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Monday, February 5, 2001

Red Faction Delayed
9:29 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

As happens with nearly every major commercial game, Volition has pushed back the released date on their impressive FPS Red Faction. The game was originally scheduled for a Playstation 2 release this Spring, with Mac and PC versions following a month or so afterwards. Now it seems we can expect to see the Mac version late summer or early fall. This was confirmed in a thread on the Red Faction forums by Volition's Mike Kulas, who notes:

The release date for the PC version of Red Faction is officially late summer/early fall, 2001. Sorry for the delay. I hope you'll find it was worthwhile.
This most certainly applies to the Mac version as well. The impressive features of the game's engine, plus reports that the team was still trying to get the frames per second more reasonable, indicate this delay was not altogether unexpected. GraphSim will still be publishing the Mac version of this shooter when it is released later in the year. For more details on why you will still want to play it in the fall, check out ten new screen shots posted at VoodooExtreme. There's also a new preview of the game posted by Console Domain worth checking out.

Console Domain Preview of Red Faction
PC Red Faction Delayed Forum Thread
VoodooExtreme Red Faction Screen Shots
Red Faction Debuts
4:34 PM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story

A new web site has appeared which is dedicated to the genre of flight sims on the Mac OS. While this is one genre on the Mac that hasn't yet experienced the renaissance that other genres have on our platform recently, flight sims are still a big force in Mac gaming. Here is the announcement: announces the official launch of its Web site this week at The Web site is an
e-commerce/portal site for Mac flight sim enthusiasts. The site will support
sales of all leading flight simulation software and hardware on the
Macintosh platform and act as a portal into other Macintosh related flight
simulation sites.

Free Web hosting is also offered for Macintosh based flight simulation Web
sites. This service will be under the domain name and
member sites will be promoted through the portal.

Pay the site a visit if you are interested in Mac flight sims, past and present.

Click to enlarge
Shadowbane Enters Beta
4:18 PM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story

Wolfpack Studio's massively-multiplayer RPG Shadowbane has reached the first phase of beta testing, signifying that the development of the title is nearing an end and the game is in the refinement stage. It is unknown at this time if there will be a Mac beta test (Shadowbane is a cross-platform release) but we'll be sure to investigate the issue for you. A public beta test is also expected at some point, to test client-server issues and the stability of the overall world. Here are excerpts from the press release:

Online game developer Wolfpack Studios, Inc. announced today that the company has entered the first phase of beta testing for their flagship title, Shadowbane. Shadowbane is the culmination of two years development effort and is designed to allow tens of thousands of gamers to play concurrently in a single game session. Hailed as one of the most anticipated titles in the burgeoning Massively-Multiuser Online Gaming marketplace, Shadowbane offers players the unique opportunity to cooperatively and competitively vie for political and economic control of a virtual world. 

"This is a huge leap forward for our team," said Josef Hall, founder and president of WolfPack Studios, Inc. "Today marks a unique turning point on our journey from 'development house' to 'entertainment provider'."

In Shadowbane, players are challenged to carve out their destiny in a world blanketed by political unrest and torn apart by storms, disease, starvation and an endless war. Players can assume the roles of warlords, kings and powerful wizards and interact with each other in a dynamic, fully interactive 3D environment. 

Similar in many ways to a large-scale 3D Chat system, Shadowbane will allow players to connect via the Internet in order to unite, form armies, build kingdoms and conquer virtual territories. "It's not like a typical computer game," explains J. Todd Coleman, Wolfpack's Vice President of Sales Marketing, "Most games top out at a few dozen concurrent players. With potentially hundreds of thousands of subscribers, this will end up looking more like a living simulation of feudal Europe." 

This beta test follows an arduous three month period of internal alpha testing of both the client and the server codebases. "We'll be executing the beta test in multiple stages," explains Keith Brewer, Director of Production Rollout for the Shadowbane title. "The first phase will consist of around fifty users, testing the character creation and advancement systems. From there we'll continue adding more testers as necessary to achieve the specific goals we have for each phase."

We're sure many PC news sites will be in on the beta test and will be releasing many more details and screen shots of this game in the near future. For more information on this tite, visit the Shadowbane web site. Shadowbane will be published by Gathering of Developers for Mac and PC later this year.

Shadowbane Public Beta Press Release
Shadowbane Web Site
Wolfpack Studios

Monkey Shines 2: Gorilla Warfare is GM
12:13 PM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story

Mac shareware publisher Fantasoft has announced that the long-awaited sequel to their platform title Monkey Shines has reached Golden Master Status. Gorilla Warfare features 16-bit color, tons of new animation and sound and many side-scrolling levels to conquer. Here are details from the press release:

-Flying Mikros Interactive and Fantasoft are
happy to announce that Gorilla Warfare has finally gone golden
master. In addition there is a new Demo available for download. You
can order the game directly from Fantasoft at the website.

