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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

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NVidia Update For Jack Keane & Ankh II: Heart Of Osiris
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

Runesoft recently released updates for its Jack Keane and Ankh II: Heart of Osiris adventure titles. The updates fix an issue encountered by owners of Macs with NVidia graphics and using OS X version 10.5.5. Jack Keane follows the humorous adventures of Jack as he struggles to solve the mysteries of Tooth Island and his own past. Heart of Osiris continues the adventures of young Assil and his friends.

More about Jack Keane:

Colonial England. Under a certain amount of… duress… Jack takes on a job which will not only cause him a great deal of trouble, but also bring to light the answer to a mystery out of his distant past. A lack of money leads Jack to accept a charter to take a British secret agent to mysterious “Tooth Island”. When Jack’s ship shatters on the mysterious island’s cliffs on arrival and the secret agent quickly becomes a meal for a monster in the jungle, Jack is soon left to cope with the situation on his own.

A hair-raising hunt across the length and breadth of the dangerous island finally airs the mystery surrounding Jack’s past and leads to a spectacular showdown with a dark and deadly enemy and his nefarious henchmen.
More about Ankh II: Heart of Osiris:
Osiris is back! And this time he's in no mood for games. This time he will not fail. This time Osiris will show the world of humans what, he's made of. But the Ankh alone is not enough - not as long as he hasn't found the most important part of his body: his heart.

Life has not been kind to Assil. Only three weeks ago he managed to ward off his death curse. Since then his relationship (with Thara) has hit the rocks and the Ankh was stolen from him (by sinister assassins). Assil sets out to get it all back - and to once again face Osiris.

He is not the only victim, however - there is another: the pharaoh! One moment he sits on his throne, lazy, sluggish and with a heck of a hangover, the next he is a slave in his own quarry - how could this have happened? And more importantly: how is he going to get out of this without getting killed?
The updates are available for download at the Runesoft page below.

Runesoft Downloads
Jack Keane
Ankh II: Heart Of Osiris
Buy Jack Keane

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IMG Reviews Hidden Mysteries: Buckingham Palace
7:49 AM | Marcus Albers | Comment on this story

Inside Mac Games has posted a review of one of the latest hidden-object games from publisher Big Fish Games, Hidden Mysteries: Buckingham Palace. This game has the player crossing the pond to jolly ole' England to have a look around the Royal residence to find some lost items. Here's an excerpt from the review:

Each location in Hidden Mysteries highlights a different area of Buckingham Palace – drawing rooms, dining rooms, gardens, gateways, etc. The levels are filled with objects, but they seem a bit anemic. This is likely because the game is trying to both give you the sense that you’re exploring the Palace and give you things to find. Leaning too heavily towards the clutter of objects and the location is obscured, disrupting the theme a bit. The problem with this approach is that it then means that the game becomes pretty easy.

In most locations objects aren’t so much hidden as they are placed on the ground in a random fashion. Many items are in plain view, with nothing obscuring or distracting you from them. I also found it pretty frequent that the game would list three, four, five objects in a row for me to find… and they would all be literally within pixels of one another.

To read the full review, follow the link below.

IMG Review: Hidden Mysteries: Buckingham Palace
Hidden Mysteries: Buckingham Palace
Big Fish Games
Buy Hidden Mysteries: Buckingham Palace

Monster Trucks Nitro Reviewed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Macworld has posted a new review of Monster Trucks Nitro. Developed by Redlynx Ltd the 3D racing title features realistic physics and stunt driving on a variety of tracks filled with traps, loops, obstacles, and other challenges. Macworld gave the game a score of 3 out of 5 mice.

From the review:

Eschewing raw power and the destructive nature of monster truck rallies for timing, skill, and nuance, Monster Truck Nitro is a different kind of monster truck game. RedLynx is most known for developing Trials 2, a retro-style motorcycle platform game. Like Trials 2, Monster Trucks Nitro has 3-D graphics but operates on a 2-D plane. You guide your truck through a series of obstacles towards an end goal. Each mission presents new challenges and is a race against the clock. If you earn a bronze medal or better, you unlock a new mission to try.

There are about 25 missions in all. They vary from cliff jumping missions to obstacle courses involving moving bridges and falling rocks. Power-ups litter certain courses and are essential to success. One of the coolest moments in the game is utilizing nitro boosters that grant you a short speed burst so you can jump over a line of school buses.

The environments are uniformly desert-centric, but differ in their terrain and layout. There are only two trucks to choose from initially and they differ only slightly in how they drive. If you complete all courses with gold medals, you can unlock a third truck.
Click over to the link below to read the full review.

