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Thursday, April 20, 2006

Aspyr On Boot Camp, Development News
9:03 AM | Tuncer Deniz | 25 comments

Aspyr this morning posted the April edition of their monthly newsletter. In it, Aspyr provides interesting comments on Apple's recent release of Boot Camp, which allows owners of Intel Macs to dual boot into Windows and Mac OS X. The company also gives a status update on some of its upcoming games.

First, here's what Aspyr had to say about Boot Camp:

Many have asked us here at Aspyr about the recent Boot Camp announcement
and its impact on Mac gaming and our company. Our stance is pretty simple
and comes from experience: The more hardware Apple sells, the more Mac
games we will sell. Apple's recently announced OS feature, Boot Camp, is
sure to sell more machines. After 10 years of developing games for the
Macintosh we've learned that things change, industries evolve and that we
must anticipate it and grow. We consider our ability to be quick and
nimble a competitive advantage. These changes are the kinds of things we
crave because it means things are getting better for the consumer. After
all, when was the last time you heard people talk this much about Mac

Aspyr will continue to focus on 3 things:

1. Ship native Mac games as quickly as possible.
2. Deliver the best gaming experience and best support possible for our
Mac customers.
3. Offer even more choices to Mac gamers.

We'll let you in on our future plans and products later in the year.

Aspyr's leadership in the Mac gaming market is important to us, as is our
commitment to being a great publisher for all video game platforms. With
titles such as Dreamfall, Spellforce(TM) 2 and Gothic(TM) 3, we're
fulfilling our vision to deliver an incredible entertainment experience to
the world. We do not fear change; we anticipate it and kiss it right on the
lips. So pucker up Boot Camp.

Aspyr also provides some development news on some of their upcoming games, including the SMP patch for Quake 4, a universal binary patch for Civilization 3 Complete, and an update on Civilization IV and Call of Duty 2:
Quake 4(TM) Mac has shipped, and we are very close to releasing our SMP
patch, which will add dual core support to the game. On our benchmarks on
the Intel-based iMac, we are seeing 20-40% speed increases in frame rate
with the extra processor! Other updates to our existing games include the
Sims(TM) 2 Mac Universal patch, which should be released by the time you
read this. A patch for Civilization® 3 Complete Mac to make it Universal
should also be available.

In development news, Civilization® IV Mac is in testing, and the game has
come together nicely. Performance is solid, and even our early test
builds appear to be very stable. It will be shipping as Universal out of
the box, similar to Quake 4(TM) and Call of Duty® 2 for Mac.

To check out the full newsletter and to subscribe, follow the link below.

Aspyr Media
Aspyr Newsletter Adds 4 New Mac Games
12:55 PM | Tuncer Deniz | 3 comments has added four new Macintosh games to its store including Betty's Beer Bar, Video Slots, Classic Game Trio, and Masque Card Games.

Betty's Beer Bar: Meet the beautiful Betty. She works in an awful bar, far away from any major city, where the most wacky and fun characters go for some beers. But her dream is to own a bar in a tropical beach. Help her raise the needed money working in several different bars so she can fulfill her dreams! Betty's Beer Bar is available as a digital download for $19.95.

Masque Video Slots features 25 video bonus slot machines. Play popular Bally Gaming slot machines, the actual machines from the casino and a collection of exciting new machines from Masque including Cash Party, Polar Payouts, Money Bees and Llama Loot. Masque Video Slots is available for $24.95.

Classic Game Trio: Over 640 Games in All!! Play over 225 of the most popular Solitaire games. Play 11 classic card games including Hearts, Spades, Euchre, Crazy 8's, Canasta, Gin Rummy, Rummy and Whist. Mahjongg also includes over 400 tile layouts, plus 5 other tile games including Niagara, Three Lines, Lines of 5 and Alignment. Classic Game Trio is available for $24.95

Masque Card Games: Play the most popular classic card games! Over 20 different games can be found in this collection of Card Game and Solitaire favorites. Three difficulty levels and a collection of children's games provide fun for all ages, kids to adult. Includes special themed decks and backgrounds for all children's games. 2D and 3D card views available for all games. Masque Card Games is available for $19.95.

