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Thursday, June 8, 2006

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WarBirds 2006 Available For Download
7:19 AM | Cord Kruse | 5 comments

iEntertainment Network has announced that WarBirds 2006 is available for download. This latest version of the World War II multiplayer online flight simulator offers a new role playing system, over a hundred different aircraft and vehicles to play with, as well as a variety of other additions and improvements.

WarBirds has been called the Best World War II Combat Flying Simulation game ever produced. The award-winning title allows players from around the world to enter a persistent online battlefield and take control of more than 100 different aircraft and vehicles, including fighter and bomber aircraft, tanks, and naval ships in realistic recreations of actual World War II combat. Terrain in the game is based on actual satellite data from around the world and flight models are realistic as well. The accurate vehicle physics in the game are based on real historical data.

The new WarBirds 2006 also includes a brand new simulation interface, greatly enhanced "help" including an online training program administered by qualified live instructor pilots, two new terrains -- Midway and Randolph AFB, new allied and axis aircraft, and free voice communication for all players.
WarBirds 2006 is a Universal Binary application available to users meeting the following minimum requirements:
• PowerPC-based Macintosh or compatible computer, 900 MHz or faster.
• MacOS version 10.2.8 or higher.
• 256 MB RAM required, 512 or higher recommended.
• 64 MB 3D accelerated card with Direct Support for Apple's OpenGL.
• Joystick is recommended (HID compatable).
• Internet Connection required for online play.
To learn more about the game check out the websites listed below.

WarBirds 2006
iEntertainment Network

IMG Interviews Peter Tamte
12:38 PM | IMG News | 1 comment

IMG's Michael Phillips recently had a chance to chat with Peter Tamte, founder and president at Destineer Studios, the parent company of MacSoft, a top publisher in Mac gaming. In the interview, Michael and Peter cover topics ranging from original Mac game development to Boot Camp's affects on big budget game ports.

Here's a clip:

MP: Destineer/MacSoft released Close Combat: First to
Fight simultaneously for the Mac, PC and XBox. How was that
experience? Will you be doing more of such releases?

PT: The original games we have under development will ship
simultaneously on the Mac, as well. And, keep in mind that even though First
to Fight was our very first internally created game, it was still a Top-10
Best-seller on Xbox the month it shipped (which is very rare for a
developer's first game), and it also won Macworld Magazine's Hall of Fame
award. You should expect our next games to be even stronger.

For the rest of this interview, just saunter on down to the link below.

IMG Interview: Peter Tamte

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Civilization IV Hits Beta, Late June Release
11:57 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Sid Meier’s Civilization IV for Mac has hit beta status, according to Aspyr Media. The game, scheduled to ship later this month, is licensed from 2K Games and is under development for Mac by Aspyr Studios.

Sid Meier's Civilization IV comes-to-life like never before in a beautifully detailed, living 3D world that expands the gameplay experience. This latest installment takes the franchise to new heights with the addition of new ways to play and win, new tools to manage and expand your civilization, all-new easy to use mod capabilities and various multiplayer modes and options.

Civilization IV is currently available for pre-order through for $49.95. Be on the look out for a hands-on IMG preview of the game in a couple of days.

Aspyr Media
Civilization IV
Buy Civilization IV

Football Manager 2007 Announced
8:22 AM | Eddie Park | 2 comments

Sega Europe Limited has recently announced the next iteration in the Football Manager series, Football Manager 2007. Currently in development by Sports Interactive, FM07 looks to continue the popular series, allowing players a full football team management experience.

Some of the new features include a revamped user interface geared to be more joypad-friendly, the ability to interact with any players in the world through the media, and the brand-new addition of Feeder Clubs:

Brand new to Football Manager 2007, and one of the most requested features on Sports Interactive's forums has been the addition of feeder clubs to the game. This new addition works in all the ways you would expect it to in real life. You can establish your club as the small team who receives loan players from a larger club or a large club looking for support getting your youngsters match experience by loaning them out. Have the first option on players from clubs, and schedule pre-arranged friendlies each season by simply asking your board for a feeder relationship and choose from the list they compile.
FM07 is currently in development for a variety of platforms, including Macs, PCs, Xbox 360, and the PSP. The current targeted release date is Christmas 2006.

Football Manager Announcement

Jeff Vogel's Fourth 'View From The Bottom'
7:19 AM | Cord Kruse | 13 comments

In his fourth View From The Bottom, a continuing RPG Vault series focusing on an indie developer's view of the gaming world, Spiderweb Software's Jeff Vogel examines the impact of gold farmers on massively multiplayer games like World of Warcraft. Offering a different opinion than many players, Vogel considers the practices of farming, selling, and buying gold acceptable activities.

Third, gold farmers have a reputation for being obnoxious and cutthroat. In some cases, this is true. But spend a little time around the regular people you find hanging around in the game, and you will see that this is only because people are, in general, obnoxious and cutthroat. My God, but World of Warcraft and EverQuest are full of the idiot children of married cousins. Gold farmers aren't even close to having a monopoly on cretinous behavior.
To read the rest of Vogel's comments follow the link below.

