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Thursday, April 19, 2007

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Ambrosia Launches DEFCON
1:25 PM | Cord Kruse | 12 comments

Ambrosia Software, in partnership with London indie developer Introversion Software, announced today the launch of the Mac version of DEFCON. An online, competitive, multiplayer strategy game based around the theme of thermonuclear armageddon, DEFCON will challenge players' strategic thinking.

"There exists an ever growing group of gamers who are converting to Apple and we want to make sure they enjoy playing all of our games," said Mark Morris, Introversion Software's Managing Director. "It's been great working with Ambrosia and I can't wait to see the reaction once everyone has started playing."

"Global thermonuclear war has never been this much fun," said Andrew Welch, Ambrosia Software's el Presidente. "It's macabre, but plotting for your friend's total annihilation is perfectly satisfying."

The game, inspired by the 1983 cult-classic film, WarGames, superbly evokes the tension, paranoia and suspicion surrounding the Cold War era. DEFCON was an instantaneous success, receiving an average of 85%+ in game reviews and scores of praise. PC Gamer UK described it as 'pure, deep, utterly unconscionable fun', while IGN awarded DEFCON an Editors Choice Award and praised it as 'highly impressive'.
DEFCON is available online from Ambrosia Software's website at a price of $25.00. Head over to the website to learn more.

Ambrosia Software

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Inside Mac Games Reviews The Sims Life Stories
2:17 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Inside Mac Games has posted a review of The Sims Life Stories. Here's a clip from the review:

TSLS seems to be an experiment of sorts. It's the first title to deviate from the traditional sandbox formula, instead hemming players into a pre-conceived storyline, complete with specific goals and resolutions. The question is whether or not this new angle is enough to coax longtime players into a purchase, as the rest of the game just seems to be more of the same. Credit goes to the EA team for giving it a go, though whether or not the idea is successful is debatable.
To check out the full review, please follow the link below.

Inside Mac Games Review: The Sims Life Stories
Aspyr Media
The Sims Life Stories
Buy The Sims Life Stories

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Apple Games Features LEGO Star Wars II
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

The latest feature from Apple Games provides a wealth of information about LEGO Star Wars II, the sequel to the best selling original game. In addition to a review of the game's features the article also includes comments from Traveller's Tales Games' Jonathan Smith. As a bonus readers can peruse a short history of the Star Wars franchise and check out hints and cheats for the game.

As in the previous game, you play through a LEGO-ized version of each film’s story, collecting mini-kit pieces used to assemble vehicles and scooping up studs, the currency of the LEGO Star Wars universe. When you complete a level, visit the cantina bartender to trade your studs for hints, unlocked characters and ships, bonus goodies, and gold bricks. You can unlock over 50 characters and even bring in another 50-plus from the first game, enabling you to, for example, put Darth Maul on Endor or send Qui-Gon Jinn to the Death Star.

LEGO Star Wars II goes beyond the original by giving you creatures and vehicles, such as Tauntauns and landspeeders, to ride during many of the on-foot levels. In addition, the spaceship levels are no longer on rails, offering the freedom to move at will around open environments, such as space battles and asteroid fields. You can even switch between ships in Free Play, the same way you can move between characters in the on-foot levels, and now you can hop in your mini-kit vehicles and take them for a bonus level spin after you collect all the necessary parts, rather than just look at them.
The game should be available soon from Feral Interactive. Head over to Apple's site to read the rest of the review.

Apple Games: Lego Star Wars II
Feral Interactive
Lego Star Wars II
Buy Lego Star Wars II

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Eschalon: Book 1 Purchase Options
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

In a post on the official forums a representative of Basilisk Games revealed that upon release Eschalon: Book 1 will be available both as a digital download and on CD.

The game is the first in a planned RPG trilogy which will send players into massive outdoor environments and plunge them into dozens of sprawling dungeons as they quest to uncover the mystery of their character's origins.

It will be available for electronic delivery (download) and probably weigh in somewhere around 100mb, give or take a few. It will download as a single installation file which you can back-up onto CD if you want.

If you want an official CD version, it will be a few dollars more (to cover duplication, shipping and handling expenses) and you can still do an immediate download. The CDs themselves will be ready to ship probably about 3-4 weeks after the game is officially gold
The game should be available sometime this year, with the Mac version following the release of the PC version.

