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Wednesday, September 12, 2007

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Apsyr Announces Guitar Hero III Mac
7:10 AM | Tuncer Deniz | 29 comments

Aspyr Media, in partnership with Activision, today announced that the third iteration of the wildly popular Guitar Hero franchise, Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock, will be available to Mac and PC gamers for the first time ever this fall. Being developed and published exclusively by Aspyr, the PC and Mac versions will match their console counterparts with explosive new content and features including a multiplayer action-inspired battle mode, grueling boss battles, a host of exclusive unlockable content and visually stunning rock venues.

With more than 70 songs in the set list, and more original master
tracks than ever before, players will be able to shred from many of the
freshest and hottest artists today, along with many of the most popular rock
songs ever recorded. Expanded online multiplayer game modes will also allow
PC and Mac enthusiasts to rip head-to-head against players around the world
and across either platform, raising the level of competition for true
legendary rock status.

“Working with such a wildly successful franchise and helping to strengthen
an already powerful brand has us feeling like rock stars ourselves, only
without the fame, money or musical talent,” said Ted Staloch, Executive Vice
President, Publishing for Aspyr. “But even without Slash’s chops, we still
have what it takes to bring the best music game on the planet to PC and Mac
gamers. Aspyr’s expertise in developing and publishing for these platforms
means that we will deliver a game that wails just as hard as it does on
consoles but feels natural on this audience’s chosen platform.”

“Providing the option for our fans to play Guitar Hero at their desk or on a
laptop on the go is incredibly exciting, and we’re thrilled to now offer the
ability to rock out literally anywhere and everywhere,” said Dusty Welch,
head of publishing at RedOctane. “PC and Mac gamers can now shred as hard as
their console counterparts do, and it’s a great opportunity to help promote
musicianship and expand the growing number of Guitar Hero fans worldwide.”
Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock on PC and Mac is rated T for Teen by the ESRB, and will be available this fall.

Aspyr Media
Buy Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock

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Inside Mac Games Reviews Sweetopia
7:46 AM | Marcus Albers | Comment on this story

Inside Mac Games has posted a review of the candy-shooter Sweetopia from PlayFirst. This Zuma clone features colorful graphics and fast blasting action. Here's a clip from the review:

One should expect the graphics of an arcade game set in a candy factory to be vivid and animated. Sweetopia delivers. Each level is chock-full of multi-colored candy balls, twisting, snake-like conveyor belt layouts, and enough sparkles to delight any kindergarten art teacher. Simply put, there is a lot going on in the playing arena. As a result, the harmonious relationship between form and function really shines. The tantalizing visual appeal of Sweetopia not only draws one into the game, but it also contributes to its complexity. While manning the candy launcher and prioritizing which chains to break, the player is easily distracted by the visual carnival before him.
Read the rest of the review by following the link below.

IMG Review of Sweetopia
Buy Sweetopia

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The Broken Hourglass: Fetish, Chapter 2
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

A new Planewalker Games informational update for the upcoming RPG, The Broken Hourglass, is now available. This time Planewalker introduces the next chapter of a two-part story set in Mal Nassrin, the location of the game. The tale, entitled "Fetish", is a look at a day in the life of young Anikka, a healer's apprentice.

Anikka straightened slowly, her fingers finding the little brooch in her pocket.  She held it grimly and took a deep breath.  "Wrong, Dani," she said.  "You're wrong, and you won't last."  Not like her. Anikka would thrive.  Her luck would change, like snakeskin.  She straightened her robe, flicking the hem unnecessarily, spending time to find her calm.  Finally, she stopped when she realized her fidgeting was failing Master Gideon with every moment. That thought was like a hard hand shoving her forward, and she sprinted the last few blocks to the temple.

Still, the feeling of being watched trailed her like the sound of her footsteps.  It was Danika, that was all.  Danika and the coin she'd not given her.  It was not the other thing, the thing of warm parchment skin that would sink obsidian-boned fingers into her flesh like a horse's hoof sinking into mud.  She smiled nervously, feeling the breeze cold on her teeth as she sucked in air and blew it out gustily.
Head over to the site below to read the rest.

