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Friday, October 16, 1998

Shogo Cheat Codes  [9:10 PM EDT]
Some of the Shogo Cheat Codes are up on PlanetShogo.

Anachronox Interview  [9:10 PM EDT]
There's an interview with Andrew Megowan, new lead programmer for Anachronox, up on the ION Storm website. Thanks Jeff at Voodoo Unlimited Power.

Raven Drivers  [9:10 PM EDT]
More Voodoo Banshee drivers, as Quantum 3D's Driver Downloads page has version 1.1 drivers for their Banshee-based Raven accelerators. Thanks Sharky Extreme.

MDK2  [8:30 PM EDT]
BioWare to Develop MDK2 for Sega Dreamcast and PC is the announcement of the plans for the sequel to Shiny's MDK (thanks David). The PC version is said to be expected shortly after the planned fourth quarter 1999 release of the Dreamcast version, and it sounds as though MDK2 will likely be single player only, like the original, as BioWare President Greg Zeschuk is quoted thus:

MDK2 represents the pinnacle of single player games. Our aim with MDK2 is to explore new directions and expand beyond the constrictive environments established in other 3D games.

Quake II Ground Zero Secrets  [8:09 PM EDT]
An update to GamesMania's Quake II Ground Zero Secret Guide makes it nearly complete (there are a few secrets still to be uncovered) through 12 levels of the game. Thanks Frans at 3D Action Gamers.

PlayStation Quake II Shots  [8:09 PM EDT]
A couple of new screenshots of Quake II running on a PlayStation are up on PSX.IGN.COM. Thanks QuakeStation.

Quake II Superheroes  [7:57 PM EDT]
Version 1.01 of Quake II Superheroes is now available as a .dll-only update, not a whole pak file. Since the last version was the final version, this is like a posthumous update, or something.

Shogo Point Release Update  [7:57 PM EDT]
Monolith programmer Mike Dussault's .plan has the latest on the point release for Shogo:

Time for another update. The Shogo patch is almost done, but we're going to continue to put it through extensive testing as a lot of stuff has changed.

Some cool tweaks have gotten in recently:
- Time of day.. very cool when it turns to night on a server.
- Variables to scale damage, tweak missile speeds, tweak respawn rates, etc.

TCP/IP modem games feel great! You get into the game quickly and you can barely tell you're playing over 28.8.

If there's time, we're going to reenable the 3rd person camera in multiplayer which makes for some cool screenshots.

At this point we're mainly fixing rare crash bugs and video card glitches. If you're from a video card company and want us to implement a fix, if you could email me (dussault@lith.com), that would be great. Even if you have already sent it, send it again with something that'll catch my eye like SWF 18, LIKES ENGINE PROGRAMMERS.. there's a flood of email coming in so requests might have gotten lost. If the fix requires something I can't detect with caps bits, it would _really_ help if you could tell me what to look for in GetDeviceIdentifier.

Off-Topic Demos  [7:57 PM EDT]
The Adrenaline Vault PC Release List has a 22 MB playable demo of Age of Empires: The Rise of Rome, the upcoming AOE expansion pack (the demo does not require AOE). Also, an Infinite Worlds alpha playable demo (over 40 MB) was released the other day. I.W. is a fantasy role-playing game that was previously called Mordor II. I was torn about posting it, it's pretty off-topic, but I really like posting word of free demos, so I think I'll just take the heat from the hardcore action crowd.

Banshee Drivers, Review  [7:57 PM EDT]
Wicked3D Support Drivers page has new version 1.30 drivers for the Voodoo Banshee-based Wicked Vengeance. Thanks Sharky Extreme. On this subject, HARDgame reviews the Maxi Gamer Phoenix, Guillemot's Voodoo Banshee offering.

Vigilance Gold  [7:57 PM EDT]
SegaSoft's Vigilance has gone gold for manufacturing, and should be in stores soon. Thanks Voodoo Extreme.

KHG SBLive!, Independence War  Fixes  [5:17 PM EDT]
MicroProse's Alex De Lucia, Producer on Klingon Honor Guard, sends along a temporary fix for KHG problems with the SBLive! (78 KB). Also, Particle Systems' Independence War FAQ reports a problem with the new Voodoo2 DX6 drivers (thanks 3DFlies.Com):

We've found that the 3Dfx DX6 Beta reference drivers can cause Independence War / I-War 3Dfx to crash. We recommend that you use the latest drivers from your board manufacturer, using Glide 2.53 instead.

Shogo a GoGo Again  [5:17 PM EDT]
As noted earlier (story), Shogo has appeared in stores early. Shogo Mobile Armor Division Shoots Into Retail Stores Early is a release from Monolith acknowledging the early shipment. Thanks Mike Sutherland. Also, here's Games Domain Review's Shogo preview. Thanks Frans at 3D Action Gamers.

Barrage Review  [5:17 PM EDT]
GamesMania reviews Barrage, giving Mango Grits' action flying shooter six "G"s out of ten (I think the human body can only withstand nine Gs). Thanks Frans at 3D Action Gamers

Anachroshots, Sharky's Diamonds  [5:17 PM EDT]
Sharky Extreme Anachronox shots and Games Domain Review's Anachronox preview (thanks Frans at 3D Action Gamers) both offer the same recently released screenshots of ION's upcoming Quake II engine RPG, with some artwork also featured in the Shark tank. Speaking of Sharky's report of their Diamond Multimedia visit is up with all the dirt on the latest gems from them.

Q2 Extremities Details  [2:41 PM EDT]
Andrew Smith posed a question to id Software's Anna Kang on whether authors of mods included in the just announced Quake II Extremities (story) would be compensated for their work (judging from the mail I've received, this is a burning question for many). Here's the reply:

I am able to say that the chosen mod authors will not only be published but paid. Agreements with the mod authors do not involve transfer of ownership of any property.

Anna Kang
id Software

Video Game Oscar Bid  [2:41 PM EDT]
Video gamer's film competes for an Oscar is a Wired Online story (thanks Jeff Magill) that announces that "Oddworld Inhabitants has submitted a 15 minute movie based on Oddworld: Abe's Exodus for Academy-Award consideration in the Animated Short category." Mark Hamill's Oscar dream need not die!

Unreal 2 On the Horizon  [1:42 PM EDT]
Unreal 2 on the Horizon is a short GameCenter blurb on the recent BitchX scoop that Unreal 2 would be done by Legend entertainment (thanks CiKoTiC). In addition to previously seen quotes from Epic's Mark Rein about the project (which has not yet actually started) the article adds a tidbit from Michael Verdu, chairman and CEO of Legend:

"We will be working on content while Epic handles the technology"

DWANGO to Close  [1:42 PM EDT]
Speaking of BitchX, the gaming insider is reporting that she's received a confirmation that DWANGO is shutting down today, and all game servers will be taken off-line. This saddens me if it's true, I'll always have a soft-spot for the Doom2 days on NYC DWANGO (shout outs to Bo, Fragman, Irontoes, Chrissy, Nagel, Flagg, even dred--you a-hole, and all the others I'm forgetting to mention), but I haven't played on there in a couple of years, so I that may say something about why this has come to pass.

Urban DM  [1:42 PM EDT]
Version 1.01 of Urban DM is up on the Urban Software Main Base. This updated Quake II mod offers new features like map voting and random messages, as well as bug fixes to things like flares and chasecam prediction. There are plans to add an Urban DM survival page to the CTF Survival Guide, and a Linux port is promised soon as well. If you are running an Urban DM server, please email , and he'll post the IP on the page, meanwhile there's a server up at: shell.california.com:27913.

Thrill Kill Killed  [1:42 PM EDT]
This has been reported before, but I've failed to touch on it yet, and it seems a fairly significant gaming story: Electronic Arts has canned the console fighting game Thrill Kill, an adult-only project that was about set for release when it was acquired by EA when they purchased Virgin. EA kills 'Thrill Kill' game before release is a ZDNet article that sums the situation up well (thanks CiKoTiC and SonOfCarmack). One of EA's contentions is that in addition to traditionally brutal fighting, the game (which is set in Hell), also depicts "sexual assaults." Former Virgin veep Julian Rignall is quoted as saying it is actually "designed to look like you're doing sexual acts, but...If you look closely, [the fighters] are too busy beating the crap out of people to do anything particularly obscene." (This is Chewbacca. Does that make sense to you? Look at the silly monkey.) One of the most interesting aspects of the decision is that EA does not plan to sell the game to another publisher. Here are a couple of quotes from the article that sum up the controversy: (Becker is Pat Becker, director of corporate communications at EA):

According to Rignall, this is a dangerous decision. "Obviously they have their reasons, but it sets an intriguing precedent. A software company buying up another company, then not releasing their games is not something that I agree with. I'd like to see them leave the choice with the consumer. There are many other companies out there who would happily market it."

According to Becker, EA has also received angry letters and telephone calls concerning the decision to cancel "Thrill Kill."

Q2Start  [1:42 PM EDT]
Version 1.0 of Q2Start is now available from the criminal masterminds who brought you Q-Start. This is a Quake II version of their front-end program.

