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Friday, February 12, 1999

Local Files Updated  [7:21 PM EST]
I finally got the local downloads of the Half-Life demo, the Thief demo, and the Thief patch, to the following stories. The local FTP downloads are currently limited to 32 users (I believe, even though it says 128), but there's a link to the mirror on Walnut Creek (as well as other mirrors) for each as well.

New Thief Demo  [5:03 PM EST]
The Thief The Dark Project demo downloads page on GameSpot has an updated demo for Thief the Dark Project with the Assassins level. Here's a list of local download locations for the demo (53.5 MB), as well as mirror sites. As earlier, currently has a limited number of logins, while the mirror from the fine folks at Walnut Creek CDROM, of course, has considerably more.

Thief Patch  [3:35 PM EST]
Looking Glass has released a patch for Thief: the Dark Project (thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme and Here are local copies (10.1 MB). Word is the 10 MB patch includes cheat codes, EAX support, joystick support, bug fixes, and more.

Half-Life Demo Released  [3:09 PM EST]
As promised yesterday (story) PC Gamer Online has posted a playable demo of Half-Life, titled Half-Life Uplink, that contains all-new material, not included in the registered version of the game. Here is a list of download locations for the demo (48.5 MB), where it can be found at (right now with a severely limited number of logins), the fine folks at Walnut Creek CDROM (with considerably more logins), and some mirror sites. Word is Half-Life: Uplink will appear on the May PC Gamer disc. Here's word on the demo from PC.IGN.COM:

This new demo features a brand new stand-alone mission that even owners of the Half-Life game will want to download (it's 100% new levels). To grab it you can either jump over to PC gamer Online, or download it right here.

In order to play, you're going to need at least a P133Mhz with DirectX 6 and 24 MB of RAM. Keep in mind also that this file is HUGE (50MB compressed!) and it's probably going to take you quite a while to download the game. Be patient.

KillCreek Chat  [2:05 PM EST]
The ION Storm website has a reminder that today will be the second chat session about Mplayer's upcoming Daikatana Deathmatch challenge, today featuring Daikatana level designer Stevie "KillCreek" Case in a live IRC session. The chat is at 4:00 PM Pacific time today in the Chat with Stevie "KillCreek" Case chat room in Mplayer's "On Stage" Chat Lobby. More details are on the Mplayer Daikatana Deathmatch page.

New Wally  [2:05 PM EST]
Wally's Home has a new version 1.34 of the Wally texture editing tool. The new version adds full Quake 1 support to its lengthy list of compatible game-specific formats.

Modem Half-Life, Unreal & More  [11:37 AM EST]
A Tim Sweeney update to the Unreal Technology page mentions an article on Atomic Half-Life for people who want to play direct modem-to-modem multiplayer under Windows, saying that it will work for Unreal, as well as most Windows multiplayer games that are playable over the Internet (though both parties should be aware that in such games, the host/server machine has a distinct advantage with its near-zero ping). Thanks Anyware.

SE Hardware Awards  [11:37 AM EST]
Sharky Extreme 1998 Hardware Awards are up, offering the crack SE staff's crack-free opinions on the winners of the past year.

TNT2 Info  [10:49 AM EST]
The En-Riva News Page has some info from Leadtek on NVIDIA's upcoming TNT2 chipset I don't recall seeing before in an announcement they've posted about Leadtek's upcoming S320 TNT2-based accelerator. Here's what they've put up:

Heretic II Interview  [10:49 AM EST]
Tonight on Lilith & Eve, self-described as "the first ever show about games by women, for women," the ladies will play host to Activision's Steve Stringer (not, to my knowledge, a woman), about Heretic II, the upcoming H2 enhancement pack, and more. The show begins at 7:00 PM, RealPlayer, or equivalent, required.

FastCard  [10:49 AM EST]
Saw on Voodoo Extreme that version 1.0.7 of the TNT/3Dfx overclocking utility Fast Card, has been released, offering NVIDIA Detonator driver support, Unreal Direct3D settings support, Voodoo2 core speeds up to 110 MHz,  revised Banshee support, code optimizations, redundant code removal, and visual tweaks.

Pentium III Worth It?  [9:49 AM EST]
What does Pentium III bring to the party? is a CNET/ article examining the prospect of upgrading to the PIII from the PII, questioning the impact of the 70 new "Katmai" multimedia instructions, citing the lukewarm support MMX has received up to this point. Thanks Redwood. BTW, Intel is an investor in CNET.

New Crystal Space Beta  [9:33 AM EST]
The Crystal Space Beta Release page has a new version 0.11 of the Crystal Space 3D Engine. This beta release (please remember this is an engine, rather than a game) is said to be "MUCH better than the current official version," and is described as being "really close to the next official release," though its beta status is stressed. Crystal Space is a free (LGPL) 3D engine that supports curved surfaces, colored lights, mipmapping, portals, mirrors, alpha transparency, reflecting surfaces, 3D sprites, scripting, and more, and offers portability to Windows, Linux, and Mac platforms.

Quake III Arena Article  [8:56 AM EST]
Quake III Arena: Living for the Death-match is a new Houston Chronicle article on id and their work on Q3A (the article includes a sidebar called Once-raucous game maker tones down corporate culture that discusses the "corporate culture" at id, and there's a Q3A screenshot on the Technology front page). Thanks Disco Stu (who, as you should recall, "doesn't advertise"). The article discusses what the game will entail, and goes into a history of id's games (accurate, no less, since Dwight Silverman, the article's author, is an actual follower of this scene, though the description of Blue's News having quickly evolved from a hobby into a serious business is flattering, but not really the case). Here's word on the subject of "when it's done:"

Even though Quake III Arena is not due out until mid-year, the game already is stable.

"We could ship this today if we wanted to -- it's been playable for months," said model designer Steed. "We're just polishing and polishing. We want to get it right."

Q3A 3DNow!  [8:56 AM EST]
id Software Announces Continued Support for AMD's 3DNow! Technology with a quote from id Software CEO Todd Hollenshead talking about planned Quake III Arena support for AMD's 3DNow! technology. Thanks GA-Source. Here's the quote:

"Quake III Arena has been developed from the ground up to take advantage of the latest technologies such as the 3DNow! technology, to deliver the next level of gaming experience," said Todd Hollenshead, CEO of id Software.

Voodoo3 3500 Announcement  [8:56 AM EST]
3Dfx has issued more info on their upcoming Voodoo3 family of accelerators, including the announcement of the Voodoo3 3500 (some sharp-eyed readers spotted this news when I accidentally posted it prior to its official release--sorry for having to mysteriously delete that post--if I wasn't going to repost it so soon, I would have noted it). Here's the lowdown on what's been announced about the V3 2000, 3000, and 3500:

For $179.99 (suggested US retail price), the 166MHz Voodoo3 3000 AGP board is expected to generate 7 million triangles and 333 Megatexels per second at resolutions of up to 2,048 by 1,536 pixels. Manufactured by STB Systems, Inc., Voodoo3 3000 designed for true 3D game enthusiasts, will feature a 350MHz RAMDAC, TV/S-Video Out capabilities as well as a yet undisclosed game bundle featuring best-selling titles. The Voodoo3 3000 will also feature 16 MB of SDRAM. The Voodoo3 is expected to lead in real-world game performance by delivering super-fast frame rates for the most popular games.

