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About Rainier

PC gamer, WorthPlaying EIC, globe-trotting couch potato, patriot, '80s headbanger, movie watcher, music lover, foodie and man in black -- squirrel!

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Friday June 2, 2006 Shipping Announcements

by Rainier on June 2, 2006 @ 2:00 p.m. PDT

Another day, another batch of games shipped to stores. Instead of giving them all their own posts, we grouped them, and so far there are announcements for:

  • Dropteam (PC)
  • Fetch! (PC)


  • We will update this throughout the day when new announcements become available. Read more for details...

Fetch! (PC)

THQ today announced the release of Fetch!. Published by the ValuSoft division of THQ, Fetch! is rated "E" for Everyone and is now available for Windows PC at retailers throughout North America for $19.99 SRP.

"The popularity of owning, caring for and pampering dogs is at an all time high -- canine fans from young to old will be delighted with the fun and interactive activities found in Fetch!," said Scott Zerby, Vice President of THQ's ValuSoft division. "In addition to playing, training, and bonding with their dogs, Fetch!'s Gesture Recognition System allows players to communicate a variety of commands to the pets, allowing the them to choose whether their dog will sit, jump, roll over, bark and more."

Players choose from favorite breeds, including Labradors, German Shepherds, Boxers, Chihuahuas, Dachshunds, and Beagles. Part of the fun is choosing a name for the new pet and deciding which activities to explore. Players groom and play fetch with their canine pals, and aim for training their dog to become 'Best in Show.' From competing in dog shows, to training the new dog how to sit, stay, fetch and more, there are endless activities for dog lovers. Players can even dress their dogs in outrageous outfits, including clothes, hats, and collars.

DropTeam (PC)

The unqiue "realistic" Sci-Fi tactical combat game DropTeam for the PC, Mac and Linux platforms is NOW available as digital delivery or mail delivery - or both! Experience the unique multiplayer team action in the SpaceVikings universe, or fight through an intriguing solo campaign while trying to secure resources for your LiveShip clan! No hit points, no medi packs... DropTeam features "believable combat" simulating real-world physics, ballistics, damage and much more! Featuring HUGE maps (over 1000 sqkm) and a totally new top-notch graphics engine supporting HDR, advanced shading techn ology, cross-platform multiplayer capability and extensive XML-based modding support... you just cannot afford to miss this game!

DropTeam is a multiplayer capable, real-time, tactical simulation of armored ground combat in the far future.

The game takes place on the barely settled fringes of the explored galaxy, in a region of space called “The Rim.” In The Rim, intact settlements on planets are few and far between, but beyond the influence of the civilized forces of The Mu Arae Entente. The Entente was mankind’s central governing body spanning hundreds of star systems. The Rim was settled by and flourished under free-minded separatists from the Entente. However, Mu Arae fleets and marines eventually attempted to “reintegrate” the worlds of The Rim by force, leading to hundreds of years of conflict which left all of the worlds of The Rim largely destroyed and abandoned.

The Entente has since become embroiled in its own civil war, leaving the scattered remnants of the once great cities and colonies of The Rim to their own devices in the remote emptiness of rim space. Civilization crumbles slowly in these isolated places as technology and higher knowledge gradually erode. The surviving settlements have been left vulnerable to incursions from predators who hunt The Rim for loot: a new brand of Viking who pillages from the rubble for survival, who has honed the military tactics of planetary assault to a fine art.

Engineering Vehicle digging out a trench

Some in The Rim look into the distant heart of the galaxy for their salvation. They look toward the stars of The Entente from whence their ancestors came, where civil war still rages with weapons of incredible technology, so advanced that the colonist-descendants of The Rim would perceive it as magic. Some of them wait for the return of Integration fleets, bringing the law, order, and the technology of past generations. But for most of them such things are the stuff of ancient legend. They only long to survive the next raid by plundering Vikings from the stars.

ENVIRONMENTS

DropTeam™ models large playing areas ranging from 100 to 900 square kilometers: areas large enough to realistically simulate mobile armored combat. Terrain is deformable, so explosions and engineering vehicles actually change the landscape dynamically during the game. The physics engine accurately models different types of terrain, so a nimble vehicle on asphalt roads might become slippery and hard to control when driving on frozen ice. Since combat takes place on a broad variety of planets, you will have to adapt your tactics as you play; the maneuvers that worked well in an Earth-like environment might not work as well on a planetoid with no atmosphere. Different atmospheric densities and planet gravities also have a drastic effect on the performance of your weapon systems. Solid AP projectiles are devastatingly effective at long range when there is no atmosphere to slow their flight, but in very dense atmospheres you might find yourself using HEAT munitions instea d.

