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April 17, 2002 - May 02, 2002 - See More Archived News


Thursday, May 02, 2002
 
[Community] 3DSpotlight Becomes TechSpot - posted by Erich Becker at 2:43 pm CDT

To all of our readers that visited, or visit, 3DSpotlight, let it be known that they have changed their name to better reflect their editorial content.

Enter the TechSpot...

 
[Xbox] Xbox Promotions Under Way - posted by Erich Becker at 2:42 pm CDT

Xbox Promotions Under Way for Spring and Summer With Premier Names in Sports, Music, Consumer Products

Microsoft's Console Partners With the Top Brands Among Core Audiences

REDMOND, Wash. - May 2, 2002 - Microsoft Corp. today announced a strategic promotional movement with leading brands in sports, music and consumer products categories to promote the XboxT video game system. Microsoft has entered into a multipartner program for spring and summer, teaming Xbox with synergistic and prominent brands intended to propel the Xbox brand and system into the lifestyles of video game players everywhere. Key alliances include the multicity Pop Disaster Tour, featuring blink-182 and Green Day; the Number One Parts Inc. (NOPI) drag racing series; Pepsi's new SoBe soft drink, Mr. Green; the Association of Volleyball Professionals (AVP); Vans extreme sports; and Zumiez, a chain of youth-oriented apparel stores.

"The hottest video game console on the market today, coupled with some of the most popular names in music, sports and consumer goods, provides all partners with unique opportunities to build brand awareness in a way that we believe our audiences will positively respond to," said Cindy Spodek Dickey, group manager of Xbox Promotions and Events at Microsoft. "These activities will ensure that the Xbox brand stays at the top of consumers' minds."

Pop Disaster Tour

"We're happy that Xbox is on the tour," said Tom DeLonge, lead guitarist and vocalist for blink-182. "That way playing video games can be our first priority and our second priority will be playing great shows."

Xbox will be seen at this year's 46-city Pop Disaster Tour, featuring the multiplatinum-selling bands blink-182 and Green Day. The tour, running now through mid-June, will include Xbox signage and radio promotions. Contest winners in seven cities will get to compete against band members on an Xbox game, and an additional 48 consumers will win an autographed Xbox console through promotions on local radio stations and Xbox.com.

NOPI Drag Racing Association

As previously announced by NOPI, the country's top drag racers will compete for the Xbox Cup, the year-end trophy awarded to the top points winner of the NOPI Drag Racing Association (NDRA). Xbox will be a series sponsor for the inaugural season of the NOPI The Fast and The Furious Racing Series. A full onsite interactive video games area will be located at each series event, featuring Microsoft Game Studios' "RalliSport Challenge" and "Project Gotham RacingT." Xbox also will receive title sponsorship at the premier event in the series and the largest compact auto show in the United States, the NOPI Nationals Motorsports Supershow.

"NOPI, the NDRA and Xbox are thrilled about the NOPI The Fast and The Furious Racing Series for 2002," said Michael Meyers, president of NOPI. "This series will rewrite all the rules about conventional drag racing forums and create a major lifestyle event."

Mr. Green, Newest Pepsi Product From SoBe Brand

The recognizable green color of Microsoft's video game console will be appropriately represented in Xbox promotions for Mr. Green, the distinctive new Pepsi soft drink under the SoBe trademark. Xbox fans and beverage drinkers will get an exclusive chance to win a rare green Xbox unit by entering a contest on the Mr. Green Web site, http://www.mrgreen.com/. In addition, Xbox consoles, games and accessories will be given away by three Mr. Green touring vehicles that will travel to 31 cities nationwide offering consumers samples of Mr. Green for approximately 20 weeks.

"Xbox has taken video game technology to a whole new level, and SoBe is thrilled to partner with Microsoft to deliver a special edition 'green' Xbox; it is the perfect complement to our Mr. Green sampling tour," said Russ Findlay, senior marketing manager for Mr. Green.
"Mr. Green's edgy, irreverent personality and unique taste is a perfect fit for people seeking a beverage as extreme as Xbox video games."

AVP Professional Beach Volleyball Tour

Xbox will hit the sand this summer with the popular Association of Volleyball Professionals beach volleyball tour. Xbox banners will be seen at all tour events and will be included on the AVP Web site, http://avp.com/, and in radio promotions, print ads and newspaper supplements. Xbox consoles also will be given away during the tour, which will stop at five California locations as well as Chicago and Las Vegas between May 24 and Sept. 7.

