Archived News:

Monday, Aug 07, 2000

Blair Witch Shots

New screenshots from Terminal Reality's Blair Witch Volume 1: Rustin Parr are up at Daily Radar this evening. The four shots show off several different locations from this upcoming Nocturne engine title, which is actually the first of three such games being released this Fall.

Echelon Preview

PC.IGN has posted a hands-on preview of Echelon, the action-oriented space-sim from Buka Entertainment and Bethesda Softworks. The preview is based on the pre-alpha build of the game they received, and contains details on the game's impressive engine (which features "continent-sized worlds") and collision system, along with many new screenshots.

Throne of Darkness Shots

Plenty of new screenshots from Throne of Darkness are online this evening: PC.IGN has six shots up, which are taken from their "very early" build of the game, and 25 more are available at GameSpot along with a previously available cinematic trailer.

Startopia Interview

Mucky Foot designer Wayne Imlach is interviewed on Game-Interviews.com, talking about their upcoming 3D strategy game Startopia. Wayne explains the oddball concept behind the game, how their 3D camera functions, and the multiplayer modes that will be included in addition to other topics.

Side Scene Site

The Other Guys, not to be confused with these guys, have revamped their Side Scene website, featuring new and updated story and game information on their third-person horror adventure game, as well as a bunch of new high-res screenshots.

Evening Screenshots

Unreal Tournament 425 Mac Patch

As expected, Westlake Interactive has released the version 425 patch for Unreal Tournament, bringing their Mac port of Epic's first-person shooter in sync with the Windows and Linux releases. There are no Mac-specific fixes, and as before with the PC versions, this release is network-compatible with 413 servers. A mirror is available at 3D Gamers.

Conquest Preview

Gamecenter has written a new preview of Conquest: Frontier Wars, the upcoming strategy game from Digital Anvil and Microsoft. The preview text itself is fairly brief, but does contain some interesting details, and there are seven new screenshots showing off the 3D engine (although the game itself is played in a mostly 2D fashion).

The Conquerors Gold

The reliable site Gone Gold is reporting that Age of Empires II: The Conquerors, the add-on pack for AoE II has gone gold, and will be appearing in stores "soon." For those curious as to what the pack contains, GamePro.com has posted their First Look at it, which features a handful of new screenshots.

Battle Isle Patch

Blue Byte has released another patch for the closed beta of Battle Isle, updating their 3D turn-based strategy game to version 0.026. There are updates for both the previous version and the initial release, so if you're participating you may want to check it out.

Sub Titans Map

Ellipse Studios has released a new multiplayer map for Submarine Titans, expanding their just-released aquatic real-time strategy game. The new map is named "Corium Rush" and can simply be unzipped into your Submarine Titans /custom directory.

Psycho Circus UK Patch

Third Law has released a patch for the UK edition of KISS Psycho Circus, available at the official fansite for their just-released first-person shooter. The patch fixes "some crashing problems that some folks were having" and is a mere 803 KB download.

Misc. Q&As

Three Q&As are online for your reading enjoyment this evening: a brief chat with id Software level designer Paul Jaquays is up at PlanetQuake, talking with him about this past weekend's QuakeCon (including its future, as id's next title isn't a Quake game). Also, GamersEd has kicked off their "A Week in Our Worlds" series with Q&As with ION Storm's Stevie Case and Raven's Eric Biessman, asking each about what they do and how they got there.

Crimson Skies Interview

Crimson Skies Interview on The Corporation is a chat with John Howard, lead designer of this alternative-history action flyer by Zipper Interactive. John talks about the game's premise, the development process (which, when finished next month at the game's release, took place in a remarkably short 15 months), and what sets this game apart from more realistic flight sims.

Arcanum Beta Announced

While it has already been mentioned here once before (story), Sierra today formally announced their beta program for Arcanum: Of Steamworks & Magick Obscura, an upcoming RPG from Troika Games. The beta, which will only contain a brief portion of the game, will be released in September, and the feedback will be used to polish the game before its February 2001 release date.

