from the interview:

    HomeLAN - Are there plans for future games in the Combat Mission series and if so what can you tell us about them?

    Martin Turewicz - After CMAK, we will finally move to the new engine, what we currently call CMX2. This will be a totally new engine, built from scratch, and will really bring the Combat Mission series to a new level, both in graphics and in the simulation detail. Even though work on this has already begun, we're still at least 1.5 years away from that.

    While Battlefront is looking to bring Afrika Korps to the Mac as well, the game's base engine unfortunately is incompatible with Mac OS X, even in "Classic" mode. The company's revised engine to be used in the Combat Mission sequel is being rewritten for OS X technologies, but won't be ready in time for an Afrika Korps release.

    Afrika Corps. Interview
    Combat Mission: Barbarossa to Berlin
    Combat Mission

    Myst Online Mac Port Delayed
    8:50 AM | Mike Apps | Comment on this story

    Fan's of Cyan's classic Myst series may be disappointed to hear that a Mac port of Myst Online is reportedly unsure at the moment. For those unfamiliar with the game, Myst Online is a Massively Multiplayer Online game based on the Myst universe, where players will no longer have to explore the many worlds alone.

    The Unofficial Riven home page is reporting that while Cyan is aggressively pursuing a Mac version, they currently lack the funding from publishers to guarantee they will be able to get it.

    Here's the full post from Jim Stephenson's fan page:

    Cyan has always been a big supporter of the Mac platform, but apparently they haven't received funding yet for a Mac version of URU. Richard Watson at Cyan posted this explanation at the DRC forums in January: "We want a Mac version. We're aggressively pushing for one. But we just don't have the commitments (mainly funding) that we need for it yet, so it isn't a sure thing."
    For more information on Myst Online, follow the provided links below. Be sure to stay tuned to IMG for more information on the possibility of a Mac port of Myst Online.

    Myst Online "URU" Unsure for Mac?
    Myst Online: Uru Live

    Reaction Quake 3 Mod Nears Completion
    8:50 AM | Jean-Luc Dinsdale | Comment on this story

    The development team responsible for bringing the popular Action Quake 2 mod to Quake 3 has recently announced that the new mod Reaction Quake 3 will soon be released.

    The mod, whose code was frozen last week, is currently in beta testing and is rapidly approaching release to the general public. Version 3 of the game, the first version not to be considered a beta, will feature 31 maps, a new Team Deathmatch gameplay mode, new skins, and a new skin-replacement mode, allowing players to skin their own characters.

    Once completed, the mod will be released during an official IRC release party in Reaction Quake 3's own IRC channel. Click on the link below and head over to the official website for more info, or to download the current 2.25 beta.

    Reaction Quake 3 Website

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    Myth II Mapmaking Contest
    8:50 AM | Johan HansÚn | Comment on this story

    The Alliance and Real Men have announced that, together with, the RMA Map Contest 2003 has now officially started. The goal of the contest is to make the best maps possible for Bungie's classic real-time strategy game Myth II: Soulblighter. This is also a way to get people to use the new mapmaking features coming with the 1.4 update of Myth II.

    Here's more information from the contest page:

    Basically, the Alliance and Real Men, in cooperation with, present to the Myth II community a large-scale mapmaking contest for both solo and multiplayer maps.

    With the upcoming release of Myth II 1.4 and its new unit/mapmaking capabilities, mapmakers will be able to pursue new and interesting ideas and turn them into spectacular maps. This contest is intended to revive the slumping mapmaking community and produce some quality maps for a revamped Myth II!

    Why now, you ask? Myth II 1.4 is going to revolutionize Myth II mapmaking. We give you this contest at this time so that you may harness this new power. Myth II 1.4 is scheduled to come out May 15th. This, you've got a little over a month to start planning your maps and start cmapping before you get your hands on the 1.4 tools.

    The competition will be open for entries until July 18th. Head over to the contest page for rules and to enter the competition.

    The 1.4 patch for Myth II: Soulblighter is being done by Project Magma in association with MythDevelopers. If you want more information about what will change in version 1.4, head over to Project Magma's site.

    RMA Mapmaking Contest 2003
    Bungie Studios
    Myth II: Soulblighter
    Project Magma

    Mac Games News for Tuesday, April 8, 2003

    IMG Previews Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne12:30 PM
    World War II Online Updated8:23 AM
    Apple Profiles Worms Blast6:00 AM
    Beenox Comments on THPS3 Feedback, THPS46:00 AM
    Republic: The Revolution Preview6:00 AM
    Stoked Rider for Mac; First Screens Posted6:00 AM
    Team MacFPS Seeks A Few Good Paintball Players6:00 AM
    X-Plane 7 Unveiled6:00 AM
    View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, April 8, 2003 on one page

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    Search for other Mac games news stories or browse our Mac Games News Archive.

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