A high resolution version of the DOOM 3 trailer from E3 has been released, and
is now available on FilePlanet
(registration required). The 162 MB movie shows off gameplay from id's upcoming shooter remake. The
download is mirrored on 3D
More bad news at Black Isle Studios, where lead designer J.E. Sawyer resigned
just last month (story
), as Farewell,
but not goodbye on the Interplay Entertainment Forums
(thanks Nels Nelson)
is a post from Damien "Puuk" Foletto that indicates that the studio is
now shut down, referring to today as his "last day at the (former) BIS."
This follows suit with a note sent along by designer John Deiley:
marks the end of an era. Black Isle Studios is no more. In yet
another sweeping layoff of employees, Interplay has officially let go the last
of it's Black Isle employees (save two that I know of) and dissolved the
division. Also, the non-announced title that the division was working on,
Fallout 3, has been "shelved" to quote management.
A map editor for XIII is now available on Ubisoft's
(direct link), providing those interested in creating levels for
the cel-shaded Unreal-engine shooter with the tool to do so. The editor is a 38
MB download, mirrored on 3D Gamers
8th Annual Video and Computer Game Report Card
is online, the latest such
evaluation from the "National Institute on Media and the Family, an
independent, non-partisan, non-sectarian, non-profit organization." Here's
Video and computer games continue to grow in popularity among
children and youth. We completed the largest student survey ever and found that
87% of youth in grades four through twelve now play video games with 96% of boys
playing regularly. This bodes well for the continued growth of the industry, and
a balanced diet of good games can certainly be a positive part of children's
lives. Nevertheless, as games become more engaging and popular, concerns about
their impact on youth become more urgent.
On a semi-related note, Major
Retailers Announce New Campaign to Enforce Video Game Rating System
describes a new initiative to achieve better enforcement of the ESRB video game
rating system (thanks HomeLAN Fed
Here's a bit on that:
The nation's leading computer and video game
retailers, in conjunction with the Interactive Entertainment Merchants
Association (IEMA), announced today a new initiative designed to prevent the
sale of Mature- rated games to children under 17 years old and increase
awareness of the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) video game rating
system. All merchants belonging to the association will now institute a national
carding program and will implement an identification check process at the point
of sale for games rated Mature by the ESRB.
) has some preliminary financial reports that offer scant reference to
upcoming conflict games. There are no details, but simply word that: "Products
for the 2004 and 2005 financial years, includes Richard Burns Rally, Conflict:
Vietnam, Midway, and Conflict 4."
) has word that the Halo story has finally come full circle, and
Bungie's shooter is now gold for the Macintosh. Word is the game: "went
into duplication late Friday night, December 5th. It'll be hitting store shelves
The Black &
White 2: Dev Diary #2 on GameSpy
features John McLean-Foreman describing how
the pivotal character of the Creature is evolving for the upcoming Black &
White sequel. He describes updated AI, new physics, new animations, differences
between creatures, and more.
and Hell Downloads Page
now features downloads of a 3.5 MB bilingual patch
for the god game that "Removes video- and multiplayer problems."
A new version 1.6 of the Battlefield 1982
modification for Battlefield 1942 is now available. The full
installer of the updated version is a whopping 310 MB, adding new weapons and
new cars to this automotive combat mod loosely based on Interstate '76 and
has a patch for Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic,
updating the Force-powered RPG to version 1.01. The update adds a couple of
balance tweaks along with a number of bug fixes. The download is mirrored on 3D
(registration required), Gamer's
A patch to update Beyond Good & Evil is now online, bringing the
third-person action adventure game up to version 1.01. The 6 MB update adds
anti-aliasing support, non-SEE CPU support, and more, available from 3D
post to our forums
has word of a glitch in the FireStarter demo that will be
addressed by a patch that will probably become available tomorrow (thanks
Enahs). Here's word:
Thanks for the heads-up. We have to admit that while
compiling a demo there was a mistake made. We are preparing a patch to address
the character speed issues, as well as clarify the RPG aspect of the game. The
patch should be available tomorrow. Please, keep an eye on www.firestarter-game.com.
And sorry for the inconvenience.
Ubisoft sends word that the promised (story
) sign-ups for beta
testing of Far Cry are getting underway today. Here's the story:
one of the world's largest video game publishers announced FAR CRY PC
Multiplayer Beta test. Commencing on Monday, December 8th at 20:00 GMT, 5,000
gamers worldwide will have the exclusive opportunity to take part in a
multiplayer beta test for Ubisoft's cutting-edge First Person Shooter (FPS) Far
Far Cry is a first-person shooter set in a lush tropical paradise that sets out
to bring the first-person shooter to an entirely new level of entertainment and
technical excellence. Far Cry's final multiplayer mode will utilize some of the
key features of the Single Player game such as Long range gameplay, Vehicular
gameplay and Beautiful tropical environments.
