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Blizzards Mess Up

- Shadow @ 7:28 am PST

Once again Blizzard has messed up again. With their release of the Starcraft 1.08 Patch a new bug has poped up and crashes your computer. It happens when morphing a damaged creep colony into a sunken colony. Blizzard says they are aware of the bug and are in the process of fixing that error and a few other. They said they should have a new patch out soon.

Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos E3 Screens!

- Hobbes @ 6:25 am PST

To kick off GameSurge's E3 2001 Expo Coverage, we have quite a few hot and fresh Warcraft III screenies! Check them out here.

Emperor: Battle for Dune Goes Gold

- Hobbes @ 5:29 am PST

Emperor: Battle for Dune is gold GameSpot reports that during an interview with Louis Castle the Westwood Studios co-founder spilled the beans that Emperor: Battle for Dune is gold, and in fact, their upcoming Dune RTS game was completed a few weeks ago, was shipped off to manufacturing on May 16, and is expected to start showing up in stores during the first week of June.

Renegade Screenie

- Hobbes @ 5:28 am PST

Take a look as this beefy screenshot. It makes me want to cry. =]

Damn!

Friday, May 18, 2001

Starcraft: Anticipated Patch 1.08

- Danny @ 11:17 am PST

Hi, I'm Danny and I'll be posting here at GS. Mainly my intrests are RTS games but expect to see some other things to come. My favorite PC company is Blizzard and console is Nintendo. Now for the news.

After waiting over a year for the patch to come out for Starcraft, Blizzard fans finally recieved the biggest update in the favored RTS. These changes include:

Black and White patch... and more

- Thundra @ 9:08 am PST

The guys over at Gamespy (Gamespydaily to be precise) managed to have a little chat with Peter Molyneux at E3 Expo and got some interesting info on the patch and also on some upcoming BW related projects, unveiling a bit of the future of the Black and White series.

The patch will be released next monday, May 21. This first update for Lionhead Studios' first title should bring some "fresh air" to the game. Villagers playing footbal, new spells, new buildings (and tweaks to existing ones) and more accurate dancing movements while using audio CD's in-game will be some of the improvements.

Featuring also:

- A newer version of safedisk to avoid problems with copy protection
- A fix for the multiplayer select screen
- LAN spawn so you only need 1 CD to play a LAN game
- Possibility of skipping the tutorial
- other fixes
The patch should be around 8.5MB. For those that don't have cable, like me :(, ouch!

About projects to come, Peter revealed that two expansion packs are under development: Creature Trials and World Disc. The first to be released sometime in September this year and the other with released date still unannounced. Two expansion packs wich hopefuly will add something new and exciting to the game.

Also confirmed by Molyneux was that Black and White will be coming to Microsoft's next-generation console, XBox.

Finally, I leave here a question that is probably appearing on your inquiring minds:
- Will the patch bring what's been missing in multiplayer?

Starcraft and Brood War v1.08 Patch Available

- Hobbes @ 6:31 am PST

The Starcraft/Brood War v1.08 patch has FINALLY been released after months of controversy and babbling in the Battle.net forums. You can get the patch by connecting to Battle.net, or you can download it here.

Thursday, May 17, 2001

Diablo II Patch v1.06b Now Available

- Hobbes @ 5:57 pm PST

Simply connect to Battle.net to download the patch.

Windows Users: If you have trouble patching from Battle.net, you can also download it here.

Macintosh Users: Blizzard will post the standalone version of this patch on their site as soon as it's available.

For a complete list of changes in the patch, and for more information on the patch, go here.

Wednesday, May 16, 2001

Jedi Knight II

- Hobbes @ 2:10 pm PST

TheForce.net has word that LucasArts has announced that "Star Wars, Jedi Outcast, Jedi Knight II" is being developed by Raven Software using a modified Quake III engine. It is expected out in Spring 2002.

PunkBuster to Detect Asus Driver Cheat

- Hobbes @ 2:09 pm PST

PunkBuster will have a new version of their detection software within the next few days that detects the "cheat" Asus drivers, as well as pass through OpenGL drivers. This will allow Half-Life/CS and other servers to keep more cheaters off their servers. There is also a new client for pre-release testing.

Warcraft III at E3

- Hobbes @ 2:06 pm PST

As if you didn't already know, but GameSpot confirmed today that both Warcraft III and Diablo II: Lord of Destruction will be showing their faces at this years E3 Expo. You can expect loads of new information, previews, and screenshots to hit the internet over the next few weeks. Here at GameSurge we will try to get as much of this information filtered to you as soon as it becomes available.

Diablo and Warcraft II Patches

- Hobbes @ 2:00 pm PST

Providing some support for their older games, Blizzard has released version 1.09 patches for Diablo (not Diablo II) to address some Battle.net issues and revert a change made in the previous version, and also a version 2.02 patch for Warcraft II Battle.net Edition that brings a somewhat larger list of changes and fixes

Duke Nukem Forever Movie Released

- Hobbes @ 1:54 pm PST

The Duke Nukem Forever video has been released a day early on CNNfn! Just select Duke Nukem Forever (PC) from the drop down menu and feast your eyes on some really cool looking eye candy.

Tuesday, May 15, 2001

Hercules 3D Prophet III Ships

- Hobbes @ 6:56 pm PST

Hercules 3D Prophet III has been released to the public in a retail version at a price of 429.99 USD. The 3D Prophet III features nVidia's GeForce3 processor, 64 MB DDR RAM, four dual texturing pipelines, a 200 MHz core speed with the DDR RAM operating at 460 MHz, full support for AGP acceleration, full scene anti-aliasing, TV out, and resolutions up to 2048x1536 in 16 million colors performed with a 350 MHz RAMDAC.

Tribes 2 Q&A

- Hobbes @ 6:54 pm PST

This is a little late, but MoreGaming has posted a Q&A with Daryl Nichols, associate producer for Tribes 2 at Dynamix. They talk about difficult portions to make in the game, patches, and community features. Nothing exciting, but something you might use to fill your day.

3DO's Playstation 2 Plans

- Hobbes @ 6:49 pm PST

3DO today revealed two new PlayStation2 games: Jonny Moseley Mad Trix and Dragon Wars of Might and Magic. Dragon Wars is a aerial-based adventure game set in the Might and Magic universe. Players take control of a dragon named Cael as he battles his enslavers, the Orcs. Players will be able to do 20 arial maneuvers and use 32 unique dragon attacks as the play through 16 single player levels. Players can also play coop and DM style matches online. Look for it this fall.

Jonny Moseley Mad Trix is an extreme skiing game that lets players take on the persona of professional skiers, Jonny Moseley or Tanner Hall. Players can do a variety of tricks on man-made Slopestyle courses featuring half-pipes, quarter-pipes, kickers, picnic tables, big air ramps, and rails. Rack up enough points (Tony Hawk style) and you can try out Big Mountain mode. Big Mountain mode lets players star in their own skiing movie, which is played out in a variety of wacky areas -- which can then be played back. Look for this game to hit retail this fall as well.

E3 Tomorrow

- Hobbes @ 6:48 pm PST

It's nearly time for the massive gaming demon that is E3 to begin. The Nintendo GameCube is being unveiled for the first time in the US, as well as some cool Game Boy Advance stuff, and Sony will no doubt be pulling some large news out of the bag. GameSurge will be on on top of all the E3 news, so check back daily for the latest happenings!

Civilization III Preview

- Hobbes @ 6:45 pm PST

After a slight delay, a new Civilization III preview is now online at GameSpot, looking ahead to the turn-based strategy sequel under construction at Firaxis. While the accompanying screenshots have already appeared elsewhere before, the article itself offers a detailed overview of the game's premise and features, the improvements and changes being made over its predecessors, and more, all underlined with quotes galore from Firaxis president Jeff Briggs.

Roboforge Review

- Falcon @ 3:02 pm PST

LITTLEWHITEDOG.COM has just finished a new review of Liquid Edge Games Roboforge. Are you tired of all the FPS and Real-Time Strategy games on the market today? Roboforge brings a new twist to an old concept, by incorporating today's latest programming language and high-tech graphics options. If you're into BattleBots then have a look at what the dogs think of Roboforge.

"

Even though I suck big time at creating robots, I found myself returning every night to RoboForge in an effort to create a better machine. The graphics are more than good enough for this type of game and the match play-back looks pretty cool, especially when your opponent explodes from a wicked attack. The interface was very intuitive and easy to learn. I was very impressed with the speed and overall compatibility and since a Linux version is in the works, RoboForge will surely be a hit with the penguin heads.."

Kohan's Royal Rumble Tournament

- Falcon @ 3:01 pm PST

TimeGate Studios announces the Royal Rumble Tournament!
Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns

HOUSTON, TEXAS - May 15, 2001 - TimeGate Studios, Inc.
(www.timegatestudios.com) announces that they are now accepting applications for entry into Royal Rumble, a single-elimination team tournament to determine the master team strategists of Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns.
Players will pair up to form one team who will then challenge competing teams in grueling battles until the final overall winning pair is announced.

The Royal Rumble winners will need to utilize teamwork and the most complementary use of strategy in order to come out on top. Onwww.kohan.net, teams will be able to view the entire tournament bracket, view the official rules, check out the prizes, and download final round game films!

"Since its release, we have noticed that the most addictive aspect of Kohan is team-based multiplayer" says Adel Chaveleh, Producer of TimeGate Studios. "Royal Rumble gives players the opportunity to challenge each other in a tournament setting, bringing out the competitive nature of players even more and showing our continued support for the product."

Registration for Royal Rumble is from May 9th to June 4th 2001. Competition will begin on June 8th and will last until a winning team has been determined. Prizes include great audio hardware sponsored Creative Labs as well as fantasy memorabilia the Kohan player is sure to enjoy.

About Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns:
Praised as a potential "Game of the Year," this fantasy real-time strategy game is sure to appeal to a large market of gamers because of its unique blending of different game play styles. While adhering to some of the basics of traditional RTS style games, Kohan's distinctive economy model eliminates the need for micro-management of resources, leaving the player with more time for strategic combat. Kohan will also appeal to the tactical wargamer with its company based combat system and use of military concepts such as formations, visual range, supply range and morale. Not only will the more strategic and tactical players enjoy the game, but RPG gamers will also feel at home with the game's gripping storyline and role-playing elements, such as experience for heroes and units, and heroes being carried over from one mission to another. The land of Khaldun is a lush and visually stunning fantasy setting where dragons, spells, and epic battles are commonplace.

The player takes on the role of an immortal being belonging to the race known as the Kohan. The Kohan were once the ruling power of the world, but
were wiped out in a series of massive cataclysms. They did not die an eternal death though, and have since been reborn and reawakened in a new world, unlike the one they once knew. They must come to grips with their
past glory, their present hardship, and their future destiny. The player must try to solve the mystery of his race's destruction and attempt to return the Kohan to their rightful glory. Visit the official game page,
www.kohan.net.

Counter-Strike Drama

- Falcon @ 2:58 pm PST

Today, Actiontrip has prepared for you a Counter-Strike Drama. A touching story of two young terrorists trapped in a house in Italy. Kinda like Bonnie and Clyde, only a lot more "emotionally profound".


It's a fun little story, in the Actiontrip humour style.

Sierra E3 Lineup

- Falcon @ 2:56 pm PST

Bellevue, WA (May 15, 2001) - Sierra On-Line announced today a varied and exciting lineup of titles to be showcased at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles, South Hall booth #1100 from May 17th - 19th. Sierra will present a slate of ten groundbreaking titles on the show floor and one game behind closed doors.

The lineup includes both PC and next-generation console games. PC games include, Empire Earth(tm), Arcanum(tm), Throne of Darkness(tm), Half-Life(r): Blue Shift as well as games that fall under the recently-announced worldwide co-publishing agreement with Fox Interactive, Aliens vs. Predator(tm) 2, and Die Hard: Nakatomi Plaza(tm).
Next-generation console gamers will be treated to such award-winning franchises as Half-Life(r), Tribes(tm) and No One Lives Forever(tm) soon-to-be released on PlayStation(r)2 computer entertainment system. On the Xbox(tm) video game system, Microsoft's future-generation video game console will be Jonny Drama(tm), a completely original title developed exclusively for the platform. Finally, the newly announced game based on J.R.R. Tolkien's worldwide best-selling novel The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, will make its debut on the Xbox behind closed doors.

"Our 2001 E3 line-up, more than ever before, reflects how we are continuing to raise the bar for cutting-edge action, role-playing and strategy games," commented Barbara Schwabe, vice-president of marketing for Sierra. "We've worked very hard to set the stage with our strategic move into the console arena and we're very pleased with the caliber of games we're bringing to next-generation gamers everywhere."

SIERRA'S E3 TITLE LINEUP:

ALIENS VS. PREDATOR 2:
This is the PC sequel to the most terrifying PC game of 1999. Based on the combination of the most highly successful sci-fi franchises in movie history, AVP 2 takes players to a world where species battle species in the ultimate game of survival. Aliens vs. Predator 2 is being developed by Monolith Productions on the PC.

ARCANUM: OF STEAMWORKS AND MAGICK OBSCURA:
Arcanum(tm): Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura is a new PC role-playing game from Troika Games, founded by key members from the development team behind the award-winning role-playing game, Fallout(r)*. Named for the world it is set in, Arcanum opens in an age where magic and technology coexist in uneasy balance. An industrial revolution has swept across the fantasy realm of Arcanum, and players must choose their path - magic or technology - in their quest across the massive world.

DIE HARD: NAKATOMI PLAZA:
Die Hard: Nakatomi Plaza combines all the exciting elements of the original Die Hard movie in an action/adventure game set in the 3D environment of
Nakatomi Plaza. With 40 floors of new office space under construction, John McClane must navigate his way through terrorists, civilians and hostages to
save himself and his wife from the terrorists who have this high rise of horror under siege. It is being developed by Pirhana Games for the PC.

EMPIRE EARTH:
Empire Earth is the debut title from Stainless Steel Studios, but not the first for company founder Rick Goodman, who was lead designer for the best-selling and critically acclaimed strategy game Age of Empires(r). In Empire Earth, gamers attempt to dominate the Earth in land, sea, and air battles, while advancing their civilizations through over 500,000 years of "history," from the Paleolithic age to the 24th century. Empire Earth lets gamers carry out a night attack with a column of Patton's tanks, command
French Grenadiers in the Napoleonic Wars, send Alexander the Great and an army of phalanxes to raze a troublesome city-state, and much, much more.

FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING:
In development by Seattle-based WXP, Inc., The Fellowship of the Ring will be released in early 2002 for the Xbox video game system. The Fellowship of the Ring is a third-person action/adventure game set in the world of Middle-Earth. In the game, players take the persona of Frodo Baggins, an unassuming hobbit who has been unwittingly thrust into a battle between good
and evil. J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings have set the standard for fantasy writers and creators of epic worlds. The novels are massive best sellers, having sold close to 100 million copies worldwide and been translated into 26 different languages.

HALF-LIFE: BLUE SHIFT:
Blue Shift is an all-new single player episode surrounding the Black Mesa security guard introduced in Valve's classic action thriller, Half-Life. In
development on PC by Gearbox Software, creators of the critically acclaimed Half-Life: Opposing Force(tm), Blue Shift also contains the Half-Life HD
Pack, which automatically upgrades the weapons and characters of all the ames in the Half-Life saga with new high definition content.

HALF-LIFE PLAYSTATION 2:
The best first-person shooter of all time comes to the PlayStation 2. Half-Life combines great storytelling with intense action and advanced technology to create the greatest action experience of all time. Originally created for the PC by Valve, this legendary 3D action thriller is coming to PlayStation 2, developed by Gearbox Software. This time around, gamers will get Half-Life's classic Deathmatch for 2-4 players and an exclusive, brand new cooperative campaign, Half-Life: Decay, to take on solo or with a friend.

JONNY DRAMA:
As Jonny Drama, movie star turned secret agent, players must stop the evil Dr. Bumbershoot from executing his sinister plan to destroy the world. In true secret agent fashion, Jonny must use his arsenal of spy gadgets, disguises and vehicles to defeat his arch nemesis and discover the truth about his own forgotten past. Featuring a patent pending real-time animation engine and proven gameplay features, Jonny Drama is sure to be a hit with Xbox gamers of all ages.

NO ONE LIVES FOREVER:
In development on PlayStation 2, this game will feature four new prequel levels highlighting beautiful Agent Cate Archer in her younger days as a thief. Recently, the PC game was honored as PC Game of the Year and PC Action Game of the Year. No One Lives Forever is being developed by Monolith Productions and will debut on PlayStation 2 this year.