Lithium II With ZBot Detection  [10:25 AM EDT]
Version 1.22 of the Lithium II Mod for Quake II (something that's become a real favorite of mine) is now available. In addition to other enhancements, this version also offers the first stab I've seen at ZBot (auto aim cheat) detection and kicking (mad props to Matt "WhiteFang" Ayres and Dnormlguy for working this out). Here's the poop on the ZBot stuff:

Lithium II v1.22 can reliably detect Zbot auto-aim clients (cheaters). Admins can choose to have them kicked immediately and/or log their information to a file. Cheaters ruin the game for everyone else, this feature should combat that issue.

S3 Unreal  [10:25 AM EDT]
An S3 Unreal Patch and Sample Content is now available for owners of Savage3D accelerators (thanks PlanetUnreal). The sample content is apparently a level showing off the Savage3D's savage texture compression.

Shogo a Gogo  [10:25 AM EDT]
I should have followed up on the mention of the first Shogo sighting yesterday (story) with word that I've received a virtual flood of emails detailing sightings, so it's likely it is now available most places in the US (while supplies last).

Ten Questions for Broussard  [10:25 AM EDT]
3DRealms' George Broussard is the latest to undergo the "Ten Questions gauntlet" over at False Dot Com, answering queries on Duke Nukem Forever (I assume the questions were written before the recent Prey happenings, as they go unmentioned).

Blood2 AI, Release Candidate  [10:25 AM EDT]
Monolith's Scott "Pookie Smoothbone" Schlegel updated his .plan on enhancements to the Blood2 AI for what he describes as a release candidate (which makes sense, as they're shooting for a Halloween release). Interestingly, it sounds like they are going to behave like bots (with "none of that wack-ass bot crap"). Here goes:

Got done a huge release candidate build for GT yesterday. The AI is looking a lot more pimp as well as deadly. Most navigation issues are taken care of while keeping low tick counts and NO SCRIPTING. Attacking tactics have been beefed up. The AI will deal and react to stuff like gunfire, bullet impacts nearby, differences in height, ledges, distance, damage and ammo amounts (the AI will take ammo and health pickups that are sitting around if they need them), searching and chasing, retreating, inter-AI fighting (Cabal vs monsters), etc. I have been playing through levels looking at how the AI behave in the actual levels. I can't even make it through a bunch of the levels and they aren't even done. The AI plays with the same restrictions and constraints as the player so there is none of that wack-ass bot crap like in Unreal. It is tough but reasonable and believable. And the best of all the AI is SCARY!!

Also there is a new Blood2 screenshot on Tha Blood Shack, who will be posting another a day for five more days, and a few more hi-resolution Blood2 shots on Screenshots Extreme, who will be posting another a day until Blood3 is released.

Doom to Quake II Maps  [10:25 AM EDT]
There's only one conversion up so far (E1M1), but (the almost unreadably dark) MapClassics plans on posting more conversions of classic Doom levels for Quake II. The conversions will be hand done (conversion utilities tend to create way too many brushes), and the plan is to offer two versions of each map, one using Quake II textures, and the other that you can extract the Doom textures from Doom and add them in for more authenticity (I'm not sure such measures are required any longer to avoid copyright issues, since the source for Doom has been released -- dunno how that effects the artwork).

Intensor Quake II Mod  [10:25 AM EDT]
The folks from Intensor, makers of those intense, subwoofer-powered sound chairs for gaming, have posted a Quake II modification to "enhance Quake 2 sound files for the maximum Intensor Experience." The file can be found here (on Intensor's site), and here's the read me. Got an Intensor? Turn up the volume and try a rocket jump or two... could be the next biggest thing since one-handed Tomb Raider.

Screenshots: Starsiege, Tanarus, and Wrath  [10:25 AM EDT]
There are two new Tanarus 2.0 screenshots showing off Sony's tank dealie (thanks DethMan). Also, there are some shots out of WRATH, an upcoming third-person OpenGL action/adventure from Future Primitive. Finally, Schnoz's Starsiege Universe sends word of the release of three new screenshots for Dynamix's Starsiege (not Tribes: I confused this myself, thanks Matt Sheridan for the heads-up) showing off some new looks, as well as only the second image showing off the fliers (the first shot). Here goes:

New QVoice  [10:25 AM EDT]
Beta 16 of QuakeVoice, the real-time voice communication mod for Quake II is out (thanks Erik "Blue's News was better without any non-FPS crap" Timmermans). Here's the lowdown on this project which sounds like it's starting to take shape:

This is a working version, handles reasonably well over modem's (needs work) tends to suck up CPU usage on servers when all clients talk at the same time. None of the "peer" options are working. For some reason, compression settings aren't being saved properly, look for a fix in b17.

Voodoo2 Control Panels  [10:25 AM EDT]
The Tid-Bits page over on 3 Fingers has an article up titled "Use that Groovy Creative Labs V2 Control Panel with Your RC1 Voodoo2 Drivers." with details how to get Creative's (and presumably other cards') proprietary control panel going with the reference drivers.

Legal Part One: Creative Sues Diamond  [10:25 AM EDT]
ZDNNews News Bursts is reporting that Creative Labs is suing Diamond (thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme). Here's the entirety of the short, but sour blurb:

Creative Labs Inc. filed suit against Diamond Multimedia Inc. accusing its rival graphics board maker of false advertising, unfair business practices, trade libel and defamation. Diamond executives declined comment, saying they had not seen the suit.

Legal Part Two: Intel Patent Violation?  [10:25 AM EDT]
Intel's Merced may violate patent is a ZDNN article that details a possible conflict with Intel's upcoming CPU and a patent held by S3 ("Neither company has filed a law suit on the matter so far"). Thanks Maverick.

BAWLS at the FRAG2  [10:25 AM EDT]
Word out of The FRAG 2 high command is that BAWLS, the high-caffeine guarana beverage (and the official soft drink of the Blue Tower) will be a sponsor of the event, and several cases of the soda, as well as BAWLS t-shirts, will be given away (they'd better save me a shirt -- they're not even acknowledging that they're edging into my territory here).

Tomb Raider Previews  [10:25 AM EDT]
PC.IGN.COM's Tomb Raider 3 preview is up looking at Lara, I mean the game (or is that the game?). Thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme. Also, GameSpot's Preview of Tomb Raider 3 is likewise now online. Thanks Frans at 3D Action Gamers.

CPU Chart  [10:25 AM EDT]
The CC Future CPU Brief has been updated with the ton of info recently revealed about a range of upcoming processors, to provide a simple resource to tell you what CPU with what features will be released when for how much. Also, thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme for word that Dimension 128 has a techie article up examining Intel's recent Katmai announcements.

Out of the Blue  [10:25 AM EDT]
Go figure: www.newsblues.com, or News Blues - A Forum For TV Newsroom Whiners (thanks both Drew 'VisA' Vogel and Ro'a-kana). On that subject, I finally got contacted in a manner I expected long before it occurred, a disappointed organization looking to register the bluesnews.com domain for a site about blues music. As you can imagine, they were perplexed why a site about games chose this name (not that they're the only ones perplexed at that choice).

Quote of the day: "I now believe it is quite possible to condition yourself to a high stress/low sleep lifestyle. I also believe that sometime in the near future I'm going to keel over because of said lifestyle. Gotta love crunch time. :)"
    -- Scott "Pookie Smoothbone" Schlegel (Monolith Productions)

Thursday, October 15, 1998

MacQuakeWorld 2.3 Beta 1  [9:54 PM EDT]
MacQuakeWorld 2.3 Beta 1 is out on Westlake Interactive's website. "This version includes several Mac fixes as well as compatibility with the newest PC version." Thanks Jvox's Boomstick.

Trespasser Release Date  [9:54 PM EDT]
According to our interview with our guests from Dreamworks Interactive on Shooters tonight, Trespasser can be expected on shelves the first week in November. Scoops on Shooters! How cool. Thanks to the Dreamworkers for being great guests.

Matrox Unified BIOS  [9:54 PM EDT]
The Matrox Graphics BIOS page has a new version 3.44 unified BIOS available. Thanks eVaSIVE. The link on the page is broken, but the file is actually there, here's a working link to the file on Matrox's site.

Trespasser Shooters  [6:53 PM EDT]
Tonight on Shooters we will converse with one or two of the folks from DreamWorks Interactive about their recently completed Dinosaur shooter dealie Trespasser. Is it really done? Well, they have time to talk to us, don't they? The frivolity all kicks off live at 8:00 PM Eastern time, RealPlayer or FakeRealPlayer required.

id's Quake II Internet Pack No. 1: Extremities  [6:26 PM EDT]
id Software's Director of Business Development, Anna Kang, sends along word on the Quake II project that was hinted about recently. It turns out to be a compilation of community created mods packaged as a retail product called Quake II Internet Pack No. 1: Extremities. Here's the announcement:

As you all know, the id development team is hard at work on Quake III Arena. We do, however, come up for air and some fun in between all the work. This is where the idea of "Quake II Internet Pack No. 1: Extremities" originated. Many of us at id have enjoyed the great mods created by the community and we recognize the hard work and high production quality that goes into creating them. This convinced us to bundle some of the best Quake II Internet mods as a retail product. Yep, retail. Extremities will make these mods available to fans who might otherwise not be aware of these great works. This is a great way we at id can recognize some of the great work that's being done out there in the community.

