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Thursday, July 10, 2003

Free GameHouse Games for .Mac Users
8:31 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

A recent news post at Macintosh news site MacMinute has revealed a new promotion for users of .Mac. Those subscribed to Apple's official suite of Mac exclusive utilities will find six free solitaire games/variations from popular developer GameHouse in the members only section of the .Mac website. The free titles include Golf, Turbo, Klondike, Pyramid, Crescent, and Addiction.

In addition, .Mac is also offering its users a $5 discount with the purchase of Super Mah Jong Solitaire, also from GameHouse, as well as a free online training course in iTunes (a $40 value). Here's the full news post:

Apple has added six free solitaire games from GameHouse to the members-only section of its .Mac Web site. The game styles include Golf, Turbo, Klondike, Pyramid, Crescent, and Addiction. A US$5 discount is also being offered on GameHouse's Super Mah Jong Solitaire. In addition, Apple is currently providing a free version of the online training course "Going Digital with iTunes" ($39.95 value). "Practice steps, helpful tips, and 28 QuickTime movies show how to use iTunes 4 and your Mac, including adding an iPod to your digital music system and using the new iTunes Music Store."
You will need to be subscribed to .Mac in order to take advantage of these special offers. If you are not a member yet, you can subscribe to the service for $99/year from the link below.

MacMinute: Free games, iTunes training for .Mac users

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Shadowbane Patch to Add Speed, 'Refiner', More
9:37 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

UbiSoft has posted an article on their website regarding the upcoming update to their popular MMORPG, B>Shadowbane. The article gives readers an in-depth look at changes and new features that the new update will include. Among these changes: a performance monitor that allows users to automatically alter graphical settings when performance load on their machines are unusually high, a new in-game non-player character, the Refiner, to assist in recovering lost training points, a friends list for tracking the status of fellow adventures, numerous bug fixes/minor feature enhancements, performance and game balance improvement, and much more.

Because the of the list's large size, here's just a snippit from the full article:

Shadowbane Friends List Interface
Shadowbane now has a friends list capability so you can track the online and offline status of your favorite fellow adventurers.

- You can bring up the friends list from the main menu under "Character."
- You can invite someone to be on your friends list. Note: this is always mutual – if you are on their friends list, they are on yours. Thus, they must accept your friend's list invitation.
- Other players can see your online state from the friends list.
- You can set your friend's list status to be "Away" or "Busy," and they will see that as well.
- You are notified when a friend logs on, logs off or dies.
- Right-click or control-click on a name in the friend's list to either send a tell to him, or to remove him from the friends list.

Be sure to read the full list of changes for more information. The latest patch will debut on the Shadowbane test servers sometime in the next week. If you do not have Shadowbane, you can purchase it for only $39.95 at the IMG Store. Subscription rates vary, depending on commitment length, from $12.99 for one month, to $119.99 for twelve months. You can find more information in the links below.

Shadowbane In-Testing Notes

ATI Interview at HomeLan Fed
9:16 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

Computer gaming website HomeLan Fed has posted an interview with Patricia Mikula of ATI Technologies, discussing ATI's current status in the computer gaming market. The question and answer section of sorts covers a wide array of information, including their thoughts on the recently released Radeon 9800 cards, ATI's relationships with game developers, and much more. Here's a sneak peak from the article:

HomeLAN - NVIDIA has their "The Way It's Meant to Be Played" program that we have seen in games like UT2003. Does ATI have any similar marketing plans in the works to woo gamers to use their products?

Patricia Mikula - ATI has a program called Get in The Game. It is a co-marketing program where we work with game developers and publishers to cross-market our products. This can include bundling agreements, advertising campaigns, positioning of logos on boxes etc. However, this program is completely separate from our engineering efforts with game developers and publishers. Whether or not we have a marketing agreement for a specific title, we will work with the game developers to make sure that our hardware and their game work together to deliver the best gaming experience possible.

For more, you can read the full interview. Also, be sure to check out our own interview with ATI at WWDC 2003. Links can be found at the bottom of the article.

ATI Interview
IMG Interview: ATI at WWDC 2003

BoXiKoN 1.1.2 Released, Mac Support Introduced
8:44 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

BoXiKoN, a logic puzzle game from shareware developer Shoecake Games, has been updated to version 1.1.2. The update namely adds initial Mac support to the previously Windows/PocketPC exclusive, as well as general optimizations. Here's a full list of changes from the developer:

  • First Shoecake Games Mac Release.
  • General optimizations.
  • Improved installation process.
  • If you would like to try out BoXiKoN for yourself, you can download a free demonstration version that limits play to four minutes a session. A registered version costs $15.95. Check out the links below for more information.

