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Friday, February 4, 2011

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The Sims Medieval, Dragon Age 2 Available For Pre-Order
3:00 PM | Cord Kruse | 21 comments

Mac versions of Electronic Arts' The Sims Medieval and Bioware's Dragon Age 2 are now available for pre-order. The latest Sims title takes players back in time to create sims heroes, set forth on quests, and build a kingdom. Dragon Age 2, sequel to Bioware's hit Dragon Age: Origins RPG, puts players in the role of a warrior destined to rise to power.

The Sims Medieval:
The Middle Ages come to life with The Sims.

The Sims go back in time and get medieval! The Sims Medieval takes The Sims into the Middle Ages with all new features, new graphics and new ways to play. For the first time, players can create heroes, venture on quests, and build up a kingdom. In an ancient land of adventure, drama and romance, players will be able to get medieval like never before.

Introducing Next-Gen Sims Tech And Features
  • A world of Sims filled with stories, adventures, romance, drama and comedy
  • Enhanced environment and character graphics, lighting, and gameplay
Rich Dramatic Medieval Setting
  • Experience epic stories of the age, full of drama, fantasy, conflict, comedy, romance, and intrigue
New Features: Heroes, Quests, Kingdom-Building
  • Create Heroes - Build up their skills and send them on epic quests
  • Quests - Drive your kingdom's story - Good or evil, cruel or kind, romantic or warlike
  • Build a Kingdom - Start with an empty field and build up your kingdom, deciding its ultimate ambition and working to achieve its destiny
Other Features
  • Achievement system – Be rewarded you for your skill in reaching your kingdom ambitions and completing your quests.
  • Magic - Your wizard will learn a variety of powerful spells that will help him complete quests and carry out his duties to the kingdom.
  • Crafting system - Your blacksmith will forge weapons of varying quality you’re your physician will create cures for a variety of ailments.
  • Diplomatic system - Negotiate treaties, conduct trade or declare war on surrounding kingdoms.
  • Fishing - Yes, there is fishing.
  • Mac OS X 10.5.8 Leopard or higher
  • Intel Core Duo Processor
  • 2 GB RAM
  • At least 5.3 GB of hard drive space, with at least 1 GB additional space for custom content and saved games
  • ATI X1600 or Nvidia 8600 GT with 256 MB of Video RAM
  • Keyboard and mouse
    NOTE: This game will not run on PowerPC (G3/G4/G5) based Mac systems, or the GMA class of integrated video cards.
Dragon Age 2
Experience the epic sequel to the 2009 Game of the Year from the critically acclaimed makers of Dragon Age: Origins and Mass Effect 2. You are one of the few who escaped the destruction of your home. Now, forced to fight for survival in an ever-changing world, you must gather the deadliest of allies, amass fame and fortune, and seal your place in history. This is the story of how the world changed forever. The legend of your Rise to Power begins now.
  • Embark upon an all-new adventure that takes place across an entire decade and shapes itself around every decision you make.
  • Determine your rise to power from a destitute refugee to the revered champion of the land.
  • Think like a general and fight like a Spartan with dynamic new combat mechanics that put you right in the heart of battle whether you are a mage, rogue, or warrior.
  • Go deeper into the world of Dragon Age with an entirely new cinematic experience that grabs hold of you from the beginning and never lets go.
  • Discover a whole realm rendered in stunning detail with updated graphics and a new visual style.
Pre-Purchase Now To Receive Two Special In-Game Items!
The core of this blade is old. As old as the first smiths who sought a way to battle the nightmares from the land beyond. It has fought the demonic hosts in countless battles. Sometimes it has been held high in triumphant victory. Other times, it has lain broken besides its dying owner. But after every defeat it has always been reclaimed, reforged, and made stronger. Fadeshear has passed through many hands before yours. Now it is your turn to make the demons of the Fade pay for crossing the Veil into the waking world.
  • Improves with each level-up
  • additional damage vs. demons and undead
At the height of the Summer War all of Orlais was embroiled in fierce battles. Over the course of the war dozens of contenders for the Imperial Throne emerged – most long forgotten except as footnotes in scholarly tomes. But everyone remembers the gallant young lord Emile Deveraux, “The Golden Prince”. Thought outnumbered at every turn, he racked victory upon victory culminating in the Seventh Battle of Roses. While wearing this shield he broke through his uncle’s vanguard to win the day. He never knew the taste of defeat, instead meeting his end at the hands of a jealous lover in the dead of night.
  • 2 rune slots
  • Adds to health
  • Adds to % XP gain
Bonus Content: The Black Emporium
Nestled deep under Kirkwall, you'll find a market with a curious collection of items, some for sale, some for free, and ranging from the mundane to the mysterious! One artifact can even transform your very body, face, hair, eyes—all new! We've even granted you your very own mabari war hound to call to your side with a whistle—a boon in battle and a beloved pet at home. Visit the Black Emporium today, and you’ll be the envy of adventurers everywhere. Your invitation awaits!
  • A magic item store that has some of the best equipment you'll find in the game. It’s restocked with better items as you progress through the story.
  • A loyal mabari hound that fights at your side in battle.
  • The "Mirror of Transformation". Gaze into it and you can change your very appearance. Hair, eyes, tattoos, and more can be changed with the click of a button.
  • A crafting store which sells powerful unique recipes.
  • Explore the Black Emporium and uncover its strange secrets and lore. Be sure to see its strange proprietor. It should prove most… memorable.
  • Mac OS X 10.6.6 Snow Leopard or greater
  • 1.86 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo or better
  • 2 GB or greater
  • 9 GB of hard drive space required
  • ATI HD2600, NVIDIA 9400, or better graphics card with at least 256 MB of dedicated VRAM
  • Keyboard and mouse
    NOTE: Video cards not supported: Intel GMA series, Nvidia 7x00 series, AMD 1x00 series, AMD 2400
Both titles come to the Mac courtesy of TransGaming and its Cider Portability Engine, and will release simultaneously with the Windows versions. The Sims Medieval is scheduled for a March 22 release and costs $49.99 to pre-order. Dragon Age 2 will be released on March 8 and costs $59.99.