COMBAT SYSTEM

DropTeam™ simulates combat realistically. The detailed armor penetration model takes all important factors into account: armor angle and thickness, projectile penetration angle, velocity, and performance characteristics based on projectile type and size (HEAT vs. AP vs. exotic ammunition, caliber, etc.) Projectiles that penetrate their targets have detailed, specific effects on the target, including modeling of armor fragmentation, fire due to kinetic friction, and direct damage of internal components within the target. For example, individual crew members such as the driver or gunner, or systems such as a vehicle’s ballistics computer, ammunition magazine, or engine might be damaged when a projectile penetrates the vehicle. The loss of these systems directly impacts the target’s performance. A vehicle without a ballistics computer will have to manually elevate its shots for range, a dead driver will prevent the vehicle from being driven, etc. Under the r ight circumstances, a penetration might even cause the target to catastrophically explode, scattering pieces across the landscape.

HE and ICM artillery support munitions are also modeled accurately, causing specific damage effects on targets that are hit by their fragmentation and munitions. Units on the terrain such as the SP Mortar unit can perform indirect fire, ranging to their targets with the help of team mates who can act as forward observers, or automated orbital artillery support can be called in, including HE and smoke fire missions.

ROLES

You can stay immersed in combat by taking your vehicle into the thick of the action, driving and gunning in real-time against the opposing team. Or you can play an indirect supporting role by dropping engineering vehicles to dig revetments for your team and lay obstacles for the enemy and by dropping support vehicles that provide benefits to your team mates. Or you can play the role of your team’s Commander, spending more of your time on the Tactical Display, coordinating the actions of your team mates, issuing direct commands to the AI players on your team, and deploying sensors, sensor jammer's, mines, and turrets to bolster your team’s position. Or you can play with your own mixture of these different styles.

MODS

The DropTeam™ engine is quite flexible. All scenario and unit data is stored in simple XML files so it’s trivial for the technically-minded player to modify existing game elements or add entirely new ones with a simple text editor. Terrain data is read from industry-standard topographic and geological file formats, so players can use software such as Terragen, Bryce, MojoWorld, or even simple paint programs to add their own custom landscapes to fight on.

DropTeam can be played online on a public server with up to 16 players as well as single-player vs. AI opponents. AI opponents can also be mixed in with human players in order to make the teams any size you like.

DropTeam runs on Mac OS-X, Linux, and Windows 98/ME/XP/2000/2003 and has been designed to be very scalable with a wide range of systems, as well as open to "modding" with extensive mod support for new scenarios and unit creations (all data is stored in simple XML files).

Features List

CROSS-PLATFORM COMPATIBILITY
. DropTeamT runs on Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Linux, and Mac OS-X. Game ships with all versions together and each game version is fully compatible with the others.

GENERAL FEATURES
. Play in a universe complete with a rich back story and detailed history.
. Realistic combat system that models projectile/ armor penetration, various munitions types, and interior vehicle damage in detail.
. Huge, detailed and varied alien landscapes each planet accurately modeling its own gravity and atmospheric density, radically changing the tactical situation.
. Map sizes up to a massive 1000 (!) square kilometers.
. Terrain height resolutions from small ridges and vehicle fighting positions to towering hills and mountains.
. Deformable terrain with engineering vehicles digging out trenches in real time, ordnance created surface cratering and even trees toppling over under artillery fire.
. Dynamic environmental effects include building destruction and vehicles exploding and flipping over.
. DropTeamT includes 20 scenarios plus a 8 mission single player campaign. New scenarios will be offered for download after the game's released plus you can create you own battles and share them with others.

SCALABILITY
. Terrain uses dynamic tessellation (conti nuous Level of Detail) to render high resolution terrain at large sizes.
. DropTeamT engine automatically adjusts level of detail based on your computer hardware. This optimizes gameplay on even older computer systems and hardware.
. DropTeamT uses the OpenGL Shading Language (GLSL) for advanced graphics effects that literally weren't possible a year ago with little to no performance impact such as rippling water and blowing foliage.

MULTIPLAYER FEATURES
. Up to 16 human players or more supported, depending on system specs. Maximum online players realistically only limited by game server bandwidth, CPU and RAM.
. Game launcher allows you to browse a list of servers that shows the servers' current scenario, current number of players, game time remaining, and connect to the game sessions at will.
. Server management functions allow administrators to login and exercise special privileges on the server, such as kicking players and moving p layers between teams. This interface is within the GUI of the game itself.
. Various game types include "Capture the Flag" and "Objective" based missions.

MODDING AND EXPANDABILITY
. Highly extensible, open architecture makes the game easy to modify, even by non-programmers.
. DropTeamT uses XML (Extensible Markup Language) files for game objects. Allows for an incredible wealth of modding options and capabilities. All information about 3D models, physics, control mechanics is encapsulated and allows specification of any arbitrary texture data for terrains, skies, and models.
. Add new vehicles, change their physics, change turrets, swap one gun for another or put a brand new gun on a existing unit and more. All of this can be achieved by editing the associated the XML files. You can also create entirely new models and textures that weren't originally included. You can even just drop in your own 3D Studio models if you want!
. Dro pTeamT engine reads data from professional GIS (Geographic Information Systems) packages such as ArcGIS and Terragen. This is the same industry standard data formats that are used by the Department of Defense for simulations and by engineers for land work, surveying, etc...

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