updated 01:10 pm EDT, Thu May 17, 2001
Westlake Interactive has made a number of announcements today concerning its lineup of upcoming Mac games, including Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2, American McGee's Alice, Tomb Raider: Chronicles, and Rune: Halls of Valhalla. In addition, the company has provided updates on the Unreal Tournament OpenAL patch and an updated Deus Ex Multiplayer Patch.
Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 for the Mac has reached the final candidate stage and will begin duplication upon approval from all concerned parties. The THPS2 CD will include a native OS X version of the game.
American McGee's Alice, the third-person 3D action game originally developed by Rogue Entertainment and Electronic Arts, is now at final candidate for the Mac and is expected to begin shipping in the next one to two weeks. The Alice CD will also contain a native Mac OS X version of the game.
Tomb Raider: Chronicles for the Mac, the fifth entry in the 3D action-adventure game series starring Lara Croft, is now at the final candidate stage and is waiting for the completion of the Level Editor to ship. The Tomb Raider Editor, which will ship with the game, is currently in beta testing and is running smoothly. Westlake has been able to build Tomb Raider levels, output them from the editor, run them through the conversion tools, and play them using a special Tomb Raider Level Player. An in-depth tutorial is included to help players begin creating their own levels quickly.
Rune: Halls of Valhalla, the expansion pack to third-person 3D action game Rune, is now in beta testing and is expected to be released in June. The game can be played as a standalone multiplayer game, or can be installed over the original Rune for added multiplayer maps, models, and game modes. In addition, owners of the original Rune can expect a Rune 1.07 patch to be released in the new few weeks.
A special version of Unreal Tournament 436 that allows true 3D positional sound and audio effects when used with Creative's SoundBlaster Live! is currently in development and is expected to be released in the next few weeks. The new version uses the OpenAL interface, which is emerging as a popular API for sound in many upcoming games.
The company is also working on a new multiplayer patch for the Mac version of Deus Ex that will bring it in sync with the current Windows release. As part of this patch efoort, Westlake is also working on a separate update for users of Creative's SoundBlaster Live! cards, which adds EAX support to multiplayer.
Finally, as part of an effort to broaden its platform expertise, Westlake Interactive is developing the Playstation 2 version of Deus Ex. The company has made a statement directed to its Mac customers concerned that the new project is a sign that it is moving away from the Mac market. "This new platform work does not stem from a lack of faith in the Mac market or from us trying to use the Mac market as a stepping stone to "bigger" things," said the statement. "Westlake is fully committed to being the leading developer of Mac games and bringing the best games to the Mac."