ShockEd Released

As noted in this thread on Through the Looking Glass, the first public version of ShockEd, a level editor for System Shock 2, has been released (thanks Ant). This first release contains the editor itself and a brief tutorial, and is available for download via SShock2.com. Update: the file has been taken offline, as it was not intended for mass distribution.

Horizons Interview

A brief interview with Artifact Entertainment's David Allen is up at Digital Game Developer, talking with him about their upcoming massively multiplayer RPG Horizons. In addition to talking about their games, David goes into some detail about the state of the gaming industry and has some advice for those considering a startup development house of their own.

The Fallen Direct3D DLL

Like Epic for Unreal Tournament (story), The Collective has released a new version 1.8c Direct3D .DLL for their Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - The Fallen demo, which hopefully remedies long caching delays or generally slow performance with certain video cards.

Elite Force Screenshots

Scifi-Gaming has posted fifteen new screenshots of Star Trek: Voyager - Elite Force, taken from the beta of Raven's first-person shooter that is floating around. Elsewhere, GameSpot UK offers two galleries of screenshots, focusing specifically on the multiplayer side of the game.

Neverwinter Nights Interview

Inside Mac Games has conducted an interview with Trent Oster on Neverwinter Nights, the 3D role-playing game in development at BioWare. The questions naturally deal with porting the title to the Mac, but also with the multiplayer features, the story modules, and the toolset that will be included in the release.

Levelord's Alice?

The Levelord, no doubt fresh from several days of sleep after completing Heavy Metal: FAKK2, updated his .plan with word that he's going to be heading across town to Rogue, where he'll be helping out with American McGee's Alice. Here's what the man has to say (note that he is not leaving Ritual):
If I seem to be unavailable for the next 8 weeks, it's because I'll be over at Rogue helping with Alice. What a great stroke of fate! I'm not psyched about jumping from Heavy Metal crunching directly into another game's last stretch, but anytime I can work on a game with a twisted theme, and little girls, and drugs, ...well, you know, I'm there!
Update: The Shugashack sends word that Ritual's Pat "velcro wallet" Hook and Beau Anderson are also helping out the boys at Rogue.

3000 AD Gets Serious

3000 AD has announced that they have licensed Croteam's Serious Engine (which powers the first person shooter Serious Sam) for an unnamed PC and Xbox title. The game, which is codenamed "Project ABC" will be aimed for a much different audience than the Battlecruiser 3000 series (which is known for its remarkable complexity) and joins Battlecruiser Millennium and Galcom Online as the third title in development at the company. There is also a new MP3 featuring music from the Battlecruiser Millennium soundtrack up at the game's official site.

Half-Life Platinum Edition Announced

As reported on AVault, Sierra has announced the Half-Life Platinum Edition. This soon-to-be-released package of the game contains the latest versions of Half-Life, Opposing Force and Team Fortress Classic, along with Prima's strategy guide and a collection of Half-Life mods. No doubt this will make a fine addition to collections consisting of Half-Life, Half-Life: Game of the Year Edition, Half-Life: Adrenaline Pack, Half-Life: Initial Encounter, Half-Life: Day One, and believe it or not, all the other versions out there.

Undying Diary

GameSpy.com has brought life into a Clive Barker's Undying Developer Diary, and in this first installment an unnamed member of the Undying team describes the birth of the project, the creation of the game's story, and their use of the Unreal Tournament engine, while a bunch of new screenshots illustrate the proceedings.

Magic & Mayhem 2 Interview

Also on GameSpy.com this morning is an interview on Magic & Mayhem: The Art of Magic, talking with producer Andy Smith about this 3D real-time strategy game with role-playing and adventure elements by Charybdis. Andy discusses this mix of game genres, the 3D engine, single- and multi-player, and a few other topics.

Audio Carmack Workshop

This page on 3D Downloads has an audio version of John Carmack's talk this weekend at QuakeCon 2000 (story). The recording is presented in .mp3 format which comes out to an 11 MB download (audio is described as not the highest quality).

