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Tuesday, September 6, 2005

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Dr. Germ Infects OS X
8:46 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Game Savant has released Dr. Germ, a puzzle game for OS X in which players must match colorful germs under a microscope in order to cure diseases, earn science awards, and work their way up the ladder to become a world famous researcher. The game features four play modes: Research, a collapsing puzzle game; Gene Splice and Petri dish, color matching puzzles; and finally Stranded DNA, a swap and match puzzle game.

Here are the requirements to play the game:

• G3/400 Mhz
• 128 MB RAM
• 20 MB hard disk space
• OpenGL
The game is available for $19.95 from the Game Savant site listed below. The demo can be downloaded from

MGF: Dr. Germ 1.0
Game Savant
Dr. Germ
Buy Dr. Germ

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Uwe Boll Interview
8:46 AM | Anthony Wang | 3 comments

1UP recently interviewed Uwe Boll, the infamous film director of game to film adaptation movies such as Alone in the Dark. In this interview, Uwe Boll talks about his latest projects, the Dungeon Seige and BloodRayne movies. In addition, he discusses other film deals, gaming, and responds to crititism from fans. Below is a selected excerpt from the article.

1UP: Why Dungeon Siege as your next project?

Uwe Boll: Because let's say after House of the Dead I was not convinced that I should stay the whole time with horror movies so I don't want to make one horror movie after that, House of the Dead was one and Alone in the Dark was more sci-fi/action thriller, BloodRayne is a vampire movie, kind of an epic vampire movie, and to do something else more fantasy epic, I thought it would be quite interesting. A lot of people are making the mistake to say these video game based movies are all horror, but...

Please follow the links below to view the entire interview or to learn more information.

1UP: Uwe Boll - Man, Myth, Legend
Dungeon Siege
Buy Dungeon Siege

Blizzard Wins bnetd Case Round 2
8:46 AM | Eddie Park | 1 comment

A short blurb at Slashdot notes that Blizzard/Vivendi has won another round in the ongoing case versus bnetd, an open source program that allows users to play Blizzard games on servers not under the banner. In straight legalese, according to a court PDF:

Appellants failed to establish a genuine issue of material fact as to the applicability of the interoperability exception [of the DMCA]. The district court properly granted summary judgement in favor of Blizzard and Vivendi on the operability exception. Summary judgement in favor of Blizzard and Vivendi is affirmed.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation is currently backing the folks behind bnetd, though Slashdot adds that they have yet to update their site regarding their next move.

Slashdot - Blizzard/Vivendi 2, bnetd 0
EFF: Blizzard v. BNETD
Blizzard Entertainment

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Descent 2 OS X Update
8:46 AM | Anthony Wang | 6 comments

Descent 2 has been updated to version 0.2.6b13. In this new version, the changes are primarily in graphics and audio. D2X, or Descent 2 is a Mac OS X port of the classic anti-gravity, space tunnel game. Below is a list of changes.

• OpenGL! - finally its plays nice & smooth!
• Includes libSDL (1.2.9)
• iTunes audio support!
• Create an iTunes playlist called D2X and play your music there.
• D2X will then randomly play a song
• Settings are now saved inside /User/YOURUSERNAME/Library/Preferences/D2X
Please follow the links below to download Descent 2 or to learn more information.

MGF: Descent 2
Descent 2 Team

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Inside The Doom Movie
8:46 AM | Anthony Wang | 7 comments

IGN has posted an exclusive behind the scenes video of the upcoming DOOM Movie. The video is 2:42 minutes long and is available in Quicktime format offers never before seen clips from the film. Besides that, this video features commentary by the movie producers, id Software employees, Karl Urban who plays John Grimm, and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson who plays Sarge.

For the folks unfamiliar with the forthcoming DOOM Movie, it is a game to film adaptation. In other words, the DOOM Movie is based loosely on the DOOM 3 video game. The plot follows a team of battle hardended marines to a scientific research facility where something truly has gone wrong.

Please follow the links below to view the video or to learn more information.

IGN: Inside Doom
id Software
Aspyr Media
Buy DOOM 3

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Cyan Worlds Closing?
8:46 AM | Anthony Wang | 3 comments

It had been mentioned before that Myst V: End of Ages would be the last game of the Myst series, but few expected it to be the last title from Cyan Worlds. With the final Myst adventure game to be released this Fall season marks an end to the popular adventure game series and the fall of its developer, Cyan Worlds. In a turn of events, a Cyan World's employee posted in his blog stating that a nearly all of the company's employees were laid off with the exception of Rand Miller and Tony Fryman. The financial woes and lack of funding for future projects was just too much to keep the company afloat. The company is still barely alive, just not fully functional as they still do not have financial backing for their other projects. Below is an excerpt from the blog.