"The AVP is delighted to welcome Xbox as presenting sponsor of both of our 'live' events on NBC," said Leonard Armato, commissioner for AVP. "Xbox will also be the official video game system and games of the tour. The AVP is particularly proud of its association with Xbox because Xbox is widely regarded as one of the hottest and fastest-growing brands in the world."

Vans Skateparks

Xbox and Vans have expanded their relationship from the existing Xbox sponsorship of the Vans Triple Crown SeriesT to include Vans Skateparks. An Xbox custom video game area will be featured at 12 Vans Skateparks nationwide, the first nonretail sites to include an Xbox games area. Xbox is currently a title sponsor for the Vans Triple Crown Series, featuring the world's top athletes competing in three championship events in each of the following sports: skateboarding, wakeboarding, surfing, snowboarding, and BMX and freestyle motocross.

"Xbox has been a great partner for the youth market, and it has added value to everything we're involved in," said Chris Strain, vice president of marketing for Vans. "We look forward to bringing the Xbox experience to millions of Core Sports enthusiasts through the Vans Triple Crown Series and Vans Skateparks in the upcoming year."

Zumiez

Skateboarders and other extreme sport enthusiasts get their clothing at Zumiez stores, the premier retail chain for youth-oriented apparel, where Xbox will be seen throughout May. Zumiez will showcase the latest in the top-selling skateboarding video game franchise with "Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3" on Xbox at its top 40 retail locations. Zumiez customers will get to play the popular Activision title in retro-style living rooms, and, with every purchase through May 27, shoppers will receive a coupon for $5 off "Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3" or another Xbox title at major video games retailers. Xbox storefront materials will be seen at the 40 Zumiez outlets to promote an in-store "Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3" tournament on May 18 and 19.

"Our staff is excited to offer Xbox as an additional component of the interactive 'Living Room' sets in our stores," said Steve Nygreen, vice president of retail operations for Zumiez. "The combination of product and entertainment is important to maintaining a fun and credible lifestyle shop."

About Xbox

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 is now available in North America, Japan, Europe and Australia. More information on Xbox can be found at http://www.xbox.com/.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software - any time, any place and on any device.

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[GameRelease] Kohan Special Awards Edition Now in Stores - posted by Erich Becker at 2:41 pm CDT

KOHAN SPECIAL AWARDS EDITION NOW IN STORES

Montreal, Quebec. May 2, 2002 - TimeGate Studios, Inc. and Strategy First, Inc. announced today that the Special Awards Edition of Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns (KIS) has shipped and is now in stores nationwide at a suggested retail price of $29.99 US.

With dynamic new features and extra content, the KIS Special Awards Edition will maintain the same award-winning gameplay, while adding extra features, such as; 13 new heroes, 12 new maps, 16 new computer AIs and an enhanced computer AI system.

"The KIS Special Awards Edition is a perfect addition to the Kohan collection," says Adel Chaveleh, Managing Director of TimeGate Studios. "Those that didn't get the chance to play the original will now have the opportunity to own a copy with added value!"

Innovation in gameplay and less focus on player micro-management have earned Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns critical acclaim from media groups worldwide. Earning nearly 30 awards, along with having swept the "(Real-time) Strategy Game of the Year" category from three of the most influential print magazines - PC Gamer, Computer Gaming World and Computer Games Magazine, KIS also won a coveted nomination for "Computer Strategy Game of the Year" from the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences. In addition, TimeGate Studios? was nominated for ?Rookie Studio of the Year? by the Independent Game Developers Association.

For more information about the series, including Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns,
Kohan: Ahriman's Gift and now the KIS Special Awards Edition, log onto or www.timegate.com or www.strategyfirst.com for details.

About Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns

This real-time fantasy 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 even 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 leaders and units gaining experience, leaders being carried over from one quest to another and, of course, the lush and visually stunning fantasy land of Khaldun, where dragons, spells and swords are common place.

Immersed in a fantasy setting, players take on the role of an immortal being known as the Kohan. The Kohan were once the ruling power of the world, but were wiped out in a series of massive cataclysms; however, they did not die an eternal death, 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 their race?s destruction and attempt to return the Kohan to their rightful glory. About TimeGate Studios, Inc. TimeGate Studios?, Inc., http://www.timegate.com/ is committed to being a premier content provider for all popular gaming platforms. Founded in 1998 in Houston, Texas, TimeGate has gained the recognition of industry leaders by meeting the demands of fantasy real-time strategy players above all else. Their debut (RTS) project, Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns, has earned nearly 30 awards for its innovation and superiority. Future projects for TimeGate Studios include expanding its existing line of strategy titles and entering the online multiplayer market.

