Blue's News artwork by Walter |2| Costinak <2@2design.org>

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Friday, February 6, 1998

  Today's Headlines
- Half-Life Screenshots
- Riot Story
- JK Editor, Patch Launcher

- Clan Listings
- Holy Wars 2
- PGL Wrap-up
- CyberAthlete Mod
- Linux Console Sniffer
- RIVA Benchmarks
- Game Demos
- .plans
- Site Seeing
- etc.
- Out of the Blue

- Yesterday

Half-Life Screenshots
There are two new Half-Life screenshots up on The Underworld. There is also an interview with Valve's Gabe Newell (in English) on LINK - Das Online Magazin (in German).

Riot Story
Parts 6& 7 of the Riot Storyline have been posted on the Riot: Mobile Armor page. Thanks Revolt!: Riot Information Center.

Jedi Editor, Patch Launcher

Clan Listings
Two new efforts have simultaneously launched, each in an effort to tackle the daunting task of listing all of the thousands (literally!) of Quake/Quake II clans out there in cyberspace:

Holy Wars 2
The first beta of Holy Wars for Quake II is up on the Holy Wars page.

PGL Wrap-up
There is a recap of the PGL Finals on Gamers Extreme.

CyberAthlete Mod
The tournament mod (152 KB) used in the CyberAthlete competitions has been released as a public beta. Details on the CA Tournament mod can be found in this Press Release.

Linux Console Sniffer
The Quickspy2 Linux console Q2 sniffer has been released on the Quickspy2 page. Here's the word from the author:

No need to launch SVGA or 3Dfx Quake 2 from X anymore. Quickspy2 by David Efflandt is now available for browsing servers and launching Q2 from the Linux console.

It is written in Perl using 'dialog' menus and progress gauges for server lists from the web or file menu.  Quickspy2 saves the last full list with hostnames resolved and duplicates removed and a low ping list for quicker reload.

Scriptname was used with permission of Rob Tansley author of the original Quickspy for QuakeWorld.

RIVA Benchmarks
The Tweakit Hardware Reference Site has benchmarks of Quake II using the new RIVA OpenGL ICD. They do a nice thorough job, testing two resolutions on no less than 22 systems ranging from a humble 6x86L 200 to a Pentium II overclocked to a cozy room warming 416 MHz. Thanks Billy "Booga Booga" Wilson (Voodoo Extreme).

Game Demos
A couple of new playable demos have been released: Calling it an "Alpha Technology release", Sierra has issued a playable demo of Earthsiege 3 (14.5 MB), the latest in a line of Mech games (thanks Page Fault), also available on GameCenter. Also, thanks Prophet for word that GameSpot's BattleZone Preview features a playable demo of BattleZone (20.3 MB), Activision's action/strategy game that's a descendant of the old vector-based arcade game (that grey-beards like myself played). Also, on Activision's Battletech site there's word on how you can win an original BattleZone stand-up arcade game, Canopus Pure 3D graphics boards, or Battlezone Strategy Guides and T-shirts.

.plans

Site Seeing

etc.

Out of the Blue
I received an email from a Quake player at Dr. Solomon's who gave specific instructions opn how to deal with the Anxiety II virus using their product, so I posted it in the Virus Hotlline.

Thursday, February 5, 1998 Link of the day: Symantec Anti-Virus Downloads

  Today's Headlines
- QuakeCast
- Exclusive MoTS Screenshots
- AnachroChat

- Point Release Update
- X-Men Patch
- Expert Quake
- Unreal Shareware Reg.
- Violent?
- studioMDx Release
- .wal Editor
- The Wages of .cin
- morbid Interview
- Charlie Wiederhold Interview
- Joel Thomas Interview
- Dakota Interview
- PReviews
- Site Seeing
- etc.
- Out of the Blue

- Yesterday

QuakeCast
Tonight on QuakeCast we'll talk with Joe Perez, and maybe Garth from the PGL and we'll have Tonka as an in-studio guest. QuakeCast begins at 9:00 PM Eastern time, Real player required.