As a bonus, we’ve created a special Quake III Arena poster which will be available in stores through the purchase of Extremities. The posters are VERY cool.

I will update you with more information about which mods will be included as well as when you can expect to see Extremities on the retail shelves once these details are finalized.

Daikatana Interview Correction  [4:02 PM EDT]
Next-Generation Online Daikatana - Up Close And Personal is not an interview with ION Storm's Rob Legg, as they (and therefore I) originally posted, but rather an interview with John Romero.

Catch the Chicken  [4:02 PM EDT]
Version 2.0 of the Catch the Chicken mod for Quake II is now available. Thanks PFunk and slothdog. New to version 2 is the addition of a Teamplay mode, Map cycling, "the droppable option now allows you to throw the chicken grenade style" (yeah, baby!), and more.

Uprising 2 Movie  [3:29 PM EDT]
Is it a floor wax, or a desert topping? Is it action, or is it strategy? It's both: Uprising 2 is the upcoming sequel to the original hybrid action/strategy tank game from Cyclone Studios. Games.Net has a Uprising 2 movie for download in AVI format described simply as a sneak preview. Thanks Billy "Uprising" Wilson at Voodoo Extreme. Here's a local copy (9.6 MB) on GamesNET FTP.

Duke Forever Feature, Chris Hargrove Interview  [3:00 PM EDT]
The Duke Nukem Forever feature is up on GameSpot UK as part of their Duke Week, a week-long celebration of Dukiness, which, other than today's article on the upcoming fourth installment in the PC end of this series, mostly focuses on Time to Kill, the third-person PlayStation Duke adventure. Also, GPMega's Interview With Chris Hargrove is a brief chat with this 3DRealms programmer.

Processor Mania  [2:42 PM EDT]
AMD Moves onto the Overtaking Lane (which is apparently a good thing) is a new article up on Tom's Hardware Guide that looks at the announcements from AMD about their next-generation CPU, and why Tom thinks "Intel should start sweating." Thanks Goyle. Also, while processing information about processors, News.Com (part Intel-owned) has an article up titled Merced moves to the fore (thanks Eric "Necromancer" Jensen) that has a link to Intel details Merced, their newest CPU article giving the latest on Intel's latest, as well as links to over a half-dozen of their previous articles analyzing the state of the silicon art.

S3 Reference Drivers  [2:26 PM EDT]
The Hercules S3 Reference Drivers page has version 6.11.01 reference drivers (dated October 14) for Savage3D-based cards that don't seem to be on S3's site yet. Thanks Onyx of ODN.

Doom Legacy TCP/IP Beta  [2:20 PM EDT]
The Doom Legacy Homepage has the beta release of the TCP/IP version of Doom Legacy, one of the projects updating the recently released source code for id's classic Doom. Two notes: This beta will not work with Winsock version 2.0 (future versions will not suffer this limitation), and users of this release are asked to consider themselves beta testers and submit bug reports. Thanks Trematode.

3D Now! 3.19 Drivers  [1:49 PM EDT]
The AMD Optimized Drivers for Quake II page has updated K6-2 optimized drivers for Quake II 3.19. Thanks Chris O'Neal.

KHG Available Too  [1:49 PM EDT]
On the heels of the Shogo sighting reported earlier (story), I've also received a couple of reports of in-store sightings of MicroProse's Unreal-engine Klingon Honor Guard. Thanks TalonClaw and James Gordon.

Delta Force Demo  [1:49 PM EDT]
On the announcement of the release of NovaLogic's Delta Force (story), I finally managed to upload a copy of the Updated Delta Force Playable Demo (14.0 MB) released recently (story). Here's why they posted an updated demo:

The larger 18 megabyte Delta Force interactive demo found on recent magazine CDs was a preview demo only. The Delta Force code was nearly 2 months old, so you'll find quite an improvement over that demo.

Shogo In Stores  [11:25 AM EDT]
Your mileage may vary, but I have received word of the first Shogo sighting I've heard of, as a Software etc. in NYC is apparently filling advance orders.

Delta Force Released  [11:25 AM EDT]
Delta Force Action Game Brings the Terror of Man-to-Man Warfare to the PC is the announcement of the release of Delta Force, a first/third person action game from NovaLogicl (thanks Lorien at Gamer's Alliance). Here's a hunk:

In Delta Force, players can tackle more than 40 adrenaline-pumping missions which are based on those of the real U.S. Army Delta Force. NovaLogic's first offering in the action shooter category also lets players pit their skills against more than 30 human opponents in NovaWorld, the company's large-scale, online game service. Delta Force allows players to conduct their missions in extremely detailed terrain with the ability to see and shoot an enemy miles away in every direction, unlike most other action games which usually provide visibility of only a few hundred feet. Players will be able to navigate through miles of diverse regions including snowy mountain ranges, barren deserts, and tropical forests with lakes and rivers.
    The launch of Delta Force debuts the company's Voxel Space 3 graphics terrain with 32-bit true color support (65 million colors) and 800 x 600 resolution (with Pentium II). Voxel Space 3, the next generation of NovaLogic's patented 3-D graphics-rendering technology, makes it possible for players to take advantage of their environment when plotting their tactics -- something which is not possible with an ordinary polygon engine.
    For example, players can camouflage themselves in the grass while stealthily crawling up on the enemy, or they can strategically position themselves in between trees and cliffs to take aim with a sniper rifle. Delta Force players can utilize binoculars or sniper scopes to scan the horizon for enemies.

Heretic II Preview  [11:25 AM EDT]
OGR previews Heretic II taking a look at Raven's upcoming third-person action title that's a sequel to one or more of the previous Heretic/Hexen games.

Quakeadelica  [11:25 AM EDT]
The UK Quakeadelica rave/deathmatch (or something like that) to determine a challenger for Thresh kicks off this evening. The PlanetQuake Quakeadelica Coverage will bring the festivities to you through the magic of the Internet.

The Final Showdown with ParadoX  [6:39 AM EDT]
Tom "ParadoX" Mustaine's first article is up on False Dot Com giving the lowdown on the showdown we all love/hate the most, the encounter with a game's final "boss."

Shogo Chat Log  [6:39 AM EDT]
There's an edited log of last night's AVault Shogo chat session with Monolith's John Jack, Craig Hubbard, and Brian Goble on PlanetShogo.

Shogo Patch Update  [6:39 AM EDT]
Speaking of Shogo: Mobile Armor Division, Monolith's Kevin Stephens updated his .plan with word on his work on the Shogo patch, running down a list of fixes to the AI and more.

Giants Shots  [6:39 AM EDT]
Voodoo Extreme has three new screenshots from PlanetMoon's upcoming Giants: Citizen Kabuto (no word on the Lawrence Taylor skin for the Giants).

Quake III Arena Editorial Du Jour  [6:39 AM EDT]
Today's Quake III Arena editorial is a piece called Quake III: Arena - How To Do It up on Unreal Nation giving id more unsolicited advice on what to do with their upcoming game.

Quake II Ground Zero Fix  [6:39 AM EDT]
Jim Molinets updated his .plan with some technical support for glitches with their mission pack that could clear up problems with user-created Quake II mods as well:

We are getting a lot of support mail concerning missing entities or entities that act unusual. Almost all of these have been caused by a misplaced .dll file in the root of your Quake2 directory. If you have a gamex86.dll in the root of your Quake2 directory and are having problems with the pack, delete that .dll. It shouldn't be there and all it is going to do is mess with running either of the packs, or most of the Mods out there.

On Messiah Multiplayer  [6:39 AM EDT]
A post on PVR-NET gives word from Shiny on customizing Messiah, as well as a bit on a multiplayer mode they call "Musical Bodies." Here's an excerpt:

[...]"I think it's essential for any game to have an outstanding single player game. Especially if there's any kind of a story happening. But, we understand the importance of making the game kick in multi-player mode as well. We've got some of the standard stuff along with a few tricks up our sleeves. My favorite multi-player mode is something I refer to as "Musical Bodies".

Imagine ten cherubs in a room with 30 bodies. Well, you can't go around killing everyone because you're effectively destroying your future armor and weapons, and eliminating hiding places! It get's great when there's one less innocent body than there are players. Suddenly, everyone's ganging up on one guy (shooting each other in the crossfire, usually) while the cherub on his own is trying to kick somebody out of a body! It's totally hilarious and nerve-wracking at the same time!"

K7 Article  [6:39 AM EDT]
Microprocessor Forum AMD lays out K7 competitor to Katmai is an EETimes article on AMD's next-gen processor (thanks Voodoo Extreme),

Newer Eraser Wizard  [6:39 AM EDT]
Revision 1 of the just-released version 2.28 of the Quick Start Eraser Bot Wizard for Quake II is now available, addressing a bug where this Eraser Bot front-end would crash if your executable wasn't named Quake2.exe.

Bind of the Week  [6:39 AM EDT]
The Bind (All Your Aliasing Needs) is getting geared up to celebrate a config of the week until they run out of configs (the week supply is fairly infinite, I'm told), so send in your Quake II configs for consideration, and it could be you up on the podium some day saying "You like me... you really like me!"

