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Console: Sega sues Kmart
Evening console news: Sega has sued retail giant Kmart for allegedly not paying for more than $2.2 million worth of Dreamcast game consoles; Tecmo has confirmed the production of Monster Rancher 3 for the Playstation 2, the latest installment in the popular simulation monster breeding series; and Sega has released the first screenshots of Virtua Fighter 4, illustrating the game's vastly improved visuals over its predecessors.
Screenshots: House Party, Tropico
Evening screenshots: Cornered Rat Software has released a promotional video for World War II Online; GA-Strategy has released six new screenshots for The Sims: House Party, which has yet to be announced for the Mac but is expected later this year; and Voodoo Extreme has posted a single new screenshot for PopTop Software's upcoming building/strategy game for the Mac and PC, Tropico.
GoD looks at level designers
Gathering of Developers writer Sanford May takes "a look at level designers in their natural habitat," speaking to level designers about their work. Among the level designers included in the article are Ritual Entertainment's Mike Porter (Heavy Metal: FAKK2), Human Head Studios' Mick Beard (Rune) and Terminal Reality's Joe Wampole (4x4 Evolution). "Though it is a world confined to a scant few inches of computer monitor and some several hundred megabytes of hard disk space, it's their world, they are in charge, and for a few hours a day, they can make you do what they want."
Sin2ut Public Release 2 Released
Sin2ut Public Release 2 is a new version of a mod for Unreal Tournament which emulates maps, weapons and gameplay found in Ritual Entertainment's first-person shooter, SiN. This latest release may be the last due to lack of contributors and an unsuccessful search for a modeller to contribute time to the project. If you're willing to help on the project, see Sin2ut's web site for more details.
Apple email spells the demise of iReview
An email sent from Apple to sites that have been featured on iReview indicates that the service has been terminated. "Dear iReview Badge recipient, iReview has been removed from http://www.apple.com. Please remove any badge and hyperlink references to iReview from your Web site. Thank you, Apple Computer Internet Services." No reason for the discontinuation of iReview was given, which disappeared following the debut of Macworld Expo Tokyo.
NVIDIA Conference Call Reports
Both IMG and Accelerate Your Mac! have published select quotes from a conference call held yesterday with NVIDIA's Tony Tamasi, Director of Product Management. Each report answers a variety of different questions concerning the Mac version of the GeForce3, and Tomasi comments on the possibility of a third-party vendor, apart from Apple, selling the Mac GeForce3 on the retail market. "We've actually been working with a number of traditional add-on card manufacturers and some of them have expressed interest in developing a product for the retail shelf for the Macintosh," says Tamasi, "and as soon as one of those makes sense and productizes it, we're happy to sell the chips."
MacPlay pulls SiN patch
MacPlay has announced that it has pulled the SiN Gold 1.1.2 patch due to problems reported under certain configurations. Users who are experiencing problems with the patch are encouraged to send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with a description of the problem and an Apple System Profiler report.
Codec adds MD5 creation to 4D
Codec 1.0 is a 4D component that provides MD5 digest creation routines to 4D programmers.
Insecticide 1.0.1 improves anti-virus utility
Insecticide 1.0.1 is a $25 shareware anti-virus utility that can detect viruses, macro-viruses, trojan horses, worms, and HyperCard viruses. The software can manually scan files or can be set to automatically check them in the background or when they are opened. Version 1.0.1 is a maintenance release that fixes several bugs.
G4/733 ships with blank media and other notes
Michael Gaines sent us some notes regarding the G4/733 system that he received. "[It] comes with 2 blank DVD-Rs and 2 blank CD-Rs. I had no idea that Apple would provide blank media, especially DVD-Rs since their Web site has them listed with a 45 day wait (we all know what that means). Hopefully this means that the 5-packs will be shipping soon. One odd thing about the new G4 is that it wouldn't boot off of the Software Restore CD with my 3-button Kensington mouse connected. I had to connect the Apple Pro mouse and reboot."
