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Tuesday, November 25, 2003

Aspyr Game Combo Ships; New Virtual Programming Bundles
9:53 AM | Jean-Luc Dinsdale | Comment on this story

Hot on the heels of last week's announcement of Feral Interactive's new game bundles, British game publishers Virtual Programming Ltd. have also announced three new game bundles in time for the Holiday shopping season.

The Europa Universalis II and Hearts of Iron Bundle offers two vast strategic games, created by the same developer, for £39.95. Europa Universalis II spans the history of Europe from 1419 to 1820, allowing players to pick from 90 different nations to battle the game's powerful AI opponents. The game encompasses over 500 different historical missions and over 200 different historical events for you to battle through. Hearts Of Iron puts players in the midst of World War II in the nation of their choosing. While players are allowed to pick the front of their choosing, the game focuses on the epic struggle between the great alliances of the new world orders - Fascism, Communism and Democracy.

The KickOff 2002 and Player Manager 2003 Bundle give football (uh, soccer) fans something to cheer about. KickOff 2002, an overhead soccer sim, puts players in charge of a full team of sixteen of the finest soccer players on the planet as they battle their way through tournaments against the game's other 203 FIFA-registered international teams, and gives players first hand experience into the pace and rush of international soccer. And for those who can't play (but can teach), there's Player Manager 2003, labelled as the world's best soccer management simulation. Players are put in charge of all aspects of training and managing a soccer team, from team selection, training, play design, practice, financial affairs, the pre-game pep session, and the post game analysis. Payoff for all your hard work is that actual soccer match itself, allowing managers to sit back and watch their team work out their teachings in the game's sophisticated 3D engine. The soccer bundle is available for £24.95.

Virtual Programming's WipeOut 2097 and Payback Bundle is the company's console-inspired arcade combo. WipeOut 2097, the Mac's premier zero-g, 3D arcade racer, features 11 unique weapons to be used on the games dozen maps, against either computer-controlled opponents in the single-player game, or human ones in the game's multiplayer mode. The original Grand Theft Auto-inspired Payback, played from a bird's-eye view, makes its players work their way through a series of violent, gangster-style criminal missions, each one bloodier than the last, as they climb the social ladders of the underworld. This arcade combo is also available for £24.95.

Keep in mind, however, that the prices listed above for Virtual Programming's new game bundles are only available until Christmas, and are of limited quantity. Check out their website for shipping info using the links below.

Over on this side of the pond, Aspyr Media's Leave the Lights On Combo is now shipping. Players wanting to get their hands on Aspyr's trio of terror shooters - American McGee's Alice, Clive Barker's Undying, and Terminal Reality's Bloodrayne, should look into the new bundle, which retails for $29.99 USD while supplies last. Check out the links below for more info.

Virtual Programming's Game Bundle Trio
Aspyr's Leave The Lights On Combo
Virtual Programming
Aspyr Media

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MacMohaa Releases MOHAA Server Tool
1:24 PM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

Col.Polyp, a member of the renowned Macintosh Medal of Honor website/community, MacMohaa, has released a program titled Gamer Server Configurator (GSC), which will allow users to host custom made Medal of Honor servers on their Macs. The program features more than 25 customizable options, dedicated server support, and more. Here's more from the official press release:

Col.Polyp, of the now famous MacMohaa website ( has released his first OSX tool for the Macintosh version of Medal of Honor:Allied Assault.

The tool is called "Game Server Configulator" (GSC) and allows you to set up and run a custom Medal of Honor:Allied Assault server. GSC Mohaa has over 25 configurable options (most of which are not all available from within the game menus) and you can load and save several different server configurations. Of course, both playable and dedicated servers can be run with GSC Mohaa.

GSC is currently in the public beta status and can be downloaded for free at the link below.

