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June 26, 2002 - July 15, 2002 - See More Archived News

Monday, July 15, 2002
[PCGaming] Mechwarrior 4 Clan 'Mech Pak Goes Gold - posted by Andy Grieser at 1:24 pm CDT

Clan Troops Set to Reload - "MechWarrior 4: Clan 'Mech Pak" Goes Gold

"MechWarrior 4®" fans should prepare for another high-powered attack from the Clan forces as Microsoft Game Studios announced that the "MechWarrior 4: Clan 'Mech Pak" has gone gold and will arrive in stores in early August.

The "Clan 'Mech Pak" is comprised of new BattleMechs and technology compatible with "MechWarrior 4: Vengeance" and the "MechWarrior 4: Black Knight" expansion. The four new 'Mechs featured are:
Masakari - Easily identified by its squat torso, jutting head, and broad chest, this 'Mech has become notorious for its deadly accuracy
Kodiak - A large, fast-moving Assault 'Mech that carries impressive medium-range firepower
Arctic Wolf - Loaded with SRMs, this BattleMech can rapidly close with an enemy and shower it with more than 40 missiles
Cauldron-Born - Named for the unstoppable zombies of Irish myth, this 'Mech can take immense damage and remain operational
This Pak also brings into play a new weapon and sensor package:
Streak MRM - A new, homing version of the Medium Range Missile, made possible by Clan technology
Enhanced Optics - This component of the new Clan 'Mechs gives the MechWarrior a larger field of view when zooming in on distant targets
Lastly, the "Clan 'Mech Pak" features an all new multi-player map, the Factory in which 'Mechs battle it out amid the ruins of a huge factory on Solaris

The best-selling, award-winning "MechWarrior 4: Vengeance" is based on the popular game of mechanized combat from FASA Studios™. Cyberlore, the team behind the successful "MechWarrior 4: Black Knight" expansion, developed the Paks in conjunction with the FASA "MechWarrior 4" team. The "MechWarrior 4: Inner Sphere 'Mech Pak" is now available
and both Paks are playable with the upcoming "MechWarrior 4: Mercenaries .
" Both have an ESRB rating of "T" for Teen and a suggested retail price of $12.95. For more information, please visit: http://www.microsoft.com/games/mechpaks/ .

[Community] Cyberathlete Professional League Kicks Off Summer Championship Event - posted by Andy Grieser at 8:14 am CDT

Cyberathlete professional league kicks-off SUMMER CHAMPIONSHIP EVENT

Record number of Registrants; Record Attendance Expected from All 50 States and More Than 60 Countries

Dallas, Texas - July 15, 2002 - Intense competition. Ardent fans and spectators. Major sponsors and big money. Yes, it's time for The CPL's Pentium(r) 4 Processor Summer Championship 2002 Event.

The Cyberathlete Professional League (CPL), the global leader in competitive computer gaming, announced today the final details of its highly anticipated Pentium 4 Processor Summer Championship 2002 Event. The five-day event will take place Saturday, July 20, to Wednesday, July 24, 2002 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Dallas, Texas.

Over 3,500 people are registered to attend, approximately 85 percent representing all 50 of the United States and 15 percent representing 63 countries including Canada, Germany, Brazil, Sweden, United Kingdom and Venezuela. With $100,000 in prize money, the competition is expected to be fierce.

"With the CPL's Pentium 4 Summer Championship's record level attendance and big name sponsors, we are one step closer to elevating professional computer gaming to a full-fledged sport," said Angel Munoz, founder and president of the CPL. "Teams from all over the world will aggressively pursue their dream of pro-gaming -- a great way to celebrate what is now our fifth anniversary in the sport."

Intel Corporation, a lead sponsor of the CPL, will provide more than 120 high-performance Pentium 4 processor-based systems.

"As with any professional sport, a professional gamer needs not only world class skill and dedication, but the best equipment to gain a competitive advantage. Professional gamers need to have total faith and
trust in their equipment, so they can be 'in the zone' and focused on the game," said Brian Fravel, consumer desktop products manager, Intel. "With the Pentium 4 processor, we provide the world's fastest desktop processor with world-class performance for these world-class competitors, leaving nothing to chance."

Tournament Games
The main tournament game will be the popular Half-Life modification Counter-Strike version 1.5, developed by Valve Software (www.valvesoftware.com). More than 600
gamers will be competing. Total cash prize for the Counter-Strike tournament is $100,000.

"It's an honor to have Counter-Strike selected for the CPL Summer Championships," said Doug Lombardi, director of marketing at Valve Software. "The 2001 season was an incredible success, capped off with a world class Counter-Strike finals last December. We're looking forward to taking things to the next level in 2002."

The CPL's Pentium 4 Summer Event will also host a music concert, a computer case competition with $10,000 in cash prizes, workshops, a large spectator arena with four 100" projection screens and an 800-computer BYOC area.

The complete event schedule is located at:

The Summer Event is sponsored by Intel and co-sponsored by Plantronics, Micro Exchange, BAWLS, SoundMax, Xabre and NetFire.com.

Merchandise sponsors include: Logitech, Altec Lansing, Belkin and Netgear.

[ESCmag] New Editors' Round Table Up - posted by Andy Grieser at 5:56 am CDT

What happens when four game-site editors stop being polite and start being real? A really cool idea for a reality TV show, but also a weekly Editors' Round Table discussion. Check out this week's installment.

The Editors' Round Table is a gathering of a few Head Editors from in and around the Internet Gaming community to voice their opinions. This week's guests include Ascully.com Editor Paul Hayes, ESCmag Editor Andy Grieser, The Wargamer's Chris Abele, and Gaming Illustrated's own Sean Gibson.

Friday, July 12, 2002
[School]Art Institute of California Now Acception Apps for Class in Game Art & Design - posted by Erich Becker at 1:23 pm CDT


-Students Learning to Create Art, Characters And Environments Needed for New Ultra-Rich Video Games-

SAN FRANCISCO (July 10, 2002) – The extraordinary power of new game consoles and computers means that video games now can feature ultra-realistic, high-resolution visuals designed to blow the minds of gamers who’ve seen it all. As a result, the game industry is needing new computer artists who combine artistic and digital skills with a fervent passion for creating – and playing – the next generation of video games.

The Art Institute of California – San Francisco (www.aicasf.aii.edu) is answering that need through its new bachelor’s degree program in Game Art & Design. The program, which started in January, has attracted students from throughout the United States looking to learn the new style of art used in interactive entertainment.

Students in the program start out by studying color theory, drawing, sculpture and other art fundamentals. The program then adds courses in 3D modeling, animation, texturing, scripting, storytelling, storyboarding and other aspects of character design and game level design. Courses include “2D Animation,” “3D Modeling,” “Game Modeling and Animation,” “3D Character Animation,” “Motion and Lighting,” “Programming for the Artist,” “Level Design,” “Interface Design for Games” and “Interactive Game Prototyping.” In order to develop a well-rounded knowledge base useful in any creative career, students also take general education courses in mathematics, the social sciences, psychology, art history, philosophy, the humanities and other areas.

The video game industry is on track for a record year in 2002, with global sales projected to increase by 12 percent to $31 billion, according to a recent report by Informa Media Group. In the United States, the launch of three new gaming systems fueled sales to shoot up nearly 43 percent to $9.4 billion in 2001, reports market researcher NPD.