At $249.99 (suggested US retail price), the 183MHz Voodoo3 3500 AGP board is expected to deliver up to 8 million triangles and 366 Megatexels per second at resolutions of up to 2,048 by 1,536 pixels. Designed to support the latest digital flat panel displays, the Voodoo3 3500 will include 3Dfx's proprietary flat-panel support, LCDfx. Manufactured by STB Systems, Inc., Voodoo3 3500 will be available in limited quantities for consumers who require flat panel support. Voodoo3 3500 will feature a 350MHz RAMDAC, TV/S-Video Out capabilities as well as a yet undisclosed game bundle featuring best-selling titles. The Voodoo3 3500 will also feature 16 MB of SGRAM.

Tim Sweeney Interview  [8:56 AM EST]
A Tim Sweeney interview on The Beauty of Madness, Andrew Smith's re-revived website. The conversation is centered around the future commercial release of the Unreal editor.

SEED Screenshots  [8:56 AM EST]
Beta Bites has posted 15 new SEED Screenshots as well as a preview of SEED, the upcoming first and third-person shooter from Human Soft.

Unreal Model Tool  [8:56 AM EST]
Gazpacho has posted a new version 1.06 beta of the Crusher utility which is a 3D model viewer that can save files in the Unreal file format, which will allow for the conversion of Quake II models for Unreal. The release also includes the source code, and there is also a step-by-step instructions on using the crusher.

Reviews  [8:56 AM EST]
The Adrenaline Vault reviews Turok 2: Seeds of Evil. Thanks Killjoy.

etc.  [8:56 AM EST]

Out of the Blue  [8:56 AM EST]
Can whoever runs the CombatNJ TRIBES servers (and all other TRIBES server ops for that matter) please update the server to version 1.2!! There, I feel better.

I got the buttons and listings below cleaned up (finally). It's worth noting that every one of the department pages is undergoing an overhaul, so those should be popping up in tweaked form soon. More on the subject of the buttons below, you may notice the missing World Charts Foundation button. The button went when Blue's News dropped from #56 to #69 on the chart this week after receiving 114 votes, falling behind a site that moved up from #66 to #61 behind zero votes, while another site receiving five votes moved from #48 to #10. My support for such projects is by no means predicated on this site's ranking, but that just doesn't seem fair, and I just can't see supporting them further at this point. But as for support, thanks to all who have been voting (futilely, it would seem), and the amazing support for such frivolity that had us atop that chart for so long.

Link of the day: More TeleTubbies. Thanks Ant.

Thursday, February 11, 1999

More Unreal Tourney  [11:21 PM EST]
Games.Net previews Unreal Tournament is another look ahead at Epic's upcoming game which offers new screenshots.

More on the Half-Life Demo  [9:01 PM EST]
PC Gamer Online has a page up for the Half-Life demo that will be released tomorrow at Noon (Pacific time) as reported earlier (story). The page clarifies the time zone, and offers a few screenshots from the demo, which, according to PC Gamer editor Bill Harms, includes all new material (that's an update: he originally said 80% new).

Mortyr To Debut at Extreme Annihilation  [9:01 PM EST]
Mortyr to be Shown at Extreme Annihilation Convention is the press release out of the CPL and Interactive Magic announcing that the first public showings of Interactive Magic's upcoming World War II shooter, Mortyr, will take place at the upcoming Extreme Annihilation event in Dallas.

Blood2 Add-on Shots  [9:01 PM EST]
PlanetBlood has posted three new screenshots showing off Monolith's upcoming Blood2 add-on.

Redline Preview  [9:01 PM EST]
PlanetQuake previews Redline, the game of driving and shooting, as well as just shooting, that will be released soon by Accolade.

Nintendo to Sue Over Emulator  [9:01 PM EST]
Fastest Game News Online (or as they would link it, Fastest Game News Online) is reporting that Nintendo plans on suing over the UltraHLE emulator. Thanks Chippy.

Project V1 Shots  [8:15 PM EST]
There are five exclusive Project V1 screenshots on GA-Source showing off this upcoming Unreal-engine Navy SEALs game.

STB Detonator Follow-up  [8:15 PM EST]
Gnarly McNickname over at Voodoo Extreme got a reply from STB on the subject of driver support, and sure enough, it seems the rumors (story) have gotten a little ahead of themselves as STB's Brian Burke had this to say:

STB has investigated the rumors that we have had systems blow up while testing the Detonator driver. The alleged incident never occurred. We can not find anyone who claims to have made those statements. The card's BIOS controls the core and memory clocks. It is not a function of the driver. A driver could not change either clock speed. Unfortunately, STB was not contacted by the site that originally posted the information. If we had been, we could have corrected these misconceptions.

STB is currently testing the Detonator driver for qualification. Our preliminary testing shows no significant incompatibility issues. We have seen improvements in performance. However, we can not endorse the Detonator drivers until we complete our testing

Half-Life Demo Tomorrow  [7:47 PM EST]
Word out of Valve is that a playable demo of Half-Life will be available at noon (Pacific time) tomorrow:

BELLEVUE, WA (February 12, 1999) -- Sierra Studios, Valve Software, and PC Gamer Online will launch Half-Life: Uplink, the official public demo for the worldwide smash hit game, Half-Life, Friday at noon at

"Half-Life: Uplink is a free never-before-seen Half-Life mini-mission," said Gabe Newell, co-founder of Valve. "In creating the demo, we wanted to give new players an experience that captures the essence of what makes Half-Life the Game of the Year, plus provide current Half-Life players with exciting, all-new content."

Half-Life, Valve's debut title, was released late in November, 1998. For the month of December in the United States, Half-Life generated more revenue than any other PC game.* PC Gamer, the world's best-selling PC Games magazine, named Half-Life the "Game of the Year" in its March, 1999 issue.

Turok2 PC Demo  [7:29 PM EST]
A Turok 2: Seeds of Evil PC Demo is now available for download from Turok Dot Com. Thanks Sharky Extreme. The 23 MB demo requires a 3D accelerator, and DirectX 6.1.

Experience Shots  [7:29 PM EST]
There are four exclusive screenshots from Experience on GA's new Experience website.

Slave Zero Preview, Shots  [7:29 PM EST]
Gamers Central's Slave Zero preview is up with a look ahead at this game of giant robot combat in words and pictures, and PCGameFan has posted a bunch of screenshots as well.

Messiah Movie  [5:06 PM EST]
There's a non-interactive demo of Shiny's upcoming Messiah up on MessiahWorld (thanks Voodoo Extreme). The non-interactive demo, as its called, is available as a 24 MB .avi, and a 9 MB Windows Media Player file.

NVIDIA on STB & TNT Drivers  [5:06 PM EST]
To my knowledge there has been no official announcement about driver support, or lack thereof on the STB Systems site, but Planet RIVA has heard some rumors that STB has been telling customers over the phone that they would not be using the new "Detonator" drivers for the TNT in their Velocity 4400 drivers based on the possibility they would damage the system (I must stress again that I can find no documentary evidence that this is the case anywhere, I've tried calling, but have gotten no results either way yet). The folks at PR got hold of some PR folks at NVIDIA, actually Andrew Logan, Director of Corporate Marketing, who commented on this:

1) We exhaustively test all of our driver releases across all of our board partner's products, including STB's Velocity 4400, and this problem has never manifested itself.