Ritual Interviews

GameCyclus FAKK2 Interview (Englisch) is their conversation with Ritual programmer Mark Dochtermann, which they've posted in Mark's native English, rather than the site's native German. Questions include things like when Germany can expect localized versions of FAKK2 (currently winging its way to US stores), more on Ritual's upcoming plans, and, amusingly, "Are you like the main charakter of Fakk2?" (who is, of course, based on Amazonian actress Julie Strain). Also, Voodoo Extreme Interviews Robert Atkins of Ritual, asking about what he's up to now that the game is complete, about future console plans, and stuff like that.

Warren Marshall Interview

PlanetUnreal interviews Warren Marshall, talking with the former Legend Entertainment designer/programmer who now plies his trades for Epic Games. The conversation covers level design, mods (Rocket Arena UT in particular), and the recent release of the updated UnrealED 2.0, which is Warren's project.

Morning Screenshots

Tech Bits

Quake Movie

The Nehahra Project Homepage has the debut release of Seal of Nehahra, an epic movie built using an enhanced version of the Quake engine. Hopefully you will understand that we haven't gotten to check this out before making a post about this, since the 500 MB movie has a full three hour(!) running time (though it's "only" a 95 MB download).

New Classic CTF

The Classic CTF website has a new version 0.99c of the Classic CTF modification for Quake III Arena. Classic looks to provide many, well, classic styles of play into one mod, combining a grappling hook with "Q1 style damage," Runes (Techs) inspired by Threewave, Q1-style Super Nailgun and Lightning discharge, Q2 style Weaponstay, armor classes, ladders, and flag trails, along with Q3 default physics.

New Q3A Requiem

The Q3A Requiem page has a new version 0.8 of the Requiem mod for Quake III Arena. The new version introduces a ton of changes, including tweaks to gameplay, changes to configurability, and an enhanced interface, including a new HUD. This is meant to be feature complete, and the plan is to release another test version, and then push out version 1.0.

Rocket Crowbar for Half-Life

A new version 16 of the Rocket CrowBar Half-Life Mod is now available. The new release improves the rudimentary bot support first offered in version 15, adds a single-player mode to the mod (described as "not very stable"), and tweaks around many of the weapons.

Guides and Walkthroughs

3D Spotlight's Unreal Tournament Tweak Guide has been updated, their tips on getting better performance out of UT is now current through version 425. Also, Deus-Ex.Org's Deus Ex Walkthrough has been updated again, and is now current through mission 3, battery park.

Competitions

The judges picks for the Polycount and id Software's QuakeCon 2000, Quake III Arena modeling contest have been released, here's the press release sent along by id's Paul Jaquays, which mentions that there are still plans to have a public vote on the finalists as well. Also, results of season VI of The United Kingdom Team Fortress Classic League have been posted, with Team Armageddon coming out victorious. Finally, the Nerdfest is accepting sign-ups for this LAN event in Canberra, Australia September 16.

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

  • Gore Picks Lieberman As Running Mate, the announcement that "the moderate Democrat and self-styled moral crusader" will be the US democratic VP candidate. Thanks LoneStar...
  • Dangerous games tame patient fears (ZDNet). "From roaring thunder to rocket fire, psychologists say virtual reality can help conquer all kinds of phobias." Thanks WarPig[doh]...
  • A new version 0.31 of the Europa windows shell is now available. Thanks DemoNews...

Out of the Blue

I guess it just goes to show you should never give up hope, MrsBlue called me to the window yesterday to point out that a mourning dove was once again building a nest in the flowerpot on our fire escape, long after I decided the return of our little feathered family was not in the cards. There's little reason to doubt the nesting is being done by the same pair of doves as last year just based on what I've learned is their tendency to return to the same spots for these things, but I swear I recognize momma dove as well (no, there don't seem to be many ways they can look different). Sorry for going on about this, but again, being a city boy/animal lover, this is as close as I get to having 'nature' outside my window. If you're thinking how loopy I am right about now, you should have seen MrsBlue's expression as I talked to momma dove through the window, welcoming her back, and scolding her for worrying me.

Story of the Day: British Actor Sir Alec Guinness Dies at 86. Thanks Larry.
Bonus Story: Dad lands aircraft in Florida, saves family, after pilot suffers fatal collapse. Like a real-life movie. Thanks Keith.
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