Learn more at the links below.

Electronic Arts
The Sims Medieval
Dragon Age 2
Buy The Sims Medieval
Buy Dragon Age 2

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Wolfire Says Counterfeit Lugaru Selling On Apple's App Store
6:00 AM | IMG News | 8 comments

In a recent blog post Wolfire Games has alleged that a group of developers is illegaly selling a copy of its Lugaru action game on Apple's Mac App Store. The official Lugaru HD is available for $9.99, while the version Wolfire says is counterfeit is being sold for only $0.99. Wolfire goes on to explain that the 99 cent Lugaru is the open source build of the game originally included with the Humble Indie Bundle, and expresses concern with Apple's response to the issue.

From Wolfire's Blog

You may recall that two weeks ago we added Lugaru HD to the Mac App Store for $9.99 (the same price as on Steam, our own site, and all other distribution channels). You can imagine our surprise when we saw it listed on the Mac store for only $0.99! When we looked into it further, we saw that it was uploaded and sold by someone we had never heard of (using the pseudonym of "iCoder" / "Michael Latour") and had the name "Lugaru" instead of our "Lugaru HD".

This is a kind of software fraud we've never even heard of: a pirate simply downloading the app and resubmitting it to the same distribution channel at a lower price. We immediately emailed Apple explaining the situation, expecting them to quickly investigate the situation, shut down the fraudulent app, and follow up with us. We started this process a few days ago, and haven't heard back from Apple yet.

While piracy is a fact of life for all game developers, this Mac app store scam is a different beast entirely. Apple is billing the Mac App Store as the place to buy Mac software. It is auto-installed in your dock. It is listed in the Apple menu. We expect pirated copies of games to be available in shady corners of the internet, but not in well-known digital distribution channels with famously long review processes.
Read the full post at the link below.