Exclusive MoTS Screenshots
I managed to get my hands on some exclusive screenshots of the soon to be released Jedi Knight mission pack, Mysteries of the Sith. MoTS is looking good: boy does colored lighting make a big difference. I switched one of the more redundant ones for the tree shot, which I forgot to post at first, even though it was one of my favorites:

camera_4.jpg (55253 bytes) blaster.jpg (50847 bytes)
Too bad you can't... ...Whoa. Never Mind!
lev1_3.jpg (38746 bytes) mp_trees.jpg (57813 bytes)
*Bzzzt* *Bzzzt* Nice Tree!
saber_throw.jpg (33252 bytes) sniper_1.jpg (17844 bytes)
The Saber Throw Oooo, sniper scope

AnacroChat
There will be an IRC chat session with Tom Hall, Joey Liaw, Rich Carlson, and Larry Herring of ION Storm's Anachronox team tomorrow (Friday) evening at 900 PM Central Time in irc.alpha3d.com #Anachronox. Thanks Anachronews.

Point Release Update
id's Barrett "Bear" Alexander is quoted heavily on the nature of the Quake II Point Release in this GameSpot Point Release Update (thanks d-bug). Here's a quote:

The Point Release will be available over the Internet, Alexander said, but once the PR is finished, Quake II will be remastered to include everything on the Point Release. "Subsequent reorders of Quake II will have (the Point Release features and fixes) included on them," he said.

Alexander also insists that the Point Release should not be taken as a sign that id needed to rush the release of Quake II to meet a holiday season release, as has been rumored.

"None of this would have gone on the initial release," he says.

X-Men Patch
A patch (Point Release?) for X-Men Quake has been released on the Zero gravity website. Thanks Sinbad.

Expert Quake
Version 1.1 of Expert Quake has been released on the Expert Quake page featuring Linux support and Gibstats 1.2 logging.

Unreal Shareware Registration
The March issue of Computer Gaming World mentions you can register to receive word on when the Unreal shareware is released on this page on GT Interactive's website. Thanks L0rdCha0s.

Violent?
There's an article up on the (newly redesigned) Apogee/3D Realms Web Site called Senate Attempting to Ban Violent Games reprinted from OGR. The attempt to litigate violence out of games is also mentioned in Gamesmania News.

studioMDx Release
Version 0.8 of the studioMDx model editor, for Quake and Quake II models, is out on the studioMDx Page as an unsupported release. Thanks Prophet.

.wal Editor
A program to view and edit Quake II's .wal format texture files called Wally has been released by Team BDP. This program allows you to (among other things), import bitmaps, view them tiled, set flags, and set animation frames.

The Wages of .cin
Version 0.01 of the Quake II Cinematic Specs (not to be confused with 3D Glasses) have been posted on BotTim's QW Bot Home Page as a resource to potential Quake II movie makers. On the .cin front, terraFORMA is working on a project called the Seven Deadly .cin's, you can find more details about their movie project on their page. The first Sin .cin has been released, titled Sloth (21 KB), also available on cdrom.com.

Interviews

PReviews

"In the years since id's masterpiece, a lot companies have tried to top Doom and Doom 2. Many have come close, but none has equaled the thrills of exploring the dark passageways of Doom. Dark Forces, from LucasArts could have usurped the throne, if the "save" worked and it had a multi-player mode. Even Quake and Quake 2, although technically superior, can't match Doom's quality on all levels of play."

Site Seeing

etc.

Out of the Blue
I'm getting caught up after the recent excitement. I've received some questions about detecting and removing the virus, so I'll try and do the best I can to provide a resource on this subject on this page, and will update it as information comes in if necessary.

Wednesday, February 4, 1998 Link of the day: Symantec Anti-Virus Downloads

  Today's Headlines
- Beta RIVA OpenGL ICD
- Virus Free Eraser
- H2 Mission Pack Mania
- Loki's Minions Source
- Ninja Quake
- Quake Scene Builder
- bsp2wrl2
- .plans
- Assassin 3D Interview
- QuakeOn Interview
- Boston Chick Interview
- John Romero Interview
- PReviews
- Site Seeing
- etc.