Out of the Blue  [6:39 AM EDT]
Today's .plan update from Raven's Bobby Duncanson offers some time-honored truths, like "If you try to fail, and succeed, which have you done?" Heavy, eh?

Wednesday, October 14, 1998

Giants MPG  [10:09 PM EDT]
Billy at Voodoo  Extreme sends along word that the Giants .mpg recently released by PlanetMoon has been unavailable more or less since release, but now there is a copy here, and another here of this (zipped) .MPG format movie on Interplay's FTP. The server is still being hammered (I had a two hour download and a 15 minute upload), so just for good measure, here's a local copy (11.6 MB) on GamesNET FTP. This movie shows off some wild stuff, including a twister, shades of Auntie Em.

Monster Fusion Drivers  [10:09 PM EDT]
Diamond released new drivers for their Voodoo Banshee-based Monster Fusion card on their FTP Site. Thanks 3DFiles.Com.

Wicked3D VSYNC Fix  [10:09 PM EDT]
The Roller Coaster has some files up to fix a problem with two Wicked3D Voodoo2 cards in SLI mode that prevents the disabling of VSYNC.

John Jack Interactive Interview  [7:30 PM EDT]
The next PC Gamer Online Interactive Interview will talk with Shogo Project Manager John Jack about life at Monolith, what's up with Shogo, and what's with the two first names. Actually, the questions asked will be decided by reader input, hence the interactive thingie, so send suggestions for questions to askpcg@pcgamer.com

KHG, SS2 Sites  [7:30 PM EDT]
The new and improved Klingon Honor Guard homepage is up offering screenshots, video, and shouting Klingons in celebration of Microprose's upcoming Unreal-engine Star Trek game. Thanks Frans at 3D Action Gamers. Also, Irrational Games' System Shock 2 page is now open offering the first designer's diary for this upcoming sequel from I.G. and Looking Glass.

Deus Ex Interview  [7:30 PM EDT]
Gamer's Digest interviews Chris Norden talking to the Lead Programmer of ION Storm's upcoming Unreal-engine RPG, Deus Ex.

Celeron Overclocking FAQ  [7:30 PM EDT]
CPU Central's Celeron Overclocking FAQ teaches you how to overclock the celery out of an Intel Celeron CPU.

3D Blaster Banshee Drivers  [7:30 PM EDT]
The Creative Labs FTP site has new Windows NT drivers for the Voodoo Banshee based 3D Blaster Banshee. Thanks BetaNews.

Savage3D Unreal  [4:32 PM EDT]
S3 Planet has what's described as an "early beta" of the Unreal MTL port. There are "minor display bugs," but it is said to work better than the hacked G200 D3D drivers. Thanks Randall Walker.

Stop the Presses: a Q3A Rant  [4:32 PM EDT]
The latest Games Domain Rant takes some shots at id, questioning the thinking behind the direction of Quake III Arena. Thanks Frans at 3D Action Gamers. This topic is a popular subject lately for opinion pieces about the world of first-person shooters, along with the somewhat contradictory complaint that there is an upcoming glut of undifferentiated games in the genre.

Rainbow Six, Ground Zero Reviews  [4:32 PM EDT]
Two reviews up on Games Domain Review, a Rainbow Six review, and a Quake II Ground Zero review. Thanks again Frans at 3D Action Gamers.

Slave Zero Preview  [4:32 PM EDT]
PC Games previews Slave Zero looking ahead at this game that puts you in command of 60 foot tall "Bio-mechanical War Machines."

New StarFighter AGP Drivers  [4:32 PM EDT]
740 has posted new AGP Win95/98 drivers for the Intel740-based Real3D StarFighter, as well as new AGP WinNT drivers with Unreal support.

Newer Glide Switcher  [4:32 PM EDT]
Billy at VE sends word of an updated version of Creative Labs' GlideSwitcher utility for machines with Banshee and Voodoo Graphic or Voodoo2 cards simultaneously.

Beta Mac Unreal Patch  [10:30 AM EDT]
A public beta of a version 1.01 patch for Mac Unreal is up on the Westlake Interactive website, fixing the problems playing on version 2.17 PC servers, fixing the "beheading bug in 3Dfx," ending the server pauses in Appletalk games, the "O" key can now be remapped, support for RAVE detection on 2 monitors, and better support for cable modems.

SPECTRA 2500 Review  [10:30 AM EDT]
Tweak3D's SPECTRA 2500 review takes the TweakMonkey approach and spends a good part of the review discussing overclocking possibilities on Canopus' TNT board, with comparisons to the VELOCITY 4400.

WickedVision Review  [10:30 AM EDT]
HARDgame reviews the Wicked 3D WickedVision. Also, Sharky Extreme's inside look at Metabyte takes a look behind the scenes at Metabyte, where these wicked boards originate.

Where in the Quake Level is Carmen Sandiego?  [10:30 AM EDT]
NewMedia Brain Candy September 1998 (thanks Paul "JTR" Steffens) offers a topdown view of a homemade Quake level, where the object is to guess where in the level certain points of view are found.

John Carmack Techno Update  [5:50 AM EDT]
John Carmack made one of those technical .plan  updates (at least it left me in the dust, but it's been noted before, I'm a bit of a monkey), talking about programming issues he's faced relating to time, and um, my head hurts.

George Broussard on Prey  [5:50 AM EDT]
Broussard Responds to Prey Questions is an AVault Q&A with 3D Realms' president on the state of Prey after yesterday's announcement that William Scarboro and Paul Schuytema are no longer with the project.

Jason Hall Interview  [5:50 AM EDT]
Monolithic interviews Jason Hall, CEO of their namesake company who runs the gauntlet of questions like "Describe some of the Recent games release and almost gold and what they are about?"

Blood2 Screenshots  [5:50 AM EDT]
Speaking of Monolith, there are two more new Blood2 screenshots up on LithTimes.

Heretic II Previews  [5:50 AM EDT]
Something Wicked This Way Comes isn't just an oogy car commercial, it's an interview with two of the Heretic II animators up on the SoftImage site that offers a bunch of new screenshots. Also, here's Next Generation Online's Heretic II preview (thanks Raven Archives).

Heretic II at the FRAG2  [5:50 AM EDT]
Speaking of H2, word out of FRAG2 high command is that Raven Software will be at the event showing off the latest builds of Heretic II to the eager throngs(TM). Last year's Hexen II showing at QuakeCon resulted in an unofficial public beta test immediately thereafter, so one imagines snipers will be guarding these machines.

More Unreal Tech  [5:50 AM EDT]
Tim  Sweeney's Unreal Technology page has an update on the state of his multiplayer cheating investigations (with a quote that could be broadened out to multiplier cheats in general: "In the meantime, if you too have figured out how to cheat in Unreal, pat yourself on the back, you outsmarted me! But also, please resist the temptation to cheat on the public deathmatch servers...it spoils the fun."). The update also mentions the other non-GameSpy public Unreal Master Server (that's a mouthful) besides the one mentioned yesterday. The OGN master is at master.ogn.org:27500, and Server lists can be retrieved here, and a page describing how to link to it can be found here.

Randy Pitchford Interview  [5:50 AM EDT]
AVault's interview with Randy Pitchford talks to this Rebel Boat Rocker designer about Prax War and staying ahead of the 3D curve.

Harry Teasley Interview  [5:50 AM EDT]
An interview with Harry Teasley on Wavelength Levels talks to this Valve designer about Half-Life. Thanks Voodoo Extreme.

Shogo Review  [5:50 AM EDT]
GameSpot's Shogo Mobile Armor Division review.

Thief Preview  [5:50 AM EDT]
GameCenter's Sneak Peek at Thief The Dark Project. Thanks CiDcO here from Stormtroopers.com.

Battle of the Sexes Maps  [5:50 AM EDT]
There are five new maps for the Battle of the Sexes mod up on Spinoza's Quake 2 Mods Page as they've posted the BotS map pack #10.

Quake II Battleground  [5:50 AM EDT]
Version 1.20 of Quake II Battleground is out. The latest version of this competition mod for Quake II offers "ClanRing-style ghosts, auto-disabling of warmup mode when more than half of the players are ready, full admin control over which items are allowed in the game, team captains, a revamped scoreboard, optional temporary respawn protection, crude flood protection, and increased command compatibility with other popular teamplay mods. A number of minor bugs were also fixed." Word is that this is the mod that will be used to govern the matches at the FRAG2.

QWAdmin  [5:50 AM EDT]
On the competition mod front, the "final" version 1.0 of Dr.Drain's QWAdmin is out offering a ton of new features, enhancements, and bug fixes to this QuakeWorld competition server administration tool.

Omen 2  [5:50 AM EDT]
Version 1.1 of the Omen2 mod for Quake is up on the Omen and Omen II page offering two classes and 14 new weapons. From the team that brought you Codered, Omen, Jailbreak, Horrorshow, QPong, "and many others."

Eraser Wizard  [5:50 AM EDT]
Version 2.28 of the Quick Start Eraser Bot Wizard for Quake II is now available.