Follow the links below to learn more about the game.

Basilisk Forum: Eschalon Q&A
Basilisk Games
Eschalon: Book I
Buy Eschalon: Book I

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Nostromo SpeedPad Software Now Universal
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

Belkin recently released updated controller software for the Nostromo SpeedPad, adding support for Intel Macs for the first time. The new software supports both versions n50 and n52 of the device. Designed to aid players of first person shooters, the SpeedPad features a compact design with configurable keys and controls within easy reach.

Belkin's Nostromo SpeedPad n52 is a unique game controller that aims to replace your keyboard for first and third person shooters by placing 14 programmable keys, a directional pad, scroll wheel, and thumb buttons, at the tips of your left hand. Rather than fumbling across the keys of your keyboard, the n52 is an ergonomic and innovative solution to the problem.
For more information about the SpeedPad check out IMG's earlier reviews of the peripheral at the links below. The latest gaming software is available from Belkin's site.

Belkin: Nostromo SpeedPad Software
IMG Reviews Nostromo SpeedPad n50
IMG Reviews Nostromo SpeedPad n52
Nostromo SpeedPad n52

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Enemy Territory: Quake Wars Q&A
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Computer and Video Games has posted the first part of an interview with Splash Damage's Paul Wedgwood about the eagerly awaited Enemy Territory: Quake Wars for PC. Topics covered in the interview include map complexity, options available to modders, and the reasons for the game's long development.

Quake Wars is an online multi-player, team-based shooter which will travel back in time to the Strogg invasion of Earth, the catalyst for the Quake series. The forces of Earth will face off against the evil Strogg in a violent struggle for survival.

The obvious question is why has it taken so long to get Quake Wars out the door?

Paul Wedgwood: The first thing to bare in mind is that it is a brand new title so it's not based on another game and it doesn't share assets from Quake 4. Although it does have some of the Doom 3 backend rendering stuff the entire engine is completely new.

We had a year of research and development where we decided what was going to be the technical direction for the game. We knew that we wanted to build a pure multiplayer combat game from scratch. Ordinarily when you make a multiplayer combat game there are some compromises made because you take a single-player game, start cutting back on the physics, graphics and everything else to make it work across a network.

With Enemy Territory: Quake Wars the goal from the very beginning was to build everything so that it would work across a network. So knowing that everything was going to be networked meant that we can have so much more stuff going on; we can have crazy physics, lots of advanced projectiles, just a hell of a lot more happening.

If we built every map so that it was desert and the physics system wasn't too advanced and all you had to do was capture flags then probably it would be a two year game. But with Enemy Territory: Quake Wars every asset in the game has been built from scratch and that includes the terrain rendering, the megatextures, the networking and so on - so that's really a huge challenge.
Follow the link below to read the rest.

Computer and Video Games: ET:QW Interview

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NWVault Announces 2006 NWN Module Of The Year
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

NWVault recently announced the winner of its 2006 Neverwinter Nights Module of the Year Award. Valine's A Dance with Rogues Part One and Two scored top honors from fans. Gold, Silver, and Bronze awards went to Darkness Over Daggerford, Exile of the West, and Wyvern Crown of Cormyr, respectively.

More about A Dance with Rogues:

>This is the story of a young woman whose world is shattered into pieces on a single, dark night. Formerly Princess of a mighty Kingdom, she barely survives when the enemies of her Lord Father kill her family, her loved ones, her friends. Suddenly alone in a cruel world, hiding from those people who only wish to see her dead, she finds help where she’d least expect it. Sheltered by a group of thugs and thieves, her life now takes a very different line. But her enemies remain the same.
Check out all the winning modules by following the link below.

NWVault: 2006 NWN Module of the Year
Neverwinter Nights
Buy Neverwinter Nights

Mac Games News for Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Chicago 1930 Demo Released6:27 AM
Blitzkrieg 2.6 R20 Released6:22 AM
Macgamestore: Infinite Crosswords Released6:22 AM
Minigolf Mania Reviewed6:22 AM
Sauerbraten FPS Updated6:22 AM
Using An XBox 360 With Your Mac6:22 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, April 18, 2007 on one page

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