2) The clock frequency of the 3D processor, including the RIVA TNT, is controlled by the BIOS not the respective driver. Loading a new driver can improve performance through software without a change to the clock speed of the hardware.

3) We can understand if STB may not want to support the Detonator driver officially, since it conflicts with its new business model of being a 3Dfx-house. Having their customer's RIVA TNT-based board perform to its fullest potential hurts their new strategy.

FreeSpace 2 Beta Sign-Ups  [3:13 PM EST]
The Volition Incorporated website will be accepting sign-ups for a limited number of beta testers for their upcoming Descent FreeSpace2.  the sign-ups will be on this page after 7:00 PM Central time. Thanks BetaNews. They "will choose testers based on a variety of properties so we'll have a good mix of talent, machine configuration, location, etc."

Rainbow Six Interactive Interview  [3:13 PM EST]
The Rainbow 6 Retreat has posted their second interactive interview with Red Storm with answers to reader submitted questions about what is the weapon of choice among the new weapons in Eagle Watch, the space shuttle Buran, and multiplayer stability in Eagle Watch.

VideoLogic Does Vortex2  [2:41 PM EST]
This VideoLogic press release announces that the folks behind the PowerVR family of accelerators are setting their sights (or, more correctly, ears) on the sound card market, with the launch of their Vortex2 product, the SonicVortex2. Here's a bit of the announcement:

Key features of the SonicVortex2 include: the latest Aureal Vortex2 technology for realistic 3D audio; four speaker support for an enhanced 3D audio experience; high performance audio for games, including full hardware acceleration which frees the CPU and speeds up gameplay; legacy audio support for compatibility with A3D 1.0 and DOS based PC games; high quality audio for music/entertainment; PCI audio performance and S/P-DIF output for digital recording.

Heretic II EP Status Report  [12:14 PM EST]
Raven's Kenn Hoekstra sent along word of another strong review of Heretic II on GameGenie, also giving an update on the status of the Heretic II enhancement pack, a free add-on due for release real soon now:

On the Heretic II Enhancement Pack front, I am very pleased to report that we are "close" to releasing this bad boy. It is in the final stages of QA at Activision right now and I just gave a detailed feature list to the guys and gals out in LA. The list has dozens of new features and enhancements and I think that you will find that it's well worth the wait. I'll give you a taste of what's included in the EP and we'll provide a full feature list later:

1. Eight new DM maps from Raven's top designers
2. The new female player model...Kiera!
3. Team Deathmatch support
4. All new Ultra-Hard Armageddon mode for single player
5. An all new shrine and all new defensive spell
6. Staff Only "bladematch" mode
7. A3D 2.0 and EAX Sound Support
8. New skins for Corvus and Kiera
9. Custom skin and model support
10. New ignore feature so players can ignore the chat messages sent by other online players

Interesting? This is only the tip of the iceberg. This EP is closer to a Mission Pack than anything else. It is a true enhancement of the Heretic II gameplay.

Unreal Tournament Screensaver  [11:58 AM EST]
The Unreal Tournament section of GT Interactive's Unreal site has a new Unreal Tourney screensaver for download, available for both the Mac and the PC.

Kingpin Interview  [11:58 AM EST]
Gamer In Black interviews Drew Markham, the CEO of Xatrix, about their upcoming Quake II-engine game, Kingpin Life of Crime. The conversation mentions a Kingpin press demo and a public demo, both of which sound pretty imminent: from this quote:

"We're currently finishing up a 'press demo', and the public version should follow shortly after that. Should be within a week or two."

Experience Art  [11:58 AM EST]
Billy has posted a cool (and pretty freaky) piece of Experience art (not a screenshot as I wrote originally) on Voodoo Extreme showing off this upcoming 3D shooter/adventure game from The Whole Experience in a a 4000 x 4000 pixel render done for some cardboard stereoscopic viewers used for WXP promotions and a poster for NVIDIA.

Eagle Watch Review  [11:58 AM EST]
PC.IGN.COM reviews Rainbow Six: Eagle Watch in a more traditional review of the R6 mission pack than the one posted earlier. Thanks Killjoy.

Rocket Arena 2.22  [5:39 AM EST]
The Rocket Arena website has a new version 2.22 of Rocket Arena 2 for Quake II. The new release fixes some problems left over from the Quake II 3.20 update, and adds a few new features, including a competition mode (for clan matches), updated HUD counters, a fix for a logging bug, and improved votespam protection. The update is only required on the server-side.

LithTech Tools  [5:39 AM EST]
Version 2.1a of the LithTech tools are available on the LithTech site. The file is available as a 5.6 MB full 2.1a installer and as a 720 KB update for version 2.1.  I'm a little sketchy on what is new, or when this came out, since Monolith's Spencer Maiers' mail said the new tools came out "several days ago."

Expendable Preview, Movie  [5:39 AM EST]
There's an Expendable trailer on Sharky Extreme in AVI format (that runs a hefty 76 MB) showing off gameplay from Expendable, Rage's upcoming 3D accelerated extravaganza. This goes hand-in-hand with Sharky Extreme's updated Expendable preview which offers a look ahead at the game along with 15 screenshots.

Unreal TNT D3D Tweak  [5:39 AM EST]
RIVA 3D has posted a registry tweak for the new Detonator TNT drivers to turn on triple-buffering that is said to improve Unreal performance on K6-2 systems by about 15 to 20%. They have the registry settings as a file to import.

On 3DNow! Support  [5:39 AM EST] has posted an updated list of titles in the works that plan support for AMD's 3DNow! technology. Titles on the list include Quake III Arena, Duke Nukem Forever, Requiem, Daikatana, Anachronox, and Messiah.

OSP Tourney DM  [5:39 AM EST]
The Orange Smoothie Productions page has version 1.15 of their OSP Tourney mod for Quake II available for Windows, Linux, and FreeBSD. Word on the site is "For up to date server releases and information between official announcements, check out: We now also have an IRC channel up on ETG: #osp." Here is the list of changes:

Real for Quake II  [5:39 AM EST]
The REAL Quake II Mod is now available for download, offering special weapons and power-ups.

ServerConfigMOD Mod  [5:39 AM EST]
The ServerConfigMOD page has word of a new front-end that makes it easier to use most of the main features of this Quake II modification that adds several handy touches like high score tracking, a MOTD and an enhanced chase cam.

Square Bot Alpha  [5:39 AM EST]
The first pre-alpha version of the Square Bot for classic Quake  is now available. The bot is described as "early," with not too many features, but it does include KASCam support.

New BC3K  [5:39 AM EST]
Version 2.04 of BattleCruiser 3000 AD is now available. What's changed in the new release can be found in the version control file. The big new feature of this release is new optimizations for Voodoo cards that increases rendering speed up to 400%.

Reviews  [5:39 AM EST]
This Eagle Watch review is more of a run-through of Red Storm Entertainment's new mission pack for Rainbow Six.