About Strategy First, Inc.
Strategy First, Inc. is a leading developer and worldwide publisher of PC entertainment software. Founded in 1990, the company has grown rapidly, publishing major games in the industry while simultaneously developing its own in-house titles such as O.R.B., Disciples II, Nexagon: The Pit and Zero-G Marines. After winning numerous awards for games such as Disciples: Sacred Lands, Europa Universalis, Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns and Steel Beasts, Strategy First continues to push the gaming envelope with its own groundbreaking titles, while maintaining its reputation as a unique alternative for independent developers seeking to market their games to a worldwide audience.



Wednesday, May 01, 2002
 
[PressRelease] Steel Beasts Gold Edition (PC) Ships to Stores - posted by Erich Becker at 12:37 pm CDT

STEEL BEASTS GOLD EDITON SHIPS TO STORES NATIONWIDE

Montreal, Quebec. April 30th, 2002 - Strategy First and Esim Games announced today that a Special Gold Edition of the award-winning tank simulation, Steel Beasts has shipped to stores nationwide.

Released throughout North America's retail stores in 2000, Steel Beasts has taken the tank sim community by storm, winning numerous accolades, such as ?Best PC Simulation of 2000? from PC Gamer Magazine, Computer Games Magazine and winning numerous Editor?s Choice Awards from various online sites. It is still being used at the US Military Academy (West Point) to help train future armor officers.

As a detailed PC-based simulator of modern mechanized warfare, Steel Beasts centers 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.

The new and improved features that are included in this Special Steel Beasts Gold Edition are:

- Dramatically improved debriefing phase: better playback
features, and ability to view 3D world during debriefing
- Improved low level AI for vehicles and troops
- Added and improved features to make mission creation easier
and more powerful
(e.g. More events and triggers, nameable events and triggers, customizable ammo load-outs)
- Improved map graphic tools: all map graphics can now be
stretched, rotated and flipped with added pre-made square and ellipse map graphics.
- Significantly modified fire control system for the M1A1,
based on feedback from master gunners in the US Army
- Improved multiplayer performance
- Improved modeling of rounds
- Revised damage models based on feedback from armor experts
- Improved unit map symbols
- More convenient screenshot tool
- Improved joystick response, and added joystick centering hot
keys
- Dozens of missions not included in the original SB, and
better organization of missions.

Steel Beasts Gold will be distributed throughout North America by Infogrames. Strategy First is still in negotiations for a European distribution agreement. For more information, contact Stewart Braybrook, Director of European Operations at sbraybrook@strategyfirst.com .

For more information on the game and/or the series, log onto www.esimgames.com or www.strategyfirst.com .

About eSim Games
eSim Games, located in Sunnyvale, California, creates highly accurate, affordable simulators for the personal computer, which can be used by both civilians for entertainment purposes, and by the military as an inexpensive training tool. Steel Beasts is its first product, and work on Steel Beasts 2 is underway.

About Strategy First Inc.
Strategy First Inc. is a leading developer and worldwide publisher of entertainment software for the PC. Founded in 1990, the company has grown rapidly, publishing major games in the industry and simultaneously developing its own in-house titles such as O.R.B., Disciples II, Nexagon: The Pit and Zero-G Marines. After winning numerous awards for games such as Disciples: Sacred Lands, Europa Universalis, Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns and Steel Beasts, Strategy First continues to push the gaming envelope with its own groundbreaking titles, while maintaining its reputation as a unique alternative for independent developers seeking to market their games to a worldwide audience


 
[PressRelease] CDV Software Announces Necron (PC) - posted by Erich Becker at 12:34 pm CDT

CDV SOFTWARE ANNOUNCES "NEOCRON"

Futuristic Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game Ships This Fall for PC

CARY, NC - April 30, 2002 - CDV Software Entertainment, one of the leading German publishers and distributors of gaming software, announced today the cyberpunk massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG), "Neocron." Scheduled to ship this fall for PC, "Neocron" combines the best in role-playing and first-person shooter games with real-time combat and targeting.

"As citizens of Neocron, players run rampant in a gritty post-apocalyptic world," said Axel Rathgeber, producer of "Neocron." "The city's expansive environments open the door to fantastic story lines and boundless adventure. With unique gameplay that combines the character development of role-playing games with the fast-paced action of first-person shooters, 'Neocron' will offer an exciting online multiplayer experience."

About "Neocron"
"Neocron"'s MMORPG action is set within four districts of the dark and foreboding city of Neocron. From the barren outskirts to the sultry red-light district, the city's densely populated regions feature roaming mutants, brutal anarchists, and genetically engineered humans.

