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Friday, April 10, 1998

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John Cash on Quake 3 Fun Names

Headlines

John Cash on Q3 Fun Names
NVIDIA's Response
IRC-O-Rama
Duke Chat
Rocket Arena Release Party
Mac Util Chat
Quake/Quake II Releases
Freeze Tag
Battle of the Sexes
Atlas Phase 1
Bot Front-ends
Recon Wars
Requiem Source Code
Quake III FAQ
Competitions
Q2CTFI
The Coalition
Editing
New Qoole
*reviews
MacQuake 1.09
Righteous 3D II
Site Seeing
etc.
Out of the Blue

Yesterday

John Cash made a .plan update, among other things indicating the fun will return to fun names in Quake 3 "with a vengeance":

Quake3
------
Working converting everything over for the new fixed virtual reolustion console that John mentioned. The font is now a code page 850 like set so those of you who don't happen to have English as your native language will have all the letters in your alphabet available. As before, some of the extra slots are being used for graphics parts. There characters *are* available for use in your name. The font was bumped up in size from 8x8 to 16x16, although the rendered resolution may be different because of the virtual console size. The font itself is just white now. Colored text is being done a different way now. Some places we will force the text to be draw in a single, fixed color. Others it will start out white, but can be changed mid-string. That includes your name! Yes, the return of the fun name... with a vengeance! If anoyone would start a petition if I disabled animated names, please tell me now. They are a bad waste of bandwidth and right now I plan to stop that with "no name spamming" code.

other stuff

NVIDIA's Response
NVIDIA has posted a response to SGI's lawsuit (reported yesterday). Thanks Voodoo Extreme:

"We believe this action is motivated by the loss of some of the best 3D architects in the world to NVIDIA Corporation," said Jen-Hsun Huang, president and CEO of NVIDIA.

"These people had no involvement in the design of NVIDIA's current RIVA graphics processors which are the subject of the alleged patent infringement. NVIDIA is prepared to vigorously defend itself."

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IRC-O-Rama
A few chat events on the horizon today:

Duke Chat
George Broussard will be participating in TEN's Online Lecture Series at 4:00 PM Pacific (7:00 PM Eastern) today, talking about Duke Nukem Forever. A TEN account is required, more details are on their website.

Rocket Arena Release Party
A release party for the Quake II version of Rocket Arena is planned for tonight, starting at 7:00 PM Pacific (10:00 PM Eastern time) on 3dNet IRC in the channel #arena (servers include irc.3dnet.net, irc.planetquake.com, and idcube.idsoftware.com). The 12 MB Rocket Arena client pack, which supports the VWep visible weapons patch, will be available for immediate download, and features 8 maps with 46 total arenas.

Mac Util Chat
MacQuake utility author Scott Kevill (QuakeFinder, Quiver), is the guest for a chat interview in the newly re-opened chat area of Quakeintosh (a 3.0, Java-enabled browser is required). The festivities get underway at 9:00 PM Eastern time.

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Quake/Quake II Releases

Freeze Tag
Freeze Tag is a cool sounding new Quake II mod described as a cross between JailBreak and CTF. The object is to freeze your opponents, at which point you can drag them back to your base. Frozen teammates can be thawed by standing near them for 3 seconds, and scoring accomplished when all members of one team are frozen (at which point they explode into shards. Cool! Gib-cicles!).

Battle of the Sexes
A server-only release, version 2.9.3 of the Battle of the Sexes gender-war is out on Spinoza's Quake 2 Mods Page, mostly offering lag reduction improvements.

Atlas Phase 1
The last phase of Phase 1 (?) of the Atlas Quake II Map utility project is out, with Phase 2 expected soon.

Bot Front-ends
AutoBot for AceBot 0.06b is out, following-up on the AutoBot team's intention to make a separate version of their Bot launcher for every Quake II bot available. Also, version 1.36 alpha of the Quick Start - Eraser Bot Wizard is out.

Recon Wars
A server-only version 1.61 of Recon Wars for Quake II is now available.

Requiem Source Code
The source code for Requiem 2.0 for normal Quake is now available for download on the Requiem Homepage.

Quake III FAQ
The second Unofficial Quake 3 FAQ has has another update, now to version 0.03.

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Competitions

Q2CTFI
The schedule and divisions for Q2CTFi, a Quake II CTF tourney, are up on the website, with competition to get underway April 20.

The Coalition
The Coalition is a CTF tourney starting up with separate QuakeWorld and Quake II divisions. Players sign up as individuals, and teams will be formed by having captains select from the pool of players.

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Editing

New Qoole
Version 2.36 of both WinQoole and GlideQoole are up on the Qoole Test Release page. Thanks Fishman from Rust.

*reviews

MacQuake 1.09
MacQuake 1.09 is reviewed on MacQuake.com in an article that offers comparisons to previous MacQuake releases.

Righteous 3D II
PsychoNews reviews the Voodoo2, examining the 12MB Righteous 3D II.

Site Seeing

etc.

Out of the Blue
Woo! I think I'm back on track over here, and feeling much better (thanks for all the kind words).

Thursday, April 9, 1998

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QuakeCast

Headlines

QuakeCast
SGI Sues NVIDIA
Quake II Tweak Guide
More Quake/Quake II Releases
Future versus Fantasy
New Eraser Bot & Bot Johnny
LM CTF
Raven Departure
Carmack's Quake 3 Update
Quake/Quake II Releases
Q2 Bible: Resources
Revenge of Stroggos
Chaos Deathmatch
ServObit
Above and Beyond
Strike Team Quake TC
DEMentED 2 Demo Editor
Bot Front-ends
The Amoeba's Daikatana Coup
Ask the Oracle
Technology
New SoundBlaster Drivers
Voodoo2 Drivers - Game FAQ
New H3D Quake
VELOCITY 128 Drivers
The Quake State
Riot Forum
PowerVR Stuff
People
Levelord Times Two
Matthias Worch
QERadiant
Competitions
DWANGO Quake II Comp.
Q2 Elite
Site Seeing
etc.
Out of the Blue

Yesterday

QuakeCast high command tells me tonight's show is being replaced by a repeat.