The school’s location in San Francisco, a hotbed of the game industry, is a natural fit for students studying in this field. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, 11 of the top 25 video game publishers are in the San Francisco Bay Area. Together, these Bay Area companies sell 42 percent of all games in the United States.

"Millions of people worldwide play games on a daily basis and the game sector is a significant part of the overall entertainment industry,” said Mary Clarke-Miller, academic director for new media programs at The Art Institute of California - San Francisco. "The field of interactive entertainment offers exciting opportunities for visual artists who can bring traditional artistic skills into the digital realm.”

The phenomenal growth of the game industry reflects the fact that games are no longer child's play. According to the Interactive Digital Software Association, 60 percent of Americans play video games either on consoles, hand-helds or PCs. Of those gamers, 61 percent are adults, 43 percent are women and the average age is 28.

The Game Art & Design program curriculum in San Francisco was designed with input from an industry advisory board from the game and animation fields. Experts with experience at Electronic Arts, LucasArts, Sega of America, BioWare, Double Fine, Macromedia, Konami of America, Ronin Entertainment, Terra Lycos, Pixar, PDI/DreamWorks and the International Game Developers Association (IGDA) have reviewed the curriculum and offered input from the industry’s perspective.

The Art Institute of California – San Francisco continues to forge relationships with a variety of game companies and industry leaders to further connect students with the game industry. Representatives from the school recently attended the first-ever Bay Area College Summit hosted by Electronic Arts to discuss educational trends, skills and needs of game employers. In addition, the school recently hosted more than 100 local game developers and students during the IGDA’s San Francisco Bay Area chapter meeting held at the school. This event featured a panel discussion about “The Evolving Role of the Game Artist” with guests from leading local game companies.

Potential students may now apply for entry into the Game Art & Design program for this Fall quarter, which starts Oct. 7, by calling (888) 493-3261, (415) 865-0198 or visiting www.aicasf.aii.edu for admission details. The school also is accepting applications for its degree programs in Multimedia & Web Design, Media Arts & Animation, Graphic Design and Fashion Design.

Related Links: Visit Them Online, Today!

[Community] Italian Job (PS1) Review @ Gaming-Unlimited - posted by Erich Becker at 1:15 pm CDT

Gaming-Unlimited, part of the 3D-Unlimited Network, has just posted a review of The Italian Job for PS1; arguably the best $10 game ever to be released on any console.

Related Links: See the Full Review

[PressRelease] UbiSoft to Bring Back Chessmaster 9000 (PC) This Fall - posted by Erich Becker at 1:04 pm CDT

Ubi Soft's Legendary Chessmaster® Returns This Fall

New Features and 3D Graphics Make The Best-Selling Chess Franchise In History Even Better!

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - July 12, 2002 - Ubi Soft Entertainment, one of the world's largest video game publishers, today announced that it is in the final stages of development for Chessmaster 9000 for the PC. Featuring challenging gameplay and 2 CDs worth of unrivalled personal instruction and chess resource material to elevate your game, Chessmaster 9000 is a teacher, mentor and ultimate opponent that provides countless hours of interactive competition and fun. Chessmaster 9000 for PC is scheduled to ship worldwide this fall.

"Players of all skill levels will enjoy Chessmaster 9000 as they discover the fun of mastering the game of chess," said Laurent Detoc, president of Ubi Soft Inc. "With over 5 million units sold worldwide, the Chessmaster franchise is in a class by itself as the premier brand and undisputed world champion of chess."

The newest edition of the best-selling chess software franchise of all time, Chessmaster 9000, introduces players to the rules and strategies of chess while building their skills through fun yet comprehensive tutorials. Beginners as well as seasoned chess players will enjoy the many features, challenging gameplay and personal instruction that have made Chessmaster the world's most popular chess program.

About Chessmaster 9000
Since the first version appeared for the PC in 1986, Chessmaster has been the dominant chess franchise in the world, selling more than 5 million units and winning numerous awards. Chessmaster 9000 builds on the strong foundation of its predecessors by adding many new tools to help players master the game of chess, including a new course on the Psychology of Competition by International Master Josh Waitzkin, a new Endgame Quiz from five-time chess champ and Grand Master Larry Evans, and a new Blunder Alert feature that immediately notifies players of better moves when they move their pieces into danger. Additionally, new online features include a free matchmaking service via ubi.com, special chat events, and rated games online.

About Ubi Soft Entertainment
Ubi Soft Entertainment is an international producer, publisher and distributor of interactive entertainment products. A leading company in the multimedia industry, Ubi Soft's strong and diversified line-up has grown considerably, as has Ubi Soft itself. As well as steadfastly continuing to partner with several high-profile companies, Ubi Soft has also confirmed its presence on the global market by developing its own exceptional properties. Founded in 1986 in France, Ubi Soft is now present on every continent, both through offices in 22 different countries including the United States, Brazil, Morocco, Germany and China and through sales of products in over 50 countries. The group is dedicated to delivering high-quality, cutting-edge video game titles to consumers around the world. To learn more, visit www.ubi.com.

©2002 Ubi Soft, Inc. All rights reserved. Ubi Soft Entertainment and the Ubi Soft logo are registered trademarks and Chessmaster is a trademark of Ubi Soft, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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[ESCmag] New Editor's Column Up - posted by Andy Grieser at 8:01 am CDT

This week, Andy answers reader e-mail about pay-to-read sites, Jedi Knight II movies, Sam & Max and horny coeds. Read it, and increase your breast size/bust size/wealth!

[Community] New Reviews at ThrustWorld - posted by Andy Grieser at 7:54 am CDT

The guys at ThrustWorld have a few new reviews up. Check out their opinion of the VideoLogic DigiTheatre speaker system and BioWare's RPG Neverwinter Nights.

Wednesday, July 10, 2002
[Community] GamesXtreme Reviews Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura (PC) - posted by Erich Becker at 2:09 pm CDT

GamesXtreme has just put up a review of Troika Games' "Arcanum: Of Steamworks & Magick Obscura," with a rating of 93%.

Here's a brief blurb:

I've been waiting for a decent RPG fix to come along that doesn't follow the traditional D&D standard that so many adhere to in more recent releases, and I have found the fix in Arcanum. If this game is available in your area, and you've a craving for some old-fashioned CRPG goodness, pick it up.

Related Links: See the Full Review Now!

[PressRelease]Prima Games Signs Exclusive Agreement with Acclaim - posted by Erich Becker at 2:07 pm CDT

Prima Games today announced that it has signed an exclusive, worldwide publishing agreement with Acclaim Entertainment to print, distribute and market strategy guides for four upcoming titles across multiple platforms. Financial terms of the three-year deal were not disclosed.

Strategy guides to be published over the next six months include: Turok Evolution, Vexx, Legends of Wrestling 2 and Dave Mirra BMX XXX.

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.

[PressRelease]NCSoft to Publish Trade Wars: Dark Millennium - posted by Erich Becker at 2:06 pm CDT

NCsoft to Publish Realm Interactive's Trade Wars: Dark Millennium Action Oriented RPG Will Come to Life in a Unique Massively Multiplayer Online Experience

AUSTIN, Texas, July 10, 2002---NCsoft(tm) Corporation, the world's largest independent online game company announced today that it will publish Trade Wars: Dark Millennium(tm) (working title) from Realm Interactive, LLC(tm).

