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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Bethesda Softworks Parent Corp Acquires id Software
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 20 comments

ZeniMax Media, parent company of game publisher Bethesda Softworks, has announced it has completed the acquisition of legendary game studio, id Software, creator of games such as Doom, Quake, Wolfenstein, and its upcoming title, Rage. id Software will continue to function as a studio under the direction of John Carmack with no changes made to the developer's game development process.

Todd Hollenshead, CEO of id Software, commented on the transaction: “This was a unique opportunity to team with a smart, sophisticated publisher like Bethesda Softworks where the interests of the studio and the publisher will be fully aligned in the development and marketing of our titles. In addition, we will now have financial and business resources to support the future growth of id Software, a huge advantage which will result in more and even better games for our fans.”

“This puts id Software in a wonderful position going forward,” said John Carmack, who will continue to serve in his current role as Technical Director. “We will now be able to grow and extend all of our franchises under one roof, leveraging our capabilities across multiple teams while enabling forward looking research to be done in the service of all of them. We will be bigger and stronger, as we recruit the best talent to help us build the landmark games of the future. As trite as it may be for me to say that I am extremely pleased and excited about this deal, I am.”

Robert Altman, the founder, Chairman & CEO of ZeniMax Media stated, “We, along with many others, consider id Software to be among the finest game studios in the world, with extraordinary design, artistic and technical capabilities. They have demonstrated, repeatedly, that rare ability to create franchise properties that are critical and commercial successes. Our intention is to make sure id Software will continue to do what they do best – make AAA games. Our role will be to provide publisher support through Bethesda Softworks and give id Software the resources it needs to grow and expand.”

id Software will continue to operate as a studio under the direction of its founder, John Carmack. No changes will be made in the operations of id Software in the development of its games. All the principals at id Software have signed long-term employment contracts, assuring they will continue in their roles developing games at the studio.
Follow the links below for more information.

ZeniMax Media
id Software

Help Support a Fellow Inside Mac Gamer
6:00 AM | Marcus Albers | Comment on this story

Some time back, one of our writers, Mike, started a personal campaign to benefit his daughter, Marissa, who was diagnosed with a little known but series condition, Infantile Spasms. This is a serious epileptic condition that has no known cure and is extremely difficult to relieve. Mike started a blog, Marissa's Bunny, in order to bring awareness to this disorder.

Not only does Mike write for us in his limited spare time, but he is also an avid Halo gamer. When Halo blog Hawty McBloggy caught wind of his efforts, they began their own campaign to bring awareness. Now, they have started a virtual raffle known as the Fundfax Fairraiser in order to raise money to benefit baby Marissa. They have received some incredible donations from gaming companies such as Bungie, EA, and Hudson. Here's what the blog has to say about it:

The Fundfax Fairraiser gives you, the passionate gamer, a chance to win some absolutely incredible video game-related prizes. For every $1 you donate, you will receive one virtual raffle ticket that gives you a shot at winning everything from a Kotobukiya Steel Spartan 12” Figure (covered in more Bungie autographs than you could ever begin to count) to an EA Sports Pack to an autographed copy of The Godfather II to one of dozens of games spanning across the various platforms. So, you are interested in trying to win some cool stuff while helping out a worthy cause?
Many of the items are one-of-a-kind. Head over to Hawty McBloggy's blog and support a truly worthy cause. You might win some cool stuff, and you'll be helping a fellow Mac gamer.

The Fundfax Fairraiser
Marissa's Bunny

Click to enlarge
Depths Of Peril Beta Patch Available
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Soldak Entertainment has released beta patch 1.015 for the Mac version of the action RPG, Depths of Peril. The update includes a variety of changes and bug fixes.

In the game players take the role of a faction leader engaged in defending the barbarian city of Jorvik. Along the way players venture forth to complete quests and fight monsters while at the same time preparing to defeat rival factions in the race to rule the city.

Here is a list of changes in the latest beta patch:

fixed Cuastic Grotto spelling
fixed localization issue on vendor and bookshelf screens
fixed Ember Necklace not localized correctly
made Stats::increaseStat a bit safer from overflows
can now give food/potions to people from other covenants if adventuring with them
now recruits from other covenants keep their bonuses after death
fixed next target command
fixed treasure map quests to not get out of range of the world
made kidnapping quest a bit easier
fixed a rare item drop crash on Mac
fixed fire mastery not effecting Spontaneous Combustion correctly
fixed sweepingflames, ice storm, chain lightning, ball lightning mastery issues
fixed a way npcs could potentially get stuck casting
Click over to the link below for more information.