SGI Sues NVIDIA
According to this Yahoo press release, Silicon Graphics, Inc. is suing NVIDIA seeking an injunction to prevent NVIDIA from manufacturing their RIVA-family accelerators. The suit alleges the RIVAs infringe upon SGI's U.S. Patent No. 5,706,481 for an innovation "that has made high-speed texture mapping possible in low-priced hardware."

Quake II Tweak Guide
An updated 3 Fingers' Quake 2 Tweak Guide, version 1.10.01 to be quite precise, is up on 3 Fingers' & Heron's Quake and Quake II Ultimate Boundaries.

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More Quake/Quake II Releases
Too darn many releases to add to the list of releases from earlier today, so we'll start a new one:

Future versus Fantasy
Version 4.02 of the Future vs Fantasy for QuakeWorld client pack is out, offering a new Chaos mode, improved Teamplay, GLQW support, and Purge mode. Word is the new beta is not officially supported by Freeform Interactive.

New Eraser Bot & Bot Johnny
Version 0.92 of the Eraser Bot is up on the Impact Development Team page fixing what are described as "nasty AI bugs (mostly CTF related)". Also, in another new bot front-end release, version 1.1 of Bot Johnny is now available.

LM CTF
A server-only version 3.02  patch for Loki's Minions Capture the Flag is out, fixing bugs that caused killer observers, unwanted team scrambling with TEAM_RESET off, non-functioning radio command, and LMCTF05's "gaping hole between the flags."

Raven Departure
Word from Phoebus is that animation wiz Mike "Chaos" Werckle is departing Raven software. No word on his new plans, but best of luck to Chaos whatever he ends up doing.

John Carmack's Quake 3 Update
John Carmack's .plan gives the lowdown on two ends of the id gaming spectrum, giving up the latest on Quake 3, as well as his impressions on the state of the Doom source release:

Things are progressing reasonably well on the Quake 3 engine.

Not being limited to supporting a 320*240 256 color screen is very, very nice, and will make everyone's lives a lot easier.

All of our new source artwork is being done in 24 bit TGA files, but the engine will continue to load .wal files and .pcx files for developer's convenience. Each pcx can have its own palette now though, because it is just converted to 24 bit at load time.

Q3 is going to have a fixed virtual screen coordinate system, independant of resolution. I tried that back in the original glquake, but the fixed coordinate system was only 320*200, which was excessively low. Q2 went with a dynamic layout at different resolutions, which was a pain, and won't scale to the high resolutions that very fast cards will be capable of running at next year.

All screen drawing is now done assuming the screen is 640*480, and everything is just scaled as you go higher or lower. This makes laying out status bars and HUDs a ton easier, and will let us do a lot cooler looking screens.

There will be an interface to let game dlls draw whatever they want on the screen, precisely where they want it. You can suck up a lot of network bandwidth doing that though, so some care will be needed.

--

Going to the completely opposite end of the hardware spectrum from quake 3...

I have been very pleased with the fallout from the release of the DOOM source code.

At any given spot in design space, there are different paths you can take to move forward. I have usually chosen to try to make a large step to a completely new area, but the temptation is there to just clean up and improve in the same area, continuously polishing the same program.

I am enjoying seeing several groups pouring over DOOM, fixing it up and enhancing it. Cleaning up long standing bugs. Removing internal limitations. Orthogonalizing feature sets. Etc.

The two that I have been following closest are Team TNT's BOOM engine project, which is a clear headed, well engineered improvement on the basic DOOM technical decisions, and Bruce Lewis' glDoom project.

Any quakers feeling nostalgic should browse around:

http://www.doomworld.com/

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Quake/Quake II Releases
Not one, but two releases featuring Airfist-type weapons:

Q2 Bible: Resources
The Gutenbergs (no, not Steve) of the Quake II Bible, Kenn and Thresh, are at it again, adding a Quake 2 Resource Guide to their Quake II Bible.

Revenge of Stroggos
Beta version 1.21 of the Revenge of Stroggos Quake II TC was posted on Saturday. Two known servers running this class-based mod are: 165.91.9.182 and 24.0.141.13.

Chaos Deathmatch
Version 0.2 of Chaos Deathmatch for Quake II is out, offering a lights off game mode, a flashlight (goes with the lights out, eh?), the airfist, weapon banning, item banning, and more.

ServObit
The Win95 version 1.4 of ServObit for Quake II is up on SteQve's No Frills ServObit Page, with a Linux release promised shortly. The new version offers gender-specific obit messages (tired of the CrackWhores being referred to as "he"?), genderless messages (for Snorks, etc.), group messages, and even a test program to ensure you haven't forgotten any possible permutations.

Above and Beyond
The first release of the Above and Beyond Quake II Mod is out, the object is described as to shoot your enemies into the abyss below using an airgun-type weapon.

Strike Team Quake TC
Beta version 2.10 of the Special Forces Quake - Strike Team TC for Quake is out offering a new multiplayer map, improved multiplayer gaming, fixed crouch code, entities for map building and a GLQuake fix.

DEMentED 2 Demo Editor
Version 0.500 of the DEMentED 2 Quake II demo editor is available, along with information on how to register the program.