Trade Wars(tm) features a fast-paced action RPG combat experience set in an enormous virtual world where players are able to explore the vastness of space as well as mysterious uncharted planets, a first for the massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) genre.

"Trade Wars: Dark Millennium is set on both planetary and space environments that look as if they came straight out of a science fiction movie," said NCsoft President Kim Taek-Jin. "Gamers who are used to fantasy online games will soon be able to experience a new form of entertainment with Trade Wars. With its unique action oriented role-playing style and heavy emphasis on player questing, we believe it will significantly grow the online game market."

"We're thrilled to be part of the NCsoft publishing family," said Salvatore Sferlazza, COO of Realm Interactive. "NCsoft has a proven track record in publishing subscription-based online games. We can't imagine a better partner for helping us launch Trade Wars to a global marketplace." For more information on Trade Wars: Dark Millennium visit www.tradewars.com.

About NCsoft

Headquartered in Seoul, South Korea, NCsoft Corp. is the world's largest independent online game company. Established in 1997, NCsoft has leaped to become the world's leading online game software company. In Korea, its blockbuster hit game Lineage(tm) commands a 42% market share and attracts the greatest number of concurrent users in the world. Earlier this year, NCsoft announced plans to provide service for Sony Online Entertainment's massively popular EverQuest® in Korea, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Currently NCsoft is positioning itself to fund online titles for worldwide distribution, and is now actively recruiting more subscription-based online titles for publishing in Asia and other territories. NCsoft is a public company and is traded on the KOSDAQ Korean stock exchange. In fiscal 2001, NCsoft posted revenues of 124,735,958,000 Korean won or approximately US$95 million. More information about NCsoft can be found at www.ncsoft.net.

About Realm Interactive, LLC

Established in 2000, Realm Interactive is a game development studio based out of Phoenix, Arizona. Realm Interactive's team is focused on developing its first title Trade Wars: Dark Millennium (working title). For more information, visit www.realminteractive.com.

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[Announcement] nVidia To Sponser First Machinima Film Festival - posted by Erich Becker at 2:03 pm CDT


MESQUITE, Texas - July 10, 2002 - The Academy of Machinima Arts & Sciences (AMAS), an organization that provides advocacy, education and community building awareness for the entertainment medium known as Machinima: the art or technique of film making using real-time 3D virtual environments, has teamed up with NVIDIA (R) Corporation, the worldwide leader in visual processing solutions, to host the first Machinima Film Festival on Saturday, Aug. 17, at the Trail Dust Restaurant in Mesquite, Texas.

The one-day event will include screenings of Machinima films, workshops hosted by Machinima filmmakers, special screenings, talks with award-winning independent filmmakers and kiosks where attendees can take a crack at making their own Machinima films. The event will culminate in an awards ceremony where some of the best Machinima filmmakers will be recognized for their creative artistry in this new and powerful entertainment medium that's set to revolutionize the world of animation.

"The Machinima Film Festival marks the beginning of a definitive event where all Machinima filmmakers will have a platform to show-off their creations," said Sanford Russell, senior director of partner marketing at NVIDIA. "This event recognizes 3D as a true art form and we're pleased to see the Machinima film community taking advantage of our graphics processors. We look forward to forging a long-term relationship with the Machinima community to provide them with the best possible tool set for realizing their creative visions."

Throughout the day attendees will be able to view films, attend workshops, visit kiosks set up in the reception tent to give Machinima movie making a try and speak with the Machinima filmmakers. Powered by NVIDIA's graphics muscle and the Machinima making tools created by Fountainhead Entertainment, visitors will be given a chance to make and take their own Machinima creations home.

The event will also feature a historical retrospective of Machinima filmmaking produced by Fountainhead Entertainment that will be shown at the awards ceremony. Designed to recognize excellence in Machinima filmmaking, entrants' work will be judged in 10 categories: Best Picture, Best Direction, Best Writing, Best Acting, Best Sound, Best Editing, Best Visual Design, Best Independent Film Effort and Best Technical Achievement (software/hardware vendor-oriented). An Honorary Award will also be given to an individual whose contributions have significantly impacted the Machinima arts.

Award guidelines are available at www.machinima.org. The submission deadline is August 5, 2002. A silent auction of popular technology products and memorabilia will be held throughout the evening. Money raised at the auction will benefit AMAS. Additional information about the art of Machinima and the First Machinima Film Festival is available at www.machinima.org.

About The Academy of Machinima Arts & Sciences

Headquartered in New York, the organization was co-founded in 2002 by Paul Marino, an Emmy Award-winning animator. His work with the ILL Clan has received much recognition, including top honors at Showtime Networks' 2001 Alternative Media Festival. The Academy of Machinima Arts & Sciences was established to promote, organize and recognize the growth of Machinima filmmaking and filmmakers. To learn more about Machinima, visit www.machinima.org.

About Fountainhead Entertainment

Privately held, Fountainhead Entertainment develops and produces animation, documentaries, and specializes in new media. With focus into combining the best elements of traditional media with new emerging forms, Fountainhead Entertainment is dedicated to supporting creative achievement. Check out more about Fountainhead Entertainment at www.fountainheadent.com.

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Tuesday, July 09, 2002
[PressRelease] Firaxis Licenses NetImmerse Graphics Engine for Future Titles - posted by Erich Becker at 8:24 am CDT

Firaxis Licenses NetImmerse
For Upcoming Game Titles

HUNT VALLEY, Md., July 8, 2002 -- Firaxis Games, one of the world's leading game development companies, has licensed the NetImmerse 3D graphics engine and toolkit for multiple future titles. Firaxis was founded in 1996 by veteran gaming executive Jeff Briggs, and Sid Meier, known as the father of computer gaming.

Firaxis is responsible for such critically acclaimed titles as Sid Meier's Civilization III, Sid Meier's SimGolf, Sid Meier's Gettysburg!, and Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri. The company selected the NetImmerse engine after extensively researching many different options, according to Mike Gibson, director of development for Firaxis.

"NetImmerse has been tested in multiple released products, has excellent documentation and support, has a simple interface and gentle learning curve, is portable to multiple platforms, and is written in elegant code that's easy to customize," Gibson says. "NetImmerse provides a strong foundation that allows us to write targeted code for some incredible games we have in the works."

"We are very excited that Firaxis selected NetImmerse," says John Austin, NDL's president. "Firaxis employs extremely talented programmers who have the expertise to develop their own graphics engine. This makes Firaxis' licensing of NetImmerse especially significant. It's yet another indication that top-tier developers understand they can deliver hit titles and compelling games with NetImmerse."

Firaxis Games, home of legendary designer Sid Meier, creates fun, intelligent computer games that live in the imaginations of people the world over. Headquartered in Hunt Valley, Maryland, Firaxis has created such hit games as Sid Meier's Gettysburg!, Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri, Sid Meier's Alien Crossfire and Sid Meier's Antietam!. The company has just released the highly anticipated Sid Meier's Civilization III (published by Infogrames) and Sid Meier's SimGolf (published by Electronic Arts). For more information on Firaxis Games visit www.firaxis.com.

NDL has been responsible for major developments in 3D graphics technology incorporated into leading PC and 3D gaming software. The company's NetImmerse graphics engine and game development software has been used for such critically acclaimed titles as Mythic Entertainment's Dark Age of Camelot, Irrational Games' Freedom Force, Totally Games' Star Trek Bridge Commander, and Bethesda Softworks' The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind. Visit www.ndl.com for more information.