Macgamestore: Betty's Beer Bar
Macgamestore: Video Slots
Macgamestore: Classic Game Trio
Macgamestore: Masque Card Games

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IMG Previews WingNuts 2, New QuickTime Movies
12:40 PM | Tuncer Deniz | 2 comments

IMG has posted a hands-on preview of WingNuts 2, the sequel to the popular arcade shooter from Freeverse Software. included with the preview are four excellent QuickTime movies taken from the game.

Here's a clip from the preview:

As WingNuts 2 opens, you are flying around in your highly experimental super-jet, taking pot-shots at hot air balloons to help keep your reflexes sharp as you guard the temporal prison that houses the evil Baron. Just as you are about to take out the last of the extremely dangerous balloons, the world around you goes a bit blurry, and before you know it, you are caught smack-dab in the middle of an attacking squadron of World War II-era planes and bombers. Luckily, the classic fighters are little match for your fully upgraded super jet. Once you dispatch the planes, something appears and starts attacking the temporal prison. This machine, tentacles waving about, seems to be devouring the prison. But, as you attempt to destroy this latest threat, the machine draws the plane into its open maw. Luckily, you ditch just in time to watch the machine, your jet, and the prison disappear into a time warp.
To check out the entire preview, please follow the link below.

IMG Preview: WingNuts 2
Buy WingNuts 2: Raina’s Revenge

Click to enlarge
Overclocking the MacBook's X1600 in WinXP
9:06 AM | Eddie Park | 7 comments

For those that haven't yet heard the news, various owners of the MacBook Pro that have been tinkering with Boot Camp have successfully been overclocking their ATI X1600s by using ATITool in WinXP. Word is that Apple's current driver keeps the X1600 underclocked compared to similar PC setups, and folks have since then been using ATITool to boost performance in graphics applications.

Accelerate Your Mac has started a running thread of reader reports regarding the overclocking. Initial reports vary, with one user reporting instability issues when clocking past a certain spec.

Acutally it is a quite strange overclocking experience to me , because on most desktop graphics cards, it may get glitch on the screen if you push the card too much before the system crashes. However on my MBP's X1600, it will run perfectly without any glitch at 460 / 360, but when I set it to 470 / 370, the system became very unstable and crashes.
As always, those interested in overclocking are cautioned against the usual issues, including overheating and increased power usage. On the Mac side of things, AYM has sent an inquiry to the maker of ATICellerator II to see if an update is forthcoming for the X1600.

xlr8yourmac - Reports on Overclocking ATI X1600
xlr8yourmac - Differences in ATI X1600 Clock speed - Mac/PC

MacMinute: Apple reports revenue grows 34% year-over-year
8:45 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Apple today announced financial results for its fiscal 2006 second quarter ending April 1, 2006. The company posted revenue of US$4.36 billion and a net quarterly profit of $410 million, or $.47 per diluted share. These results compare to revenue of $3.24 billion and a net profit of $290 million, or $.34 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 29.8 percent, equivalent to the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 43% of the quarter's revenue. Apple shipped 1,112,000 Macintosh computers and 8,526,000 iPods during the quarter, representing 4% growth in Macs and 61% growth in iPods over the year-ago quarter.

For the rest on this story, head over to

MacMinute: Apple reports revenue grows 34% year-over-year

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WoW - New Patch in Test Realms, Making Of DVD Available
8:40 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

Recent World of Warcraft news notes that patch 1.10.2 is currently being tested on their public test realms (PTRs). Test realm game clients are available for both Macs and PCs, and players interested in participating can arrange to have their characters copied over to the PTRs for ease of play.

Please be aware that the test realms are designed to allow us to test patches before they go public. Therefore, some changes may be introduced to the public test realms during the testing phase, before a patch goes live, and some changes may be introduced to the patch after the test realms have closed. To read more about the test realms, please review the Test Realm FAQ.
Character transfer times are currently listed between 3AM to 3PM Pacific time, Monday through Friday. More information, including where to download a test client, can be found at the WoW PTR page.

In related news, Blizzard has recently made available a World of Warcraft - Behind the Scenes DVD. Content includes:

  • Over an hour of commentaries, featuring Blizzard developers discussing everything from art creation to game design.
  • Digitally mastered Blizzard cinematics, including the World of Warcraft intro and the full cinematics from Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne (appearing for the first time on DVD)
  • Exclusive World of Warcraft artwork and cinematic concepts
The DVD is available from Blizzard's online store for $9.99.

