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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

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Apple Games Features OOTP Baseball 8
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 3 comments

Apple Games latest feature takes a swing at Out of the Park Baseball 8, the latest incarnation in the sports series. The article includes a sample game season showcasing the game's features, a list of what's new in the latest version, and a rundown of historical seasons players might want to try.

Out of the Park Baseball 8 allows you to easily import leagues from OOTP 2007, 2006, and version 6. The enhancements made to OOTP 2007 are still found in version 8, including a one-stop-shop portal that aggregates quick links to the most important functions. The game’s FaceGen technology allows you to see pictures of your players — you can use the generic ones that come with the game, or download packs of files from the Internet. The best source for that data is PadresFan’s OOTP Baseball Mod Website, which also hosts photos of stadiums, team logos, and more.

While managing a game, you’ll notice FaceGen is also used to portray your players at their positions on the field, as well as show you the current pitcher and batter. OOTP 8 includes an optional warm-up feature that requires your relievers to start throwing pitches in the bullpen before you bring them into the game, as managers must do in real life. In addition, the play-by-play description of the game has been improved, and you can now play journalist and write your own recaps after the contest ends.

Behind the scenes, OOTP 8 sports improved artificial intelligence, including new trading options that allow you to better negotiate deals with computer-controlled managers. AI managers are also more adept at running their teams in general, especially during games. In addition, the game does a better job of simulating players’ careers as you progress through the decades, with an option to import all of baseball history up to the season where you want to start playing.
Check out the full feature article at the link below.

Apple Games: OOTP Baseball 8
Out of the Park Baseball 8

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Colin McRae Rally Mac Reviewed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

Macworld UK recently posted a new review of Colin McRae Rally Mac. The game features over 30 cars, more than 300 stages, nine different international locations, and realistic physics and car handling. Macworld gave Colin McRae a score of 4 out of 5 stars.

From the review:

This ain’t no NASCAR – there’s a lot more than left-hand turning the car on endless oval tracks. Rally races are on twisting, turning roads that vary widely in terrain. And also, there’s no other group of cars to chase or hit – you’re racing for the best time. Colin McRae Rally Mac does let you view ‘ghost cars’ if you want to see how your competitors have done on the same track – these can give you the proper incentive to go just a bit faster around that next corner.

Gameplay is varied, with several modes to choose from. A ‘challenge’ mode pits you against other players in individual stages or rallies, which will extend across multiple stages. There is also a championship mode; and a career mode that lets you battle against other computer-controlled components for the bragging rights to the season.
Head over to the site below to read the rest of the review.

Macworld UK: Colin McRae Rally Mac Review
Feral Interactive
Colin McRae Rally

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Hothead's Ron Gilbert On The Rain Slick Precipice
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Eurogamer has posted a new interview with Hothead Games' creative director Ron Gilbert. The veteran adventure game designer discusses the company's upcoming games: Penny Arcade Adventures: On The Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness and Death Spank, as well as the demand for story based games.

But do gamers want to be told stories? After all, the adventure genre is not as popular as it once was. At this year's GDC, Dave Jones of Realtime Worlds spoke of his belief that storytelling should be left to books and movies. Unsurprisingly, Gilbert disagrees.

"I think that's completely unfair. The main reason games don't do stories well is we don't have good storytellers. That gets lumped in, 'Well, games don't know how to tell good stories.' Well, no, games can tell stories, but you have to tell good ones.

"And you can't just tell a straight, linear story like you can in a movie," he continues. "If you do that in a game, you end up with a bunch of action sequences with a bunch of cut-scenes breaking them up. That's the wrong way to go."

Instead, Gilbert argues, game designers should look back at the adventure games of old and understand how they told stories. "The way adventure games work with puzzles, it's just a wonderful skeleton to hang a story on. I think a lot of designers today don't understand it or they forgot it. Deathspank and Penny Arcade Adventures are going back to those roots."
For the full interview click over to the link provided below.

Eurogamer: Ron Gilbert Interview
Penny Arcade Adventures
Hothead Games
Penny Arcade

Nine Paths To Indie Game Greatness
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Gamasutra recently published a new article from game developer David Marsh. The article details nine methods that successful independent game developers are using to create games and gives insight into how game makers deal with resource limitations.

What are the practical differences between commercial and independent developers? When a commercial company starts a new project, more often than not it is asking: "Who will give us the resources we need to make payroll?"

If the studio is fortunate enough to have some kind of existing leverage, it can ask "who will give us the resources we need to make the game we want?"

When an independent developer starts a new project, they usually ask: "How do I make the game I want with the resources readily available?" That is, if they even spend the time to think about the resources they are going to need ahead of time at all.

Some less experienced with the process of development will forge blindly ahead without giving this much thought at all. But the most successful independent developers work around the set of resources available, without treating it as an obstacle to be overcome -- but rather, a box to operate within.
Read the full article at the link below.

Gamasutra: Nine Paths To Indie Game Greatness

Mac Games News for Tuesday, February 26, 2008

MacBook, MacBook Pro Models Updated1:59 PM
Neverwinter Nights 2 Ships1:59 PM
Apple Games Features iPod Yahtzee6:00 AM
Bubble Bash Released For iPod6:00 AM
MacPool 9.0 Released For Mac6:00 AM
New Website For Nexuiz Project Available6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, February 26, 2008 on one page

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