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Wednesday, Dec 10, 2003 Happy Birthday DOOM!

  

Steam Update

Steam News has details on the latest weekly update to the broadband content delivery system. The post describes fixes it provides for all games as well as specific changes to Day of Defeat as well as tweaks to Counter-Strike and TeamFortress Classic. Thanks Frans.

Microsoft Flight Simulator SDK

The first installment of the Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004: A Century of Flight SDK is now available for download (thanks Frans). Here's the deal: "The Flight Simulator team is publishing this reference for developers and enthusiasts who want to customize and create add-ons for Flight Simulator 2004. We're publishing the SDK in installments, which will roll out over the next several weeks. Although portions of the SDK may prove useful to Flight Simulator enthusiasts with little or no programming experience, keep in mind that many parts of the SDK assume familiarity with XML, the C programming language, and game development."

Joan of Arc Trailer

A trailer from Wars and Warriors: Joan of Arc is now available, showing off Enlight's upcoming action/strategy game based on the famed Maid of Orleans. The movie is a 104 MB download, available from The Adrenaline Vault and mirrored on Gamer's Hell and Worthplaying.

WWII Pacific Heroes Demo

A playable demo of WWII Pacific Heroes is now available, offering a sample of CITY interactive's upcoming World War II arcade air combat game. The demo features a pair of levels featuring air and ground targets for a 50 MB download, available on 3D Gamers, with a mirror available on Boomtown (registration required), FileFront, Loadedinc (registration required), and Gamer's Hell.

Jedi Academy Map Pack

A new package of six new multiplayer maps for Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy is now available from Raven Software, though the pack is provided as an unsupported "as is" release. Here's the word: "Included in this map pack are 6 new MP maps (1 Duel, 1 CTF, and 4 FFA). Once installed, new maps will appear on top of the existing ones in the map selection list. Press OK to unzip to your Jedi Academy installation folder (the default installation path is selected automatically)." The 14 MB download is available from 3D Downloads, 3D Gamers, Gamer's Hell, Loadedinc (registration required), and Worthplaying.

Chat-O-Rama

BeyondUnreal's Legend XMP Community Interview (thanks HomeLAN Fed) recaps an IRC session with the folks at Legend to discuss the just-released Unreal II XMP add-on. Also, there's a Chat Log on HomeLAN Fed recapping an IRC session with the folks at Max Gaming to discuss Dark Horizons: Lore, their upcoming Torque-engine mech game. Finally, PC Gamer Magazine sends word of plans for a Call of Duty IRC developer chat on their official IRC channel, #pcgamer on GamesNet this evening at 9:45 p.m. EST. In attendance will be Infinity Ward's Grant Collier, Vince Zampella, and Zied Rieke, all prepared to discuss their WW2 Quake III-engine first-person shooter.

Shadowbane: The Rise of Chaos Rises

The Shadowbane Website (thanks Frans) has word that The Rise of Chaos, the Shadowbane expansion pack, is now available in North America, and that the MMOG update has now gone live. Here's a bit:

The expansion for Shadowbane®, the critically acclaimed massively multiplayer online (MMO) game for both PC and Macintosh, features new high-level content including more than 30 new adventure areas and a new race, the Nephilim, a chaotic fusion of demon and man that has arisen from the forces of darkness. In addition, two new classes, the Doomsayer, a priest of Chaos, and the Sentinel, holy warriors who devote their lives to holding Chaos at bay, add to the ever-growing adventure.

MOHAA Breakthrough Patch

A patch for Medal of Honor Allied Assault Breakthrough is now available, updating the World War II shooter expansion to version 2.40b. The update adds some new skins, while addressing several bugs. The patch is a 34 MB download, available on EA Europe's FTP Server (direct link), and mirrored on 3D Gamers, Boomtown (registration required), FileFront, Gamer's Hell, and Worthplaying.

Dead Man's Hand for PC

HomeLAN Fed's Dead Man's Hand Developers Diary - Part 3 is online, offering further thoughts on the upcoming wild west shooter from Human Head's Tim Gerritson. Tim describes a glitch that caused an unfinished version of the Xbox game to be reviewed by some publications, and on a happier note, confirms that the game is also going to be released on the PC:

Many people have written in to us due to their astute observation that certain online retailers are now taking preorders for Dead Man's Hand for the PC. Yes, I can now indeed confirm that Dead Man's Hand will be released for the PC in 2004. We can't say much more than that just yet, but we will definitely be on the PC.

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War Dawns

THQ and Relic Entertainment Announce "Warhammer 40,000 Dawn of War" is the press release announcing plans for an RTS game based on the popular Warhammer 40,000 series of table-top games in the works at Relic Entertainment. Here's the deal:

CALABASAS HILLS, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 10, 2003--THQ Inc. (Nasdaq:THQI - News) today announced "Warhammer® 40,000: Dawn of War(TM)," the first real-time strategy title in its agreement with industry-leading PC development studio Relic Entertainment Inc. Based on the world of "Warhammer 40,000" -- the dark, futuristic, fantasy universe traveled by millions worldwide from Games Workshop (LSE:GAW - News), the world's largest tabletop wargames company -- "Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War" is scheduled for release in fall 2004.

