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Friday, July 18, 1997

At QuakeCon

Thursday, July 17, 1997

At QuakeCon

Wednesday, July 16, 1997

Off in the BlueJet
I've got to rock and roll to get on to QuakeCon, but there are a couple of stories to touch on before I go. I'm not sure how I'm going to update from Texas without a computer or a 'net connection, but where there's a will there's a way.

QSpy 5.3 Beta 2
QuakeSpy 5.3 Beta 2 (featuring context sensitive help) is being made available to registered users on the QuakeSpy homepage.

PingBot Author Responds
I received the following from James Loe, the author of the PingBot:

I would like to offer a public apology to all members of the Quake community that have been unduly affected in a negative manner by any of my creations (LoefBot and PingBot). I would be more than happy to lend my programming skill to any person or persons who is currently working on or has plans for a feasible bot detector. All those wishing to contact me in these regards can do so at jamesloe@mindspring.com. On a final note, I would like to say that I do not regret any of my actions in the past.

TEN to Host All Female Tourney
The Total Entertainment Network has announced it is co-hosting (with Slam Site) the All-Female Quake Tourney, sponsored by id Software, Ritual Entertainment, Rogue Entertainment, and the Imagine Games Network.

The international tournament, which will be held via the TEN service, will begin on July 26, with the eight finalists squaring off at the Slam Site location in Los Angeles on August 30. Registration for the tournament will continue through July 18. More than 100 female Quake players have registered for the tournament, including entrants from the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, the Phillipines, Canada, Hawaii, and throughout the continental U.S. More than US$10,000 in prizes will be awarded to the top finishers, but the tourney’s organizers are stressing that this is an event more than a competition, and all female Quake fans should participate, regardless of skill level. The Clan Ring will also assist in administering tournament.

Tuesday, July 15, 1997

Ping Bot Part 2
I had the opportunity to chat briefly with John Cash concerning the Ping Bot, and he said he was taking a look at it (and that he hates cheaters), so hopefully this kind of abuse can be cut off at the source.

Paintball Patch
Quake Innovations, whose QTeam patch contained a Paintball variant, is planning on releasing their Paintball patch at QuakeCon. I don't know where I've been, but this is the first I've heard of this new PB project (being developed with the owner of a Paintball range to ensure accuracy), but in looks very cool in these screenshots. Thanks fu510n.

3D API Wars
I guess the title of Gamespot's Open GL versus Direct3D article puts this in some sort of perspective: Geeks Grapple Over 3-D. Thanks Jeffrey A. Reitman.

New Midnight CTF
Version 4.12 of Midnight CTF on the newly relocated Midnight CTF page.

Gaming Job
Cavedog Entertainment has started a "worldwide search" for the best and the brightest developers in the business! They are currently looking to hire 3D level designers for an action/adventure game currently in production. If you're interested, send your resume to: jobs@cavedog.com.

Daikatana Preview
OGR has a Daikatana Preview up with eight new 800x600 screenshots and three more that had previously been released at lower resolutions. Thanks Hudd of Hudd's Daikatana News and Eye on John Fan Club (you think I'd have the inside track on this OGR stuff, but noooo).

DEMentED
A preliminary version of DEMentED is out on the DEMentED page (try here if your DNS doesn't have that yet). DEMentED is the demo editor used to edit Ranger Gone Bad 3 (which is due in a couple of days itself). Thanks Redwood.

Quake 2 Intro Screens
There are some really cool examples of the Quake II opening animation sequence by Paul Steed up on Redwood's. Awesome looking stuff.

Unreal Screenshots
There are four new Unreal screenshots up on Unreal.org. Thanks Prophet.

US News and (Quake)World Report
Dennis "Thresh" Fong is mentioned in the July 21 issue of U.S. News and World Report. Here's the online version. Thanks Hamster.

PingBot Detector
There's word on the MNM Creations page on how to detect the PingBot (something a llama uses to appear like their ping is higher than it actually is). Although it's not perfect, the method is simple and fairly effective: check everyone's pings during a pause, as a normal client will have a 0 ping while paused. While most net servers, thankfully, can't be paused, in day-to-day play the use of the PingBot is just kind of weak anyway. But in tournament play (where access to the server and ability to pause and spot check is more likely) with high and low ping divisions this can, hopefully, help prevent cheating.