Bot Front-ends
Quick Start - Eraser Bot Wizard version 1.32 Alpha is out fixing a few bugs. Assassin Bot support is a new feature of the AutoBot which now supports no less than nine Quake II bots, however the future plan is to make separate versions of the AutoBot for each supported bot.

The Amoeba's Daikatana Coup
Following Kee Kimbrell's recent departure, Jonathan "Nelno the Amoeba" Wright has taken over the reigns as lead programmer for Daikatana, apparently slam-dunked into the position by John Romero as noted on the ION Storm site (see how you can twist things around if you try?). The daily informant also takes a look at the Daikatana team's preparations for E3.

Ask the Oracle
Answers to reader-submitted questions about the gaming industry will be answered on a weekly basis on the Oracle, a new section on the Gathering of Developers website. The first Q&A posted there has 3DRealms' Scott Miller answering "How do I get a Job as a Game Developer?".

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Technology

New SoundBlaster Drivers
Updated Windows 95 SoundBlaster drivers are up on Creative Labs' FTP site. Thanks Jan Henell.

Voodoo2 "Gold" Drivers - Game FAQ
Dylan Rhodes from 3Dfx shot off the "Gold" Windows 95/98 drivers (1.5 MB) and WindowsNT drivers (1.15 MB) for the Voodoo2 to the fine fellows over at 3dfx Mania. Also, a new version of Moody's Voodoo 2 game FAQ (17 KB) is out (thanks Voodoo Extreme).

New H3D Quake
H3D Media has an updated Quake II installer for H3D stereo glasses. Thanks 3Dfx Mania.

VELOCITY 128 Drivers
New WHQL Certified version 1.6.6 Windows 95 drivers for the VELOCITY 128 are out offering OpenGL Support (though the new OpenGL drivers do not support the VELOCITY's TV-out features). Thanks Randy Perry.

The Quake State
An updated version of The Quake State, a look at Quake II performance and visual quality on 3Dgen @ VE, now has info and screenshots for Quake II running on every 3D accelerator except the PowerVR PCX2.

Riot Forum
The Riot Forum is back online on the Riot: Mobile Armor website with a focus on technical discussions of DirectEngine technology. Thanks PsychoNews.

PowerVR Stuff
An article on eXtreme3D seeks to clear up what they feel are misconceptions about the PVRSG in Next-Generation's recent preview. Also, there's a PowerVR Unreal Feature up on Unreal Nation that looks at Epic's upcoming shooter on the PCX2 and offers five screenshots of the game running on a PVRSG.

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People

Levelord Times Two
There's an interview with Levelord up on Rust, and another on Ritnews.com.

Matthias Worch
Matthias Worch also submits to Ritnews.com's third degree.

QERadiant
Robert Duffy of QERadiant is interviewed on Twisted Edge Games.

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Competitions

DWANGO Quake II Competition
DWANGO is holding a Quake II competition called the Get Real Shootout featuring Quake II (now that rolls off the tongue). There are single-player and clan competitions, and the whole shebang is to culminate in a face-to-face playoff at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Atlanta. Thanks Prophet.

Q2 Elite
Q2 Elite is a small Quake II competition ring, with about 12 openings for interested clans.

Site Seeing

etc.

Out of the Blue
Thanks again for all the kind words to accompanied my trip to the Dentist yesterday (with mixed feelings I find the source of my severe pain of the last couple weeks was avoidable, and was easily fixed. At least I'm optimistic that after today this will cease to be a big factor (who could tell right now, I'm pretty damn doped up)). I hope I didn't lose anything in all my catching up today, it's amazing how much you can miss in one afternoon/evening away. Oh yeah, local file downloads courtesy of GamesNet's blazing FTP is now working again: local copies of the new Voodoo 2 drivers are posted above, and we should be up to speed now hosting local files again.

Wednesday, April 8, 1998

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MacQuake 1.09

Headlines

MacQuake 1.09
Quake 3 at E3?
Quake/Quake II Releases
Quick Start Eraser Bot Wizard
Quake2-LaunchPad
Newer ServerConfigMOD 2
Quake 2 Camera
Eye On the Storm
Disruptor Interview
Technology
Netscape 4.05 Follow-up
Big Harddrives
Quake II 3D Sound
*reviews
Heretic II
MotS
Outwars
Righteous 3D II Review
SpecOps
Cyberman II
Competitions
QuakeWorld Invitational
Screenshot Contest
Site Seeing
etc.
Out of the Blue

Yesterday

Owners of the full version of MacQuake can find a patch to update to version 1.09 on the WizWorks support pages. At least they can find word of the files there, I tried for some time to log in and provide local copies (I believe this will work now!), but was unable to get in. Thanks Hans Andersen.

Quake 3 at E3?
sCary has posted an interview with John Carmack extensively covering the subject of whether Quake 3 will be shown in any form at this year's E3. Here's an excerpt (head over to the Shuga Shack to read John's whole reply, which has a period at the end).

sCary: Hey John, quick question. what can we expect to see for Quake3 at E3?

John Carmack: Not sure yet

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Quake/Quake II Releases

Quick Start Eraser Bot Wizard
Quick Start - Eraser Bot Wizard alpha 1.22 is out fixing a bunch of bugs (don't get too comfortable, version 1.3 is in the works).

Quake2-LaunchPad
Quake2-LaunchPad is a new Quake II front-end offering support for Threewave CTF, Superheroes II and King of the Hill games in addition to single-player DM and co-op.

Newer ServerConfigMOD 2
Hot on the heels of Beta 2, Beta 3 of deathmatch 2.1 of ServerConfigMOD 2 is out, fixing a bug that allowed spectators to drop items for players to pick up (ooops).

