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    Monday, March 31, 2003
    Arx visits the Xbox - Dan - 3:15:53 PM EST
I was beginning to worry that we've heard the last from Arkane and Arx, but it seems like the world is smiling upon them. They've finally managed to grab a deal I know they've been after for a long, long time.
Toronto, Ontario, March 31, 2003 – DreamCatcher Games today announced a worldwide deal with Arkane Studios to publish Arx Fatalis for the Xbox™ video game system from Microsoft. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Arx Fatalis is a first-person RPG, which plunges players into an amazingly complex fantasy-world of trolls, goblins and ‘Snake-women’. Creating weapons, solving puzzles and completing amazing quests, gamers become heroes as they battle in an evil world. Players will also need to master a unique real-time magic system to cast more than 50 different spells based on 20 different runes.

Arx Fatalis takes full advantage of the power of Xbox, utilizing the unique asset-caching tools for smoother play and the amazing processing power to support complex A.I. Arx Fatalis will also take advantage of Xbox’s superb Dolby-Digital Surround Sound and unique hard-drive.

“The signing of Arx Fatalis is a signal that DreamCatcher is serious about publishing great console games,” said Richard Wah Kan, CEO of DreamCatcher Interactive Inc. “The game has had great success on the PC, and we’re confident that we’ll have even more success on Xbox.”

“We’re very excited about developing Arx Fatalis for Xbox,” said Raphael Colantonio, CEO of Arkane Studios. “The console has great capabilities which will allow us to give gamers the best version of Arx Fatalis they could ever dream of!”

Arx Fatalis will ship to stores in Winter 2003 with a suggested retail price of $39.99 (USD). The ESRB rating has yet to be announced.

I hope that this thing sell-sell-sells... I want an Arx 2!

    Friday, March 28, 2003
     Arx 2 News! - Darkwarrior - 11:40:36 PM EST
New information about Arx Fatalis 2 has been released in a French interview with Raphael Colantonio (the designer of Arx Fatalis)!

You can read the interview here--although you'll need to be able to read French in order to get the gist of it. From what I can gather, with my mediocre grasp of the French language and help from TTLG forum-goers, the interview alludes to gameplay similar to that found in Thief, System Shock, and Deus Ex. Apparently outdoor environments will also be found in the game, which should be very interesting.

As in the original, Arx 2 will focus greatly on immersion and detail, as well as "clarifying" puzzles and problems for the user. Apparently a lot of players became lost in the first game and complained about this.

Discuss the article in TTLG's forums!

    Tuesday, March 25, 2003
     News Update - Darkwarrior - 8:08:23 PM EST
The Stygian Abyss hasn't been updated in a long time, so I've decided to do a few mini-reports on events that have transpired in the Ultima world for the past two months. Some of the Ultima remake websites were down while I was trying to find news, so I'll try them again later. Here are the main stories:

Help Make Arx a Better Game
Arkane Studios is asking players to come participate in its online Arx Fatalis community at Come give the developers your suggestions, advice, or complaints--perhaps they will heed your words and take them into account on their next project.

As an aside, Arkane released the 1.16a patch for Arx Fatalis on February 11th. If you don't have it already, you can grab it here.

"New" Version of Underworld Adventures
You may already know this, but the team developing UWA has released a new version of its game, called "Muffin." It features initial conversation support and 3D models for static objects. Take a look at the UWA website.

Era Screenshots
"New" screenshots of the Ultima shoot-off Era are available at the game's website. It's looking better than ever; you can also check out an interview Peroxide conducted with RPGDot here.

Exult Update
The Ultima 7 port, Exult, received an update about two weeks ago. You can take a look here.