- Out of the Blue
- Yesterday

Beta RIVA OpenGL ICD
nVidia has released the Beta RIVA 128 OpenGL ICD for Windows 95 (1.2 MB) providing significantly improved performance and visual quality in Quake and Quake II on RIVA cards. Thanks RivaZone by way of Voodoo Extreme.

Virus Free Eraser
Beta 0.51 of the Eraser Bot is up on the Impact Development Page (along with an apology from Ridah) which is simply the 0.5 update minus any unwelcome parasites. Available as a Win95/NT Installer (713 KB), a zip file (472 KB), and a Linux archive (which I won't mirror 'cause they always end up corrupted on my end). On the subject of the virusing, I received an email from the original source of the virus on Ridah's system, which I was asked to post as a public apology, so it's in the MailBag (having missed it myself, I certainly can't hold this against him, personally). Thanks to everyone who wrote in with words of understanding about posting that here (I presume the hate mail is delayed as people get their systems back on-line).

Hexen II Mission Pack Mania
Phoebus sends word that Activision's Hexen II site has a few goodies from the upcoming Hexen II mission pack, Portal of Praevus: the first character sketch to be released, two brand new screenshots, and an interview with lead artist Les Dorscheid.

Loki's Minions Source
The Source code for Loki's Minions CTF has been released on their, not one, but two homepage(s). Pick a page, any page.

Ninja Quake
Version 1.0 of Ninja Quake (for classic Quake) is out on the Ninja Quake Page (actually it has been for nearly a week, and I meant to try it before posting this, oh well).

Quake Scene Builder
Quake II Scene Builder, or QSB, is a program that allows you compose scenes made up of models from Quake 2. Available on the Quake Scene Builder home page.

bsp2wrl2
The first version of bsp2wrl2, a Quake II BSP to VRML converter is up on the bsp2wrl Page. Can a Quake Map/Website be far behind?

.plans

Interviews

"ION Storm released their first title, Daikatana, last year, almost in direct competition with id's Quake II. Although it boasts bigger, better, more numerous and uglier monsters than its counterpart, by a neat twist of irony, Daikatana uses the 3D Quake engine licensed from id Software."

PReviews
The Jedi Knight add-on pack Mysteries of the Sith is reviewed on Gamesmania. Thanks JediKnight.Net.

Site Seeing

etc.

Out of the Blue
First and foremost, I want to apologize to anyone who suffered with the virus in the Eraser bot installer posted here yesterday. The rule of thumb on the Internet is to only download files from sources you trust, and I know that many consider Blue's News as one of those trustworthy sites, and I could not feel worse about failing that trust. All files posted here are scanned: Unfortunately, my copy of VirusScan from McAfee did not pick up on the Anxiety.II.1600 virus in the installer (I'm told that others were protected by McAfee, so it may have been my fault). I feel especially bad for the first person that wrote asking about the warning he got from Norton Anti-virus (available from Symantec Anti-Virus Downloads, thanks Redwood for the link and the recommendation), because I wrote him telling him I believed it to be a false positive. Of course, I didn't write him back until running the installer myself, which brings me to where I've been. Roughly 24 (sleepless) hours after infecting my system with the Anxiety.II.1600, I am back up and running (this was, remarkably, my first infection, and it took me some time to effectively deal with it). Again, please let me apologize to anyone who got zapped by this virus: While dealing with my own clean-up, I found myself quite angry, and I know I wouldn't blame anyone who was going through a virus-induced system reinstall for feeling the same anger, and focusing it on me: I 'd feel the same way too.

Tuesday, February 3, 1998 Blue's news Banner and Button submissions
  Important!
- Eraser Bot Problem

  Today's Headlines
- RIVA 128 OpenGL Soon
- New Testament in Q2 Bible

- Forsaken Playable Demo
- PGL Coverage
- Unreal Movie
- Sinful Elexis Shot
- New Total 3D Drivers
- Campaign
- jawMD2
- HexMatch Source
- Jedi Skins
- .plans
- Competitions
- Site Seeing
- etc.
- Out of the Blue

- Yesterday

RIVA 128 OpenGL ICD Beta Soon
There's an article on bootNET that says that nVidia will be releasing a beta of the OpenGL ICD for RIVA 128 cards this week, maybe as early as tomorrow. There are screenshots there (in 960x720 resolution, no less) showing greatly improved visual quality over the first two alpha drivers, and the word they give on performance sounds like similar improvements have been made in that area as well:

Remember, these performance scores are far from final, but they show incredible promise---especially in 800x600. nVidia promises even greater performance with the final beta release. 