Quake 2 Camera
A test page is up gauging interest in Quake2 Camera, a Quake II update to QCam, a chase cam.

Eye On the Storm
ION Storm has announced that Todd Porter is now CEO. Tom Hall has assumed the title of President, with John Romero hanging in there as Chairman. Future plans include adding the word "executive" in front of each of those titles. Details on this can be found in yesterday's Daily Informant on ION's site, where there's also the new April Eye on Storm newsletter.

Disruptor Interview
id's Christian 'Disruptor' Antkow submits to the third degree in an interview on Rust.

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Technology

Netscape 4.05 Follow-up
The Java Development Kit 1.1 Preview Release for Communicator 4.05 (Windows 95/NT) is up on the Netscape JDK 1.1 Update Support page. Thanks ET (phone home).

Big Harddrives
Seagate Announces 10 GB IDE drives. Thanks Tim McCarty. No big deal, DocWilco points out, since Maxtor announced 11.5 GB drives a couple of months ago.

Quake II 3D Sound
3D Sound Support for Quake 2 is a project exploring the possibilities of adding 3D sound to Quake II.

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*reviews

Heretic II
There's a Heretic II preview up on AVault.

MotS
GamePen has posted a Mysteries of the Sith review looking at the Jedi Knight mission pack.

Outwars
PC Gamer's Outwars preview describes Microsoft's upcoming third-person jetpack game as appealing to those who seek more "depth" than will be provided by upcoming shooters like Half-Life, Sin, Unreal, and the first Quake II mission pack. A playable trial version of Outwars is expected Friday. Thanks Voodoo Extreme.

Righteous 3D II Review
There's a a review of the Righteous 3D II, Orchid's Voodoo2 offering, up on GamePen.

SpecOps
Another combo SpecOps preview/interview is up, this one on GameStats.

Cyberman II
Gamestats reviews the Logitech CyberMan2.

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Competitions

QuakeWorld Invitational
QuakeWorld Invitational League is a tourney looking to pit 12 LPB clans against each other in a struggle for supremacy in QuakeWorld. No word on how the invitees will be selected.

Screenshot Contest
PC Fan, seemingly quite proud of their insanity, are holding a Quake II screenshot competition, offering a Jazz Outlaw 3D video card for the winner.

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Site Seeing
Would this section be shorter if I just kept a running list of sites that haven't moved to PlanetQuake?

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etc.

Out of the Blue
If updates remain spotty through tomorrow, it's because I will be at the dentist all afternoon. I strongly believe that this is the last visit involving real trauma, and hope that life will return to what passes for normal here at the old Blue Tower shortly. The no-win choice between pain and pain-killers lately has robbed me of much of the time and energy to do as much work on this site as I want (these last few weeks in particular), and I appreciate everyone's patience with that. I have mixed feelings about sharing what sounds like self-pity here, please know this is not meant in that way: When situations arise where the normal operation of this site is affected I just like to make that known.

Tuesday, April 7, 1998

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FAQs

Headlines

FAQs
Quake II FAQ
Quake III FAQ
Heretic II FAQ
Quake/Quake II Releases
Ez Server
ServerConfigMOD 2
Lithium II (Updated)
Bot Front-ends
Linux Eraser
Weapons Factory
HotLaunch
Technology
Win95/NT Permedia 2 Drivers
Matrox Specs
NT OpenGL ICD
PVRSG
Post-Final Reality
HexenWorld 1.11
The Wide World of Games
Blade the Vampire Hunter
New Glide BC3KAD
People
Tom Hall Interview
"Shade" Wilson Interview
Gateway Interview
Bobby Duncanson
*reviews
Unreal
Klingon Honor Guard
Spec Ops
Logitech-o-Rama
Editing
H2 Mission Pack Utilities
Quake II Sprite Editor
CTF Textures
Competitions
ClanRing CTF League
Blood2Whore?
Site Seeing
etc.
Out of the Blue

Yesterday

Quake II FAQ
Version 1.76 of The Unofficial Quake II FAQ is now up (apparently finished a while back but not uploaded until now).

Quake III FAQ
An updated version 0.15 of The Unofficial Quake III FAQ is online (as opposed to yesterday's version 0.02 of the Quake 3 FAQ, what a difference a roman numeral makes).

Heretic II FAQ
Version .006 of the Unofficial Heretic II FAQ is online.

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Quake/Quake II Releases

Ez Server
Version 1.2 of Ez Server, the Quake II server front-end is now available.

ServerConfigMOD 2
Deathmatch version 2.1 beta 3 of ServerConfigMOD 2 (now that's a lot of different numbers) is online, offering a chase cam and a fully configurable MOTD.

Lithium II (Updated)
Version 0.98 of Lithium II for Quake II is out capping a brief flurry of releases adding a couple of administrative features while, hopefully squashing a couple of bugs that could crash the server.

Bot Front-ends
Version 1.0 of Bot Johnny, the Eraser front-end is out.

Linux Eraser
The Linux version of the Eraser Bot beta 0.91 for Quake II is up on the Impact Development Team, along with word of an unprecedented occurrence, Quake helps someone's love-life, as an anecdote called "Eraser can get you laid!" holds hope for all geeks.

Weapons Factory
Version 1.07 of The Weapons Factory CTF mod for Quake II is out.

HotLaunch
Version 1.6.2b of the Hot Launch bot launcher is out.

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Technology

Win95 & NT Permedia 2 Drivers
New Windows 95 and new NT drivers for Permedia2-based accelerators are up on the 3Dlabs page. Thanks Mauler.

Matrox Specs
The specs on Matrox' upcoming 3D accelerators are up on the Matrox website. Thanks Voodoo Extreme.