In the game, characters visit interactive nightclubs and outpost centers in more than 250 maps. Unique combat features include repairable armor implants and upgradeable weapons for greater destruction. Each clan acquires income by trading in the city districts, competing missions, and hunting dangerous monsters.

Additional features include:

* Combination of role-playing and first-person shooter elements with real time combat and targeting
* A practically unlimited number of weapon systems created through combinations and extensions, including modifiable pistols, assault rifles, mines, and lasers
* Four different character classes, each with its own attributes and special abilities: Private Eye, Spy, PSI-Monk, GenTank
* Customizable appearance features include gender, skin tone, clothing type and color
* Huge interactive areas, including the upscale ViaRosso, Pepper Park club district, and barren Outzone
* Balance of Power (BoP) engine lets players transform their actions into share values for their factions and clans
* NavRay system directs players to their destinations, a time saving device
* Game within a game: Players can face each other in deathmatch arenas (holomatches) without losing skills or energy for the actual game

More information about "Neocron" is available at www.cdv-neocron.de

About CDV Software Entertainment
Founded and headquartered in Karlsruhe, Germany with offices in London, U.K., CDV Software Entertainment AG is one of the leading publishers and distributors of PC software. The company's wholly owned subsidiary, CDV Software Entertainment USA, Inc. has offices in Cary, NC and Los Angeles, CA. In 2000, the Company successfully completed its initial public offering in Germany.

Its first three internationally published titles, "Sudden Strike," "Cossacks: European Wars," and "Sudden Strike Forever," were worldwide blockbusters, selling a combined total of over 1.2 million copies.

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[Mac] Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds Special Pre-Order Offer - posted by Erich Becker at 12:26 pm CDT

Star Wars Galactic Battleground will be going gold soon. Here is some information about the game, and the special offer LucasArts has put together for Mac Gamers:

As a special promotion, the first run of Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds for the Mac will include a 16 page Prima Hint Book in the box. This is a special offer for the Mac version. "LucasArts' Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds is an awesome real-time strategy game that is sure to be a hit on the Mac," says Michael Rogers, President of Aspyr. "The special Prima Hint Book is just a fun way to reward the diehard Mac fans who have been eagerly awaiting this game." The limited edition Prima Hint Book will only be available in the first copies of Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds for the Mac produced so be sure to preorder your copy ASAP. Don't miss out!

Preliminary Minimum System Requirements:
* Mac OS 8.6, Mac OS X 10.1
* CarbonLib 1.4 or higher
* 64 MB built-in memory
* G3 or G4 of 333 MHz or greater
* 4x CD-ROM compatible drive


 
[Mac] Return to Castle Wolfenstein Released for Macintosh - posted by Erich Becker at 12:23 pm CDT

Yesterday marked the release of Return to Castle Wolfenstein for the Macintosh gaming platform. The game puts you in the role of our hero, B.J., from the original Wolfenstein 3D back in the day. This time B.J. is enlisted in the OSA, and was assigned to infiltrate the castle and find out why the Nazis are making the surrounding area into such a huge archeological dig.

You can find out more about the game from the official Castle Wolfenstein website located here.

RETURN TO CASTLE WOLFENSTEIN MINIMUM SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS
•Mac OS 9.2 or later with virtual memory
•Mac OS X, 10.1 or later
•Power Mac G3/G4/iMac (Flat-Panel or later)/PowerBook G4 (Gigabit Ethernet or later)
•500 MHz or faster
•128mb of RAM
•3D Graphic Acceleration required (ATI Radeon, Nvidia GeForce or later)

Pick up your copy today.


Tuesday, April 30, 2002
 
[PressRelease] SimCity 4 Announced! - posted by Erich Becker at 2:49 pm CDT

Here it is, the press release announcing SimCity 4!

Enjoy:

REDWOOD CITY, CA--(INTERNET WIRE)--Apr 29, 2002 -- Electronic Arts today announced that the long-awaited 4th generation of the PC game SimCity™, SimCity™ 4, is in development at the company's Walnut Creek-based Maxis™ studio. Featuring new simulation and graphics engines, new regional game play and the new ability to track the lives of individual Sims as they go about their daily routine, SimCity 4 is the most realistic, powerful and personal SimCity experience ever. SimCity 4 will make its debut to industry insiders on May 22nd at the Electronic Entertainment Exposition in Los Angeles.

For the first time ever, players can follow a Sim as they go about their life in the city. Players can personalize their Sim and immediately move him into any area and watch him experience life in the city, first hand. Is he or she enjoying a happy existence in an urban utopia or enduring a futile fight for survival in the inner-city. A player's Sim will provide valuable clues to improving the city.

