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Monday, May 12, 2003



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Aspyr Ships Spearhead, IMG Preview Posted
11:53 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Aspyr today announced that is has begun shipping the long-awaited expansion pack for Medal of Honor entitled Spearhead. Players will assume the role of Sgt. Jack Barnes as he endures the final months of World War II, from Operation Overlord to the Battle of the Bulge and culminating with the fall of Berlin. The Medal of Honor Allied Assault Spearhead combines nine expansive single-player levels with over 12 new multiplayer maps and includes new locations, new weapons, and new soldiers.

Here's more from the official PR:

Set during the last year of the war in Europe, June 1944 to May 1945, Medal of Honor Allied Assault Spearhead gives players a sense of the courage it took to parachute behind enemy lines during Operation Overlord, halt the German counter offensive during the Battle of the Bulge, and engage the Germans as they desperately try to defend their capital, Berlin.

Staying true to all the gameplay features that made Medal of Honor Allied Assault one of the most acclaimed titles launched in 2002, Medal of Honor Allied Assault Spearhead will build on the success of that game and add new multi-player gameplay modes, new soldiers including British and Soviet squads, new weapons, level editing tools, and an integrated server browser.

IMG has also posted a preview of Medal of Honor: Spearhead, based on a recent beta. The game is available for pre-order through the IMG Store for just $29.

IMG Preview: Medal of Honor: Spearhead
Aspyr Media
Westlake Interactive
Medal of Honor: Spearhead
MGF: Medal of Honor: Spearhead Demo
Buy Medal of Honor: Spearhead


Aspyr to Publish Handheld and Console Games
12:04 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Aspyr today announced that it has hired Chris Norden to lead the company into the mobile gaming market by heading development and publishing of games for the Nintendo Gameboy Advance and other handheld devices and mobile phones.

Here's more from the offical press release:

"Chris Norden's experience, knowledge and drive will make an immediate impact on our company," says Michael Rogers, President of Aspyr. "We are eager to see our company grow in the handheld and console market."

Norden graduated from Texas Tech University with a degree in Computer Science, a minor in Mathematics and considerable experience in Electrical Engineering.

Before joining Aspyr as Director of Product Development, Norden worked for Origin and Looking Glass Technologies and ION Storm Austin. At ION Storm, he worked with Warren Spector, as Lead Programmer for Deus Ex. Upon completion, he left to start his own company, Atmospheric Broadcast Systems.

Atmospheric Broadcast Systems specializes in real-time 3D graphics systems for television weather broadcasting. ABS's first product, LiveStrike, a real-time lightning detection and display system, is used at KXAN-TV 36 in Austin.

Norden brings more than nine years of professional experience in game programming, design and leadership to the position. Some titles he has worked on include "Jane's Combat Simulations AH-64D Longbow" and "Deus Ex," which has won more than 60 Game of The Year awards from industry publications. He also did contract programming for many Sony Playstation 2 projects, including "Deus Ex: The Conspiracy" and "Jimmy Neutron Boy Genius."

He recently worked with John Romero's new company, Monkeystone Games, on a Nintendo Gameboy Advance project entitled "Hyperspace Delivery Boy!" which is currently awaiting publication.

The announcement comes on the heels of Aspyr's recent announcements that it would be enter the PC games market by publishing the PC and Mac versions of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4 and SpyHunter.




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UT2K3 Demo Reaches Over 400,000 Downloads
11:24 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story

MacSoft today announced that over 400,000 Macintosh users have downloaded the Macintosh Beta Tech Demo of Unreal Tournament 2003 during its first four days, making it one of the most downloaded Mac demos of all time.

Here's more from the official press release:

Commenting on the enormous demand for the 135MB download, Tuncer Deniz, Editor-in-Chief of Inside Mac Games stated, "I've never seen anything like it. At one point we were registering 100 download clicks per second. Our traffic got so intense, we had to shut off the rest of Macgamefiles.com and put a single page up just for the UT03 demo."

According to Al Schilling, MacSoft's General Manager, "It is hard to get an exact figure, but we can track at least 400,000 downloads. Because of the number of people mirroring the tech demo worldwide, the actual number is probably much higher than this."

Unreal Tournament 2003 was created by Digital Extremes in collaboration with Epic Games Inc. It is being ported to the Mac by Epic Games and published for the Mac by MacSoft.

