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Friday, April 17, 2009

VP Announces Pipemania, X3: Terran Conflict, Majesty 2
1:03 PM | Cord Kruse | 5 comments

Virtual Programming has announced three more titles planned for release in 2009. The first, Pipemania, is a quick paced puzzle title which builds on the time based pipe connection of the original with new play mechanics, pipe pieces, and expanded game modes.


Pipe Mania builds on the infectious playability of the original with expanded game modes, new themes, new play mechanics and new pieces to challenge players of all types and ages. Pipemania makes the move to the Mac, with versions already released on PC, PSP, PS2 and NDS.

Alfonso Senior, having made his fortune from the original Pipe Mania has retired to his own private island paradise. There’s just one problem! The island is being ruined by cowboy plumbers. The BIGGEST of them all: Buffalo Bonzo is wreaking havoc all over the island. Playing as Alfonso’s children, Junior and Fawcett, it’s up to you to take over the family business and save the island from pollution.

Pipe Mania is a frenetic, addictive, puzzle game, accessible to all ages young and old. It requires quick thinking, hand-eye co-ordination and keen spatial awareness.
The second announced title is X3: Terran Conflict, the conclusion to the sci-fi space action series. Terran Conflict will feature a larger universe, the new Terran faction, and more than 100 new spaceships.

X3: Terran Conflict

It is the year 2938. The long wished-for encounter of the X Universe and the Earth holds both joy and sorrow for the people. Despite flourishing trade, the clash of the diverse races, cultures and life forms creates new tensions, mistrust and open conflict that need to be overcome!

Experience the brilliant climax of the legendary X-Trilogy , and take your place in the history of the X Universe.

• Largest X Universe ever.
• New faction: the Terrans – inhabitants of the Earth.
• More jobs and non-linear missions than ever before.
• More than 100 new spaceships, new ship classes and weapon systems.
• Re-designed user interface for comfortable control by mouse, keyboard and joystick.
• New group management tool.
• Large battleships can be boarded by an outside team.
The final game to be announced is Majesty 2, the sequel to Majesty: The Fantasy Kingdom Sim a unique melding of sim and strategy mechanices. M2 will feature a 16 mission campaign, several quick missions, and the chance to play with up to 4 others on a variety of multiplayer maps.

Majesty 2:

In the world of Majesty, you are the ruler of the kingdom of Ardania. At your service are your loyal and somewhat obnoxious subordinates, who have their own minds about how things should be done. Majesty is the only game where your heroes decide on their own what
should be done and when, leaving you to try to control them through monetary incentives.

Features in Majesty2:
• Real-time strategy game with indirect control - your heroes have a will of their own.
• Play through a campaign with 16 missions divided into 4 chapters, as well as a few quick missions and a variety of multiplayer maps.
• Build the fantasy city of your dreams and experience an engaging world, but beware: monsters are waiting to lay siege to your domain.
• Defend your realm with noble warriors, spell-wielding wizards or wild barbarians. Choose from more than 10 different classes to oversee the protection of your lands.
• GameSpy multiplayer for up to 4 players over LAN or Internet, including support for ranking ladders and tournaments.
• The official sequel to the best-selling game "Majesty: The Fantasy Kingdom Sim" of 2000.
More information about the games can be found at the links below. Keep an eye on IMG for updates on the status of the Mac versions.

X3: Terran Conflict
Majesty 2
Virtual Programming

Westward II: Heroes Of The Frontier Available For Mac
1:08 PM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story today announced the availability of Westward II: Heroes of the Frontier for the Mac through its web site and digital download service, Mac Games Arcade. The game was developed by Sandlot Games.

In the game players navigate uncharted territories, build prosperous settlements and attempt to bring the dangerously elusive Copperhead Gang to justice. When the previous settlement of Hope River is suddenly destroyed, fleeing residents bring tales of the Mad Russian, a treacherous villain bent on stopping any further expansion.

