MacSoft: Unreal Tournament 2004 goes gold

Destineer subsidiary MacSoft on Monday announced that the Mac OS X conversion of Unreal Tournament 2004 has gone gold master. The game is now in duplication, and Mac gamers can expect to see a "nearly simultaneous" release with their Windows counterparts. The Windows version went GM about a week ago.

Unreal Tournament 2004 is the latest entry in the long-running futuristic gladiatorial combat game. You don armor and weaponry and blast the heck out of your opponents in this first person action game.

The sequel to Unreal Tournament 2003, this new version adds the ability to take control of land and air vehicles, use of new weaponry like mines, rocket-propelled grenades and stationary gun turrets. Large new arenas have been added, and two game types are added to the mix as well -- Assault (actually returning to the game after an absence from 2003) and Onslaught. The UnrealTV system lets players watch other players duke it out, while the Skaarj -- a powerful race of aliens -- return as playable characters.

Despite the short delay, MacSoft's efforts with Unreal Tournament 2004 are a world away from its predecessor, which shipped many months after its PC counterpart. The Mac version of Unreal Tournament 2004 was developed in-house by the game's original developer, Epic Games. Epic's Ryan Gordon handled the conversion.

Gordon's efforts took a few extra days after the PC version was declared GM so he could work out some last-minute issues, including the resolution of a bug that dramatically affected performance on single-processor Mac systems. That fix is rolled into the gold master version now in duplication by MacSoft. Gordon has indicated that the fix should be available as an update to the previously released demo version, also. So if you've seen unsatisfactory performance with the demo thus far and your Mac meets the system requirements, hold tight: A fix is on the way.

System requirements for UT 2K4 call for a G4/933MHz or faster; Mac OS X v10.2.8, 256MB RAM, 32MB AGP-based video card, DVD drive, 6GB hard disk space. An Internet or LAN connection is required for online play. MacSoft also notes that some maps and game types are playable on 800MHz or faster processors.

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