First shown to Mac users at January's MacWorld Expo in San Francisco, Unreal Tournament 2003 is the sequel to 1999's multiple 'Game of the Year' award winner ? Unreal Tournament. Using the latest Unreal technology, Unreal Tournament 2003 takes you to the merciless arenas of the future, where elite warriors rely on skill, speed, cunning and awesome firepower to demonstrate their style and become the ultimate champion. Unreal Tournament 2003 for Macintosh was named "Best of Show" by Macworld magazine during 2003's San Francisco Macworld Expo.

The Beta Tech Demo features 4 maps (2 DM, 1 CTF, 1 bombing run) and most of the weapons in the full version of the game. It is available for download at Macgamefiles.com.

Digital Extremes
MacSoft
Unreal Tournament 2003
MGF: Unreal Tournament 2003 Tech Demo
Buy Unreal Tournament 2003



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IMG Releases Konfabulator Desktop Widget
11:14 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Inside Mac Games has released a cool new widget for Konfabulator. For those unfamiliar with Konfabulator, it is an extremely cool JavaScript application that allows you to put items such as alarm clocks, stock quotes, local weather, and more right on your Mac OS X desktop.

The IMG widget allows you to put IMG's news, sneak previews, reviews, and feature headlines right on your desktop. It even has a file listing for our sister site, Macgamefiles.com. The widget also allows you to set the minutes between updates so you'll never miss a breaking story or hot new demo release. The widget can also be minized on your desktop. Click on the screenshot on the right to see what it looks like.

In order to get started, you'll need to download two things. First is Konfabulator and the IMG Widget. After you install Konfabulator, simply double click on the IMG Widget and it'll automatically launch and grab the IMG and MGF headlines. Follow the links below to grab them

IMG would like to give a big thanks Andreas Baumann for programming the widget.

Konfabulator
Download The IMG Widget



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GarageGames Releases Marble Blast Gold
9:17 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

GarageGames recently released a Gold version of its popular arcade game, Marble Blast. The full version of Marble Blast Gold is available for $19.95 and includes 100 levels, a variety of power up bonuses, additional hazards and the gold standard for high scores.

Here's more from the official PR:

"We created Marble Blast to appeal to gamers of all skill levels," comments Mark Frohnmayer, the Marble Blast project lead. "With Marble Blast Gold, we extended the gameplay of the original with 28 new expert levels, set to challenge even the most adept players."

"We've had a great response to Marble Blast, community members have built levels and one even created an internet high score logging modification," said Jay Moore, Evangelist for GarageGames. "For the Gold edition, we added a "gold" time standard to each level. We wanted to give new players an idea of the kind of level completion times the best players can achieve."

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.

Current Marble Blast owners can upgrade to Marble Blast Gold for $5.00. A demo of Marble Blast Gold is now available for download through Macgamesfiles.com.

GarageGames
Marble Blast Gold
MGF: Marble Blast Gold
Buy Marble Blast Gold



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Diablo II 1.10 Patch Info
8:43 AM | Scott Turner | Comment on this story

Blizzard, makers of the incredibly popular RPG Diablo II, look to be giving the game an extensive revision very soon. They have just unveiled info on a truly massive enhancement that should add quite a bit to both seasoned players and newcomers' experiences of the game.

This newest version of the game will bring it up to version number 1.10 and will include a wide variety of changes. Dozens of brand-new items, runewords, and better enemy AI are just a few of the enhancements planned for the update.

Here are some of the official changes, as posted on the Battle.net forums:

  • Seasonal Ladder Characters- A new ladder system will let players compete on a seasonal basis. At the beginning of each season, the ladder-based world of Diablo II will be "reborn" and players will be able to create new characters to start their climbs again on equal footing.

  • More Challenging Gameplay- Diablo II players who adventure in the Nightmare and Hell difficulty levels will experience a world in which the monsters have become more powerful and substantially harder to defeat.

  • Enhanced Skills- The skills of each player-character class have been thoroughly revised.

    Item-specific changes:

  • Enhanced Class-Specific Sets- The class-specific sets in Diablo II: Lord of Destruction have been significantly improved - some with abilities never before seen in the game.

  • New Unique Item Properties - Some of the all-new unique item properties introduce entirely new twists to the world of Diablo II. Imagine a Barbarian who can shape-shift into a Werewolf.

  • Improved Treasure Drops - The quality of items dropped by regular monsters has been greatly increased.