Steer the fortunes of three distinctly different pioneers as they establish Oxbow Bend, a new outpost in the unexplored Wild West, and work to uncover the Mad Russian's base of operations. Gather resources, overcome natural disasters and plot a course through new terrain as you guide your settlers to safety and success.

Customize your towns with over 20 unique buildings, more than 30 luxury items and upgrades, and attempt to deliver justice in this all-new frontier adventure. Stake your claim in Westward II: Heroes of the Frontier today!

* Over 20 unique buildings
* Awards for in-game accomplishments
* All-new Sandbox mode
* Beautiful 3-D graphics
Westward II: Heroes of the Frontier requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later. A free 60 minute trial version of each game is available for download from either or the digital download application, Mac Games Arcade. The full version costs $19.95 (USD) to register.

Buy Westward II: Heroes of the Frontier

Zatikon Turn-Based Tactics Game Released For Free
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

Chronic Logic has announced that Zatikon 1.0 is now a free game for OSX, Windows and Linux. The game is an online, turn based, multiplayer tactics game featuring over 30 unique units, each with their own set of spells and abilities. Players construct an army and face off against either computer or human opponents in one of several game types.

More information about Zatikon:

With a limitless number of possible tactics at your disposal, Zatikon is highly engaging and very addictive. Zatikon includes online player ranking and several game types including co-op, single player, and random army vs. mode. Try the brand new 2 vs 2 mode that is in the final stages of development. Zatikon is constantly being updated with new features and units. Upgrades are also available for even more unique units and powerful armies. Play Zatikon for free and see how your tactics stand up against the competition.

Zatikon Features:
• Play single player, constructed, random army, or co-op games
• Try the new 2 vs 2 muliplayer
• Unlock over 30 units to use in your army
• Unlimited strategies and tactics
• Many types of units including Mages, Scouts, Horsemen, Siege units, Structures and more
• Unique and easily-identifiable units provide almost unlimited army variations
• Available for Windows, OSX and Linux: Buy once, and play on any of these systems
• Frequently updated with new Units and Features
• Online ranking for vs games
• Multiplayer match making
• Global Chat function

Construct your army from a plethora of creatures including the magnificent dragon, mighty warrior, evil necromancer and holy templar. Destroy your opponent with a heavy cavalry charge and demolish their army before they can reach you with their archers, crossbowmen and mages. Use an unlimited number of strategies to defeat your opponents and earn gold to increase the might of your army. Play Zatikon for free and start building your armies today.
System requirements:
• Mac OS X Version 10.4 Tiger or higher
• Windows 98/ME/2000/XP/Vista or Linux
• Internet Access
• 1 GHz processor
• 256 MB RAM
Zatikon is free. Add-on packs are available for $11.95 (USD) and $7.95 (pre-order price). For more information check out the links below.


Be A King Reviewed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Game Tunnel has posted a new review of Be A King. The fantasy strategy game puts players in the role of a medieval ruler who must build towns, defend them against raiders, and achieve a variety of objects on each level. Game Tunnel recommended the game to casual players and RTS fans seeking a "fun diversion" from more intensive strategy titles.

From the review:

Be a King uses many RTS staples: you build various structures to populate your community, and the more people you have, the more you can accomplish. Your income (from taxing the commoners) is used to buy materials, which allow you to create more buildings. You also have to protect your citizens from outside forces like bandits and monsters, etc. The game is divided into levels, which you clear by accomplishing a set of objectives, such as earning a certain amount, building certain buildings, reaching a certain population, and so on. This is a nice addition, since it keeps you on track, rather than aimlessly expanding your empire and eventually becoming so powerful that you're no longer threatened by anything the game throws at you.

The graphics are all in 2D, which is acceptable, but seems a little simplistic. This is especially evident when you see the characters move: the sprites are pretty basic. The game could benefit from some 3D, even if it's just in the buildings and environment. The fireworks that shoot off as you complete a level are a nice comical touch.

