Archived News:

Monday, Aug 21, 2000

Voyager Preview, Movies

PC.IGN has written a new preview of Star Trek: Voyager - Elite Force, based on the latest build of the game they received from Activision. The text is quite complementary, and in addition to a decent write-up of the Voyager experience, there are five new gameplay movies in QuickTime format.

Baldur's Gate II Previews

A massive, hands-on preview of Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn is up at PC.IGN. The preview was written by someone who quite obviously was a fan of the first Baldur's Gate, and it contains his glowing praise of the new engine and gameplay additions, along with plenty of new screenshots. If that's not enough Baldur's Gate for you, don't worry, because 3DGN has written a BG2 Beta Journal, which has five shots and more impressions, and RPG Planet has gone the bulk route, with ten new shots of their own.

Freedom Preview

Also new on PC.IGN this evening, is a new look at Freedom: First Resistance, the upcoming third person action/adventure title from Red Storm. The preview serves as a second look at the game, updating readers with the latest changes to the game since they last saw it at E3, and there are 12 new screenshots as well.

Evening Screenshots

Apologies for missing an afternoon screenshots post, and the resulting size of this one:

Demise Update

Artifact Entertainment has updated their official Demise site with word that thanks to their latest round of funding, they have been able to hire a programmer full-time to work on support for the game. They also say that they have a full list of current bugs, and a patch will be released "shortly." In somewhat related news, The Dr. Twister Network has posted a new Q&A with Artifact's David Allen, talking with him about their massively multiplayer RPG Horizons.

FAKK2 Alpha Patch

Ritual has released a version 1.02a alpha patch for Heavy Metal: F.A.K.K.2, intended to fix "the crash on exit and crash on loading saved game bugs." This is an unsupported release, and it requires the version 1.01 patch to be installed first (story). Thanks, who have a mirror here.

Throne of Darkness Update

Although Sierra sent out a press release announcing this earlier today (jumping the gun slightly), their revamped Throne of Darkness site has gone live. The new site contains plenty of new concept art and screenshots from this upcoming action RPG, as well as details on the game and its developers, Click Entertainment, and a previously available movie trailer.

Codename Eagle Patch

The official Codename Eagle site now offers a patch for this first-person shooter by Refraction Games, fixing a few problems when running the game under Windows 2000. The fix requires the previous v1.33 patch to be installed (story), and word on their FAQ page is that the next update this Fall will include a new map as well as "tools and tutorials as how to build your own levels."

RPG Game Music

RPGDot has posted a new pair of game MP3s, offering you a chance to listen to some game music before the pertaining games are out. First up is a Baldur's Gate II track that will in fact not even appear in BioWare's upcoming RPG in this form, while the other track is the title music of Gorasul: Lost Souls, a role-playing game being crafted by Silver Style.

Giants Movies

Interplay sent along seven movies featuring gameplay from Giants: Citizen Kabuto. The first of them is a full trailer, featuring each of the three playable races (which has been available before), while the others exclusively show off the Meccaryns (including one really fun one that shows how you can kill innocent creatures with a helicopter). We are still experiencing server problems, so while the movies aren't terribly large (they range from six to twelve megs each) you may want to use a program that will resume your download should you be disconnected (such as Download Accelerator, GetRight, GoZilla, etc.).

Fallout: Tactics Interview

Interplay's Brian Christian and Chris Taylor (not to be confused with the Dungeon Siege and Total Annihilation designer) are interviewed on Freelancer, talking about the upcoming isometric squad action title Fallout: Tactics - Brotherhood of Steel. The brief interview covers the genesis of the project, the level design process and more.

ShadowWatch Q&A

Also on Freelancer today is a new Q&A with Red Storm's Kevin Perry. Kevin talks about the inspirations behind their recent adventure title ShadowWatch, along with their reasons for not including a multiplayer component, the research involved for each of the game's various locales and other related topics.

Deus Ex Interview

A new interview with Deus Ex designer Harvey "Witchboy" Smith is up at The questions focus on the game's use of in-game cinematics, with Harvey explaining how they were done, what he felt they did right (and wrong), and what didn't make it into the game.

Soldier of Fortune Gold Q&A

Soldier of Fortune Center has conducted a brief Q&A with Eric Biessman, talking to him about the upcoming Soldier of Fortune Gold add-on. According to Eric, the add-on is complete, and the next patch is in QA testing awaiting final approval. He also says that there is "a strong possibility" of a sequel to the game, although of course, he can't say anything for sure.