NT OpenGL ICD
The RivaZone, a veritable hotbed of RIVA 128-related news has posted STB's Open GL ICD for Windows NT. Word there is that this should work on other RIVA 128 based cards. Thanks Voodoo Extreme.

PVRSG
Sharky's got an article up on Next-Generation called The full story on PVRSG, examining PowerVR's upcoming 3D chipset.

Post-Final Reality
Futuremark Corporation is a new sister company to Remedy Entertainment, creators of the Final Reality benchmark/eye-candy dealie. Futuremark will concentrate on the development of 3D benchmark software. This is all detailed in Remedy' Technical Director Markus Mäki's .plan.

HexenWorld 1.11
Version 1.11 of HexenWorld is up on Hexenworld. The same message from Rick Johnson applies to this go 'round as version 1.10, so here's a recap:

Includes 3 new deathmatch levels: hwdm3, hwdm4, hwdm5. hwdm3 is not HW friendly (i.e. big huge open areas = bad for networking).

Be sure to go to the key configure menu and bind a key to "Player Names". There is also a console variable, r_teamcolor, that you can set to tint other players who are on your team.

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The Wide World of Games

Blade the Vampire Hunter
Excelsior! Zero Gravity Entertainment, who brought us X-Men: Ravages of the Apocalypse, have pulled Marvel Comic's lawyers out of Bankruptcy Court long enough to begin a new project in the Mighty Marvel Manner: Blade the Vampire Hunter (my recollection is this was "the Vampire Slayer" in my youth). No word yet on what engine the whole deal will use.

New Glide BC3KAD
A new Glide patch for Derek Smart's Battle Cruiser 3000 A.D. is up on the GNN section of www.bc3000ad.com as an unsupported release (there's no equivalent software version. Word from Derek is that with the arrival of his PowerVR developers kit, there are no plans for Direct3D support, as the final game will support Glide, Rendition, PowerVR, and any cards that don't have their own APIs but have a supporting OpenGL ICD (like the RIVA 128).

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People

Tom Hall Interview
An interview looking into the working's of Tom Hall's brain is up on Warzone. Find out the latest on ION's Anachronox, the game business, and more, from the man unlucky enough to have been shot on each of the last two April Fool's Days(!). Talk about bad luck. Thanks Slipgate.

Jay "Shade" Wilson Interview
An interview with Monolith's Jay "Shade" Wilson is up on the The Blood 2 Pit, talking about Blood 2.

Gateway Interview
Ex-rogue, and new member of Nihilistic Software, Steve "Gateway" Tietze is interviewed on Computer Games Online. I saw that on Redwood's.

Bobby Duncanson
Raven's Bobby Duncanson updated his .plan which is almost always good for a laugh.

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*reviews

Unreal
A new short Unreal Preview on GamePro Online offers a pair of new screenshot. Thanks Unreal.Org.

Klingon Honor Guard
A Klingon Honor Guard Preview on GameSpot looks at this upcoming Unreal engine set in the Star Trek Universe.

Spec Ops
Combat Simulations has re-printed their Preview of Spec Ops, and a new interview with Sandra of Zombie, talking about this realistic military combat simulator. Thanks Voodoo Extreme.

Logitech-o-Rama
Cal's Hardware Shop has posted a review of a few Logitech controllers, including that CyberMan 2 thing with the puck.

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Editing

Hexen II Mission Pack Utilities
The Hexen II Mission Pack Utilities are available on Hexenworld. The package includes a version of QBSP with an increased max_planes limit, and a Hexen II script compiler.

Quake II Sprite Editor
There are only a few sprites in the 3D world of Quake II, but even fewer sprite editors, so hgspr2 is up on the HouseGirl Software page, to assist in all your sprite-editing needs.

CTF Textures
There is an archive of textures converted for CTF and "other" uses up on BadMonkey's PreFabs.

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Competitions

ClanRing CTF League
The ClanRing CTF League has been picked up Loser after the league's maintainer dropped from the scene a few weeks ago, and word is up on the page on how the last remaining matches will be conducted.

Blood2Whore?
Monolith's Scott Schlegel updated his .plan with word on his own competition in the vein of Paul Steed's CrackWhore contest, asking for a photo that "best captures the look and feel of the sexy yet ass-kicking Ophelia."

Site Seeing

etc.

Out of the Blue
Thanks to Focus on Quake for honoring Blue's News as the best news site in their top ten Quake sites in April. Also so honored is our own Gamer's Guide, masterful maintained by Andrew "kolinahr" Wu and Dakota (a double winner, as his work on Captured is also honored). Congrats to all the deserving winners.

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Monday, April 6, 1998

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New Hexenworld Beta

Headlines

New Hexenworld Beta
FAQs
SiN Files
Half-Life Release Date Clarification
The Dallas Gaming Scene
New TeamFortress 1 Maintainer
Descent Freespace Demo Plans
Quake/Quake II Releases
New Eraser Bot - Eraser Source
Eraser Front-end
FamkeBot
Battle of the Sexes
Quake II Timer
War Zone CTF2
Rocket Arena 2 News
Competitions
Quake Easter Egg Hunt
USA vs. Finland
People
Brian Hook
Jay Wilson
morbid
Scott Alden Interview
*reviews
Duke Nukem Time2Kill Preview
BlackOps Preview
Praevus Review
glDoom Screenshots
Site Seeing
etc.
Out of the Blue

Yesterday

Phoebus passes along word of a new HexenWorld beta, both client and server available on Hexenworld, along with this note from Rick Johnson:

Includes 3 new deathmatch levels hwdm3, hwdm4, hwdm5. hwdm3 is not HW friendly (i.e. big huge open areas = bad for networking).