Wolfire Blog: Lugaru App Store Troubles
Wolfire Software
Buy Lugaru

Quake Live Update Adds Premium Maps
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

id Software recently announced a new update for Quake Live, the company's browser based first person shooter. Among other things the update includes 3 new premium maps for players to enjoy. Based on the Quake III engine, the game challenges players to master their shooting and dodging skills as they battle with others.

Premium Maps Added:
  • Concrete Palace (Duel):
    From the Pawel Chrapka, author of "Leviathan" and "Dreadful Place", comes a new creation inspired by one of his earlier works. Concrete Palace is a masterful midsized duel arena with one primary atrium connected to itself by a slew of teleporters and small halls.

  • Dies Irae (TDM):
    Aptly named for the thirteenth century Latin hymn (Day of Wrath) and also from Pawel Chrapka, Dies Irae is a superb Team Deathmatch, Clan Arena, and FreezeTag arena. The level encompasses a large central hub room that is home to Quad, a floating platform, and a teleporter exit that has been caged off prior to opening. Great fun, recommended for 8-10 players.

  • Skyward (CTF):Based on an original open-sourced design by the Q3 Community mapper 'ButterB', Skyward is a clean and stylish 'space map' set high up in the sky. There three elaborate floating platforms set the stage for a well-balanced mix of cover and open-air combat. With plenty of armor, rockets, and plasma at your disposal, the railgun plays a much smaller role in Skyward combat than typical for a space map, leading to more close range fighting while still having to worry about long range enemy sniper fire. Recommended for 4-8 players.
Learn more about all the latest updates at the link below.

Quake Live Premium Pak 6 Update
id Software
Quake Live

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Two Worlds II Reviewed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Worthplaying recently published a new review of Two Worlds II, the fantasy RPG from Reality Pump. The game sends players to the unexplored land of Eastern Antaloor and features detailed graphics, an active combat system, and a complex storyline. Worthplaying gave the game a score of 7 out of 10.

From the review:

The mechanics behind improving your character are extensive, so if you love poring over a character sheet of abilities and skills, this is the game for you. There are also people called Soulpatchers, who can even reset all of your point contributions to start over again — for a price, of course. If that archer build isn't working out, you can try something different for a very modest fee. Min/maxers will probably fall in love with this option.

Experience is earned with every kill and quest completed, and this eventually translates into levels. These give you a number of attribute points to power up traits such as strength, willpower (magic) and precision (archery). Skill points are also awarded, allowing you to improve your character's proficiency with certain abilities. Adding more skill points to "Retribution," for example, raises your chance of inflicting critical damage on enemies. However, unlike attributes, not all of your skills are available from the outset. Books must be found or purchased to unlock some desired skills.

Most of magic's disciplines are also locked until you find the right tomes, so saving skill points — or visiting a Soulpatcher — is very useful in this regard. The system also requires you to build your own spells using the card system, which was introduced in the first game. Discovering different cards and then combining them for effect lets you create a repertoire of spells. It's also not quite as overpowered as it had been in the first game, though it can still be quite effective with enough skill and the right cards. Magic also draws from a well of regenerating mana, regenerative rate of which can also be improved with enough skill points.
Visit the page below to read more.

Worthplaying: Two Worlds II Review
Two Worlds II
Buy Two Worlds II

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Darkest of Days And AI War: Fleet Command Now At MGS
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story recently added two new titles to its roster of digital download products. Virtual Programming's Darkest of Days and Arcen Games's AI War: Fleet Command are now available for purchase.

Darkest of Days follows the adventures of Alexander Morris, a soldier who must hop through time to protect specific people at key points in history in an effort to preserve the space-time continuum. AI War: Fleet Command challenges players to defeat AI enemies in fierce space combat.

