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SUNDAY, MAY 31st, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

One more level, coming soon...

Soldier of Fortune by Neil is posted with a 85 rating.

The Reckoning

If you don't have this mission pack yet...GO GET IT!! I recommend this thing unreservedly! This is the best Q2 experience you can have to date. Go... go.... get it!!

Today's Quote

"MMMmmmm, now that's a damn good burger!"
--from Pulp Fiction


SATURDAY, MAY 30th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

I still have 2 new maps coming soon... stay tuned :)

Storage by Peter is posted with a 91 rating.

crash Roars

The Quake reviewer of yore, crash, has posted a mega review of Unreal at his site. Unlike most reviews, which have put Unreal as the game of the year, crash points out both the good and bad... but be warned, he has found a lot more bad than good :)

Today's Quote

"We're gonna be here a loooooong time, man. I spilled pop!!"
--An old friend from back in my 'wild' days, under the influence of... well, many things :)


FRIDAY, MAY 29th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

Hello everyone. Sorry about the lack of updates... I've been caught up in the Reckoning mission pack, job hunting, trying to get back in shape (jogging is a killer when it's been 3 years since I've done it!), and playing lots of Minesweeper (no, seriously:).

I do have two new levels downloaded, and I promise at least one of them will be posted before the end of today (USA EDT), and I'll get the other posted before the weekend is over.

The Reckoning

More praise for this fine pack. I am done with the second Unit now, and am still amazed at the high quality of this product. I have encountered the most clever secret area in my memory, and the levels are as large and wonderful as any in the full game. The Hard setting is tough, but could be harder IMHO. I intend to play it on Skill 3 when I finish. So far, the quality I spoke of in yesterday's update is holding strong, and the new Ion Ripper weapon is very cool. Great sound, good power, a fun new tool in the Q2 arsenal.

Minesweeper

Anyone out there play this game? I'm a junkie for it, and have been for 5 years :)

Here's a listing of my high scores:

Beginner: 12 sec.
Intermediate: 100 sec.
Expert: 458 sec.

Anyone out there care to send along your personal bests? Anyone do better than me? Anyone else actually play this thing? Go ahead and mail me.

Today's Quote

Sign in the window of a Kentucky appliance store:
--"Don't kill your wife. Let our washing machine do the dirty work."


WEDNESDAY, MAY 27th, 1998

Q2 RECKONING !!

16:37 (EDT) RECKONING UPDATE

WOW! This mission pack rocks so far! The levels are huge and intricate, and require plenty of thought to find your way out. There are lots of 'out of the way' items, that make you stay alert, and keep you wondering "now how do I get there?" And those are not not the secrets! The secret areas are nice. I've not found a "shoot button - open panel" secret yet. They are well concealed, and lead to nice secret areas. There are plenty of items that require a sharp eye and plenty of skill to get, and you'd swear that they're a secret, but nope...

I'm a bit dissapointed in the Gekks. They are pretty slow, and the acid is no big deal. I found a weird quirk on the first level, where a Gekk was inside the ground, and trapped there... I couldn't shoot him, but he could shoot me. Mildly annoying. That aside, my experience has been wonderful so far, the levels are beautiful to admire, the Strogg and item placement is nearly perfect, making for a good challenge, but not frustratingly so. Based on the 3 levels I've seen, I'm giving this pack an enthusiastic recommendation. Go get it! If anyone has any questions for me, or would like to talk about Q2, Unreal, Spq2 levels, or this new Mission Pack, feel free to mail me and I'll be happy to correspond.

***************************************************************************************

15:00 (EDT)

Howdy, all. I got an unsuspected surprise today as I called to see when the Reckoning mission pack would be in, and the girl on the phone said, "It's here right now". Needless to say, I've got my copy installed, and here's a screenshot and a few bits of news!


A shot showing off how a new Strogg, the GEKK, looks after you have gotten the best of him (her?).

New additions:
The story is: You play a character who was launched just like in the Q2 game, but your pod clips and asteroid on the way in. Your pod crash lands in a pool of water. You wake up with your shotgun within reach, and the sounds of Gekk (Gekks?) around the corner...