Screenshots: Shadowbane, WW2 Online, Summoner
Afternoon screenshots: L'Orbe has posted two new screenshots from Wolfpack Studios' massive multiplayer online role-playing game for the Mac and PC, Shadowbane; MindlessGames.com has posted six new screenshots from Cornered Rat Software's massive multiplayer online war combat game for the Mac and PC, World War II Online; and Computer and Video Games has posted six new screenshots from Volition's upcoming role-playing game for the Mac and PC, Summoner.
Console: Apple uses Playstation 2
Afternoon console news: Sony Computer Entertainment President Ken Kutaragi delivered a keynote speech discussing the broadband revolution and the evolving world of computer entertainment at the SGI Solution Forum 2001; a recent event let members of the press battle online in Worms World Party for the Dreamcast, set for release later this year; and Apple used a Sony Playstation 2 gaming console to promote its DVD Studio Pro editing software.
HH: Soell Interview
Halo Headquarters interviews Bungie community guy Matt Soell to talk about Halo for the X-Box which will also be released for the Mac and PC. "Just be polite and bring a handkerchief when you see [Halo] at E3. Don't want passers-by slipping on other people's drool and suing us."
New features in Fly! II
GA-Source details some of the improvements that will be made in Fly! II, the sequel to Terminal Reality's ultra-realistic flight simulator for the Mac and PC. Among the new features in Fly! II are crisper, clearer photo-realistic detail, increased visibility range, high accuracy altitude/elevation modelling and new visual effects. The game is scheduled to be released this Spring.
Battle.net under attack
Blizzard Entertainment has announced that its Battle.net online service as well as the company's web sites are currently the victim of a server attack by an individual or group. The company has contacted the FBI and European law enforcement to investigate, but cautions that some users may be unable to log in to Battle.net or load the company's web sites because of this issue.
SANcube creator Micronet closes operations
RAID specialist Micronet, whose products included the FireWire SANcube, has ceased operations. Ampex, Micronet's parent company, announced the closure yesterday with little additional details. Micronet had failed to turn a profit since its inception. The SANcube Web site redirects to Netus, a networking company, with no details on the SANcube. [updated]
Games: Baldur\'s Gate Multiplayer update
games.macnn.com has posted an update on the multiplayer patch for Baldur's Gate as well as the development of expansion pack Baldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast; in addition, the site notes comments made by id Software co-founder John Carmack on NVIDIA's new GeForce3. [updated]
Carmack analysis of GeForce3
id Software's John Carmack returned from Macworld Expo Tokyo and published an update to his .plan with his complete thoughts on NVIDIA's GeForce3. The post is highly technical; if terms like "triangular rasterization dependencies" and "anisotropic filtering" are unknowns to you, then you won't get much value out of Carmack's analysis. "The short answer is that the GeForce 3 is fantastic," says Carmack. "I haven't had such an impression of raising the performance bar since the Voodoo 2 came out, and there are a ton of new features for programmers to play with." Carmack was also seen making comments at Slashdot including those on how much effect AltiVec has had on his speed tests and the differences in speed in Doom III between the 733 MHz G4 and a 1 GHz Pentium III...
Penny Arcade humor on Doom III demo
Today's new comic strip at Penny Arcade takes a humorous look at the first showing of the Doom III engine running on Mac OS X during the Macworld Expo Tokyo keynote. In addition, the comic authors themselves always comment directly on issues themselves, and today is no different. "You poor bastards were - for a goodly while - the equivalent of martyrs where games were concerned, and even the comfort you could take in great titles we never saw on the PC wasn't enough to really call it even," notes Jerry Holkins (aka Tycho). "With nVidia graphics hardware and OS X though, I'm pretty damned close to calling it a wash."
Baldur\'s Gate MP Update
Graphic Simulations Corporation has updated its web site with a note on progress made with the multiplayer patch for Baldur's Gate in addition to the expansion set, Baldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast. "We are presently testing a new version of the Baldur's Gate Multiplayer update. Gameplay seems stable but testing will continue a few more days to be sure. If all goes well, beta testing will begin soon. Tales of the Sword Coast is coming along nicely. As soon as the multiplayer update for Baldur's Gate is finished, beta testing for Tales of the Sword Coast will begin."