Macworld: Monster Trucks Nitro
Monster Trucks Nitro

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StarCraft II: Beta & Battle Report Release FAQ
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

In response to fan questions about the date of release for the upcoming StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty closed beta and the next Battle Report, Blizzard Entertainment's Dustin Browder has offered up a short FAQ on the subjects. StarCraft II is the eagerly awaiting next installment in the popular sci-fi RTS series.

Question: "Why hasn't Blizzard released the Beta?" or "WTF have they been working on, I played it at Blizzcon last year and I thought it was done!"
Answer: Solo campaign is under heavy construction as is Battlenet. When these things have enough work done that we know when our release date is going to be with strong confidence we will announce the Beta. Unless something crazy happens, the Beta is going to happen this year.

Question: "Why don't you just give us your target dates if you don't know the final date? We promise, we won't get mad if Blizzard misses target dates."
Answer: Let's be realistic. Our target dates are not something we hit more than half the time. Putting those out there would be pretty close to lying to the fans. We are not going to do that. We want to be able to give good info, not info that we know is suspect. We'll give target dates when we think it is very likely that we will hit them.

Question: When can we have the next Battle Report?
Answer: We were waiting on getting some improved graphics in (some of the new stuff looked REALLY rough). That was finished last week and we are now playing and looking for a good game. Once we get that game the process is reasonably quick to get it out. Once we go Beta, you guys can do these and put them up. When that happens I'm sure there will be a ton of them and I'm sure the quality of the games played and the announcing will go way up.

Question: "I notice that you haven't actually given us any dates...."
Answer: Yeah. Sorry. We don't want to lie about the Beta, and we don't even want to lie about the next Battle Report. When we know a date (for anything) for certain, we'll let you know.
Head over to the Blizzplanet page linked below to read more.

Blizzplanet: SC 2 Beta & Battle Report 2 FAQ
Blizzard Entertainment
StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty
Buy StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty

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WoW: Talent Dual Spec Q&A
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

Blizzard Entertainment recently posted a new interview with Senior Game Designer Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street. In the interview Ghostcrawler offers details on the upcoming dual spec addition to World of Warcraft, a change which will allow characters to possess two sets of talents.

Nethaera: Why are we allowing players to dual spec after all this time?
Ghostcrawler: We really felt like this was a great way to increase the flexibility available to players and encourage them to take part in more aspects of the game. To use just one example, some players like to participate in both raids and Arenas, which is awesome behavior that we want to promote. But, there are some talents which are more useful in one part of the game than another. Currently, players have to pay respec costs and go through the process of setting up the desired talent spec and action bars whenever they switch.
The new system makes this a much more logical process, saving on time and cost and allowing players to easily move from one aspect of the game to another.

Nethaera: Who will be able to use it?
Ghostcrawler: Players who have reached the maximum level will be able to set up dual specs.

Nethaera: How will you be able to set up a dual spec?
Ghostcrawler: Players will be able to visit their trainer and pay a one-time fee to be able to use it.

Nethaera: How do you switch between specs?
Ghostcrawler: Players will be able to switch between their talent specs by visiting any Lexicon of Power provided they’ve paid for the ability to have a secondary spec. Lexicons of Power will be available in major cities, and inscribers will also be able to create a new item that summons one. Anyone can purchase this item, but it requires a ritual of several players to summon it for use by the party. It’s similar to a repair bot in that it will exist in the world for a short duration. It’s important to keep in mind that you will not be able to switch specs while in combat or Arenas. While you won’t be able to switch your spec without the Lexicon, you will still be able to look at your secondary spec whenever you want to.

Nethaera: Will you be able to switch gear easily to match your spec?
Ghostcrawler: At the same time we implement dual specs, we will also be setting up a gear system. The feature is called “Gear Manager.” It can also be used to just swap weapons or trinkets or put on that tuxedo to strut around town. It will not automatically switch your gear when you change your talent spec, but it will allow for an easy gear change between them. The feature may not be fully functional immediately in the PTR, but we’ll have more information to share about it before too much longer.
To learn more about the new feature follow the link provided below.

WoW: Dual Spec Q&A
Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft
Buy World of Warcraft

Mac Games News for Monday, February 16, 2009

Depths Of Peril Beta Patch Released6:00 AM
Diablo III: Identifying Items, Boss Abuse, Item Affixes6:00 AM
The Sims 3 Previewed6:00 AM
World Of Warcraft 2009 Arena Tournament Begins Wednesday6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Monday, February 16, 2009 on one page

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