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Thursday, May 15, 2003

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E3: Blizzard Demos World Of Warcraft For OS X
9:05 AM | Jefferson Regan | Comment on this story

Following the announcement yesterday that the company would be bringing World of Warcraft to the Mac, Blizzard Entertainment showed off for the first time ever the game running on Mac OS X at its booth at the Electronic Entertainment Expo. Our man on the scene, IMG's Lucian Fong, reports that the game was running on two Power Macs.

At the show the company also unveiled several new gameplay elements of the game, including a game's fifth new playbale race, the Night Elves. In addition, the company announced brand new classes, forms of transportation, and amazing new lands to explore. And finally, Blizzard also showed off for the first time the game's powerful and fully customizable interface, alling players to adjust the appearance and features of the interface to suit their preferences and style of play.

According to Blizzard, beta testing is expected to begin in Q3 (sometime between August and October), and it will be done in stages. There's no word yet on when it will be officialy released. For more information on World of Warcraft, head to its official web site through the link provided below.

Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft
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IMG Posts E3 2003: Day 1 Diary
4:49 PM | Johan HansÚn | Comment on this story

Our man on the E3 showfloor, Lucian Fong, has posted his impressions of the first day of the gaming Expo. The search for Macintosh computers led him and IMG staffer Michael Yanovich to the Blizzard booth. Where they could find two powermacs running World of Warcraft

Mike and I each spent a few minutes playing Blizzard's MMORPG in development and we both agreed that the controls and combat system are very easy to learn. The graphics look great, but the framerate wasn't. The Blizzard representative manning the Mac kiosk told us that WoW will enter beta testing later this year and they hope to ship the Mac and PC version simultaneously. I diverted my attention from World of Warcraft just long enough to hear a fellow Diablo 2 addict ask Rob Barris about the 1.10 patch. I only heard maniacal laughter in response.
To read the rest of the diary, that includes strange meetings with well know mac profiles such as Epic's Ryan Gordon and Amy "Please not another Nick" Torres from Aspyr Media, follow the link provided below.

E3 2003
IMG Feature: E3 2003: Day 1 Diary

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Apple Features BloodRayne
11:04 AM | Carter Sample | Comment on this story

Apple has posted a feature on Aspyr's latest game, BloodRayne. In BloodRayne you play as a half vampire, half human named Ryane, on a mission to find answers behind a mysterious evil force.

Here's an excerpt from Apple's website:

Two purple-cloaked representatives from the secretive Brimstone Society watch the events unfold, and we learn that the woman is Rayne, the hero of our story. She's a dhampir (half human, half vampire), and one of the mysterious watchers wants her to join the society, despite the other's reservations. Eventually the dissenter accedes and the two slip away, leaving behind a talisman that tells Rayne she has been accepted into the order.
BloodRayne is published by Aspyr Media and is available now at the Inside Mac Games Store. For more information on BloodRayne check out the Apple article and IMG's preview.

Aspyr Media
Apple looks at BloodRyane
IMGPreview: BloodRayne

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E3: Carmack Talks Doom III
9:46 AM | Mike Apps | Comment on this story

John Carmack, legendary programmer of id Software, recently held a press conference at E3 to discuss their upcoming game, Doom III. Gamespy was there and recently posted an article detailing the event.

In the conference, Carmack went into great detail about the development of Doom III, along with discussing trends in the development process itself. Here's a snippet of the article:

How did it all come together? "We made good strategic decisions two and a half years ago," Carmack explained. He went on to describe the problem content creators face when they're trying to push the graphical envelope: predicting where the videocard market will be three or even six years down the line. That's three years to bring a state-of-the-art game engine to market, and then another three years (hopefully) of the engine being relevant for gamers. Granted, Carmack has an easier time than most: He can influence the hardware manufacturers, making his designs somewhat self-fulfilling.

When Carmack started drawing up his plans for the DOOM 3 engine, he wanted it to break new ground graphically -- and then he wanted to design a game around it. It was about getting what he called "a real 'WOW' impact," and it meant sacrifices elsewhere. "You have to make compromises," he explained. A complex lighting renderer meant that players wouldn't be able to enter a room full of a hundred monsters and mow them down like grass. It defines a different experience; one where the player progresses from elaborate set piece to elaborate set piece engaged in brutal up-close combat with small groups of extremely detailed monsters.

To read the full article, or for more information on Doom III, follow the links provided below.

GameSpy: John Carmack on DOOM 3 and Game Development Trends
id Software
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Two New Doom III Screenshots Released
9:05 AM | Scott Turner | Comment on this story

Doom III, follow-up game to one of the most popular and well known first person shooters of all time, has had a sizeable new portion of media content released to the public thanks to the demonstrations and exclusives coming from the Electronic Entertainment Expo. One, or rather two of these new things to come out surrounding the game are brand new screenshots, displaying the incredible graphics and characters to be featured in the title.

You can grab both of the screenshots off of AVault's website (we've also posted the two screenshots below). Also note that this title has been confirmed for Mac OS X by project leader John Carmack, and is currently under development by id Software.