SimCity 4 will allow players to actually touch their handiwork and feel the pulse of their creation. Whether a metropolis is booming with expansion or decaying through neglect, SimCity 4's new simulation engine will give players immediate feedback so they can react to its every need. Individual buildings and their lots will now provide feedback to the player who lives there. Bigger, better and more relevant disasters are also available along with the ability to dispatch the Mayor, police or fire department to areas in the city where they are needed. Your every decision in this new SimCity has much more of an impact and gives you the ability to respond more effectively. Day and night, the movement in SimCity 4 is first-person, frenetic, palpable and unpredictable.


Friday, April 26, 2002
 
[PressRelease] Europa Universalis II Comes to the Mac - posted by Erich Becker at 10:24 am CDT

Success of Europa Universalis spawns Macintosh version

Paradox Entertainment has licensed the British developer Virtual ProgrammingLtd the right to convert the award-winning historical strategy game Europa Universalis II to Apple´s PowerMac. The game will be released for the christmas season.

Paradox Entertainment internally developed the Windows-version but has decided to licence the right to Virtual Programming Ltd who has specialist competence in converting into the MacOS.

- Europa Universalis has established itself as the ultimate historical real-time strategy game. With its sophisticated audience it is ideal for the Mac and we hope this will lead to more Mac versions of our games , says Theodore Bergquist, CEO of Paradox Entertainment.

- Virtual Programming Ltd are extremely pleased to bring Europa Universalis II to the Mac platform. Our goal is to seek quality, entertaining titles that will reward the Mac gamer, and Europa Universalis II is one such title. It is our hope that we can work with Paradox Entertainment in the future to see more of their great titles on the Mac platform, says Paul Lesurf, Managing Director of Virtual Programming Ltd.

Europa Universalis II has broadened the games horizons. The game spans more than four hundred years (1419-1820) and the player can choose to play any nation that ever existed in the world. That is over 100 playable nations, including the Japanese Shogunate, the Chinese Empire and African tribes! Several key features in the game are open for players to change according to their own tastes, such as historical event flow and scenario constructions, etc.

For a complete update of the content please visit our site www.europa-universalis.com

About Paradox Entertainment AB
Paradox Entertainment was founded in 1999 and is a fast growing developer based in Sweden. Paradox Entertainment has produced best selling and award-winning games such as Europa Universalis I and II and Airfix Dogfighter. Currently the company is producing Legion, Hearts of Iron and Crusader Kings. It also develops its brand portfolio containing well known brands such as Mutant Chronicles, Europa Universalis, Kult and Heavy Gear.


About Virtual Programming Ltd

Virtual Programming Ltd was established in 2000, with a view to developing high quality software for the Mac (and other) platforms. Having established a team of talented programmers and working closely with Apple and Softline UK, VP Ltd has the ideal network to develop, market and distribute quality products to the Mac community.


 
[Community] Games Xtreme Reviews Dungeon Siege (PC) - posted by Erich Becker at 10:22 am CDT

Games Xtreme have kicked up a review of Microsoft and Chris Taylor's new Hack and Slash adventure fest RPG.

The game has nailed the Editor's Choice award.

"Now Chris Taylor and Gas Powered Games bring us Dungeon Siege, a powerful and action packed romp through a seamless wilderness and caverns in true, hack and slash, Conan the Barbarian style. The Siege Engine is really a nice bit of work and it handles the change from outside to inside locations with nary a flicker of trouble, once the game has loaded you’ll never see another loading screen again. You can sit back, relax and enjoy the ride."


Related Links: See The Full Review!


 
[PressRelease] EA Announces Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 for PC, GCN, and XBox - posted by Erich Becker at 10:21 am CDT

EA BREAKS THE LAW BY REVEALING PLANS TO RELEASE NEED FOR SPEED HOT PURSUIT 2 ON THE PLAYSTATION 2, XBOX, NINTENDO GAMECUBE AND PC

REDWOOD CITY, Calif., April 25, 2002 - "Pull your vehicle over now!" EA plans to drive the highly anticipated Need For Speed(tm) Hot Pursuit 2 game for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system to PC, Xbox(tm) video game system from Microsoft and Nintendo GameCube(tm). All four titles will be published under the EA GAMES(tm) brand and will be available in late summer 2002.

Further building upon the franchises' award-winning legacy, Need For Speed Hot Pursuit 2 will feature classic open road racing with the added intensity of police intervention, as first seen in Need For Speed III Hot Pursuit. This year's game allows the player to select from over 20 licensed exotics from the world's most coveted manufacturers including the Ferrari 360 Spider(tm), Lamborghini Murcielago(tm) and Porsche® Carrera GT(tm).

