Archived News:

Tuesday, Jan 15, 2002 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Birthday

Farscape Preview

PC.IGN.com has posted a new preview of Farscape, the 3D isometric action adventure based on the popular sci-fi TV series that's in the works at Red Lemon. The article kicks off with a short introduction of the show for those who aren't familiar with it, before describing how the game aims to recreate it, the characters and environments you'll encounter, how the camera system and user interface function, and more. Five new screenshots are also included.

Tuesday Screenshots

  • Homeplanet
    Revolt Games has released three new screenshots of Homeplanet along with two new entries in the ships gallery for their upcoming space combat game, and Shacknews serves up a new pair of screenshots (and two of the aforementioned shots) as well.
  • Medieval
    There are five Medieval: Total War screenshots on Voodoo Extreme, at least one of which has already been available elsewhere, but the others offer some new scenes in the 3D strategy game in the works at Creative Assembly.
  • Neocron
    The Neocron Plaza Gallery on RPG Vault is yet another visual look at the sci-fi MMORPG being beta tested at Reakktor Media.

Call Of Cthulhu Diary

A new Call Of Cthulhu Developer Diary, Part 3 is online at Action Vault, this installment penned by producer Chris Gray on Headfirst Productions' upcoming first-person horror game. This brief installment discusses the trade-off between gameplay and visuals, and how their creation of Core Technology (which can be reused in future projects) and a tool chain helped in that regard.

Deus Ex 2 Interview

Deus Ex 2 Q&A on GameSpot is actually a lengthy conversation on the development of this first-person action RPG by ION Storm, interrogating studio director Warren Spector and project leader Harvey Smith. They talk about their roles on the project, the development phase the game is in now, how it relates to the original ("at the start of Deus Ex 2, 15 years have passed since the end of Deus Ex."), how they aim to expand on the freeform gameplay with new features, enhanced physics and other improvements, how much of the game's technology is new, and the proverbial more. In related news, there's a brief, hands-off Deus Ex 2 preview on ActionTrip which also mentions a tentative Spring 2003 release, but that is already implicitly dismissed by a comment from Warren Spector in the interview ("Completion date? I don't think we're quite ready to talk about that yet."). Here is an excerpt on their decision to forego multiplayer in the game:
GameSpot: Though Deus Ex shipped as a single-player game, Ion Storm released a free multiplayer add-on some months later. How was it received? Will Deus Ex 2 have multiplayer out of the box, and if so, what will it be like?

Warren Spector: The multiplayer patch was well received, if not as widely played as we might have hoped. Everyone who played it and took the time to tell us about his or her experience seemed to appreciate how different the Deus Ex multiplayer experience was from the rest of the multiplayer games out there. And that was our goal, really. We wanted to see if our character and experience differentiating gameplay tools worked as well in a multiplayer setting as in a single-player one, and we got the answer we were hoping for. Having said that, the work involved in creating a genuinely unique multiplayer experience and in supporting a multiplayer community turned out to be...significant...and we need to keep our focus on the single-player experience. There's a petition out there right now asking us to do multiplayer versions of our future games, but I really think we're better off--and players are better served--if we focus on what we do best, which is providing a first-rate, single-player, story-based, character-driven experience.

Disciples II Preview

The Wargamer Previews Disciples II: Dark Prophecy with a look at Strategy First's upcoming follow-up to Disciples: Sacred Lands based on hands-on experience with a preview build. The article discusses the often overlooked joys of turn-based gaming, and goes on to offer impressions of gameplay, describing the impact of the leaderships characteristic, specialized combat, the role of support individuals, movement, quests, and more.

Harbinger Q&A

There's an Interview with Andy Muir 3dzone-bg talking with the 300 lb gorilla on Harbinger, Silverback Entertainment's upcoming action/RPG (thanks medonozka). Topics include some of Andy's and Silverback's background, Harbinger's inspirations, whether any Fallout influence will be evident, enemies, level capping, the in-jokes in some of the character names they've chosen, plans for beta testing, the search for a publisher, future plans, and more. Four new screenshots are also included.

Click Shtick

Tonight's Ben Haas Interview on XGR is their second such conversation with the one-time Blizzard employee and cofounder of Click Entertainment. This is one of their usual audio interviews, set for 9:30 PM EDT tonight, SHOUTcast-compatible media player required. Topics include the reception Throne of Darkness met with, what to expect from the upcoming ToD patch, and what he's prepared to reveal about their yet-untitled upcoming massively multiplayer fighting game.

Fighting Legends Upgrade

Another MMO game is updated today, as the Maximum Charisma Studios website has word of a new patch for Fighting Legends, their massively multiplayer role-playing strategy title. The new version of this upgrade is not defined, but it includes new graphics and interface enhancements along with a handful of bug fixes, and can be applied through the game's auto-updater.

Might and Magic IX Q&A

There's a Might & Magic IX Q&A on FREELANCER where they continue their conversation with Jeff Blattner of New World Computing/3DO, and turn their attention to the next installment in this RPG series. The discussion covers the makeup of the team at work on the game, their objectives, the game's setting, their unique class system, monsters, combat, inventory, the engine, possibilities of a DVD version, and more.

NOLF2 Screenshots

Computer and Video Games sends word of three No One Lives Forever 2 screenshots, of which the third one looks new, the second one familiar, and the first one could just as well be from the PS2 version of No One Lives Forever, going by its smaller size and different user interface. If that sounds like a bad deal, you can however also check out their brief, hands-off preview of Monolith's first-person shooter sequel, which appears to be accompanied by a further three new screenshots.