RPG Vault: Jeff Vogel Article
Spiderweb Software

Blizzard's Rise To Power
7:19 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

Issue 48 of The Escapist online magazine contains a trio of articles detailing Blizzard Entertainment's rise to power, it's loss of some creative employees, and the tremendous impact of its most popular title: World of Warcraft. The three articles provide an interesting look at the advantages and drawbacks of overwhelming success in the game industry.

From Exodus by Shannon Drake:

This small company culture was hard to sustain, as Blizzard grew on the strength of its previous titles and went through the rocket-powered launch of World of Warcraft. Up in San Mateo, Blizzard North headed toward its demise and subsequent shuttering, the departures began en masse. Some employees declined generous relocation packages in the Irvine Mothership to head off on their own, or to join already-established companies like NCsoft. As Blizzard North disappeared into fond memories, her alumni scattered to the winds, starting or taking prominent positions with companies like ArenaNet, Red 5 Studios, Flagship Studios, Perpetual Entertainment and Hyboreal Games. Some devoted themselves to single-player games, while others stepped up to challenge their former employer in the realm of MMOGs. Stieg worked with Ubisoft for a while, before joining Perpetual Entertainment in 2004 to help craft Gods and Heroes. Stefan and a band of former Blizzard North employees started Castaway Entertainment, where they're working on a number of projects. ArenaNet went on to release Guild Wars; the guys who went to NCsoft are working on Dungeon Runners; and Flagship Studios came up with Hellgate: London.

They went to many different companies with many different goals, but when discussing their reasons for leaving, there is a single common thread that can be summed up as "We wanted to do something that wasn't Diablo or World of Warcraft." If Robert Johnson is stuck playing the blues in Hell for all eternity, the after-game facing the Blizzard team was constantly churning out World of Warcraft expansions and enhancements to feed a ravenous mass of players that'll pounce on whatever they create, analyze it, chop it to shreds, exploit it, camp it, and then insult them by name for not churning out more content. And that's just on the first day it's out. So, what's a designer to do? Sign at the Crossroads and ride the wave of success, or turn around and start their own company?

To read the rest of articles, head over to The Escapist at the link below.

The Escapist: Issue 48
Blizzard Entertainment

Kaijin Reviewed
7:19 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Macworld's Game Room has posted another review, this time covering Kaijin, a retro shooter from Phelios. Following the tried and true gameplay of the many top down 2D shooters which came before, Kaijin offers players the chance to blast a variety of super evolved insects and ocean dwellers on Planet Terria. For its well executed and challenging rendition of the popular formula Kaijin scored 4 out of 5 mice from The Game Room.

From the review:

Kaijin—itself a variation on the Japanese word for “monster”—is very heavy in Eastern influence beyond just core gameplay. On top of its three difficulty levels, the game features three gameplay variants, “The Way of the Eagle,” “The Way of the Tiger,” and “The Way of the Dragon.”

“The Way of the Tiger” is classic Galaga-style play: While you’re restricted from moving up and down on the screen, you can move left and right to dodge enemy bullets. You’ll also fight against three bosses.

“The Way of the Eagle” gives you full mobility up, down, left and right through 30 levels of play.

“The Way of the Dragon” is an amped-up action mode for people who have gotten bored of the other two Ways. You’ll burn through three levels of hyperactivity.

The entire review can be read at the site listed below.

Macworld Game Room: Kaijin Review

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Apple Features Call of Duty 2
7:19 AM | Eddie Park | 4 comments

Apple has posted a feature that takes a look at the recently-released Call of Duty 2. The sequel to the hugely popular WWII shooter Call of Duty, CoD2 continues the action, allowing players to experience the war from the viewpoints of British, American, and Russian soldiers.

New battlegrounds are offered to players in the sequel, including deserts and cliffs:

Many well-known battles are represented in the game’s 27 missions, from the bloody struggle for control of Stalingrad to the scaling of the cliffs at Pointe du Hoc on D-Day to heavily-armored fights against Rommel’s tanks in the dusty deserts of Africa.
The feature contains several comments from Infinity Ward's president Grant Collier as well as lead multiplayer designer Todd Alderman. Also included are multiplayer tips, a list of cheats, and system requirements.

Apple - Call of Duty 2 Feature
Aspyr Media
Call of Duty 2
Buy Call of Duty 2

Mac Games News for Wednesday, June 7, 2006

Macgamestore: Bubble Shooter Now Available4:15 PM
Mac Call of Duty 2 Patch Coming12:32 PM
Wolfire: Turner Gets Animated7:46 AM
Apple Posts 3rd-Party Game Engine Look7:45 AM
HoMM V: Fifth History Of Haven Video Released7:45 AM
Legion Arena Reviewed7:45 AM
Mystery Files: Huntsville and Faires Reviewed7:45 AM
Why Apple Doesn't Focus On Gaming7:45 AM
Win A Set Of World Of Warcraft Figurines7:45 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, June 7, 2006 on one page

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