    Download BoXiKoN 1.1.2 Demo

    Click to enlarge
    IGN PC Posts Dungeon Siege Expansion Q&A
    8:44 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

    Fans of the popular real-time RPG title Dungeon Siege may be interested to know that an exclusive interview with Chris Taylor of Gas Powered Games and Ian Davis of Mad Doc Software has been posted on IGN PC, concerning the game's upcoming expansion set Dungeon Siege: Legends of Aranna. In the interview, Taylor and Davis give readers a sneak peak at what new features and surprises are in store for Legends of Aranna, as well as answer some common questions users have been asking. Here's an excerpt from the article:

    IGNPC: What's been the most difficult thing about designing this expansion pack? What does it add to the original game?

    Ian Davis: The hardest thing has been that the original Dungeon Siege was so epic and had so much great stuff that we had to think long and hard to come up with new features, spells, monsters, that were both unique and useful. In the end we feel we've created a great new adventure that any Dungeon Siege fan will be thrilled with and, using judicious additions to the UI & AI, we've been able to streamline and broaden the experience.

    For more information, including screenshots, check out the full interview. Dungeon Siege: Legends of Aranna is currently slated for a PC only release, but a Mac version is more than likely. You can order Dungeon Siege at our online store for the low price of $44 (MGCD/IMG Pro Subscriber) or $49 (non-subscribers).

    IMG Review: Dungeon Siege
    Dungeon Siege: Legends of Aranna Interview
    Dungeon Siege
    Buy Dungeon Siege

    The Codebook 4.0.5 Released, OS X Support Coming Soon
    8:42 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

    The Codebook, utility that offers users codes and secrets for many current and older Mac games, has been updated to version 4.0.5. The update fixes some minor bugs:

    Version 4.0.5 fixes some minor bugs and applies some fixes.
    The app's developers have also released new information concerning the upcoming OS X version of The Codebook, promising a new online based plugins system, and more:
    A new online based plugin-system, integrated forum, cheat submitions, and more... and don't forget it's for MACOSX! Coming soon!
    Check out the links below for more information.

    The Codebook
    Download The Codebook 4.0.5

    iEntertainment Launches Dawn of Aces III
    8:41 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

    In a recent press release, software developer iEntertainment announced that their latest title, Dawn of Aces III is now available for the general public. Like its previous bretheren, Dawn of Aces III puts the player into the role of a real World War I fighter pilot. The latest version of the game includes over 30 missions, 7 brand new aircraft, and exclusive online play over IENT's massive online gaming service. And now, the official press release:

    CARY, N.C., July 9, 2003, -- iEntertainment Network (IENT), the award-winning developer of the popular WarBirds TotalSim series, announced today the launch of Dawn of Aces III, a major new addition to the award winning TotalSims series of products. The new release, Dawn of Aces III, includes a new World War I terrain, 7 new airplanes, and new flight models designed to perfectly match the flying characteristics of World War I aircraft.

    Dawn of Aces III is a new product that continues the tradition of World War I flying started by the award winning Dawn of Aces II, which was originally launched by IENT in 1998.

    A little more than a decade after the Wright brothers' historic flight at Kittyhawk, the demands of war transformed the airplane into a weapon of death. Made of wood, canvas and wire, these early fighters took to the air filled with gasoline, ammunition and the likelihood that too steep a dive would rip the wings to shreds.

    With Dawn of Aces III, the player can climb into the cockpit of a WWI Biplane to patrol the skies and engage the enemy in ferocious close quarter dogfights. The player can become a hero just like Baron von Richthofen, Captain Rickenbacker, Bishop, Guynemer, Mannock, and Ball, some of the greatest aviators of World War I.

    Dawn of Aces III is the online game that will be the basis for IENT‚s new retail game about World War I flying. The new game will be called SkyKnights and will be released in the fall of 2003.

    The new retail game will include over 30 single player missions from Training, Instant Action, and Campaign missions starting with Bloody April in 1917. The new game will include a brand new interface, four difficulty levels from Arcade to Simulation, so players can start easy and learn to be a real fighter pilot, a new reward and role playing system that allows the player to progress from Lieutenant to General and win all the awards an aviator can earn including the Medal of Honor. SkyKnights will also include a mission builder so players can continue to design and fly their own missions, and trade them with other players.