Be sure to go to the key configure menu and bind a key to "Player Names". There is also a console variable, r_teamcolor, that you can set to tint other players who are on your team.

FAQs
An updated version 0.02 of the second Quake 3 FAQ (now that is confusing) is online. Speaking of FAQ's, the Flying Penguin's Quake Coop, home of the Flying Penguin's Quake / Quake 2 3D FAQ has landed at a new roost.

SiN Files
Beware the wages of sin, as Volume VI of the Levelord's Sin Files is up on Games.Net with  onethumb giving us the lowdown on his history in gaming, just how spiffy it is to be him, and some stuff about some game or another called Sin. (Just kidding Don, even the part about your Boy Scout years was interesting.  =)  There's some cool SiNfo there including this on action based outcome:

SiN manages to be quite nonlinear without creating a lot of back-and-forth gameplay. The buzzword here at the offices is "ABO," or Action-Based Outcome. What that means, basically, is that various actions taken by the gamer can cause gameplay twists and changes, resulting in a different experience with each outcome. For example, if you were to shoot and destroy some vats of mutagen which spill out into a water source, you may have to fight different adversaries in a later underwater level. The creatures may have mutated, creating much more vicious creatures. However, if you leave the vats alone, chances are there'll just be some normal scuba guards thirsting for your blood.

Half-Life Release Date Clarification
The release date listed on Sierra's Half-Life Web site has bounced around a bit from April, to June, to Summer over the past few days, so Sierra's Eric Twelker sends along an explanation of what's up with that:

Sierra has received numerous inquiries in the past day regarding the official Half-Life Web site's listing of an early June ship date. This listing is inaccurate and, since no specific release date has been announced, the site has been updated to 'Summer 1998.'   Half-Life is still on target for a late Spring - early Summer release and the Valve team is working towards hitting in the E3 timeframe.   Half-Life is coming along nicely;  it's looking great and we're all very excited about it.

Thanks for your patience and continued support!

The Dallas Gaming Scene
A TechWeb article titled Duking It Out In Dallas is the first part of a two-part story describing the gaming scene in Dallas (the hotbed of the first person shooter), from its beginning through the present day. The next installment promises to "Delve into the different way these companies are doing business, and how they have made themselves so popular among Internet denizens." Denizen? I resemble that remark! Thanks stone.

New TeamFortress 1 Maintainer
An announcement on the Team Fortress Homepage reveals that TeamFortress Software will no longer be maintaining TeamFortress for Quake, as they continue to concentrate on TeamFortress2. From now on, bug fixes, cheat-removal and other forms of maintenance will be the responsibility of Gudlyf. Thanks Spaceman Spif of the Team Fortress Newswire

Descent Freespace Demo Plans
Word on the Volition Inc. page is that they plan to release a Descent: Freespace demo by the end of this month, that will weigh in at about 20 MB. Here's what to expect (thanks Voodoo Extreme): 3 missions in a mini-campaign with branching, 4 Terran ship classes, 3 enemy fighter classes, 3 weapons, Glide and software-based renderers, Action-driven digital music, Full briefings and debriefings with voice, In-game voice messages and more.

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Quake/Quake II Releases

New Eraser Bot - Eraser Source
Version 0.91 of the Eraser Bot for Quake II is up on the Impact Development Team page, fixing bugs and adding enhancements, particularly to CTF play, and many will be relieved to hear the Eraser's RailGun aim described as "more human-like". Also available on the Impact page is the source code for the Eraser, though Ridah noted he has reservations about releasing the source prior to version 1.0 of the Eraser, and suggests that only experienced programmers download it. Thanks FNC.

Eraser Front-end
Right in sync with the new Eraser, version 1.9a of the Eraser Front-end is up on Industry News.

FamkeBot
Version 5.0 of the Quake II FamkeBot is now available, offering a "ton of bugfixes" as well as new features.

Battle of the Sexes
Version 2.9.2 of Battle of the Sexes teamplay mod for Quake II is out on Spinoza's Quake 2 Mods Page adding the ability for snipers to "cloak" (ack!), and fixing the server crashing bug.

Quake II Timer
A Quake II Timer program is out on the Quake done Quick page giving everyone the ability to participate in their mania for Quake II speed runs.

War Zone CTF2
Version 1.42 of War Zone CTF2, the CTF variant that bears too close a resemblance to TeamFortress for some tastes, is out on its new homepage.

Rocket Arena 2 News
Word from Team Rocket Arena is that barring unforeseen occurrences, Rocket Arena 2 will be released this Friday in an IRC party, with more details to be released during the week. There are some screenshots up here to get you worked up. RA2 features Multi-Arena maps, two different teamplay modes, a menu based voting system, four custom viewing modes (a real spectator sport), new skins, VWep support, Internet-wide stat collection, and the proverbial whole nine yards.

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Competitions

Quake Easter Egg Hunt
Team Innovations have innovated again, cooking up a competition called the Quake Easter Egg Hunt. The hunt is scheduled for Easter Sunday (when else?), which is Sunday, April 12, for the secular crowd (the client can be downloaded the night before). The hunt offers a $100 prize for the winner.

USA vs. Finland
Results of an international CTF match between the US and Finland are up on the USA! QWCTF Homepage.

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People

Brian Hook
Brian Hook made another CTF-related .plan update suggesting a "right-hand rule" for right-of-way situations between teammates in CTF. Learn it, live it, love it.

Jay Wilson
Monolith's Jay Wilson posted word in his .plan about the imminent Blood 2 website, mentioning that the project's title is officially "Blood 2: The Chosen", though pointing out that it's not yet even an announced product.

morbid
TeamGameSpy's Jack "morbid" Mathews made a .plan update with information for users of the GameSpy 2.0 beta.