Ages of Athiria Q&A

There's an Ages of Athiria Interview on GameSpyDaily talking with Tom W DeSanctis of Elysian Productions about Ages of Athiria, to learn why it will not be "just another 'me too' MMORPG." The discussion covers the game's storyline, sagas, skill-based system, the size of the game world, hardware requirements, their broadband connection requirement, the interface, as well as several questions put off for answer in the future.

Dark Age of Camelot Upgrade

A new upgrade for Dark Age of Camelot is now live on the servers of this medieval MMORPG by Mythic Entertainment, updating the game to version 1.42. As usual, the patch is only available via the auto-updater in the game, and the detailed release notes list the changes in this version, which include new class abilities, new bounty points and stores, gameplay tweaks, quest changes, bug fixes, and more. Thanks Aaron Gross for the tip.

Disciples II Gold

Disciples II Goes Gold is the press release from Strategy First with news that Disciples II: Dark Prophecy is gold, and this turn-based strategy sequel to Disciples: Sacred Lands "will be in stores shortly after the ship date on January 24th, 2002." According to the release: "I couldn't be happier with the finished product, " says Pro Sotos, Producer for the Disciples series. "Everyone on this team has worked long and hard to make sure that everything in Disciples II is perfect. This game is so big that we have to ship it with two CDs!" To celebrate the occasion, they sent along a batch of 14 new screenshots.

Dredd Vs. Death, Wardog Screenshots

Rebellion has released new images of Dredd Vs. Death, providing the first visual life signs of their upcoming action game based on the Judge Dredd series of comic books since last Spring. Similarly, there is a new Wardog image gallery, revealing more scenes from their 3D role-playing game based on the 2000AD comic for the first time since last Summer. Both galleries offer a mix of screenshots and concept images, available in medium and high resolutions.

Blackthorn Diary

The second installment in the Ultima Online: Lord Blackthorne’s Revenge Diary on MGON has been posted (tying the race at two with the corresponding GameSpy diaries). The new edition is penned by Thomas "Hanse" Eidson who talks about their crafting system that allows players to learn and practice a trade (fancy shirts, wee!). The journal discusses the system, the way it is introduced in their new player training quest, ways they will motivate skill development, as well as what's being done to increase the appeal of the system to veteran players, balancing the reward system, and more.

Fighting Legends Q&A

HomeLan Fed's Fighting Legends Interview talks with Steven Escalante of Maximum Charisma Studios about Fighting Legends, their massively multiplayer fighting game. Topics include how the game's launch has gone, their reaction to the game's reviews, what they would have done differently at launch, their offer of a full rebate for purchasers of the game, the heavy competition in the MMOG marketplace, problems they have encountered, plans for patches and additional free content, advantages and disadvantages to development without an external publisher, and more.

Tech Bits

  • CES
    There is coverage of this year's Consumer Electronics Show on Target PC and The Tech Zone.
  • New GetRight
    A new version 4.5c of the GetRight download manager is now available.

Consolidation

There is a Prisoner of War Q&A on UK.PlayStation.com talking about progress on this upcoming adventure game set in a PoW camp, though the short Q&A discusses the game in general, rather than specifics about the PS2 version (thanks GameSpyDaily). The Matrix Confirmed for Cube on Planet GameCube has word that Shiny plans on bringing their upcoming game set down the rabbit hole to the GameCube system.

Console Reviews: James Bond - Agent Under Fire (PS2) on Gaming Age, and Final Fantasy X (PS2) on NeoSeeker.

New SavageStats

A new version 1.0.6 of the Savage Stats log parsing utility was released over the weekend. "The new version has Q3DM, Q3 Threewave CCTF games.log support and also a major speed increase in display times," as well as bug fixes, tweaks, and other enhancements.

Game Guidance

The TRIBES 2 Troubleshooting Guide on PlanetTribes is a constantly revised resource based on information found in the TRIBES 2 forums. Also, Unreal Cleaned, home to several Unreal FAQs, has relocated. Finally, the Comanche 4 Frequently Asked Questions has been updated on the occasion of the release of the most recent patch (story).

The Mod Squads

The Skindom Jobs Section is online to allow "game skinners to advertise their skills to find work (free or otherwise), and for companies/clans/mod groups to recruit new members." PlanetQuake3.net interviews V3N0M to discuss the Weapons Factory Arena mod for Q3A. Also, Multi Player Zone Interviews Alex Hammond talking with the leader of the Spatial Fear modification for Unreal Tournament. There are Half-Life Day Of Defeat 2.0 Previews on HomeLan Fed, Vigilante Gamers, and DoDhq. Finally, a new Western Quake³ Website is online.

Game Development & Mods

GameSpot's Updated The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind Preview offers their hands-on impressions of The Elder Scrolls Construction Set editor that is being used to create this upcoming RPG, and will also be included with the game when it ships.

Game Reviews

Other Previews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

Okay, we got this mail thing straightened out. Thanks to those of you who picked up on the temporary address dealie, you can now resume with our original news@bluesnews.com address if you have something to send along. As expected, the hardware reviews section has grown to Brando-esque proportions following the mail outage, but other than that, the dust seems to have been settled, and I think we're pretty well caught up here.

I love a cool gadget as much as the next guy, but generally don't go for high-tech watches. The Android Catapult Watch review on Dan's Data, however, is my kind of watch gadget... definitely low-tech, but its ability to serve as a weapon makes it a sure winner... just be careful you don't put an eye out.

Link of the Day: INDUSTORIOUS CLOCK. Flash required. Thanks Ant.
Story of the Day: The virtual life of a Labour MP describes how James Plaskitt became the platoon commander in Operation Flashpoint. Thanks alnya.
Weird Science: Animal threats to humans studied. Including word on "guard llamas." Thanks Brendan Cassiel Braybrook.
Bonus Story: Burger King cooks up Web rewards. Thanks Mike Martinez.

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