System: Pentium II 300Mhz Card: nVidia Riva 128 AGP w/4MB SGRAM

Quake2 timedemo map demo2.dm2 640x480=38.6fps 800x600=29.4fps 960x720=20.5fps

Other improvements in visual quality have also been taken into account, with the skies showing less banding and rounded, smoother particle effects. nVidia should have this beta driver up 'hopefully' by Wednesday, the 4th of February.

New Testament in the Q2 Bible
The next update to Thresh and Kenn's Quake II Bible has been posted up on Gamers Extreme covering console commands and system optimization.

Eraser Bot Problem
There seems to be a very large problem with the Eraser Bot Beta released this afternoon (if you consider something that wacks up your Quake II installation a problem). Though I had no signs from McAfee that there is anything malicious in the file, I have had reports that there was a virus according to some people's scanners. I will post more when I know it (including what to do to get your Quake II installation up again).

Forsaken Playable Demo
A playable demo of Forsaken (14.3 MB - DirectX 5 required), a 3D shooter reminiscent of Descent, has been released by Acclaim (thanks Redwood). The demo, in which you do battle on hover-bikes, features two single player levels and support for deathmatch with up to four combatants. Filled with neat eye candy, including the best missile smoke trails I can recall seeing (even cooler than those in Wing Commander Prophecy), the demo, according to the read me, has nothing on the final version, calling it "the difference between a sketch and the finished painting". There is also an in store CD demo that can be purchased, which adds more sound effects, 4 different biker voices and 2 music tracks, as well as some other Acclaim stuff.

PGL Coverage
There are articles in the Houston Chronicle and Wired News (thanks Robert E. Waring).

Unreal Movie
A longer version of the Unreal movie released this Christmas has been posted on The Village in Real format. Thanks Jeremy Hinton. The Village is in Australia, and local copies can also be found on Unreal Nation and Unreal.Org.

Sinful Elexis Shot
There's an image of sultry Sin villainess Elexis Sinclair up on HardCorps SiN News (any sexier and it would be Hardcore Sin News).

New Total 3D Drivers
Version 2.30.02 of the Win95 Drivers for the Vérité 1000-based Total3D (1.5 MB) have been released on the newly revamped Canopus Website. Thanks Jamal Qureshi.

Campaign
Version 0.05 of the Campaign mod is up on the Campaign page, along with word about plans to possibility of future integration of the Cluster mod. Thanks HoseHead.

jawMD2
Version 1.28 of jawMD2, the OpenGL MD2 Viewer for Windows95/NT and Linux, has been released on the jawMD2 page, with some brand new features, including a new skin quick-selection control.

HexMatch Source Released
The source code for HexMatch, the teamplay mod for Hexen II that helps reduce lag while inhibiting cheating, has been released on the HexDev page.

Jedi Skins
There is a new skinpack for Jedi Knight up on JediKnight.Net that goes a step beyond with 32 professional-quality skins with new sounds. Here's a page where you can check them out.

.plans

Competitions

Site Seeing

etc.

Out of the Blue
Okay, I'll post the winning banner from the banner submissions later, but first, here is the new Blue's News button. Thanks bUkE and every person that took the trouble to send in artwork, it is greatly appreciated:

m_blu_butt.gif (6114 bytes)

Monday, February 2, 1998 Blue's news Banner and Button submissions

  Today's Headlines
- Hexen2World
- Monster 3d II

- Superheroes
- TagYerIt
- Battle of the Sexes
- QERadiant
- LA Quake
- UnrealEd
- Jay Wilson Interview
- .plan
- Previews
- Site Seeing
- etc.
- Out of the Blue

- Yesterday

Hexen2World
Word in Rick Johnson's .plan is that he's gearing up to add QuakeWorld lag-reduction technology to Hexen II (thanks HexenWorld):

Well, after months of doing work which I still can't get into, I've finally been given official time to work on H2World. I'll be starting full time on it later this afternoon. Next week, a few other programmers will be joining me to clean up the scripting code, to make it more net friendly (i.e. do stuff on the client side).