Spy School
Inferno has a Spy School for TeamFortress players to learn espionage ("serpentine, Shell!"). Also, for everyone who's Mother dreams of them becoming a doctor, the next planned project is a Medical School (for aspiring Medics). Thanks Prophet.

Quake Athletic Division
The Quake Athletic Division page has been updated with new that the teams original leader has returned, and that this puts their WavePain (jetskiing) patch on a faster track towards completion. Thanks fu510n.

Qoole Video Tutorials
The first five video tutorials (.AVI format) that will go on the Qoole CDROM are available for download from ftp://ftp.qoole.com/pub/tutorial/. If you can handle downloading them at 4-11 MB apiece, the Qoole team would like some feedback. Thanks Prophet.

Quake Funnies
Elfstones Funny Quake Stuff is Quake cartoons and such. Thanks Prophet.

Interviews

Movement

LAN Parties
New events added to the LAN Parties listing: Bellevue, WA; Anaheim, CA; Holland (QDay2!); Honolulu, HI, and a pair of planning stages projects, both in Chicago, IL (maybe they'll merge).

Monday, July 14, 1997 Happy Bastille Day

Telefrag
If you're interested in having your site on Telefrag drop by and contact them, as they are once again ready to offer web hosting.

Quake in the Mainstream
Thanks Rogue for word that this week's (July 21) issue of Newsweek has an article on the All-Female Quake Tourney on page 12, in the "Cyberscope" section.

Screenshot Mecca
The Screenshot Mecca is living up to its name, having just adding over 150 screenshots from EverQuest, Blade, Messiah, Dark Vengeance, Wheel Of Time, and Riven (the sequel to Myst).

Wolfen's Lair
Wolfen's Lair is a new site that lays out the steps a beginning editor should consider when laying out a map.

Valve Hires Ben Morris, Acquires WorldCraft
Valve Software has announced that it has acquired Ben Morris' WorldCraft, and Ben Morris too! Worldcraft will be tuned to support Half-Life, and will be included with the game on its release. Also announced is the hiring of writer Marc Laidlaw. Here's an excerpt from the press release:

BELLEVUE, Wash. - Games developer Valve today announced that it has acquired Worldcraft, the leading 3D action game level development tool. An enhanced version of the editor will be included with Valve's debut release, Half-Life, and will take advantage of the numerous technical advancements found in the Half-Life engine. Worldcraft, called "sleek, swift, and completely intuitive" by Wired magazine, has long been the favorite map editor among gamers developing customized levels for Quake, the popular action game from id Software. Ben Morris, the developer of Worldcraft, has joined Valve to continue development on the editor, as well as to create additional tools for Half-Life add-on developers. Also joining the team is renowned cyber-punk author Marc Laidlaw. Both Morris and Laidlaw will be working on Half-Life, one of the most highly-anticipated games of the upcoming holiday season. Half-Life, a 3D first-person action game, combines advanced, proprietary technology with genre-breaking gameplay elements. It is being published by Sierra On-Line and is scheduled for a November 1997 release on PC CD-ROM.

"Worldcraft has always been known for it's power and ease of use," said Ben Morris, who also developed the popular DCK (Doom Construction Kit). "But the newest version of Worldcraft will be even more advanced since it is being built for Half-Life's innovative engine. Level developers are going to love building new worlds for Half-Life."

"Having Ben Morris and Marc Laidlaw join Valve reflects our desire to build technologically advanced games with innovative gameplay," said Gabe Newell, Valve's co-founder and Managing Director. "We know gamers want powerful tools and extensibility to get the most from state-of-the-art action games, and we know gamers are already fans of Marc's writing and story-telling in more traditional media. Ben and Marc will both have significant impact on Half-Life."

Romero Radio
This Saturday from 1:00 to 2:00 PM Central The Happy Puppy Radio Show will premiere, chatting with John Romero (thanks Jay).