THRONE OF DARKNESS:
Japanese mythology and fast-paced multiplayer mayhem combine to make Throne of Darkness(tm) a must-have title for action-oriented role-playing fans.
This inaugural game from Click Entertainment, a group of 24 veteran game designers, takes the action/RPG model pioneered by Blizzard Entertainment's Diablo(r) game into a new direction with a unique storyline and
ground-breaking multiplayer capability.

TRIBES PLAYSTATION 2:
In development by Inevitable Entertainment, the highly anticipated Tribes 2(tm) PC game, sequel to the 1999 Online Game of the Year, is coming to the PlayStation 2. Unlike other shooters, Tribes for the PlayStation 2 brings true team multiplayer action to the PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system for the first time, and delivers a 3D action experience that makes traditional action gaming seem stale and flat. Gamers will indulge in some of the most exciting gameplay available today, from firing up jetpacks to go vertical, engaging in aerial combat, jetting over massive canyons and daunting mountain ranges to deliver mayhem from above.

Interview with Daryl Nichols

- Falcon @ 2:52 pm PST

MoreGaming.com has just posted a interview with Daryl Nichols who is the Associate Producer for Tribes2, check out the interview here:
Greg: Is there anything that you want to say to the public regards the release of Tribes2?

Daryl: We can only make a good game. It is the Tribes 2 community and their support that will make Tribes 2 a great game. On behalf of the entire DEV team I would like to thank you, the community, for your support of Tribes and Tribes 2. It is going to be very exciting to see where you take our creation

CPL Changes Gears

- Falcon @ 6:38 am PST

CPL Press Center has issued the following press release:

CPL Changes Gears

The Cyberathlete Professional League today announced the cancellation of August's Counter-Strike Tournament and October's Quake III Arena Tournament. With the exception of a yearly charity event, the CPL will now only hold a minimum of two large-scale tournaments a year with cash purses of at least $150,000 each. This revised approach to competitive gaming in the United States promises to yield stronger growth for the CPL through consolidated efforts.

The CPL World Championship Event will be held on December 6 - December 9, 2001, offering a record-sized tournament cash purse of $150,000 and will accommodate up to 2,100 people. 96 Counter-Strike teams from around the globe will compete in Dallas, Texas to represent their country and themselves in this nation-based competition. While medals will be awarded to the top teams by country, the cash purse will be distributed according to a team's true placement among peers, regardless of nationality. The registration for the CPL World Championship Event will begin on Friday, June 1st, 2001 at 8:00 PM CST.

The CPL welcomes LAN organizations worldwide to hold Qualifier tournaments and offer one of the World Championship's 32 auto-berth positions to its regional winner. LAN organizations and centers must apply with the CPL Commissioner to obtain one of the 32 auto-berths. Additionally, the BYOC Counter-Strike Tournament to be held at the upcoming CPL 4-Year Anniversary Charity Event will offer three auto-berths to the top place finishers. Registration for the CPL 4-Year Anniversary Event closes on June 1st at 5:00 PM CST.

While the CPL has not solidified its choices for the game platforms of 2002, the league's enthusiasm for the Counter-Strike platform merits a promise for a repeat of this year's World Championship Event using the same game. Managing directors from the CPL worldwide divisions will meet in Dallas, Texas on June 28th to discuss the viability of other game platforms both old and new.

Design a golf course

- Falcon @ 6:34 am PST

MICROSOFT AND GOLF DIGEST CHALLENGE CONTESTANTS TO DESIGN NEXT GOLF COURSE MASTERPIECE

Winner of Course Design Contest to Play Golf With PGA Star Sergio Garcia

REDMOND, Wash. - May 14, 2001 - Microsoft Corp. today announced it is collaborating with Golf Digest magazine to offer consumers the opportunity to experience the wonders of golf course design in the Microsoft® "Links® 2001" Digital Armchair Architect Contest*. Through this contest, consumers can see if they have what it takes to design a winning golf course.

Contestants are challenged to design an original golf course using the Arnold Palmer Course Designer software included in Microsoft's best-selling golf simulation for the PC, "Links 2001." The Grand Prize winners will receive the golf experience of a lifetime, including the opportunity to go head-to-head with PGA star Sergio Garcia on the golf course they design as well as on a real course.

The Digital Armchair Architect Contest, which begins May 15, requires course designers to initially upload three "JPEG-format" screen shots to the contest's registration site, http://www.armchairarchitect.com/, by no later than Aug. 31, 2001. They can submit their design in one of two categories: 18-hole course or 3-hole course.

Ten finalists in each category will be chosen by an expert panel of judges that will include Michael J. Hurdzan, a golf course architect with 25 years of experience, and pro golfer Sergio Garcia. The judging panel will evaluate the courses according to three main criteria: real-life architecture principles, the fun factor and playability, and mastery of the course designer software tools. Selected finalists will then submit their entire course for judging. Winners will be announced in October 2001.

The winner of the 18-hole contest will receive an all-expense-paid trip for two to play head-to-head against PGA pro Sergio Garcia on nine holes of the designed course followed by nine holes on an actual golf course. In addition, he or she will also receive tickets to a PGA Tour event. The runner-up in this category will win an all-expense-paid trip to visit a golf course in construction, followed by a game of 18 holes against course architect Hurdzan in Columbus, Ohio.

"I am thrilled to be a part of the judging panel reviewing the course designs in the Digital Armchair Architect Contest," Garcia said. "The course design software in 'Links 2001' is so comprehensive, designers will be amazed at the resources they have at their fingertips. As an avid player of 'Links 2001,' I am looking forward to playing the winner of the contest on her or his very own course."

The course designer who submits the best 3-hole course design will be treated to greens fees and one-night's accommodations at one of the country's best golf courses. Remaining prizes in the 3-hole category include Golf Digest daily passes to the 2002 U.S. Open in Bethpage, N.Y.

"Every golfer we know is a closet course designer," said Bob Carney, vice president creative director at The Golf Digest Co. "This new software makes it simple for any golfer, virtual or on-course, to be a golf course architect."

Sierra and Alpine Ink Deal

- Falcon @ 6:33 am PST

SIERRA AND ALPINE INK DEAL FOR UPCOMING NEXT-GENERATION CONSOLE GAMES

Bellevue, WA - Sierra announced a strategic partnership with Utah-based Alpine Studios to develop upcoming console games for Sierra. This new relationship further establishes Sierra's commitment to providing gamers with the highest quality next generation console titles.
"Alpine's team consists of some of the most seasoned, experienced professionals in the gaming industry," says Justin Kubiak, senior marketing manager at Sierra. "Les Pardew, CEO of Alpine, is one of the industry's preeminent developers and we're thrilled to be working with him."

"Partnering with a company like Sierra that continues to produce one blockbuster hit after another is crucial to a successful launch for Alpine," says Les Pardew, CEO of Alpine. "Working together, Alpine is poised to make a tremendous impact on the gaming community."

Alpine Studios combines talents from gaming veterans who have worked on projects spanning a variety of genres and platforms. Pardew alone has had his artwork appear in more than 80 video games and has overseen the development of titles such as Rainbow Six for Nintendo 64 and MLS ESPN Gamenight for the Playstation. Together with Lynn Freeman, who has more than 15 years experience and has worked on titles including Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2000 for Game Boy Color and NHL Breakaway 98 for the Playstation, Pardew
leads a team of skilled veteran game developers with more than 70 years combined experience.

Alpine Studios, Inc., a Salt Lake City, Utah-based corporation, was formed in 2000. The company's objective is to create the very best games, while maintaining the highest moral and ethical standards in their products. For more information, visit Alpine Studios' website at www.alpinestudios.com.

First original XBox game

- Falcon @ 6:31 am PST

SIERRA ANNOUNCES FIRST ORIGINAL XBOX GAME Jonny Drama to Save the World Exclusively on Microsoft's Xbox Video Game System

BELLEVUE, WA (May 14, 2001) - Sierra(tm) announced today Jonny Drama , its first title to be developed exclusively
for the Xbox(tm) video game system from Microsoft. Custom created for the soon-to-be released games platform, Jonny Drama is a stealth-shooter action
title set in a unique 3D cartoon environment. Jonny Drama takes a new approach to action games by combining the excitement and intrigue of classic spy movies with hip, retro style to create a refreshingly new gaming experience. Jonny is set to save the world later this year.

"Sierra has a proven track record of publishing some of the most exciting and creative games in the market," said J Allard, general manager for the Xbox platform at Microsoft. "We're excited about our partnership and believe Sierra will be able to leverage the power of Xbox to create a game that is
truly superior in its category."

"The technologic innovations of Xbox allow Jonny Drama to offer gamers an extraordinary gaming experience in a real-time cartoon world," says Steven Hill, senior producer at Sierra. "We're able to create astonishing cartoon special effects with shading and line rendering. As well, DirectMusic enables dynamically changing audio feedback that's reactive to gameplay, so
the music is unique to every situation."

As Jonny Drama, movie star turned secret agent, players must stop the evil Dr. Bumbershoot from executing his sinister plan to destroy the world. In true secret agent fashion, Jonny must use his arsenal of spy gadgets, disguises, and vehicles to defeat his arch nemesis and discover the truth about his own forgotten past.

Jonny Drama is all of the fast-paced action of a shooter, without the gore. The single player game will combine fast-paced stealth action and challenging puzzle-solving adventures within a unique real-time 3D world. The multiplayer lets gamers battle head-to-head, offering several different choices of characters and vehicles. Gameplay places emphasis on the player's skills rather than their knowledge of the level layouts.

New eSports-America.com Content

- Falcon @ 6:29 am PST

The following have recently been published on http://www.eSports-America.com


Interview with Cyberathlete Amateur League Q3-CTF Division Admins:

"eSports: Thanks a lot for your time spent, guys. Do you have any closing remarks or comments to make?

[44]minotaur: The All Star match East vs West will happen the week after regular season, and playoffs start the week after that. Details for both are not 100% at this time, and I would like to credit pack from dv8 with the suggestion of the All Star match.

eSports: Could we get a bit of info on the format of the allstar game? How many teams will take part, how players will be decided, etc?

[44]minotaur: ok.. as of right now, the plan is each team leader will vote for 6 players from their conference (3 offense, 3 defense, no one from their team may be selected) and we take the 3 most popular offense, and 3 defense for each conference and place them in a 4v4 match, not sure on amount of games or servers. Chemistry for the team is important, so I imagine each west and east team will get together and work on some strategy. :)"

Steel Soldiers Interview plus more

- Falcon @ 6:27 am PST

An interview with Abby Hains about The Bitmap Brothers' new title Z: Steel Soldiers.


Also, there is today's announcement about RealArcade and GameSpy.net to images of Sierra's new Xbox title - Jonny Drama:

New Betting Tool for Online Gamers

- Falcon @ 6:26 am PST

The Zootec Group Launches Zoogi ­ a New Betting Tool for Online Gamers

Amsterdam, The Netherlands. May 14, 2001. The Zootec Group today launched its flagship product Zoogi - an online betting platform that allows people to play any game on any site or network with their buddies for real money. Zoogi is a virtual meeting room, independent of any game site, where online game players can play against each other for real money while conversing and collaborating using instant messaging and chat communication. Zoogi was announced following extensive field tests with the participation of avid online game players, proving the Zoogi concept that people are willing to put their money where their mouth is and place one-on-one bets on skills based games.

“Zoogi is changing the way online games are being played. It is an asset to different kinds of game sites and networks, offering a new source of traffic, increased site and game stickiness, and most importantly a non-advertising based business model that works” said Michael Gutman, founder of Zootec.

“We are currently in ongoing discussions with numerous game sites and publishers to facilitate their own users to play skills-based games for real money against each other," added Gutman.

By using a pre-paid or credit card, players can deposit money into Zoogi, agree on a wager, and play the game at any site they agree on. When the game is over, the players declare, through Zoogi, who won and the winnings are transferred to the appropriate player. Each player can see, on his own Zoogi, how much he has earned, how much he can withdraw, and how much he has available for playing. Zoogi simulates a real world game-playing environment, using a numerical rating system (ranging from 1200 to 2500 points) according to skill, as well as its own credibility ranking as an indicator of a player’s trustworthiness for real money games.

About Zootec
Founded in 1999, Zootec B.V designs, develops and markets technologies and solutions for the online gaming community. Zootec is headquartered in the Netherlands and has an R&D facility based in Ramat Gan, Israel. Zootec is backed by venture capital firm eXseed Technology Investments and private European investors.
For more information, please visit Zootec’s website at www.zootec.com or Zoogi’s website at www.zoogi.com.

Sunday, May 13, 2001

nVidia 12.20 Detonator Drivers

- Hobbes @ 6:26 pm PST

The-Ctrl-Alt-Del has posted the latest LEAKED nVidia Detonator drivers for the nVidia using people to check out. The 12.20 Detonator download comes in Win9x, NT 4, and Windows 2000 flavors. Your mileage may vary and caution is recommended as usual. You can see what others have found with these drivers and of course feel free to post your own findings in our comments.

Excalibur Announced

- Hobbes @ 6:23 pm PST

Australian developers Auran have announced Excalibur, a third-person action game for the PC that is set in an Arthurian world. Excalibur promises a combination of range battles, melee fighting and magical combat in an extensive solo campaign and fast online battles. Gamers will chose a hero or heroine, then wield swords, maces, axes and other medieval weapons, fire range weapons such as the long bow and the crossbow, and cast spells to help friends or hinder enemies. Some of the possibilities for fun sound cool in and of themselves: People will be able to shoot huge catapults, ram castle gates, pour boiling oil over foes and morph into strange beasts. The minimum machine specs are expected to be a Pentium III 600, 128 MB RAM and a GeForce 1 or equivalent. Other titles in development at Auran include Trainz and Project Harn. Here are some of the first Excalibur screenshots (thanks to AVault):

Excalibur Screenshot Excalibur Screenshot Excalibur Screenshot

Playstation 2 E3 Listings

- Hobbes @ 6:17 pm PST

PlanetPS2 has written up a complete list of all the PlayStation 2 games that will be appearing at this years' E3. Check it out to see the new games that will be on the market soon.

Having Problems with Worms World?

- Hobbes @ 6:16 pm PST

If you are indeed having problems with Worms World Party then Team17 has come to the rescue. Team17 has updated the technical support guide, so if you are having problems, it would be worthwhile to take a peek!

Battle Realms Movie

- Hobbes @ 6:14 pm PST

Liquid Entertainment has recently released a new movie trailer of Battle Realms (Flash needed), showing off their upcoming 3D real-time strategy game set in medieval Asia. To download the 8.9 MB movie you first need to select the Dragon Clan entry from the scroll bar in the Explore section, and this movie features over two minutes of in-game and concept footage in AVI format illustrating, naturally, the Dragon Clan in the game.

Dark Age of Camelot Interview

- Hobbes @ 6:13 pm PST

VE has done an interview with Mark Jacobs and Matt Firor of Mythic Entertainment about Dark Age of Camelot, their upcoming MMORPG. The conversation is illustrated by a batch of screenshots, and offers both introductory information and more elaborate detail for those already familiar with some of what's planned for DAoC.

Saturday, May 12, 2001

Diablo II: Lord of Destruction Preview

- Hobbes @ 8:09 pm PST

The folks over at PC.IGN are participating in Blizzard's Diablo II: Lord of Destruction beta test, and so it's no surprise that they have posted a preview of it today. The preview contains their impressions of the expansion, along with details on what it adds to the original game. Naturally there are plenty of screenshots here showing off all the new stuff.

Diablo II Ladder Updates

- Hobbes @ 8:06 pm PST

Blizzard's Battle.net news page has just been updated with an announcement that there will be a scheduled reset of both the Diablo II Standard and Hardcore Ladders in late June. This announcement doesn't apply to the Asia 2 Ladders though.
Diablo II Standard and Hardcore Ladders will be reset in late June signifying the start of the new season. At that time, all characters currently on those ladders will be removed. If you wish to be on the new season’s Diablo II Standard or Hardcore Ladder you will have to create a new character following the reset. The Diablo II Ladder reset will not otherwise affect any existing characters and no characters will be deleted. The Battle.net web site will list the top 10 Ladder players on each ladder for each Realm. The new Ladder season does not have a final ending date. We will provide an exact date for the ladder reset as we get closer to the end of June.

Rogue Squadron II Movies

- Hobbes @ 8:03 pm PST

Cube.IGN has released some actual game footage from Star Wars: Rogue Squadron II, a new insta-money-making Lucas title that is supposed to hit Nintendo's new gaming console. It's been said that the Star Destroyers in this game are supposed to feature around 130,000 polygons!

Thursday, May 10, 2001

Tecmo Puts You Into the Game!