Need For Speed Hot Pursuit 2 will feature five different gameplay modes: Quick Race, Single Challenge, Hot Pursuit, Championship and an all-new "Top Cop" mode for the Xbox, Nintendo GameCube and PC versions. This brand new mode allows players to actually "be the cop" by taking on a career as a high-speed highway patrolman by competing in over 30 events. Hot Pursuit and Championship modes also consist of over 30 challenging race events that if completed, the player will be rewarded with new cars, tracks and high performance upgrades. Need For Speed Hot Pursuit 2 will feature over 20 tracks, with up to 12 miles of road and environments ranging from the lush forests to the sandy beaches.

The PlayStation 2, Xbox and Nintendo GameCube versions will also feature a multiplayer mode with two-player split screen racing. The PC game will support up to eight-player multiplayer racing via LAN/Internet/Direct IP.

EA Seattle is developing Need For Speed Hot Pursuit 2 for the PC, Xbox and Nintendo GameCube. The PlayStation 2 version is being produced by EA Canada and developed by Black Box, a Vancouver-based development company. For more information on Need For Speed Hot Pursuit 2, visit the official product website at: www.needforspeed.com. Additional information can be found on the EA GAMES website at: www.eagames.com.


ABOUT ELECTRONIC ARTS
Electronic Arts (Nasdaq: ERTS), headquartered in Redwood City, California, is the world's leading interactive entertainment software company. Founded in 1982, Electronic Arts posted revenues of more than $1.3 billion for fiscal 2001. The company develops, publishes and distributes software worldwide for the Internet, personal computers and video game systems. Electronic Arts markets its products under four brand names: EA SPORTSTM, EA GAMESTM, EA SPORTS BIG(tm) and EA.COMSM. More information about EA's products and full text of press releases can be found on the Internet at http://www.info.ea.com.

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Thursday, April 25, 2002
 
[Community] Hardware Unlimited Reviews the Compex ire201 - posted by Erich Becker at 7:51 am CDT

Hardware-Unlimited, part of the 3D-Unlimited Network, has posted a review of the Compex ire201. This little device gives new life to IR connectivity to PDA's and other mobile devices. If the cradle seems a bit limiting, and you don't want to spend the money on a wireless setup, then the ire201 might just be the perfect thing.

Clip:
"Until recently, there were only two ways to access a network and the internet using a PDA without the confinement of the cradle. One way is to use a wireless networking card (and an access point), and the other is to have an IR port. The problem with the IR port is that the host system using it must be turned on. Here's where Compex steps in with the iRE 201. This standalone device utilizes two IR ports, and allows your portable device to access your network and the internet. It requires no host computer, since it is a standalone device. "


 
[PressRelease] EA & Prima Sign Exclusive Guide Agreement - posted by Erich Becker at 7:49 am CDT

PRIMA GAMES INKS EXCLUSIVE AGREEMENT WITH ELECTRONIC ARTS TO PUBLISH COMPUTER AND VIDEO GAME STRATEGY GUIDES

Two World Leaders Join Forces to Deliver Great Games & Guides to Consumers


ROSEVILLE, Calif., April 24, 2002 ¡V Prima Games, a division of Random House Inc., today announced that it has signed an exclusive, multi-continent agreement with world leading game publisher Electronic Arts (NASDAQ: ERTS) to write, publish and distribute official strategy guides for EA GAMES„·, EA SPORTS„· and EA SPORTS BIG„· branded titles. Financial terms of the two-year deal were not disclosed.

¡§We are pleased to be extending the relationship and naming Prima Games as EA¡¦s official strategy guide partner,¡¨ said Linda Chaplin, director of strategic sales at Electronic Arts. "Prima's successful track record with EA titles, ability to produce high quality strategy guides and outstanding distribution capabilities are a winning combination."

¡§Inking this global, multi-year agreement with EA speaks volumes to the quality of Prima Games¡¦ product and the value that it delivers to game consumers,¡¨ said Debra Kempker, president of Prima Games. ¡§Our leadership position, accomplished authors and flawless track record in bringing top-notch guides to market makes Prima Games the ideal partner for EA. It is a win-win for both companies as well as the millions of gamers worldwide.¡¨

Under the agreement, Prima Games will officially publish EA computer and video game strategy guides in North America, Europe and Australia.

Strategy guides are soft cover books that provide helpful hints and tips to consumers on how to play a specific PC or video game. Cost for these guides range from U.S. MSRP $14.99-$19.99.