  • Better Gambling Odds - The average quality of items won via gambling has been improved.

  • New Anti-Cheat Measures - We have addressed some of the ways that "grief" players have used hacks or exploited features/bugs in Diablo II to unfairly attack others. We have taken measures to address a number of existing cheats, hacks, and illegal items with an eye toward preventing such cheating in the future.
This update is quite wide-spread, and Blizzard has acknowledged that it is still under development. For more information on what is currently known to the public, visit the unofficial Diablo homepage at DiabloII.net or you can go to the Battle.net affiliated Arreat Summit for complete Blizzard sanctioned statistics on the game. Links to these can be found below.

Battle.net Forum Post on 1.10 Update
Diablo II.net
The Arreat Summit
Diablo II
Blizzard Entertainment
Buy Diablo II



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New Elite Force II Trailer Released
8:43 AM | Johan HansÚn | Comment on this story

Ritual Entertainment has posted another short gameplay preview of their upcoming first person shooter Star Trek: Elite Force II. This short trailer previews one of the missions you will get to play in the full game. The video takes place on the hull of U.S.S. Enterprise.

From the Elite Force II site:

Hazard Team members can expect to find action in any environment, including the hull of the USS Enterprise! This short video highlights this tense mission from Star Trek Elite Force II and the steady shots required to get the job done.
To download this short trailer, head over to the download section of the official Star Trek: Elite Force II site. This is the second of the short video previews that has been promised to help making the wait until the PC release at June 24th endurable.

The Macintosh version of the game is already in development at Westlake Interactive and will be published by Aspyr Media. Though the port is still in early development, this should indicate less of a lag-time between releases. Stay tuned to IMG for the latest.

Ritual Entertainment
Aspyr Media
Star Trek Elite Force II
Star Trek: Elite Force II Trailers
Buy Star Trek Elite Force II



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Republic Previews, Trailer
8:43 AM | Alvaro Radigales | Comment on this story

Novistrana.com, the official web site for Elixir Studios' upcoming political simulator Republic: The Revolution, has posted a trailer of this title in its download page. Following this update, GameSpot, Gamespy and IGN have each posted their hands-on previews of the game.

Republic: The Revolution brings us to the fictional, former soviet state of Novistrana, ruled by President Karasov, a dictator who has outlawed all political parties but his. As a power-hungry political leader, the player must try to overthrow Karasov's government at all costs, using whatever means necessary. Needless to say, many actions of questionable morality will be necessary more often than not, or at least mighty useful.

Here's a snip from GameSpot's preview of this original and impressive title:

The other major choice at the outset of the game is determining your party's ideological stance. The choice is represented as a triangle of the three ideologies--wealth, influence, and force--that can be mixed in any numerical proportion you please. This party emphasis determines which segment of the population will best respond to your overall message and which characters and henchmen will work best with you. These three concepts also correspond to the three resources in the game that are spent when your character and lieutenants attempt actions. To keep things easy to understand, Republic will have a color-coding system that may be all you need to distinguish people, neighborhoods, and actions that depend on wealth from those that depend on force or influence. Despite these abstract-sounding features, the game's interface and mechanics actually seem pretty straightforward.
A Mac version of Republic: The Revolution was announced by Feral Interactive on February 24 and is in development, though no solid release date has been revealed.

For more information on this strategy game, be sure to check any of the three previews, as well as Novistrana.com's trailer, through the links provided below.

Feral Interactive
Elixir
Republic: The Revolution
Republic Preview at GameSpot
Republic Preview at GameSpy
Republic Preview at IGN
Novistrana.com Download Page
Buy Republic: The Revolution


Mac Games News for Friday, May 9, 2003

Finding Nemo Released7:50 PM
Introversion Releases Uplink Demo3:27 PM
TuxPuck Air Hockey Game Released3:19 PM
IMG Feature: Aspyr's Tony Hawk 4 Event12:36 PM
Mac UT Programmer Talks Demo, Final Release10:27 AM
Worms 3D Coming to the Mac! [Update]9:51 AM
Battlefront.com Talks Afrika Korps at IGN6:00 AM
Custer Pays Back6:00 AM
Medal of Honor: Spearhead Trailer Released6:00 AM
Nascar 2003 Races Into Duplication6:00 AM
 
View all of the Mac games news for Friday, May 9, 2003 on one page


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