Competitions  [5:39 AM EST]
The Fragland 1on1 League is set to kick off this Sunday, February 14. This is an open league that uses the Lithium mod for Quake II.

etc.  [5:39 AM EST]

Out of the Blue  [5:39 AM EST]
I and several other webmaster-types will be making a sojourn to Dallas next week to visit the offices of 3Dfx/STB for some first-hand exposure to one of the varieties of the upcoming Voodoo3 accelerator. In addition to getting to benchmark the V3 there, I'll also end up with one to batter around in the brutal Blue Laboratories for benchmarks and other impressions. All the websites involved will be asked to hold off on comments about the card until February 22, so you can expect a flurry of articles that day. Also, on February 24 there will be random drawings at each of the sites offering the chance to win one of the first Voodoo3s off the production lines, with V3 pullovers and t-shirts as second and third place prizes. I'll post more details as these events approach, but word on this has already appeared in a couple of places, so I thought I'd make sure I covered that.

A few opined on the subject of TRIBES capitalization, column castigator theAntiELVIS summed it up best: "You capitalize...a specific tribe (like 'The Dumbass Tribe'), but when used generally, you don't ('a bunch of dumbass tribes')."

Link of the day: Teletubbies' Tinky Winky is "outed"' by Falwell (Yahoo! news). Thanks Randy Perry, who hits the nail right on the head by pointing out that if you didn't know better, you'd swear you were reading The Onion.

Wednesday, February 10, 1999

Eschaton 1.1  [10:07 PM EST]
A new version 1.1 of the Eschaton Nightfall Quake II movie has been released by Strange Company on their Eschaton page. In addition to a significant reduction in the overall size of the download, the update is also said to fix all sound problems, all model problems, most unusual messages, increase sound clarity, and fix other minor bugs. The movie is still hardware only, though work continues on a software version.

New A3D Drivers  [10:07 PM EST]
Though the A3D download drivers page hasn't got them listed yet, there are new version 2.04b A3D drivers on A3D's FTP Site. You can find the 224 KB file here. Word on the update is that they are for games written to take advantage of A3D 2.0, and the update is recommended for any sound card/motherboard that uses the Aureal Vortex 2 (AU8830) chipset, and any sound card/motherboard that uses the Aureal Vortex 1 (AU8820) chipset. Lawrence, who sent this news along, says the update apparently fixes some muffled sounds in Half-Life and reduces CPU usage in A3D 2.0.

AvP Preview  [9:25 PM EST]
I missed from yesterday that Games.Net previewed Aliens versus Predator, with a look ahead and a bunch of new screenshots from Fox Interactive's upcoming installment in the Aliens series that will offer first person combat in your choice of roles between Alien, Predator, and Marine (AKA appetizer).

Oni Preview  [9:25 PM EST]
Games.Net previews Oni, the upcoming action/adventure game from Bungie that looks to, in the words of the preview, "take the tired third-person adventure format, strip away the key cards and puzzles, and add free-wheeling action that's half shooting and half fighting game." The preview offers a half-dozen new screenshots.

American McGee Interview  [7:01 PM EST]
PlanetQuake's interview with American McGee talks with Tokay about the gaming business, his previous job at id, and what he's working on now with Electronic Arts.

Still More TFC Shots, Brett Johnson Interview  [7:01 PM EST]
HalfLife.Org also has a half-dozen screenshots from valve's upcoming TeamFortress Classic mod for Half-Life. They also have an interview with Brett Johnson, a ten question Q&A with this Valve level designer.

SS2 Interview  [7:01 PM EST]
PC.IGN.COM interviews Josh Randall, the producer of Looking Glass Studio's upcoming System Shock 2. Thanks Voodoo Extreme.

Nocturne AVI  [7:01 PM EST]
The Adrenaline Vault has posted a new AVI of gameplay from TRI's upcoming 3D action adventure, Nocturne. Thanks again Voodoo Extreme.

Digital Platoon Interview  [6:28 PM EST]
Gamers Central interviews Wesley Davis and Mike Belleau of Digital Platoon about their upcoming Unreal-engine Navy SEALs game, Project V1.

On the Permedia 3  [6:28 PM EST]
3Dlabs Reports Fourth Quarter and 1998 Results is a press release on the 3Dlabs site with a mention from the 3DLabs CEO of the plans for the Permedia 3. Thanks Scott Langley. Here's the quote:

"I am also pleased to report that we have recently begun demonstrating products based on our highly anticipated PERMEDIA® 3 part and the initial responses from potential customers have been positive. This nine million transistor chip, manufactured in a 0.25 micron process, was functionally right-first-time and we expect to be in full production with the part during the second quarter," Kent noted.

More TeamFortress Classic Shots  [12:29 PM EST]
DieHard's Engineering has some more shots of TeamFortress Classic showing the Engineer, the Sentry and Dispenser (these are not of Team Fortress 2 as I wrote originally).

Kingpin FAQ  [9:00 AM EST]
Version 0.1 of the brand-new Kingpin FAQ is up on, a brand-new site devoted to this upcoming Quake II-engine game.

George Broussard Interview  [9:00 AM EST]
There's a Duke Nukem Forever Interview on talking to the 3D Realms partner about their upcoming Unreal-engine project. Here's a quote on his take on Unreal's multiplayer capabilities:

I never worried one bit about Unreal's net play. They simply shipped too soon. The new Unreal version 220 is 90% as good as Quake 2 from what I've seen and getting better. I think Unreal has finally achieved the performance they should have had when they shipped, and most people agree. I'd wager that with Unreal Tournament you will see a vast increase in Unreal's market share of online play.

Unreal Tech Update  [9:00 AM EST]
Unable to update the Unreal Technology page, Epic's Tim Sweeney sent his latest development update to PlanetUnreal. The update offers the latest on what they're doing over there, and the status of Linux Unreal, and the following to sum up the current state of Unreal Tournament, and the next Unreal patch:

Progress on Unreal 221 and Unreal Tournament continues. We are making changes and improvements at such a fast pace that it has been hard/impossible to stabilize the code for the 3-5 days required to fully test a new patch. I apologize for the earlier false start we had with 221.

Blood2 Add-on Update  [9:00 AM EST]
Jay "Shade" Wilson updated his .plan with word that his work on the Blood2 add-on is about complete, and a mention on the state of the Blood2 multiplayer patch:

Looks like I've finally wrapped up my level work for the Blood 2 add-on. Although there's still a lot of other work to be done on the add-on, I'm pretty much completely moved on to Sanity, and I've started work on my first level. So far I'm really loving the change. :)

Took a look at the Blood 2 multiplayer patch and it's looking really good. We're talking about some final game balancing issues, but at this point every build we do we hope is the last build, so it should go out soon. We sure do appreciate everyone's patience with this patch. We realize it's taken us longer than expected, but the extra time has guaranteed that we could do things right.

I've been working on some personal projects in my spare time which I'll probably make available soon. Nothing big, just working on putting my web site up again and some other stuff. Watch this space for more info.

Descent 3 Mug Shots  [9:00 AM EST]
The Official Descent 3 Web Site has word on how you can get your face included in Interplay's upcoming Descent 3 by sending in a scanned photo of your mug and your pilot's name for inclusion in the game. Thanks asm prog.

TeamFortress Classic Preview  [9:00 AM EST]
The front page of has posted impressions of TeamFortress Classic by Rotnhed and SisteR after a hands-on weekend at Valve getting to play the game. The article covers models, classes, gameplay, and more.

