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Monday, June 19, 2006

Unity 1.5 Released
10:48 AM | Eddie Park | 7 comments

The game development tool Unity has recently been updated to version 1.5. Tagged as the largest update to date, v1.5 contains a host of major updates designed to allow for greater flexibility and creativity in game design and creation.

Some of the major updates include an upgrade to Universal Binary, mesh and texture script interfaces, and a new character animation system.

Unity 1.5 has a brand new animation system. It now supports animation blending, mixing, additive animations, walk cycle time-synchronization, animation layers, control over all aspects of the animation playback (time, speed, blend-weights), and mesh skinning with 1, 2 or 4 bones per vertex (can be controlled with quality settings) Ė in addition to our classic ragdolls.
Accompanying these updates are a host of minor ones, including additions to the graphics, scripting, and performance capabilities of Unity. A full list of updates and descriptions can be found at the official Unity site.

Unity: Version History
Unity Technologies

Macgamestore: Laser Dolphin, Goldfish Aquarium Now Available
2:16 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Laser Dolphin and Goldfish Aquarium are now available as digital downloads through Demos of both products are available on the web site.

In Laser Dolphin, you take control of Laser Dolphin to experience action, adventure, and underwater fun. You will need to use all of your cunning to evade and destroy the bizarre sea creatures that you encounter - including Missile Fish, Robo Birds, TNT Turtles, Electric Eels, and Robo Sharks. No matter which opponent you come across, you will always feel safer knowing that you have your trusty laser strapped to your back.

Goldfish Aquarium - OSX is the first product released by Prolific Publishing, Inc. in the new LifeGlobe product line for the Macintosh. Building upon and improving the technology first demonstrated in Marine Aquarium, Goldfish Aquarium - OSX demonstrates the latest look and capabilities of your computer. Dynamic backgrounds, realistic fish movement, amazing animation are the latest enhancements to this visually stunning line of Entertainment Software. It must be downloaded and seen to be believed.

Macgamestore: Laser Dolphin
Macgamestore: Goldfish Aquarium

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IMG Posts Hands-On Civilization IV Preview
1:28 PM | Tuncer Deniz | 2 comments

IMG has posted a hands-on preview of Aspyr's upcoming game, Civilization IV for the Macintosh. This preview is based on a recent beta of the game. Here's a clip from the preview:

How your government affects diplomacy is also reflected in an entirely new aspect: religion. Whether or not your competitors have your faith will affect how they treat you.

That's right, the "R" word has made it into Civilization at last. However, there are no appreciable differences between the religions; all that matters is how you react to which ones your citizens adopt, and perhaps more importantly, whether or not you decide to adopt a state religion. If you decide on a religion, then you can gain benefits from each of your cities that has also decided to adopt that religion. This can happen naturally, or you can build missionaries and send them out across the land, including into the cities of other civilizations. Depending on which religions are adopted in any given city, certain churches and temples will or will not have an effect.

To check out the preview, follow the link below.

IMG Preview: Civilization IV
Aspyr Media
Civilization IV
Buy Civilization IV

Big Bang Brain Games in Development
10:44 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

A recent developer profile posted at the Unity site features Graveck Interactive. Among other projects, Graveck is currently working with Freeverse to expand on the Big Bang Board Games series, with a spinoff series titled the Big Bang Brain Games. Aiming to introduce a superior version of Sudoku for the Mac, the collection will also include a memory matching game, a Minesweeper-inspired game, and three other titles designed to get the brain working.

Another title currently being worked on by Graveck goes by the title Papa Pizza Patrol. Based on the very old-school arcade title Moon Patrol, Papa Pizza Patrol features the ability to pull tricks while delivering pizzas:

It started as a game with 2D graphics and my own engine. When we found Unity we saw that we could make it much more special. Now it's supercharged pizza delivery, side-scrolling style, with some really pretty visuals. You deliver pizza in your all-terrain pizza wagon across different worlds... while doing tricks off jumps, getting ahead of competitors, and hungry aggressors off your back. Did I mention hang glider powerups? It's how Moon Patrol should have been if the computer horsepower was available at the time.
The profile also covers Graveck's development process, including applications used for creation and various development obstacles.