On Blair Witch 1 Demo

Gathering of Developers head honcho Mike Wilson updated his .plan with more information on the Blair Witch Volume 1: Rustin Parr demo (see below), and explaining what can be expected from the upcoming trilogy of horror games. Here is what he had to say:
Now that the Blair Witch 1 demo is up on the king of all shooter fan sites... I feel like I should let those know that are intent on downloading it... this is a very early build of what is very much an ADVENTURE game. Very little action at all in BW1. This first episode was done by the Nocturne team at Terminal Reality, and they really focused on the storytelling aspect of the Nocturne tech/world, combining the Nocturne/Spookhouse mtyhos with the Blair mtyhos. It's really cool, if you look at it from an adventure game perspective.

For those of you who get more into the action side of things, BW 2 and 3 will be progressively more action-oriented. This unprecedented experiment has become a very cool collaboration of the three independent studios, and we think gaming fans are going to be treated to a very cool series this fall, each bearing the distinct brand of its developer.
Meanwhile, mirrors of the demo are now available at 3D Gamers and 3DFiles.

New Q3Offline

After a brief hiatus, ShellShock's Crater has released a new build of Q3Offline, the handy utility for configuring single player Quake III Arena botmatches. This new version adds a number of user-requested features, including the ability to make whole teams of the same bot type, and a way to tweak all manner of Q3A options (such as gravity) in addition to bug fixes.

Blair Witch 1 Demo

Early last month, a playable demo of Blair Witch Volume 1: Rustin Parr on FilePlanet came to our attention, but Gathering of Developers told us that this was an early press build, not intended for distribution. Today Stomped found out that the demo is in fact part of the Showtime promo site for the Blair Witch Project, and we confirmed it was released with G.o.D's blessing after all. The demo is billed as an interactive trailer offering ten minutes of gameplay, and comes as 67.1 MB download. G.o.D. also told us there will be no official demo prior to the game's release.

Space Empires Interview

Games Domain has posted a brief interview with Malfador Machinations president Aaron Hall, talking with him about their upcoming turn-based strategy game Space Empires IV, as well as his background in the industry, and the earlier Space Empires games. They also have a preview up, which is based on the demo version of the game.

Valve Interview

Another installment in the series of 3D modelling interviews on In The Trenches is up, this time with Valve's Steve Theodore taking the hotseat. Steve talks about his career and how he ended up at Valve, the tools and techniques he uses, and a few other related topics, including "Ricochet", an official mod for Half-Life he's working on that will feature a similar animation system to the one being used in their internally developed Team Fortress 2 engine.

Incoming Forces Details

New details about Incoming Forces, the sequel to Incoming are up at GA-Strategy, along with four new screenshots. According to the quote they've posted from designer Scott Johnson, the engine supports models containing more than 20,000 polygons each and uses a NURBS based renderer.

Giants Shots

Six new screenshots from PlanetMoon's Giants: Citizen Kabuto are up at GA-Source. The shots all depict the Meccaryn race, and are captured from a Voodoo 5 with full scene anti-aliasing enabled at 1024x768 resolution.

D-I-Y Tomb Raider

Strange though it may seem, despite four releases, Core Design has never released a level editor for Tomb Raider to allow users to make their own maps. Well, according to The Croft Times, this will change with the November release of Tomb Raider Chronicles, the recently unveiled fifth game in the series (story). The version included with the game will be a scaled down editor, and will include tutorials to get would-be level designers used to the tools. Thanks FGN Online for the tip.

Sacrifice Interview

Joby Otero, art director at Shiny on the upcoming 3D strategy title Sacrifice, is interviewed on Joby talks about their inspiration for the unique gameplay in Sacrifice, the game's plotline, those wacky characters, and more. In addition to the interview itself, there is a full, hands-on preview of the game up as well, complete with screenshots galore.

Stars! Preview

A new preview of Stars! Supernova, the enthusiastic turn-based strategy game from Empire Interactive is up at Computer Games Online this morning. The preview is loaded with gameplay details as well as a number of new screenshots and concept art images.

Battlecruiser Millennium Update

The official Battlecruiser Millennium site has been updated with 18 new screenshots from this upcoming space-sim, along with a new song from the game's soundtrack in MP3 format. In addition, the game is featured on Matrox' Enhanced Games page, showing off its use of DualHead technology.

Cossacks Demo

German developer CDV sends word that their official Cossacks: European Wars site is now open for business in both English and German incarnations, and that they have released an (English) demo of the game. Cossacks: European Wars is an isometric real-time strategy game that allows you to relive the battles that took place during the 16th through 18th Centuries in Europe.