System Shock 2 Previews  [9:00 AM EST]
PC.IGN.COM's preview of System Shock 2, the upcoming action/RPG from Looking Glass Studios is online, offering a look ahead at the game in words and screenshots. Thanks Pyscho_Clown at Billy at Voodoo Extreme sends word that Next-Generation Online's System Shock 2 preview is also now up.

BattleZone Mission Pack Trailer  [9:00 AM EST]
The The Red Odyssey site has a demo promo movie showing off action from The Red Odyssey, an upcoming official BattleZone Mission pack from Team Evolve. The movie is in .avi format, and is approximately 14 MB.

Babylon 5, Diablo II Shots  [9:00 AM EST]
Babylon 5 Combat Simulator News page has new shots and trailers from this upcoming space combat simulator, and a Developer Closeup with "3D artist and polygon counter" Jack Nichols talking about "fitting a five-mile long space station into your PC." Also, has posted five exclusive new screenshots of Diablo II.

Qpack  [9:00 AM EST]
Version 0.26 of Qpack is up on SirLiam-vVv's Qpack homepage, the first official release of this mIRC script by Atheist-vVv that will query a Quake server to see stats on the players playing there. With a single command (from IRC) a player can load up both Qizmo (if wanted) and Quake to connect to the server.

Eraser Bot Shell  [9:00 AM EST]
PlanetEBS (proudly declaring itself "the only planet without its own domain name") has posted the release of the "gold edition" of their Eraser front-end program, the Eraser Bot Shell.

Qoole 99 Beta  [9:00 AM EST]
Beta 26 of the QOOLE 99 level editor is now available, there's no word on what's new, but beta 24 expired yesterday, so it may just extend the expiration date. More on the latest developments in Qoole can be found on Qoole: Pursuit of Perfection. Thanks e}{i|e.

qED3  [9:00 AM EST]
qED3 Homepage has a new beta version of Matt Tagliaferri's qED3 level editor which offers Half-Life support. According to Mike, who sent this along, "It's a little rough, and getting lights to work is tricky, but I made it work. If anyone wants to know how, you can put up my e-mail address."

Reviews  [9:00 AM EST]
Gamers Central reviews FireTeam, the multiplayer-only combat game with an isometric point of view...

Competitions  [9:00 AM EST]
The North American TRIBES League will begin its first season once they have registered 20 TRIBES (do you capitalize "tribes" when you're referring to a tribe, or just the game?). Also, Compétition Quake Française de Duel is a French one-on-one league for classic Quake. Also, the Degradation Unreal tournament is now accepting entries. Finally, 3DFiles is holding a 3D screensaver contest.

etc.  [9:00 AM EST]

Out of the Blue  [9:00 AM EST]
It is with sincere regret that I announce that the message boards connected to the .plan updates tracked by BlueTracker are no more. This was not a very heavily used feature, but the bad news (and reason it's been taken down) is that some of the few who were using it were using it as a forum for abuse. Strong opinions and disagreement, even when harsh, are desirable for discussion forums, but that's not what was happening here, this was just people being nasty. It's too bad... message board postings linked to news articles was a feature being worked on for Blue's News, but at this point, I've really lost my faith that this would be a positive move. The saddest aspect of this for me, is the realization that the abusers of the boards probably view this move as a victory of some sort.

I think I got knocked off-line by the guys jack-hammering outside my window (all night!!): As soon as they stopped, all was well. All was well for me at least, I woke Mrs. Blue (who managed to doze through the din) with laughter as I heard someone scream at them "it's 6:30 in the morning!" I just wonder how long they sat by their window waiting for a break to shout that, since it came almost the moment the hammering stopped. It's frustrating to be off-line with technical difficulties, but that was almost worth it for comedy value.

Tuesday, February 9, 1999

Reborn Screenshots  [6:22 PM EST]
There are four new Reborn screenshots on GA-Source showing off this upcoming 3D action/adventure from Nerve Lab Software. According to the accompanying blurb: "Reborn's environments range from dense cityscapes and claustrophobic subterranean worlds to vast outdoor landscapes. You will not only learn how to handle a set of different heavy weapons and explosives, but also drive hi- tech vehicles on land and in the air."

On TRIBES Bots  [5:08 PM EST]
The Adrenaline Vault News is reporting on the recent announcements from Dynamix on the state of the upcoming TRIBES 1.3 patch. Thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme. The update adds additional notes from programmer Greg Lancaster with more on what bot support will be included with which missions:

Turok2 Out  [4:07 PM EST]
Acclaim.Net announces that the PC port of Acclaim's Turok 2 Seeds of Evil is now "in stores everywhere." Thanks The Turok Cave. Here's word on the game from the announcement:

With a multitude of new multiplayer maps, gorgeously re-textured graphics, and Gamespy Lite support right out of the box, deathmatching has never been so much fun. Plus you get everything Turok is known for: huge levels, the finest arsenal of weapons ever assembled, a cadre of the most vile enemies -- all rendered beautifully using the most advanced technology available.

Andrew Sanchez R.I.P.  [4:07 PM EST]
In Memory of Andrew Sanchez is the initial page of Maximum PC, commemorating the passing of MPC's senior editor this weekend from cardiac arrest. Condolences to Andrew's friends, colleagues, and family.

Heretic II Enhancement Pack Update  [3:07 PM EST]
Jake "The Gent" Simpson updated his .plan with some commentary on DuvalMagic's RBR post-mortem, a bit on the Rogue Squadron and South Park console games, and word on the status of the Heretic II Enhancement Pack, which is now in QA. Here's the part about the Enhancement Pack, which sounds pretty imminent:

The EP is now in final QA.. we don't want any problems creeping up on us from behind over this, we want to get this right first time, like we did with the retail release. Add to this an OEM deal we are trying to produce at the same time, and mix in only three people on this and you have a recipe for lots of work and yet more late nights. I know our illustrious leader Pat Lipo has been flogging his guts out over this and us other two minions have been working pretty hard too. On the plus side though, what we've come up with is definitely an Enhancement Pack, and almost a mission pack. I wont go into all the enhancements right now, since it would take too long and I wouldn't remember them all anyway. Suffice to say, we are pretty happy with what we've accomplished, and the beta testers seem fairly happy too. At least thats what they say :)

More TF Classic Shots  [1:27 PM EST]
More TeamFortress Classic screenshots are online than mentioned earlier (story), with new shots (all different from each other) on Ethereal TF, TF2HQ.COM, CF TF (thanks Billings from CF TF for the lowdown on all theses shots), The TF Times,, and the UK Fortress Newsdesk.

Doom Movie News  [1:27 PM EST]
A load of email showed up in my box sharing the news that Todd McFarlane appeared on the Howard Stern show this morning, and when questioned about the potential Doom movie, apparently confirmed that he was indeed working on a script for the project. Thanks devilbunny. HTML|fool says his specific comment was he was supervising the script and was doing production design.

Bobby Pavlock Interview  [1:27 PM EST]
There's an interview with Bobby "Xcalibur" Pavlock on Rust talking to this ION Storm level designer about his work on Daikatana, and game design in general.

