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Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Spiderweb: Geneforge 5 In '08, Leopard Difficulties
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 13 comments

The latest newsletter from Spiderweb Software reveals that the company's next title, after Avernum 5 for Windows users is completed, will be Geneforge 5, the conclusion to the RPG series. The newsletter also includes explanation for some of the issues Leopard users may be experiencing when playing Spiderweb games and promises quick updates for the most recent titles.

Macintosh Users Problems With Leopard
Alas, Leopard, the newest version of the Macintosh operating system, has caused quite a few problems. Some games have corrupted graphics (odd, horizontal lines of dots on the screen). Others don't work at all, especially on the newest MacBooks with the X3100 graphics chip.

Most of these problems are caused by Apple's very hasty abandonment of Quickdraw, the graphics system the Mac used since it was first introduced.

We know what is causing these problems, and we are working on fixes. However, for some of the older games, updating them to work on Leopard will be very time-consuming, since they were all written to use Quickdraw. We have to decide which ones are worth upgrading.

We will definitely update Avernum 4, Geneforge 4: Rebellion, Blades of Avernum, and Nethergate: Resurrection. Versions which are completely compatible with Leopard should be out before the end of December. If you need a new version, keep an eye on our web site.

And What Is To Come?
After Avernum 5 for Windows, we will spend 2008 writing Geneforge 5, the final game in the Geneforge saga. We have begun piecing its storyline together, and we can promise Geneforge fans a truly unique journey.

Click over to Spiderweb Software's website for more information about all of its games.

Spiderweb Software

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Inside Mac Games Reviews Slingo Quest
1:10 PM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Inside Mac Games has posted a review of Funkitron's Slingo Quest. Here's a clip from the review:

Unfortunately, much of Slingo Quest is up to pure luck. The Slingo series of games bill themselves as a cross between Bingo and slot machines - hence “Slingo” I assume. [Admittedly, this is not a good combo for a Methodist. Though Catholic churches routinely hold bingo games and raffles for fund raising, we Methodists still frown on those techniques.] Like Bingo, Slingo presents you with a board composed of five rows and five columns. Various random numbers are placed in each column, much like a Bingo card.
To check out the full review, please follow the link below.

Inside Mac Games Review: Slingo Quest
Slingo Quest
Buy Slingo Quest

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Remembering Fallout
6:18 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

In celebration of Fallout's 10th anniversary RPG Vault has posted the memories of several of those involved in the creation of the classic post apocalyptic RPG franchise. Scott Everts, Chris Taylor, John Deiley, Chris Avellone, Dan Spitzley, and Scott Bennie all offer their reminiscences of the unique game series.

Chris Taylor:
During Fallout's development, there were a couple of bugs I found very amusing. One was when Tim Cain showed new door code. He clicked on a door and it opened. Another click and it closed, but a couple of pixels from its original position. Then, it kept opening and closing, always moving just a bit to the right. The door eventually marched off the screen by itself until it ran through random memory and crashed the game.

The second was the first time the rocket launcher was demonstrated. The object ID number for the rocket shell was entered incorrectly. Instead of a rocket crossing the screen, a dog popped out, ran to the target and blew up. We came *this* close to keeping Puppy Ammo, but eventually decided that Vince DeNardo, a colleague and dog lover, probably wouldn't be too happy with us.

Scott Bennie:
For me, the spiritual ancestor of Fallout was the dog in Wasteland. In that game, one of the earliest encounters was with a kid who wanted the hero to find his dog. He agrees, goes into an encounter with wolves, slaughters them, and discovers that one of the wolves that he killed was actually that kid's dog. Then the kid goes insane with grief.

I don't know if today's audience can appreciate how radical the Wasteland story was for RPGs; it set the standard, 10 years later, for story design in Fallout. From begging kids to leave a gang that you're about to massacre, to the genuine tragedy in Richard Grey's life, we wanted to hit the player with an emotional sledgehammer as often as possible. In some cases, I think we succeeded more than we thought possible. I don't think any of us suspected how attached players would get to Dogmeat... except maybe for Vince DeNardo, our ad guy, whose dog Sasha was the game's spiritual mascot.

To read the rest of the comments click over to the site below.

RPG Vault: Fallout Memories

Brain Challenge For iPod Reviewed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

iLounge has posted a new review of Gameloft's Brain Challenge for Apple's fifth generation iPod, iPod Nano, and iPod Classic. The game is a collection of mini games designed to challenge and train a player's abilities in categories like logic, math, and memory. iLounge gave Brain Challenge an A- grade.

From the review:

Brain Challenge structures its gaming experience into two modes of play. First is the Daily Brain Test, which picks five exercises from the collection of 20, puts you on a per-exercise timer, and reductively expresses your overall accuracy and quickness as the supposed percentage of your brain that’s being used. The more and the better you play, the more the percentage increases; it starts low and your avatar chides you until you improve. Gameloft’s second mode is the Training Room, which lets you access some of the 20 exercises—more are unlocked for practice as you continue to play and train—as well as a collection of six unstructured, simple Creative Mode games. This is Gameloft’s attempt to emulate Nintendo’s inclusion of a simple Sudoku game along with Brain Age; the Creative games are untimed, and designed to let you relax between the formal training and gameplay sessions.

On a highly positive note, Brain Challenge’s games are actually fun, and achieve exactly what they’re supposed to do: they get you thinking, a little at a time, and help you become better at simple puzzle-solving. While these iPods can’t handle the Nintendo DS’s stylus/touchscreen quizzes or microphone-based interactivity, the Click Wheel’s a fine substitute, used well here for both simple touch surface tapping and multiple choice exercises. Like all properly developed games, your failures to succeed are attributable not to poor controls, but rather to your own lack of skill.
Head over to the site below to read the rest of the review.

iLounge: Brain Challenge Review
Brain Challenge
Gameloft S.A.

The Warzone 2100 Resurrection Project Releases New Version
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

The Warzone 2100 Resurrection Project is now offering a new free release version of Warzone 2100. The project was formed by fans of the original Warzone 2100 real time strategy title, developed by Pumpkin Studios and published by Eidos Interactive in 1999. Using the game's source code, released in 2004, the team plans to fix remaining bugs in the game's code and eventually enhance the game with new content.

Version 2.0.8 of Warzone 2100 fixes a variety of bugs and offers some performance increases. It is available for download for Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux operating systems.

Warzone 2100 is a real-time strategy game, developed by Pumpkin Studios and published by Eidos-Interactive™. Although comparable to Earth 2150™ in many significant aspects, it does contain some that are unique. These include various radar technologies, a greater focus on artillery and counter-battery technologies, as well as a different vehicle design method. It was released in 1999 for PC and Playstation®.

The Warzone 2100 Resurrection Project aims to continue the vision of Pumpkin studios started in 1999 with the game Warzone 2100, which was closed source until Dec 6, 2004 when it was let out the doors for the first time to the public under the GNU General Public License (GPL), by its copyright holders Eidos-Interactive™. (minus the FMVs)

To learn more about Warzone 2100 and download the game head over to the site linked below.

The Warzone 2100 Resurrection Project

Mac Games News for Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Macworld's 2007 Game Hall of Fame11:16 AM
Cosmic Osmo's Hex Isle For Mac11:04 AM
Macgametore Offers 25% Discount On PlayFirst Games9:24 AM
Babysitting Mania Released6:00 AM
Bill Roper Discusses Blizzard's Early Hopes For WoW6:00 AM
Eschalon: Book 1 Coming To Macs December 11th6:00 AM
The Sims Pet Stories & Virtual Villagers Reviewed6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, December 4, 2007 on one page

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