CTF Expansion Project Extends Deadline
The CTF Expansion Project has extended its map submission deadline to August 8. Details can be found at the CTF Expansion Project page.

QuakeWorld Heads Up
There is an update on QuakeWorld.net (thanks Randy) with screenshots of the upcoming new QuakeWorld HUD (Heads-up Display), as well as word on the state of the next version:

Physics have also improved, acceleration up ramps has been tweaked (Now you can make the jump into the mega-health/rocket launcher room on dm6). Also player clipping has improved significantly, it's almost impossible to walk through other players. DirectInput support is being implemented, and if you have one of those Microsoft IntelliPoint mice, you can even make use of it's wheel!

SkinGate: The Final Word?
I received a letter from Dan Bickell following up the Skin story:

After communication back and forth between myself and Mr. Blair of the former Skins R' Us site, some misunderstandings have come to light and Mr. Blair has made apologies. He has once again updated the message on the former site of Skins R' Us making apologies to those that were infringed upon and defrauded. Apparently, it appears that Mr. Blair wasn't aware of how current copyright laws work, and made some mistakes that he now acknowledges. I think Mr. Blair has learned a lesson here, and I wouldn't discourage anyone from having dealings with him.

Hopefully, the Quake community has learned something from this unfortunate situation. I'm very pleased by all of the email that I've been getting to see how the Quake community has showed so much concern about this issue. It shows that we are all actually part of a "real" community.

On another note, I want to say that I've recently seen some of Mr. Blair's more recent works and I am happy to say that he's been creating original pieces that aren't derivative of other artist's work, and his artwork has improved. The skins that were in question before were older works of his that he had posted at the Skins R' Us site.

While on the subject, I want to note my own error in failing to contact the maintainer of Skins R Us before running the story, trusting my own judgment on the origination of the skins in question. By not contacting the subject of the allegations I was failing to practice good journalism (though, in this case, my error did not result in any inaccuracies in the story).

Unreal Chat
There will be an online conference with Epic Megagames' Unreal development team on IGN's Game Palace on Wednesday, July 23 at 6:00 PM (no time zone listed, I'll assume it's Pacific time, as that's list for some other events). Thanks Prophet, who also tells me that this requires the Palace chat client (the IGN site is pretty bare about info on this).

Screensavers Redux
After some emails back and forth with the author (I am now an uncredited beta tester, I guess), the updated Quake 2 screensaver (1.1 MB) has been re-posted on the Screensaver Archive, fixing the missing file error.

Taking Some Luster Off of Shiny
Brian Hook updated his .plan reacting to this Gamespot preview of Messiah that implies that Messiah (an upcoming game by Shiny Entertainment) is going to take the lead from id Software in 3D engine technology. The original response to this is on Redwood's from Paul Steed. INAP (I'm not a programmer) but everything I understand about the current state of 3D engine programming agrees with Paul's assessment (read the entirety of Paul's response on Redwood's):

The bottom line is that I've met quite a few luminaries and impressive programmers, designers and artists in our industry. I've helped develop Origin's early polygonal technology and pretty much keep up with the advances every where. John Carmack is the NUMBER ONE programmer on the planet when it comes to 3D technology in gaming. Period. He's like the EF Hutton of gaming technology. When he talks, people listen.

He has already told me prophetically that (at the very least) we will keep the lead in the 3D action genre for the next five years. I have no reason to doubt him.

QuakeRally Screenshot
The coolest QuakeRally screenshot (by far) has been posted on the QuakeRally page (thanks fu510n), showing Wendigo's new map. Wow!

Daika-Tune-A
The ninth, and final, Daikatana Music clip has been posted on Eye On Ion. Thanks Prophet.

Requiem Special Edition
Version 1.04 of Requiem Special Edition has been released on the Requiem page, fixing the client connection bug, allows bots to appear in the console and scoreboard like a real player, and featuring a new Axe-Warfare mode, and modified weapons.

Deathmatch eXtreme Platinum 1.1
Version 1.1 of Deathmatch eXtreme Platinum Edition has been released on the Omega Page fixing some bugs. Thanks Prophet.