Sound-wise, Be a King is quite impressive. The intro and tutorial are entirely voiced, which is more than can be expected from many similar genre games. The music is nicely composed, and certainly enhanced the experience. War ballads and epic Old English tunes are abundant and they're excellent.

While it's a solid game, there are some flaws and letdowns. I found myself unable to do some things that I wanted to; things like build my establishments wherever I pleased. Instead, you can only build on designated plots of land, which limits the level of customization possible. Plus, there seems to be a lot of periods of waiting. This is probably just because part of the genre involves waiting and watching things unfold in front of your eyes. Unfortunately, there's not much to watch, since there's very little to manage. Just a little interactivity while you wait would be nice.
Head over to the link below to read the full review.

Buy Be A King
Game Tunnel: Be A King Review

Click to enlarge
StarCraft II: Second Battle Report Released
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Blizzard Entertainment has release its promised second battle report for the upcoming StarCraft II. The new video features a battle between two game developers on a new 2 player map titled Blistering Sands. The game showcases some of the units and abilities available to Zerg and Terran players.

We finally get the second Battle Report, four months after the first one. The match-up is a Terran vs. Zerg featuring Blizzard developers David Kim and Matt Cooper. The game takes place on a new 2 player map called Blistering Sands:

The starting positions are the bottom left and top right corners of the map. Blistering Sands features 2 Xel’Naga Watchtowers in the middle of the map that overlook a narrow trench. This valley is the only way to traverse the map apart from 2 extremely tight chokes. In each of the corners without a player starting in them there is a high yield expansion with destructible rocks blocking the optimum building placement. See how these carefully crafted map elements come into play in the heat of battle.
Click over to the link below for more information about the battle report. Second Battle Report Live
Blizzard Entertainment
StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty
Buy StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty

Click to enlarge
Geneforge 5: Overthrow Examined
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Game Tunnel recently published a review of Spiderweb Software's Geneforge 5: Overthrow. The conclusion to the fantasy RPG series brings to an end the conflict between Shaper and Rebel with an outcome determined by the player's actions. Game Tunnel recommended the game to fans of the series and dedicated RPG fans, noting that the lengthy text descriptions might be a turn off for some players.

From the review:

The story plays out through lengthy written narrations. These can be a little daunting to the uninitiated (read: me), since they're WALLS OF TEXT that read like the standard fantasy novel. Much of my time was spent reading said narration, and I was simultaneously amazed at the amount of writing and slightly annoyed by it. I found myself skimming, mostly, since it wasn't the kind of writing style that I can enjoy for long periods of time.

Geneforge is a point-and-click RPG, so many of its aspects are similar to games like Diablo. Travel and interactions are all done with the mouse (and a healthy assortment of hotkeys). The combat is where Geneforge shines, and is fairly unique in my opinion. The battles were turn-based, and involved all the characters in the field. There was no separate battle screen, no chaotic "real-time" fighting, or other perversions of turn-based battles (WoW... cough, cough).

One thing should be noted: don't go into this game expecting it to be a looker. Geneforge pretty much dumps good graphics in favor of…everything else, really. It's pretty sparse in the beauty department, but it's to keep your focus elsewhere. It sounds pretty good, but yet again, the focus isn't on aesthetics. There were some good tunes here and there, but they were there for atmosphere and not to create a lasting impression.
The full review is available at the page listed below.

Game Tunnel: Geneforge 5 Review
Spiderweb Software
Geneforge 5
Buy Geneforge 5

Mac Games News for Thursday, April 16, 2009

Apple Games Features C&C Red Alert 36:00 AM
Diablo III: Game Difficulty, Unannounced Classes6:00 AM
Fable: The Lost Chapters Update Released6:00 AM
Geneforge 5: Overthrow Updated6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Thursday, April 16, 2009 on one page

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