- Falcon @ 5:52 am PST

TECMO¹S MONSTER RANCHER 3 FIRST GAME TO UTILIZE REVOLUTIONARY PICTUREPARADISE TECHNOLOGY

TORRANCE, Calif., May 9, 2001 ­ Tecmo, Inc.¹s Monster Rancher 3, the monster breeding and battling game for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, will be the first U.S. title to feature Sony Electronics¹ PictureParadise technology. This state-of-the-art software comes built into the game and allows the player to take an existing image from a Sony digital camera or camcorder and import it into Monster Rancher
3 via the standard USB cable.

"In Monster Rancher 3, we are giving players a wealth of options in order to customize their monster. You can now personalize your virtual pet by decking it out with your choice of clothing, jewelry or other accessories.
The ultimate in customization, however, is being able to take a real-life picture and carry that into the world of Monster Rancher 3. Tecmo pioneers the way for others by being the first to offer this new technology to gamers," said John Inada, marketing director at Tecmo, Inc.

Monster Rancher 3 is the latest installment in the popular game series which lets players breed, train and fight with monsters they control. New monsters are bred by pairing two existing ones or spawned from music CD¹s, movie DVD¹s or game discs. Players train and care for their monsters, much like a virtual pet. Later, they enroll their monsters into tournaments, where they battle for prizes and fame. The Monster Rancher series has sold over 2.5 million copies worldwide and has spawned a hit television cartoon
series.

"We are excited that Tecmo has become an early adopter of our PictureParadise technology," said Takashi Kondo, senior vice president - Sony Digital Imaging Product Division. "PictureParadise brings a whole new dimension to the world of game personalization, and this is only the beginning. While PictureParadise is currently compatible with any Sony imaging device that has USB connectivity, we would eventually like to expand its use to other imaging devices and game consoles, even those that do not carry the Sony name."

New Senior Management for Sierra

- Falcon @ 5:50 am PST

SIERRA ANNOUNCES NEW SENIOR MANAGEMENT TEAM

THOMAS K. HERNQUIST TO JOIN AS PRESIDENT & CEO; MICHAEL A. RYDER NAMED COO AND SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT OF PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT

Bellevue, WA, May 9, 2001 - Sierra On-Line, Inc., a division of Vivendi Universal Publishing (VU Publishing), announced today the addition of two seasoned executives to its management team.

Thomas K. Hernquist has joined the company as President & CEO, reporting to Vivendi Universal Games CEO Hubert Joly.

A seasoned executive from the consumer packaged goods business, Hernquist joins Sierra after four years with Nabisco, where, as Senior Vice President of Marketing, he was responsible for the company's $4 billion flagship retail cookie and cracker business. Hernquist previously served as Vice President of Marketing for Nabisco's Lifesavers division, where he was responsible for its $600 million confections business. Prior to Nabisco, Hernquist held a variety of senior management positions at CPC International, where he was Vice President & General Manager for the $400 million Entenmanns' Northeast Cake business, and Frito-Lay. Hernquist is a graduate of the University of Virginia and has an M.B.A from Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College.

"I am looking forward to working with the creative team at Sierra," said Hernquist. They have a reputation for making fantastic games and I'm excited to be given this opportunity to build on that reputation and grow Sierra's family of brands."


Michael A. Ryder has joined Sierra as COO and Senior Vice President of Product Development, reporting to Tom Hernquist. Ryder most recently was the CEO of SOCO Corp., a software development company targeted at the next-generation mobile online market. Prior to SOCO, Ryder held the position of Vice President and General Manager for Electronic Arts' Seattle organization and was also Senior Vice President and General Manager for the largest publishing unit within GT Interactive Software, Inc. Prior to its acquisition by GT, Ryder was co-founder and CEO of SingleTrac Entertainment Technologies, one of the premiere developers on the Playstation. Ryder has a B.S. in Mathematics from the United States Naval Academy and an M.B.A from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota.

"Sierra has had a long and well-respected place in the interactive entertainment industry, with a particular strength in developing great games for the PC," said Ryder. "I see a great opportunity to extend Sierra's strengths into the next-generation console marketplace, while continuing to capture the excitement of gamers and consumers all over the world."

"The strengths of these two leaders along with the talent and skills we have within Sierra create a very powerful combination," said Hubert Joly, CEO of Vivendi Universal Games. "Together, they will be responsible for expanding Sierra's success across platforms, toward what is increasingly a mass
market, and internationally."

Thursday, May 10, 2001

P4® CPU CPL Holland Tourney PC's

- Falcon @ 11:29 pm PST

CPL Europe has issued the following press release:

Pentium 4® processor CPL Holland Tourney PC's

CPL Europe is happy to announce the high end tourney PC's for the upcoming Pentium 4® processor CPL Holland which is just two days to go:

- Intel Pentium® 4, 1.7 GHz
- 128 MB RDRAM PC 800
- Harddrive 20 gigabyte
- CD-Rom 48x
- Network card: 10/100 3com
- Graphic card: ELSA Gladiac Ultra (Geforce 2 Ultra) 64 MB DDR Ram
- Soundblaster Creative 64

The high end systems with high speed graphics cards, processors and RAM will allow the best gamers to play on the fastest hardware available.

Necrocide Interview and screenshots

- Falcon @ 11:25 pm PST

Stomped chats with Novalogic producer Wallace Wachi as he talks about their upcoming first person horror action game Necrocide. They also have two new screenshots from the game. Check out the exclusive interview and screenshots at http://www.stomped.com/published/jcal989420774_1_1.html

The Future of Strategy Gaming

- Falcon @ 11:25 pm PST

StrategyPlanet takes a brief look at the future of strategy gaming. Check out the article here.
Many would say that where we are right now is where RTS developers are going to stop. There are no more things to invent, or innovative ideas that will come along. "The only things to do are to add more units and techs, and support more people on multiplayer, that's hardly enough to keep people coming back for more".

Roboforge Preview

- Falcon @ 5:26 am PST

We have completed a hands on preview of Roboforge, an upcoming strategic beat-em-up unlike any game you've probably played before.

D2:LOD Pictoral Tour

- Falcon @ 4:55 am PST

At RPGPlanet, The Acolyte of PlanetDiablo takes us on a pictorial tour of the new features of the Diablo II: Lord of Destruction expansion pack.


95 million people playing online by 2005

- Falcon @ 4:40 am PST

A new report has just been released which forecasts that 95 million people will be playing games online by 2005, with some current multiplayer games set to make upwards of $300m over their lifetime.
A new report from research company DFC Intelligence has forecast that as many as 95 million people could be playing games online by 2005, although we would hazard a guess that many of these people will be playing the likes of Hearts, Bridge and the fiendishly addictive Wordox rather than Counter-Strike, EverQuest and Starcraft. It's also worth pointing out that most online gaming concerns are currently losing money hand over fist, but the success stories are certainly not to be sniffed at - report co-author Jessica Mulligan is reported as saying that "some of the online games currently on the market are going to generate well over $300 million in lifetime revenues", which is a hefty chunk of change by any standards.

Kohan Patch

- Falcon @ 4:38 am PST

Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns patch released

Montreal, Quebec. May 8th, 2001 - Strategy First Inc. and TimeGate Studios announced today that they are releasing a patch for the highly praised game, Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns.

Kohan, Strategy First's most recent fantasy/strategy title, has done extremely well since its release in March 2001. It has won several press awards and continues to cause chat room traffic on Kohan forums. The development team is providing players with a patch that will improve some game-play elements and fix minor issues. The patch will - add password support and other improvements to multiplayer games, - add support for Team Deathmatch maps, - fix some game-play exploits, - address some minor unit balance issues,
- and optimize the graphics engine.

On a more colorful note, the team has also changed the Void Beast's spikes to correspond with the player's colors!

The patch is approximately 3MB and will be available on www.kohan.net.

About Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns:

Praised as a potential "Game of the Year," this fantasy real-time strategy game is sure to appeal to a large market of gamers because of its unique blending of different game play styles. While adhering to some of the basics of traditional RTS style games, Kohan's distinctive economy model eliminates the need for micro-management of resources, leaving the player with more time for strategic combat. Kohan will also appeal to the tactical wargamer with its company based combat system and use of military concepts such as formations, visual range, supply range and morale. Not only will the more strategic and tactical players enjoy the game, but RPG gamers will also feel at home with the game's gripping storyline and role-playing elements, such as experience for heroes and units, and heroes being carried over from one mission to another. The land of Khaldun is a lush and visually stunning fantasy setting where dragons, spells, and epic battles are commonplace.

The player takes on the role an immortal being belonging to the race known as the Kohan. The Kohan were once the ruling power of the world, but were wiped out in a series of massive cataclysms. They did not die an eternal death though, and have since been reborn and reawakened in a new world, unlike the one they once knew. They must come to grips with their past glory, their present hardship, and their future destiny. The player must try to solve the mystery of his race's destruction and attempt to return the
Kohan to their rightful glory.

About TimeGate Studios
TimeGate Studios, www.timegatestudios.com, is committed to being a premier content provider for all popular gaming platforms. Founded in 1998 in Houston, Texas, TimeGate offers a unique environment for talented game developers. TimeGate's founders and management, with backgrounds in a number of industries, provide for a strong infrastructure that ensures success in current and future projects. TimeGate Studios is preparing for the future with plans to continue to expand its existing line of strategy titles and enter the online multiplayer market.

About Strategy First
Strategy First Inc. is a leading worldwide developer and publisher of entertainment software. Established in 1991 and headquartered in historic "Old Montreal", Strategy First has become one of the largest publishers of PC CD-ROM games in Canada. After acquiring Micomeq, a game developer located in St. Jérôme, QC., and retaining talent from Midnight Software, an award-winning development team from Ottawa, ON., Strategy First is poised to become a major force in the gaming industry. Best known for its Man of War series and Disciples: Sacred Lands, the company has also earned critical acclaim for its work on such titles as Steel Panthers I and II and Age of Rifles for Strategic Simulations Inc. Strategy First has worked with other leading companies in the software and entertainment industry; most notably, A&E Network, Lucas Arts, Cinar Films, Empire Interactive, and Strategic Simulations Inc.

Interviews

- Falcon @ 4:35 am PST

PlanetBaldursGate had the honor to do an interview with Steve Bokkes Designer for Icewind Dale and Heart of Winter, about the free “Heart of Winter Downloadable Dungeon Set”. New areas, a new monster and all for free to owners of Heart of Winter. There will also be bug fixes that were missed or new since the patch 1.41.
Included with the interview are 3 exclusive screenshots showing off the beautiful artwork that Black Isle Studios always provides.

Stomped chats with Massive Developments' Wolfgang Walk as he talks about their upcoming underwater action game for the PC, AquaNox. Check out the exclusive interview at http://www.stomped.com/published/jcal989331425_1_1.html

Updated "Supreme Ruler 2010" News

- Falcon @ 4:34 am PST

BattleGoat Studios is pleased to announce exciting new details on its upcoming release "Supreme Ruler 2010". Particulars are posted on the Official Website. Supreme Ruler 2010 is an Economic and Military Strategy game for Windows based PC's that is scheduled to be released Q1, 2002.

What's new at the Web Site :

1) Hot Spots - California
This is the first released story line of one of the more than 200 scenarios that are included with Supreme Ruler 2010. It integrates today's headlines with tomorrow's possibilities to paint a very plausible picture of a turbulent decade to come...

2) Interview with Supreme Ruler 2010 Lead Designer
David Thompson discusses some of the concepts and challenges that were addressed in the design of the game and how both the casual gamer and the hardcore strategist should find Supreme Ruler 2010 thought-provoking and fun. Topics discussed include the Economic and Diplomatic components, the Resource Management, and of course the challenge to incorporate the Real World as much as possible.

3) Interview with Supreme Ruler 2010 Lead Programmer
George Geczy discusses many of the technical innovations that are part of Supreme Ruler 2010; The use of Satellite Imagery for the maps, the Military Modeling, and dealing with an AI that has to accurately depict the management of a modern country.

4) New Screen Shots!
A couple of new screen shots to wet the appetites!

5) Ask the Development Team
Got a specific question regarding BattleGoat Studios or Supreme Ruler 2010 that you want answered? Here's the place to ask it!

Asus is cheating

- Falcon @ 4:28 am PST

Apparently ASUS enabled the "transparent walls" and "wireframe" cheat modes in their newest v11.01 drivers (again).
Full story here

Tuesday, May 08, 2001

More Hacking

- Hobbes @ 2:39 pm PST

There is more hacking going on today. The same lks and nsr that got Blizzard have attacked the Legacy Network, whose SC Legacy site is popular in the Starcraft community. The hackers claim they do not delete files; they are only "renaming the default webpage ... then upload a webpage explaining, or with links to sites that do explain, exactly how [they] got in and how [the website owner] can fix it." It seems they are only able to hack Windows NT systems, so if your website in Unix, have no fear. I managed to get a screenshot, which you can check out here.

New Diablo 2 LOD Screen Shots

- Shadow @ 2:14 pm PST

Yes thats right new Diablo 2 LOD Screen Shots. You can view them by clicking here.

Monday, May 07, 2001

Sennheiser HD570 Review

- Falcon @ 8:40 pm PST

Our latest review here at Gamesurge is the Sennheiser HD570 Symphony headphones. See what we found about it's comfort and performance here:

Win a E3 Guest Pass

- Falcon @ 8:00 pm PST

Don't have your ticket for the E3 Expo yet?

Here is you chance to win yourself a ticket! BrokenPixel is giving away 5 single guest passes to E3 Expo in LA. The guest passes will grant you access to the five exhibit halls on the 17th, 18th or 19th of May 2001.

Contest details:

Contest winners will be announced @ 10:00am PST Wednedsday May 9th.

Black Sea Studios

- Falcon @ 7:59 pm PST

This is what they had to say:

We are happy to announce that new game development company, Black Sea Studios, was just formed in Sofia, Bulgaria with only one goal: to create never-ending fun. We have three games in design phase yet and they will be announced soon after E3 this year. Both of them are Real Time Strategy games and one is Action-Arcade full of humor and surprises. The company was founded by Vesselin Handjiev who made as Lead Designer TZAR: The Burden of the Crown.

As he said:

"It was really sad for me to leave Haemimont Multimedia where I did TZAR: The Burden of the Crown with one perfect team of professionals. But I just had to take this decision because I do strongly believe in the future of computer gaming and of the quality of the ideas which we will bring to life at Black Sea Studios."

As a Bulgarian company Black Sea Studios aims to become a center of gaming industry in whole East and South Europe, attracting young talents and experienced professionals from all over the world. With creative atmosphere and perfect working environment we do hope to achieve free exchanging of ideas in-between our teams with one final goal – creating fun.

We are targeting on players’ audience “everyone” by creating high playable, original and most of all fun computer games by means of initial concept, programming, game design, management, animation, graphics (2D, 3D), production, sound FX, music etc. Of course, the most important is the gameplay itself as single and multiplayer experience. At Black Sea Studios we’d like to develop for wide range of platforms like (but not limited to): PC, Macintosh, XBOX and PS2.

We do strongly believe in the support of our fans and on-line communities. Black Sea Studios takes care of the gamers and never ignores the desires, suggestions, dreams and efforts of its fans.

From now on we are expecting to receive gamers' wishes at dream@blackseastudios.com

We are also proud to bring to your attention Black Sea Studios' web site. From now on it will be changed regularly. We are expecting your suggestions at webmaster@blackseastudios.com

New Online Network Offers Link To Television Show

- Falcon @ 7:54 pm PST

New Online Network Offers Link To Television Show

Game Nation United is a new online community currently accepting applications from webmasters looking for a new home for their website and a fresh opportunity for advertising.
Those who join will have their web hosting fees paid for and their website promoted on television through Game Nation. In exchange, webmasters will donate their traffic and page impressions into a big pool to be marketed towards advertisers along with television spots. The trust in online advertising is weak right now and the hope is that by offering it along with television commercials, that will lower the risk for many media buyers who can always divert their payments into TV commercials should the online operation fail.
Those you sing up for this opportunity will split the profits with the network, 50/50.
Founded by the trio of GG8.com, GameNationTV.com, and Viewz.com, you can read the full details at www.gnunited.com.

Full news article at: http://gg8.com/news.php?id=1972

D2 updates listing

- Falcon @ 7:46 pm PST

Planetdiablo have a huge listing of the modifications, balances, improvements, and fixes in the Diablo II: Lord of Destruction Beta, since version 1.06 of Diablo II. There is an amazing amount of these changes, which affect everything, from how screenshots taken in Diablo II are numbered, to the most intricate aspects. See a list of the many changes since version 1.06 in the newly opened Beta Version History section of PlanetDiablo's Diablo II Expansion Set Beta Central.

