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Friday, September 19, 2008

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Spore Creature Creator Updated, Full Game Patch Coming Soon
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Electronic Arts and Maxis have announced the release of a new patch for Mac and PC versions of the Spore Creature Creator. The update offers a variety of bug fixes and additions to the creature creating tool. A patch has also been released for the PC version of the full Spore game, with a Mac patch to be released soon.

• (MAC Only) Corrected patch detection text to display in correct language. Once patched, subsequent patch detection will display correctly.
• (MAC Only) Re-mapped the @ symbol on the French AZERTY keyboard
• Improved thumbnail resolutions for saved creatures.
• Added five new animations, recorded when creating animated GIFs in Test Drive Mode.
• Fixed a randomly occurring system hang.
• Fixed a crash associated with EADM.
• Creatures no longer disappear from the Sporepedia when the save flow is interrupted.
• Corrected the Audio buzzing found on systems with nForce2 integrated audio.
• Updated Spanish and Polish readme files.
• Updated the EULA found in the installer.
• Fixed disparity between server and game complexity limits.
• Integrated the newest save creature PNG.
NOTE: This allows creatures PNGs made with Spore to be drag-and-dropped into the Spore Creature Creator. Spore Creature Creator players who do not patch will not be able to drag-and-drop PNGs created in patched versions of the Spore Creature Creator or Spore.
• Improves overall stability.
The Mac version of the Creature Creator is automatically updated upon starting the game. Visit the site below to read more about both patches.

Spore & Creature Creator Patch Notes
Spore Creature Creator
Electronic Arts
Buy Spore

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FATE Released For Mac
2:11 PM | Cord Kruse | 3 comments

Macgamestore, In partnership with WildTangent, today announced the release of FATE for the Macintosh on its web site. FATE is a fully 3D fantasy action role-playing game where the player takes his/her character through progressively difficult levels of a dungeon, fighting monsters, completing quests, collecting valuable items and gold, and improving the character's attributes and skills along the way.

More about the game:

In FATE you can play as a youthful boy or girl, always accompanied by a little dog or cat. You journey through limitless caverns, dungeons, mines, and tunnels in search of adventure. Each level is randomly generated with countless surprises, magical items, and weapons to discover. Combat more than 100 different monster types, with 400 item types in richly detailed 3D dungeon tile-sets. Gain fame by completing quests and defeating legendary creatures.

• Quick AND Immersive gameplay! Play for 15 minutes or for hours
• Richly detailed 3D graphics
• Journey through limitless caverns, dungeons, mines, and tunnels in search of adventure!
• Each level is randomly generated with countless surprises, magical items and weapons to discover
• Combat: Over 100 different monster types to encounter and battle!
• Cast Spells: Defend, attack, heal or escape using countless magical spells
• Collect: Buy/Sell gathered treasures to improve capabilities, or dare to gamble large sums on items that may contain special powers
• Choose your pet! Select a dog or cat to join you on your quests and transform it into powerful creatures
• Gain fame by completing quests and defeating legendary creatures
FATE requires a PowerPC G4 or later and Mac OS X 10.3.9 or later. A free universal binary demo version of the game is available for download from the Macgamestore web site. The full version can be unlocked for $19.95 (USD).


Custer Is Evolving
1:53 PM | IMG News | Comment on this story

IMG resident desktop guru, Brad Custer, is back with another cool new creation, this time featuring Spore, the multi-genre "massively single-player online game" game from Maxis, makers of The Sims.

Here's what he had to say about his latest creation:

Will Wright's latest venture into the gaming community, Spore from Electronic Arts, has a lot of viewers looking for eye candy to decorate their desktops. I'm not one to ignore the countless responses in my mailbox so this week I head into a new realm to see what can evolve. I was able to make this wallpaper with the help of Electronic Arts and my trusty cable modem. I simply entitled this selection, "Spore", and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did making it.
To check out this desktop, head over to Custer's Desktops.

Custer's Desktops

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Unreal Tournament 3 Screenshots
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 7 comments

In a recent post on Ryan Gordon unveiled a pair of Unreal Tournament 3 screenshots. The screens show the yet to be released Mac OS X and Linux versions of the game. Gordon also offered a brief comment to reassure fans worried about the game's delay.


Unreal Tournament 3:
Seriously, there's no conspiracy. stop sending me email suggesting that Microsoft is paying to block this.
More about Unreal Tournament 3:
Created with the groundbreaking Unreal Engine 3, Unreal Tournament 3 brings unparalleled visual fidelity to the Macintosh, and new gameplay additions including an enhanced single-player mode with a branching mission structure and wickedly intelligent enemy AI make this the deepest, richest entry in the franchise. Also featuring new gameplay modes like Unreal Warfare, two distinct vehicle rosters including devastating machines like the Necris DarkWalker and all new gadgets like the hoverboard and grappling beam, Unreal Tournament 3 is poised to take the Mac gaming community by storm!
Follow the link below to view the screenshots. UT 3 Screenshots
Epic Games
Unreal Tournament 3

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StarCraft II: Zerg Discussion, Game Piracy
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

A new post on Blizzard Entertainment's StarCraft II forum offers details about changes to the Zerg race and its unique methods of battling against enemies. Blizzard is asking fans to share their thoughts on the new Zerg abilities.

