Archived News:

Thursday, Oct 30, 2003

Battlefield 1942 Patch

The eagerly anticipated version 1.5 patch for Battlefield 1942 is now available on EA's FTP Server as an update for version 1.45 or as a patch to update any prior version. There is also a new version 1.5 standalone server as well as a patch to update previous versions. Here are some alternate download locations: The 1.45-1.5 patch (46 MB) can be found on 3D Downloads, 3D Gamers, Boomtown (registration required), FilePlanet (registration required), Filerush, FileShack (registration required),, Gamer's Hell, GameTab, IGN, and Worthplaying. The full version 1.5 patch (144 MB) is on 3D Downloads, 3D Gamers, FilePlanet (registration required), Filerush, FileShack (registration required), Gamer's Hell, GameTab, IGN, and Worthplaying. The standalone Win32 server patch (8 MB) is available from 3D Downloads, 3D Gamers, FilePlanet (registration required), FileShack (registration required), Gamer's Hell, IGN, and Worthplaying. The full Win32 standalone server (105 MB) is on 3D Downloads, 3D Gamers, FilePlanet (registration required), FileShack (registration required), Gamer's Hell, IGN, and Worthplaying. The Linux server was released last night (story). In addition to bug-fixes and other improvements, the update includes the Invasion of the Philippines map.

Horizons December 9

Atari sends word to expect Horizons: Empire of Istaria to appear over the horizon on December 9, as that's when Artifact's MMORPG is now slated to go live. Here's the deal:
LOS ANGELES – Oct. 30, 2003 – Atari and Artifact Entertainment today announced that Horizons: Empire of Istaria will ship to retail outlets nationwide on December 9th. The highly anticipated massively multiplayer online (MMO) role-playing game was previously scheduled to release in November. The extra time will allow Artifact Entertainment to continue to make optimizations and improvements to the game in order to provide one of the most compelling MMO experiences this holiday season. Available for PC CD-ROM, Horizons: Empire of Istaria will allow players to experience online gaming like never before in a single massive online world primed for exploration, brimming with adventure and rife with danger.

“Our decision to do the retail launch of Horizons in December allows us to optimize code, polish our extensive tradeskill system, refine combat, engage new modules of monster artificial intelligence, expand the deep quest system and ensure a stable and fun online experience,” said David Bowman, creative director and co-president, Artifact Entertainment. “I think players will be suitably pleased with the end result as we deliver a world where players have a massive impact on their environment -- a dynamic place where cataclysmic events could change the appearance and function of the world in real time right before your eyes.”

UT2004 in 2004

Though Epic Games' official policy regarding release dates has been "when it's done" since long before Unreal Tournament 2004 was announced, Atari sends along a note acknowledging that they were targeting the UT2003 follow-up for release before the end of this year, but that this goal has slipped. Here's what they have to say:
Atari and Epic Games announced today that the release date for Unreal Tournament 2004, the highly anticipated follow-up to last year's smash Unreal Tournament 2003, has been moved to February 2004.

The game was previously slated for release during the 2003 Holiday season.

BloodRayne 2 Announced has launched (thanks Worthplaying) with the official announcement of plans for a sequel to the vampiric action game for which a movie deal was also recently announced (story), and the press release for the project is also now likewise available. The Flash-only site offers registration for those who wish to receive the trailer for the game when it is released, along with first word on the follow-up:
October 30, 2003 – Acknowledging the Halloween anniversary of the successful launch of its predecessor, Majesco, one of the fastest-growing publishers of interactive entertainment, today announced that BloodRayne 2 will be available in October 2004 for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft, and personal computer.

Activision Acquires Infinity Ward

Activision Acquires Infinity Ward Developer of Critically Acclaimed PC Game Call of Duty(TM) (thanks Frans) has word that the developer of Call of Duty has been acquired, not even 24 hours after its debut title hit store shelves. Activision, which already owns developer Raven Software, exercised its option to acquire the remaining 70% of the company's stock, and have signed principals Grant Collier, Vince Zampella, and Jason West to long-term contracts.