Darkest of Days:
Have you ever wondered what could happen if time travel was a reality? Have you ever thought about the possibility of going back in time to rewrite history for the better? That possibility is a reality in Darkest of Days, where players will travel back and forth through the annals of time to relive some of mankind's most dire hours.

By fighting through terrible events such as The Battle of Antietam, the bloodiest conflict of the Civil War, and both World War I and II, the player will attempt to save certain key individuals who were never meant to become involved in these truly monstrous events and thereby change human history for the better.


  • Brand New Engine: The dedicated team at 8monkey Labs has created an all-new, groundbreaking game engine known as Marmoset. The Marmoset engine not only breaks from the all-too present Unreal engine FPS clones flooding the market, but also allows for some amazing graphical capabilities. You'll fight through epic battles filled with literally hundreds of NPCs on the screen at the same time, all with an advanced AI and all without a hint of graphical slowdown and all set against wide-open environments that are lushly detailed and dynamically lighted.
  • Compelling Storyline: Darkest of Days is a compelling, action-packed first-person shooter to be sure, but it's not just mindless run-and-gun, blow 'em up gameplay. You'll have to not only think about how to approach certain key battles and situations, but you'll also have to take care when fighting — certain key people that were never meant to die will be marked with a special blue aura. If you kill them, you'll face dire consequences…
  • Wreak Havoc with Future Weapons in Antiquity: Something nearly every gamer that's ever played a shooter based in the past has always wanted is the ability to bring a futuristic weapon back through history and kick some major butt. How differently would Custer's last stand have turned out if the General was equipped with an M-16 assault rifle? You'll be able to answer questions like this in Darkest of Days. While not every battle and situation will allow you to wield weapons from the future, there will be plenty of opportunities for you to unleash futuristic fury on your unsuspecting foes.
AI War: Fleet Command:
"You are outgunned. You are massively outnumbered. You must win." These are your orders.

Humanity has already fought its war against the machines -- and lost. AI death squads stand watch over every planet and every wormhole, the few remaining human settlements are held captive in orbiting bubbles, and the AIs have turned their attention outward, away from the galaxy, to alien threats or opportunities unknown.

This inattention is our only hope: a small resistance, too insignificant even to be noticed by the AI central command, has survived. These are the forces you will command. The AI subcommanders will fight you to the death when they see you -- but your glimmer of opportunity comes from quietly subduing those subcommanders without alerting central processing to the danger until it's too late.

You do have a few things going in your favor. Your ships are much faster. You have safe AI routines to automate defenses and mining outposts. You have production techniques that can churn out fully-outfitted unmanned fighters in seconds. There will never be more than a few thousand of your ships versus tens of thousands of theirs, but through careful strategy you must somehow reach and destroy the heavily-guarded AI cores.

Go forth into the galaxy, steal AI technology, recapture those planets you must in order to achieve your ends, and save what remains of humanity. But draw too much attention to yourself, and the full might of the AI overlords will come crashing down.

  • Space-based RTS, single player or up to 8 player co-op.
  • Powerful emergent AI that retreats, probes defenses, and surprises even veterans with intelligent tactics.
  • 30,000+ ships at a time on 10-120 simultaneous planetary battlefields.
  • Different Every Time: 16 billion procedural maps, each with specific units.
  • A focus on deep strategy with nearly no micromanagement.
Darkest of Days is available for $39.95 (USD), while AI War: Fleet Command costs $19.99 (USD). For more information follow the links below.

Virtual Programming
Darkest of Days
Arcen Games
AI War: Fleet Command
Buy Darkest of Days
Buy AI War: Fleet Command

Mac Games News for Thursday, February 3, 2011

Avadon: The Black Fortress Previewed6:00 AM
Life As A Female Gamer6:00 AM
The Sims 3 Outdoor Stuff Pack Available6:00 AM
Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell System Requirements Revealed6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Thursday, February 3, 2011 on one page

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