GBPaker  [5:50 AM EDT]
GBPaker is a program to allow mod authors to distribute significantly smaller patches to update their mods than in the past by updating selected files within a pak file, rather than forcing the user to download a whole new pak. The program is shareware (for the mod authors, free for end users), and apparently works equally well with Quake and Quake II

Forsaken Levels  [5:50 AM EDT]
The Gaming Krib has released two more single player Forsaken levels converted for multiplayer play by Ray "I" from Kali, a conversion of Biodome called NightShade (headlights required), and a conversion of the other half of the Asteroid base called Campers Haven.

This Old Level  [5:50 AM EDT]
This Old Level is Archy Vial's level editing column on Hoc Opus (AKA Wedge and Choryoth's page dangit), which they point out gets edited more than their page does (but hey, this ain't the Quake Command days...). The new installment from Archy is called Levels of Undoing. Thanks Jason Spears.

FreeSpace Design Resources  [5:50 AM EDT]
Speaking of editing, FreeSpace Design Resources will help you on your Descent into Great War editing.

KICK Engine Demo  [5:50 AM EDT]
The KICK game engine site is now up, offering a demo of this new technology. Here's the word from the Rockette scientists over there:

The Kick Engine site is now up and running (in the last few minutes) at http://www.kickengine.co.uk. A demo is now available for download. The demo shows some features of the what the engine can do including phong shading, specular, detail mapping, underwater caustics, proper shadows and volumetric fog all calculated in real time every frame. Also included is full 24/32 bit texture support and is a good test for image quality on 3d cards. Anyone interested in games technology should take a look as this is the first engine in the world to to all this in real time. The demo requires a P266, OpenGL 8MB graphic card, 32MB and 224MB of Virtual Memory. Take a look. Also note that a joystick is required at the moment. A version which supports mouse and keyboard will be posted later this week.

Trespasser Site  [5:50 AM EDT]
The official Trespasser site is up offering a bunch of downloads, including sound files, AVI's, and even some game music. Thanks Peddler.

On VSYNC  [5:50 AM EDT]
It's understood that disabling VSYNC will improve framerates when running benchmarks, but what's the tradeoff? What does Enable/Disable VSYNC mean is a Planet RIVA article written by Nate Robins of Iguana Entertainment (Turok2) that attempts to answer that question.

AMD K7, Cyrix Jalapeno CPU Designs  [5:50 AM EDT]
AMD unveils K7 chip design reports News.Com (Thanks Redwood), and Microprocessor Forum K7 Technology Presentation (thanks Jeff at AMD Zone). Also, Cyrix Unveils Jalapeno Core Architecture (thanks Voodoo Extreme).

Voxel Madness  [5:50 AM EDT]
This CPU Madness article on voxel engines picks up where their previous article on pixels left off, saying it's like their "pixel article on crack," though of course 'on crack' is a technical term, not to be bandied about lightly.

Funny Papers  [5:50 AM EDT]
User Friendly for October 14. Thanks Ant.

New MSIE Security Flaw  [5:50 AM EDT]
Web developer reports bug in Microsoft browser reports a new security flaw that may be present in MSIE that may allow access to your files (I'm having Deja Vu). Thanks Lorien at Gamer's Alliance.

Out of the Blue  [5:50 AM EDT]
Wack .plan of the day: Bobby Duncanson on the Theology of Toys. Yesterday's quote was indeed Mr. Hand, as with any good Fast Times...  quote, you should "Learn it, know it, live it."

Tuesday, October 13, 1998

Paul S and William S Gone from Prey Team  [5:39 PM EDT]
I heard a rumor that Paul Schuytema, Prey project leader, left 3D Realms, and I contacted George Broussard for a response. He's since updated his .plan with a similar statement as his reply to me confirming that Paul was let go, as well as word that William Scarboro, lead programmer on Prey, has left by mutual decision. Here's George's reply to my mail:

Paul is no longer with us or Prey. We felt a change was needed on the project, and we'll leave it at that. People come and go in this industry all the time and games still get done. Prey's release date is, as always, "when it's done".

And here's his .plan update:

In an effort to appease all the press that are contacting us, I have a brief statement. We will not go into details as they are nobody's business but our's and the parties involved.

Paul Schuytema is no longer with us on the Prey project. We felt a change was needed on the game.

William Scarboro has left by mutual decision.

The partings were amicable and we wish them both well in future endeavors.

People come and go in this industry all the time. Prey's release date is, as always, "when it's done".

This is, of course, the second time prominant members of the Prey team have left for one reason or the other, as Jim Dosé, Mark Dochtermann, and Tom Hall departed in August 1996.

New Kali  [5:39 PM EDT]
Version 1.57 of Kali is now available on the Kali FTP Site. The new version adds support for Starcraft 1.03, Unreal 2.17, Enemy Infestation demo, Populous demo, Dominant Species Demo, and adds a TCP player search toolbar button and menu item. Here's a local copy of Kali 95 1.57 (2.6 MB) on GamesNET FTP.

Seeking Unreal Cheats  [5:39 PM EDT]
Tim Sweeney updated his Unreal Technology page with a request for information that will help ferret out forms of multiplayer cheating he's heard of, but cannot pinpoint the cause. Thanks Redwood. The update is actually huge, also covering some UnrealScript notes, a bit on TCP/IP port addresses, on how frequently patches should be released, fonts, and the new public Master Server.

Max Payne Accelerators, News Blackout  [11:09 AM EDT]
Remedy/3D Realms' Petri Järvilehto updated his .plan with a clarification of what is required in the way of accelerator for Max Payne, as well as news on a moratorium on interviews and the like for a while:

Just to clear up some confusion. In a recent article it was mentioned that Max Payne requires a 3D accelerator, a direct quote was: "with a 3dfx compatible card". I've been getting quite many questions on this regard, and to set the thing straight, MAX-FX is running now on DirectX6.0 and we support pretty much all DX6.0 compatible 3d cards. To run Max Payne properly you'll need a card that is at least as powerful as 3DFX generation 1 card, and if you have a faster accelerator, you'll end up getting more visual detail.

And some miscellaneous notes:

1) We're not doing any more interviews for the time being. Talking with people is certainly good fun and all, but it's also pretty easy to get distracted with all the press etc. We're now going to close all the doors, turn off the lights, crank up the volume and do some heavy duty game developing for the next 4-5 months... We'll tell more about the game when we're closer to the release, ok? :-)

2) We're very close to getting the new mapper to join us shortly... it's been taking longer than expected to get all the practical matters solved out (work permits, place to live etc.), but Marty is going to fly from Australia in a week or two.

3) Lately we've been doing huge planning sessions, nailing down the final content for the game as well as planning out the implementation of that content. It's been a pretty good (though exhausting) 3 weeks, and we're now confident that the vision we have on the gameplay is something that we can deliver.

Heretic II Scripting  [11:09 AM EDT]
A post on Hexenworld from Raven level designer Jeremy 'Terata' Statz, describes the type of customization that will be possible in Heretic II without touching the game .dlls.

On Game Publishing  [11:09 AM EDT]
Trials and Tribulations of the Underdog Developer in Publishing is an interview on Gamer's Alliance with an anonymous developer talking about the difficulties in getting noticed by publishers. Also, more good press for g.o.d., as they are featured in an article in The Dallas Morning News that also offers an Interview with Mike Wilson.

On 3Dfx MiniGL and Glide 3.0  [11:09 AM EDT]
There's a letter from Jack Mathews posted on Voodoo Extreme that gives the lowdown on why it's likely that there won't be a Glide 3.0 version of the OpenGL minidriver. It sounds   strips and fans support under Glide 3.0 won't net that much, and the main push there is on the Installable Client Driver at this point.

Blue Goes Loony (Is loony Blue?)  [3:40 AM EDT]
It is with great pride that I announce that loonygames is on board as part of the small, but obstinate Blue's News "network." Here's the release I just spammed onto some fellow webmasters:

LOONYGAMES TO JOIN BLUE'S NEWS "NETWORK"

Move considered to be "ideal for all involved"

NEW YORK, NY, October 13: Blue's News, offering "all the carnage that's fit to post" for more than a fifth of a decade, and loonygames, whose motto is "Everything you could ask for in a gaming site... except news," proudly announce that loonygames is the newest addition to the Blue's News family, a vast network growing at the glacial pace of about one site per year. But the focus is on quality over quantity, as the article based content at loonygames, makes a perfect compliment to Blue's News' award winning gaming coverage. Aside from more visible support on Blue's News, and perhaps the addition of some cheesy button dealie, the content of loonygames will remain unaffected by this move, as Blue is smart enough to know how stupid it would be to interfere with such a finely run site.

When interviewing himself for this release, Stephen "Blue" Heaslip, Editor-in-Chief, and Supreme Dictator for Life at Blue's News and cigar-smoking mogul publisher of Blue's News, JediKnight.Net, and now loonygames, asked himself for a perfunctory quote giving some good spin for this occasion, which inspired this reply: "loonygames is already considered one of the premiere magazine format sites on the Internet, and a personal favorite of mine. I'm proud of this association, and would say this a terrific partnership between sites that mesh really well to make a well-rounded resource for the serious gamer."

Jason "loonyboi" Bergman, Editor-in-Chief of loonygames, had this to say: "I dunno, I'm busy...make up a quote from me and I'm sure it will be fine."