TeamFortress Update
There is a large update on the TeamFortress Page noting that version 2.6 is due soon, that August 24 is TeamFortress' one year anniversary, and that the TF Troubleshooting FAQ has been updated. Thanks Prophet.

Let There Be Light
Forgot to mention this yesterday, Autolycus wrote with word that he's posted a new version of light.exe on the Forge.

The Quake Newbies Guide
DaKoTa has updated the Quake Newbies Guide (the best resource of its kind by far), to cover the remaining upcoming Quake engine games: Duke Nukem Forever, Half-Life, and Sin.

Quake 2 DLL Page
Quebec Barf (remember the QuakeWorld rankings page?) has begun a new site (with Haakonsen) called the Quake 2 DLL's Archives devoted to being a DLL resource on the arrival of Quake 2.

QuakeWorld 32 Design Homepage
The QuakeWorld 32 Design Homepage is geared towards level design tips for 32 player levels.

Not Summer School!!
The summer session of QuakeClass is gearing up to help interested students learn QuakeC.

MacQuake Site
The MacQuake Nexus is a new site eagerly anticipating the Macintosh Quake Port (thanks zav). Interestingly, they have files and level areas prepared for mods and maps made with a Mac. I assume that, like Doom, the Mac will play maps made on the PC, though DeHackEd patches didn't work on MacDoom, so I guess a similar question exists about QuakeC and MacQuake (I'm betting it works cross-platform myself).

Interview

Contests

Movements

LAN Parties
No new events added to the LAN Parties listing today, but a lot of failed attempts. If you are trying to get your LAN party listed, please look at the listings already there, and try and supply all the appropriate details.

Sunday, July 13, 1997

BSP Fix
There is a fixed BSP 0.81 (as opposed to 0.82) up on BSP.com (thanks Prophet). This is only a new .exe to fix a couple of bugs.

New Waterhack
There's a new version of Waterhack, Dr. Splat's utility to allow non-GLQuake users to experience the splendor of transparent water up on the Waterhack page. The new version no longer creates transparent lava and teleports. Thanks Kevlar.

Skins R Us
There's a note on the former Skins R Us page offering to re-do skins for any dissatisfied clans. The maintainer of this site has expressed to me he is trying to take steps to make up for any transgressions he has committed.

Hexen 2 Appetizers
Thanks Phoebus (webmaster for Raven, and his eponymous Cult) for passing along the word that Activision updated their Hexen 2 website with a bunch of new screenshots and information.

Quake Rally Update
There is a glowing report on the QuakeRally page from Ridah describing the most recent LAN test for QuakeRally as a smashing success. Thanks fu510n.

Tremor TC
The first release of Tremor: Classic Quake has been released on the Tremor homepage. This cool sounding mod features multiple character classes, and an interesting approach to melee combat.

Quake Files
The first beta of another TC that has been released, the Quake Files puts you on the track of an insidious government controlled cloning project. Thanks Nakedman of NM's TC List.

UKCL Season One Concludes
The first season of the UK Clan League concluded yesterday with a championship match between the two top ranked clans in the league. In the final, the Quake Lords beat out the Quake Police Department 157-79. Season Two of the UKCL will begin Saturday August 2, and already over 40 clans are signed up.

Screensaver Archive Update
The Screensaver Archive has been opened as a spin-off site of the Screenshot Archive. A new version of the Quake 2 screensaver posted here a while back has been released featuring animated images, though I can't seem to get it to work on my machine (thanks ratking for the heads up that there seems to be a problem with that). There are also screensavers there for Daikatana (I tested out the Daikatana version and it worked fine), Sin, and Half-Life, there, with the promise of more to come. all the savers feature a save last shown image to wallpaper option and password protection.

Web Hosting
Mauls.com is offering web hosting for Clan sites, and Quake-related sites in general. More details are on www.mauls.com.

Assassin Review
I received an Assassin 3D controller to play around with some time ago, but I've found I'm not a good candidate to review alternate controllers (unless it was to get the truly die-hard mouser's opinion), since I started with the mouse on Wolfenstein. When I learned that my pal loonyboi (QuakeLab:MultiMedia, Keep Out!) was someone who actually used a trackball for Quake, I asked him if he wanted to check it out. He did, and he's written up his impressions for us. Here's a review of the Assassin 3D Controller by Jason "loonyboi" Bergman.