Gore Preview & Movie

What is basically the first Gore preview is up at BigKid after some hands-on impressions of this upcoming first-person shooter from 4D Rulers. The chance to check out the game was earned by carelessly bashing it (a behavior some developers seem to encourage by such responses), and the write up gives extensive impressions after first-hand time with the game at a recent barbecue for the release of a publisher's demo of the game. Included with the write-up are several new screenshots, and word that a free multiplayer demo (possibly consisting of much of what they saw at the BBQ) "could" be released soon. Meanwhile, there is a Gore movie on Voodoo Extreme similar to the previously released flick (story) as it was taken from the same build, but also contains some additional "never-been-seen-before" footage. The movie is a 30 MB download.

Morning Screenshots

Loose Cannon Interview

LooseCannonZone interviews Tony Zurovec, discussing his work on their namesake game, Loose Cannon, the upcoming driving combat game from Digital Anvil and Microsoft. The article compiles a bunch of questions and answers that have previously been dribbled out one-at-a-time all in one spot.

Tech Bits

D2F for Q3A

Beta one of DOOMED2FRAG (D2F) for Quake III Arena is now available from End Time Mod Productions. This mod is "designed with the purpose of bringing the adrenaline pumping, visceral experience of DOOM2 Deathmatch to Quake3 with a few nods to features from more recent games." Included in the first beta are seven Doom-style weapons, along with three maps said to work well with the changes. Two more weapon additions are planned for the next release.

Quake WaterVIS ReVISited

The newly-relocated Water VIS page is where you can once again find this site that's dedicated to providing tweaks to allow for transparent water effects in the original Quake, after the page disappeared about a year ago. The new location is just temporary until something more permanent can be worked out. This news comes by way of the old-schoolers at the Quake Info Pool, where, in keeping with what they do, they have posted a few new Quake (1) bug reports and corresponding fixes, along with downloads of the source and binaries (DOSQuake, WinQuake, GLQuake) which fix even more bugs.


Sign-ups for the Arizona LANBashers League's Arizona Challenge 2000 tournament begins this evening at 11:00 PM EDT (8:00 PM PDT). Seating is limited. Also, a post on has the results of the BattleTop pre-qualifying matches in Germany, along with a couple of large packs with demos of the action.

Guides and Walkthroughs

There's a new Deus Ex Tweak Guide on PlanetHardware offers tips on optimizing your system and video and audio subsystems to get both the best performance and optimal visual quality when playing Deus Ex.

The Mod Squads

Fortress Center interviews the Deus Ex Fortress team, discussing their plans for a TeamFortress style mod for Deus Ex (to our knowledge, Myst is the only game currently not undergoing some sort of class-based makeover somewhere). Among other things, the conversation discusses the chore of adding multiplayer play to this single player game, one of the hurdles this project must overcome before completion. Also, there's another short Gooseman Interview on Counter-Strike @ Stomped asking a few questions about plans for beta 7 of Counter-Strike for Half-Life (which is also previewed here in German, translated by Babel Fish). Finally, there are exclusive Resident Unreal shots & interview on Unreality checking out plans for this Unreal mod.

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews


  • The Deckmatch Page has a complete set of rules for Deckmatch, what they call the unofficial Quake III Arena Card Game, which is played with a deck of ordinary playing cards, a pencil, and paper...
  • An update to AGN3D from Jeremy gives the latest status report on his dire medical condition, and also seems to indicate news updates may still be occurring there, at least for a while...
  • The MojoZilla website will be host to a live audio program related to games and the Internet and stuff. The debut installment is tonight at 8:00 PM EDT, and their guest will be Quintin Stone, creator of Gunslinger Quake 2 and the upcoming mod for UT, Night's Edge...

Out of the Blue

We may have a new unofficial position in the works here, as Chris Morris at Well Rounded Entertainment may be on the verge of being declared official Blue's News recaller of Bizzaro Birthdays. After helping us commemorate Donny "Ralph Malph" Most's recent turning of the calendar, Chris points out that today is the birthday of Clarence Williams III, a role model of cool for many of us growing up in the 60s and 70s, as he played the part of Linc Hayes in the Mod Squad (completely offsetting the utter lack of cool his partner Pete was burdened with). Happy birthday Mr. Williams, who turns 61 today (I won't even point out how old that makes me feel). Oddly inspired by a banner I keep seeing, I just checked into something: For the record, The Oracle of Bacon at Virginia reports Clarence Williams III and Donny Most each have a Bacon number of 2. Clarence was in Civility in 1999 with Tom Arnold and Tom was in We Married Margo in 2000 with Kevin Bacon, while Donny was in Edtv in 1999 with Clint Howard and Clint was in My Dog Skip (2000) with Mr. Bacon. I don't know why I'm surprised... Charlie Chaplin only has a bacon number of 3!

Link of the Day: When Good Smurfs Go Bad. a follow-up to the Smurfy link the other day. Thanks Trev.

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