Jay Wilbur Interview  [1:27 PM EST]
Game-Online vs Jay Wilbur is a new interview with the ex-id Software biz guy, now with Epic Games, that talks about their upcoming Unreal Tournament.

Sharky Interview  [1:27 PM EST]
There's an interview with Alex "Sharky" Ross on pels.interactive in their finish the sentence format. Also, the Sharkster is the subject of the current community profile on loonygames for a more in--depth Q&A.

New Sonique  [1:27 PM EST]
A new version 075 of the Sonique .mp3 player is up on Thanks Manpreet Jagpal.

TeamFortress Classic Screenshots  [6:14 AM EST]
PlanetFortress has posted a half-dozen new screenshots from Valve's upcoming free back-to-the-future Half-Life mod, TeamFortress Classic, and word there and from Jason Barnes is that OZ TF also has new TF Classic shots (the site is down as of this writing).

Mortyr FAQ  [6:14 AM EST]
Version 0.2.01 (called an "open beta") of a new Mortyr FAQ is up on the newly opened Widerstand, devoted to iMagic Online's upcoming World War II game, Mortyr.

Soldier of Fortune Forums  [6:14 AM EST]
Kenn Hoekstra updated his .plan mentioning the Soldier of Fortune Game Forums on GameForum where he says "About ten guys from the SoF team drop by there daily to answer questions."

H2 T2 & D3 TV  [6:14 AM EST]
Gamespot TV has a few new RealPlayer segments on games of interest here, with a recent piece on Heretic II, a conversation with David Dienstbier about Turok 2: Seeds of Evil, and a piece on Descent 3, as well as a video review of Baldur's Gate and a preview of X-Wing Alliance.

Chicken Arena  [6:14 AM EST]
Also from Kenn Hoekstra's .plan is word of a new Heretic II mod called Chicken Arena. The mod is multiplayer only.

Entron DM Tech Demo  [6:14 AM EST]
Eric Cartman's pals at Endor Productions send word of the release of a non-interactive technology demo of a project from them called Entron Freedoms Edge. This thing is pretty wild, with combat between two opponents in an arena that takes a different course each time it's played. Here's the deal:

Endor Productions, Inc. is proud to present Entron Deathmatch Arena a technology demo we have constructed to demonstrate just a few of the new features we will have available to public to toy with for the developer as much as the player. The Non-interactive demo demonstrates our new scripting and AI structure. This demo is merely a single sequence modified from the full retail release Entron - Freedom's Edge. It has been modified in an entertaining fashion that even the public will enjoy. For more details about the demo and about the final retail release, please visit the Official Website.

New PowerStrip  [6:14 AM EST]
EnTech Taiwan has posted a new version of their Win95/98 monitor control program, PowerStrip. Thanks Voodoo Extreme.

Follow-up  [6:14 AM EST]
Another feature of the new GameSpy 2.08 released yesterday that I failed to mention is support for the upcoming release of Accolade's Redline.

Competitions  [6:14 AM EST]
The Half-Life Tourney League is just getting underway, the FFA division is filled, but there are still openings in the team division.

Reviews  [6:14 AM EST]
3DGN's Hydra-SB Review looks at this server browsing program. Also, HardwareCentral's Terminator Beast SuperCharged Review is up. Finally, Ars Technica reviews the Gainward CARDEXpert TNT.

etc.  [6:14 AM EST]

Out of the Blue  [6:14 AM EST]
I mentioned my favorite new show to Billy recently, and I saw him mention it, so I figured I should share this here too: If you have HBO (or a friend with HBO you can impose upon), I highly recommend checking out the Sopranos. After four episodes, I think it's the best thing on TV.

It's hard to strike me speechless, but this will do it: Is this thing freaky, or what?

Monday, February 8, 1999

On TRIBES Patches  [8:13 PM EST]
Dynamix' Tim Gift updated his .plan with more on the aftermath of the 1.2 patch, which left some problems behind, and will lead to a version 1.3 soon. Here's an excerpt (the complete update explains their version numbering scheme):

Looks like we had a few problems with the 1.2 patch. The 1.2 patch had a number of changes, some of them we considered pretty critical. We were pushing to get the patch out, but as with anything that is rushed, problems creep in and are not caught. We'll correct those over the next few days and get a revised 1.2 patch out, which will actually bump the number to 1.3.

Half-Life DM Tips  [8:13 PM EST]
The weapons and strategy sections on the Half-Life Deathmatch Strategy Guide have been updated with info on health/HEV station entries, amendments to the Glock and Gauss gun entries, and more.

Registered GameSpy 2.08  [7:49 PM EST]
The GameSpy 3D site has version 2.08 of GameSpy available for registered users. The new release offers support for version 1.2 of Starsiege TRIBES, and a GameSpy version 2.08 shareware release is promised "within the next week or so, depending on how well the beta testing goes with the registered users."

John Jack Q&A  [7:23 PM EST]
PlanetShogo has posted a Q&A with Monolith's John Jack, where we learn the status of Shogo ports, of which a DreamCast port is said to be the most likely to be made (though nothing is certain). The Q&A asks about other current happenings, other games, and this answer on the question of the status of a Shogo 2.2 patch:

We're doing internal QA testing now, and are basically done with any code changes for 2.2. We should begin external testing this week with our small beta test team, so hopefully we'll be releasing the 2.2 patch some time next week. We've been testing a beta version of the 2.2 server for the past week or so, and the stability looks to be improved. The 2.2 patch includes DirectSound3D/EAX/A3D support via Miles, extended joystick support (including the PantherXL), AMD 3DNow! optimizations, as well as several minor bug fixes and enhancements.

Tim Gift Q&A  [7:03 PM EST]
PlanetStarSiege has posted a brief three question Q&A with Dynamix' Tim Gift about the state of the Starsiege TRIBES OpenGL patch and the editing tools, both due soon after an upcoming patch to fix the minor problems that remain after the 1.2 patch, which include the opengl.dll issue for some, and some keyboard problems.

Unreal Tournament Preview  [5:28 PM EST]
There's a Sneak Peek at Unreal Tournament on GamesMania offering a look ahead at Epic's upcoming Unreal-engine game including ten new screenshots. The preview currently doesn't seem to display under Netscape, but works in Explorer (usually a problem with tables causes that).

Dank & Scud Unplugged  [5:28 PM EST]
There's a new storyboards section on The New Adventures of Dank and Scud site showing the hand-sketched storyboards for each issue of the dangerous duo's adventures.

Anachronox Preview  [4:58 PM EST]
PC Games previews Anachronox in a look ahead at ION's upcoming Quake II-engine RPG, offering quotes from designer Tom Hall, and offering some screenshots. Thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme.

Dispatched Preview  [4:58 PM EST]
Sharky Extreme first glimpse of Dispatched is up with a preview and screenshots of Rage's "soon-to-be-announced" action game.

New AirQuake2  [4:58 PM EST]
Version 0.65 of AirQuake 2, the airborne Quake II mod, is now available. The new version fixes a bunch of bugs, and adds one new vehicle, the 2S6 Tunguska Anti-Aircraft vehicle.

SinED Tutorial  [4:58 PM EST]
There's a Sin Level Design Tutorial on Rust explaining how to create levels for Sin using SinED. Thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme.