CoD Linux Server Recall

Activision sends word that the Linux Call of Duty dedicated server that became available last night (story) was a beta that was not supposed to be released. Word is there are still some issues to be worked out, and the actual release will not be for at least another week.

Morning Q&As

Demos: School Tycoon & FIFA 2004

Nothing gets a mogul's entrepreneurial juices flowing like a good school. So following that theme, Cat Daddy Games has released a School Tycoon Demo (thanks Frans). A bit of info on the release can be found here, which describes gameplay that actually involves the kids taking over and running their own school. Update: Cat Daddy Games sends along an apologetic note saying they've pulled this demo because it was not yet intended for public release. Also, a new U.S. FIFA Soccer 2004 demo is available on the EA Sports Website, mirrored on Tiscali Games.

Euro Vega$: Make it Big! Patch

This direct link is for a new version 1.1 patch for the European version of Vega$: Make it Big! No details are available about what this addresses. Thanks Frans.

Morning Previews - America's Army 2.0

Chat Logs

The CPL-Gearbox Chat Transcript on The Adrenaline Vault recaps the session with Bungie and Gearbox to discuss the future of Halo. The log is "edited for continuity and clarity." Also, Neverwinter Vault's NWCon Chat Log is an elaborately formatted chat log recapping a chat held at Neverwinter Connections as part of the festivities at NWCon, the community's first online convention for Neverwinter Nights.

Morning Screenshots


Heads to Roll on Nov. 4th When Acclaim Entertainment, Inc. Unleashes 'Gladiator Sword of Vengeance' on Retail (thanks Frans) is the press release announcing that the PS2 and Xbox gladiator game will ship next week. Also, shipping: "Kemco U.S.A. announced today that its much-anticipated title, Rogue OpsTM, has begun shipping to retail outlets nationwide. In the debut adventures of the beautiful but deadly female heroine Nikki Connors, Kemco's Rogue OpsTM provides gamers with an experience never before felt or seen in the 3rd person stealth/action adventure video game genre. Rogue OpsTM is available on the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the Nintendo GameCubeTM and the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft." Meanwhile: "Microsoft® Game Studios announced today that Project Gotham Racing® 2 for Xbox® has gone gold and is scheduled to skid onto store shelves in North America on November 18 for an estimated retail price of $49.99 (U.S.)." There's a Tapwave Zodiac Preview on HomeLAN Fed. Finally, PlayStation cam sells a million (thanks Mike Martinez).

Game Guidance

Vault Hub's Unofficial Wish FAQ is online, taking bits from the official FAQ and adding a couple of other tidbits.

Help Wanted

Blizzard has posted an opening for a Studio Technical Analyst, and are still looking to fill a spot for a Web Designer.

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews


Out of the Blue

After I dropped MrsBlue at the train today a woman in a jeep tried to get both of us hurt by only looking right before making a left turn, which was right into my path, inspiring some screeching brakes to avoid a head-on collision. I honked my horn, to which she turned toward me and screamed curses at me through the closed window.

I heard long ago that a majority of accidents happen in parking lots... I dunno if it's true, but it makes sense. Most people think they are above-average drivers, but not only is it impossible for that to be true, but in reality even average drivers are not really as good at it as they should be, and the added precision required in close quarters just brings this fact to the surface.

Play Time: 3DStressBall.
Link of the Day: Some checkout machines won't read new $20 bill. Thanks Tony!!!
Stories of the Day: Ideas Unlimited, Built to Order (registration required).
Anti-rocket laser cannon gets funding. Thanks David Holland.
CIA exhibits spy gadgets with Bond edge.
Science!: Print yourself a roll of semiconductors?
'Brain itch' keeps songs in the head.
Science agrees Moms courageous, cool. I agree too.
Media of the Day: The End of the World. Thanks Bronco. Contains bad language and bad stereotypes.
Follow-up: Sun blast hurls gas cloud at Earth.
Thanks Mike Martinez.
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