Target Korea Mac screenshots
Targetware announced today that earlier this week it had released both Mac and PC beta versions of its Target Korea online flight sim to a closed group of beta testers. The company has posted two screenshots (1, 2) of the game taken on a 533 MHz Power Mac G4 with NVIDIA's GeForce2 MX. One Mac user notes getting framerates in the range of 40 to 50 frames per second at 1600 x 1200.
CM 00/01 3.89 Released
Feral Interactive has released Championship Manager 00/01 3.89, a new version of its soccer management game for the Mac. The update comes in two different versions: one with the database updates included and one without the extra data. [12.7 MB -- w/ data; 2.3 MB -- w/o data]
Roundup: GeForce3 in-depth and more
Yesterday we published an in-depth look at NVIDIA's new GeForce3 including its official specifications and features, we posted a thorough recap of Steve Jobs' keynote address as well as photo galleries from the event including those of John Carmack giving a first look at Doom III, Westlake Interactive announced that the Deus Ex multiplayer patch had entered beta testing and MacPlay announced that Fighter Squadron: Screamin' Demons Over Europe for the Mac is slated for an April 16 release.
Apple updates iMac developer note
Apple has updated the iMac Developer Note to reflect the information pertaining to the new iMacs. Much of the information is identical to that of the previous iMac revision.
Willow Design releases PowerBook G4 case
Willow Design has begun shipping its PowerBook G4 carrying case. Designed specifically for the PowerBook G4, the C$185 (US$123) case measures 15.5 x 13.5 x 6.0" and weighs 3.1 pounds. The case is available in black, charcoal, navy, teal, and purple.
Vicomsoft offers 10% off all products
Vicomsoft is offering customers 10% off any of its products, including Internet Gateway, SurfDoubler, and FTP Client. Enter "HELP" as the promotion code on the ordering page. The sale expires March 1.
Web Confidential for Mac/Palm 2.1/1.2 posted
Web Confidential for Mac 2.2 is an update to the password manager that adds the ability to import data from tab limited text files as well as making encrypted passwords binary cross platform for compatibility with Web Confidential for Windows. The Web Confidential for Palm conduit has also been updated to version 1.2.
Net2Phone Mac beta due next month
Net2Phone says it will release a public beta of its Mac software some time next month. Net2Phone allows users to make free phone calls from their PC to anywhere in the US, and offers reduced rates for international calls. In September we reported that Net2Phone was aiming to have its Mac software ready by January.
Nisus offers special Macworld Tokyo pricing
Nisus Software is offering special Macworld Tokyo pricing for its Nisus Writer 6.0.1 word processor. Until March 2nd, customers can purchase Nisus Writer 6.0.1 for $80 ($20 off), the Nisus Writer competitive upgrade for $60 ($10 off), or the Nisus Writer upgrade for $42 ($8 off).
Iomega QuickSync 3 backup solution announced
Iomega has announced QuickSync 3, a new version of its automated backup software. Among its features, QuickSync 3 can automatically copy files that are moved or saved in a specified to location to another drive as well as scheduling backups. QuickSync 3 is now compatible with non-Iomega drives. The $20 software will ship for PCs on March 2, a Mac version is expected later this year.
MacAmp add-ons available
Subband Software has launched the MacAmp add-ons section, where a collection of skins, plug-ins, utilities, and how-tos can be found for MacAmp 2.0.
Apple confirms 500 MHz iMac discrepancy
As MacNN first noted yesterday, Apple has confirmed that International 500 MHz iMacs, excluding Canada, do indeed ship with older Power PC G3 750 chips, instead of the Power PC 750cx, and that the graphics processor is an 8 MB Rage 128 Pro, in place of the upgraded 16 MB Rage 128 Ultra.
Yesterday: MWT keynote, iTools, AppleStore...
Yesterday we noted that the Macworld Tokyo keynote is available for viewing (as well as a recap of the keynote), Apple's iTools update, new configurations at the AppleStore, details on the GeForce3, and the release of Opera 5.0 TP1.
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