[PressRelease] New Clan Patch for Black & White to be Released July 13th - posted by Erich Becker at 8:21 am CDT


Lionhead Studios is to release a multiplayer Clan Patch on www.bwgame.com on 13th July. The multiplayer Clan Patch has been designed to make multiplayer games shorter and more intense. It will also make victories and defeats more clear cut.

The Patch enables you to choose from a large list of winning conditions. These range from the number of villagers you kill to the amount of Prayer power you gain or even the total number of Wonders you build. The selection of one or more winning conditions adds hugely to the gameplay element and allows you to 'customise' games with ease.

The Clan Patch is small enough to download and is free. In addition Lionhead have organised two competitions to run in conjunction with the launch of the Patch. This patch supersedes the first patch and incorporates all improvements from it.

You can pre-register your Clan now at http://clans.bwgame.com. It is not necessary to register a clan to take advantage of the patch as you will be able to play online as a registered user using the new winning conditions. There are prizes to be won both for registered clans and for those playing as individuals.

In the run-up to the launch all Clan owners can create a Clan logo to identify their team. Anyone entering this into a competition will have the chance of winning one of three exclusive Black & White t-shirts signed by Peter Molyneux. For more details: http://www2.bwgame.com/bw/COMPETITION

In a separate competition, two lucky winners will get a top of the range multimedia PC donated by Intel (for more information on Intel visit (http://www.intel.com/). One will be awarded the player who has achieved the highest number of credits on 30th August at 5.00pm BST.

The other PC will be sent to the leader of the winning Clan. For more details: http://clans.bwgame.com/PCCOMPETITION

Lionhead has designed this new Patch solely to improve Black & White multiplayer games and is keen for you to experience this leap forward in online B&W gaming.

Related Links: Register Your Clan Now!

[Community] TechSpot Reviews Creative's Soundblaster Extigy - posted by Erich Becker at 8:18 am CDT

While the Audigy is Creative’s latest PCI Soundcard, Extigy is their first external Soundcard. Though seemingly having much in common feature wise with the Audigy, the Extigy is NOT an external Audigy and this review will cover why not as well as what it is & how they differ. The Extigy also features some great stand-alone capabilities, not just the fact that thanks to a USB interface it can just as be easily used with a laptops or as a Dolby Digital decoder for your DVD Player, Xbox or whatever.

Related Links: Check out TechSpot's review here:

Tuesday, July 02, 2002
[MacGaming] Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds is Shipping for Mac - posted by Erich Becker at 8:55 am CDT

This is no Jedi Mind Trick. Star Wars® Galactic Battlegrounds™ is now shipping! Thanks again to Brad Oliver, of Westlake Interactive, who did a great job on the conversion.

As a special promotion, the first run of Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds for the Mac that shipped included a 16 page Prima Hint Book in the box. This was a special offer for the Mac version only. we have a few copies still available, via the Aspyr online store so try get your order in soon.

The destiny of a galaxy hangs in the balance and you're in command. Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds lets you lead the armies of Star Wars to victory in intense, real-time strategy clashes. Enter the fray as Darth Vader and the Galactic Empire, the Rebel Alliance with a legion of Jedi, the greedy Trade Federation, the Royal Naboo and other civilizations in campaigns that will determine the final outcome of the Galactic Civil War. You are able to manage your resources and upgradeable technology into your strategy, such as Wookiee ingenuity, advanced Gungan biotechnology, and Jedi stamina. The action continues as you are able to command X-wing fighters, TIE fighters, Imperial Walkers, and other famed Star Wars vehicles. Star Wars Galactic
Battlegrounds: Face your destiny!

Features include:
* Epic real-time strategy set against a backdrop of the entire Star Wars saga
* Conflicts involve six key civilizations: Galactic Empire, Rebel Alliance, Wookiees, Gungans, Royal Naboo and Trade Federation
* Execute your campaign over land, sea and air with over 300 different units and structures in single-player campaigns, skirmishes and multiplayer battles
* Combat arenas extend from interstellar asteroids and aerial encounters to submerged cities and ground battles
* Deploy vast legions of units into battle-up to 200 per side- with units that can include bounty hunters, Jedi Knights, stormtroopers, X-wings, AT-ATs, snowspeeders, AT-STs, Wookiee Kas tanks and droids
* Manage your resources and integrate the power of upgradeable technology into your strategy, such as Wookiee ingenuity, advanced Gungan biotechnology and Jedi stamina. Each technology level brings new wonders and new forces.
* Accessible gameplay built upon the familiar RTS engine adapted from Ensemble's popular Age of Empires' series
* Use the scenario editor to create custom single- or multiplayer battlegrounds with virtually any Star Wars units and settings

Being a Star Wars fan there is just something about seeing all the characters that you have grown to love, or despise, at your disposal. And, quite frankly, it's just cool to be able to command storm troopers or lead Wookiees. The Wookiees rock!

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

The game has been rated T, for Teen (13+), by the ESRB.

Related Links: Thanks Again to Aspyr

[MacGaming] The Sims: Vacation Announced for Mac - posted by Erich Becker at 8:54 am CDT

In conversion This week Aspyr announced The Sims Vacation Expansion Pack is coming to the Mac. The game is currently at the Beta stage. Mark Krenek of Westlake Interactive is heading up the Mac conversion. Heck, if you don't have time to take your own vacation this year, let The Sims do it for you!

Pack your bags because you're taking the Sims on the vacation of a lifetime. Better yet, the first Vacation of a lifetime. Enjoy beautiful, fully customizable destinations such as Vacation Island's serene tropical beach resort, rustic woodland hideaway or the cool winter wonderland. Whether they're embarking on a relaxing family adventure or hooking up on a romantic getaway, your Sims will discover that dull moments are as scarce as frowning faces.

Try your skill on the new Carnival games, conquer the radical Half Pipe or reel in that trophy fish you've always dreamed about. Sims of all ages can hit the beach for an 8-person volleyball game, get revenge in a full-on snowball war, ride the snow slide and much more. When you vacation with the Sims, a good time won't be the one that got away.

While on your vacation, the Sims can interact with over 125 new items including the Snowman and the Camping Tent. Along with fun things to do, meet new characters such as the Vacation Director, the Yeti, the Archer, and the Beach Shark! In case you thought you may get away with nothing but perfect memories, beware of prowling pickpockets, out-of-control children, a serious case of Montezuma's Revenge or some other unexpected surprises that can quickly ruin your dream vacation.

If you think you'll leave with only a sunburn and a head full of stories, your Sims can buy, win or dig up the ultimate vacation souvenir. The fertility god, penguin stuffed animal or the quartz skull are just a few of the memorable items you can score for the mantle back home.

So saddle up, get the neighbors to watch the house and take the Sims on a holiday getaway they'll never forget.

Preliminary System Requirements:

-Full version of The Sims required to play.
-Mac OS 8.6, 9, X or later
-233MHz or faster (333MHz recommended)
-PowerMac G3 or G4 processor
-192 MB of built-in RAM (additional Virtual Memory may be necessary) -4 MB video memory -600 MB storage space -8x CD-ROM drive -Video Card (ATI Rage Pro, NVidia GeForce or later)

Related Links: Thanks to Aspyr

[PressRelease] UbiSoft Releases Ghost Recond: GotY Edition (PC) - posted by Erich Becker at 8:52 am CDT


PC Game of the Year: Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon and Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Desert Siege Mission Pack-Two Games for the Price of One

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - June 17, 2002 - Ubi Soft , one of the world's largest video game publishers, announces Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Game of the Year Edition, including the award-winning hit titles Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon and the Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Desert Siege mission pack.