Almost all of Cyan Worlds, Inc. was laid off today, including me. I know with the talent we have here people will find new places to go and do great things. It’s sad to see a company with such talented people to basicly expire. I don’t blame anyone for it happening. So today we had a company meeting in which Rand said some kind final words. Then we had a hamburger and goodbye gathering. Over the last few weeks leading to this point many of us had the hope that something would come up, but it didn’t happen. I will try to stay in Spokane as long as I can. I got some really good things going for me right now here and I hate to see that just dust in the wind.
On a related note, the book based on the Myst games will most likely be published despite the recent events concerning Cyan Worlds.

Please follow the links below to view the blog entry or to learn more information.

Blog: Cyan Worlds
Myst V: End of Ages
Buy Myst V: End of Ages

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Blades Of Avernum Scenario Contest Winners
8:46 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Spiderweb Software has announced the winners of their Blades Of Avernum Scenario Design Contest. Blades Of Avernum allows users to create their own RPG modules in the style of the award winning Avernum series. Kelandon took both first and third place for the modules Bahssikava and Lord Putidus. Terror's Martyr placed second with Mad Ambition.

More on why the modules were chosen:

First Place - Bahssikava, by Kelandon

After a bit of play, it turned out that picking the winner was not that difficult. Bahssikava had excellently written dialogue and cutscenes, incredible detail, and was technically superb. It fit in well with the Avernum game setting, and was a lot of fun. Well done.

Second Place - Mad Ambition, by Terror's Martyr

Terror's Martyr is a genuinely accomplished coder for the Blades of Avernum engine. His scenarios always stretch the engine to its limits, with intricate cutscenes, interesting town layouts, and tricky and unpredictable characters. Of his scenarios, this is the one we enjoyed the most.

Third Place - Lord Putidus, by Kelandon

When judging scenarios, we tried to be author-blind. That is, we looked at the scenario on its own, without thinking about who wrote it. And if that meant all 3 winners were the same person, that was it.

Kelandon's scenarios have been excellent, and while Lord Putidus is small, its plotting was very good and it had a really nice, creepy atmosphere. When I placed in the scenario engine the ability to take spells away from players, I knew this power could be used very well or very poorly. Once glitches were fixed, this is a case where this was used very well.

Kelandon won a total of $700 for the winning entries. Terror's Martyr received $300. Those in 4th through 10th place won a free copy of a Spiderweb game. To read more about all the finalists and download their modules follow the links below.

Contest Results
Contest Results Explained
Scenario Downloads
Spiderweb Software
Blades of Avernum

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Dragon Of Death Takes Flight
8:46 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

Pierre H. Vachon has released Dragon of Death, a new 3rd-party scenario for Fantasoft's turn based RPG Realmz. The second installment in the Prince of Death Cycle, Dragon of Death continues the tale begun in Dead of Night, and follows a band of heroes as they struggle against prophecy. This time the heroes must face the mother of all evil dragons while attempting to prevent the prophecy of the seer Zoniax of Southgate from being fulfilled.

Here's a bit more detail on the scenario:

- The scenario is quite large; indeed, it includes the following: 11 land levels, 8 indoor levels (castles, inns, shops, taverns, ruins, etc.), 1 '3D-dungeon' level, and 1 underground level. In other words, there is a lot of fun stuff to do in this scenario, in addition to the main story. Unfortunately, you will be able to do it all only if you register (registration cost: $10.00 only!), although there is still a nice deal for you to explore and experience before registration is required;

- Some 290 monsters for 555+ possible battles, along with some 99-odd new items, 15 available special characters (NPC's), some 30+ major villainous personae to contend with, and countless other characters (from bartenders to Great Kings and Queens) for the players to interact with;

- The scenario has a complex plot and full story, coupled to a textured background setting (no skimming on the details!) along with rich dialogs, good drama, extended freedom of choice for the players, many riddles and puzzles to solve, etc.

DoD is designed for a group of 6 characters beginning at an average level of 25 to 26. Registration of the scenario is $10. Vachon is also the creator of The Sword Lands Trilogy, three official scenarios written for Realmz. For more information follow the links below. The scenario can be downloaded at

Dragon Of Death Website
Dead Of Night Website
Dragon of Death 8.0
Psion's Sanctum Sanctorum

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Bill Roper Offers Hellgate: London Info
8:46 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

In an interview with Hellgate Guru, Bill Roper delves into the mechanics of Flagship Studios' upcoming Hellgate: London. Hellgate is an attempt to combine the fast paced action of a first person shooter with the more strategic choices of a skill based role playing game. Among other things the interview touches on the balancing act between two different gameplay styles.

Hellgate Guru: You said FPS players enjoyed this game (at E3) , does that mean that damage will increase if you hit certain weak points. (E.g. the Shulgoth's neck.) To follow up, can you disable enemies? Perform a hamstring, or even remove an arm?

