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Wednesday, December 3, 2003

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World of Warcraft Screens, Trade Skills Info
6:16 AM | Alvaro Radigales | Comment on this story, the official web site for Blizzard Entertainment's popular game service of the same name, recently updated its news section revealing no less than eleven brand new screenshots of the highly anticipated Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (MMORPG) World of Warcraft, all of them featuring the race of the Night Elves.

Furthermore, a FAQ about a recently revealed branch of player skills expected in this title has been made available. We are speaking about the Trade Skills, which will allow players to manufacture their own weapons and equipment as well as brew their favourite potions.

Here is a brief snip on the trade skills, as quoted from's web site:

There are two types of skills in World of Warcraft: gathering skills, which allow you to collect the raw materials needed to make items, and trade skills, which actually transform those materials into finished goods. Trade skills are generally paired with gathering skills in a relationship that makes each integral to the other. To make items with the blacksmithing ability, for example, players will need ingredients that are acquired by applying the mining skill. Players will not have to be equipped with both paired abilities to succeed, however. An alchemist working to create a potion can always purchase the necessary herbs from an herbalist.
For the latest information and screenshots on World of Warcraft, be sure to check the web site through the link provided below.

Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft
Buy World of Warcraft

Giga Designs Announces Dual G4 Upgrades
12:30 PM | Lucian Fong | Comment on this story

Giga Designs announced their entry into the dual processor market with the debut of two dual G4 processor upgrades. The dual G4/1 GHz board utilizes two Motorola PowerPC 7455A processors each sporting 2 MB of L3 SPB cache. Each upgrade is pre-tested at 1.2 GHz. The high-end model weighs in with two G4/1.25 GHz processors and is pre-tested to run at 1.33 GHz in Digital Audio and Quicksilver machines and 1.4 GHz in Sawtooth and Gigabit Ethernet machines. It also features 2 MB of L3 SPB cache per processor, but uses two PowerPC 7455B processors instead.

The dual G4/1 GHz upgrade card starts at $660 and the dual G4/1.25 GHz model starts at $736. They are compatible with all Gigabit Ethernet, Digital Audio, and Quicksilver Macs, as well as Sawtooth G4s that have revision 7 or higher of the UniN chipset. Giga Designs offers their products through site sponsor Other World Computing and will be shipping within the next week.

Expect to see a review of Giga Design's latest products in the coming weeks at IMG.

Giga Designs Upgrades at OWC
Giga Designs

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IMG Reviews M-Audio Sonica
12:00 PM | Johan Hansén | Comment on this story

Inside Mac Games' Jason Sims has looked closer at the M-Audio
, a small USB audio device that is a much larger step towards turning your Mac into a home cinema than its small look might reveal.

A small excerpt from the review:

The purpose of the Sonica is basically singular: to provide digital audio output for your Mac. Because it's a USB device, it can be used with all Macs that have a USB port; the small size of the device makes it an ideal solution for surround sound on an iBook or PowerBook. The optical output supports 16- and 24-bit audio at sample rates up to 96 kHz.
To find and read the whole review, follow the link provided below.

IMG Review: M-Audio Sonica

Freeverse's ToySight Goes Gold
11:40 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Freeverse Software today announced that ToySight, the company's camera-controlled entertainment software has gone Gold and is currently being manufactured in time for the holiday shopping season.

Here's more from the official press release:

ToySight features a dozen interactive games and toys for one or two players. Instead of using a joystick, mouse, or keyboard, players maneuver themselves in front of an iSight or other firewire camera to control the action. The players are superimposed transparently onto the game screen, and must use arm and hand motions to play the games.
ToySight will require a computer running Mac OS X, as well as a camera that uses the FireWire serial bus, such as Apple's iSight webcam. The software will be available at a suggested retail price of US $34.95.


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New Shadowbane Server, Patch Coming
9:36 AM | Mike Apps | Comment on this story

Shadowbane fans will be happy to hear about a new server on the way for the game, along with a patch to make way for the upcoming Rise of Chaos expansion. The new server will make some changes to previous experience and gold settings, hopefully allowing for much improved gameplay. Here's the full announcement on the server:

The new Cataclysm server will officially launch this Thursday afternoon around 1 or 2 PM EST. The Migration phase will actually begin one day earlier on Wednesday. The migration process was moved up one day to accommodate some changes to the original plan.

Thanks in large part to improvements of the Migration code by the Shadowbane team, users will now be allowed to transfer both their equipped items and inventories. This only applies to a character’s personal inventory however and not their bank.

Users from Carnage, Death, Deception, Dread, and Fear will only be allowed to transfer their character inventory if they migrate to one of the established worlds of Chaos, Mourning, or War. Any character migrating to Vengeance will be restricted to equipped items only.

We would like to thank all of our players for offering us constructive feedback on the forums about the new Cataclysm world. One of the top concerns about Cataclysm was that the experience bonus was probably set too low for a three month life cycle. After considering this issue carefully, we agree. So for the first world cycle we will set Cataclysm’s experience rate gain to 3x instead of 2x. Gold will remain roughly the same at slightly more than normal gain.

At this time we are still working on the victory point conditions for Cataclysm, so they will not be available for world launch. We expect to finish and approve the final design for the point system this week We will announce these victory conditions to our Cataclysm players sometime next week.

For more information on the server or patch, follow the links below.

New Shadowbane Server
Shadowbane Patch Info
Wolfpack Studios

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GarageGames Q&A
6:16 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

Gaming site NetJak has posted an interview with Jay Moore of GarageGames. As most computer gamers know, GG's main claim to fame is its Torque Engine, which not only spans multiple platforms, but is licensed on the cheap for independent game developers.

While the bulk of the interview covers typical topics such as the aims of GG, the Torque engine itself, and business parameters, one chunk in particular should be of interest to Mac gamers:

We're huge Mac gamer fans. Not to minimize our Linux support or for that matter Windows, but we find that Mac players are incredibly supportive of independent games. Mac players have high standards for quality, but are willing to purchase games they enjoy. I facilitated a Birds of a Feather roundtable discussion at Mac World last January and what resonated strongly was don't just do what has already been done and pay attention to gameplay. In our beta test of Dark Horizons: Lore, what can arguably be said to be the first Mecha game on the Mac, the number of Mac testers nearly eclipses the Windows Mecha fans.
Those wishing to peruse the rest of the interview can find it at the provided link.

NetJak - GarageGames Interview

Mac Games News for Tuesday, December 2, 2003

Clan Lord Demo Revised; New Update Coming Soon2:30 PM
Total Immersion Racing Demo Released10:58 AM
Geneforge 2 1.0.2 Patch6:00 AM
Infiltration 2.9 Released6:00 AM
ToySight Gold Master, Shipping Soon6:00 AM
Warcraft Board Game Reviewed6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, December 2, 2003 on one page

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