Features include:

* Multiple layer parallax scrolling

* 16 bit color

* Smooth 30 frames per second

* A new hero, Darwin, with a lot of new tricks

* Ballistic bananas to take out your enemies

* And much much more!

Minimum Requirements:

Although Gorilla Warfare will run on any Power Macintosh, we suggest
a minimum 200 MHz 604e and Rage Pro Graphics chip or card and 15 MB
of available RAM. Minimum System configuration is Mac OS 7.5.3.
Gorilla Warfare requires a PowerPC processor and will not run on
older (68030, 68040) Macs.

For more information, screen shots and a downloadable demo, visit the Gorilla Warfare web site. Make sure you visit the Fantasoft web site as well and examine their selection of other shareware titles.

Gorilla Warfare

Warren Spector Interview at VoodooExtreme
11:59 AM | Lucian Fong | Comment on this story

VoodooExtreme has published a short but informative interview with Warren Spector, the man behind Deus Ex and the upcoming Deus Ex 2. The interview covers how Spector got started in the gaming industry, his design philosophy, and his goals for Deus Ex 2. Here is a bit of Deus Ex trivia for you:

Voodoo Extreme: JC Denton looks a lot like John Travolta. Is that intentional?

Warren Spector: Ha! You're certainly not the first person to mention that and I can sure see it. No, it wasn't intentional -- wish I could say it was!. In fact, when we first started creating the characters for Deus Ex, I saw Matt Damon in the JC Denton role. The earliest concept sketches captured that really well. For one reason and another the models and skins never really reflected that aspect of the concepts but the look of the models was so good, in a Travolta-ish way, we went with it. Now, if anyone ever made a movie based on Deus Ex, Travolta would be the first guy I'd go after to play JC. Sorry, Matt...

Deus Ex 2 is still very early in development, so don't put your mind under any unecessary stress, yet. Follow the link to read the rest of the interview at VoodooExtreme.

Warren Spector Interview at VoodooExtreme

Ernesto Released
11:44 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story

In a press release nearly exploding with enthusiasm, 'upstart' shareware developer Cortic has announced the release of Ernesto, a 2D asteroids game with network play and Mac OS X compatibility. Here are details from the release:

The wait is over. A new millenium
brings a wonderful new game for Macintosh users. Today, Cortic Software is
proud to announce Ernesto, its shareware game that will redefine
two-dimensional gaming. Ernesto is an overhead perspective, sci-fi action
game that places players as space ship pilots in a dangerous asteroid

After a few delays, Cortic now has made Ernesto available for download from
its web site ( The game is shareware; the
registration fee is $20, payable over the Internet. Registering users enjoy
the benefits of additional ships and levels and the elimination of some
undesirable delays that non-registered users encounter.

With a wide variety of weapons and ships, Ernesto offers gamers playing
alone endless action. Ernesto features enough missions and variety to have a
high replay value. Players have the ability to choose among over 7 ships
while blasting enemies with weapons such as missiles, space mines, ion
cannons and laser bolts. Each ship in the game features its own unique
statistics, and players can obtain powerups during play to further their
preferred battle strategy. In addition, players have the ability to command
space stations and other fighters as well as their own ship.

But the real draw of the game is the multiplayer feature, which separates it
from all other games that could be considered a part of this genre. Ernesto
allows players to compete over a LAN or the Internet through TCP/IP and
AppleTalk, in nearly limitlessly sized competitions.

You can grab the Ernesto demo at their web site; the full version is $20, and can be registered online.

Cortic Software

'Own' in Oni
10:52 AM | Toby Allen | Comment on this story

Gamespy has produced and posted an in-depth guide to help players get through Bungie's latest release, Oni. The guides includes a variety of different sections that give information on items you discover, Konoko's combat moves and the weapons your enemies will use against you -- and which you can use against them, of course. Furthermore the guide includes a step-by-step walkthrough which includes screen shots. Here is a quick tip:

Konoko can only hold one weapon at a time, so choose carefully which one you keep. The Mercury Bow and Screaming Cannon are the deadliest, and the Van de Graff pistol and Phase Stream Projector are the weapons of choice for stunning opponents.
The guide contains a lot of valuable information which will certainly help players that are stuck. However, if you haven't reached the end of this game, we encourage you to wait until you are completely stuck before resorting to this guide -- it definitely qualifies as a "spoiler."

MacNN has also posted their own strategy guide; currently it only features the first two levels of the game, but each is extremely in-depth and future level walkthroughs are promised in the near future.