Bill Roper: We don't have any special damage points implemented, although we've thrown the idea around the office, perhaps tying them to specific weapons. We are building an RPG that FPS gamers find very accessible since it looks and feels in many ways like the games they usually play. We want your success in the game to be tied to how well you've built up your character and the strategic choices you make in battle. We do realize that FPS players have some things they really want from games, and if there was a simple way we could appeal to that in some ways without making it unbalanced for the core RPG players, we'll give it serious consideration.
The interview also touches on Hellgate's skill system, difficulty levels, interactive environments, and a variety of other issues. Although no Mac version has been confirmed Roper has previously stated it is in consideration.

To read the interview and learn more about the game grab your holy water and set off for the sites listed below.

Hellgate Guru: Bill Roper Interview
Flagship Studios

A Bone To Pick With TellTale
8:46 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Eurogamer recently inverviewed Dan Connors of TellTale Games about Bone: Out From Boneville, the upcoming point and click adventure set in the universe of comic writer Jeff Smith. The interview ranges from specific information about the game itself to a short biography of those making up the TellTale team.

From the interview:

Eurogamer: Will the Bone game be like a good old fashioned adventure, or do you think it has more in common with the Psychonauts approach?

Dan Connors: Fans of class adventure games will find a familiar point-and-click interface and interactive dialogs in Bone. We've also added some fresh and interesting twists, which we think players will enjoy. We throw some fun mini-games and other surprises into the mix as well.

Eurogamer: How important is humour in the game, and what sort of writing talent have you got to make this happen?

Dan Connors: Humour plays a big role in Bone, and much of it comes right from Jeff Smith's excellent scripts. We also have Dave Grossman on board, who contributed to many of the classic LucasArts adventure games (including Monkey Island games, Full Throttle, Day of the Tentacle). Heather Logas, who we introduced above, is also playing a huge role in adding to the humour, fun and wit. One of the most enjoyable parts of the process has been bring the characters to life, because they all have so much personality and the writing is great. This really inspires the creativity in the animator or the voice actor.

As mentioned in previous IMG news briefs, TellTale has expressed interest in making Bone available on the Mac platform if the game is a success on the PC side. This interest is in part due to their desire to honor Jeff Smith's preference for Apple computers.

To read the full interview and learn more about the game click on over to the sites listed below.

Eurogamer: TellTale Interview
TellTale Games

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Darwinia Reviewed
8:46 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Darwinia, Introversion's unique real time strategy title has received the review treatment from Brought to the Mac by Ambrosia Software, Darwinia tasks the player with saving the Lemming-like Darwinians from a killer virus which is spreading like wildfire across their digital world. Describing the game as "revolutionary and groundbreaking" 2404 gave Darwinia a 9.1 out of 10.

From the review:

Darwinia is beautiful. It is not beautiful in the way Half-Life 2 or Splinter Cell 3 is beautiful, but it is beautiful in its own right. Its world is fully realized, and every item, creature, structure, and landmass is well designed and fits into the game's concept flawlessly. That being said, there is nothing revolutionary from a technical perspective here, but in a way, anything more advanced would make the game feel less real. Because you need to imagine you are in a virtual computer world, and everything looks so cyberpunk, the graphics really make the game work. Also, the colors are bright and vibrant. The graphics may not be earth-shattering, but as in Half-Life 2 or as in Far Cry , sometimes you have to take a few seconds to stop playing and just look around in wonder.

As any old-school hacker who came of age in the 1200-baud days will attest, Darwinia represents exactly what we imagined the world inside a computer could look like.

For the full review and more information about Darwinia follow the links below.

2404: Darwinia Review
Ambrosia Software
Introversion Software

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Savage 2 Teaser Movie and Port News
8:46 AM | Blake Buck | Comment on this story

S2 Games, developer of Savage 2: A Tortured Soul recently posted a teaser movie on the official Savage website. Savage 2 is the sequel to Savage: The Battle for Newerth, which combined elements of first-person shooting and real-time strategy in a unique ancient setting. The video shows lush environments, nice characters, and what looks to be some very promising gameplay.

Savage: The Battle for Newerth was recently released on the Mac, and while no comment has been made on a Mac version of the sequel, some information has surfaced. In a recent post, recently quoted Maliken DeForest from S2 Games:

"Let me start by saying that I would like to do a linux port. However our new engine (name K2) is DirectX driven, but we are contemplating doing an OpenGL version for a linux port. Its not ruled out by any means"

While referring to a Linux port, a Mac port would have similar problems because of DirectX. However if Linux port is still a possibility, so is a Mac port. So stay tuned to IMG for the latest news on Savage 2.

Savage 2 Website - Teaser Movie Article - Savage 2

Mac Games News for Friday, September 2, 2005

IMG Explores Unity11:41 AM
Codemasters Q&A7:04 AM
Just A Peek At Total Immersion Racing7:04 AM
Banana Warehouse Shareware Version Coming Soon7:03 AM
Bone Screenshots7:03 AM
Myst V Official Trailer7:03 AM
Myst V Website Now Live7:02 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Friday, September 2, 2005 on one page

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Thursday, September 1, 2005
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