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Thursday, June 11, 2009

EVGA GeForce GTX 285 Mac Edition Now Available
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 5 comments

EVGA recently announced the release of the EVGA GeForceGTX 285 Mac Edition, a new graphics card available for use in 2008 and 2009 Mac Pro computers. The card features 1GB of DDR3 memory and 240 processing cores, and is designed for use with graphics intensive tasks like 3D games, motion graphics, 3D modelling, rendering, and animation.

• PCI Express 2.0 – Designed for the new PCI Express 2.0 bus architecture offering the highest data transfer speeds for the most bandwidth hungry applications.
• Two Dual-Link DVI ports – Able to drive the industry’s largest and highest resolutions flat-panel displays up to 2560x1600 with HDCP.
• 1GB of onboard DDR3 Memory - View high-resolution images and textures with this massive amount of onboard memory.
• OpenGL Optimization and Support - Provides top-notch compatibility and performance for OpenGL applications.
• 2nd Generation NVIDIA® Unified Architecture – Combines vertex, pixel, and geometry shaders for an overall more efficient architecture.
• NVIDIA® Purevideo HD Technology - High-definition video decoder and post-processor delivers unprecedented picture clarity, smooth video playback, and accurate color for movies and video.
• NVIDIA® CUDA™ Technology – Accelerates CUDA enabled applications using GPU’s processing cores. Delivering more performance than traditional CPUs.System requirements:

• Mac Pro (Early 2009 with 1066Mhz DDR3) or Mac Pro (Early 2008 with 800Mhz DDR2 FB-DIMM memory)
• One open PCI Express x16 2.0 slot (Note: card is double-wide and will cover an adjacent, open slot unless installed in PCI Express Slot 1)
• Mac OS X v10.5.7 or later
The EVGA GeForce GTX 285 Mac Edition is available from the Apple Store for $449.95. Click over to the links below for more information.

EVGA Geforce GTX 285 Mac Edition
Apple Store: GTX 285

The Sims 3: More Than 1.4 Million Sold
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Electronic Arts has announced that The Sims 3 has sold more than 1.4 million PC/Mac units within the first week of release, making it the best-selling PC launch in EA’s history. The game has also generated 7 million downloads of player created content including: Sims, houses, and stories. The Sims 3, available for download from the Apple App Store for iPhone and iPod touch, has also taken the top paid app position in the first 18 hours of its launch.

“With more than a dozen press awards, strong reviewer scores and positive feedback from The Sims community, we are thrilled with the success of The Sims 3 launch and the early sales indicate that we have another hit on our hands,” said Rod Humble, Head of the EA Play Label. “The volume of items created with The Sims 3 and downloaded online is a testament to how passionate The Sims players are. It’s their world now, we can’t wait to see everything players create and share.”

“The Sims 3 for the iPhone and iPod touch soared to the number one Top Paid App position in the U.S. Apple App Store in just 18 hours of its launch and reached the number one Top Paid App position in 37 countries worldwide within two days of launch, making it EA Mobile's 3rd game launched at $9.99 to reach the number one Top Paid App position,” said Adam Sussman, VP Worldwide Publishing for EA Mobile™. “The game's sales success along with its strong critical acclaim demonstrates that The Sims 3 mobile experience is a worldwide hit with our customers.”

In The Sims 3 on PC/Mac you can create lifelike Sims with a unique personality and take them anywhere in the neighborhood. The powerful Create-a-Sim tool allows you to create Sims that are more realistic than ever. Select from dozens of personality traits such as brave, artistic, kleptomaniac, clumsy, paranoid and romantic. With Create-a-Sim, you can create a limitless number of truly unique Sims. The Sims 3 allows for infinite possibilities to design the interior and exterior of your Sims’ surroundings using the Create-a-style feature. Additionally, you can enjoy the challenge of short-term and long-term goals and then reap the rewards! Based on personality traits, skills and career choices, your Sims have short and long term Wishes that provide constant fun challenges and so many things to do and achieve. You have the ultimate freedom to choose whether to fulfill their destiny, giving them lifetime happiness and rewards or not! Register your copy of The Sims 3 for PC and Mac at to enjoy the robust online and community features unique to your game including an all-new town called Riverview that you can download for no additional charge once you register*. You will also gain access to 1,000 SimPoints to purchase items from The Sims 3 Store to customize your Sims’ appearance and houses in all-new ways. Be the director of your Sims’ movies by capturing clips during your gameplay, visiting the official site, and editing the soundtrack, story, and transitions, then share it with the world. See what you can create with The Sims 3.
For more information about The Sims 3 visit the pages linked below.

