Hot games will arrive in fall, winter

September 21, 1998|By Michael Stroh | Michael Stroh,Sun Staff

Some of this Christmas season's hottest computer games are being crafted right in your own back yard. Here are a few titles to look for in the coming months from local game makers (all are written for Windows 95/98):

One of the most anticipated is Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri from Firaxis Games. Meier and collaborator Brian Reynolds, the duo responsible for best-selling historical strategy games such as Civilization II and Gettysburg, are quickly establishing themselves as the Lennon-McCartney of the strategy gaming world.

Alpha Centauri, however, is Meier's first foray into the future. The plot is simple: A group of 22nd century colonists is heading toward the Alpha Centauri star system. As the ship approaches, a wayward asteroid strikes, forcing the crew to make an emergency landing on a lonely planet. In the ensuing chaos, the group splits into seven factions, each with its own political agenda. Players take control a faction and figure out how to survive on their strange and hostile new world.

The game involves the same themes that make all of Meier's simulations so addictive - discovery, exploration, building and conquest - with richly detailed 3-D terrain and multiplayer support.

If you're itching to kick some alien butt in real time, check out Star Trek: The Next Generation Klingon Honor Guard. Developed by MicroProse's Hunt Valley team, this is a first person shoot-em-up that employs the same eye-popping 3-D graphics technology used in GT Interactive's current best-seller Unreal.

The plot (such as it is): After an assassination attempt on Klingon leader, you're dispatched to find the culprit and blast your way through space stations, star ships and alien cities.

If the movie "Saving Private Ryan" piqued your World War II curiosity, take a look at Axis and Allies by Meyer-Glass Interactive and West Front by TalonSoft - two combat strategy games due this fall. Axis and Allies, based on the classic Milton-Bradley board game should appeal to gamers of all ages and will be published by Hasbro Interactive. The hard-core West Front is for armchair generals who revel in the details of waging war.

Sports fans can get behind the wheel of a Formula One race car in Intense Entertainment's forthcoming Johnny Herbert's Grand Prix, coming this fall.

Armchair quarterbacks will have to wait until spring to sample BreakAway Games' still-untitled football epic - designed by the same folks who created gridiron hit ABC Monday Night Football.

For more information, check out the following Web sites:


Firaxis Games:

Hasbro Interactive:


Origin Systems:

BreakAway Games:

Intense Entertainment:

InterAct Accessories:

ISM Interactive:

Pub Date: 9/21/98

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