"`Warhammer 40,000' encompasses an extremely rich universe where legions of warriors engage in intense tactical combat scenarios, the perfect backdrop for a real-time strategy experience," said Philip Holt, Vice President of Product Development, THQ. "When we looked for a developer, Relic's expertise in the genre and passion for the license made them the ideal fit."

Morning Q&As

Morning Previews

Psychotoxic Qu'est-ce Que C'est?

The Nuclearvision News Page (thanks Frans) has the follow-up on reports that the demise of Psychotoxic (story) have been exaggerated (story). Here's the deal: "nuclearvision and cdv made an out of court agreement. nuclearvision is now the sole owner of the rights for the project 'psychotoxic'. the game will be finnished [sic] in febuary [sic]. some publishers have already shown interest in a publishing deal."

Morning Screenshots

Kuma War Diary

Action Vault's Kuma War Developer Diary #3 is online, written by Dante Anderson, director of game development at Kuma Reality Games to discuss Kuma: War, their upcoming modern combat game. He goes into detail about the "Kuma: War classic mission entitled Operation Anaconda. It covers the 10th Mountain Division in Afghanistan in a battle at the opening of this operation on March 2, 2002."

Morning Tech Bits

Steel's World for Dungeon Siege: LOA

Version 2.1 of the Steel's World modification for Dungeon Siege: Legends of Aranna, featuring "a rewritten story with original quests and enemies, custom items, rebalanced difficulty levels with level 50 character support, and more!"

Consolidation

  • The Console Wars: Game On. Thanks Chris Johnson.
  • Atari Releases "Mission Impossible - Operation Surma." "Infiltrating stores nationwide today, Atari’s Mission: Impossible® - Operation Surma brings all the action and intrigue of the Mission: Impossible movie franchise to the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft and the Game Boy® Advance. Developed by Atari’s Paradigm Entertainment, Mission: Impossible – Operation Surma presents players with a true mission impossible as they become IMF agent Ethan Hunt in an effort to stop the diabolical plans of the Surma Corporation."
  • "Leading video games publisher and developer Namco Hometek Inc. announced today that its highly anticipated, intricately detailed, action racing experience, R: Racing Evolution, has begun shipping to retail outlets nationwide. Developed for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the Xbox® videogame system from Microsoft, and the Nintendo GameCube™."
  • "The XSN Sports World Championship will be held Feb. 11–12, 2004 in Los Angeles. Eight participants, with one guest each, will be flown to that city to compete for a $25,000 grand prize and the bragging rights that come with the title of XSN Sports World Champion."
  • EverQuest Vault EQOA Mini Q&A #1.

Competitions

World's Largest Gaming League to Standardize on NVIDIA Hardware. Also: "DreamCatcher Games’ first person shooter, Painkiller, is set to make its long-awaited first public appearance at the CPL Winter 2003 Championship, at the Hyatt Regency hotel in Dallas, Texas, from December 16th to 20th. The game will be showcased on the Nvidia and Netfire booths with a 3-on-3 Death-Match tournament taking place at Netfire’s stand."

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

  • Effective Teamwork in online Games offers the conclusions drawn by this survey that was conducted as part of a college project...
  • Shrapnel Games announces that Coliseum, Stormcloud Creations' text-based gladiator management game, is gold, and available for online purchase...
  • Group warns parents about 'killographic' games. Thanks Mike Martinez...
  • Games, Movies Tie the Knot. Thanks Mike Martinez...
  • Video Game Maker to Drop ’Kill Haitians’ Line (registration required). Thanks Mike Martinez...
  • Ubisoft sends word of a new bundle: "Enter Tom Clancy's World of Elite Counter-Terror Action as Ubisoft is pleased to announce the release of three spectacular elite counter-terror games in one, Tom Clancy's Counter-Terrorism Classics Pack! The pack includes critically acclaimed best-sellers: Rainbow Six®, Rainbow Six®: Rogue Spear (tm), and The Sum of All Fears(tm)."...

Out of the Blue

Happy birthday DOOM! I'm guessing it's as surprising to many of you as it is to me that the grand old game came out ten years ago today, so I won't try to place that in perspective. I will definitely be playing some DOOM today (probably DOOM II actually, it's hard to eschew the double-barrel shotgun) to celebrate the anniversary of what remains one of my very favorite games of all time. On a sort of related note, I see on HomeLAN Fed that some older id games, including Final DOOM, can be purchased online now at the id Software Store.

A couple of folks have written into point out the RSS feed seems to be broken... I'll try and see if I can figure out what's gone wrong with that today.

Play Time: Thrash N' Burn Skateboarding. Thanks markus friedl.
Link of the Day: Lying Brain Teasers.
Subway Centennial.
Stories of the Day: Wright Brothers the Wrong Guys?
'Elvis' Allowed To Drive Cabs In Seattle Again. Thanks Travis McPherson.
These Squirrels Are Super Cool.
Science!: Scientist Links Man to Climate Over the Ages (registration required).
Astronaut sets record for time in space.
Mars Mission’s Invisible Enemy: Radiation (registration required).
Image of the Day: Paint all over the interior. Thanks Ant.
Follow-up: Japanese fail to salvage Mars mission.
Thanks Mike Martinez.



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