Sin and Unreal Server Lists  [3:40 AM EDT]
Gameaholic dot Com has their Active Unreal Servers and their Active Sin Servers lists up and running. Server admins can add their servers to the lists using this page.

Tribes September Pics, IRC  [3:40 AM EDT]
There's a compilation of the September Pics o' the Day up on the Starsiege Tribes Players site. Thanks Schnoz's Starsiege Universe. Word is there's a Tribes online chat tomorrow evening at 5:00 PM PDT (8:00 PM EDT) held in #tribes on Undernet IRC.

Games Addictive?  [3:40 AM EDT]
Games An Addiction? is a GameCenter article that cites a new British study that indicates that gaming might be an addictive habit ("What are you people... on dope?").

More Quake III Editorializing  [3:40 AM EDT]
Critics Of Q3A Are Pulling The Wool Over Their Own Eyes is another article inspired by the recent Andrew Smith piece.

Quake III Icons, Wallpaper  [3:40 AM EDT]
Patrick 'Millennium' Curry sends  along a few desktop icons using the Quake III Arena logo (1 KB). Also, ^mortis^ sends along word of this Quake III Arena inspired wallpaper he did.

Shogo Review  [3:40 AM EDT]
3DGaming.Net's Shogo Mobile Armor Division Review is up, looking at the full game.

Anand Does Video  [3:40 AM EDT]
AnandTech's Video Accelerator Comparison is online, described as Eight different chipsets, 6 processors, 5 tests, 3 resolutions, 1 winner. Thanks Ophidian.

Banshee Contrast, FAQ  [3:40 AM EDT]
Tom Kerrigan's Web Site ha s a program up called TGamma, which can control the brightness and contrast under Quake II with a Voodoo  Banshee, though I've also received word that the 3Dfx OpenGL minidriver leaked the other day (story) also allows for in-game brightness adjustment. Speaking of the Banshee, the 3Dfx Banshee Game FAQ is the FAQ formerly known as the Voodoo2 game FAQ, helping answer questions about compatibility with specific games. Thanks Voodoo Extreme and Meanstryk (who had a problem solved by the FAQ).

VELOCITY 4400, Mystique G200 Reviews  [3:40 AM EDT]
STB Velocity 4400 at MeccaWorld (print review, no RealAudio here) and STB Velocity 4400 Review on Remote Review. Also, GameCenter reviews the Matrox Mystique G200.

3DNow! Benchmarks  [3:40 AM EDT]
The 3DNow! NOW Page has benchmarks using the new 3Dfx drivers on 3DNow! systems, but did not see much improvement in performance (Quake II scores went down).

CTF Challenge  [3:40 AM EDT]
Not just a CTF challenge, but Stinkbutt's CTF Challenge. The idea here is to play a Quake II CTF tourney on unfamiliar maps.

CTF Map Challenge  [3:40 AM EDT]
The winner of TerraFusion's CAP-PAK Quake II CTF Map competition, The Wrong Place by Claes 'Torakh' Redestad, has been declared, and the pak is now available for download.

The Locater  [3:40 AM EDT]
The Locater describes itself as the ultimate Quake/Quake II clan and tournament web list site.

TGN Beta  [3:40 AM EDT]
The Gaming Network is a new ICQ-type program for gamers seeking beta testers.

Out of the Blue  [3:40 AM EDT]
Just a reassurance that the Help Wanted/Offered ads are, in fact, in the works, and should go up sometime this week. ID Software? Hmm. I guess case sensitive is the key here (thanks Toby).

Monday, October 12, 1998        Happy Thanksgiving, Eh?   (Canada)

Local V2 DX6 Drivers  [8:01 PM EDT]
Here's a local copy (2.5 MB) of the Voodoo2 DirectX 6 drivers from earlier (story).

Heretic II Movie  [6:08 PM EDT]
Activision's Heretic II page has a new movie clip for download showing off gameplay from this upcoming third-person action game in AVI format.

Voodoo2 DirectX 6.0 Drivers  [6:08 PM EDT]
The Voodoo2 SLI Drivers page has the new Voodoo2 drivers featuring DirectX 6.0 support, which promise greatly enhanced performance under SLI mode (story), though they work for single board setups as well. Thanks Randy.

QW ThunderVote  [6:08 PM EDT]
Version 2.0 of ThunderVote is now available, offering democratic map voting on TeamFortress, Rocket Arena (Clan Arena 1.3 and Final Arena 1.2) and CTF (Threewave 4.1, ThunderWalker 5.0 and Expert 1.31) servers. New features in version 2.0 include advanced voting rules defined by the admin, Anarchy Mode, enhanced map rotation and many bug fixes.

All Heretics Day  [3:41 PM EDT]
Phoebus sends along the announcement of the Heretic II demo release on Thursday, October 22:

Heretic II News: Gamers - prepare to renew your faith on All Heretics Day, Thursday, October 22! Activision, Inc. and Raven Software will launch the highly anticipated Heretic II demo. The launch will also include giveaways from Diamond and Mad Catz. The demo, which is comprised of two single player and two multiplayer levels, will debut simultaneously on Activision's Web site (www.activision.com) and on GameSpot's Spotlight (www.gamespot.com) at 6:00p.m. PDT.

Anachronox & Deus Ex  [3:41 PM EDT]
This GameCenter article previews ION Storm's upcoming RPG's, the Quake II-engine Anachronox, and the Unreal-engine Deus Ex.

Expect This  [3:41 PM EDT]
The second installment in onethumb's False Dot Com column, Digitally Challenged, is up, talking about expectations versus reality for Artificial Intelligence in games.

Six Way 2D/3D Shootout  [2:43 PM EDT]
The 6-way 2D3D video card shoot-out on Sharky Extreme puts cards based on the Voodoo2, Banshee, TNT, G200, and Savage3D chipsets through their paces to help weed through the 3D jungle (not to be confused with the 3D jungle in this story) to make an informed decision.

Processor Shootout  [2:43 PM EDT]
ZDNN stories on AMD versus Intel: Rivals to the end Intel and AMD step up their storied battle (thanks Jeff at AMD Zone), and Katmai could kill 3DNow analysts say.

Carmageddon 2 Movie  [2:43 PM EDT]
Drivin' and a killin' is the name of the game at Pedestrian Precinct where they send news of a Carmageddon 2 movie that's got them all excited. Here's the word:

Most of the movies released over the past month or so, have all come from the ECTS beta version, but this one is striaght from the final code. It's reasonably big (3.4Mb's) but is definately worth downloading. It's totally original, no screen shots or previous movies have revealed what this movie does."

More on IGDN  [1:45 PM EDT]
Mike Wilson updated his .plan with a reply to some of the comments in the Stepto.Com story on the IGDN conference (story), as Mike was unable to attend his scheduled panel.

loonygames  [1:45 PM EDT]
The new week means some new PR for the latest at loonygames. Here's the lowdown on issue eight, to be posted through the week:

Planet Iridium  [1:45 PM EDT]
3DFiles.Com has an updated playable demo of Planet Iridium, one of those space combat dealies, that offers free Internet play during the beta "through summer" (not too long by my calendar). Thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme.

3Dfx Voodoo2 Announcement  [10:56 AM EDT]
Here's the announcement that 3Dfx was hinting at: The 3Dfx Voodoo2 Accelerator Smashes All Previous 3D Performance Records - and Scores 40 Percent Faster than Its Nearest Competitor (thanks 3 Fingers for the link). Here's a hunk:

3Dfx Interactive(R) Inc. (Nasdaq: TDFX) today announced new high-performance DirectX(R) drivers for Voodoo2(TM) that shatter all previous 3D graphics performance records, scoring 665 on the GameGauge metric when running in SLI configuration. The new drivers, combined with the unique 3Dfx SLI configuration of Voodoo2, offer 40 percent faster performance than the closest competitive product and are specifically optimized for the multi-texturing capabilities and other new features of DirectX 6. The performance improvements offer up to a 50 percent performance increase for multi-texturing Direct3D(TM) games over the previous drivers.

Additionally, customers will see a dramatic reduction in board pricing as a result of significant drops in memory component costs over the last six months. The Voodoo2 SLI configuration is expected to sell for less than $300 (U.S.), while an 8MB, single-board Voodoo2 is expected to sell for less than $100 (U.S.). These new prices will be a key element of 3Dfx's latest marketing campaign known as the "Power of 2," which debuts today. As part of the promotion, Guillemot will offer a pair of 12 MB Voodoo2 cards for a special "Power of 2" pricing of $229 (U.S.).

Messiah, KHG, Daikatana, Trespasser Shots  [10:56 AM EDT]
More screenshots than you can shake your .jpg at, Trespasser Central continues with shots from the beta, 3DXTC has some Klingon Honor Guard (Unreal-engine) shots, Daikatana Cabana has some shots up (guess the game), and Billy at Voodoo Screenshots Extreme has some new Messiah shots.

Ground Zero Review  [10:56 AM EDT]
Gamer's Alliance reviews the Ground Zero Quake2 mission pack.