Requires 100 meg min. install, and 160 meg full install. The opening cimematic is decent, but no where near as cool as the full game cinematic. The install automatically upgrades Q2 to ver. 3.15 -- and those old save games are worthless. I've only played a few minutes of the first level, and the new rock textures (see pic.) are good looking, the lay-out is great, Strogg and item placement seem fair, and it's a good challenge so far. Welp, back to it :)

SPQ2 Reviews

A couple more maps are on their way...

Weapons Distribution Facility a 2 map set by SnAz is posted with a 89 rating.

SPQ2 News

Once again, you can go to Fugue, and find an excellent Spq2 author resource. It's the Creonomicon, and there just happens to be an essay on Spq2 challenge by yours truly posted there... part 1 of a series. Go check it out!

Today's Quote

"You can lead a horse to water but............................how?"
--A first grade teacher collected old, well known proverbs. She gave each child in her class the first half of a proverb, and had them come up with the rest.


TUESDAY, MAY 26th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

Much to my surprise, there will be new entries to post here later on today. I hadn't expected anything, but thanks to SnAz, from SnAz's Spq2 for sending along a few leads :)

There is a fantastic new resource for Quake2 authors posted over at Fugue. It's called the Creonomicon, and I really recommend giving it a look.

Today's Quote

"Be careful down there on Earth. It's awful close to the ground, and somebody could get hurt."
--Astronaut David Wolf


MONDAY, MAY 25th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

Waiting to Die a 3 map Unit by Marty is posted with a 102 rating.

Eq2_Sp2 by Erik is posted with a 58 rating.

Today's Quote

Actual comment received in 1996 from the Bridger Wilderness registration sheets and comment cards:
--"Trails need to be wider so people can walk while holding hands."


SATURDAY, MAY 23rd, 1998

SPQ2 News

Nothin' doin' on this scene.

UNREAL

Here's my first Unreal screenshot for you to gander at. After some extended play time, I must admit that the game plays OK on my system... as long as there are no more than 2 baddies on the screen at once. Once there are 3 it's... well it's bad.

OK... now that I've delved into the game a bit (level 4) I'll offer up some more thoughts.
At first I hated the idea of no kill count, or secret count. I even thought there were no secrets. Now I've found a few (secrets), and I realize that by not counting kills and secret finds, I'm concentrating a lot more on the GAME experience. I'm delving into it, like a good book. The scripted events take the game to a whole new level. It feels more interactive, pulling the player into the story, to become a part of it.

I also love the idea of various classes of aliens. So far I've only faced Lesser Brute's and Skaarj Scout's, which act much more intelligently than any other monster AI I've seen. They duck, roll, strafe, anticipate... It's a pleasure to watch them in action, and they make for a great fight. The Nali are incredible, with their mystical aura and dignified mannerisms. I accidentally shot one, and actually felt bad. On the third level, one helped me, and then was killed by a Skaarj. I played the level over and over until I found a way to get rid of the Skaarj, so the Nali could live :). There are only 7 variety of aliens in the manual, but with a rank system... there are actually a lot more. Plus the manual hints that there are some unlisted denizens... I love the 'mystery' of it!

The texture/architecture is growing on me. At first the textures seemed too busy, and the arhitecture seemed less inspired than that of Q2. After extended play I've grown to like it, enjoying the difference of it, the alien feel. The lay-out is fantastic, but unfortunately, one cannot got back to completed areas. As I am known to run back and gather health from previous areas, this dissapointed me a bit. I suppose I'm beginning to love the game for what it is... without thinking of Q2 as I play it... Well... there are still about 35 levels to go, we'll see how it goes. I find myself enjoying this game as though it were a story and not a game, which pleases me greatly. Oh, and those who wonder about my change of heart about the slowdown... well, I've cheated. I downloaded all new BIOS, power-management drivers, and overclocked my P166 to run at 200. These changes have lead to some significant boosts in system performance. My Q2 timedemo went from 29.6 FPS to 34.9 FPS... =).