Game Server Configurator
Download GSC 0.4beta
Medal of Honor: Allied Assault
Buy Medal of Honor: Allied Assault

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OpenKnights Releases Mac NWN Auto-Updater Beta
1:23 PM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

The OpenKnight Consortium, a fellowship of players and developers set on bringing quality open-sourced utilities for Neverwinter Nights to Linux and the Mac, has released a beta version of the NWN-Auto Updater, a program that allows users to easily update their version of Neverwinter Nights with the click of a button. The program also provides a simple way to converting and installing the SoU expansion pack CD (a Windows only expansion that in the past, could be used for Mac through a somewhat complicated process). The official press release reads:

The OpenKnights Consortium is unveiling a beta release of the NWN Auto-Updater. For those of you who would like to have a 'one click' solution to updating your Macintosh release of NWN the solution is at hand.

The NWN Auto-Updater program is designed to provide a simple user interface which enables users to automatically download and apply updates to the NWN Installations on their Mac. Additionally it will also update/install SoU from the Linux resources on the SoU CD.

While neither BioWare ( nor MacSoft ( are able to provide tech-support for an PC SoU CD Install on the Macintosh, this installer is able to painlessly install SoU from the PC CD-Rom, along with working out which version you have currently installed. It then downloads and installs the needed patches from the Bioware FTP Servers. In this beta release, HotU is not yet supported, please check back after the release of HotU for updated support information.

For those users on dial-up connections is also has the capability to save the downloaded updates.

You can test out the beta yourself by downloading it from the link below. You will need a licensed copy of Neverwinter Nights in order to run the application, as well as a copy of the Shadows of Undrentide in order to use the easy installation feature. Be sure to check out the official OpenKnight Consortium website for more project information.

Download NWN Auto-Updater Beta
OpenKnights Consortium
Neverwinter Nights
Buy Neverwinter Nights

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IMG Posts Cosmic Encounter Online Review
12:44 PM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

Inside Mac Games writer Ken Newquist has written a review of Cosmic Encounter Online (CEO), a digitized representation of the 1970s board game, and is available now on our webpage. As with others, the review covers everything from graphics to gameplay, and offers Ken's final verdict in our four scoring categories. Here's a snippit from the article:

Those are the basic rules, and in most games, players would be expected to abide by them. But Cosmic Encounter is not like most games -- its rules are meant to be broken. Each of the game's 21 playable alien factions has a different special power which allows it to break the rules in a unique way. For example the Calculator has the power to equalize -- after pods are revealed during an attack, it can "equalizes" them, reducing the value of the greater pod to that of the lesser. The Laser has the power to blind -- opponents facing the alien don't get to pick their encounter pods, instead one is randomly chosen for them. The Machine is relentless with its power to continue, which allows it to attack after every successful encounter, rather than the two assaults everyone else gets.
For further insights, be sure to read the full review. You can find more information regarding CEO from the links below.

IMG Review: Cosmic Encounter Online
Cosmic Encounter Online
Future Pastimes, LLC

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America's Army 2.0 Coming Wednesday
12:44 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

The America's Army web site has news that the Macintosh version of America's Army 2.0 will be released tomorrow. Here's what was posted on the AA website earlier today:

AA:SF (SFAS) v2.0 will be made available tomorrow for Mac client, Linux client, and Linux server.
Here's a bit more info on what's included in 2.0:
This version introduces a new character class: Special Forces (MOS 18-series). This MOS isn't for the faint at heart, gang. To even be considered for qualification, you need to have a minimum honor of 15 and have successfully completed all Basic Training and Airborne School missions. Next, you'll need to complete the 2 SF training missions: Aircraft, Vehicle, and Weapon Identification (SF AVWID) and Escape and Evasion (SF E and E). Then, and only then, will you qualify to participate as a Special Forces Soldier in our 4 new multiplayer maps: SF Combat Search and Rescue, SF Recon, SF Hospital, and Pipeline SF.

But there's much more in this new release, to include the following:

• New weapons (including the SOPMOD M4 carbine, with almost a dozen interchangeable, customizable components)
• New OPFOR weapons (the AKS-74U; the OPFOR equivalent to the M4 mod)
• New indigenous weapons (including the RPG-7 Rocket Propelled Grenade)
• 3D ironsights
• In-game IRC chat client
• Andromeda: SCI's new comprehensive server browser/authentication system/statistics reporting server system

For more information on America's Army, head over to the official website.