Shogo Multiplayer Review  [10:56 AM EDT]
LANparty.com reviews Shogo, the focusing on multiplayer in Monolith's imminent first-person shooter, though it seems to be based solely on LAN reactions like the other PlanetQuake Review, with apparently no Internet play testing at all (the word "Internet" does not appear in the review).

New Unreal Public Master Server  [10:56 AM EDT]
A new public Unreal Master Server is running at master.telefragged.com:27500. The servers running there can be found on this TeleFragged Unreal Servers list, and Unreal server admins are encouraged to add their servers to the list as well, instructions for doing so can be found on this page

Climb the Polls  [10:56 AM EDT]
Methos Quake has kicked out a second edition of their self-proclaimed Ultimate Quake Poll 2 (a lot of focus on players and classic Quake). Also, just for fun (at least I hope!!), the PQ Mailbag has a poll question up: "If (PQ) and the guys from TeleFragged, Blue, and Redwood got into a real life street brawl ... who would win?" What a prospect!

Quake III Logo-Rama  [10:56 AM EDT]
This directory (there's no page there) contains a bunch of different copies of the Quake III Arena logo in different color schemes. Thanks Brad.

Quake II Login  [10:56 AM EDT]
The Quake II Multiplayer Login Program is a freeware program that aspires to compete with GameSpy. An early version was uploaded without a required .DLL yesterday, but that's been corrected.

QHunter Forums  [10:56 AM EDT]
The QHunter page now offers Forums for support, bug reporting, and feature requests for this in-game server browser program.

GSLogMod Mail  [10:56 AM EDT]
A couple of mailing lists dedicated to the latest on GSLogMod, and standard logging of Quake II games are underway. Details are on the mailing lists page on the GSLogMod site.

Southeast Tourney  [10:56 AM EDT]
Atlanta, GA radio station 99X is holding an event called the 99X JVC Cyberfest that will have a Quake tournament, offering prizes. Thanks Thud.

CRbot Maker Switches to Droids  [10:56 AM EDT]
Word on the CRbot homepage is that this Quake II bot's future is in doubt, as the author, Mike Malakhov, has landed a job at LucasArts (congrats to him), though Mike holds out the possibility of trying his hand at a Quake III Arena bot when the time comes. Thanks Executioner.

Camera Shy  [10:56 AM EDT]
id's Paul Jaquays updated his .plan with an explanation of why he is not in the photos in the PC Gamer Quake III Arena article, hopefully heading off any "Paul is dead" rumors.

Out of the Blue  [10:56 AM EDT]
AN_clock.jpg (5311 bytes)Watchmen fans unite! Yesterday's quote is one I've used before, but my absolute favorite (I used to use it to describe DM in tiny Doom2 levels).

Image ganked from Watching the Detectives

Sunday, October 11, 1998

MailBag  [6:21 PM EDT]
In this week's MailBag, a bit on the Quake II FAQ (story), including a clarification from Sat, the FAQ's author. Also, reader responses to the Precise Mousing Surface mini-review (here), reactions to the Andrew Smith editorial, someone fed up waiting on Unreal multiplayer fixes, and of course, more FPS and caffeinated beverages.

Rocket Arena 2 Beta Test  [4:51 PM EDT]
The Rocket Arena page has word of a beta of the next version of the Rocket Arena 2 server code running at voodoo.stanford.edu (this skin pack is required). Thanks Str][ker at Pure Death Edmonton. I like the look of the list of enhancements/changes/fixes:

QSB & QSV  [4:51 PM EDT]
Version 1.8 of Quake 2 Scene Builder is now available, with support for Sin models, backgrounds, and textures among the newly added features in this program that turns game models into fashion models for creating scenes using Quake, Quake II, and Sin. Also now available is version 1.8 of Quake II Scene Viewer (QSV) for 3Dfx, which allows you to load QSB scenes, adjust the "camera angle," and shoot .jpg format screenshots.

More on Unreal Networking  [4:01 PM EDT]
Tim Sweeney's Unreal Technology page has an update (thanks Voodoo Extreme) on DirectX 6 & NT 5 ("instantaneous mouse updates," yum!), UnrealEd, and more on the ongoing efforts at improving the game's multiplayer performance (mentioned earlier in this story), culminating in this quote:

"Programming action-intensive network code is extremely challenging work, absolutely as hard as writing good 3D rendering code. The more time I invest in the network code, the more respect I gain for the id Software team (Carmack, Zoid, et al) who have defined gamers' expectation of Internet gameplay. There is a lot to be learned from studying QuakeWorld."

The Dallas IGDN Conference  [4:01 PM EDT]
Stepto.Com has posted a story on yesterday's Dallas IGDN Conference. It's too bad the conference didn't live up to the author's anticipation. I love this intro that discusses the possibilities:

"Would this be the conference where Gathering Of Developers (g.o.d.) made some great announcement to rally the troops? Would Romero provide more information on Daikatana's ship date or would he just sit there looking good? Would Paul Steed fly off the handle and go into some rant about someone else who was there at the conference? I mean seriously, with that many personalities and with everything that is going on in the gaming industry, this conference was shaping up to be a real blockbuster in terms of anticipation."

Blood2 Screenshot  [3:30 PM EDT]
A new not-quite-weekly weekly Blood 2: The Chosen screenshot is up on the Blood 2 The Chosen site (thanks Tha Blood Shack).

Quake II Female Base Skins  [3:05 PM EDT]
Rorshach's Journal has a set of 19 new base skins for the female Quake II marine. The only request that Rorshach makes is that modified versions of the base skin not be used in a project for profit. ("None of you understand, I'm not locked up in here with you. You're locked up in here with me.")

Drakan, Requiem Screenshots  [2:21 PM EDT]
Sharky Extreme has some Drakan screenshots showing off this upcoming game from Surreal's upcoming Dragon riding romp. Also there are four new screenshots of Requiem: Avenging Angel on Hell on Earth.

Quake/Quake II Competitions  [2:21 PM EDT]
Twisted into Form devoted to Quake & Quake II contests including three new Quake speedrun contests and four new Quake Reaper bot contests. Their "Quake Twister" competition '98 ends December 18, 1998 (prizes include registered Qoole 2.50, Quake II Mission Pack Ground Zero, and a copy of The Reap. Also there's a brand-new site called Riding the Rocket that looks to offer weekly Quake II competitions.

Unreal Update  [2:21 PM EDT]
Mark Rein made a messageboard post giving the latest on the state of Unreal, from the Unreal 2 scuttlebutt, to the team's relocation to Raleigh, NC (don't forget the mosquito repellant), to Tim's work on the next multiplayer patch from an isolated cabin on the dark side of the moon. Thanks PlanetUnreal. Here's the poop:

Relax folks. This whole thing will make sense sometime next year. Until then we unfortunately can't say anything.

In the mean time we're working hard on improvements to Unreal in many areas. Number 1 on the list is multiplayer. Tim has sequestered himself to concentrate exclusively on major multiplayer improvements with only minimumal disturbances. He informs me that he's making some excellent progress. We're pretty close to another patch but this next patch will NOT be compatible with previous versions so both clients and servers will need to update to this patch in order to play multiplayer games.

The Unreal team is in the process of relocating to Raleigh, NC. They're working hard on an exciting add-on for Unreal but we're yet ready to reveal any details about it just yet.

In the mean time, the MOD makers are going crazy doing AMAZING stuff! Just visit any of the Unreal fan sites and you'll be treated with a plethora of great levels and mods to download. Some of the server guys are joining in the fun by hosting some of the mods.We also plan to get into the act with some downloadable treats of our own once the multiplayer performance improvements are fully completed. Stay tuned!

VideoLogic Interview  [2:21 PM EDT]
There's a Videologic Interview on Game Asylum talking to them about their upcoming PVRSG chipset and the Dreamcast and stuff like that.

Solaris Urban DM  [2:21 PM EDT]
Solar Eclipse has the Solaris port of version 1.0 of Urban CTF. There is also a new Freeze Tag archive there, updated to version 1.75.

Memory Utility  [2:21 PM EDT]
MemTurbo is a utility that claims to defrag and recover system memory under Windows to "Give your system that 'Just Booted' feel with a single keystroke." I haven't checked it out yet myself, but Chris at BetaNews sent an email raving about it, so it sounds like it's worth a look.

De Plane!  [2:21 PM EDT]
Raven's Rick Johnson, who hasn't quite cracked the Cyber Elite top 50, was inspired by the list (story) to play Mr. Rourke, or Tattoo, or something, in his .plan file.

(Final?) Quake II FAQ  [6:05 AM EDT]
Version 1.8 of The Unofficial Quake II FAQ is up to answer all your questions about Quake II. Unfortunately Sat, the maintainer, seems a bit embittered about the whole FAQing experience, saying he's not going to "waste" any more time adding more text (though he will add things people send him), citing a lack of support or acknowledgment from id. He also says he does not want to hand the work he's done over to another maintainer.

Trespasser Shots  [6:05 AM EDT]
Some screenshots from the beta version of Trespasser are up on Trespasser Central. Word is a disc is in EA's hands for approval to go off to manufacturing.