I'll also include any minor bug fixes that have been done in the mission pack so far. This will also include new .PAK files which will contain models that are about 1/3 less in size (so you should have less caching problems with machines that have 16 megs of memory).

Of course, learning from past mistakes, no predicitions on when it will be available, but know that it is being worked on full time by myself, and with other programmers next week.

Sorry for the delays, but you have to remember, that not everything is always under my control, atleast not yet :)

Monster 3D II
Diamond has announced a release date (currently listed as March 2) for their Voodoo 2-based Monster 3D II and a suggested price of $249.98 (US). Information on some of the pre-ordering options can be found here. Thanks Michael Clinton.

Quake II Mods:
A few Quake II updates:

UnrealEd
Epic Megagames' Tim Sweeney sent some information on Unreal scripting and editing, along with a screenshot of UnrealEd (213 KB), over to Game Design Central. Thanks Unreal News - Australia.

Jay Wilson Interview
Jay Wilson, Blood 2 Project Leader is interviewed on Blood2.com.

.plan
Apogee/3D Realms' George Broussard updated his .plan with an interesting question on whether .plan files are private or public statements.

PReviews

Site Seeing

etc.

Out of the Blue
Okay, one more bout of entries in the call for buttons and banners

Sunday, February 1, 1998 Blue's news Banner and Button submissions

  Today's Headlines
- Thresh Wins PGL
- H2 Mission Pack Screens
- JailBreak
- DamageMatch
- Omicron Review
- Competitions
- Ridah Interview

- Riotgrrl Interview
- Site Seeing
- Departments
- etc.
- Out of the Blue

- Yesterday

Thresh Survives Scare to Win PGL
Thresh emerged as the winner of the PGL action division after suffering a defeat at the hands of Reptile that pushed him to the brink in the double elimination PGL finals. Thresh defeated Unholy to nail down the losers bracket and then beat Reptile twice in a row, 5 to -1 on DM2 and 5 to 2 on DM6 to take the crown. Complete on-the-scene coverage can be found on Gamers Extreme's PGL Coverage, the All Games Network, and PlanetQuake's PGL Coverage. Here are demos of the final matches from Gamers Extreme (where there are a bunch more):

Finals Game 1
Thresh's POV (779 KB) Reptile's POV (787 KB)
Finals Game 2
Thresh's POV (806 KB) Reptile's POV (788 KB)

Hexen II Mission Pack Screenshots
AVault has posted five screenshots, three of them new, from the upcoming Hexen II mission pack, Portal of Praevus, along with a brief preview.

JailBreak
Version 1.3 of JailBreak for Quake II is out on the Jailbreak page. Thanks -=[GaToR]=-.

DamageMatch
Version 1.2 of DamageMatch for Quake II is up on Destroy's QuakeD Site. DamageMatch is a deathmatch mod that scores points for the amount of damage you deal out to your opponents, rather than number of frags racked up.

Omicron Review
There's a review of the Omicron Bot up on PeeJ's Deathmatch Pineapple.

Competitions

Interviews

Site Seeing

Departments
Made another large update to the LAN Parties page, including a firm date for Fragapalooza 98 and links to the House of LAN, that covers the scene, and Q2 Lan, which focuses solely on Quake II LAN parties. Also, on the subject, Devon "Goddess" Henderson Webmaster of The LAN Scene is compiling a LAN Party FAQ, and asks those with experiences hosting that would be helpful to share to email her.

etc.
They're kind of old, but there are some cool screenshots of a 3D game in progress on the Starbreeze Homepage. Thanks David Vest ... A new Quake comic called Life With Portax is up here. Not much develops in the first issue, but the art is pretty good, so it may turn out to be pretty cool once more plot is revealed ... A tale of a Quake road trip that culminates in visit to a llama farm is told in LuNcH & Siren's Awesome Adventure. Thanks Douglas E. Thompson ...

Out of the Blue
Some nifty entries in with today's banners and buttons. Tomorrow I'll post what comes in today and pick the one that'll be used. Again, huge thanks to all who have bothered with this. It's appreciated.

