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Thursday, March 3, 2011

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Amnesia: The Dark Descent Wins Three IGF Awards
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 5 comments

Frictional Games' survival horror title Amnesia: The Dark Descent won three awards at the 13th annual Independent Games Festival Awards presentation. The game won for Excellence in Audio and Technical Excellence, and took home the $10,000 Direct2Drive Vision award.

From Gamasutra:

“I think that we need to buy another bag or get more luggage,” Frictional co-founder Thomas Grip said upon accepting the oversized check accompanying the Direct2Drive Award. “After three years of thinking we're not going to make games anymore and hating everything and living on noodles... it's totally getting done... and getting awards for it, that seems like too much.”
Visit the page below to read more about the IGF winners.

Gamasutra: IGF Awards
Frictional Games
Amnesia: The Dark Descent
Buy Amnesia: The Dark Descent

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Simone Bevilacqua Discusses BOH
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Joystiq recently interviewed independent developer Simone Bevilacqua his unique retro action game, BOH. The game challenges players to travel through trap filled corridors, solve puzzles, and defeat enemies as they quest to find and defeat the Evil Masters. BOH features 50 missions and 5 difficulty levels.

What's your game called, and what's it about?

My game is called BOH. It's an Italian interjection that means "I don't know" -- so, it's just cool to answer the same question when asked from a fellow Italian! The (rather long) story goes like this ...

In 2007 I started working on an idea that had been lingering my mind for a few years. The idea was exactly the 2D, tile-based, 360-degree-rotating, dynamically-illuminated, field of vision-relative graphical engine which is now at the core of the game. At the beginning, however, I didn't really know how that basic concept would develop and, after all, the engine itself was hard to define with a reasonably short name, so the folder I created for the first files was named "BOH" (and you can see why).

Indeed, I intended to choose a proper name when the project would get a more definite shape, but it certainly wasn't a priority. When, at some point, I felt it was about time, the game -- the project had developed into a game by then -- already featured the themes (sets of data that redefine each and every audiovisual aspect -- I didn't call them "skins" because such term refers to just the graphics, whereas themes also affect music and sound effects), which made the game's identity mutable: that gave "BOH" one more meaning which, together with the fact that I liked the funny side mentioned earlier and the fact that "BOH" lends itself to be seen as an acronym people -- if they so wish -- can have fun interpreting (a few actually tried), convinced me to stick to such weird name.

As for what the game is about: it is mostly an exploration/puzzle game. At first it might be exchanged for a top-down shooter, but that's absolutely wrong! The dumbest thing one can do when playing BOH is focusing on extermination of enemies: that will lead nowhere, because enemies are infinite (as is your ammo, of course) and because the longer one stays in one place, the more enemies arrive! Instead, what the player must focus on is exploring the mazes missions take place in to find power-ups, keys and devices necessary to proceed, etc. That all happens while passing, in a deeply claustrophobic atmosphere, the skill challenges posed by traps, obstacles and, of course, the haunting presence of enemies. In a nutshell, the game is about involving the player through a nerve-wracking, multifaceted and highly rewarding experience (in retro flavour!).
Read the full interview at the link below.

Joystiq: BOH Interview

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Mark Rein Promises Unreal Engine 3 'Still Coming' To Macs
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 10 comments

In recent comments at the Game Developer's Conference Epic's Mark Rein promised that the long awaited official release of Unreal Engine 3 is still coming to Mac OS X. The comment could be good news for gamers who have been wondering if Mac versions of Unreal Tournament 3 and Gears of War would ever see release.

From Joystiq:

We just got out of a GDC demo of some Unreal Engine 3 improvements already available to licensees but, perhaps more interestingly, Mark Rein promised that UE3 on Mac OS X is still coming. While towing a laptop sporting the UDK test game (it's pretty much Unreal Tournament) running on Mac OS X, Rein has confirmed that Unreal Engine has finally made its way to Mac OS ... only four years after announcing Gears of War for the platform.
Check out the link below to read more.

Joystiq: Unreal Engine 3 Running On Mac OS X
Epic Games
Unreal Tournament 3
Gears of War

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Eschalon: Book II Reviewed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 4 comments

Brash Games has published a new review of Basilisk Games' Eschalon: Book II. The RPG sequel includes improvements like re-rendered tiles, new weather effects, new skills, new monsters, and a larger world to explore. Brash Games gave the game a score of 8 out of 10.

From the review:

The graphics are an isometric view point and although they won't win any awards for their technicality, they serve the purpose of the game and keep the feel of the story adequately enough. Sound and music are really good and fit the fantasy bill with impressive flair. Standing in the middle of the forest, for example, your speakers will assault your ears with bird-song and wind rustling through the leaves, as will the bitter chill wind, whipping about your under garments in the frozen wastes, enough to make you cold just thinking about it. The gameplay works well, but it can become a bit boring after the umpteenth battle with a rat. I suppose, without tarring the brush with anyone in particular, Eschalon will appeal to those who loved the classic RPG's of yesteryear.
Head over to the link below for more.

Brash Games: Eschalon Book II Review
Basilisk Games
Eschalon: Book II
Buy Eschalon: Book II

Mac Games News for Wednesday, March 2, 2011

City Of Heroes Issue 20 Incarnates Page Unveiled6:04 AM
Dragon Age 2 Rogue Class Profile, Cinematics6:04 AM
Virtual Programming Bringing American Civil War To Macs6:04 AM
Win A Copy of LEGO Harry Potter6:04 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, March 2, 2011 on one page

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