Doom III - Screenshot 1
Doom III - Screenshot 2
Doom III Screenshots at AVault
id Software
E3 2003
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Worms3D Report Posted at IGN
9:05 AM | Scott Turner | Comment on this story

A brief report of the upcoming game Worms3D has been posted on gaming website IGN, and gives an overview of what is to be expected from this classic strategy game. Author Kaiser Hwang evaluates the title both in comparison to improvements over the orignal, 2D Worms game and the all new complications thrown into the mix when acheiving a 3D perspective.

Here's a short clipping from IGN's report:

One of the more memorable aspects of the Worms games is the selection of offensive, and defensive tactics/weapons, and expect all of the classics to make a return. Bazookas, grenades, dynamite, air strikes, and even sheep will be available, as will a selection of new and unnamed weapons of destruction. Defensive maneuvers include digging underground, setting up sandbags, and even building forts. Didn't know worms were so mobile, did you?
For those who missed the original Worms, as partially covered in the clip and explained in full detail in the report, Worms was a slightly more complex version of the old 2D artillery games. They featured modifications to trajectory, power, and a variety of weapons fired from your cannon, all with the objective to decimate your opponent trying to do the same. The exception for Worms being, of course, that you have small controllable worms instead of artillery pieces.

With the Mac version currently being developed simultaneously with the PC version, the game is expected to be released for both Mac and PC by its developer Team 17 sometime later this year.

Be sure to read the full preview at IGN for more information on this upcoming title.

IGN Worms 3D Preview
Worms 3D
Feral Interactive
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IGN PC on Deus Ex 2: Invisible War
9:05 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

Adding to their burgeoning lineup of E3 reports, IGN PC has posted further impressions of Deus Ex: Invisible War, the sequel to the critically acclaimed Deus Ex. This upcoming title looks poised to deliver a quantum leap over its predecessor in just about every way possible, adding new gameplay, graphics, and revolutionary sound and physics engines.

One of the new augmentations that may be of interest to players of the original title is the Bot Domination aug, which allows players to take control of a nearby robot:

Once you've used the skill and taken control of the bot, you can use all of its functions including its weapons. Not only might this allow you to blast your way through a tough place while only causing the guards to think there was a malfunction in the bot, but it will also allow you to move closer to enemies to do some spy work, check out patrols, and listen into conversations that you might not have been able to otherwise.
Other details include the existence of an anti-technology group known as The Templars, an alternate fire mode with the rocket launcher that allows for player-guided missiles, and binoculars that allow for sound as well as sight. Those interested in the full read can find it at IGN PC.

As of yet, there's still no word on a Mac version. However, given the popularity of the original title, we're hoping to hear word on a Mac port sometime in the future.

E3 2003: Deus Ex: Invisible War
Ion Storm
Deus Ex 2: Invisible War

Logitech Announces New Cordless MX Duo
9:05 AM | Johan HansÚn | Comment on this story

Input device manufacturer Logitech has released a new cordless keyboard/mouse combination. The Cordless MX Duo features their top of the line Cordless Elite Keyboard and the highly acclaimed MX700 Cordless mouse. Both products feature Logitech's Fast RF cordless technology. A technology designed to overcome the largest drawback in early cordless products; transfer speed.

From Logitech's Press Release:

All of Logitech's cordless peripherals for the desktop are based on proven digital radio technology, which ensures reliable performance within a six-foot radius of the receiver with no line-of-sight requirement. The new Fast RF technology advances cordless performance even further by delivering a level of responsiveness equal to that of a corded mouse. Fast RF technology provides advancements in the three areas that most challenge cordless mice: report rate, transmission speed and latency. By increasing the cordless report rate to 125 reports per second, Fast RF matches the rate of a USB cable connection. This, in combination with increased transmission speed and reduced latency delivers the smoothness and precision previously known only in corded mice.
The Cordless MX Duo works with Mac OS X as well Windows 98 or later and has a suggested retail price of $99.99.

If you want more information about the products, head over to Logitech's website or read our own reviews of the Logitech MX700 and the Elite Keyboard. Please note that it is the corded version of the keyboard that is in the review and not the Cordless Elite featured in the Duo package.

Logitech: Introducing Cordless MX Duo
IMG Review: Logitech Elite keyboard
IMG Review: Logitech MX700

Mac Games News for Wednesday, May 14, 2003

E3: PC Halo Screenshots and Videos Released11:50 AM
Star Trek: Elite Force II Impressions Posted11:50 AM
E3: World of Warcraft Coming to Mac OS X11:47 AM
IMG Reviews Saitek's P880 Gamepad10:38 AM
Aspyr's SpyHunter Ships10:11 AM
E3: America's Army Heads to Mac9:56 AM
Microsoft Debuts Halo PC Website9:16 AM
Aspyr Status Updates7:18 AM
Europa Universalis II Shipping6:15 AM
Deus Ex: Invisible War Site Live6:13 AM
World of Warcraft E3 Preview6:13 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, May 14, 2003 on one page

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