About Electronic Arts
Electronic Arts (Nasdaq: ERTS), headquartered in Redwood City, California, is the world's leading interactive entertainment software company. Founded in 1982, Electronic Arts (EA) posted revenues of more than $1.3 billion for fiscal 2001. The company develops, publishes and distributes software worldwide for the Internet, personal computers and video game systems. Electronic Arts markets its products under four brand names: EA SPORTS, EA SPORTS BIG, EA GAMES and EA.COM. More information about EA's products and full text of press releases can be found on the Internet at http://www.info.ea.com.

About Prima Games
Prima Games, a division of Random House Inc., is the world's leading publisher of strategy guides for computer and console video games, with more than 900 titles published and over 50 million guides in print. High quality strategy guides, extensive retail distribution and relationships with top game developers and publishers have allowed Prima Games to claim the highest market share among strategy guide publishers. More information can be found on the Web at www.primagames.com.


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Tuesday, April 23, 2002
 
[PressRelease] Massive Upgrade Released for Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns - posted by Erich Becker at 10:01 am CDT

For Immediate Release

TIMEGATE STUDIOS AND STRATEGY FIRST RELEASE A MASSIVE UPGRADE FOR THE AWARD WINNING KOHAN: IMMORTAL SOVEREIGNS

Montreal, Quebec. April 23rd, 2002 TimeGate Studios and Strategy First announced today that a new upgrade for the award winning Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns has been released and is available on www.timegate.com http://www.timegate.com and www.strategyfirst.com http://www.strategyfirst.com . Coming a year after the initial release of the product, this upgrade should please fans of this ground-breaking title.

The new upgrade includes 13 new heroes for custom play and multiplayer; adds tell commands so that players can control AI allies; increases strength of the AI with build templates and enhanced AI system; tweaks aspects of gameplay, such as changing companies in pressed/column movement to lower priority targets and reduces the guard zone of settlement buildings; reduces the upgrade cost of Citadels and the Nationalist City; improves the Grenadier, Elite Guard, Wraith, Lich and Melee Kohan heroes; and tweaks the Elite Bowman, Ranger and Pathfinder.

After having won several gaming nominations and awards from top gaming magazines and Industry organizations such as the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences and the Game Developer's Conference, TimeGate Studios is still topping the charts with its innovative gameplay.

TimeGate's development team is committed to providing its players with continuous improvements and upgrades to enhance the Kohan experience. For more information about all of the Kohan titles: Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns (KIS), Kohan: Ahriman's Gift and KIS Special Awards Edition, log onto www.timegate.com http://www.timegate.com or www.strategyfirst.com http://www.strategyfirst.com .


About TimeGate Studios, Inc.
TimeGate Studios, Inc., http://www.timegate.com/ is committed to being a premier content provider for all popular gaming platforms. Founded in 1998 in Houston, Texas, TimeGate has gained the recognition of industry leaders by meeting the demands of fantasy real-time strategy players above all else. Their debut (RTS) project, Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns, has earned nearly 30 awards for its innovation and superiority, including several 'Strategy Game of the Year' awards. Future projects for TimeGate Studios include expanding its existing line of strategy titles and entering the online multiplayer market.

About Strategy First, Inc.
Strategy First, Inc. is a leading developer and worldwide publisher of PC entertainment software. Founded in 1990, the company has grown rapidly, publishing major games in the industry while simultaneously developing its own in-house titles such as O.R.B., Disciples II, Nexagon: The Pit and Zero-G Marines. After winning numerous awards for games such as Disciples: Sacred Lands, Europa Universalis, Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns and Steel Beasts, Strategy First continues to push the gaming envelope with its own groundbreaking titles, while maintaining its reputation as a unique alternative for independent developers seeking to market their games to a worldwide audience.


 
[Guides] Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer Guide - posted by Erich Becker at 8:17 am CDT

Recently Microsoft released the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA), to analyze Windows 2000/XP (& NT4 remotely) systems for potential security issues, e.g. Hotfixes not installed.

This short guide posted at 3D Spotlight will take you though configuring stand-alone PCs to use this tool.

Related Links: Take a peek at the Guide.


 
[Community] Games Xtreme Reviews Transworld Surf (Xbox) - posted by Erich Becker at 8:16 am CDT

Games Xtreme has posted their review of Transworld Surf for the Microsoft Xbox. Here is a small clip, the full link is below:

"The first big disappointment for people used to hundreds of tricks is that Transworld Surf doesn't contain the oodleplex of possibilities offered by most other extreme sports games. You can do simple stuff like 'Carves', which I am reliably informed involves big, sweeping turns on the wave (EEEEASY!) or you can 'air' in a similar manner to skateboarding games, using a grab or a kickflip-style move. However, there are only 6 grabs and three flips available, with a further three special tricks that vary between surfers. This might sound like a lot, but it's nothing compared to the multiplicity of variations available in Matt Hoffman's Pro BMX! Add to that there are only two ways to balance on top of the wave, and you're left with a pretty limited range of expression."