Here are some highlights:
* (Barbarian) Whirlwind attacks 50% more if you are dual wielding.
* (Necromancer) Fixed Iron Maiden+Blood Golem bug and increased the Blood Golem's Life stealing.
* (Paladin) In expansion games, Blessed hammer/Concentration combination imbalance has been corrected.
* Fixed a bug that allowed a Necromancer to summon more than one Golem at a time.
* Gambling prices are now based on the character level.
* Items Gambled have a chance to be Exceptional and Elite Items once a player has reached certain character levels.
* In multi-player, you may only go hostile once per minute with each other player in your game.
* Holding down SHIFT and LEFT-Clicking on health potions in inventory, will auto-move them to the appropriate column in your belt.

Hands on Excalibug Preview

- Falcon @ 7:44 pm PST

One of Actiontrip's editors has had a chance to try this one out... It's an innovative and rather fun take on the classic Excalibur story. Only this time, the bugs are running the show.

When king Arthur drew the sword from the stone, a metal splinter from the sword fell to the ground; this is how Excalibur got its younger brother - Excalibug.

The gameplay is kinda similar to the one we saw in Evil Islands...

Cinemaware Interview

- Falcon @ 7:42 pm PST

GameSpyDaily has posted a new interview with Cinemaware's Lars Fuhrken-Batista. Lars goes into detail about the new Defender of the Crown title, the classic days of the Amiga and the future of Cinemaware:

RedMoon Preview

- Falcon @ 7:42 pm PST

A persistent online world, RedMoon comes to us from a Korean anime comic book series of the same name. In RPGVault's RedMoon Preview, they look ahead to developer JCEntertainment's anime-influenced online world, which will be published in North America by its affiliate, World Netgames.

Rage's Typhoon Review

- Falcon @ 7:41 pm PST

SimHQ.com Review: Rage's Typhoon follows in the steps of several previous Eurofighter sims by the company, dating back to the early 1990s. How does this latest effort measure up among such greats as EF2000? Who will like Typhoon? Who won't? Dan "Crash" Crenshaw lays out his thoughts on this unique new sim in his review.

Xteq's X-Setup 6 Review

- Falcon @ 7:40 pm PST

Today at 3D Spotlight is a review of what is probably the most famous Tweak Utility around. No it's not Tweak UI, rather Xteq's X-Setup 6. Here's a bit of it;
"Compared to Version 5.7, Version 6 is not so much a re-working/updating of all the Plug-ins & Wizards it contains, it’s more of an upgrade to the underlying program itself. It’s now easier to update X-Setup with new Plug-ins than before, it’s also safer to use & will hide Plug-ins which aren’t intended for your Operating System.

Or to put it a another way, X-Setup 6 is basically the same smelly old tramp you all know, but this time he’s been given a bath, had his liquor taken away & been given new clothes, oh man! Now, let’s get a bit deeper into the new features shall we?"

Mechcommander2 Preview

- Falcon @ 7:38 pm PST

My apologies for the lack of news on my part lately...

Moregaming.com takes a look at mechcommander2

"As the MechCommander, you control a company of mercenary MechWarriors in a real-time game of power, combat, and treachery set in the BattleTech® Universe. Drawn into a bitter struggle for supremacy among three warring noble houses, you must use your strategic knowledge and tactical skills to change the balance of power in a region of space known as the Chaos March."

Blizzard.com Hacked

- Hobbes @ 6:33 pm PST

Blizzard's website was hacked shortly before noon EST. Restoration of the website began soon after as Blizzard removed the hacked page and restored the real Blizzard.com. A screenshot can be found here. The text of the hack attack reads:

The page cannot be displayed because our force of trained cyber monkeys and underground gnomes have disabled it.
The page you are looking for is currently unavailable. The Web site might be experiencing technical difficulties, or it just may have been hijacked by our force of trained cyber monkeys and underground gnomes who wish to rule the world.

Please try the following (Not that they will help):

Click the Refresh button 10,000,000 times, or just go here.
If you typed the page address in the Address bar, make sure that it is spelled correctly, if it's not then you are a retard and shouldn't be online.
Click the Back button to try another link, but we'd rather you go here.
Shouldn't you be running unix?
Cannot find server or DNS Error
Why? Because you have been hacked, dumbass.

hacked by: lks and nsr

We have been informed that these hackers also attacked http://www.fallen-angels.net, which is one of the biggest online gaming groups. They, of course, also removed the hacked page already, though.

Monday's Hardware/Tech News

- Hobbes @ 4:18 pm PST

Thanks to Stomped


Processors/Coolers

Motherboards/Chipsets

Graphics

Audio

Buyer's Guides

MYST III: Exile Ships

- Hobbes @ 4:14 pm PST

Ubi Soft Entertainment says that their latest adventure game, Myst III: Exile for PC and Macintosh begins shipping to stores nationwide today. Myst III: Exile is the third installment of the popular adventure series, developed by Presto Studios (not Cyan, the original developers). Look for it in stores everywhere by the weekend.

EverQuest Trilogy Revealed

- Hobbes @ 4:14 pm PST

Sony Online Entertainment today revealed a new EverQuest game compilation called the EverQuest: Trilogy. The anthology will include the original EverQuest, The Ruins of Kunark Expansion Pack, The Scars of Velious Expansion Pack, a collectable map of Norrath and two collectible EverQuest figurines. Look for the EQ Trilogy this Fall.

Steel Soldiers Interview

- Hobbes @ 4:13 pm PST

Stomped offers a Q&A with Jamie Barber about their upcoming strategy game sequel to Z, Z: Steel Soldiers. The interview delves into such notable game elements as the storyline and the game engine.

Icewind Dale: heart of Winter International Patches

- Hobbes @ 4:11 pm PST

Interplay has released four new International patches for Icewind Dale: Heart of Winter

  • Icewind Dale: Heart of Winter Patch (German) v1.41
  • Icewind Dale: Heart of Winter Patch (French) v1.41
  • Icewind Dale: Heart of Winter Patch (Italian) v1.41
  • Icewind Dale: Heart of Winter Patch (Spanish) v1.41
  • Baldur's Gate 2: Throne of Bhaal Movie

    - Hobbes @ 4:08 pm PST

    Woo hoo! Interplay has released a brand spankin' new movie taken from the new expansion pack for Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal. Here's your options:

    Windows XP on October 29

    - Hobbes @ 3:13 pm PST

    Microsoft has announced that Windows XP will be shipped worldwide October 29th this year and will not be delayed as previously expected. Going by Microsoft's recent history , products go gold 3 months before release , thus XP should go gold in August. It is already May and only at Beta 2 status, so its a long road ahead for Microsoft if they are going to make this deadline.

    Sunday, May 06, 2001

    B&W reviews

    - Thundra @ 10:07 am PST

    For those Black&White addicts here's four new reviews to Peter Molyneux's most recent title. Apart from all the polemics and all the faults the game (may) have, most people seem to agree that it's one heck of a great game. I know i do... hehe :p And this reviews also come with a positive outcome.

    Anyway, check them out:

    - TechTV
    - Gamespot AU
    - PlayNow
    - PcGameWorld

    Hey! And don't forget to make constructive critics, otherwise you won't get anywhere... As i use to say: "If you're thinking on saying crap, think twice and shut up!".

    Gee... now who has an attitude?...

    Source: PlanetBlackandWhite

    Diablo II: Lord of Destruction beta screenshots

    - Thundra @ 9:48 am PST

    Screenshots from the Diablo II: Lord of Destruction beta testers were made available by Blizzard. In the twelve recently released shots we can take a look at some of the new items, features and improvements that the Expansion Pack holds. Take a look at them at Blizzard's site.

    Also, PlanetDiablo opened their Beta Test Gallery where beta testers can submitt their shots as well.

    Just a side note: You can download some neat Diablo II commercials at PlanetDiablo's files section. :)

    Saturday, May 05, 2001

    The Best Game So Far This Year

    - Hobbes @ 5:39 pm PST

    GameSpot's Question of the Week asks "What's Your Favorite Game This Year So Far?" Black and White is winning by a whopping 400 votes, so if you hate that game, Go tip the vote!

    Elite Force 1.2 Linux

    - Hobbes @ 5:35 pm PST

    The Voyager: Elite Force version 1.2 Linux server has been released. It contains all the fixes from v1.1, has new multiplayer skins, adds compatibility with the upcoming expansion pack/Jeri Ryan speech pack, fixes the Double-DetPack explosion crash, speeds up level loads, and allows more options for memory configuration. You can get it at the sites below:


    Linux Elite Force 1.2 Server Mirrors:



    Elite Force 1.2 Patch Mirrors:

    New Final Fantasy Movie Trailer

    - Hobbes @ 5:33 pm PST

    A new theatrical trailer for the upcoming Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within has been released at FinalFantasy.com.

    Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within is set to be released on July 11, 2001.

    Operation Flashpoint Preview

    - Hobbes @ 5:32 pm PST

    eUniverse Games takes a look at the latest beta of Operation Flashpoint, by Bohemia Interactive and Codemasters. Will this game be a new shining star in the realm of tactical shooters? Read their extensive preview to find out.

    Wolfenstein's Birthday

    - Hobbes @ 5:29 pm PST

    It's been nine years today since id Software released Wolfenstein 3D, which arguably was one of the games that really gave first-person shooters a boost to make them what they are today - one of the dominate genres for the PC. Well, the series is not dead, and Gray Matter Studios (former Xatrix/Kingpin boys) and id Software are making a sequel, which should be released later this year. Here are some hot screenshots (thanks to VE) of Return to Castle Wolfenstein, its Quake 3 sequel.


    (Click to enlarge!)

    New Unreal Fortress Released

    - Hobbes @ 5:22 pm PST

    Build 600 of Unreal Fortress has been released today! This build doesn't do much, but it's a very small download. This update fixes problems with pickups in third-party maps and updated versions of My-Monkey and Spritzer. You can download the update from the Unreal Fortress site.

    Commandos 2 Movie

    - Hobbes @ 5:21 pm PST

    There is a new video preview of Commandos 2 on Belgian site SpelletjesGarnaal, who have taken a press build of Pyro Studios' squad-based tactical combat game for a spin. The movie is available in the usual downloadable (22.4 MB) and streaming Windows Media Player formats, and offers a whopping 17 minutes of in-game footage that particularly demonstrates the difficulty of the game.

    Gangsters 2 Shots

    - Hobbes @ 3:56 am PST

    Eidos has released a new batch of screenshot loving from their upcoming sequel to Gangsters: Organized Crime, Gangsters 2: Vendetta. Here's a bit on this upcoming gem (something to sink your teeth into before gawking at the shots):



    Gangsters 2 – Vendetta brings to life the organized crime world of Prohibition America, a time when violence and greed ruled in the pursuit to become the boss of bosses. Use your skills and cunning to build a team of mobsters including specialists such as Card-Sharps, Hit-Men, Arsonists, and Safe-Crackers in the attempt to dominate the cities in the state of New Temperance.


    Incorporating a completely new real-time engine, multiple cities and the helpful advisor, Gangsters 2 – Vendetta promises to bring a whole new world of crime and disorder to the PC.


    (Click to Enlarge!)

    Friday, May 04, 2001

    BREAKING NEWS: Diablo II: Lord of Destruction Beta Testers Selected

    - Hobbes @ 4:06 am PST

    Blizzard has selected the beta testers for the Diablo II: Lord of Destruction Closed Beta. If you have been selected, you will be receiving an e-mail shortly. If you were not selected, you will not receive an e-mail. The CDs have been sent via Federal Express®. If you are one of the Beta testers, you should receive your Beta CD within the next few days. Please stop by Blizzard's website regularly for more updates on Diablo II: Lord of Destruction. For more questions about the Diablo II: Lord of Destruction Beta go here.

    Friday, May 04, 2001

    Games Do Not Equal Death

    - Falcon @ 11:33 pm PST

    Munkaboo over at BWCenter today made a request to all gamers out there to help in the removal of scapegoating of computer games relating to violence
    I personally agree totally with this, and I have signed this petition whole-heartedly.

    You can too, if you want, by heading over to this place and putting your name on the list. So go on, you know you want to. Link: Games Do Not Equal Death Petition

    Bounty Hunter Preview

    - Falcon @ 11:13 pm PST

    GG8.com has posted a preview of Bounty Hunter (PC) at http://gg8.com/news.php?id=1964.
    "The first in a trilogy of games currently in the works from Nordic games developers Galactic Alliance, "Intergalactic Bounty Hunter" will be created using a new type of game structure, one that is episodic in nature and meant to have the feel of a television or movie series. Initially to be published for the PC on CD-ROM this September 29th worldwide, later segments have the options of reaching players through a variety of venues, from streaming media, online cartoons, Internet games, and even traditional television."

    Game packaging

    - Falcon @ 11:12 pm PST

    Take a look at the shelf that you store all your games on. You will probably see a set of big shiny cardboard boxes, adorned with screenshots and some basic game info, containing a manual showing you how to play and a nice colorful disk containing up to 650mb of pleasure. I bet it looks good but is there really any need for them?

    Chris Taylor Chat

    - Falcon @ 11:00 pm PST

    CHAT WITH CHRIS TAYLOR ABOUT DUNGEON SIEGE - MONDAY, MAY 7 ON ZONE.COM

    Microsoft today announced that on Monday, May 7, from 6pm to 7pm PDT, Chris Taylor, lead designer of Dungeon Siege, will be in the Zone Theater Chat Room to talk about the highly anticipated RPG title from Gas Powered Games.

    Chris Taylor has spent more than a decade creating and designing video games. His portfolio includes such classics as Hardball II, 4D Boxing, Triple Play Baseball, and the critically acclaimed Total Annihilation RTS title. In May of 1998, Taylor founded Gas Powered Games on the east side of Seattle and immediately began work on Dungeon Siege.

    To participate in the chat and go behind the scenes of Dungeon Siege, click "Chats & Events" on the navigation bar across the top of any Zone.com page, and then click "Chat Rooms" and "Zone Theater Chat" in the room list.

    Slated for release in Fall 2001, Dungeon Siege is an action fantasy role-playing game featuring an immersive fully 3-D environment. Dungeon Siege plunges players into a continuous 3-D fantasy world on a quest to stop a mysterious evil that has been unleashed. Beginning with a single character, players can travel through the world and gather a party of up to 8 characters or choose to face the challenge alone. The fusion of action role-playing and real-time strategy controls in Dungeon Siege impels players into one over-the-top battle after another as the storyline unfolds.

    For more information about Dungeon Siege, visit the official Web site at: http://www.microsoft.com/games/dungeonsiege/

    Dune Generations Information

    - Falcon @ 10:59 pm PST

    If you are interested in finding out more about Dune Generations, but have not been able to find info in English, StrategyPlanet now has info available on this massive multiplayer STRATEGY GAME, as well as a number of screenshots. See it all here.

    Operation Flashpoint Screenshots

    - Falcon @ 10:59 pm PST

    XLGaming has just posted up a bunch of new screenshots of Operation Flashpoint, the new soldier sim from Codemasters. They messed around with the mission editor and ended up creating world war 3.

    Age of Mythology

    - Falcon @ 10:56 pm PST

    ENSEMBLE STUDIOS AND MICROSOFT UNLEASH THE WRATH OF THE GODS WITH "AGE OF MYTHOLOGY"

    Extension of "Age of Empires" Franchise Brings Legends to Life in Revolutionary New Game

    REDMOND, Wash. - May 3, 2001 - Microsoft Corp. and Ensemble Studios announced today the development of its latest PC game, titled "Age of Mythology." "Age of Mythology," a real-time strategy game, is set in a mythological past when heroes battled monsters of legend and gods intervened in the affairs of mortal men. "Age of Mythology," a branch of the "Age of EmpiresÒ" franchise that has sold over 8.5 million licensed units worldwide, features a new proprietary 3-D engine enabling stunning visual effects, animated water, mythological characters and hundreds of on-screen units.

    Using familiar elements of classical mythology, "Age of Mythology" casts players as ancient Greeks, the Norse and Egyptians. "Our game puts players in those ancient civilizations where praying for luck in battle, fighting Cyclopes or petitioning Zeus to call down lightning bolts on the enemy are real occurrences," said Bruce Shelley, co-founder and senior game designer for Ensemble Studios.

    "Age of Mythology" incorporates Ensemble Studios' trademark features from previous "Age of Empires" games, including a compelling economic model, a massive army and battle system, unequaled computer artificial intelligence, random maps, intuitive gameplay and extreme attention to detail.

    "'Age of Mythology's" 3-D engine delivers an experience beyond anything we've been able to create previously," Shelley said. The new engine allows for impressive graphical detail in a fully 3-D environment, including realistic terrain and lighting adjusted to produce the look of any time of day. In-game cinematics create a seamless, story-based and character-driven campaign. In addition, the game features incredible special effects, including fluid ocean waves, waterspouts, infernos, lava, tornadoes, earthquakes and smoke with astonishing levels of detail.