Scott Alden Interview
There's a Scott Alden Interview on RitNews.

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*reviews

Duke Nukem Time2Kill Preview
GameSlice has a preview of Duke Nukem Time2Kill, a third person perspective PlayStation title starring everybody's blond (only his hairdresser knows for sure) action hero. Thanks sCary.

BlackOps Preview
A BlackOps (working title) preview on AVault takes a look at this upcoming DirectEngine game categorized as an online RPG, though there's also a description that says "similar to: Unique", which is intriguing, as how many unique games do you see? Thanks Voodoo Extreme.

Praevus Review
AVault reviews Portal of Praevus, the Hexen II mission pack.

glDoom Screenshots
There are some really nice glDoom screenshots up on the The Official WinDoom / glDoom Homepage.

Site Seeing

etc.

Out of the Blue
Many comments  about "The Elements of Style" reference yesterday (including a correction right from the book on my use of Daylight Savings [sic] Time, which should be Daylight Saving Time, thanks squidboy you wise ass--I said I read it, I didn't say it helped). In other coolness, the Elements of Style is actually online as a website (thanks Jason Spears), so you can be literate without touching a book(!). Most surprising notes from yesterday were complaints that there was no Sunday "Out of the Blue" ... who knew it would be missed?

Sunday, April 5, 1998 Daylight Saving Time Sufferers: "Spring Ahead"

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GameSpy 2.0 Beta

Headlines

GameSpy 2.0 Beta
MacQuake/GLMacQuake Update
Quake/Quake II Releases
CRBot
Weapons of Destruction
Q2Ring
Pure CTF
Tangential 1.6
Action Quake2
TombRaider Gold PVR Patch
People
John Romero Interview
Hook on CTF
Editing
Modeling FAQ
Competitions
Voodoo2
ThunderWalker CTF Tourney
Quake for Charity
Polls & Opinions
Site Seeing
etc.

Yesterday

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Beta 1 of GameSpy 3D version 2.0 is up on the GameSpy 3D page for registered users only. Saw that on Redwood's.

MacQuake/GLMacQuake Update
Word on the WestLake Interactive Page is that a new patch is on the way to bring MacQuake and GL MacQuake almost completely in line with the current PC versions (thanks BossMonkey):

The GLQuake .97 patch is nearly finished, we're just doing some extra testing to make sure it all works. Nearly all the .97 changes from the PC are in, and several minor bug fixes to both normal Quake Mac and GLQuake Mac are also in the new 1.09 update. Keep checking back for updates!

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Quake/Quake II Releases

CRBot
Version 1.1 of the CRBot is out, featuring preliminary CTF support.

Weapons of Destruction
Version 5.2 of Weapons of Destruction for Quake II is out with some new weapons and a swinging grappling hook replacing the old one.

Q2Ring
Version .35 of Q2Ring, a mod to allow for Quake II Clan matches a la the clanring mod, is available.

Pure CTF
Version 1.35 of Pure CTF for QuakeWorld is out, mostly offering bug-fixes.

Tangential 1.6
Version 1.6 of the Tangential Quake II Mod is out.

Action Quake2
Version 0.85 of Action Quake2 is out fixing "a plethora of bugs" from the first release.

TombRaider Gold PowerVR Patch
A patch to allow native PowerVR support for TombRaider Gold is out, here's the AVault's PC Release List link. Thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme.

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People

John Romero Interview
There's a John Romero Interview up on Methos Quake

Hook on CTF
With a name like Hook, he'd have to be into CTF, right? Brian Hook outlines a some basic CTF strategy in his .plan. In a later update, Brian recommends a couple of books I dig myself, Soul of a New Machine, and The Elements of Style (Strunk & White). Elements of Style is a book that you can easily read cover-to-cover in a single sitting, and anyone who does any writing at all should read it, often.

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Editing

Modeling FAQ
The Quake II Modeling Mailing list FAQ is online.

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Competitions

Voodoo2
Twisted Edge Games is holding a contest and giving away a Voodoo2 card as the top prize with a Voodoo for the runner-up.

ThunderWalker CTF Tourney
Sign-ups for both the low-ping and high-ping divisions of a two-on-two ThunderWalker CTF King of Capture tournament are now being accepted.

Quake for Charity
The Northern Ireland Quake Tournament is a Quake competitions slated for next month with all proceeds to go to charity.

Polls & Opinions
A few of these: The results of that recent mile-long clan survey (okay, 35 questions) are online, in the form of quotes from the responses (they were basically essay questions). There's a poll on Capture the Flag News to try and determine the most popular of all the CTF variants available for Quake II. BlueTooth's Quake II Polls Page seem to offer as much opinion in the way their questions are phrased as they are asking for, so it's kind of a give-and-take poll. Also, there's "a petition for a bug free Quake" on Maddes' Quake Homepage (standard Blue disclaimer: I don't like petitions myself). Finally, there is a request on the JailBreak page for feedback on features to include in version 2.0.

Site Seeing

etc.

Saturday, April 4, 1998

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Praevus Walkthrough

Headlines

Praevus Walkthrough
Heretic II / HexenWorld
Technology
Linux Voodoo 2
Hook on No PVRNG Speculation
Celeron
Netscape 4.05 Caveat
Quake/Quake II Releases
PureDM for Quake II
Action Quake2
Strike Team for Quake
JailBreak Model Fix & Big News
Star Troopers for Quake II
Quake Scene Builder
ServerConfigMOD 2
GibStats
The Wide World of Games
Beta Tests
Real Time Strategy Chats
TombRaider 3... 4?
People
Paradox
kolinahr
Bobby Duncanson
*reviews
Loki's Minions CTF
Site Seeing
etc.
Out of the Blue

Yesterday

A walkthrough of the Hexen II mission pack, Portal of Praevus, on the Easter egg Nightmare skill mode is up on this temporary webpage.