Related Links: See the Full Review!



Wednesday, April 17, 2002
 
[PressRelease]Strategy First and Third Wire Productions sign Publishing Agreement - posted by Erich Becker at 11:46 am CDT

STRATEGY FIRST TAKES TO THE SKIES SIGNING A WORLDWIDE PUBLISHING AGREEMENT FOR A NEW FLIGHT SIM

Montreal, Quebec. April 17th, 2002 ? Strategy First and Third Wire Productions are pleased to announce that they have signed a worldwide publishing agreement for their highly anticipated flight simulation game, Strike Fighters: Project 1, scheduled for release later this summer. Strike Fighters: Project 1 is a new jet combat game designed by the lead designer of European Air War (Best Simulation Game of 1998) and Jane?s Longbow 2 (Best Simulation Game of 1997).

Strike Fighters is a multi-faceted flight-simulation game that features one of the most versatile combat aircraft of all time ? the McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II ? a lean, loud and versatile aircraft that saw action as both an interceptor and strike fighter. The core of the game is traditional combat flight-simulation in which the player takes command of a thundering jet fighter and engages in aerial dogfight with enemy fighters while seeking and destroying ground targets.

The fictional campaign is set in the 1960s, when aviation technology was still primitive, but advancing at breakneck speed. Weapon selection within the game matches historical availability, offering a few select missiles and guided weapons later, but focusing primarily on mounted guns. As any former combat pilot can attest, the weapons of that era challenged the delivery skills of even top pilots, and most air battles involved visceral ?in-your-face? gunfights in which outmaneuvering opponents remains the key to victory and survival. Strike Fighters takes this type of close combat to an unparalleled height by realistically modeling flight physics and aircraft systems, adding an overall sense of immersion to the game.

The game?s newly developed graphics engine employs the latest DirectX technology and renders scenes in rich, 32-bit color, with spectacular lighting effects, intricate texture layers, and reflective mapping. All flyable aircraft are modeled with exceptional detail and accuracy, right down to customizable squadron art and kill tallies.

Scheduled for release in Summer 2002, Strike Fighters: Project 1 will be distributed exclusively throughout North America by Infogrames. European distribution is still being negotiated. If you are interested in Strike Fighters for European distribution, please contact the Director of European Operations, Stewart Braybrook at sbraybrook@strategyfirst.com . For more information on the game, log onto www.thirdwire.com or www.strategyfirst.com .


About Third Wire Productions
Third Wire Productions, Inc. is a software development company formed in 1999 for the purpose of creating high-quality multimedia entertainment products, such as flight-simulation and strategy games for personal computers. Third Wire Productions, Inc. is a Texas C-Corporation based in Austin, Texas. The company spent its first year shopping around various game design ideas, while working on prototypes and building up its technology base. With the technology base established, Third Wire Productions is now working on a new and exciting project. In addition to working on its own project, Third Wire also provides consulting and contract work, lending its technical expertise and artistic talents to other companies in and outside of game industry.

About Strategy First Inc.
Strategy First Inc. is a leading developer and worldwide publisher of entertainment software for the PC. Founded in 1990, the company has grown rapidly, publishing major games in the industry and simultaneously developing its own in-house titles such as O.R.B., Disciples II, Nexagon: The Pit and Zero-G Marines. After winning numerous awards for games such as Disciples: Sacred Lands, Europa Universalis, Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns and Steel Beasts, Strategy First continues to push the gaming envelope with its own groundbreaking titles, while maintaining its reputation as a unique alternative for independent developers seeking to market their games to a worldwide audience.


 
[Mac] MacDX Announced Allows Fast, Porting from Windows to MacOS - posted by Erich Becker at 11:43 am CDT

Local Mac guru, and our esteemed Webmaster, Toby Davis brought this article to my attention earlier today. It seems that a technology company called Coderus has developed a technology that allows for a DirectX reliant Windows program to be easily ported over to either Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X. The full synopsis, appearing here, shows just how long the wait time would be in turnaround if this technology was used widely enough by developers and publishers.

So what does this mean? It means that Mac gamers, wouldn't have to wait months after the release of the Windows product to play their favorite games. While it won't drive the Mac to the top of the gaming spectrum any time soon, it would allow for easy, quick XBox and Windows based games to be ported.

Check out the link above for the full synopsis.

 


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