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Wednesday, January 2, 2008

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Make Bouncy Bouncy Released
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 15 comments

ByDesign Games recently announced the release of Make Bouncy Bouncy, a new casual puzzle title which challenges players to complete a variety of three dimensional spatial puzzles.

More about the game:

Welcome to the world of Make Bouncy Bouncy. That's right! It's a fun new casual game from ByDesign Games that lets you bounce bounce bounce your way through puzzling mazes of intrigue & challenge!

You Don't Need To Be A Game bounce your way to bliss. Together with ByDesign Games, the focus is on fun! Gone are boring "health" meters, gone with "fake money" goals, gone with empty violence. No destructive explosions. No loud machine guns. No unchecked aggression...

Indulge. Relax in numerous spaces of connected & thoughtful challenge, navigating dynamic environments designed to stimulate your focus-center while calming your mind.

Play At Your Own Pace. Have all the fun you want on your own time; use the in-game timer for a quick Bouncy Bouncy in-between your work tasks or on your coffee break; your time is your own after-all! And as with all ByDesign games, you don't need to quit your day job to enjoy playing...

  • 1-Handed Control - easy to pick up and enjoy!

  • Fun For the Whole Family - for all skill levels (you too Mom!)

  • Spatial Puzzles in 3D - easy to pick up, difficult to master!

  • Calm Atmosphere & Spaces - who needs more stress?

  • Variety of Challenges - consider new ways to succeed!
  • The game is available for OS X and costs $19.95, or as part of a three license family bundle deal for $29.95.

    Check out the game's website at the link below for more information, screenshots, and the 7 level demo.

    ByDesign Games
    Make Bouncy Bouncy

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    Inside Mac Games Reviews Championship Manager 2008
    8:33 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

    Inside Mac Games has posted a review of Championship Manager 2008. Here's a clip from the review:

    Championship Manager has once again returned to the Macintosh. With its latest installment, 2008, it brings animated players, and updated ProZone, and rotating backgrounds to the series. The only question is: "Is that enough of an update to make CM2008 worth buying?" If that's all you want to hear, then rest assured that the answer is yes. However, if you want to know why, keep reading.
    To check out the full review, please follow the link below.

    Inside Mac Games Review: Championship Manager 2008
    Virtual Programming
    Championship Manager 2008
    Buy Championship Manager 2008

    Phase On Gamasutra Best Of '07 List
    6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

    Gamasutra recently released its Best Of 2007 list, a lengthy examination of the games, companies, and trends that stood out last year. Phase for iPod, a game that challenges players to keep up with the rhythm of the music, was named the most overlooked title of 2007. Phase was developed by Harmonix, creators of the Guitar Hero franchise.

    At the top of the list, though, sits Harmonix's little-sister to Rock Band 's big-daddy that, perhaps simply by nature of its platform and the timing of its release (just a few weeks before Rock Band took the stage), seems to have gone generally yet-unnoticed by the industry at large.

    Even driven as it is without the human touch given to the rest of Harmonix's output, its note-chart algorithms show a near Turing-test-passing understanding of what drives music and connects it to a listener.

    Anecdotal evidence, like the game somehow knowing to place an iPod wheel sweep in Feist's "My Moon My Man" at precisely the same point as her dramatic music video twirl, is just some of the reason that Harmonix has made it a thrill to plumb the depths of music collections.

    Other recent music-based releases have shown just how confidently and skillfully the studio can execute on obvious ideas, with a result that's less about beat matching as it is rhythm-feeling.

    Click over to the site below to read the rest.

    Gamasutra: Best Of 2007

    Creating Virtual Worlds One User Made Tree At A Time
    6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 4 comments

    Ars Technica has posted an article detailing the efforts of the Virtual Worlds research group at Stanford University. The researchers are examining ways to allow players to participate in the creation of online virtual worlds. This "crowdsourcing" would give everyday players the chance to create visual items for the gameworld, saving time and expense for developers. The team's current proof of concept software called Dryad focuses on creating trees using an easy to use set of controls.

    It may not be completely obvious why research like this is so important, so we'll spell it out at the risk of over-simplifying matters. If virtual words are to proliferate, one major bottleneck to that proliferation will be visual design. Let's face it: few of us can draw something as simple as a tree well in two dimensions, let alone three. However, if a system could be devised that would allow everyday people to participate in the crowd-sourced construction of virtual worlds, then that particular bottleneck could be done away with.

    Ars spoke with Professor Vladlen Koltun of Stanford about the Virtual Words research group's first software release, Dryad. A proof-of-concept, Dryad lets anyone contribute realistic-looking trees to a virtual world by navigating a "tree space" that's refined by each and every user contribution. It's a technique that Koltun believes can be used to help build entire virtual worlds.

    If this were a narrowly-purposed tool, it clearly wouldn't be worth this much verbiage. But the same math should be applicable to a variety of design problems. "Variants of this approach work for all design spaces that can be represented as normed vector space," Kotun said, "We are still investigating which design spaces can be effectively represented this way, but it is clear that many can be. We are currently working on humans, animals, architecture, and more general plant models."

    So, why start with trees? "We looked at work that was done in the US Army in the mid-90s—they went through tree manuals and encyclopedias and cataloged ways in which trees differ from each other," said Koltun. "We probably should have created 'the Stanford tree,' but instead we found a nice Christmas tree, which is the default tree that Dryad currently starts with."
    To read the full article follow the link provided below.

    Ars Technica: Enabling Crowdsourcing Of Virtual Worlds

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    WoW Idol 2008 Begins
    6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

    WoW Radio has announced the WoW Idol 2008 song contest. Sponsored by Blizzard Entertainment and UpperDeck Entertainment, the contest asks participants to submit their best 3 to 5 minute WoW themed song. Winners will have their song featured on WoW Radio and will receive a variety of prizes including posters, t-shirts, and beta key cards.

    You can submit to us a song roughly 3-5 minutes long based on world of warcraft, we shall be accepting original songs and "parodies" of popular titles. We shall close submission on Friday the 18th of January and announce 10 finalists on Sunday the 20th. The 10 finalists will be hosted by for download and Winners will be announced on Sunday January the 27th.

    There will be 5 Winners, and 3 Critics Choices (First, Second, and Third place), selected by the WoW Radio Staff; 1 Popular Choice, selected by the listeners of WoW Radio through a public voting system; and 1 Worst/Most Embarassing Entry Winner.

    First Prize for Critics Choice and Popular Choice:
    1 World of Warcraft signed Cinematic Poster
    1 UpperDeck "Sword of a Thousand Truths" T-Shirt
    1 Blizzard Murloc T-Shirt
    1 Blizzcon Murloc Suit / Beta Key Card

    Second and Third Prize Critics Choice:
    1 UpperDeck "Sword of a Thousand Truths" T-Shirt
    1 Blizzcon Murloc Suit / Beta Key Card

    Worst / Most Embarassing Entry
    1 Blizzcon Murloc Suit / Beta Key Card
    To learn more about the contest head over to the WoW Radio site listed below.

    WoW Radio: WoW Idol 2008
    Blizzard Entertainment
    World of Warcraft
    Buy World of Warcraft

    Mac Games News for Tuesday, January 1, 2008

    EVE Online Reviewed6:00 AM
    Final NWN Update In Beta Testing6:00 AM
    MacPinball Update Introduces New Table6:00 AM
    Nethergate: Resurrection In Game Tunnel's Top 5 RPGs Of 20076:00 AM
    WoW: Graphics Upgrades A Possibility?6:00 AM
    View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, January 1, 2008 on one page

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    Search for other Mac games news stories or browse our Mac Games News Archive.

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