Games

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GameTap on Mac

Ready, Fight!  While we patiently await the arrival of Guitar Hero III for Mac. We have the introduction of GameTap for Mac to curb our gaming addiction. For those unaware of the GameTap premise, it's essentially an online library of games that you can play directly from your computer. Windows users have been enjoying the service for some time and starting today, Mac users can join in on the fun.

Gears of War Tips

We need no invite to this party, puny humans! Gears of War (price to be determined), the new third-person shooter from Epic Games, is coming to the Mac soon. In the game, human soldiers fight for the Earth's surface against the invading Locust army that emerges from underground. Study these tips before you get the game, and you'll be better prepared for survival. 

iPod Games

 Apple introduced iPod games about a year ago, and fortunately, the collection wasn’t left to flounder. Apple has added a few new titles, which is proof of Apple’s commitment to iPod games - a big deal to longtime Mac folks who are familiar with Apple’s less-than-stellar gaming history. All of these games are $4.99 (except the 99-cent iQuiz) through the iTunes Store, and you need a fifth-gen video iPod or a new iPod classic to play them. (Sudoku also works with the new third-gen iPod nano.) 

Battlefield 2142

Nothin' like a bit of fraggin' to help two men bond.  The derivative future-world of Battlefield 2142 feels like a mixture of the same old vehicles, weapons, and combat found in other high-tech first-person shooters (FPS). But even through the game rarely innovates, its common parts feel comfortable and fun. FPS enthusiasts need to overlook numerous bugs and glitches, but once we started firing guns inside the bleak world, the great game balance made us forget to care about originality.

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Enter Your Game Phase

Fanciful graphics include undersea settings, alien worlds, and metropolitan cityscapes. It’s no coincidence that Phase was created by Harmonix, also the designer of mega-hit, Guitar Hero III. Similar to that game, Phase asks players to tap buttons in time to visual cues and songs’ rhythms. But instead of being locked into a preset list of tunes, Phase works with nearly any iPod song. This simple music game is catchier than the hook on a top-40 hit.

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Hybrid Rocking with GH3

Are you ready to eventually rock?  Game developer Aspyr announced today that the Mac version of Guitar Hero III will rock into stores on a hybrid PC/Mac disc. The disc will eventually replace the PC-only disc that is available now for PC gamers.

Battlefield 2142 Tips

Go for the crotch shot!  The new ice age has gotten hot, with the EU and PAC armies fighting for the last sunny vacation spots on the globe. Play online with up to 63 other players as recon, assault, engineer, or support with tons of unlockable weapons and gadgets. Try these tactics the next time a giant walking robot corners you between a gun turret and a hard place.

Madden Sacked on iMac

 UPDATE: EA released a software update that fixes the problems detailed below. Nice work and thanks, EA. Of all the Electronic Arts titles announced back in June, it was Madden NFL '08 that I eagerly anticipated. It's finally here, and it's unfortunate that we're going to have to wait for EA to release software updates before we can have any fun with it. Madden NFL '08 has video problems with the alumminum iMac. I loaded the game on my 20-inch 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo iMac. The configuration screens are incomprehensible. 

RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 Soaked

Part of the fun is zooming in close on visitors or even experiencing your own creations from a first-person view. RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 Soaked adds buckets and buckets of aquatic-themed attractions to the core RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 game, where you manage a theme park. Since it’s an expansion pack, Soaked requires the original RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 game, which will set you back $49.99. Soaked gives you many more scenarios and options, including dolphin shows (who doesn’t love a good dolphin show?), water slides, more intricate laser shows, and even basic changes to the original game, such as the ability to build roller coasters with tunnels. Soaked doesn’t fundamentally change RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 - the game interface is as waterlogged as ever - but fans of the first game will easily appreciate the additions.

Age of Empires III: The Warchiefs

Eventually, the villagers discover outsourcing, so they’re free to work on building casinos.  The WarChiefs expansion pack for the Age of Empires III real-time strategy game adds three new civilizations: the Iroquois Confederacy, the Sioux Nation, and the Aztec Empire. Each has a Tribal Council (similar to a Home City) and a powerful WarChief. The well-rounded Iroquois produce artillery and siege units. The speedy Sioux start the game with a full population that’s unable to build walls for their encampment. The Aztecs are focused only on a strong infantry, with their elite troops laying waste to buildings and cavalry alike.