Today's Quote

"Quake what?? ... huh?? Leave me alone, I'm playing Unreal...
--Tron ;)


FRIDAY, MAY 22nd, 1998

UNREAL

Well, I've had a chance to play through some Unreal, and I must say I'm happy, and disappointed. The minimum requirements are a P166 with 16 meg ram, I have a P166mmx, 64 meg ram, 8 meg CL Voodoo2, and still find the gameplay to be very poor and choppy when the action heats up, even with a low screen res, and low texture detail. I must admit that the game is very beautiful though... and the opening level is really great, oozing with atmosphere and a few surprises. Outdoor areas are detailed, with insects, birds, small animals, and an amazing sky animation. I wish I could play this thing at a good framerate... but when the action heats up, I actually had problems strafeing as the the game didn't seem to process my input propery. My weapon fired erratically, and movement was irregular. I really don't know if I'll be able to play this without upgrading (or overclocking) my system. I have also heard from a couple of people with P200, and P233 systems that were experiencing choppiness and slowdown (though not as bad as what I had)

There are a few bugs as well, if you have A3D support, don't bother to turn it on, as sounds get 'stuck' and become very annoying (GT is aware of this, and researching the cause). The 'center view' key doesn't function (another bug that is known to GT, and will be fixed in an upcoming patch), and my joystick was strafeing me left and right instead of turning me left and right (but that problem was correctable via the .ini file -- change the "JoyX=Axis astrafe speed=2" to "JoyX=Axis aBaseX speed=2" and the problem goes away).

I guess the verdit is this: If you have a very powerful system (PII266 or better) you are a very lucky person, and will likely be experiencing a game that will make you forget about Quake2... but the rest of us will be suffering choppy play, and wishing for an upgrade.

SPQ2 Reviews

Military Outpost by Charlie is posted with a 95 rating.

Today's Quote

Actual comment received in 1996 from the Bridger Wilderness registration sheets and comment cards:
--"A small deer came into my camp and stole my jar of pickles. Is there a way I can get reimbursed? Please call __ __ __."


THURSDAY, MAY 21st, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

Timebase Alpha by Fred is posted with a 74 rating.

There's at least one more new offering coming soon...

3D Game News

As I'm sure you all know, Unreal could be available as soon as tommorow... oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!

Today's Quote

What sane person could live in this world and not be crazy?
--Ursula K. Leguin


TUESDAY, MAY 19th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

OK... it's finally ready!

Structural Mechanics by David is posted with a 91 rating.

3D Game News

I called CompUSA today... no word from them on the Unreal shipment, except to say it'll retail for $54.99, and be available soon. :)

Today's Quote

"Computers in the future may weigh no more than 1.5 tons"
--Popular Mechanics, 1949


MONDAY, MAY 18th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

Borax II by Dennis is posted with an 89 rating.

A previously released level that has been completely rebuilt is next on my list... stay tuned.

3D Game News

It appears that Activision has announced a second mission pack for Quake 2. Ground Zero will include 15 new levels, plus new weapons, Strogg, and power-ups. It's done by Rogue who produced the Quake 1 mission pack Dissolution of Eternity. I've noticed that the box for Reckoning is on display at some stores now as well...

Today's Quote

"Time's fun when you're having flies."
--Kermit the Frog


SUNDAY, MAY 17th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

An apology/correction goes out to Mr. Waters, who I mistakenly refered to as Mr. Walters. Go check out his new map Covert Operation. Sorry Dave!

Tab5: House of Jorg by Michael is posted with a 96 rating.

Second Wave by Gordon is posted with an 80 rating.

3D Game News

Bad news for fans of the Star Trek universe. The FPS game Star Trek: First Contact which was to use the Unreal engine, has been cancelled. Fortunately, work on Klingon Honor Guard another FPS to use the Unreal engine will continue.

The Star Wars Quake team has done a mega-update, bring nearly every aspect of the page up to date. Go give it a look, and see what these creative folks are up to!