As game fans know, Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon won Game of the Year from PC Gamer and IGN PC and was the only DOUBLE PC Game of the Year Winner for 2001. Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Desert Siege mission pack won Editor's Choice from both PC Gamer and Computer Gaming World.

In the 8th Annual PC Gamer Awards, leading computer game magazine PC Gamer named Ghost Recon, PC Game of the Year., it's highest honor, explaining "In a year of fine games, Ghost Recon stands out as one that satisfies visually, sonically, viscerally, and emotionally." According to Executive Editor Daniel Morris, "...not only is it the Game of the Year, it's the Game of the Last Two Years."

"Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon raised the bar for PC games, and Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Desert Siege mission pack continued that tradition," said Laurent Detoc, president of Ubi Soft Entertainment. "By purchasing the Game of the Year Edition, game fans not only get an incredible value, they are promised an amazing gameplay experience as well."

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Game of the Year Edition has a suggested retail price of $49.99 and is available in U.S. and Canadian retail stores today.

About the Game of the Year Pack
Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Game of the Year Edition includes PC Game of the Year: Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon and the explosive mission pack Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Desert Siege.

With the two games combined, gamers get:
- 23 single-player missions
- 11 dedicated multiplayer maps
- 6 different multiplayer modes including team-based Siege and Domination modes

About Ubi Soft Entertainment
Ubi Soft Entertaiment is an international producer, publisher and distributor of interactive entertainment products. A leading company in the multimedia industry, Ubi Soft's strong and diversified line-up has grown considerably, as has Ubi Soft itself. As well as steadfastly continuing to partner with several high-profile companies, Ubi Soft has also confirmed its presence on the global market by developing its own exceptional properties. Founded in 1986 in France, Ubi Soft is now present on every continent, both through offices in 22 different countries including the United States, Brazil, Morocco, Germany and China and through sales of products in over 50 countries. The group is dedicated to delivering high-quality, cutting-edge video game titles to consumers around the world. To learn more, visit www.ubi.com.

©2002 Ubi Soft, Inc. All rights reserved. Ubi Soft Entertainment and the Ubi Soft logo are registered trademarks and Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Game of the Year Edition is a trademark of Ubi Soft, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. © 2002 Red Storm Entertainment, Inc. Red Storm and Red Storm Entertainment are trademarks of Red Storm Entertainment, Inc. Red Storm Entertainment, Inc. is a Ubi Soft Entertainment company. All Rights Reserved. Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon is a trademark of Rubicon, Inc. under license to Ubi Soft Entertainment. Desert Siege is a trademark of Ubi Soft Entertainment.

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[PressRelease] Titus Releases Barbarian (PS2) - posted by Erich Becker at 8:51 am CDT


The quest of a lifetime awaits you.Are you ready?
BarbarianT is released for the Sony PlayStation 2® Computer Entertainment System

CHATSWORTH, California, June 28, 2002 -It's time to choose your character and embark upon a carnage filled path through Barbaria. Hitting store shelves today, BarbarianT brings a little something new to the gaming market as it contains elements of fighting, role playing, massive multiplayer, action/adventure, and classic party game all into one magnificently medieval title. A new breed of gaming is here, are you a new breed of warrior, ready for this challenge?

BarbarianT, developed by Saffire takes players to new depths of gaming madness. Whether you battle your way through the single player campaigns or grab some friends and duke it out in the multiplayer battles, you will surely be in Barbaric spirits. BarbarianT is not your average fighter, nor is it your average RPG. BarbarianT is completely redefining a new genre of gaming. BarbarianT is a hybrid title coupling action/adventure, fighting, and role-playing elements. Choose your warrior from the Mighty Dagan, Princess Keela or one of 8 other playable characters. Travel through the world of Barbaria battling against the wrath of Zaugg, as you navigate your way on a majestic journey. Sure there are head to head battles, but that is merely where the game begins. With a rich storyline and detailed quest mode you discover your characters true motives. With multiple story branches, BarbarianT offers plenty of depth. While your BarbarianT is armed with unique weapons, you will find that there is more than one way to bash an opponent. Not only can you uproot trees and toss coffins at your enemy, but also you can actually pick up the AI thugs and swing them around as a weapon! If standard weapons aren't your thing, there is always the option of using magic and Rune attacks to hand your foes the beat down. Still looking for more. How about massive levels and arenas spanning several screen lengths wide and offering breakaway zones that lead you to new areas.

Along your journey you will need to advance your characters unique attributes by collecting and using skill points. By upgrading your character in certain areas like strength, magic, defense and so on, you will become a more seasoned Barbarian, which is absolutely necessary to achieve victory and to remain among the living. After upgrading your character you may save to a memory card and play against your friends for some real barbaric action. If playing against one friend isn't enough action for you, try your skill at battling up to 4 human players and 4 computer opponents! That's 8 players doing battle on screen at one time! The essence of a party game is fully captured in this multiplayer option. True fun, adventure and classic shenanigans are easily found while laying the whoop down to your three best buddies. The newest experience in fun, the newest experience in gaming is here.

10 unique characters with their own massive storyline and quest. Rich navigational storyline with 300 different story branches. RPG upgrade system with experience points. Multiple quest options 10 huge multi-level fighting arenas. Battle up to 4 human opponents and 4 AI thugs at once. Upgradable attack and magic combos. Interactive environment where virtually everything can be used as a weapon. Additional mini-quests with new fighting rules. Sophisticated tutorial.

Gear up in the fur and loincloths because BarbarianT is now available for the Sony PlayStation® 2 Computer Entertainment System for $49.99. BarbarianT will also be soon be available for the Nintendo GameCubeT and the XboxT videogame system from Microsoft. For more information please visit www.titusgames.com or the official Barbarian site at www.barbarian-game.com

Titus Interactive was founded in 1985 by Hervé and Eric Caen. The company has quickly grown into one of the world's leading multi-platform software developers and publishers. Titus has developed a number of highly acclaimed games for both PC and console. With offices in Paris, Los Angeles, London, Hamburg, Oslo and Tokyo, the company has established an extensive distribution network. Titus Interactive holds 72,5% of Interplay Entertainment and 100% of Virgin Interactive Entertainment. For the year 2000/2001 (closing on June 30, 2001), the group has reported consolidated net revenues of EUR 175 million. For its first half of the fiscal year 2001/2002 ending December 31, 2001, Titus Interactive Group reported group net income of EUR 7.5 million, which is a EUR 0.81 earning per share. Titus trades on the European exchange Euro NM under the following codes: TITP.LN, Euroclear: 5012. More comprehensive information on Titus Interactive and its products is available through its worldwide web site at http://www.titusgames.com

[GameAnnounced] UbiSoft Announces Battle Realms: Winter of the Wolf (PC) - posted by Erich Becker at 8:50 am CDT


SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. -- (July 01, 2002) - Ubi Soft Entertainment, one of the world's largest game publishers, today announced the development of Battle Realms(tm): Winter of the Wolf -- the next episode to the Battle Realms series developed by Thousand Oaks, CA based Liquid Entertainment. This prequel to the epic Battle Realms story will feature new expansion units and characters that will immerse gamers deeper into the Battle Realms world revealing the history and struggle of the Wolf Clan. The game will be co-published by Ubi Soft Entertainment and Crave Entertainment for the PC and is scheduled to release in fall 2002.