Electronic Arts
The Sims 3
Buy The Sims 3

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WarCraft III Map Maker Transition Guide
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

Blizzard Entertainment has released a Map Maker Transition Guide for Warcraft III. The guide details changes to the JASS (Just Another Scripting System) map making tools included with the game, allowing map makers to update their creations in advance to avoid conflicts with version 1.23b.

This guide has been written to help advanced Warcraft III map developers understand the changes that we’ve made to the JASS functionality. Please note that these changes apply to only a small set of custom map developers, and most Warcraft 3 custom maps remain unaffected. For those developers whose maps are affected by the changes we’ve made, please review the steps below to understand how to bring your map into compliance with our new implementation.

Note: JASS-enabled maps that are not brought into compliance with the may not work correctly or at all after we release the next Warcraft III patch.

Head over to the page below to read more.

Blizzard Forums: v1.23b Map Maker Transition Guide
Blizzard Entertainment
WarCraft III
Buy WarCraft III

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WoW: Shaman Q&A
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Blizzard Entertainment has posted a lengthy Q&A with Ghostcrawler and the World of Warcraft Development Team. The discussion focuses on the Shaman class in the popular MMORPG, with topics ranging from the Shaman's role in a party to changes in consideration for improving PvP options for the class.

Where do shamans fit into the larger scope of things currently and where do you see them going from this point forward?
Ghostcrawler: The shaman class has a pretty dynamic history. In classic World of Warcraft there was a period where everyone viewed shamans as overpowered. I remember one of my earliest experiences in the Barrens trying to group with a shaman to do a group quest. But he just told me was an overpowered shaman (Frost Shock!) and didn’t need the help.

In vanilla World of Warcraft, shamans at the end-game were healers. Period. By The Burning Crusade, we decided that all three of their trees should have viable roles in the end-game. We also decided that hybrid classes (those that can fill more than one role, such as damage and healing) should do less damage than the classes that could only fill the damage role. This philosophy generally worked, in some cases too well, because Sunwell raids were infamous for stacking lots of shamans.

In Lich King, a primary goal for raiding was to give players far more flexibility in which classes they brought and try to de-emphasize “raid stacking” as much as possible. This meant we needed to share the unique, mandatory buffs among more classes and specs so that, for example, a raid wasn’t gimped if they happened to lack a +spellpower or +crit buff. However, we didn’t want say shamans to no longer be attractive for raiding so we brought up their damage a lot. It might still not be as high as rogues or warlocks, but it’s close, and if you have the right gear and really know how to play, you can even beat those classes on some bosses. No raid worth its salt would turn down an Enhancement, Elemental or Restoration shaman for fear of bringing down the raid.

In PvP, especially Arenas, shamans have never really been a powerhouse class and we view this as a problem. Shamans have always had a place in the 5 vs. 5 bracket, where their buffs are most meaningful spread out among multiple characters. Elemental has sometimes had a niche as the “kill the wounded guy” spec. Currently, however, much of the PvP community is very focused on the 2 vs. 2 bracket, where teams that pack a lot of abilities into a single class tend to dominate. This is something we need to improve for the shaman class.

Shamans have three really distinct roles. Enhancement is melee DPS. Elemental is ranged DPS. Restoration is healing. Once upon a time there was a potential tanking role for shamans as well, but we have pretty much phased that out.
Read the full Q&A at the page listed below.

WoW: Shaman Q&A
Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft
Buy World of Warcraft

Mac Games News for Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Avernum 5 Reviewed6:00 AM
IMG Feature: Inside iPhone Games Vol. 16:00 AM
Rod Humble Discusses The Sims6:00 AM
StarCraft II: Ghost EMP, Protoss Arsenal6:00 AM
The Movies: Superstar Edition Coming June 306:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, June 10, 2009 on one page

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