New Link

I have posted a link to a The Forbidden Zone, a level review site. Be sure to brush up on your German before you go there, as the site is not in English, but German.

Today's Quote

Actual comment received in 1996 from the Bridger Wilderness registration sheets and comment cards:
--"Found a smoldering cigarette left by a horse."


SATURDAY, MAY 16th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

Welp, I'm back, and here's the first offering off the presses...

Covert Operation by David is posted with a 95 rating.

Stay tuned for at least 2 new entries coming soon :)

Today's Quote

Actual comment received in 1996 from the Bridger Wilderness registration sheets and comment cards:
--"The coyotes made too much noise last night and kept me awake. Please eradicate these annoying animals."


FRIDAY, MAY 15th, 1998

I'm Back!

Howdy everyone. I'm back from my vacation extravaganza. It seems not a whole lot of action took place on the Spq2 scene while I was away, but there are 2 new units that I'll be sinking my teeth into within the day. For those intereseted... I had a great time. I drank lots of "33", met the Star Wars critters, saw a few ball games at Camden Yards, got mild sun burn, rode a water-taxi, saw a big lumpy Albert Einstein statue, saw a film in a new 'stadium style' movie theater, put over 1,100 miles on my Grand AM, met some great people, and walked until my legs were in agony :) (Tron)

See you all soon with an update!!


SUNDAY, MAY 10th, 1998

The Wanderer

Howdy folks... Ol' Tron is off on a vacation. Since I will have no internet access whilst I'm away, there will be no updates for the next few days. Hopefully I'll come back from my much needed break refreshed, and ready to get into a reviewing frenzy. If you happen to live in the Baltimore/D.C. area, keep an eye out for a glowing blue guy carrying a frisbee =)

In The Meantime...

If you need something to keep you busy... go grab a copy of Abyss of Pandemonium a Quake1 pack featuring 10 single player, and 6 multi-player levels, new weapons, monsters, and sounds. The publisher (Instant Access) decided not to give the Impel Developement Team any credit on the box, so Impel is fighting back by offering the full retail version as downloadable shareware for free (though they request a registration fee if you finish the single player game, or play multi-player frequently) So... grab a free download while it's available, and enjoy! I've played a few minutes worth, and it seems pretty promising...

Quote (make it last... savor it!)

"So, you see, you start with a smaller goal, and work your way up to a larger one... so I could make some toast, which could lead to a sandwhich, which might lead to my own space program."
--Steven Wright


SATURDAY, MAY 9th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

Shipping & Receiving by Jeff is posted with an 86 rating.

Termination by Sector is posted with a 65 rating.

Hello all... good news for many of you as the low memory version of Chemical Plant has been released. I have posted a link to the original as well as the new version on it's review page... go get 'em!

Today's Quote

Actual comment received in 1996 from the Bridger Wilderness registration sheets and comment cards:
--"Ban walking sticks in wilderness. Hikers that use walking sticks are more likely to chase animals"


FRIDAY, MAY 8th, 1998

Happy Prayer Day (Denmark) and Happy Victory Day (France)

SPQ2 Reviews

Anthrax by Stephan is posted with a 75 rating.

Today's Quote

"It is by the goodness of God that in our country we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either of them"
--Mark Twain


THURSDAY, MAY 7th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

HEY!!! =) Hi there everyone... I just had some correspondance with Matt Barnett, author of Chemical Plant, who informed me that his recently released map requires 64 meg of ram, and not the 32 meg noted in the read.me. So... if you are one of those out there with less than 64 meg, there is some good news for you if you'd like to play this fine example of a Spq2 map. Matt will be releasing the map in a 2 level version for lower memory systems... it will be a few days before it is available, but I'll be sure to keep you posted as to it's status - stay tuned! (Tron)

Well, here it is, the updated Nailbomb, and this Unit really rocks now! If you played it before... so what!?! Play it again... it's that much better!

NailBomb a 3 level unit by Jason is posted with a 100 rating.