    "Age of Mythology" will be shown for the first time in Microsoft's booth at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles on May 17-19, 2001.

    Vivendi Universal Publishing and Tolkien Enterprises

    - Falcon @ 10:50 pm PST

    Vivendi Universal Publishing and Tolkien Enterprises Announce Long-Term, Exclusive Deal to Create Games Based on Classic Fantasy Novels The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings

    Vivendi Universal Publishing's Sierra Studio to Release First Game, "Fellowship of the Ring," in Early 2002

    TORRANCE, CA (May 3, 2001) - Vivendi Universal Publishing (VU Publishing), a division of Vivendi Universal (NYSE: V), and Tolkien Enterprises today announced a long-term, exclusive deal calling for the development of interactive games based on J.R.R. Tolkien's worldwide best-selling novels The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, a trilogy comprised of The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King.

    Under the deal, VU Publishing's Sierra studio will develop and release multiple games based on the literary works The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings over the next eight years. The first game, "The Fellowship of the Ring," in development by Seattle-based WXP, Inc., will be released in early 2002 for a next-generation console system.

    "The Tolkien license, combined with our development, marketing and distribution strengths, is truly a formidable combination," said Agnès Touraine, Vice Chairman & CEO, Vivendi Universal Publishing. "It will reinforce our leading position in the games market, enlarging our offer to customers."

    "The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings properties are the pre-eminent fantasy works of our time and represent one of the strongest brands in the entertainment industry," said Hubert Joly, CEO, Vivendi Universal Games. "They provide a tremendous amount of rich material from which we expect to make some of the best fantasy games ever created."

    "We plan to release titles on all major gaming platforms in order to make the interactive versions of Tolkien's great works available to as many gamers as possible," continued Joly.

    "The world of Middle-Earth will come to life in Sierra's upcoming games," said Laurie Battle, Director of Licensing for Tolkien Enterprises. "This relationship will allow us to reach out to a new audience which may never have experienced the magical realm that J.R.R. Tolkien created in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. In addition, people who are already fans of the books will now have the opportunity to step into the shoes of their favorite characters and explore the lands that they have imagined."

    J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings have set the standard for fantasy writers and creators of epic worlds. The novels are massive best sellers, having sold close to 100 million copies worldwide and been translated into 26 different languages. The Lord of the Rings trilogy is the subject of three movies being created by New Line Cinema for release over the next three years.

    More details about Sierra's game lineup will be revealed at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) held in Los Angeles, California from May 17th to the 19th.

    Pool of Radiance Preview

    - Hobbes @ 5:50 pm PST

    GameSpot has posted a preview of Pool of Radiance: Ruins of Myth Drannor, the D&D role playing game that's in the works at Stormfront Studios. As is common with GameSpot previews, there are new screenshots and plenty of gameplay details in here.

    Project Eden Shots

    - Hobbes @ 5:45 pm PST

    Eidos has released another new patch of Project Eden screen shots, the forthcoming action/adventure game from Core Design. Here's a taste of its storyline:
    Due to severe overpopulation, the planet Earth’s diameter is increasing with the growth of towering mega-cities, each inhabited by millions of humans. Buildings are growing ever-upwards, interconnected with a thick web of roads, walkways and service channels. In these giant human hives, only the affluent may feel the rays of the sun and breathe the cleaner air.

    Descending thousands of feet through the echelons, conditions steadily decline to slum level. The inhabitants of these squalid areas barely glimpse the murky sunlight that filters through the dense infrastructure above. And below the slums lie even more repugnant conditions… an underworld occupied by criminals, cultists, the wretched and deranged. Assumed derelict, the very lowest of these areas is visited only by structural engineering teams when foundations require strengthening - in order to accommodate yet further elevations.

    It is within one such city that Project Eden is set. The player(s) controls a team of 4 members of the UPA (Urban Protection Agency) - an elite force which deals with serious disturbances within the city. The team is initially called in to investigate problems at the ‘Real Meat’ factory, in which all the equipment has started to simultaneously malfunction. Technicians sent to repair the machinery have gone missing without explanation… Here begins The UPA’s sinister trail of inquiry…


    (click to Enlarge!)

    Star Wars Starfighter: Special Edition on Xbox!

    - Hobbes @ 5:43 pm PST

    LucasArts' confirmed today that Star Wars Starfighter: Special Edition will be making its way to the Xbox video game console this fall. With a host of extras, this is the improved version of Star Wars Starfighter for the Playstation 2.

    Commandos 2 for Dreamcast Cancelled?

    - Hobbes @ 5:40 pm PST

    PlanetDreamcast is reporting that it looks like the Dreamcast port of Eidos' strategy title has been cancelled. After looking around the Official Web Site, they were able to find information on the PlayStation 2 and PC versions, but no information of the Dreamcast version.

    New Diablo II: Lord of Destruction Screenshots

    - Hobbes @ 5:38 pm PST

    Another day, another set of Diablo II: Lord of Destruction screenshots. Blizzard offers three new ones today: the first shows the Amazon character class, the second one offers a sneak peek at a a new item type - the charged item, and the third screenshot shows off the Eaglehorn - a new Elite item. Good stuff!

    Tropico Review

    - Hobbes @ 5:34 pm PST

    Eurogamer has up a review of Tropico, which allows you to rule your own tropical island in this amusing Caribbean dictator sim (in my opinion, it looks like an advanced version of "SimCity"). Here's a snippet:
    Starting the game you are given the choice of which dictator to play as, with options ranging from Fidel Castro and Augusto Pinochet to Evita Peron and .. um .. Lou Bega. Yes, the man responsible for that reprehensible slice of pop music "Mambo #5". Like I said, this isn't a game that takes itself seriously. Once you have picked out your favourite dictator you are given a dossier on them which allows you to change their characteristics, such as who they are (from Harvard graduate to former farmer), how they came to power (democratic election, installed by the CIA, military coup etc) and what their strengths and weaknesses are (such as being an alcoholic, flatulent, a diplomat or an entrepreneur).

    Xbox is Complete!

    - Hobbes @ 5:30 pm PST

    According to this report over at the official Xbox site, the Xbox is all done, at least as far as the hardware goes. And the final Xbox development kits are supposed to reach the developers before the E3. All MS needs to take care of now is coming up with enough "ready to ship" Xbox games for the launch.

    Wednesday, May 02, 2001

    C&C: Yuri's Revenge Interview

    - Falcon @ 4:21 pm PST

    Stomped chats with Mark Skaggs of Westwood Studios as he talks about Command and Conquer: Yuri's Revenge, the upcoming mission pack for their hit RTS game C&C: Red Alert 2. Check out the exclusive interview at http://www.stomped.com/published/jcal988816270_1_1.html

    New Titles to be Published Under VU Publishing's Sierra Brand

    - Falcon @ 4:20 pm PST

    Vivendi Universal Publishing and Fox Interactive Announce Co-Publishing Agreement Featuring Four Key Franchises

    New Titles to be Published Under VU Publishing's Sierra Brand

    Deal Marks First Multi-Franchise Strategic Partnership Under Fox Interactive's New Business Model

    TORRANCE, Calif., May 2 -- Vivendi Universal Publishing (VU Publishing) and Fox Interactive announced today a three-year, worldwide co- publishing agreement which grants VU Publishing exclusive rights to manufacture, market and distribute key titles for PC and next-generation console platforms. Under the agreement, VU Publishing's Sierra studio will co-publish the following action/adventure titles:

    * Aliens vs. Predator 2: AVP2 is the PC sequel to the most terrifying PC game of 1999. Based on the combination of two of the most highly successful sci-fi franchises in movie history, AVP takes players to a world where species battle species for the ultimate game of survival. AVP 2 is being developed by Monolith Productions and will be available on the PC this year.

    * COPS: Based on one of Fox's most watched reality-based programs, COPS takes gamers on a voyeuristic adventure with real life police officers on the beat. Combining bad boy attitude and hard-core reality, this
    next-generation console title will mix the addictive action of the TV series with interactive gameplay and heart-pumping situations like those faced by real Cops. COPS is being developed by Mass Media for the PlayStation2 and Xbox(TM) video game system.

    * Die Hard: Nakatomi Plaza: This game combines all of the exciting elements of the original Die Hard movie in an action/adventure game set in the 3D environment of Nakatomi Plaza. With 40 floors of new office space under construction, John McClane must navigate his way through terrorists, civilians and hostages to save himself and his wife from the high rise of horror. Pirhana Games is developing DH: Nakatomi Plaza for the
    PC.

    * Die Hard: Next Generation: Additionally, this agreement grants VU Publishing the North American publishing rights to a second Die Hard game currently being developed for the Nintendo GameCube. The game will feature a new and original Die Hard storyline with spectacular graphics and innovative gameplay. UK-based Bits Corp is developing Die Hard for the Nintendo GameCube.

    * No One Lives Forever: Currently being developed for the PlayStation 2, this game will feature four new prequel levels featuring beautiful Agent Cate Archer in her younger days as a thief. Recently, the PC game was honored as PC Game of the Year and PC Action Game of the Year. No One Lives Forever is being developed by Monolith Productions and will make its console debut this year.

    * No One Lives Forever: The Sequel: VU Publishing has been granted the rights to publish the sequel to No One Lives Forever on multiple platforms including PC and next generation consoles.

    The addition of the Fox Interactive titles complements VU Publishing's roster of best-selling franchises, which includes Sierra's Half-Life, Tribes and Hoyle; Blizzard Entertainment's Diablo and Warcraft; and Universal Interactive Studios' Spyro the Dragon and Crash Bandicoot.

    "This is a very significant alliance because it involves the collaborative strengths of two industry giants," said Luc Vanhal, CEO, Vivendi Universal Interactive Publishing North America. "Combining Fox Interactive's award- winning titles with the power of Vivendi Universal Publishing's worldwide sales and marketing represents a terrific opportunity for both companies and great news for gamers."

    "This deal represents Fox Interactive's first major alliance since announcing our intent to co-publish earlier this year," said Steven Bersch, president, Fox Interactive. "I am pleased to partner with Vivendi Universal Publishing, and look forward to leveraging their sales and distribution strengths to best offer our titles to game enthusiasts around the world."

    The companies will release their first joint titles later this year. Aliens vs. Predator 2, Die Hard: Nakatomi Plaza and No One Lives Forever (PS2) are expected to ship in the fourth quarter.

    Mech2 Preview Copy signup

    - Falcon @ 4:17 pm PST

    MECHCOMMANDER 2 SNEAK PREVIEW SIGN-UP STARTS FRIDAY

    Microsoft today announced that at an undisclosed time on Friday, May 4, gamers will be able to sign up for the chance to win a sneak preview copy of MechCommander 2 at http://www.microsoft.com/games/mechcommander2/, or any of the other 13 participating sites around the Web.

    A select group of gamers will win exclusive sneak preview copies for this highly anticipated game. Would-be MechCommanders will want to check the sites frequently, as the forms will be posted at an unspecified time. The official MechCommander 2 site will also list all of the participating sites hosting the sign-up form. Ten lucky winners will be chosen from each participating site, along with 50 additional winners randomly selected from all entries.

    Winners will 'Know what it is to command' -- months before the game hits store shelves. MechCommander 2 sneak preview winners will receive:

    * A preview CD of the game, complete with limited edition CD artwork

    * Access to a private newsgroup to report gaming experience and discuss strategies for better play

    * Private chat with the MechCommander 2 development team on May 31 on Zone.com

    MechCommander 2 gives gamers more than amazing gameplay -- it draws them into the rich, 16-year history of the BattleTech Universe. Players will be immersed in intense tactical gameplay, commanding up to 16 enormous BattleMechs in real-time combat, where outsmarting the enemy is their key to victory. MechCommander 2 is fully 3D, with state-of-the-art terrain that can be maneuvered to the gamer's advantage. Players can knock down trees, blow through walls, jump jet onto cliffs and step on things standing in their way to victory!

    While a lone MechWarrior can wield up to 100 tons of "Mechanized" death, the MechCommander rules the battlefield from above, imposing his strategic will and mastering all he surveys. When he issues an order to jump, MechWarriors obey. When something needs to be destroyed, the MechCommander need only finger the target. He rules the battlefield with an iron fist, commanding his units from the orbital dropship.

    MechCommander 2 will also include full support for Internet play, with matchmaking available on Zone.com. For more information on the game, visit: http://www.microsoft.com/games/mechcommander2/

    3dSL OS updates page

    - Falcon @ 4:15 pm PST

    3D Spotlight has just updated their popular "OS Updates" page with a huge list of all the add-ons and updates you can imagine for Windows 2k, ME and 98se. They have also included two new sections for Chipset Updates and Essential Downloads (update related).

    Soldier of Fortune 2 at E3

    - Hobbes @ 12:21 pm PST

    Soldier-Of-Fortune.com has posted what Raven Software will be showing of their upcoming game Soldier of Fortune 2 at E3 this year, through Raven's Kenn Hoekstra. Three levels and several weapons and enemies will be on display at the Activision booth. Go to their web site for more info.

    Diablo II TV Commercials

    - Hobbes @ 12:05 pm PST

    From the Blizzard site:

    Not one, but two Diablo II TV commercials are available here. Not only can you download the cinematic commercial that ran late last year, we are also making a live action spot that was filmed but never released available for the first time ever!

    X-COM: Enforcer Review

    - Hobbes @ 10:24 am PST

    ActionTrip has up a review of X-COM. The game's a lot like Serious Sam and MDK in a way. But the developers have problems achieving a decent gameplay balance.

    GeForce 3 Review

    - Hobbes @ 10:22 am PST

    Fresh today on EuroGamer is an in-depth look at NVIDIA's new GeForce 3, in this case an ELSA Gladiac 920 card. Here's a snippet:
    So if you've got a bit of cash to spare and badly need to get rid of that shocking TNT2 Ultra or Voodoo 3 3500, just what does the GeForce 3 offer you now that you wouldn't be better off waiting to buy in a year's time while using a Kyro II or GeForce 2 Ultra in the interim? The most obvious point is its performance in current 3D games and how it shapes up against other cards. Obviously, if performance is out there and above what we currently have, it'll certainly be worth considering as a lasting performance leader. Cue obligatory Quake III benchmarks? Sure, but we'll digress a bit as well.

    Diablo II Exp

    - Raven @ 1:37 am PST

    Blizzard have been busy, posting lots more information concerning their highly anticipated Role Playing expansion, Diablo II: Lord of Destruction. The official website has been updates with a barrage of new screenshots. These screenshots depict the following:
    1. Orb a new class specific weapons for the Sorceress
    2. Charms, a new item type found in Diablo II: Lord of Destruction.
    3. Rune Sets, a new class of items in Diablo II: Lord of Destruction.
    4. new enhancements, to Hirelings in Diablo II: Lord of Destruction.
    5. Siege Beasts and Reanimated Horde new monsters.
    6. Jewel, a new type of Gem found in Diablo II: Lord of Destruction.
    7. Crafted Items, special new items that can be created in Diablo II: Lord of Destruction.
    Alternatively if you would like to know about the Diablo II expansion you head over to the games index page.

    Tribes II Patch

    - Raven @ 1:20 am PST

    Hot of the release of this First Person Shooter, Tribal War have just released information on a new patch that should be completed by next week. Here a quote, containing some of the new updates:
    "Allow configuring of command map bindings and observer bindings

    Add filter for Team Damage ON/OFF into filter settings

    Shape detail slider returns to full each launch.

    Preventing "sticky" mouse buttons.

    Get Central Download Site completed.

    Get all the documents we have available published to that site for general use by players.

    Voodoo improvements (and interface with Wicked3D) : Work to try to find any framerate improvements possible...especially focusing on the Voodoo 3 and Voodoo 5."

    Also anyone having trouble with the in-game TRIBES 2 Player Database should be patient: Dynamix programmer Dave Georgeson says they are working on the problem right now. Get the full buzz here.

    Matrix on Xbox

    - Raven @ 1:01 am PST

    PC.IGN, have just posted up a new article, with some surprising details. Apparently Microsoft has loaned $5 million to Interplay in exchange for exclusive rights to Shiny's The Matrix (to be put on their consolse the Xbox) for atleast six months after its release. And it gets better:
    "In the report, it was stated that the game would feature online play only through the Xbox, and more extras than other versions. These include using actual Woo Ping choreography, the actual actors providing voices to the characters, and more music tracks from the film's composer in addition to more vehicles, weapons, and video. Also, Interplay will be spending $500,000 to develop online features for the game that will only be available to Xbox owners."
    The full story, can be viewed by heading to this page. As a side note, after reading that article, you almost have to think interplay got a bad deal.. :/

    Icewind Expansion

    - Raven @ 12:50 am PST

    The development team of Icewind Dale have just announced an upcoming free expansion for this smash hit, Role Playing Game. The "Heart of Winter Downloadable Dungeon Set", as estimated, will include between 75-100MB of additional gaming goodness. Here is the official word:
    "Over the past month, several of the boys from the Icewind Dale team have been busy working on a free downloadable expansion set for Heart of Winter, and wanted to give you some updates as to its progress, as well as introduce it to those of you who are interested in continuing the adventures in Icewind Dale.

