Master of Orion III goes gold, Mac version close behind

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Game development studio Quicksilver Software Inc. has announced that its long awaited epic space strategy game Master of Orion III has gone gold master.

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Master of Orion III puts players in control of entire galactic civilizations. You'll become intimately involved with not only the overriding concerns of your interstellar power -- technology and defense spending, colonization and fleet movements -- but you'll also manipulate details behind the scenes by affecting the roles of politicians, citizens and spies.

Master of Orion III incorporates a vast single player game and support for up to 8 players in turn-based multiplayer mode. The game also features 16 distinctive alien races each with their own strengths and weaknesses. Quicksilver calls Master of Orion III a "5x" strategy game: Explore, Expand, Exploit, Exterminate and Experience grand strategy.

Most Mac game conversions take months to produce after their PC counterparts have been released, as the Mac development often happens with a third-party Mac game conversion specialist based on final or near final code produced by the original game developer. Mac and Windows development of Master of Orion III, however, has been happening simultaneously in the offices of Quicksilver Software.

So while this gold master news is specific to the PC version, Quicksilver isn't far behind in developing the Mac version. Quicksilver's resident Mac maestro, Tim Hume, dropped MacCentral a line to let us know his progress. "I should have the Mac version done in a few (very few) days," he said.

PC game publisher Infogrames has announced that the PC version of Master of Orion III will hit store shelves by the end of February. So far, however, there's been no official word from Infogrames' Mac subsidiary MacSoft about when its customers can expect the Mac version. MacSoft has been touting the game in earnest to Mac players since the spring of 2001. The Mac version is expected to run on Mac OS 8.6 or better. MacCentral will bring readers more details as they become available.

This story, "Master of Orion III goes gold, Mac version close behind" was originally published by PCWorld.

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