NVIDIA Reference Drivers  [2:10 PM EST]
RIVA3D has posted the latest "Detonator" reference drivers from NVIDIA for the TNT. There are new Win95/98 and WinNT drivers for the TNT and also for the RIVA 128/ZX, both AGP and PCI.

TRIBES Bots Plans  [5:12 AM EST]
There's word on PlanetStarSiege that some kinks in incorporating bots into TRIBES have been worked out, and that a release is expected soon of a new mission type that adds bot support, and modified missions to include drone emplacements. Thanks Killjoy. Here's the wrap-up:

Since development time on the AI was limited, their functionality is also limited. They will change weapons, attack, track targets..... but more or less they will just run the paths that were assigned to them.

We have put together a package that will be released sometime early next week. It will include: A new Bots mission type that can be used as a mod( started with the mod command line. Tribes -mod bots) and will include a modified mission from each mission type with drone implacements. If you have any questions at all, please write me at, or write Lincoln Hutton at We should be doing a plan update to reflect all this soon.

Word from Tribe One is that when information on how to add AI containers is released, it will also be added to their TRIBES container listing for editing types to be able to monkey with bots too.

Heretic II Walkthroughs  [5:12 AM EST]
The Spirit Shrine (say that three times fast) is a site on with walkthroughs on single-player Heretic II, as well as tips and techniques for multiplayer play.

Immortal & Makaveli Interviews  [5:12 AM EST]
There is an Immortal interview and a Makaveli Interview on FPS Spectator (dedicated to first person shooter competitions and tournaments), talking to both feared Quake II players about competing, games, and similar matters. FPS Spectator is now offering full coverage of the PGL Season 4.

loony for Games  [5:12 AM EST]
Here's the lowdown on this week's issue of loonygames, with the announcement taking the theme, "loonygames begs for issue twenty four." The new crop of articles, as usual, will be posted throughout the week according to a schedule as startlingly precise as the most carefully tuned European railroad timetable:

Yeah, it's got a problem with that? Begging for change this week:

New Expert Quake  [5:12 AM EST]
Version 3.1 Expert Quake for Quake II is now available offering a few weapons tweaks (grenades in particular), changes to obituaries, flood protection, and bug fixes. Thanks Sluggo.

Bad Clan Mod  [5:12 AM EST]
Version 0.45 of the Bad Clan Mod for Quake II is now available, for both Windows and Linux adding a bunch of new features including laser targeting and a flashlight. The homepage has been conveniently translated to English for those who won't do French no matter how bilingual they're feeling.

New Q2Text  [5:12 AM EST]
Version 1.4 of Q2Text is out, featuring a preview window, the ability to type straight into the message, and a config manager which makes it easier to manage multiple config files.

New 3DUtil   [5:12 AM EST]
The 3DUtil homepage has a new version 0.02 of the 3DUtil OpenGL model viewer, offering a new installer, several bug-fixes, an improved rendering interface, and more.

Reviews  [5:12 AM EST]
There's an Intel Pentium III 450 and  500MHz Review on the Review Zone that claims to be the real deal (as opposed to "engineering samples...fake reviews and wannabe previews)." Also, the overhauled review section at Mod Central now offers new reviews of Digital Paint's Paintball II (beta 5.1), the new St. Vitus mod, and the latest Disposable Heroes v3.0 preview of M.A.D: Rocket Wars.

etc.  [5:12 AM EST]

Out of the Blue  [5:12 AM EST]
Since I've been sharing vague reports on the status of the semi-mysterious ProjectX (which has been underway behind the scenes here for a while) I should share that the project has hit a few snags, so if it sounded like things were racing along (and they were), they no longer are. This is actually one of those uncertainties that was fairly certain in advance anyway, since Murphy's Law rules this sort of project.

Yesterday's User Friendly Comic points to the similarity between the Euro and the Quake II logo, the subject of an Image of the Day here in November '97.

Image of the day: A credit union in Twinsburg, Ohio where they probably never have problems collecting on loan payments. Thanks Kao_Pai.

Sunday, February 7, 1999

Quake II Toys  [1:42 PM EST]
I've received a couple of emails mentioning sightings of the Quake II action figures at some retail locations, with Grayson "U" Smith sharing word that he's seen them at both Babbages and Software Etc., also mentioning that the Tank figure weighs in at three pounds(!).

Hired Guns Shots  [1:04 PM EST]
The screenshot happy folks at GA-Source have posted 15 New Hired Guns Screenshots showing off this upcoming Unreal-engine 3D action/adventure game that is a sequel to the original Hired Guns for the Amiga.

Starsiege Shots  [1:04 PM EST]
Three new screenshots from Starsiege, Dynamix' upcoming game that takes place between Earthsiege and Starsiege TRIBES are online, two at Datumplane::Starsiege, and one more at Bad Karma Mecha News.

Wheel of Time Interview  [1:04 PM EST]
World of Dreams interviews Warren Marshall talking to one of the level designers on GT Interactive/Legend's upcoming Unreal engine game. They've also posted a scanned image of the first WoT teaser from GT.

TRIBES Config Editing  [1:04 PM EST]
Editing the Configuration Files in TRIBES is a new section on PlanetStarSiege dedicated to helping work out the kinks in your TRIBES config by explaining a bit about all those variables from the prefs files. Thanks Billy at Voodoo Extreme.

Quake TV Guide  [1:04 PM EST]
The Asylum has posted a tutorial on using the Qizmo proxy to broadcast QuakeWorld matches on Quake TV. Here's what's so cool about that:

Most QuakeWorld tournaments ban spectators, so there is less load on the server. This is a way many people to watch a game, without putting any extra load on a server. It covers everything you need to know to get QTV working, including voice channel support (talk to other QTV viewers!). There is not enough of this around, and it would be a nice change to watch some of the big matches as they happen. A good read for anyone who wants to watch or broadcast a QuakeWorld match this way

From the Quake TV Guide crossword puzzle: Rocket Launcher (abbr), 2 letters.

Half-Life Editing Resources  [1:04 PM EST]
Half-Life Analysis is "a page devoted to the strategic and mathematical analysis of all aspects of multiplayer gameplay and design for the game Half-Life. Strategy will be discussed, as well as gameplay and strategy in level and modification design, which is this page's principle purpose - to encourage and aid designers to create a better Half-Life." New on the site is an essay on the use of the rocket launcher

TRIBES Editing Resources  [1:04 PM EST]
Word from Tribe One is that they've cooked up some helpful new resources for TRIBES players including reviews of The Xtreme Map Pack and Chaos Wastelands (both for TRIBES), and some new tools for those who would edit TRIBES maps:

New Tools
The Tribes Container Listing is a reference document of name specific container classes for use in Tribes Editing.
The Tribes Editor FAQ is answers most of the common questions asked by people doing Tribes mission editing.

For TRIBES 1.2 Problems  [1:04 PM EST]
There's a tip on PlanetStarSiege from Dynamix' GotMilk? on how to work around problems a few folks have had with the version 1.2 patch (thanks Killjoy):

"...One of the biggies, is the game will not run without GLU.DLL. Got Milk? from Dynamix suggests heading to this page for the files you need. As for the other install bugs, my suggestion is to copy the files that it fails on, off the CD, and overwrite the files the patch is tripping over."