    When the web expansion is installed, a mysterious halfling introduces himself in the Whistling Gallows Inn in Lonelywood. He seeks a party of stalwart heroes for a quest to a place of great wonder, with treasures beyond the imagination. Should the party accept, they will be transported to a new place, far from the icy terrain of the Dalelands, finding themselves within the walls of a ruined castle in an unfamiliar land...

    We're including more new magic items, some of which are coming from those of you in the gaming community! Log on to our message boards to submit yours!

    New monsters coming too!

    We're doing our best to keep the overall download size at a respectable level, but expect it to be within the 75-100MB range, and it will be localized in French, German, Spanish, and Italian as well.

    In the meantime, check out the screenshots from one of the new underground areas and the cast. We've also got another new portrait for your gaming delight!

    New Stuff - The web expansion will tentatively offer the following to our Heart of Winter customers:

    2 main new areas to explore with a variety of sub levels 20-40 new magic items, 5-10 of which will be taken from our customer's submissions via our web boards at http://www.blackislestudios.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi Atleast 1 original new monster, and 4 creatures animations from Baldur's Gate/Baldur's Gate II. Playable from Lonelywood in the Whistling Gallows Inn. The new areas feature a separate story, independent from the Icewind Dale and Heart of Winter storylines. Targeted for players from 11th - 18th level, and will also be adjusted for higher level parties via Heart of Winter's "Heart of Fury" mode. Many new puzzles, traps, and more.Introduces version 1.42, with some additional program fixes."

    To see one of the new portraits, and some in game screenshots, head over to the official interplay site. More details about this expansion will be posted up as they come to light.

    Tuesday, May 01, 2001

    Columbine is Back

    - Raven @ 1:29 am PST

    On Thursday, relatives of those murdered in the Columbine Massacre filed a multibillion dollar lawsuit against 25 media companies, all of whom either manufacture or distribute video games.
    "The lawsuit claims that violent games, particularly Doom, Quake, and Redneck Rampage, and other media images such as a school massacre scene from the movie "The Basketball Diaries" influenced and inspired the rampage by students Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold. The suit asks for $5 billion in damages, plus damages of $5,000 to $10 million for individual parties in the lawsuit. The lawsuit was filed a day before the two-year anniversary of the tragedy.

    The 25 companies being sued include AOL Time Warner, Nintendo of America, Sony Computer Entertainment, ID Software, Atari, Sega of America, Virgin Interactive Media, Activision, Polygram Film Entertainment Distribution, New Line Cinema, and GT Interactive Software."

    In responce to this news a number of website have posted up editorials and comments. One in particular struck me while I was searching on the net. "Videogames and Youth Violence" was an article written up two years ago by PC.IGN. Given the current lawsuit PC.IGN have revisited this article. The article is a great read and shows how ultimately, you can't blame video games for everything, and we have to take atleast some responcibility for our own actions. Here is a quote:
    In the end everyone has to realize that the seed of evil, that creates scenes like the one in Littleton, rests deep within the minds of certain individuals just waiting for something to bring it out. We are being naïve and untruthful to ourselves if we state across the board that video games aren't one of the things capable of doing it. But with that knowledge must also come the understanding that such minds are warped from the inside out and will fixate on anything that enables them to finally act out the dark thoughts that rest inside. Taking away video games won't stop the violence nor will the elimination of dark cloth, long coats or heavy metal music. The only thing that will make the killing stop is the early detection and treatment of mental instability. Let's just hope that our lawmakers realize that before they choose to make a nation hostage to the actions of a disturbed few.
    Get the full peice here.

    "Pentium® 4 processor CPL Holland"

    - Falcon @ 1:26 am PST

    CPL Europe Press has issued the following press release:

    CPL Holland sponsored by Intel

    For immediate release:

    CPL Europe announced today that the upcoming event in Holland will be sponsored by Intel as event sponsor and will be named "Pentium® 4 processor CPL Holland". For more details on the event visit http://www.intel-holland-cpl.com.

    The Pentium 4 processor is Intel's latest and fastest processor delivering performance where users will experience and appreciate it most. For consumers, the Pentium 4 processor delivers high performance for processing video and audio, exploiting the latest Internet technologies, and displaying 3-D graphics. As they connect entertainment and productivity devices to their home PCs, users get even more value from their high-performance Pentium 4 processor-based systems.

    First Project Entropia Beta Testers Selected

    - Falcon @ 1:25 am PST

    Gothenburg, Sweden - April 30, 2001 - MindArk AB announced today that the first group of 50 external beta testers has been selected for its eagerly awaited persistent state world, Project Entropia. The initial stage, consisting of technical tests is to begin shortly. Thousands of additional testers will be added as testing progresses through further phases over the coming months.

    "We're absolutely thrilled to have reached this stage of development," stated MindArk Chief Operations Officer Jan Welter.
    "Our talented team has been working extremely hard, and even in this first stage of beta testing, we're very confident that Project Entropia will provide a unique interactive entertainment experience for millions of Internet users around the world. Furthermore, we believe that offering this experience with no set fees will revolutionize the entire entertainment industry.

    Project Entropia takes place distant in the future on the outlying planet Calypso where human colonists face challenges from native creatures and invading robots. It will allow thousands or perhaps even millions of Internet users to participate simultaneously in this exciting virtual world. Additional information is available on the official website at http://www.project-entropia.com/ and prospective beta testers can still apply at http://www.project-entropia.com/betatest/apply.asp?topic=betatest.

    MindArk develops technology solutions that address the entertainment needs of millions of Internet users. With novel applications in the interactive entertainment sector and browser infrastructure, MindArk is a world leader in expanding the new universe.

    Sierra Licensing deal

    - Falcon @ 1:21 am PST

    SIERRA SIGNS DEAL WITH CELEBRITY TURNED REAL-LIFE ACTION HERO, JONNY DRAMA

    BELLEVUE, WA (April 30, 2001) - Sierra today announced an exclusive licensing deal with world-famous movie star turned secret agent, Jonny Drama. The licensing deal provides Sierra with long-term rights to create and publish interactive entertainment based on the works and adventures of Drama.

    "Man, after my last flick, it was, like, Fade to Black for Jonny. I split the celluloid scene and rode off into the sunset," said Jonny Drama. "At first life was like a long skinny mocha - smooth, cool, but obscurity became like, a drag, man! Don't get me wrong, the silver screen is a hip trip, but I was in need of a different kind of action, Jackson. So when Sierra laid their new bag on me, I said - let's go daddy-O! I was down for the kick of the click and that up close and personal vibe of a lean mean console machine. You dig?"

    Best known for his leading roles in the blockbuster G-man movies, Jonny Drama has become internationally famous for his secret agent abilities both on and off the set. Recipient of 1995 Silver Screen Actors Award for his role in The French Roast Connection, Drama has taken on the role of real life spy, who has saved the world from destruction on several occasions. Sierra's first Jonny Drama title will focus on Drama's transition from movie star to real-life secret agent - defeating his evil arch-nemesis, Dr. Bumbershoot, and foiling his plans to destroy the world. Drama will be offering Sierra exclusive inside information on his missions.

    "Appearing in more than 100 films throughout his career, Jonny has acquired an enormous following," said John Friederich, marketing director at Sierra. "Through our licensing agreement, these fans are soon to become gamers, a natural progression as we're simply providing another medium to share and document Jonny's life. We're really looking forward to working with Jonny and having him on our team."

    Sierra On-Line, Inc. , a subsidiary of Vivendi Universal Publishing and part of the Vivendi Universal Games division, is one of the original developers and largest worldwide publishers of interactive entertainment and productivity software. Sierra is renowned for releasing critically acclaimed and award winning titles that represent a wide variety of computer entertainment on both next generation console and PC platforms.

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    GameSurge homepageNews for today's gamerInformation about the GameSurge SitetO To the Arcade MainpageTo Pinball menuTo Arcade games Menu

    Archive for May 2001


    Thursday, May 31, 2001


    After the release of some screenshots of World War III, we have updated our gallery with some World War III screenshots. Check it out here.


    Tolstiy's Place managed to rope Gearbox's Randy Pitchford into a quick interview concerning the recently gone Gold action game - Half-Life: Blue Shift.


    JoWood has released six new screens from their upcoming real-time strategy wargame, World War III. Check out these six screens and see why this game could be the next big thing in large-scale, modern-day RTS combat!


    Eidos today announced that multi-award winning first person action adventure title Deus Ex is currently in development for the PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system. In Deus Ex for PlayStation 2, the player will have the ability to create and manage a compelling alter ego. Players will be offered several different avenues to select and develop their own unique set of skills, attributes and nano-tech augmentations. How players choose to deal with scores of non-player characters affects the outcome of the game, minute-to-minute, mission-to-mission, and beginning to end. Developed by Ion Storm-Austin, Deus Ex is slated to arrive in stores in winter of 2001, completely revised for PlayStation 2.

     


    GamesFirst has managed to score some Jedi Knight II screenshots. There are 5 in all for the sequel to Jedi Knight that is being developed by Raven Software on the Quake 3 engine. A couple of them a very nice looking. Don't miss these! A little less exciting is the preview of the game that they have posted. And finally, JediKnightII.net has opened.


    Aspyr Media announced today the retail release of Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2 for the Mac. Originally developed by Activision, THPS2 brings the popular extreme skating game to the Mac, thanks to the efforts of Mac development studios, Westlake Interactive. Look for the game in retail outlets throughout the U.S. beginning today.

    Ion Closing

    - Hobbes @ 11:06 am PST

    Following up on the story from earlier today about the closing of ION Storm's Dallas studio, AVault has confirmed with John Romero that Eidos will in fact be closing the studio - it just hasn't happened yet. No date is given, but AVault's news item also debunks the earlier report that Anachronox is already in duplication, saying that development "continues at an accelerated rate" on the game, and that the team is "putting in long hours to complete the game before Eidos shuts down operations."


    PlanetStarmada has conducted an interview on Star Trek: Armada II, asking lead artist Peter Calabria about this space strategy sequel currently being created at Mad Doc Software. Peter talks about how he got started in the game industry, his contributions to the game at hand, some of the new races and new ship designs, and how they're trying to balance new artwork with that inherited from the original game.


    Tonight, Action Vault learns more about AquaNox, the upcoming underwater action game from Massive Development.
    AquaNox Interview
    AquaNox is the sequel to the award-winning Archimedean Dynasty from Germany's Massive Development and publisher Fishtank Interactive. We recently got in contact with Managing Director Alexander Jorias to find out more about the game in this informative AquaNox Interview, complete with four all-new screenshots.


    GameSpy Announces Release of GameSpy Arcade v1.08

    New Version Supports Virtual LAN Games Including Red Alert, Red Alert II, Diablo and Starcraft

    GameSpy Industries has announced the release of GameSpy Arcade v1.08, with support for previously unavailable games such as Red Alert, Red Alert II, Diablo and Starcraft. Already recognized by game fans as the Internet's most comprehensive multiplayer gaming application, the expanded game support offered by GameSpy Arcade provides gamers with more gaming choices than ever before.

    GameSpy Arcade is available free from www.gamespyarcade.com and supports a wide variety of games, from fast action favorites like Half-Life, Unreal and Quake III Arena, to online classics such as Spades, Hearts, Poker, Checkers and Chess.

    Support for Red Alert, Red Alert II, Diablo and Starcraft was added after fans clamored to play these games with their friends in the GameSpy Arcade community. Previously, multiplayer options for these games were limited to LAN access or centralized online services. But GameSpy Arcade's systems allow anyone to set up a virtual LAN to host or take part in game sessions for these titles, some of the hottest-selling games in recent time.

    Additional features of v1.08 and recent versions include:
    * The Compact UI feature offers better screen layout for fans using smaller monitor resolutions.
    * Improved speed and network efficiency for location, portrait, and other chat-room info.
    GameSpy Industries continues to strive for better, more useful and more immersive features with every new version of GameSpy Arcade. GameSpy continues to roll out support for new games each week, and is also currently developing a 1.1 version of the application, which will include many new features.


    Microsoft Games UK has issued the following press release:

    Microsoft launches Train Simulator website

    Microsoft Train Simulator brings the power and the glory of some of the world's most famous trains and railways to your PC. Now you can check out the official UK site at http://www.trainsim.co.uk/

    Browse the pages to view spectacular screen shots of trains like the Orient Express and the Flying Scotsman. Find out information on the world-famous routes, dynamic environments, real world challenges and the nine driveable locomotives featured in the game.

    The site also allows you to pre-order your copy of the game, view details of Train Simulator partners and download wallpapers including the American bullet train, the Amtrak® Acela Express, and more.

    Experience The Power And The Glory now at http://www.trainsim.co.uk/


    The first step toward MindArk’s revolutionary online entertainment experience

    Gothenburg, Sweden - May 11, 2001 - MindArk AB announced today that the initial stage of beta testing has begun for its innovative and widely anticipated persistent state online world, Project Entropia. This first phase consists of technical tests with a small group of testers. Further phases over the coming months will involve many thousands more.

    “We believe the Internet is the next frontier in entertainment media,” said Marketing Manager Patric Sundstrom. “With Project Entropia, MindArk intends to be the pioneer in creating a new, ground-breaking form of interactive entertainment. And since we will make it available at no initial cost and with no set fees, we anticipate that it will be enjoyed by millions of Internet users around the world.”

    Project Entropia is an interactive universe that takes place in the future on the distant outlying planet Calypso where human colonists face challenges from native creatures and invading robots. It will allow millions of Internet users to participate simultaneously in this exciting virtual world. Additional information is available on the official website at http://www.project-entropia.com/ and prospective beta testers can still apply at http://www.project-entropia.com/betatest/apply.asp?topic=betatest.

    MindArk develops technology solutions that address the entertainment needs of millions of Internet users. With novel applications in the interactive entertainment sector and browser infrastructure, MindArk is a world leader in expanding the new universe.


    Microsoft Sidewinder Precision Pro 2 Joystick
    Like most MS hardware, the Sidewinder Precision Pro 2 is quite well made and can stand up to the toughest abuse. Drop it, kick it, eat it, whatever: this joystick will take a beating and keep on ticking. This would be a perfect stick for those of you who have kids: let them hammer the buttons all they want and I can almost guarantee that their hands will give out long before the joystick does.


    XS Underground has posted a review of the Road Warrior Q-Drive External Hard Drive, a key chain sized USB flash memory device.

    Road Warrior Q-Drive External Hard Drive Review

    The Q-Drive is a USB storage device that makes transferring files between USB-equipped PC's extremely simple. Plug it in, install the drivers, and you are all set. It is about the size of a key, which makes it easier to carry than Zips or floppies. While it is geared towards laptop users, desktop users can share in the ease of use. It does help if you have a USB port on the front of your desktop, or as in my case, a port on the monitor base.


    Rails Across America is carrying cargo - A public demo!

    Montreal, Quebec. May 30th, 2001 - Strategy First Inc. and Flying Lab Software
    announced today that they have released a demo for their upcoming real-time rail strategy game, Rails Across America.

    The demo contains most of the major features, including; eight different engines out of the thirty-six that will appear in the final game, and four player multiplay with matchmaking services through Gamespy.

    Players will be able to compete across a map of the entire US with a network of hundreds of tracks and thousands of trains connecting the continent. They must control their fleet of engines, make strategic decisions where to expand, where to compete, and when to engage in a well-timed price war, use influence to cause stock raids, investigations, and sabotage - all in an attempt to outmaneuver their opponent.

    Go back in time to when the railroad was a lifeline that drove the economy and brought the continent together! Conduct one of the most prosperous businesses of the era and test your skills against some of the most infamous rail Barons of the 1870's!

    The Rails Across America demo is 35MB and will be available on www.flyinglab.com and www.strategyfirst.com.


    With so many new leaked & beta detonator drivers, it is easy to get confused getting the right one. It’s not always the case that the latest version will be the fastest.

    Sometimes new drivers lead to a performance and/or quality decrease. In the new article, Toby has tested all the new 1x.xx series of leaked/beta detonators, a few of the 7.xx detonators and the official drivers to draw a comparison.

    Check the whole article at: http://www.3dspotlight.com/articles/detonator_drivers/index.shtml


    WHO: You and members of the Neverwinter Nights team.