Also... Nailbomb is not the only map that underwent a rework, there's another one out there that is very close to completion. I've been doing some beta work on it, and believe me... it's much better than the original release. It's a big, complicated map, and will take a couple of days to compile it, but it will be here soon. -- (Tron)

And... in other news, some new Spq2 is being downloaded onto my HD right at this very moment. Stay tuned for new reviews within the day! (Tron)

Skittles

I'd just like to take a moment and say that I really love Skittles, a delicious sweet and sour sugar candy in a rainbow of flavors and colors. mmmmmmmmm :)

Today's Quote

Sign in a clothing store window:
--"Wonderful bargains for men with 16 and 17 necks."


WEDNESDAY, MAY 6th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

Chemical Plant by gIbBeR aka Matt Barnettis posted with a 98 rating.

Cold Fusion by [SkunK]Azeed is posted with a 68 rating.

Today's Quote

On a sign in the offices of a loan company:
--"Ask about our plans for owning your home."


TUESDAY, MAY 5th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

I recently played through a map which the author had rebuilt after releasing it with a somewhat mediocre rating a month or two ago. The new version really rocks, and will hopefully be available to everyone real soon now... stay tuned :) -Tron-

I finally got a few fresh levels downloaded, so expect one or 2 new entries here within the day =).

Also.. I just got a hold of an updated Nailbomb, with skill settings... I'll play it and post it later on today as well... I know, nothing but promises so far... but good things are coming!

Today's Quote

"If you're going to do something tonight that you'll be sorry for tomorrow, sleep late."
--Henny Youngman


MONDAY, MAY 4th, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

Well... CDROM still hasn't freed up their copy, so I'm posting a local copy until it's available... :) -Tron-

Pharm a 4 level unit by KNEEL is posted with an 75 rating.

Today's Quote

"I've always thought that underpopulated countries in Africa are vastly underpolluted."
-- Lawrence Summers, chief economist of the World Bank, explaining why we should export toxic wastes to Third World countries.


SUNDAY, MAY 3rd, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

Well, it's Sunday at 11:35pm (EDT) and still no access to the Unit on CDROM... maybe tomorrow?

The Powersphere Quest a 5 level unit by Cedar is posted with an 110 rating!!!

NailBomb a 3 level unit by Jason is posted with an 88 rating.

New Addition

I have added a statment to my Spq2 guide which says this: From now on, any level that cannot provide me with at least a decent challenge at Skill setting 2 will not be rated any higher than 89. I have been so disappointed with Skill 2 challenge lately that this is a necessary evil which I must employ.

Today's Quote

"The crime bill passed by the Senate would reinstate the Federal death penalty for certain violent crimes: assassinating the President; hijacking an airliner; and murdering a government poultry inspector."
-- Knight Ridder News Service dispatch


SATURDAY, MAY 2nd, 1998

SPQ2 Reviews

I have a review of a new Unit, but am waiting for cdrom to free it up before I post it, hopefully it will be available before tomorrow --- stay tuned :)

Interview

Yours truly is interviewed over at the Quake Workshop2.

2000!

No, not the year 2000, but my 2000th hit! Thanks to everyone for the increasing popularity of this site =)

Thanks

Thanks to those who send me mail about my recent loss, I appreciate your concern :)

Today's Quote

"After finding no qualified candidates for the position of principal, the school board is extremely pleased to announce the appointment of David Steele to the post."
-- Philip Streifer, Superintendent of Schools, Barrington, Rhode Island


FRIDAY, MAY 1st, 1998

R.I.P.

Fritz the Brave defeats Boba Fett, and then relaxes amongst the shoes after his conquest.

Sad news for me today as my long time companion and room-mate had to be put to sleep after fighting with stomach problems for the past month. He was only 8 which is still quite young for a cat, but when you spend your days fighting bounty hunters, it's bound to catch up to you after a while... May he sleep amongst the shoes in Kitty Heaven.

SPQ2 Reviews

Nothing here yet... but I just caught news of a new Unit just around the corner!

Today's Quote

"Time is the fire in which we burn"
--Dr. Soran (Malcolm McDowell) to Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) in the film Generations.