Battle Realms is a fantasy, real-time strategy game inspired by Japanese mythology and traditional kung-fu cinema. The depth of the Battle Realms mythology intertwines stories from several clans, each with its own unique origin and culture. Winter of the Wolf takes place seven years prior to the events in the original Battle Realms and accounts the proud Wolf people's rise from oppression and slavery under the Lotus Clan. The Wolf Clan's rise to power occurs over the course of twelve all-new scenarios. As heroic Wolf leader Grayback, players must journey through dark mines and snowbound forests to free the clan from the tyranny of the Lotus Mages, and save the land from a fierce, magical winter.

Battle Realms has received numerous awards and praise from the most influential critics and media within the gaming industry, including 13 awards and nominations following E3 2001. Battle Realms appeared on Computer Gaming World's "Top 10 Games of E3 2001," and the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences nominated Battle Realms for "Computer Strategy Game of the Year".

Battle Realms: Winter of the Wolf will be sold with the original Battle Realms included for a suggested retail price of $29.99. Current Battle Realms owners will receive a $10 off discount with proof of purchase through mail-in rebate.

About Ubi Soft Entertainment
Ubi Soft Entertainment is a global producer, publisher and international distributor of interactive entertainment products. A leading company in the industry, Ubi Soft's strong and diversified lineup has grown considerably. As well as developing original properties, Ubi Soft has also steadfastly partnered with several high-profile companies and is dedicated to delivering consumers with quality videogame titles while offering blockbuster franchises. Founded in 1986, the company has offices in 21countries including the United States, Canada, France, Germany and China and sells its products in over 50 countries. For more information about Ubi Soft, visit http://www.ubi.com .

Crave Entertainment is a privately held publisher of innovative videogame entertainment products for the major console platforms including Sega Dreamcast(tm), Game Boy® Color, the PlayStation® game console, PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the XboxÔ video game system from Microsoft, and PC. For more information about Crave Entertainment, please visit www.cravegames.com.

©2002 Ubi Soft, Inc. All rights reserved. Ubi Soft Entertainment and the Ubi Soft logo are registered trademarks of Ubi Soft, Inc. Battle Realms is a trademark of Liquid Entertainment, LLC, under license to Ubi Soft Entertainment. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

© 2002 Crave Entertainment, Inc. All rights reserved. Battle Engine © 2001 Liquid Entertainment, LLC. All rights reserved. Developed by Liquid Entertainment, LLC. Co-published by Ubi Soft Entertainment S. A. and Crave Entertainment, Inc. under license by Crave Entertainment, Inc. Battle Realms, Crave Entertainment, and the Crave Entertainment logo are either trademarks or registered trademarks of Crave Entertainment, Inc. in the U.S. and other countries. All other copyrights and trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

[PressRelease] Madden NFL 2003 Release Date - posted by Erich Becker at 8:48 am CDT

Electronic Arts contacted us this morning and let us know that their latest in the award winning Madden NFL series will launch this August. Madden NFL 2003 will be available for all platforms including Microsoft XBox, Sony PlayStation2, Nintendo GameCube, and PC beginning on August 13, 2002.

Get ready football fans, I know I am. You will be able to find our full review days after the games release.

[PCGaming] Octagon to Secure Worldwide Publishing for Playstos’ Debut Title - posted by Andy Grieser at 6:54 am CDT

Octagon to Secure Worldwide Publishing for Playstos’ Debut Title
Disable the Genetic Time Bomb in Ruff Trigger

CHAPEL HILL, NC and MILAN, Italy, 2 July 2002 - Octagon Entertainment, Inc. has teamed up with Italian development team Playstos™ Entertainment to find worldwide publishing for Ruff Trigger: The Vanocore Conspiracy , an action-packed, shoot ‘em up experience currently in development for a next-gen console and PC.
Vanocore Corporation is a suspicious conglomerate that specializes in the genetic engineering of pets, including the Piglet, one of its most popular commodities. An error in the genetic code has caused the harmless beings to transform into ravenous fiends known as Piglots. Many Piglets have been released into the Tyke Galaxy and it is only a matter of time before the docile animals turn into fierce beasts. It is now up to one agent to capture as many Piglets as possible before the cosmos becomes overrun with the morphing creatures.

Ruff Trigger, an upright version of the Alaskan malamute sled dog, is the premier bounty hunter for Boss Private Investigation Agency (BPIA). Ruff agrees to hunt down the Piglets, aided or hindered along the way by information from his cohorts. In his pursuit, Ruff snaps up 13 bizarre but vicious weapons and maneuvers destructive machinery and vehicles to accomplish his mission. Action takes place on the three planets of the Tyke Galaxy, each full of diverse terrains, elevators and moving platforms as well as high-security and underground areas. Among Ruff’s associates are an enchanting but fierce Siamese cat and a strapping desert fox. Adversaries include the enormous police Ratz, the Skul alien guards and the Spygoats of the Secret Service Federation, not to mention other bounty hunters, outlaws and dangerous creatures that populate the Tyke Galaxy. The ultimate dangers, however, lie in the bowels of the corrupt Vanocore Corporation.

Ruff Trigger’s single player gameplay offers Story Mode and Out on Bail on the PC version. For the console version, multiplayer mode allows up to four players to compete against each other or computer AI via split screen, and players can additionally select core characters as well as defeated enemies while contending on a minimum of three arenas. Ruff Trigger also offers many exciting power-ups, a wide range of equipment and control options.

Octagon agent Jerod Kirby recently signed Playstos as a client. “I am very impressed with the professionalism and talent level of the people at Playstos. We are very excited to be working with the team.”

Playstos CEO Luca Da Rios and Director Gabriele Baldissera, “To launch our title we could not have asked for anything more than being supported and represented by the professionalism and experience Octagon offers, with whom we will undoubtedly do great things.”

Octagon Entertainment arranges worldwide financing, publishing, licensing and distribution agreements for developers and publishers of computer and video games. Octagon currently represents products including Duke Nukem: Manhattan Project , Enclave , Soldiers of Anarchy , Outlaw Golf , Celtic Kings: Rage of War , Painkiller and Devastation .

Playstos strives to produce videogames of the highest quality utilizing its own game development technology, prove itself as a competent and skilled videogame developer on an international scale and offer an increasingly demanding general public videogames with substance, a storyline and most of all, an entertaining quality.

Friday, June 28, 2002
[Web] Last Day for Age of Mythology Alpha Sign-Up is June 30 - posted by Andy Grieser at 10:38 am CDT

Last Day for Age of Mythology Alpha Test Sign-Ups is June 30

Gamers wishing to sign up for the Age of Mythology 10,000-person online multiplayer alpha test can do so through Sunday, June 30. Tens of thousands have already signed up since the forms went live on Friday, June 21. This limited alpha version of Age of Mythology will contain two of the nine civilizations that will be available when the game is released this October. Up to four players will be able to compete head-to-head as a follower of either Zeus or Poseidon on one of two multiplayer maps.

For more information and to sign up, please visit the official Age of Mythology site at
http://www.microsoft.com/games/ageofmythology/ , or the Ensemble Studios site at
http://www.ensemblestudios.com/aom/ .