    WHAT: Neverwinter Nights IRC Chat

    WHERE: RPG Vault Chat (fans using IRC clients can connect to host17.webmaster.com in channel #ignvault)

    WHEN: Thursday, June 7, 2001
    6:00 PM Pacific Time

    WHY: To get the latest information straight from members of the development team.

    For more information on Neverwinter Nights, go to http://www.neverwinternights.com

    Neverwinter Nights is definitely among the most highly anticipated titles of the year, be sure to come with your questions ready for the team. See you there.

    Outsmart

    - Falcon @ 8:46 am PST

    TOUR THE CITY OF ANGELS WITH OUTSMART(TM)

    Online Game Show Developed by Jellyvision Hosts June Sweepstakes

    Microsoft today announced that OutSmart(TM), an online celebrity game show, is set to send one Grand Prize Winner and a friend to Los Angeles. Jessica Alba, star of James Cameron's DARK ANGEL science-fiction series, competes against all takers...that is, until our next celebrity challenger takes her place!

    Until June 18, the MSN Gaming Zone will be holding weekly drawings for an autographed Jessica Alba poster. To enter for the drawing, contestants must register a score, and it's not necessary to win the game to enter. Contestants can register up to a hundred scores per week. Those who submit at least one score each week during the contest period will be eligible for the Grand Prize of a two-person trip to Los Angeles.

    OutSmart is a free interactive celebrity-based game show developed by Jellyvision that incorporates real celebrity audio into gameplay. For the first time, players can compete against their favorite stars to prove they know more about the stars than the stars know about themselves. OutSmart is available exclusively at Zone.com.

    More information is available on the Zone at: http://zone.msn.com/outsmart

    Wednesday, May 30, 2001


    We have been informed that the Tribes 2 Linux patch mentioned on a bunch of other major sites this morning was not for public consumption. For all those people that downloaded and installed it Loki has released a reverse-patch patch, which is available right here.


    Thanks Stomped.

    Miscellaneous/Life


    Processors/Coolers

    Motherboards/Chipsets

    Graphics

    Audio

    Controllers

    Buyer's Guides



    Word from a reliable source is that Sierra Studios and Valve Software have cancelled the Dreamcast version of Half-Life. No official word has come down from Sierra on this matter, so don't go crying just yet. Still, its mysterious yoinking from EB's listings (just weeks before its planned release) does seem to hint at a cancellation, as the game has been plagued by delays and Blue Shift, the exclusive single player mission that was created for the port, will be released in the near future for the PC. Read about it more here.


    Version 1.6 of the Strike Force mod for Unreal Tournament has been released. This latest release contains a large number of new features, including new weapons and equipment, three new game modes, 48 new maps, a customizable HUD, and that's not even the start of it. All of these features come at a whopping 254 MB download (ouch). Separate downloads are available for PC, Linux, and Mac users.


    ActionTrip has put up a review of the latest and hottest PC game on the market right now, Myst III: Exile. Here's a snippet:
    The Myst mythology (which is especially interesting to the true fans who even read all its paperback editions) is something special. The entire story revolves around magical portal-books, which bond worlds. The story speaks of a man who belongs to the D'ni race, which has the ability to create such books.

     


    Poptop Software has done it again with their latest sim "Tropico". Being their newest release since Railroad Tycoon, this "Civilization" type of strategy game will certainly strengthen this already this popular genre. This very addictive game is more than about ruling people and resources; moreover, gamers find themselves performing actions beyond the scope of political correctness. Here's a clip from The Game Den's review:
    Tropico is not just about building and moving cargo from point A to point B. You must learn how to control people who do not want to be controlled. How to win elections through various different means and how to control the money necessary to win you the game. Tropico is a game of behind the scenes action where you are watching individual people, planning your crops, hiring the right immigrants and other such detailed work. In the beginning things start to take shape slowly and you can become a bit bored, however this is the time to learn who your opponents could be, plan your islands layout and figure out which industry will lead your people to greatness.
    Read the rest of wacky the review here.

    Cyberpounce

    - Falcon @ 7:53 am PST

    A company in Los Angeles has released a game called CyberPounce designed specially for .. cats. (Cats scratching at your monitor screen? hmm..)
    With its development "overseen by a leading PhD animal behaviorist", CyberPounce offers your feline friend a range of eleven toys to play with on your PC monitor, ranging from cartoon birds, spiders and goldfish to feathers and toy mice. Apparently in testing the game could keep cats entertained for upwards of ten minutes at a time, which as any cat owner will tell you is not bad for an animal with such a short attention span. Double Twenty even claim that the game can turn your cat into a mouse-chasing mastermind. Well, maybe not. But it does "stimulate the brainwave patterns in cats, making them active 'thinkers' when they ordinarily would be sleeping".


    MARK H. WALKER, announces the release of The Video Game Almanac (Mars Publishing) for 2001, effective May 24, 2001. Written with the help of Mike Emberson and the staff of Video Game Nation, the book covers all gaming platforms. The Almanac's 480 pages include reviews of over 450 current games, interviews with gaming notables such as John Romero, an overview of the current business climate, comparisons of the new technologies and a cheat-sheet for those interested in breaking into the most exciting industry of the 21st century. The Almanac is available at Electronic Boutique, Barnes and Noble, Amazon.com, and fine bookstores everywhere.


    For those of you that missed the un-moderated chat with the TimeGate Studios folks about their real-time strategy game Kohan, you can check out the log from this event here.


    Sony Computer Entertainment president Ken Kutaragi has declared the console war over, saying that "Microsoft was finished before it even got started" and that "the next game platform belongs to Sony and Nintendo".
    For the full story, as well as a daft little Zero Wing parody inspired by that last comment, check EuroGamer's report

    To me it sounds like Sony is trying to cover up their concern that they might actually have some competition...


    Did you know...?
    The musical score for the new game from Bohemia Interactive "Operation Flashpoint" (OFP) was composed and produced by old XeNTaX members Mateus (Ondrej Matejka) and Pina (Martin Pilny)?

    More of Mateus' music will be available through the
    XeNTaX website:


    Appearing as guest writer today on AT is QuartertoThree's very own Mark Asher. Mark writes his response to an article we recently published - "Get Your Game Hype For Nothing, And Your Previews For Free" in which Actiontrip suggest that websites should consider charging the publishers for various types of,
    what we call: "free advertising."
    This article offers an even clearer insight into the current (sorry) state of online game journalism and the collapse of the online advertising model.
  • Original Article:
  • Mark's Article:


    MUNCH AND ABE STILL AT LARGE IN ODDWORLD

    Vykker Labs, makers of BlitzPacker Brew, today announced that they are conducting a full scale Odd-hunt for two extremely dangerous fugitives. Test subject A1105b, a Gabbit also known as Munch, was last seen fleeing from Vykker Labs with a carnivorous pack of Fuzzles. Also be on the lookout for the Mudokon fugitive: Abe. Both are considered to be extremely
    dangerous.

    To learn more about Vykker Labs, all of their wonderful products, and their generous contributions to Oddworld be sure to check out the new video at Xbox.com as seen at this year's Electronic Entertainment Expo. See why Oddworld should be everyone's number one travel
    destination!

    Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee brings Oddworld to life in full 3D. Players embark on a journey through a changing world of oddball creatures, off-the-wall action and fiendish goons. Take on the role of Mudokon champion Abe(TM), and his plucky aquatic Gabbit partner Munch(TM), in a fully 3D, fully odd adventure across Oddworld. Abe and Munch are a pair of lab rats that have taken one prod too many, and now it's up to you to help them turn the tables on the evil Glukkons(TM) and their gun-toting lackeys.
    Use Abe and Munch's psychic powers, wacked-out consumer power ups, and Oddworld's oddball inhabitants (via GameSpeak(TM)!) to save Oddworld!

    Xbox is Microsoft's future-generation video game
    system that delivers the most powerful games experiences ever. Xbox empowers game artists by giving them the technology to fulfill their creative visions as never before, creating games that blur the lines between fantasy and reality. Xbox will be available in North America on Nov. 8, 2001, at the estimated retail price of $299.99*(U.S.).


    GameSpy Industries Re-Launches ClassicGaming.com

    Enter the Special Launch Sweepstakes -- Win a Classic Donkey Kong Jr. Cabinet-Style Arcade Game

    GameSpy Industries has re-launched ClassicGaming.com, the Internet's premier online resource for classic coin-op arcade and home console systems.

    Visitors to the redesigned site can enter the special ClassicGaming.com Launch Contest, with the chance to win their own arcade game - a full, cabinet-style Donkey Kong Jr.
    game, courtesy of Blast from the Past Amusements. The contest ends June 5, 2001.

    The now-slicker ClassicGaming.com is the Web's most comprehensive, most popular site for fans of classic games - everything from coin-op arcade games like Pac-Man and Asteroids, to classic home console systems, like the Atari 2600 and Intellivision systems (you can even learn all about Zero Wing, the inspiration for "All Your Base Are Belong to Us"). Fans can get the latest classic gaming news, read about the Game of the Week, access other feature articles and download arcade emulation software.

    What's more, new sites are constantly being added under the ClassicGaming.com umbrella, offering fans of classic games more and more content and features each week.

    ClassicGaming.com is part of the GameSpy Network, an extensive network of more than 50 sites devoted to games of all genres, including the Webby Award-winning GameSpy.com; FilePlanet.com, the Web's largest game file download site; and PlanetQuake.com and PlanetHalfLife.com, comprehensive resources for the world's most popular PC games.

    PlanetSide

    - Falcon @ 6:56 am PST

    Imagine playing Quake or Tribes online with up to three thousand other people. Imagine graphics that look as smooth as pre-rendered movies. Imagine running into battle, with hundreds of other players, against another team of the same number. You’ve just imagined PlanetSide, the world’s first massively multiplayer first person shooter.



    ALL ABOARD! TRAIN SIMULATOR GOES GOLD

    Microsoft today announced that Train Simulator, which brings the power and excitement of some of the world's most famous trains to the PC, has gone gold. This means that the product is completed and is expected to hit store shelves in the U.S. by early June. Train Simulator places the player in the role of engineer with unprecedented realism, exciting real world rail
    challenges, and the tools to recreate almost any railroad experience in the world.


    Lifelike engineer's control panels, scenery and weather, and accurate elevations and terrain data mirror real-world train travel. Player activities can include anything from keeping passenger time schedules while managing unforeseen barriers and negotiating freight through mountain passes in winter storms to navigating some of the world's busiest commuter lines. Train Simulator includes nine different trains, ranging from steam locomotives and modern diesels to high-speed electric "bullet trains." Players can travel any of six famous rail routes from around the globe, including the Flying Scotsman's Settle to Carlisle and BNSF's famous Maria's Pass route.


    More information about Microsoft Train Simulator and the participating railroads is available on the official Web site, at http://www.microsoft.com/games/trainsim/.


    We have updated our Warcraft III Gallery with 15 new rare post-E3 in-game screenshots. Use the link above to check it out.


    A new version of the Quake 3 teamplay mod Art of War has been released. This new release mainly enhances the effects found in the mod, although there are gameplay changes as well. More info on the mod's site.


    WRE has posted a preview of Unreal II based on their E3 impressions. Here's a snippet:
    You'll find yourself relying on your teammates a fair amount in Unreal II. There are, in fact, several team-based missions, pairing you with a squad of mercs or marines to fight off hostiles. But even outside of combat conditions, your interaction with NPCs will shape the game world with you.


    Acclaim is claiming this morning that their PS2 game, Crazy Taxi, is a hot potato. According to data from retailers GameStop and Electronics Boutique, the game is selling like hot cakes. Both companies says that the game has been near the top of their best selling list of console games since its release. You can buy Crazy Taxi 2 for PS2 yourself here.


    The official website for Bitmap Brothers' Z: Steel Soldiers has gone live today. The site will offer further details and eye candy about Bitmaps' second entry into the quirky real-time strategy world known as Z.


    RPG fans will be pleased to hear that the official Morrowind site has posted a new team diary which takes a look at the recent E3 convention in LA.


    Ubi Soft has posted a version 1.2 patch for Myst III: Exile. This latest update adds support for many additional graphics chipsets, allowing them to run the game in software mode. There is also a disclaimer up that says Savage 3D users may experience crashes when running in hardware mode.

    Tuesday, May 29, 2001

    Lab Rat

    - Falcon @ 3:20 pm PST

    After recently releasing Lab Rat to the public, Gamesmagnet's latest free game has already stormed past the 1,000 user mark and is swifty heading towards 2,000!

    Players from all around the world are competing against each other using Gamesmagnet.com's Online Rankings system.

    The Online Ranking system has already been improved since the games initial launch, with new features being added all the time.

    Not only are you ranked, you have your own personal profile that includes your best times, best mazes, points, mazes completed and more!

    All in all, it's a cute game worth playing to pass some time or have a friendly competition with a friend.


    SCHIZM GOES GOLD

    Dutch publisher Project 3 Interactive and Polish developer LK Avalon are very pleased to announce that the long and eagerly awaited stunning 1st person graphic adventure SCHIZM: MYSTERIOUS JOURNEY has gone gold.

    Project 3 CEO Robert Ercevic says: LK Avalon started this project about two and half years ago, on what is one of the biggest games ever produced. We have witnessed their progress from day one and must compliment them on a job very well done. SCHIZM has become everything we expected it would be when we first started talking about the concept and much more. We are convinced adventure-gamers all over the world will be flabbergasted by its beauty.

    SCHIZM is one of the very first games that was designed and developed for DVD-Rom especially, although a CD-Rom version will also be available on 5 CDs. Ercevic: The DVD-version contains a massive 9,5 Gigabyte, so imagine the problems we faced when creating a CD-Rom version. LK Avalon did a fantastic job on this as well and we really feel the CD-Rom version has come out shining.

    The worldwide release of SCHIZM will kick off in Germany, where a completely localized version with German speech will hit stores at June 15th. A localized version will also be released at that date in Holland, but all other countries will have to maintain their poise until September 2001 due to the traditionally quiet game-industry summer.

    For more information please contact Project 3 at pr@project3.com or visit P3 Interactive

    Monday, May 28, 2001


    Thanks Stomped.

    Miscellaneous/Life


    Processors/Coolers

    Motherboards/Chipsets

    Graphics

    Cases

    Buyer's Guides


    Circuit City plans to stop selling adult-rated video games to customers under 17, joining a growing list of companies that have instituted such policies under pressure from politicians. Starting next month, Circuit City’s 627 stores will ask for identification from young people who want to buy M-rated video games without a parent. The policy also applies to R-rated movies and music CDs with parental advisory warnings. Illinois Attorney General Jim Ryan and several U.S. senators have led a charge against the sale of violent video games to children, contending such material can desensitize youngsters to violence. Target, Kmart and Wal-Mart announced similar policies last year. Montgomery Ward and Sears had earlier agreed to stop selling the games altogether.


    Eidos has announced that Hothouse Creations’ Gangsters 2 has been sent to manufacturing and will be in stores on June 8, Gone Gold is reporting. Gangsters 2 is a real-time strategy offering set in Prohibition America that puts people at the head of a crime family. As the Mob Boss, gamers must deal in extortion, illegal liquor, prostitution, violence, intimidation, gambling, gang warfare, bribery, permanent elimination of individuals, and a host of money-earning activities to ensure success over other crime families. New features include: living, breathing cities with day and night events; real-time warfare; a wide range of specialist characters such as hit men; and multiple cities to control, with each offering a different challenge. Martin Carr, Director of Hothouse Creations, commented that their objective for Gangsters 2 was to create an "even more innovative, original and impressive game than Gangsters." Go here to load the first of 52 screenshots.


    VE has posted an interview with James Tsai, Volition's producer, about their forthcoming first-person shooter, Red Faction. Along with the interview are some screens into the interview too.

    We're Back!

    - Falcon @ 1:50 pm PST

    After being down the whole weekend we're back up on a new server which we hope will be the start of a new phase of growth and expansion of Gamesurge.

    The first order of business is for sites that have requested hosting in the last few weeks which I may have put on hold, please contact me again with your site details and I will get back to you.

    Secondly there may be a few bugs around the site while we settle in, if you notice anything out of the ordinary please let us know so we can fix it.

    Wednesday, May 23, 2001


    Are previews nothing more than free ads for game publishers?
    So, what is my conclusion here? Fairly simple: previews are nothing more, but free ads for publishers -- a way to get a few words of praise about your game from various publications, so that you can fully utilize that "package marketing deal". Only, there is one big problem these days: the publishers are beginning to kick us around like an unwanted stepchild. And it's ALL OUR FAULT. No need to shift the blame on the consumers for not clicking on the banners, and no need to actually shift the blame on the publishers for not placing more ads. They know, and (sadly) we know that previews generate more than enough hype, and they're FREE for God's sake!