Heretic II / HexenWorld
Raven's Dan Freed offers a Heretic II update in his .plan, and Rick Johnson's .plan says a Monday release is in the cards for the next version of HexenWorld.

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Technology

Linux Voodoo 2
Here's a page with a patch to allow Glide apps to run under Linux using a Voodoo2. Scotty! I need more power!

Hook on Lack of PVRNG Speculation
Brian Hook updated his .plan to clarify that a non-disclosure agreement is why he is not speculating about PVRNG (or whatever it is called) Quake 3 performance based on the released specs.

Celeron
Sharky from VE has whipped up an article on Next-Generation Online titled Intel Talks Celeron that looks at the big I's Celeron processor, an Enhanced FPU Pentium II variant, said to be aimed at the gamer market in spite of poor performance due to its lack of a cache.

Netscape 4.05 Caveat
Remember, If you live on the cutting edge, bring band-aids. A small warning about the new version of Netscape Communicator mentioned here the other day comes way of bob (I have not noticed any problems with it myself):

The version linked from your site, although v4.05, doesn't yet appear to be fully supported by Netscape. In addition, the JDK 1.1 support available for 4.03 and 4.04 does not yet exist for 4.05.

In short, installing this version makes it unable to use java applets developed in accordance with the current release of the JDK.

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Quake/Quake II Releases

PureDM for Quake II
Version 4.0 of the PureDM Quake2 Mod is out, offering IP banning, Level time remaining on the HUD, Flood protection, IP logging, VWep support, GibStats standard frag logging, and more.

Action Quake2
Version 0.82 of the Action Quake2 patch is out, a mod for Quake II based on action movies (most would not know this, but Quake II is originally based on "Driving Miss Daisy")."

Strike Team for Quake
Version 2.03 of the Strike Team multiplayer TC for classic Quake is out.

Quake II JailBreak Model Fix & Big News
There's a weapons.pcx on the JailBreak Page that fixes problems with the Zumlin model in JailBreak version 1.7. Also, word on the JB page confirms that Rogue wants to include Jailbreak in their Quake II mission pack #2, provided the permissions with id can be worked out, so no matter how that plays out I think congrats are in order to all the Wardens and guards over at JailBreak high-command for all their successes with this mod.

Star Troopers for Quake II
Version 0.25 of the Star Troopers TC for Quake II is out, featuring class based teamplay (familiar classes like engineer & medic), on any current CTF map you can find, VWep support, and stuff like that there.

Quake Scene Builder
Version 1.5 of the Quake Scene Builder is out. QSB is a Quake II model viewer that offers flexible viewing features to create fairly complex scenes.

ServerConfigMOD 2
Beta 2.1 of the deathmatch version of ServerConfigMOD 2 for Quake II is out, as well as an updated version 2.02 of the Linux variant. Thanks Prophet.

GibStats
Version 1.6a of the GibStats II Quake II analysis tool is out, fixing a bug in the start-up sequence in version 1.6.

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The Wide World of Games
Spanning the Globe with items of general gaming interest. Cover more? Cover less? This is another subject on which I welcome feedback.

Beta Tests
I saw on PsychoNews that Kesmai is taking sign-ups for a closed beta of Starship troopers, and GameStorm is holding an open beta of Rolemaster Magestorm, a team-based 3D role-playing battle. Finally, the age restriction on eligibility for the limited FireTeam beta (sign-ups end at Midnight tonight with 1000 testers to be selected randomly) has been lifted.

Real Time Strategy Chats
Here's a transcript of the recent IRC chat with the Total Annihilation team. Thanks Prophet. Also, Games.Net is holding a chat session with Bill Roper of Blizzard to give him the third degree on StarCraft on April 8.

TombRaider 3... 4?
I saw on Voodoo Extreme a Q&A With Eidos Chairman Ian Livingstone on GameCenter talks about where the TombRaider series is going: TR3 in November, and TR4 in 1999. Did you know spell-checking TombRaider brings up bombardier as the suggested correction?

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People

Paradox
Paradox made a rare .plan update making up for lost time by rambling on about Doom and Quake and Sin and Quake II and movies and.......

kolinahr
Turnabout is fair play, as kolinahr, maintainer of the interview-oriented Profile, is interviewed on SA Quake news.

Bobby Duncanson
I just have to point out that while it rarely has to do with gaming, Raven's Bobby Duncanson's .plan is a good resource for laughs. His current update banters with Lone^Wolf (of all people), and some past updates like this one are classics, at least for the George Carlin generation.

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*reviews

Loki's Minions CTF
Version 3.0 of Loki's Minions CTF receives a rave review on OGR (thanks doug). I also noticed Dakota raving about it on Captured.com, so I think it's safe to call it the "critically acclaimed" Loki's Minions CTF.

Site Seeing
Your web-based change of address labels:

etc.

Out of the Blue
The lessons we unlearn and re-learn. Let me right off un-promise any timeframes for future events here at the old Blue Tower. As I learned (long ago, and obviously have since forgotten), Murphy's Law has a special prejudice against those that make promises, so for my two outstanding predictions: The Half-Life preview will be up "when it's done", and local file downloads will resume "when they're ready" (one of the factors I failed to take into account on predictions about both of those are delays caused by influences out of my hands). My temptation is to already wreck my newfound resolve not to predict and give a general timeframe, but that's what got me into this mess. Let me make on huge apology for making promises I have not kept... I just hate doing that. Sorry. Off for most of the day.

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All rights reserved. Copyright © 1998 by Stephen Heaslip