Using familiar elements of classical mythology, Age of Mythology casts players as one of nine unique civilizations from ancient Greek, Norse and Egyptian mythologies. Players can reinforce their armies with mythological creatures like Cyclopes and Minotaurs or call upon the mighty powers of gods such as Zeus to rain down lightning bolts on unsuspecting enemies. Age of Mythology also incorporates Ensemble Studios' trademark features from previous Age of Empires games, including a compelling economic model, a massive army and battle system, unequaled artificial intelligence, random maps, intuitive gameplay and extreme attention to detail.

Age of Mythology's 3-D engine delivers impressive graphics in a fully 3-D environment, including beautiful waves and water, lifelike rolling terrain, realistic sunlight, and lush forests. In-game cinematics create a seamless, story-based and character-driven campaign which features 36 scenarios. In addition, the game features incredible special effects with astonishing levels of detail, including waterspouts, infernos, snowstorms, tornadoes and earthquakes. Age of Mythology will be available this fall for an estimated retail price of $49.99 (U.S.).

Age of Mythology is a branch of the popular Age of Empires franchise that has sold more than
10 million licensed units worldwide. More information about Age of Mythology is available at http://www.microsoft.com/games/ageofmythology/ , or on the Ensemble Studios site at http://www.ensemblestudios.com/aom/ .

[Console] MIB II: Alien Escape Hits Store Shelves - posted by Andy Grieser at 10:37 am CDT


The Men in Black Are Back, Geared Up To Defend The Galaxy And Your
PlayStation(R)2 From The Scum Of The Universe

LOS ANGELES - June 28, 2002 - Infogrames, Inc. (NASDAQ: IFGM), a leading
global publisher of interactive entertainment software, today announced
"Men in Black(TM) II: Alien Escape," for the PlayStation(R)2 computer
entertainment system has shipped to stores. "Men in Black II: Alien
Escape" is a fast-paced third-person action game infused with the trademark
humor of both the original hit film and its sequel set for release on July

"'Men in Black II: Alien Escape' is as action-packed and exciting as the
motion picture," said Jean-Philippe Agati, senior vice president and
general manager of Infogrames' Los Angeles studio. "The game offers
players a fast-paced shooter with the quick-witted commentary typical of
Agents J and K. Featuring snappy one-liners, and bizarre, humorous
situations, 'Men in Black II: Alien Escape' is no ordinary video game

In "Men in Black II: Alien Escape," Agents J and K discover a space prison
hulk that crashed into the Earth's ocean decades ago, carrying the most
dangerous alien gangs in the galaxy. The ship's arrival unleashed a large
number of unlicensed and unaccounted-for aliens now hiding out on Earth,
each a hardened criminal. There's only one possible course of action -
hunt them down and bring them in - dead or alive.

Players can select J, quick-witted and dangerously hip, or K, the confident
veteran. While J moves at a faster pace, K's experience and
technologically superior weapons give him an edge. Allowing players to
switch between characters enables them to experiment with various weapons
and character strengths. A non-playable character partner appears in
computer-generated cut-scenes and via comlink throughout the game,
providing backup, advice and, of course, off-the- wall wisecracks.

A host of new aliens from the upcoming movie sequel add to the mayhem while
popular creatures from the 1997 film, including the ever-popular Worm Guys,
make an appearance. While some aliens are allies and informants, most are
hostile and intimidating and will do whatever they can to take over the

"Men in Black II: Alien Escape" features five distinct episodes with
varying themes and settings - each with its own sub-levels and story
scenes. Players blast their way through a disreputable dockside, a natural
magnet for "business" aliens particularly those with a penchant for
smuggling. A nuclear plant decommissioned for failing to meet EPA
standards provides a perfect backdrop for alien mischief. Players also
cruise through the rough and tumble Manhattan streets, high tech Global
Inc. with a reputation for off-world alien involvement, and the alien
prison ship VVS Maxim Securitus.

"Men in Black II: Alien Escape" features the stylish signature silver
weapons from the film. Players may try out the XD9 Lazy Weasel spread
shooter, which zaps any alien life form in range into a pile of
extraterrestrial goo. This shooter is ideal when there are multiple aliens
to destroy. However, the standard sidearm of agents J and K is the classic
J2 Blaster, a gun that strips particles from its barrel and
hyper-accelerates them to dissolve unfortunate aliens. Each firearm
employs a different type of technology, and the game features spread
weapons, homing weapons, area effect weapons, beam weapons and charge
weapons. With these high tech, high power alien killing machines, the Men
in Black are an unstoppable duo bent on kicking alien butt!

Developed by Infogrames' Melbourne House, "Men in Black II: Alien Escape"
is available at most major retail stores this week for an estimated street
price of $29.95 and is rated "T" for Teens.

[Web] Medieval: Total War Site Launches - posted by Andy Grieser at 10:34 am CDT


Santa Monica, CA - June 28, 2000 -- Activision, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI) and the Creative Assembly today relaunched the official web site for the upcoming strategy game of epic battles, Medieval: Total War . The site, located at www.activision.com/games/medieval_totalwar/ , includes news, game features and custom wallpaper. The site will also display the latest screenshots from Medieval: Total War that showcase the game's graphical enhancements. Thanks to a bit of technical wizardry on behalf of the developer, Medieval: Total War's units now have with four times the detail and resolution of the troops in Shogun: Total War.

"The new web site is a fantastic resource for Medieval: Total War and offers fans a glimpse of the innovation and quality of the game," said Tim Ansell, Managing Director of the Creative Assembly. "First time gamers can be fighting epic battles in minutes and hardcore strategy fans can engage in deeper, richer campaigns to conquer Europe. And the enhanced graphics take the game to a whole new level. It all comes together to make us very confident that Medieval: Total War is going to be this year's PC smash hit."

The Medieval: Total War web site will feature the following sections:
Features - Learn the basics of Medieval: Total War , including factions, siege weapons, types of gameplay styles and more.

Story - Delve into the brutal history of medieval Europe and learn about epic campaigns that took place like the 100 Years War or the Crusades.

Screenshots - View massive conflicts between warring factions with all the pageantry, spectacle and bloodshed of medieval combat.

Downloads - Fans can get medieval on their desktop with official Medieval: Total War wallpaper. The official demo will also be available for the site shortly.

Medieval: Total War allows players to take control of one of twelve world powers as they attempt to rewrite history through a mixture of trade, diplomacy, resource management and epic wars of conquest. Featuring an incredibly powerful 3D engine, the game supports real-time 3D battles of more than 10,000 troops and more than 100 unique unit types, including knights, infantry and siege engines, in terrain as varied as deserts, forest, plains and mountains. Players will utilize authentic battle strategies and tactics as they unleash their forces against medieval castles and mighty fortresses with an arsenal of battle-field weapons including long-bows, muskets, cannons and catapults which can pound castle walls and buildings to rubble.

The Creative Assembly is a leading developer of computer games for PC and console platforms. Based in Horsham, UK, The Creative Assembly are best known for their genre-defining game of epic warfare, Shogun: Total War. The follow up to this award winning title, Medieval: Total War intensifies the epic battles to cover four centuries of warfare across Europe and North Africa, featuring spectacular castle sieges to deliver the most anticipated strategy game the PC has ever seen. Fans can find out more on the entire Total War franchise at www.totalwar.com .