One of the distinct features of the Zerg is their fast movement, quick reactions and their large numbers. With the newest changes to the StarCraft II build these attributes are bound to reinforced once more.

Here are a couple of changes to the Zerg:
• Zerg units except Drones can now move 30% faster on creep
• Creep Tumors are smaller and burrowed

These changes will have a big impact on Zerg strategy, since covering terrain with Creep will now be very important. We will see Overlord rushes with mass spewing of creep and Zerg fast micro on creep. The burrowed Creep Tumors will force the other races to get quick detection to push back the Zerg Creep and take their fast movement.

Questions for Fans:
• What do you think of the speed increase on Creep?
• How do you think this change will effect Zerg, Protoss and Terran?
• Do you like or dislike the change? Why?
In other StarCraft II news, StarCraftWire has posted a synopsis of an AusGamers video interview with Blizzard's Frank Pearce. The developer answered questions on a variety of topics including changes to the service, focus on multiplayer, and his feelings about game piracy.

From StarCraftWire:

He also talks about the fact that Blizzard creates multiplayer first, so that the game has a multiplayer foundation, and then build a single player mode in addition to that. Not really new, but a nice reminder that there is a reason why Blizzard games are superior in Multiplayer games. He also discuss about the problem of piracy. Even though it exists for both PC and consoles, it's usually only mentioned for PC games. Blizzard have an interesting way to look at it, compared to companies like EA.

Blizzard Quote: It's certainly something that is a consideration for us, but we're not going to devote an enormous amount of resources to deal with that, as we ultimately feel like we have created a platform, the, and created a compelling experience of a full featured set of functionality that people want to play. The greatest asset we have in terms of combat piracy is our online community and the desire for people to be part of that.

Which goes in line with what Blizzard usually say: "If we make a good game, people will buy it". What this says about EA vs. Blizzard games is up to you to interpret.

Frank also talks about a possible StarCraft 2 expansion, saying that the focus is on SC2 at the moment, but they are discussing it. Also, an interview with Blizzard can't pass without a mention of the Diablo 3 art controversy. They think that the negative player feedback is good, as that means they have dedicated fans. When asked if similar responses were found in SC-fans, the answer was of course "no".
Head over to the sites linked below to read more.

StarCraft Forums: Zerg Discussion Topic
StarCraftWire: Ausgamers SC 2 Interview
Blizzard Entertainment
StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty
Buy StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty

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Diablo III: Havok Physics, Bestiary Update
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

The information continues to flow for Blizzard Entertainment's Diablo III, the upcoming continuation of the popular action RPG franchise. On the DIII forums community manager Bashiok has offered some insight into the arcane workings of the Havok Physics engine, while the game's official website has been updated with a new creature, the Dune Thresher.

Havok Physics in Diablo III:

Bashiok: Our lead tech artist Julian and I talked a bit yesterday about some of the effects and fading, and he gave me some more insight as to how they're working and being changed. We also went in to some of the questions you've all brought up, and so I'll hit some specific points too (with quotes!).

Fan: "...or just disconnecting corpses from the physics engine when they come to rest, and have them fade out"

Bashiok: Aside from my previous comment of this not being nearly as fun (it would also look/feel kind of lame), Havok already knows when an object has come to rest and so they already have a lower cost when they're still. Additionally with the proposed method there is no reliable way to determine when or even if a body will come to rest. In a single player game with a class that maybe doesn't use a ton of skills that interact with corpses in a significant way this could work, but in a multiplayer game there could potentially be hundreds of corpses piling up as they've never come to rest due to all of the player skills firing off.
We're also taking extra care to minimize the ability of a player to impact the performance of another player, as was sometimes maliciously done in Diablo II.
The Dune Thresher:
As I was preparing to set pen to paper to begin recording my thoughts at the beginning of my epic undertaking to gather the world's knowledge together in one tome, the hand of providence tapped me on the shoulder. The news that a rogue burrower had killed a citizen just outside the city gave me the wonderful opportunity to see firsthand one of the more disturbing creatures we share this world with – the savage dune thresher.

Long ago driven away from settled locales to the deep desert wastes of the Borderlands, the dune thresher is rarely seen by city dwellers. Every so often, however, whether due to injury or old age, one of these unholy beasts ventures to the edge of civilization to feast on the frail human animal. When this happens, a professional like Franklin Burroughs, the famed guide and hunter, is called in to put an end to the threat.
Click over to the links below to read more.

Blizzplanet: Havok Physics Forum Discussion
Diablo III Bestiary: Dune Thresher
Blizzard Entertainment
Diablo III
Buy Diablo III

Mac Games News for Thursday, September 18, 2008

Apple Games Features Call Of Duty 46:00 AM
EA Responds To Spore DRM Complaints6:00 AM
Factional Warfare In EVE Online6:00 AM
New Diablo III Interviews Available6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Thursday, September 18, 2008 on one page

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