U.S Army
Epic Games
America's Army: Special Forces 2.4

HangMan Pro v1.0 Released
12:17 PM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

HangMan Pro, a computerized version of the classtime favorite Hang Man, is now available. From the people who brought you Hang3000, HangMan Pro features 65 different word categories, speech support, a hints system, and much more.

Here's the official press release:

Hangman Pro (the successor to Hang3000) is a colorful, educational, non-violent word-guessing game, with dozens of built-in categories of words, unlimited custom word lists, hinting, digitized sounds, speech, timed games, a new photo feature, and much more.

Hangman Pro now features 65 categories of words including Anatomy, Animals, Artists, Astronauts, Astronomy, Authors, Baseball Teams, Basketball Teams, Best Actors, Best Actresses, Best Pictures, Birds, Books, Canada, Cars, Cartoons & Comics, Chess, Christmas, Cities, Clothing, Colors, Composers, Computer Buzzwords, Constellations, Cosmetics Aisle, Countries, Country Music, Desserts, Dinosaurs, Elements, First Ladies, Football Teams, Fruits, Hard Words, Hockey Teams, Insects, Islands, Jazz, Jewelry, Jobs, Magazines, Monsters, Musical Instruments, Mythology, Olympic Events, Operas, Planets, Presidents, Religion, Rock & Roll, Rocks and Minerals, Scientists, Shakespeare, Star Trek, States, State Capitals, Street Signs, Television Shows, Tools, Toys and Games, Trees, Vegetables, Vice Presidents, Weather, and Women in History. Truly something for everyone!

Note to International Users: Hangman Pro supports the entry and display of words in Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, Flemish, French, German, Italian, Norwegian, Spanish and Swedish.

Hangman Pro requires a PPC Macintosh and a screen resolution of 800x600 (or more). Hangman Pro runs natively in both OS9 and OSX. (A Windows version is also available.)

HangMan Pro is available now for Mac OS X, Mac OS 9, and Windows. Registration starts at $25, and site licensing is available. Check out the official website for more information.

Hangman Pro
Space-Time Associates

Descent 2 for OS X Update
12:09 PM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

d2X, an ambitious team of programmers who are currently bringing MacPlay's classic Descent 2 to today's modern day operating systems, has updated the Macintosh version of their product with the following changes:

  • Removed debug code
  • Added music volume support
  • You can check out the links below for more information. Don't have a licensed copy of Descent 2? The newest version includes a free demo, so anyone can join on in the fun.

    D2X for MacOS X
    D2X Project

    GameRanger v3.5.2 Now Available
    11:56 AM | Galen Wiley | Comment on this story

    GameRanger, the celebrated Mac-exclusive Internet gaming service has reached version 3.5.2, receiving some exciting new features for those subscribed to its Premium service. Included is a pseudo-service that allows players of Shadowbane, Everquest, and World War II Online to gather groups to play online, utilizing the service's built in voice communication software. Here's a full list of fixes and changes from the official website:

  • Added pseudo-support for EverQuest, Shadowbane, and World War ][ Online, allowing Premium members to gather groups friends to play with in-game voice communications
  • Improved the way required game versions are handled to be less confusing. Now it shows as having the game even if it's too old, but prevents joining or hosting game rooms until updated. Also shows the version number required
  • Fixed a bug with the chat entry field mistakenly assuming it had too many characters to paste
  • Added manual volume override for mics that don't have volume support (eg. Labtec)
  • If you already have a copy of GameRanger on your computer, the program should automatically update itself the next time it is opened. For those who don't, you can download GameRanger for free from the link below.


    Napoleonic Strategy Game 'Friedland' Updated For OS X
    11:22 AM | Jean-Luc Dinsdale | Comment on this story

    Tactical game developers By Design Inc have updated their Napoleonic warfare simulation Friedland for OS X.

    Friedland is an overhead-view, Napoleonic warfare sim, based on the developer's Waterloo Campaign game engine, depicting the events of June 14th, 1807, where a major battle between Napoleon and his Russian adversaries came to pass:

    On June 13th Russian and French troops had a minor fight over supplies stored in Friedland. As more Russian troops arrived in the area during that day Bennigsen moved them to the western side of the river to protect Friedland from the nearby French.