John Romero Cyber-Elite  [6:05 AM EDT]
The 1998 edition of Time Digital's Cyber Elite has John Romero at #36 (up from #40 last year) in a list that mostly includes business types, with Bill Gates (considered #2 by many) at #1. Thanks PlanetSqueegee.

PainKeep Map Pack  [6:05 AM EDT]
Magische Infos has their third pack of maps recompiled for PainKeep. MagixX's Mappak 3 contains seven level for small four to eight player matches.

Q-Start  [6:05 AM EDT]
Version 1.92 of Q-Start, the shareware Quake front-end, is now available, fixing a solitary bug, and adding a display of the actual command line and a link between mods and their individual cfg files.

Quake II BattleGround Tutorial  [6:05 AM EDT]
French Frag Factory's Tutorial on Quake II Battleground gives a primer on Quake II Battleground, a server-only teamplay mod designed to allow for the painless setup of clan matches.

TNT Overclocking Without Overcooking  [6:05 AM EDT]
Cooling the TNT is a Tweak3D article describing various cooling options for TNT based accelerators, offering benchmarks showing the differences at various speeds for all you speed freaks out there.

PowerStrip  [6:05 AM EDT]
Speaking of overclocking your video card, word from Billy at VE is that version 2.29.1 of PowerStrip is up on the Entech page, also offering the ability to switch between multiple versions of Glide on the same machine (I can't reach the site as I write this).

Sound Off  [6:05 AM EDT]
Planet Hardware compares speakers, seeing how six different new speakers/subwoofer sets stack up.

Out of the Blue  [6:05 AM EDT]
Mark Szabo took a poke around after my ramblings about the move to this domain and dug up the original Quake Rag, unfortunately blue's 3D House of 3D Carnage, and blue's Doom page were pulled down in some urban renewal some time back.

Saturday, October 10, 1998

Barrage Demo  [9:06 PM EDT]
There's a new playable demo of Mango Grits' flying shooter Barrage up on Sharky Extreme. The demo requires Direct3D or Glide.

On Benchmarks  [9:06 PM EDT]
There is an article on Welcome to Anand's Hardware Tech Page about benchmarks and their limitations, explaining why certain benchmarks confusingly level off the way they do. Thanks japanman. The technical article attempts to help understand "which benchmark results mean what, since benchmarks can be very misinforming if not interpreted correctly."

FvF Quest, CTF  [9:06 PM EDT]
The FvF QW Headquarters has the release of QuakeWorld Future versus Fantasy 4.40, AKA FvF Quest, a server only update that allows for co-op mode. There is also word there of the occasional testing of FvF CTF.

Levelord Chips in Prize in Zee FRAG 2 Sin DM  [9:06 PM EDT]
The Cyberathlete Organization has announced a Sin DM at the FRAG 2, and in addition to the Intensor chair prizes, the Levelord is chipping in an autographed copy of the PC Zone magazine featured in the Behind Zee Bookcase level in the demo as well.

Giants Interview, Screenshots  [9:06 PM EDT]
Game-Interviews.com interviews Nick Bruty, President Co Art/Design Director and Tim Williams, Creative Director of Planet Moon Studios about their upcoming Giants: Citizen Kabuto, offering three screenshots as well. For more on this game you can check in with the recently relocated Citizen. Skarstedt.

GibStats  [9:06 PM EDT]
Version 2.3c of GibStats is out fixing the skill display bug and some HTML bugs.

Creative Petition Update  [9:06 PM EDT]
Zanshin, who has been on Creative's case about NT SBLive! support will be pleased to know that The Weslovian Gazette Creative Petition has added some language to address what they feel are shortcomings in the NT drivers as well.

Snip  [9:06 PM EDT]
Lost all phone service (voice, ISDN) today when the line to my building was snipped by a Junior Bell Atlantic technician (who's apparently in a bit of trouble right now). I have to admit that after ragging on them (NYNEX at the time) when I had my ISDN installed in February 1997, I've had 20 months of service without a line-related interruption (until today), so I have to give them credit where credit's due. Also, mad props to my neighbor Ted who threatened them with bodily harm until they shaved 24 hours off the estimate of when it would be back in service. You go Ted!

Shogo Update - Point Release  [9:52 AM EDT]
Monolith CEO Jason Hall made a huge .plan update outlining a few things about Shogo: Mobile Armor Division: Here's my best Reader's Digest version: 1) Due to the demand generated by the demo, there is a good likelihood that the initial run of the game will sell out immediately (he suggests pre-ordering). 2) There are plans to deal with concerns about Internet play with a "Shogo Multiplayer Point Release (SMPR) which is designed to address most of the various lag issues associated with internet multiplay." Jason is so bold as to give a date for the point release as November 15, as well as offering an explanation of why the game is shipping with multiplayer glitches (Monolith Programmer Mike Dussault also updated his .plan with some detail about the fixes going into Internet play). 3) Jason also mentions the previously mentioned AI bugs that are being addressed, and caps off with some enthusiasm for Blood2.

10 Questions for Paradox  [9:52 AM EDT]
The latest victim of False Dot Com's 10 Questions is Ritual designer Tom "ParadoX" Mustaine, a man who would walk on hot coals to impress the ladies (says so right in the interview).

It's A Jungle Out There - Bungle with the 'lord  [9:52 AM EDT]
Evolution of a Jungle is an article on PC Games by the Levelord detailing his work designing a jungle level for Sin. If only we could re-populate the rainforest with polygon trees. Also, the Snipe's new column over there discusses the disrespect he sees Sin (and other shooters) getting in light of Half-Life mania. One thing Snipe, if you missed the announcement, asking anyone involved in the project would have learned ya that the console and your key binding options are alive and well in the full version of Half-Life.

Max Payne Preview  [9:52 AM EDT]
GameCenter's sneak peek at Max Payne is online, offering a look at Remedy's upcoming gritty third-person shooter. Thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme.

Quake II Server Setup Guide  [9:52 AM EDT]
An update to the Quake II Server Setup Guide adds instructions on setting up a server running the Rogue mission pack, Ground Zero. If you still have problems with your server after reading the guide, The Fresh Forums may provide some answers.

New QuArK  [9:52 AM EDT]
The Official Quake Army Knife Homepage has version 5.0.c4 of the QuArK all-purpose Quake-engine level editing program. The updated release offers many new features, including a plug-in system to create add-on modules for the program.

MacQuakeWorld Update  [9:52 AM EDT]
According to the update on the Westlake Interactive page, QuakeWorld 2.3 for the Macintosh is ready to roll out the door pending approval from id Software. Thanks DarkViper. There's also word there that Tomb Raider II for the Mac has gone gold (the Mac can be like a time machine for gamers).

Starcraft 1.03  [9:52 AM EDT]
A Starcraft Patch 1.03 Now Available. Battle.net should automatically update those who log in, or the patch can be found here on Blizzard's FTP. Thanks DoomGuard.

Diablo II FAQ  [9:52 AM EDT]
Speaking of Blizzard, the Diablo II Frequently Asked Questions have been updated with more Q&A from this upcoming sequel. Thanks Lorien at Gamers Alliance.

Windows Glide Switcher  [9:52 AM EDT]
Creative Labs Products Graphics 3D Blaster Banshee page has a release candidate of a Windows version of their Glide Switcher, a program that allows two versions of Glide (3Dfx's 3D API) to peacefully co-exist on a machine with both a Voodoo Banshee and a Voodoo or Voodoo2 simultaneously installed. Thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme.

3D Radio  [9:52 AM EDT]
Jim Anderson at Canopus dropped a line to mention that he will be representing his company on an Internet radio dealie called Computer America along with reps of 3Dfx and ATI to discuss the state of the highly-competitive PC graphics industry. The show airs tomorrow (Sunday) between 3:00 and 6:00 PM Eastern time.

3M Precise Mousing Surface Mini-Review  [9:52 AM EDT]
I am playing around with the updated version of one of the few products that I can endorse without the slightest hesitation (or compensation for that matter), the 3M Precise Mousing Surface. I think I can lay claim to being one of the first to spill the beans about this little wonder some time ago, and I've seen others mention it since, but if you're not familiar with the PMS, it's a terribly thin mousepad with tiny fingerprint-like ridges that help maintain traction on your mouseball. The increased precision (hence the name) this provides can actually help increase your frag count (a bit), and I can easily call this the best mousepad I've ever used. 3M has addressed complaints that the pad was too small by increasing its area a bit, while addressing the other major complaint as well by lowering the suggested price (it was original close to $20). About the only bad thing you can say about them is that they are fugly: They were originally a mainstream product, and though 3M now realizes they appeal to gamers, the designs on these things look like Formica countertops. A basic black would have been so nice. Anyway, a mouse pad is not easy to get enthusiastic about, which makes this one all the more remarkable. Highly recommended.

Out of the Blue  [9:52 AM EDT]
Another anniversary: Today is the fourth anniversary of Doomsday. That's right, on this day in 1994, Doom II: Hell on Earth, hit retail shelves (thanks Lori). Oooh, the delight that ensued from the Snow Crash reference yesterday. Here's the Image of the Day, the latest from Dhabih "Doc Holiday" Eng, an image inspired by Metal Gear Solid (though it could also be titled Ninja Attacks the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man). Thanks Jonathan Ruff.

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