Wednesday, June 26, 2002
[Community] Forgotten Realms: Neverwinter Nights Feature Story - posted by Erich Becker at 11:18 am CDT

Check out our article on the city of Neverwinter and the Forgotten Realms at Khabal Gaming.

Feature Story: From Book to Game: The Forgotten Realms

"So you’ve bought Neverwinter Nights with its “make your own world” toolkit, but you haven’t got a clue where to start, or what kind of world Neverwinter currently inhabits. Well, here’s your chance to take a short tour of some very famous places in the Forgotten Realms, the realm in which Neverwinter is located, and collect a list of names and locations you can use in your next adventure!"

Related Links: See the Full Article over at Khabal Gaming

[PressRelease] Return to Castle Wolfenstein: Game of the Year Edition Released - posted by Erich Becker at 11:16 am CDT


MESQUITE, Texas – June 26, 2002 – id Software™ and Activision, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI) have joined forces to enlist gamers in the ultimate blitzkrieg with the release of Return to Castle Wolfenstein™: Game of the Year™, a special edition of the blockbuster PC hit that has shipped more than 1.2 million units worldwide. The Game of the Year edition features the original award-winning Return to Castle Wolfenstein, new multiplayer maps, the WolfRadiant map editor, the making of Return to Castle Wolfenstein feature AVI and the full version of the game that started it all, Wolfenstein 3D. The title is currently available at retail outlets nationwide at a suggested retail price of $44.99 and is rated “M” (Mature) for blood, gore and violence by the ESRB.

”Return to Castle Wolfenstein has been one of the most widely played and critically acclaimed games of 2001, including a ninety-percent or higher rating by over 35 different publications and multiple game of the year awards,” said Todd Hollenshead, CEO, id Software. “By incorporating all of the new maps, updates, editing tools and bonus material, we’ve created the ultimate Return to Castle Wolfenstein package.

Return to Castle Wolfenstein: Game of the Year offers all seven official post release multiplayer maps developed by Nerve Software and Splash Damage, including Chateau, Dam, Ice, Keep, Rocket, Tram and Trenchtoast. Plus, the special edition also features demos and trailers of several other popular titles powered by id Software’s legendary Quake III Arena™ engine. For gamers craving even more Return to Castle Wolfenstein, Game of the Year also delivers “Behind Enemy Lines,” the official making-of video as well as wallpapers, screenshots and cartoons for fans to savor the action on their desktop.

“The original Return to Castle Wolfenstein delivered intense gameplay and thrilling action, now with Return to Castle Wolfenstein: Game of the Year edition, we’ve armed gamers for a new and long-lasting assault that is sure to give fans endless hours of Wolfenstein excitement,” said Larry Goldberg, executive vice president, Activision Worldwide Studios. “With a full set of new maps, bonus material and even the original Wolfenstein 3D, Game of the Year has something for everyone.”

Return to Castle Wolfenstein: Game of the Year is a supernatural World War II adventure where gamers are thrust into a last ditch offensive against Himmler’s SS paranormal division. In addition to an action-packed story-driven single-player experience versus the Third Reich, the title’s multiplayer mode enlists gamers to hone their tactical skills in squad-based combat scenarios. Players will join the fight as an axis or ally soldier and be challenged to intense, realistic campaigns like storming beachheads, infiltrating military installations, holding strategic positions, and more.

id – Freud's primal part of the human psyche and one of the hottest game shops on Earth – has been rocking the gaming world from Mesquite, Texas since 1991. As a renowned leader in the industry, id Software forged such frenetic titles as Wolfenstein 3D®, DOOM®, DOOM II™, QUAKE® and QUAKE II™. With intense graphics and mind-blowing action, id’s games have helped redefine the modern video game, continually setting industry standards for technology and gameplay. And, in keeping with tradition, id Software has amplified the world of adrenaline pumping 3-D gaming with the release of their latest action titles, QUAKE III Arena™, QUAKE III: Team Arena™, and Return to Castle Wolfenstein™. id’s advanced QUAKE III Arena engine is leading the next revolution in 3-D interactive games with both single and multiplayer technology. Check out more about id Software at www.idsoftware.com.

Headquartered in Santa Monica, California, Activision, Inc. is a leading worldwide developer, publisher and distributor of interactive entertainment and leisure products. Founded in 1979, Activision posted revenues of $786 million for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2002.

Activision maintains operations in the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Japan, Australia, and the Netherlands. More information about Activision and its products can be found on the company's World Wide Web site, which is located at www.activision.com.

The statements contained in this release that are not historical facts are “forward-looking statements.” The Company cautions readers of this press release that a number of important factors could cause Activision’s actual future results to differ materially from those expressed in any such forward-looking statements. These important factors, and other factors that could affect Activision, are described in Activision’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2001, which was filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. Readers of this press release are referred to such filings.

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[PCGaming] Mindark Office Raid Demanded by Microsoft - posted by Andy Grieser at 10:21 am CDT

Gothenburg, Sweden - June 26th, 2002 - MindArk AB, the Swedish creators of the
3D Virtual Universe "Project Entropia" was raided by 70 officials of the Swedish
court, acting on behalf of Microsoft and three other software companies.

Microsoft has accused MindArk of infringement on their software rights, stating
that MindArk is willingly and unlawfully using over 600 programs without license.
The raid on the MindArk headquarters in Gothenburg is believed to be the largest
operation ever conducted by a Swedish court involving court officials from several
cities on the west coast of Sweden as well as external personnel recruited for
the purpose.

Jan Welter Timkrans, managing director of MindArk AB, says in a comment to
what occurred:

"MindArk has duly procured licenses for all software used in its
offices. I would even go so far as to say that MindArk is one of
the companies with the most stringent policies regarding software
licenses in use by its employees."

"One can expect that Microsoft and the other companies are keeping
track of what and to whom their representatives are selling software.
In some cases the registration process involves direct contact between
our company and Microsoft or its colleagues. With this in mind,
Microsoft must be assumed to know that what they have stated to the
Swedish courts is not the full truth, therefore I must assume that
Microsoft must have another agenda for their action against MindArk."

Jan Welter Timkrans suggests that Microsoft is trying to disrupt the launching
of Project Entropia:

"All through our development process we have kept track of which
companies are visiting our site on the Internet and without comparison
Microsoft has been one of the most frequent visitors."

When MindArk a few weeks ago proclaimed Project Entropia 3D universe open for
anyone to enter from their computer, the Project Entropia site immediately became
the world's largest site on the Internet even beating Yahoo, MSN, etc.

Microsoft owns a product named Asheron's Call, which aims in the same direction
as Project Entropia. Asheron's Call however lacks many of the key ingredients
Project Entropia has. To name a few; in Project Entropia real money is used,
things that one may acquire can be turned into real cash, the software is freely
available and downloadable on the internet, millions of users will be able to
interact within one and the same universe.

Benny Iggland, chairman of the supervisory board of MindArk AB says in a comment:

"MindArk is prepared to sue Microsoft and the other companies for
damages caused by their action. Proceedings from this process,
which will certainly reach a substantial number of millions of
United States Dollars, will be placed in the virtual universe of
Project Entropia as a number of gigantic treasures that anyone entering
the Universe of Project Entropia may find and grab."

MindArk (www.mindark.com) develops Internet technology solutions. With novel
applications in the interactive entertainment sector, in browser infrastructure,
and in massively parallel active user presence on the Internet, MindArk is expanding
the new universe.


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