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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

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Eschalon Book II: Higher Level Cap, New Spells, New Skills
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

RPG Vault has posted a new article from Basilisk Games' Thomas Riegsecker about the upcoming Eschalon: Book II. The second "peek" at the single player RPG focuses on new features and enhancements in Book II such as a higher level cap, a larger world to explore, and additional spells and skills.

There are various enhancements to the gameplay as well. For starters, the upper level limit of character development has been raised to 30, allowing for deeper builds and a greater range of customization than before. Two new skills have been added (Repair and Foraging) bringing the total number in Book II to 26. In addition, the existing set has been rebalanced, making many of the original ones more functional, and therefore more useful. Since the Eschalon series is skill-based, any class can experiment with any choice without limitations; however new in-game Challenges will reward players who utilize those aligned with specific classes, archetypes or goals.

The arcane arts of Magick and Alchemy have been updated for Book II as well. The total number of available spells has expanded to 45, with new possibilities like Milo's Cell of Holding (entrap a group of enemies within an energy field) and Draw Water (pull humidity from the air to fill your Water Skins) joining revamped ones such as Dense Nimbus (formally Air Shield). For would-be alchemists, the addition of new reagents to the game means a larger range of potions can be crafted, not to mention fresh imbuing mixtures that can applied to weapons and armor, improving their abilities.

Eschalon: Book II's world is larger than the previous game's, covering three different environments from the arctic-like Northland Expanse to the volcanic wastelands of Barrea, with the temperate lands of Mistfell in-between. In addition to these new regions, dungeons have grown in size and will offer the player a unique challenge of their own as deep treks may into them require forethought, with food, water and other supplies. Players will also have the opportunity to visit several towns and villages, including Port Kuudad, the capital of Mistfell and the largest city in the Eastern lands of Eschalon.
Click over to the link below to read the full article which also includes three exclusive screenshots from Eschalon: Book II.

RPG Vault: Eschalon Book II Peek 1
Basilisk Games
Eschalon: Book II
Buy Eschalon: Book II

iGame Radio Announces Logo Contest
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

iGame Radio has announced a design contest for the creation of a new logo for the the website's redesign. Interested participants must submit their creation before the April 10th deadline. The winner will receive a prize package valued at over $500.

Do you read Fark just so you can Photoshop the images? Do you long to enter image contests, because you get to use your Wacom tablet? Do you love your art design job so much that you take your work home with you? Here is your chance to challenge your skills in the Official iGame Radio Logo Contest!

Launched today, the logo contest seeks everyone with an itch to draw, paint, or move those pixels to create the right design for a new logo for the iGame Radio podcast…the original Mac gaming podcast. But you better get started, because the deadline is April 10, 2009.

“iGame Radio is going through some changes with a new website design planned,” said iGame Radio host Omaha Sternberg, “so I thought it would be good to have a new logo, too.”

More information about the contest, including rules for format and submission, are located at the iGame Radio Logo Contest page at the link below.

iGame Radio Logo Contest Rules
iGame Radio

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Class Changes For WoW Detailed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Several recent posts on the Blizzard Entertainment's official forums have revealed details of upcoming class changes planned for the company's popular MMO, World of Warcraft. The informational posts provide details to changes which are scheduled to appear in the 3.1.0 update.

• Hunger for Blood – instead of a self-buff, this ability can only be used when there is a bleed effect on the target. However, it has no stacks and grants a 15% damage bonus.
• Adrenaline Rush – the cooldown on this ability has been lowered.
• Lightning Reflexes – reduced to 3 ranks. In addition to 2/4/6% dodge, this talent now also grants 4/7/10% passive melee haste.
• Killing Spree – while this ability is active, the rogue does 20% additional damage.
• Savage Combat – now causes 2/4% physical damage done.
• Mace Specialization – this talent now grants haste in addition to armor penetration.

• Blessing of Kings – this spell is now a base ability trainable by all paladins.
• Exorcism – this spell now causes damage to all types of enemy targets. However, it always critical strikes undead or demon targets. This change should make sure paladin damage doesn’t drop when going from Naxxramas to later tiers of content.
• Shield of the Templar now causes your Avenger’s Shield and Shield of the Righteousness to silence targets for 3 sec. The old damage bonus of this talent has been folded into Holy Shield, Avenger’s Shield, and Shield of the Righteousness.
• Ardent Defender, Improved Hammer of Justice, One-Handed Weapon Specialization and more have had their ranks reduced.
• Guarded by the Light – no longer reduces the mana cost of shield spells, but now has a 50/100% chance to refresh Divine Plea duration.
• Judgements of the Just – now also reduces the cooldown of Hammer of Justice by 10/20 seconds and increases the duration of the Seal of Justice stun effect by 0.5/1 second.

Head over to the links below to read more.

GameBanshee: WoW Class Changes 1
GameBanshee: WoW Class Changes 2
Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft
Buy World of Warcraft

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FlatOut 2 Reviewed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

Mac|Life has posted a review of FlatOut 2, a racing title from Bugbear Entertainment and Virtual Programming. The game focuses on reckless driving and destruction, allowing players to ram enemy vehicles, smash objects in the environment, and engage in a variety mini-game stunts. Mac|Life gave the game a score of 4 out of 5.

From the review:

FlatOut 2 started life on the PlayStation 2, Xbox, and Windows in 2006, this is an arcade racer with a heavy emphasis on destruction. It’s got three car classes—derby, race, and street—and you win by wrecking your opponents, either by smashing into them or by running them into the destructible scenery. Combining speed plus aggression earns you credits to buy more cars or upgrade your current ones. Completing each short cup series unlocks a demolition derby (smash up your opponents to be the last car standing) and a stunt minigame.

The stunts are quite ridiculous, but mercilessly short and super fun to play over and over. Each one has you smash your car and launch its driver through the windshield and into the air, where you control his sickening flight to aim him at the goal. In one stunt, he smashes into bowling pins; another has him flying through rings of fire; in another you try to get him to flop lifelessly through a basketball hoop. The rag doll physics cause the driver to flip and flop realistically as he bounces off objects and slams into the ground, and the bone-crushing thud had us cringing every time. A Party mode lets you challenge your friends to a set of six stunts, and you just pass around the controller and take turns playing on one Mac. Our biggest complaint is the hard-rock soundtrack (Nickelback, Audioslave, Megadeth, and so on), which seemed dated and a little too “high school weight room.”
Read the full article at the website linked below.

Mac|Life: FlatOut 2 Review
Virtual Programming
FlatOut 2

Mac Games News for Tuesday, February 10, 2009

IMG Reviews Scrabble Journey7:19 AM
Creating Missions In Spore Galactic Adventures6:00 AM
Diablo III: The Value Of Gold6:00 AM
Journeyman Project 3: Legacy Of Time DVD Previewed6:00 AM
Pixie Released For Mac6:00 AM
Toki Tori Coming Soon To iPhone6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, February 10, 2009 on one page

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