Fetish, Chapter 2
The Broken Hourglass

Online Games Revenue Set To Grab A Third Of The Action
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

A recent research paper published by Strategy Analytics suggests that the growing MMO and digital distribution markets are on track to account for 30% of all game industry revenue by the year 2011. The report also notes that total game revenues will see continued growth in the next five years.

In terms of revenue, the online games category is currently the largest category out of the three main online entertainment markets (music, games and video). Strategy Analytics estimates that the global online games market generated $3.8 billion in 2006 and projects that the market will grow with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25.2% in the 2007–2011 forecast period to reach $US 11.8 billion and represent approximately one third of the total games software market by 2011.

“The rapid growth of the addressable market for digital distribution of both PC and Console games will help clear the way for distribution of mainstream hit titles which has up to now been restricted to the physical retail channel,” comments Martin Olausson, Director of Digital Media Research at Strategy Analytics.

“The main driver for sustained growth in the online games market will be the continued uptake of broadband services around the world”, adds David Mercer, Principal Analyst at Strategy Analytics. “Additionally, the very lucrative revenue opportunity in both the massively multiplayer segment and the electronic sell through market will continue to attract new entrants into the online games market.”
Click on the links below to read more.

Worthplaying: Online Games Revenues In 2011
Strategy Analytics: Online Games Global Market Forecast

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Eschalon: Book 1 Enters Beta Testing
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Basilisk Games has added a new update to their website for the upcoming Eschalon: Book 1 RPG. The first beta of the game is currently in testing, and a semi-public beta is planned before the end of September, bringing the final release one step closer for interested gamers.

We just wanted to give a tiny update to those of you who stop by regularly looking for news. The first beta release is in the hands of our internal test crew and it's getting torn to shreds as you read this. Actually, they are giving great feedback and the game looks as if it is wrapping up nicely.

Baring any huge problems, we will finally post some information on the semi-public beta test before the end of September. We'll be looking for a dozen people to run through the game and help us get it ready for everyone else. Stay tuned.
Head over to the site below for more information.

Basilisk Games
Eschalon: Book I
Buy Eschalon: Book I

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Aspyr Discusses Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

GameSpy has posted a new interview with representatives of Aspyr Media about the recently announced plans to bring Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock to Windows PCs and Macs. Topics discussed in the Q&A include how the port came about, control schemes, and whether or not modding tools will be provided.

GameSpy: How did the idea for PC and Mac ports come about? Did Activision approach Aspyr, or vice-versa?
Aspyr: Aspyr and Activision have a long-standing relationship collaborating on high-profile console titles porting to PC and Mac, so the idea to port Guitar Hero III was a natural topic during periodic discussions. And while some gamers have a PS2, PS3, Xbox 360 or Nintendo Wii, everyone has a PC or laptop in their life. It was thus paramount to provide access to one of the most popular games ever on the most abundant interface, and what's more, considering laptops, to make Guitar Hero III a game you can take anywhere, with or without your guitar peripheral.

GameSpy: What controllers -- particularly, guitar controllers -- will be supported?
Aspyr: We will be shipping with a USB Guitar Hero guitar controller. The model will be revealed soon. In addition we have engineered the game so that you can play entirely with your keyboard or keyboard/mouse if you so desire.

GameSpy: There's a huge custom track scene for the PS2 version of Guitar Hero II. Will these new versions of GH3 be moddable? Are there any plans to include tools to aid in the creation of custom tracks?
Aspyr: Right now our only focus is porting Guitar Hero III to the PC and Mac and making sure that both meet the standards of high quality set by the franchise. We are not building any tools into the game that will allow users to mod or create tracks and we definitely can't support any altering of the game or the songs contained within.

The full interview is available at the link provided below.

GameSpy: Guitar Hero III Q&A
Aspyr Media
Buy Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock

Mac Games News for Tuesday, September 11, 2007

EVE Online Mac Announced7:25 AM
Apple Games Features The Sims Pet Stories6:00 AM
Minions of Mirth: Patch 1.25, New Website, Halloween Contest6:00 AM
Plant Tycoon Available For OS X6:00 AM
The Sims Pet Stories Ships For Macs6:00 AM
Weird Worlds: Return To Infinite Space Patch Status6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, September 11, 2007 on one page

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