    The French commander Lannes saw the movement of Russian troops and sent messages to Napoleon to inform him that the Russian army was crossing the river to march to Koenigsberg. Napoleon ordered most of his army to concentrate at Friedland. By 3 am on the morning of June 14th the French had some 9000 infantry and 3000 cavalry in the area.

    All morning Russian troops hurried across the bridges at Friedland. They believed that they faced only Lannes corps. By 9 am the French had 9000 infantry and 8000 cavalry on the other hand the Russians had almost 46,000 men.

    Bennigsen build some small bridges across the Millstream that ran down the middle of his army. By 10 am the French army had grown to 23,000 infantry and 10,500 cavalry. At this point the Russian realized that they were in trouble and could only hope that the French would not crush them before night fall so they could slip back across the river.

    At noon Napoleon arrived on the scene. He then waited for the rest of his army to come up while both sides fired cannons at each other. By 5 pm Napoleon was ready and with 80,000 men he attacked.

    Friedland is available for $24.95 USD from the developer's website. Players interested in checking out the game should head over to the developer's download page, where they can get their hands on additional campaigns, including the Waterloo Campaign, the Gettysburg demo, and the American Civil War demo. Check out the links below for more info.

    Friedland Available for OS X
    By Design Download Page

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    State of Shadowbane Posted
    10:02 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

    A new article on the Ubi Soft news page for their Massively Multiplayer Online RPG Shadowbane goes into detail on what's currently happening in the title's realm. This "State of Shadowbane" piece details what issues the developers are currently attempting to hammer out, as well as information about the upcoming Rise of Chaos expansion and how they plan on increasing the world's size even more this winter.

    Here's an excerpt from the update:

    One great piece of news is The Rise of Chaos expansion pack’s release is imminent! In a few short weeks, the scions of the Dark Lords will return to the fragments of Aerynth, eager to avenge their defeat in the War of Scourge. With the RoC expansion comes the Nephilim, a new playable Race, as well as new Classes and Disciplines. The RoC will offer some very high level adventuring regions tainted by the touch of Chaos. These new zones will be deadly, unlike anything ever experienced in Shadowbane before. The expansion also heralds significant improvements in Shadowbane’s environment and weather effects, the first of many sweeping graphical improvements planned by the Shadowbane team. Play testing for the Rise of Chaos is already underway, and more details pertaining to the Rise of Chaos expansion will be released in the next few weeks.
    For more information on Shadowbane or the Rise of Chaos expansion, be sure to check out the Ubi Soft site.

    State of Shadowbane
    Wolfpack Studios

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    Apple Posts Tomb Raider Trailer
    9:53 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

    The Apple Games section has posted a new trailer of Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness, the latest in this adventure series featuring Lara Croft. The QuickTime trailer contains both pre-rendered game setup as well as actual in-game footage of the action.

    Here are a few of the new features pulled from Aspyr Media's mini-site:

      Character Evolution- Improve Lara's abilities and witness her adapt to how you play the game. You are rewarded for puzzle solving and exploration in the form of improvements to Lara's jumping ability, brainpower, upper body strength etc.

      Character Interaction- For the very first time in a Tomb Raider game, Lara has the ability to talk to characters. The choices you make in conversation will affect Lara's route through the game.

      Advanced Control- Take more direct and fluid control over Lara with an entirely new control system and experience new levels of gameplay with hand-to-hand combat, stealth attacks, last change grabs and more.

    Head over now to check out the full video on Apple's site, and stay tuned to IMG for the latest on Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness, as the game moves through beta. Aspyr expects it will be released some time next month.

    View Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness Trailer
    Core Design
    Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness
    Buy Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness

    Mac Games News for Monday, November 24, 2003

    IMG Previews Rainbow Six 3: Raven Shield12:17 PM
    New Vendetta Test Update12:17 PM
    Aspyr Updates Tiger Woods 20036:00 AM
    Mac Halo Release Date Update6:00 AM
    The Gamesome Mac Talks with MythDevelopers6:00 AM
    View all of the Mac games news for Monday, November 24, 2003 on one page

    Recent Mac Games News

    Friday, November 21, 2003
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    Search for other Mac games news stories or browse our Mac Games News Archive.

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