Linux Gloom  [1:04 PM EST]
The download section on Gloom's Official Homepage has a new version of the Gloom server for all varieties of Linux.

Reviews  [1:04 PM EST]
Sharky Extreme's Abit BX6 2.0 mainboard review is up (related link, GA-Source's news on the ABIT ZM6). Also, Tweak3D reviews the Matrox marvel G200-TV. Finally, the TNT rally on Pfuscher´s Techware has been updated with the addition of another TNT, the Asus V3400 TNT/TV, bringing the number of suspects in their investigation to eight.

Competitions  [1:04 PM EST]
The Heavy Gear II News Network reports a contest that will begin next week where two grand prize winners will receive a signed picture of a gear from the Activision development team. Official rules will be posted tomorrow (Monday).

etc.  [1:04 PM EST]

Out of the Blue  [1:04 PM EST]
Back from a bit of post-LAN party hibernation. I had a tremendous time LANing yesterday, mad props to our net-celeb host Spuds for being the host with the most. Much fun was had by all, with TRIBES, Half-Life and Quake II (Rocket Arena 2) dominating the day, with the TRIBES newbies becoming hardcore fans right away (it was the hit of the day). The most interesting (and telling) aspect was that, in stark contrast to LAN parties of years ago where the majority of difficulties were hardware glitches, the biggest glitch yesterday was making sure everyone had the latest versions of each game. "Who's got a copy of the patch?" was the quote of the day, and one game, Delta Force, couldn't be played at all because the 1.2 patch wouldn't work on all the systems (the patch is a homemade jobbie, DF is made to auto-update). Anyway, troubles aside, it remains my heartfelt recommendation, if you enjoy multiplayer gaming: Getting together face-to-face with your buddies, some PCs, and a pile of junk food like this is highly recommended.

Link of the day: The Z-Bot 2 homepage, and this time the Z-Bot is fully legal, though a healthy purchase price is involved (thanks RepoMan).

Saturday, February 6, 1999

More RBR Post Mortem  [12:35 PM EST]
Magic Memories is a guest editorial on The Adrenaline Vault by Randy "DuvalMagic" Pitchford giving the inside view of the final days at Rebel Boat Rocker. The piece includes insights gained into the workings of the computer game industry, and offers a list of the Top Ten Things Not to Do in Your New Game Development Studio Start-Up," and an image of the Rebel Boat after being sunk (apparently from too much rocking). For future reference, here's that top 10 list:

10. Do not give everyone equal authority in everything.
9. Do not sign an office lease that is longer than your first project contract.
8. Do not burn bridges.
7. Do not to choose a name for your game that doesn't make sense without further explanation.
6. Do not solicit contract and external level designers until the tools are finished.
5. Do not be afraid to cut content that was too ambitious in the design.
4. Do not dye your hair -- and, therefore, your hands and skin -- blue the night before the money visits.
3. Do not appoint two leads for the same department.
2. Do not shake the lava lamp or taunt the happy-fun ball.
1. Never attempt to create new technology for your first first-person title. License for title one while building tech for title two.

Eagle Watch Review  [12:35 PM EST]
The Adrenaline Vault reviews Rainbow Six: Eagle Watch, the R6 mission pack from Redstorm Entertainment. From the article, here's a nutshell view of the mission pack:

Eagle Watch picks up where the original Rainbow Six left off...sort of. While the events in the mission pack do transpire after those of the original game (and really the continued operation of Rainbow as a counterterrorist group is due to their initial success in stopping the spread of the Brahma virus), there is no central plot or storyline that ties the five new single-player missions together. Instead, they are all self-contained operations that take place around the globe, in famous "historic landmark" locations. There's "Little Wing," featuring the Russian space shuttle and launch platform; "Sapphire Rising," a hostage rescue in India's magnificent Taj Mahal; "Lion's Den," set in London's Big Ben and Houses of Parliament; "Red Lightning," a mission in Bejing's forbidden City; and finally "Eagle Watch," which takes place in the Senate Wing of the U.S. Capitol Building.

The mission pack also features two new training missions -- supposedly designed to help players deal with the stresses of multiplayer -- and new multiplayer games, like "Assassination," in which each team tries to kill the opposing team's general. Also available is the ability to play any of the game's solo missions in multiplayer, in essence having to contend with other players and the computer-controlled terrorists.

John Romero Chat Log  [11:11 AM EST]
There's a John Romero chat log on Mplayer's Daikatana Deathmatch site with the transcript of yesterday's talk with JR about the upcoming Daikatana deathmatch demo, and the ensuing Mplayer competition where players will try and beat him at his own game.

Wages of Sin Preview  [11:11 AM EST]
The Adrenaline Vault previews Wages of Sin, 2015's imminent mission pack for Sin. The piece also offers a bunch of screenshots. Thanks Killjoy.

Newer EGN2  [11:11 AM EST]
Turns out I was a little slow on the news of EGN2 Alpha 572, but to quickly get back on top of that situation, EGN2 Alpha 576 is now available on the Enternet Global Network site, offering TRIBES 1.2 support in this combination server browser program/ICQ-type chat client. This release is mainly to enable TRIBES support, and word is that "GameScan and other gaming features are being worked on..."

Q2: Ground Zero IAS Patch  [11:11 AM EST]
The Extreme Audio Reality site has a new release of their interactive surround sound patch that adds 3D-enhanced audio to Rogue's Quake II mission pack, Ground Zero.

Game IRC Announcements  [11:11 AM EST]
I've received a couple of announcements of new gaming IRC efforts. Apparently these have sprung from rifts at GamesNet, which of course, stands with 3DNet as the most prominent gaming-oriented IRC networks (to my knowledge). First this, on GameNode:

We would like the community to know that we offer a stable IRC network with full channel services and a staff dedicated to providing the best service available...

The servers that are currently available are: VA.GameNode.Net PA.GameNode.Net NY.GameNode.Net RI.GameNode.Net with more soon to be linked.

And this on ETG, from Hell Xpress:

ETG is an irc network dedicated to the gaming community. Since they have server's located throughout the US, lag is brought down to a minimum. Also, the ircops are always there to help with any problems.

All the servers and ircops can be found on

Q2Text Edit  [11:11 AM EST]
Version 1.3 of Q2Text is now available, providing a program that allows the quick and easy creation of text messages for Quake II using a drag-and-drop interface.

Eschaton Follow-up  [11:11 AM EST]
Following-up on yesterday's release of the new Eschaton: Nightfall movie (story), the Strange Company page has a 490 KB zip file that will fix sound problems with the movie, as well as some other glitches (and is therefore preferable to use over other unofficial fixes that have been posted).

Reviews  [11:11 AM EST]
There's an ATi Rage Fury 128 Feature on Ritualistic that's not a review, but a first look at ATi's latest using alpha drivers. AnandTech reviews the Hercules Terminator BEAST Supercharged. Thanks Wes Townsend.

Out of the Blue  [11:11 AM EST]
I'm not sure if there's a typically concurrent BeatDown, but me and my mutant buddies are going to be hitting the LAN action pretty hard today into this evening. After I leave this afternoon, I doubt I will be available to update before first thing tomorrow morning.

Link of the day: A recent Link o' the day has moved to its own domain. That's right,! Thanks Euchrid.

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