Unity Developer Profile: Graveck Interactive

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Mac Battlefield 1942 Server Goes Live
7:58 AM | Anthony Wang | 2 comments

Macologist reports the MacAddict clan, loosely connected to the popular magazine has set up a dedicated Battlefield 1942 server promoting teamwork and fun. The server rotates the original maps in BF1942; no mods are played. Furthermore, to get a few good games and good hearted competition, the clan has set a predetermined date and time when everyone plays on the server.

Gameplay is focused more on teamwork and fun, than it is on racking up kills.

This Desert Combat Specialist has played on his share of servers and must conclude that the MacAddict Clan Server is by far the best around.

The clan has extended an open invitation for all Mac gamers. They meet every Sunday evening at 9:00 EST. However, please be sure to read their rules prior to joining.

Please click on the links below to learn more information.

Macologist - Mac Battlefield 1942 Server Goes Live
MacAddict Battlefield Clan
Aspyr Media
Battlefield 1942: Deluxe Edition
Buy Battlefield 1942: Deluxe Edition

Piracy's Toll On Mac Gaming
7:58 AM | Cord Kruse | 73 comments

A recent article by Macworld's Peter Cohen examines the impact of piracy on the Mac gaming market. Cohen discusses the magnitude of the problem with key figures in the Mac gaming industry, and studies the potential solutions.

Vice President Colin Lynch Smith told me that his company estimates that up to 50 percent of the copies of its games that are played online are stolen...

Destineer President Peter Tamte tells me that the difference Iíve described between sell-through and update downloads is more common than not. He said that when his company shipped its squad-based first-person shooter First to Fight last year, it found within a few weeks that more people were trying to log on to multiplayer servers with a single banned serial number than the total number of copies Destineer had sold combined.

Aspyr Media Director of Development Glenda Adams didnít have much better news. She sees the industry inevitably heading towards more copy protection systems like Steam, a scheme created by Valve Software, makers of Half-Life 2. Steam requires players to have an online connection to validate their software each time they want to play.

Feral Interactiveís Edwin Smith said that on any given day, dozens of copies of its games can be found being downloaded from pirate sites that use BitTorrent.

The rest of the article can be found at the link below.

Macworld: Piracy Bleeds Mac Game Makers Dry

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WoW: Trolls Revealed
7:58 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Blizzard Entertainment has released a new website section detailing the history, customs, and role of the trolls in World of Warcraft. Over the course of the next few weeks the company will be expanding the section to cover more troll races and tribal groups.

Have you ever wanted to learn more about the trolls? If so, then you'll enjoy the detailed history of the trolls provided in this section. Here you can learn about:

History 1: Early Troll Civilization
History 2: The Trolls and the Horde
Biology: Trollish Traits
Trivia: Are Trolls Related to Night Elves?

Within the coming weeks, we will be adding pages about the various categories of trolls such as the sand trolls, ice trolls, jungle trolls, and forest trolls, as well as the individual history of the all troll tribes: the Atal'ai, the Darkspear, the Bloodscalp, and others.

To read the rest of the information head or to the official World of Warcraft website at the link below.

WoW: Troll Compendium
Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft
Buy World of Warcraft

Mac Games News for Friday, June 16, 2006

Macgamestore Launches Free Web Games3:13 PM
IMG Posts Weird Worlds: Return to Infinite Space Review1:57 PM
*DAMN Battle League XIV Begins8:50 AM
Call Of Duty 2 For Mac Reviewed8:50 AM
Custer Takes Cars For A Drive8:50 AM
Ideas Which Changed Gaming8:50 AM
Tempus Irae for Aleph One8:50 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Friday, June 16, 2006 on one page

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