WoW - Public Test Realms
Blizzard Store - WoW Behind the Scenes DVD
Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft
Buy World of Warcraft

RuneSoft Announces Buku Sudoku
8:39 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

Joining in the puzzle madness that seems to be permeating its way through humanity's consciousness, Runesoft has announced an upcoming title for the Mac: Buku Sudoku. A take on the popular grid-based "get every number in the 3x3 grids as well as each row or column," Buku Sudoku looks to include numerous features. These include the use of numbers, shapes, pictures, and symbols, as well as a variety of themes, a tutorial, and a puzzle solver for outside help.

Listed features are as follows:

. "How To Play" and "Hint" functions help you master Sudoku
. Three difficulty levels complement every degree of expertise
. Two game modes: Puzzle Mode and timed Arcade Mode
. Themes include Ancient Japan, Underwater Paradise, and Tropical Rainforest
. Create playing boards or choose from the extensive Buku Sudoku inventory
. Try grids in all the classic sizes - 4x4, 6x6, 8x8, 9x9, 12x12 and 16x16
. Solve any Sudoku puzzle using the "Create Your Own Sudoku" feature
. Use numbers, letters, shapes, animals - even Japanese characters
Buku Sudoku is currently slated for a May release. System requirements are minimal, with G3s being listed as acceptable for use as well as higher-end machines.


Galactica Anno Dominari 3.0 Released
7:51 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

Monkey Byte Publishing has released Galactica Anno Dominari 3.0: Fog of War. Like earlier versions, GAD gives players the chance to build a fleet, colonize habitable planets, defend territory and defeat other players in combat. New in this version is the fog of war feature, better Scout AI, and a host of other improvements and additions.

Here are a few of the new features in GAD 3.0:

- Fog Of War : All new
Opponent's ships, systems, and all information associated with those are now hidden from view. Each system and scout has a detection circumference. Ships are only detected when inside this area. As tech increases so does this area of detection. Three levels of detection aid in uncovering enemy strengths and weaknesses. Movement is never revealed.

- Matchmaker : New and improved
Hosts are now listed with our matchmaking server which allows your friends to easily find you on the net.

- UI enhancements
Support right click, make ships and systems lists sortable, better window resizing and positioning. Preference window allows for customization of your game window and set default features for system colonization.

- New Scout AI
Scouts/Couriers have more of a reconnaissance role than in previous versions. While they remain virtually undetectable their speed and ability to scan enemy fleets and systems provide you with a network of eyes away from your home system
To learn more about the game click on the links below. A demo can be found at

Monkey Byte
Galactica A.D.
Download Galactica A.D. 3.0

Click to enlarge
Heroes Of Might And Magic V Previewed
7:51 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Games Radar has posted a new preview of the PC version of Heroes of Might and Magic V, the eagerly awaited continuation of the popular turn based strategy series. HoMM V introduces new game play styles, a 3D environment, and a variety of new hero characters.

We are overjoyed to finally witness the resurrection of the Heroes of Might and Magic franchise, and to see it complete with so many different varieties of multiplayer. In addition to getting it on with up to eight players online, hotseat mode enables you to compete in a match using a single computer by taking turns; dual mode lets you duke it out with a buddy using a pre-built army, meant to be a 15-minute fix for your Might and Magic addiction.
Freeverse Software currently working on the Mac version of HoMM V. To learn more about the game click on the links below.

Games Radar: HoMM V Preview
Heroes of Might & Magic V
Buy Heroes of Might & Magic V

Mac Games News for Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Macgamestore: Hearts of Iron 2, Huge Clearance Sale11:42 AM
Apple Posts New Hot Deals11:34 AM
Deliver2Mac Adds New Titles11:29 AM
IMG Reviews Bricks of Atlantis11:21 AM
Hearts of Iron 2, Europa Universalis 2 Updated10:25 AM
Apple Features MMORPGs10:12 AM
True Combat Mac Version Announced10:12 AM
Burning Crusade Bestiary Updated8:22 AM
DROD: Journey to Rooted Hold Reviewed8:22 AM
Mac Neverwinter Updated8:22 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, April 19, 2006 on one page

Recent Mac Games News

Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Monday, April 17, 2006
Friday, April 14, 2006
Thursday, April 13, 2006
Wednesday, April 12, 2006

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