IMG Oni Review
Oni guide at Gamespy

'Majestic' Web Site Debuts
10:37 AM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story

For quite some time Electronic Arts and developer Anim-x have been 'leaking' information about Majestic, an original approach to gaming which promises to provide a truly interactive experience on a scope never attempted before. Using a combination of everyday technologies (fax, AOL Instant Messenger, telephone, e-mail and more) this game claims to be an engrossing interactive experience based on a global conspiracy. While information about the title was leaked in hints and mysterious press releases previously, now the official site itself is online and has many details.

Although the requirements for this 'game' list a Windows PC as the reccomended hardware, after our own research we don't see any reason why this game wouldn't be Mac OS-compatible; there isn't even a CD-ROM to buy, as the game takes place entirely online and is subscription-based. All the technologies used in the game (AIM, RealPlayer, Flash) are entirely cross-platform and other techniques the game requires (telephone calls, fax, web research) are obviously platform-agnostic as well. We've contacted the development team to confirm all of this, of course, but we don't expect any problems.

So, if a game that is based on a global conspiracy and might result in midnight phonecalls from shady characters interests you, visit the Majestic web site and learn more. A preview of the game will happen in the near future, followed by the opportunity to subscribe to the full version.

Majestic Web Site

TopWare Troubles?
9:32 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

BluesNews pointed us to a report at the German news site, Heise Online, which notes financial troubles with the gaming company Topware Interactive. The article is in German, nut rough translations seem to indicate the problem wasn't in fact with the company's games, but rather their other business practices and management shifts. Topware's site currently has no updates regarding the reports, so this isn't yet completely confirmed.

The reason why Mac users might care about all of this is that e.p.i.c. Interactive is in the process of bringing some of Topware's titles to the Mac. Their first efforts include the just-released Earth 2140 demo. Other games from Topware which epic planned to port include the sequel Earth 2150 and the 3D RPG Gorky 17. We contacted e.p.i.c about the situation, and it seems to leave the Mac ports unaffected. Here's what they had to say:

I can not comment on the situation of Topware, however
the instability of Topware will not have any effects on our plans to bring
the Earth series or other of their projects to the Mac. 2140 is in the
finishing states and start on 2150 will start soon after 2140 is finished.
This is good news, as the Mac platform is currently experiencing a dearth of new RTS games, and both will make great additions to the Mac's lineup. We will keep you updated on any changes in the status of these titles. The Earth 2140 demo is available at Macgamefiles.

IMG News: Details on Epic's Titles
Download Earth 2140 Demo
e.p.i.c. Interactive Web Site
Heise Online News Report
Topware Games Web Site (English)
Topware Interactive Main Web Site (German)
Earth 2140
Buy Earth 2140

CodeWarrior Update, No Q3 Help
9:24 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

Last Friday, Metrowerks released an update to their popular CodeWarrrior program for developing software on the Mac and PC. Many Mac users got excited over the weekend, thinking this would finally solve the Altivec issues which id's Graeme Devine was running into with Quake 3: Arena. In case you missed it, he is in the process of adding many Altivec enhancements to the game, and inadvertently found a bug in CodeWarrior's compiler which prevented him from creating the Alitivec-enhanced build. Unfortunately, it seems this update included everything but the actual compiler. A thread at Quake3World pointed this out, and Graeme confirmed it in an email reply to IMG:

There is no new compiler in the CW update, only IDE, Debugger, and MSL bug
fixes. I was surprised they released it this way.
So, this means G4 owners will still have to wait for Metrowerks to release an updated version of the compiler itself before Graeme can complete his modifications which add Velocity Engine/Altivec support to Q3A. The new version of Q3 should also run faster on pre-G4 machines, thanks to the removal of debugging code and other such streamlining. As always, we'll keep you updated as this ongoing situation develops.

IMG News: Mac Q3A Status Report
id Software Web Site
MetroWerks CodeWarrrior Update Info
Quake3World Forum Thread

Mac Games News for Friday, February 2, 2001

MGF Volume 3 CD Now Available5:40 PM
Diablo II Updated Again3:33 PM
Riddle of the Sphinx Review12:21 PM
PetRave 'Petey' Goes Alpha10:39 AM
Neverwinter Nights Q&A10:14 AM
e.p.i.c. Interactive Interview10:05 AM
Oni Key Configurator9:28 AM
New Myst III: Exile Release Date, Requirements9:09 AM
New Majesty Quest Available9:04 AM
Blizzard Transcript, Founder Q&A8:37 AM
Starfleet Command II Q&A8:25 AM
New Summoner Site Opens8:14 AM
Oni for Playstation 2 Review6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Friday, February 2, 2001 on one page

Recent Mac Games News

Thursday, February 1, 2001
Wednesday, January 31, 2001
Tuesday, January 30, 2001
Monday, January 29, 2001
Friday, January 26, 2001

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