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Thursday, November 13, 2008news@insidemacgames.com


Wrath Of The Lich King Released
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 13 comments

Blizzard Entertainment today announced the release of Wrath of the Lich King, the second expansion to its award-winning MMO, World of Warcraft. The game opens the forbidding wasteland of Northrend to exploration and features higher character levels, new dungeons and encounters, a new character profession, and the game's first hero class: The Death Knight.

More about Wrath of the Lich King:

Players last visited Northrend in Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne™, when Arthas Menethil fused with the spirit of Ner'zhul to become the Lich King, one of the most powerful beings in the Warcraft universe. He now broods atop the Frozen Throne deep in Icecrown Citadel, clutching the rune blade Frostmourne and marshaling the undead armies of the Scourge. In Wrath of the Lich King, the forces of the Alliance and the Horde will venture into battle against the Scourge amid Northrend's howling winds and fields of jagged ice.

Building on the foundation established in World of Warcraft and The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King adds a rich variety of content to an already massive game. New features coming with the game's second expansion include:

• Death Knight Hero Class: Create a high-level Death Knight character -- the game’s first hero class -- once certain challenges have been met.
• Increased Level Cap: Advance to level 80 and gain potent new talents and abilities along the way.
• Northrend: Explore the harsh new continent of Northrend, packed with new zones, quests, dungeons, monsters, and items -- and do battle with the undead armies of the Lich King.
• "Inscription" Profession: Learn this exciting new profession and gain unique ways to permanently enhance spells and abilities in the game.
• Siege Weapons and Destructible Buildings: Take the battle to another level with new player-vs.-player game mechanics and new battlefields to wage war on.
• New Character Customization: Change how characters look and express themselves, with different hairstyles and dance animations.
Wrath of the Lich King costs $39.99 USD and requires World of Warcraft to play. Check out the links below for more information.

Blizzard Entertainment (add to watch list)
World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King (add to watch list)



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EVE Online Graphics Update Coming Soon
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 8 comments

CCP Games recently revealed a working development build of the promised Trinity graphics update for EVE Online, its sci-fi MMO. The complete graphics overhaul offers entirely new ship, station, and jumpgate models for players to enjoy. A company representative also confirmed that the upcoming "Walking In Stations" 3D space station environments will also be coming to Mac users in the future.

From Macworld:

At last week’s EVE Fanfest in Reykjavík, Iceland, members of the development staff responsible for the Macintosh version of the massively multiplayer game EVE Online debuted a development build of the game running premium graphics for the first time natively under Mac OS X. The developers also reiterated the importance of the Mac and Linux versions of EVE moving forward.

Smithen and TransGaming CTO Gavriel State confirm that EVE Online in both its current release configuration and the forthcoming Premium release operate quite well on Apple’s new MacBooks, which incorporate an Nvidia graphics architecture. State said that his MacBook Pro, running only with the 9400M graphics hardware integrated on the motherboard, outperforms Smithen’s older MacBook Pro, which uses ATI’s Radeon X1600 graphics.

Much of EVE Fanfest’s attention was focused on a forthcoming feature of the game called “Walking in Stations,” or “Ambulation.” It enables EVE starship captains to, for the first time since the game’s release, leave the confines of their vehicles and interact directly with each other. The new features — to be introduced at a later date yet to be named — will be available on the Mac, according to Shay McAulay, QA Engineering Lead at CCP.

“Not releasing Walking In Stations on the Mac would be a huge mistake,” said McAulay. “We’re going to try to launch at the same time.”
The graphics update should be available soon to Mac users. Follow the links below to learn more.

EVE Online Premium Graphics Demonstrated
CCP Games (add to watch list)
TransGaming (add to watch list)
EVE Online (add to watch list)



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Apple Games Features Wrath Of The Lich King
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

For its latest feature article Apple Games has ventured into the new realms of Wrath of the Lich King, the next expansion for the Blizzard's popular World of Warcraft. The article includes comments from production director J. Allen Brack, a history of the evil Prince Arthas, and a list of some of the new features available in the expansion.

Wrath of the Lich King also introduces the game’s first hero class, the Death Knight. Arthas was a human paladin before he became a Death Knight and later merged with the previous Lich King, Ner’zhul, and now you can experience the first part of that journey, as long as you have a character at 55th level or higher. Your newly-minted Death Knights can be members of any race.

While Death Knights begin their careers “doing Arthas’ bidding and doing terrible things,” says Brack, “eventually you throw off his yoke and become your own character.” At that point, you become aligned with either the Horde or the Alliance, depending on the race you originally selected.

Thus even the Death Knights’ exploits tie into the expansion pack’s theme: with great power comes great responsibility. “The Lich King is a guy who got power and became corrupt through it,” Brack says. “Players work toward defeating that.” He also points out that each of Northrend’s zones has a story with a beginning, middle, and end — “We did a better job of that this time around,” he says.
Head over to the link below to check out the full article.

Apple Games: Wrath of the Lich King
Blizzard Entertainment (add to watch list)
World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King (add to watch list)


Blizzard Updates Battle.net Ban Policy
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

In an effort to discourage cheating in StarCraft and Diablo II Blizzard Entertainment has announced an update to its ban policy for the Battle.net service. CD keys associated with cheating will be restricted from playing on Battle.net for a period of time, and repeat offenders may have their CD keys banned permanently.

As part of our continued effort to ensure a fair and fun online experience for all Battle.net players, we have expanded our efforts to remove cheaters from StarCraft and Diablo II. We have identified and closed over 350,000 StarCraft and Diablo II accounts which were found to be using third-party hacks.

The Diablo II CD keys associated with the closed Diablo II accounts are now restricted from playing on Battle.net for approximately 30 days. Repeat offenders will have their accounts closed and their CD keys permanently banned from Battle.net.

As a reminder, we reserve the right to close the accounts and ban the CD keys of players who are caught cheating on Battle.net. Cheating ruins the game experience for legitimate players, and we will not tolerate it.
For more information head over to the links below.

Battle.net: Ban Policy Update
Blizzard Entertainment (add to watch list)


Mac Games News for Wednesday, November 12, 2008

IMG Reviews Agatha Christie: Peril and End House1:47 PM
Diablo III: Preset Attributes6:00 AM
Penny Arcade Adventures Episode Two Reviewed6:00 AM
Top Chef Comes To Macs6:00 AM
Transgaming Partners With Oberon Media6:00 AM
 
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, November 12, 2008 on one page


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