Offerings from MacPlay
Volume Number: 19 (2003)
Issue Number: 10
Column Tag: Review
Offerings from MacPlay
Waste time, have fun
by Michael R. Harvey
MacPlay are the folks who bring some of the greatest games you can lose hours of your life with to the Mac platform. Following is a round up of some of their current offerings.
No, no one lives forever, not even in video games. Particularly not in this first person shooter. In No One Lives Forever, you take on the Role of Kate Archer, femme fatale, secret agent. She exists in the world of the super spy of the 60's. This game takes its cues from all the great spy flicks of that time. This FPS is much like many others in the genre, except it's a lot more fun. Playing as a woman is different from most any other similar game, it's got a good story, and a better soundtrack. In fact, you get a bonus audio disc with some very groovy tunes on it. Well worth your time. Also note that by the time you read this, MacPlay will have released part two in this series, subtitled A Spy in H.A.R.M.'s Way, and promising to be a worthy successor to this first episode.
Not if this guy has anything do to with it
Another FPS that takes on some of the more traditional aspects of this kind of game is Solider of Fortune II: Double Helix. Here you play, and kill, as mercenary John Mullins, sent out on various missions with the ultimate goal of stopping a terrorist organization from releasing the deadly virus they have in hand. Even though it's much like many other shooters, it is a fun ride. The system requirements are fairly modest, and the graphics are quite good. If this kind of game is your thing, Soldier of Fortune II worth adding to your collection
At your keyboard, everyone can hear you scream
Aliens vs. Predator 2 is the stunning sequel to the original game that released on the Mac in 2001. This game takes you to planet LV1201 to continue the battle as either a killer Alien, the powerful Predator, or the well armed Colonial Marine. AvP2 is just as frightening and spellbinding as the first one was. Play it in a dark room with surround sound, and you'll swear you can feel the breath of the bad guys on your neck. Truly a great game. And, if you never had a chance to play the first installment, you can buy it directly form MacPlay for five bucks.
Roll playing in a new way
Many folks are addicted to these fantasy, and Dungeons and Dragons style games. The one thing so many of them have in common is the time and place they are set in. Far in the past, in the mystical land of something-or-other. Not so with the Fallout series. The first came to the Mac for OS 9, and was a big hit, in part because it was different from all the others in the genre. Fallout was set in the not too distant future, taking place in a post-apocalyptic Southern California. Fallout 2 was recently released for OS X, carrying forward the story. Beyond that, though, there is very little to differentiate part two from part one. The graphics were not improved for the sequel, and the game play is identical. If you enjoy this genre, and are not concerned with top of the line graphics, then this game is for you. Also, you can add the original Fallout to your collection, as it has been re-released for OS X and offered by MacPlay in their Value Series.
Freedom Force is yet another genre of game that has been given a new, and refreshing twist. This third person perspective game, that actually incorporates both 3D role playing and strategy into the game play, takes you back to a decade filled with colorful super heroes, and fiendish villains. Set in Patriot City, you command the forces of good set against an other worldly evil bent on world domination. I know, sounds like any four b-movies you've ever seen, but this game is truly enjoyable. Another title well worth your play time.
All of the games we've talked about up until now have fairly big costs in time and commitment attached to them. If you don't have that kind of desire to play, don't have the time, or just don't want to burn the brain cells on high speed games, consider the following. First up is The Super GameHouse Solitaire Collection. Twenty various solitaire card games. A dream come true for card players. The games look good, and play quickly on nearly any hardware. Next is Snowball Run, an odd little game in which you steer a penguin on a snowball around various tracks. You are trying to get the little guy from one end to the other as quickly as possible, while also running over various goodies. This game really didn't do it for me. It looks nice, but just never captured my attention. Two other titles that fit in this category come on one CD. High Roller and Power Chips are both Las Vegas styled puzzle games. Extremely simple to learn, and nearly as addictive. Think about how badly Tetris sucked you in, and you've just about got it. In Power Chips, you click away at groups of the same chips (must be three or more). For High Roller, you click on two adjacent boxes to switch them to get a combination of three or more identical boxes in a row. Real easy to play, and real easy to lose time playing.
These titles are just some of the many games available from MacPlay. Nearly everyone will be able to find something that will appeal to them from the array of titles on hand. Be sure to take a look at their Value Series. MacPlay has put up some popular, older titles, for a really great price. Enjoy!
Michael R. Harvey