Depths Of Peril Beta Patch
Soldak Entertainment
Depths of Peril
Buy Depths of Peril

The Abbey Released
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Virtual Programming has announced the release of The Abbey, a point-and-click adventure game from Emilio de Paz. In the game players take the role of Leonardo who, with the help of his assistant Bruno, must unravel a series of mysterious crimes occuring at a remote monastery. The game features a complete reproduction of a medieval abbey, over 70 minutes of orchestral soundtrack, and an adventure spanning 20 hours of gameplay.

"Thou shalt not kill!"

An old abbey is the scene of a series of mysterious crimes, and only one man can get to the bottom of them. Former royal advisor Leonardo and his assistant Bruno are on their way to the remote monastery unknowing of the strange goings-on surrounding a carefully guarded secret. Yet even before they arrive there, their quest is overshadowed by an attempt on their lives...

A thrilling mystery story!

Having reached the abbey, the two companions are confronted by one mystery after another, and the old walls stubbornly refuse to reveal their secrets. Piece by piece, Leonardo and Bruno uncover a plot that could shake not only the foundations of the monastery, but also those of the Church itself...

"The Abbey" is a mystery story in the format of a classic point-and-click adventure game that has been penned by Emilio de Paz, who, among other games, was responsible for the highly successful "Clever & Smart". Using the mouse, the player guides Leonardo and his assistant Bruno through a faithful reproduction of a medieval abbey. Innovative technologies enable camera angles and sequences which, until now, have only been seen in movies.

Overview of features:
• Innovative cinematic presentation through a new method of combining 2D and 3D graphics unique in a point-and-click adventure game
• A complete reproduction of a medieval abbey, with architecture, works of art, secret passages, and treasures vast amounts of camera angles and scenes in 20 locations promise 20 hours of gameplay
• Cinematic sound: music, effects, and top quality voice output completely in Dolby Surround Sound Over 70 minutes of orchestral soundtrack played by the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra

• Mac OS X 10.4.11 or higher
• Any Intel CPU
• 512 MB RAM
• GeForce 7300, Radeon X1600 or Intel GMA
• X3100 128MB
• 3 GB Hard Disk space
• Internet connection for product registration
The Abbey is available for $19.95 (€19.95, £14.95). Learn more about the game at the links below.

Virtual Programming
The Abbey
Buy The Abbey

The Sims 3 Reviewed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Macworld has published a new review of the recently released The Sims 3. The game adds customizable personalities, goal oriented gameplay, movie creation and editing, and an online community to the familiar lifesim formula. Macworld gave The Sims 3 a score of 4.5 out of 5 mice.

Will Wright, the man behind The Sims, is a smart guy, but even I’ll admit that I was impressed by how true to life The Sims 3 is. You can fully customize a person’s—err, I mean, a Sim’s—life, from housing to a career to relationships, everything down to the wallpaper and everything up to life goals. You can throw parties, go fishing, paint, write, read, play chess, cook, drive, jog, workout, swim—there are simply too many different things to list. Jobs are varied, from being a part time bookseller to being a doctor. The second character I played started out as a toddler and became a well-dressed woman who happened to be a master criminal. She and her girlfriend threw a well-attended party before she went back to work as a hired thug.

In addition to life goals that can be accomplished through interpersonal relationships, leveling up skills, and your career, every day a Sim’s life requires upkeep. The easy to understand panels help let you know both by icon and by text what your Sim desires at the time. Food, sleep, relaxation, etc. are all there. These affect a Sim’s mood, which in turn affects their overall happiness, effectiveness, and ability to be controlled by the player.

While it makes sense (and can even be fun) to prepare your Sim a meal everyday, you’ll get frustrated that, like you, your Sim needs a solid amount of sleep each day. While they sleep (or work) you can fast forward time. The needs of a Sim are realistic, to a point (you can unlock a steel bladder eventually) but you’ll find the gameflow is broken up by everyday tasks a great deal. In fact, that’s one of the biggest problems I had with the game: you only have so many hours in a given day and there’s so much to do. It’s a shame that most of your day will be taken up with paying bills, retrieving newspapers, eating, peeing, and sleeping. What’s the point of a creating a limitless sandbox-style world when you’re tethered so strictly by bodily functions?
Read the full review at the link listed below.

Macworld: The Sims 3 Review
Electronic Arts
The Sims 3
Buy The Sims 3

Mac Games News for Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Discussing The Sims 36:00 AM
IMG Reviews Black & White 26:00 AM
Return To Mysterious Island Now Available6:00 AM
Soldak Entertainment Asks For Fan Input On Upcoming Game6:00 AM
Spore Galactic Adventures Released6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, June 24, 2009 on one page

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