It will also include unique innovative features :
-The "sniper flare" that allows other players
in the game to pinpoint the position of other snipers by light reflecting from
the sniper scope.
-The support class which can build or even repair
destructible structures such as bunkers, towers, roadblocks, mounted weapons and
The beta test registration will run for several days from Monday, December 8th
2003. These individuals will be the first people outside of Ubisoft to
experience this highly anticipated FPS, and they will also work with the team in
order to help balance the game.
The initial beta signup will take place on December 8th 2003. Registration will
be via links on the www.farcry-thegame.com.
Once registration is closed, Ubisoft will select 5,000 testers that will best
reflect the widest variety of geographical locations.
GSC Game World has released a playable demo for FireStarter, their still-gold
action-packed first-person shooter. The demo offers solo and multiplayer action,
as well as a benchmark, all for a 64 MB download. Mirrors are available on 3D
(registration required), Computer
(registration required), NWSGaming.Com
SUNFLOWERS sends news of plans for another installment in their ANNO series of
strategy games. Here's the deal:
Heusenstamm. SUNFLOWERS has commissioned
Mainz-based studio Related Designs with the development of an ANNO game. The
ANNO empire-building games developed by Max Design are not affected by the new
The emphasis in the new PC game with the working title "ANNO War" will
focus more on combat than previous ANNO games and should become a strategy genre
AAA top seller for Christmas 2005. To this end the Related Designs team is being
increased from their previous 10 to at least 25 members, who can count on active
support from SUNFLOWERS.
SUNFLOWERS president Adi Boiko is pleased about the cooperation. "In
Related Designs we've found the perfect partner for the ambitious goals we've
set for ANNO War. Related Designs has already had a great deal of experience in
developing strategy games. Now, for the first time, they can enjoy a large
budget and SUNFLOWERS' active support as they develop a AAA title."
Related Designs' manager Thomas Pottkamper "We're extremely happy to have
found a partner in SUNFLOWERS, who have made it possible for us to truly fulfill
our potential for the fist time ever. We are certain that the close cooperation
with SUNFLOWERS will allow us to develop an international top
- Unreal II XMP
Adrenaline Vault's Unreal II XMP Q&A chats with Legend's Scott
Dalton about the upcoming expanded multiplayer add-on for Unreal II. They
discuss the origins of the project, game types, player classes, vehicles,
weapons, maps and more.
- Gaming in 2004
HomeLAN Fed kicks off a series of Q&As on
upcoming developments in the gaming industry, chatting with Zombie's John Williamson, Human Head's Tim
Gerritsen, and 3000AD's Derek
- Hordes of the Underdark
Watamaniuk Q&A on JeuxOnline is the English version of their
conversation (also available in
French) with BioWare's community coordinator. They discuss the Hordes of
the Underdark expansion, as well as general questions about the D&D RPG.
Roundtable #5 on Warcry News Network resumes their group discussion with
female MMORPG developers, discussing the preposterous phenomenon of the
The Server Watch
now offers a few new plug-ins for version 3.4.2 of the Server
Watch utility. The additions provide the server browsing utility with support
for the new Unreal II XMP Demo as well as Call of Duty and Jedi Knight II: Jedi
Academy. They have also issued a new version of their Halo plug-in with support
for Windows 98 and ME.
- Zdim has posted a page devoted to OBLIVION:
The Lost Secret Level, a Quake map he created as part of the design
process for Anachronox. The page has the history of the project, and raises
the possibility that the map will be released soon...
Unwashed heathens rejoice, the retro colors option has been added to the main
news page here. The archive pages and most of the main static pages have now
likewise been updated, though the forums and a couple of other areas generated
by scripts still need to be worked on, so for now we have one retro colors
option on the new format and a retro retro colors option on the old one. I am,
of course, a monkey myself, and I have to express my extreme gratitude to Frans
who has put in a yeoman volunteer effort at getting these pages updated, and
thanks in advance, as he will be instrumental in updating the remaining pages
over the coming days.
In the meantime, an issue has been raised about font sizes after the update,
and how they scale larger and smaller across different pages, so I will be
looking into creating a more consistent behavior in this area.