    When the player wants to come online, he can join IENT‚s massively multiplayer online game service to participate in online battles with hundreds of players from all over the world.

    Dawn of Aces III can be downloaded for Free from . Everyone gets two weeks Free to fly and try the game.

    IENT is offering gamers a free two week's subscription to Dawn of Aces III Online, with regular rates at $14.95/month. If you would like to download your free copy of Dawn of Aces III, you can do so at the official website. Be sure to check out the links below for more information.

    Note: At press time a download was not yet available for either the PC or Mac versions.

    Dawn of Aces III
    Download Dawn of Aces III Demo
    Total Sims

    StepMania on Mac OS X
    8:37 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

    StepMania, a free, open-sourced dance rhythm game similar to commercial titles such as Dance Dance Revolution, has been released for Mac OS X. While the build is primarily for testing purposes, all major features in other versions, including song download and dance pad support, should be included. Here's the official word from the developer:

    StepMania on Mac OS X ready for testing.

    You can find it here:

    Thanks to Steve Checkoway for a great job in getting things work right on Mac OS X.

    If you would like to try out StepMania for yourself, you can find a download link below. Also, be sure to check out the official homepage and starting guide for further information (including where to obtain song files).

    StepMania Getting Started Guide
    Download StepMania v20030707 OS X

    Click to enlarge
    Sci-Fi Dungeon Siege Mod Available
    8:36 AM | Mike Apps | Comment on this story

    For those out there who have already run through the Dungeon Siege campaign and are looking for something new to play in the game, the new mod Copperhead may be just what you're looking for. A total conversion for the game, Copperhead brings Dungeon Siege's tactical gameplay into an original Sci-FI setting, and does it with style. Here the huge list of features the mod includes:

  • All new character model with new textures and attack styles.

  • All New enemy Models and textures with new abilities and attack styles.

  • Vehicle Enemies

  • Estimated finished around 15-20 regions

  • New static meshes and textures.

  • Higher Polycounts than the original Dungeonsiege

  • New story and events.

  • Full blown CG Intro Movie

  • New sounds

  • New music by Kevin Chow

  • Amazing effects by Jim Tran

  • 17 New weapons. See Weapon List

  • Community Names Added into game as Dog tags - See Names List

  • New Terrain and buildings
  • To download Copperhead, head on over to the mod's website. Like most Dungeon Siege mods, Copperhead is fully compatible with the Mac version.

    Planet Copperhead
    Westlake Interactive
    Dungeon Siege
    Buy Dungeon Siege

    Click to enlarge
    Republic Status Update
    8:31 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

    Computer and Video has posted a news article on their website concerning that status of Republic: The Revolution, an upcoming action-strategy title from Eidos Interactive. In the article, chairman and creative director Demis Hassabis of Elixir Studios and other representatives sound off on gossip related to the game's most recent delays. Apparently, the game has already finished development, for the most part, but due to various approval stages, the game may not be released until early to late September. Here's an excerpt from the article:

    But both Eidos and Elixir were quick to rubbish such gossip. "Republic is definitely not being shelved," a spokesperson for Eidos told us. "The game is in the final throes of being completed and we're currently working on a release date. Ourselves and Elixir have put a lot of time and effort into this product and the last thing we want is for it not to be released."
    Be sure to read the article for more information. Regardless of a steady release date, Republic: The Revolution is currently Mac-bound, and is expected to be released shortly after the PC version. Be sure to check out the links below for more information.

    CVG Exclusive: Eidos Slams Gossip As Republic Delay Lengthens
    Republic: The Revolution
    Buy Republic: The Revolution

    Mac Games News for Wednesday, July 9, 2003

    Norbyte Releases Downfall X 2.0.412:26 PM
    New Q3-Based Game Underway12:25 PM
    Blizzard Posts Warcraft III Clan FAQ12:17 PM
    Epsilon Tahari Updated To 1.0.111:59 AM
    IMG Reviews Midiland IRS-F1 Wireless Headphones11:48 AM
    PlayMyth Status On Various Myth Updates10:55 AM
    EA Reveals 7th Expansion Pack For The Sims10:40 AM
    Delta Tao Releases New Eric's Solitaire X Alpha9:24 AM
    Quake Expo 2003 Underway6:32 AM
    Shadowbane Patch Screen Shots6:32 AM
    uDevGame 2003 Call to Sponsors6:32 AM
    View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, July 9, 2003 on one page

    Recent Mac Games News

    Tuesday, July 8, 2003
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    Search for other Mac games news stories or browse our Mac Games News Archive.

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