PC Games at QuakeCon
There's word on PCGames that they will be providing RealAudio coverage of QuakeCon. Thanks Prophet.

3D Graphics
Here's an interesting article called The Power Play in Gamasutra discussing a wide variety of facets of the 3D accelerator market and it's relationship to gaming development. Thanks Rotwang.

Regional TeamFortress

LAN Parties
New additions to the LAN Parties listing: Oklahoma City, OK, Tallahassee, FL, Boise, ID, and Big Spring/Midland, TX.

Saturday, July 12, 1997

Microsoft and OpenGL
Redwood dropped a line to mention there's a rant on Microsoft and OpenGL on his page with information on where you can write your congressman if you're really fired up about this.

John Carmack's Reading List
John Carmack updated his .plan with a recommended book for software developers, The Mythical Man-Month by Fred Brooks (I dug up some more links: here's the preface, and a review, or two, or three).

The Source of Abuse
Dave "ddt" Taylor sent along the release with the news that Crack dot Com is releasing the source code to Abuse:

AUSTIN, TX- Crack dot Com, developers of the cult-hit Abuse and the anticipated 3D action/strategy title Golgotha, is releasing the Abuse source code to the public domain.

The Abuse source code may be found at:

http://games.3dreview.com/abuse/files/abuse_pd.tgz

The Abuse engine, although almost two years old- an "ancient game" in this industry- still contains some features that many games today have not implemented, including a built-in LISP engine, a joinable peer-to- peer network architecture, portability to multiple operating systems, support for multiple screen resolutions, and an extremely advanced built-in editor with a portable window system.

Crack is owned and run by its two founders, Jonathan Clark and Dave Taylor, both still active programmers. Crack decided to release Abuse to the public domain as a gesture to programmers interested in learning how a commercial game is put together, who just want to play around with a 2D engine already stocked with content, or who would like to build up their experience optimizing or modifying a real-world engine. Crack would like to thank Electronic Arts and Bungie for agreeing to donate the Abuse shareware data to the public domain.

Crack dot Com is a small game development company located in Austin, Texas. The corporation was founded in 1996 by Dave Taylor, co-author of Doom and Quake, and Jonathan Clark, author of Abuse. Crack dot Com's web site is located at http://crack.com.

Gatling Gun 1.0
After a long period of no word on the Gatling Gun project that at one point produced a record string of beta releases, version 1.0 has been released on the Means of Destruction.

Final ThunderWalker CTF
Version 3.11 of ThunderWalker CTF is up at The Valley of the ThunderWalkers (I forgot to post this a couple of days ago, sorry). This is said to be the last version of ThunderWalker CTF (3.11 is a bug-fix over 3.1 the previous final version) "until probably Quake 2". Thanks Foozmelon.

Deathmatch eXtreme: Platinum edition
The Omega expansion team has released a new version of of Deathmatch eXtreme called Deathmatch eXtreme: Platinum edition on the Omega Homepage. Thanks Prophet.

New BSP
Version 0.81 of Yahn Bernier's Quake editor BSP has been released on BSP.com. Thanks Rotwang.

QuakeRally Release Soon?
The QuakeRally page has been updated with the news that the first public beta of QuakeRally might be released at QuakeCon. Thanks Zero|TQR.

End of QSoccer Updates?
Word on the QSoccer page is that no new updates are planned. It is still undecided whether or not a QSoccer level pack will be released. There is also word on the next project for the QSoccer team. A futuristic space shooter code named "Gamma" that will probably begin work after the release of Quake 2.

Centaur Interactive
The Centaur Interactive website is now on-line. C.I. is a newly formed company by TeamQuego, with more projects planned for the future.

LAN Parties
New items have been added to the LAN Parties listing for the following areas: Roanoke, VA; the University of Utah; North Alabama; Miami, FL; and New Orleans, LA.

Movement

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All rights reserved. Copyright 1997 by Stephen Heaslip