    Game hype can literally make or break a game, even before it is released. Hype killed Daikatana, while it made Black and White flourish. Dr Foxy, a forum reader, wrote in with this editorial that discusses things such as E3, hype, and gamers' quick nature to judge a game too early.
    Discussion link:

    E3 News

    - Falcon @ 9:39 pm PST

    Too many..
    Sovereign E3 2001 Report - Part One
    Sovereign Vault has posted part one of it's coverage of Sovereign at the E3. This first section is an overview of what's changed in Sovereign since the last E3.

    SimHQ is working on their post-show reports on E3, but one of the things we keep talking about was the A-10 in LOMAC. To kick things off in anticipation of the Hog's appearance in the game, Willem "PALERIDER" Aalbers takes a look at the history of this innovative and powerful aircraft. Read about it in Part One of his series.

    Jedi Outcast: Jedi Knight II E3 Report
    Being developed by Raven Software in association with LucasArts, Jedi Outcast: Jedi Knight II is the next title in the immensely popular Dark Forces series. Having had the opportunity to check out the game at E3, we offer some initial observations on it in this Jedi Outcast: Jedi Knight II E3 Report.

    Star Wars Galaxies E3 2001 Report
    Combining a hugely popular franchise with an experienced development team, Star Wars Galaxies was definitely one of the most highly anticipated titles heading into this year’s E3. As we begin our reports on this year’s crop of CRPG and online world titles, we offer our Star Wars Galaxies E3 2001 Report based on the game’s initial invitational showing.


    "Best PC simulation of 2000" comes to a store near you!
    Steel Beasts tank simulator makes its retail debut

    Montreal, Quebec. May 22, 2001 - Strategy First Inc. and eSimGames are pleased to announce that their real-time tank sim, Steel Beasts, has shipped and will be available in retail stores nationwide.

    Originally available online only, Strategy First and eSimGames are joining forces to bring this award-winning title to the masses through the retail channel for the very first time.

    "We're very excited about this retail release," says Al Delaney, owner of eSim Games, "because we can finally reach all those tank sim fans who didn't know where to find Steel Beasts, or, perhaps, never even heard of Steel Beasts."

    "We are extremely impressed with the feedback Steel Beasts has received from the press and the gaming community alike," says Steve Wall, V.P., Business Development. "We are excited to be part of the effort in bringing this incredible title to the masses!"

    About Steel Beasts

    Steel Beasts is a detailed PC-based simulator of modern mechanized warfare, centered around two of the world's most awesome main battle tanks: the US's M1A1 Abrams, and Germany's Leopard 2A4. Players can experience all the sights and sounds of modern armored combat from the gunner's or tank commander's position, as well as the challenges of tactical planning and decision making from a powerful map view. In addition, multiplayer support allows any mission to be played over a network with any cooperative or competitive style of play, including multiple players in a single tank.

    Steel Beasts was awarded "Best PC Simulation of 2000" by PC Gamer Magazine, Computer Games Magazine, SimHQ.com, GamePen and Wargamer. It has also received multiple Editor's Choice awards, and is in use at the US Military Academy (West Point) to help train future armor officers. Steel Beasts is a must-buy for any tank sim fan!

    Steel Beasts will be distributed by Infogrames throughout North America and in Europe by Strategy First's other distribution partners. For more information about the game, log onto www.esimgames.com.


    GSD offers some screens from four of Gathering of Developers upcoming games as well as five exclusive screens from MindArk's strange MMORPG, Project Entropia:

  • Project Entropia Screenshots
  • Mafia Screens
  • Age of Wonders 2 Screens
  • Hidden & Dangerous 2 Screens
  • 4X4 EVO 2 Xbox


    Today, Shadowbane Vault offers their second report from their ongoing E3 coverage

    Shadowbane E3 2001 Report Part II
    ========================================
    Wolfpack Studios, the developers of the upcoming MMORPG Shadowbane, granted the IGN Vault team a chance to sit down and discuss with them the game's progress and direction as they head towards Phase Two of Beta and eventually final release. The second portion of our Shadowbane coverage is the release of Part II of our three part Developer interview series surrounding Shadowbane. In this interview, Warden talks about the Economy and City Building aspects of Shadowbane.


    They also have their second online picture gallery of Wolfpack Studio's Shadowbane booth from E3, but this section deals specifically with the players of the Shadowbane Community.


    Anarchy Online Vault's has finished their coverage of Anarchy Online at the E3. The article has some impressions, but is mainly an overview of the important features of the game.


    Today in Japan, AMD announced the mobile Athlon 4 processor will be used in notebook systems manufactured by three of Japan's largest computer producers: NEC, Sony, and Fujitsu. It is AMD's attempt to take the notebook market from the Intel Pentium III. It is designed to perform better then the Pentium III, and extend battery performance up to 30%...all at a lower cost. The AMD Athlon 4 will use a Socket A platform, which has already been used by previous Athlon and Duron processors. Notebooks using the AMD Athlon 4 processor are expected to hit the market at the end of this month.


    A preview of Disciples II: Dark Prophecy is up on GameSpot this evening, talking about Strategy First's upcoming sequel to the original strategy game, Disciples: Sacred Lands. Here's a snippet:
    Gameplay should be very similar to that in the original Disciples. You'll still guide parties of up to six adventurers on missions across the land, battling enemy forces and conquering territory for the gold needed to build structures and the mana required to cast and research spells. According to Belanger, though, the "RPG feel has been amplified" in the new game with "more storylines and more depth." Between 20 and 30 triggers for subquests have been added, allowing you more interaction with the world outside of the linear events in each campaign. The example we were shown involved the awakening of an ancient red dragon hostile to all of the races. For a time, the Undead Hordes and the Empire needed to abandon their mutual antagonism and take care of this threat.


    According to a post on the beta forums, Play.net and Cornered Rat Studios have completed their online World War II-era simulation, World War II Online. The game will hit retail and go online in June.


    A small town in Germany has increased the tax rate on violent arcade games by 700% compared to less violent titles. You can find the report here.


    According to BWGame, Lionhead Studios has delayed the Black & White patch scheduled for release on May 21 by ten days. The delay is due to problems with the multiplayer portion of the game not working on certain cable modems and ISPs. Stay tuned and we'll you know when it is released.


    ActionTrip has written a preview of MechCommander 2, Microsoft's upcoming Battletech RTS. The preview is based on their experience with a full build of the game, and basically reads like a mini-review, with their impressions and of course new screenshots.

    Tuesday, May 22, 2001


    This cinematic trailer was displayed at the 2001 Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles, CA. With clips from Diablo II: Lord of Destruction, this trailer gives you a sneak peek into the grim world of Diablo II: Lord of Destruction. Download it here.


    Take a look at Blizzard's new Warcraft III site. This new site features new Screenshots, Animations, a new Cinematic Trailer, a new Wallpaper and more. Stop by regularly for new updates on Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos.


    Though this is not exactly "gaming" news it is definately something that effects many of us gamers out there. Napster has recently launched the beta release of their new, membership based, service. A price has not yet been determined but personally I'm not willing to pay any price. The major record companies were hopefully only making an example of Napster and will leave the other "napsters" out there alone.

    Sunday, May 20, 2001


    NEW SCREENSHOTS!









    E3 Fun Links

    - Hobbes @ 7:22 pm PST

  • PC.IGN has posted a preview of Medal of Honor: Allied Assault from what they saw of the game behind closed doors at E3.

  • PlanetEverQuest has popped up new pictures of Shadows of Luclin. These seem to be digital camera takes from the screens at the show.

  • Gamer's Pulse has posted their E3 - Day 3 content which includes: Day 3 Floor Show Images, a Fellowship XBOX E3 Preview, Never Winter Nights E3 Preview and Screens, Torn E3 Preview and Screens, Empire Earth/Age Of Mytholgy Impressions and Comparison.

  • Over at 3DAP, Hellchick has written  "The E3 Confessions" editorial.

  • HomeLAN has posted a hands-on impression of the E3 build of Return to Castle Wolfenstein

  • VoodooExtreme has also posted their Return to Castle Wolfenstein E3 Impressions - along with some new screens
  • eUniverseGames has posted both a Hands-On AquaNox report and a Hands-On Halo report from E3
  • Fragland dropped us a note letting us know they have posted Day 1 and Day 2 E3 coverage
  • Warcraftiii.Net has E3 Shots from the show floor including the first ever shot of the game's 'World Builder'
  • FGNOnline has a nice little feature on one of the best Xbox games they saw at E3 - Unreal Championship
  • Here is yet more E3 coverage from GameSpy: (Screens) Duke Nukem Forever, Return to Castle Wolfenstein, The Lost (PS2), Global Ops, Freedom Force, Battle Realms, Freelancer, Kengo (PS2), Battlecruiser Millenium, and The Vicious Cycle game engine.

  • E3coverage.com has posted up a few new videos, available in 56k or hi-speed versions

  • EuroGamer has posted a "Ubi Soft" round-up which includes bits on Black Thorn, Ghost Recon, IL-2 Sturmovik, Over And Under, Pool of Radiance, and Verant

  • Following the announcement that Eidos has planned Deus Ex 2 as a console release to be later ported to the PC platform, the The Deus Ex community, didn't take the news too well. As a result a new petition has started to try and get Ion Storm and Eidos to change their minds. In the past we have seen some positive results from online petitions to game developers, so here is the link to read more and sign it.


    PlanetDiablo has a brand new hosted site entitled "Diablo II Encyclopedia," which entails a great program for Diablo II. Here are some of its features:
    • Information and hints about every skill of every character
    • Detailed skill statistics; levels 1-20 and 21-30
    • Mana, Life, and Stamina regeneration calculators
    • The Set - Set Items and complete set effects
    • Hints on how each character can efficiently kill boss monsters
    • Gem effects calculator
    • Information, maps and directions for every Act
    • Information and hints about every quest


    Beta 2.7 of the newest Half-Life mod, GangstaWars, has been released. The new release contains a ton of changes, such as redone weapons, and recoded game modes. Check out the official site more juicy mod action.


    The official Myth III: the Wolf Age E3 trailer is now available for download from The Mill, offering the first in-game footage from the 3D real-time strategy game in development at Mumbo Jumbo Games. The trailer runs for a minute and a half in MPEG format and takes 18.2 MB to download.


    While not yet officially announced, Interplay is currently in the "preliminary planning" stage for Baldur's Gate III (as confirmed by an Interplay representative.) Additionally, this next installment in the series will be ditching the current engine and going full 3D.


    The guys and gals over at WarcraftIII.net have whipped up a nice briefing for Blizzard's upcoming WarCraft III. This fact sheet is just dripping and oozing with bits and pieces of juicy info regarding the upcoming game. Here's a snippet:
    Gameplay Methodology: The system will not be peer-to-peer, nor client-server. It will be more of a "hosted peer-to-peer" where information is transmitted not directly between players, but from players to a central point and then to the other players. The advantage is that there will be no huge banks of servers, as there are for Diablo II's realms, but there will be some means to prevent cheating. Client-server is the only method that is truly effective at stopping all cheating, but for an RTS, client-server is not effective for speed reasons, as far too much information needs to be send every second.


    Voodoo Extreme has up a preview of Return to Castle Wolfenstein. The author, Apache, spent a good deal of time at the game's booth at the E3 Expo, so he knows first hand how the game looks up to now. It includes new screenshots and a great impression of the game, so go check it out.

    E3 Completed

    - Hobbes @ 6:45 am PST

    Today marked the end of another E3 show, and while the booths are still probably being cleared up and packed away, you can be sure that GameSurge will continue coverage. GameSurge will be on top of any straggling items from now through tomorrow. It's been a great show, so expect some great follow up articles over the coming weeks (we must talk to our friends who actually went to the E3 Expo).


    There's a new "all your base" movie out called "All Your Smurf Are Belong To Us" (Requires Flash). It's definitely worth checking out.


    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    Contact: Randy Chase
    Phone: (503) 653-2544
    Email: randy@kelloggcreek.com

    KELLOGG CREEK SOFTWARE RELEASES MAJOR UPGRAEDE
    FOR SPIRITWARS® ONLINE STRATEGY GAME

    Portland, Oregon. May 18, 2001 - Kellogg Creek Software, Inc. announced today that it released a major upgrade this week for the online strategy game, SpiritWars. According to designer Randy Chase, this release marks the single most ambitious upgrade for the game since its original release in 1998.

    "Besides adding over 40 new spirits (playing pieces), 125 new maps and over 15 new tournament rule sets, this release also included a major review of all existing pieces and a variety of adjustments and modifications recommended by the players," Chase explained.

    Coinciding with the release of this Version 1.8.4 upgrade, Kellogg Creek also announced the availability of the long-awaited optional Art CD. This CD-ROM contains the optional large image files of the fine art associated with the game's playing pieces. The art CD may be purchased through the game's web site and will retail for $15.

    Chase explained that this major release was important to show the supportive player base that the game is continuing to grow and evolve in spite of the prolonged legal battle with Wizards of the Coast and parent company Hasbro over the infringement of Kellogg Creek Software's registered trademark for SpiritWars. "Obviously, having to fight a huge corporation over our legally registered and established trademark is a huge obstacle for a small company, but we remain confident that the legal system will provide us with protection and a fair resolution of this matter. It was important, however, to release a significant upgrade to show our appreciation for the on-going support we receive from our player base during this difficult time."

    SpiritWars is an online-only strategy game that blends the mystique of trading card games with the traditional strategy of a board game. SpiritWars was first launched for public play on Dec. 20, 1998. According to Chase, since the release, over 350,000 games of SpiritWars have been played online. The game is available in two versions: an unlimited free-play version and an enhanced subscription version.

    SpiritWars draws freely from a variety of traditional design concepts, but blends them into a unique playing experience that represents a refreshing alternative to the current action-oriented theme of Internet gaming. The game's low bandwidth requirements deliver a satisfying playing experience for players with slower Internet connections and international players.

    With a heavy reliance on traditional mythology and folklore, SpiritWars appeals to strategy, fantasy and war gamers. Because of the familiar board game design and stylish look, complete with an art gallery representing history's greatest painters and colorful literary prose, SpiritWars appeals to casual gamers as well.

    The game's fundamentals are easy to learn - players battle to destroy their opponent's castle. A varied population of game pieces and magical spells create infinite opportunities as players define a unique playing style and philosophy. The playing pieces, called Spirits, combine familiar features of traditional board games with design elements previously found only in collectable trading card games.

    More information about SpiritWars can be found at www.spiritwars.com


    Following on from our report earlier in the week that Britney was about to be the subject of a PlayStation 2 game, today Eurogamer have more details on the project.
    The centerpiece of the title will be a concert recording of Britney during her recent "Oops .. I did it again" tour. Thanks to Enroute's FirstPerson technology though, PlayStation 2 owners will be able to rotate their view of the concert through a full 360 degrees - "able to look up, down, left, right, zoom in and out and turn around to see all the action from all angles".


    XENTAX.COM has released a new version of MultiEx Commander with a totally new layout on the 18th of May 2001. MultiEx Commander can handle 117 different game datafiles and the list is growing.

    In addition to the new program features,
    which you can view immediately at : http://www.xentax.com/html/multiex-features.htm 13 new games are supported:

    Battle for Naboo BIN files (90%)
    Black & White SAD Files
    Descent 1 HOG Files
    Echelon SFX files
    Evil Islands RES files
    Heroes Chronicles SND files
    Hostile Waters MBX/MNG files
    Kingpin PAK files
    Kohan TGW files
    Outlive DAT files
    Red Baron 3D VOL files
    Sin PAK FIles
    Warcarft 1 DATA.WAR files

    The whole setup package deal can be downloaded, or, if you already have version 3.1b, a smaller patch (unzip all files in the patch into the directory you installed 3.1b in, keeping the directory structure of the zip file intact).

    The download address is, as always, http://www.xentax.com

    This can be the tool to use if you:
    A. would like to view graphics, listen to sounds etc.
    from your favourite game and use them on your desktop.
    B. Are building a fansite for a game, and need some
    stuff from the actual game.
    C. Are building a mod for a game and would like to
    preview/use stuff from the original game's archives.
    D. Just love to have access to a huge number of game
    archives.

    There are three download addresses on the site to
    ensure you have the highest possible site, and one
    address offering yet more mirrors.

    Saturday, May 19, 2001


    GameSurge has taken a look at Hostile Waters: Antaeus Rising, an end-of-the-world strategy game. Check out the review here


    We have some hot D2 Expansion screenshots for you today. Click each picture for a larger view (the larger view is rather large in size (150-250K) due to high quality, so if you're on low bandwidth, give it a little time to load):









    " "



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    An affordable, ultra-portable headphone set.
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