Saturday, January 31, 1998 Blue's news Banner and Button submissions
  Today's Headlines
- tokay IRC Log
- New Unreal Scans
- Pre-Order Half-Life
- Video Card Overclocking
- More Thresh & the PGL
- Battle of the Sexes
- YPOD Doom TC

- .plans
- Site Seeing
- etc.
- Out of the Blue

- Yesterday

tokay IRC Log
Here's a log of American "tokay" McGee's IRC interview last night (thanks Brian Bergen), here's another copy word-wrapped for easier web-viewing. Most interesting revelation of the  interview: The Point Release will likely contain seven deathmatch levels

New Unreal Scans
There are a pair of cool Unreal scans on UnrealNation from Computer Gaming World: one an in-game shot of a dead (busty) player, and a large scan of the two page advertisement.

Pre-Order Half-Life
There's an ordering page up on Sierra On-Line's Half-Life page that allows you to pre-order Half-Life. It seems like a communications glitch is in effect, since the main page says Half-Life will be "available mid-April 1998", but the ordering page says: "Products will not ship until Monday, February 2nd due to inventory. Thank you for your patience." I think it's pretty safe to say that since it is not yet complete, Half-Life will not be shipping this Monday regardless of what that page says. Expect a clarification or two on this one as we go along. Thanks Ritalin Boy[CoC].

Video Card Overclocking
There's an extensive guide to Video Card Overclocking on the Fast Graphics Site that gives tips for eeking maximum performance out of most all current video cards (and probably voiding your warranty along the way). Thanks to Wicked at Voodoo Extreme (who never, as far as I've heard, suffers performance anxiety).

More on Thresh & the PGL
There's an article on PCGamer about the Thresh-Gamers Extreme-PGL connection that presents a lot of quotes from those involved from Gamers Extreme and TEN. Thanks PorkBelly.

Battle of the Sexes
Version 2.3 of the Battle of the Sexes teamplay mod for Quake II is out on Spinoza's Quake 2 Mods Page.

YPOD Doom TC
I couldn't figure out why I was getting so much email asking about the YPOD: Doom TC for Quake, until someone mentioned that Blues' News is listed as a source of information on the conversion in a recent PC Format magazine. If you are here looking for the Doom TC, the homepage is Moxill Interactive Quake TC Headquarters.

.plans

Site Seeing

etc.
Check out GameFan Quake2 Server Stats, an interesting web output of GameFan's Quake II server based on a modified version of Dave Mongoose Feldman's Quake 2 frag logging program ... Speaking of log parsing: Log Parser of the Day is GibStats 1.2, which supports version 1.2 of their logging standard (which will allow mod authors to easily integrate log parsing into their mods) ... There is a little info about the status of the RIVA 128 Open GL drivers that Brian Hook raved about recently in his .plan up on Dimension 128. Thanks Voodoo Extreme ... Version 2.10 of the Wmned, the funny name maker for Quake, Hexen II, and Quake II is up on the Wmned page ... SubRats' photos from the T3 finals in Los Angeles can be found on this page (an AVI format movie promised to come) ... Word is the Star Wars Doom TC has been revived with the release of the Linux Doom source code ... More Doom port news is that Doom for the BeOS is being worked on according to a report on Be Leading Edge. Thanks Daniel Switkin ... Funeral for a beloved Quake server: zeta.res.cms.dmu.ac.uk 1996-1998 R.I.P. Thanks SPG.bobby-2 ... I understand they are trying to promote some new online-only games, but the comments about online Quake and other games in the article Test Drive Awesome New Online Games -- Free (thanks Ragnarok) on  ZDNet AnchorDesk shows an interesting perspective on deathmatch over at the ZDNet braintrust:

"...Even when everything works perfectly, many players have been surprised to find that the most popular online titles - such as Diablo, Quake II and Red Alert -- are the same games they've been playing alone for ages, and thus offer little (if anything) new in terms of the gaming experience...."

Out of the Blue
Lots of banners to go through: I'll post them a bit later.

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All rights reserved. Copyright © 1998 by Stephen Heaslip