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    Saturday - 5.28.1999
    Copies of System Shock 1 For Sale - 7:20am EST - Dan
Will Stevenson reports that a store near him has five or so copies of System Shock in the EA Classics box. Email him if you want him to buy a copy for you!



    Bring System Shock 2 to the Mac Petition - 7:20am EST - Dan
Hey, why not? More sales is more sales. Although I doubt that it would sell enough copys these days to justify the move, here it is.



    Deus Ex Developers Opinions on SS2 - 7:20am EST - Dan
Deus Ex, the upcoming sci-fi 1st person rpg from ION Storm, will be the first game to challenge SS2's title of "Best Computer Game Ever". Let's see what two of the project leaders have to say about SS2:
Warren Spector:
System Shock 2 was like seeing an old girlfriend but discovering she's even cooler now than she was when you were dating. Being shown Shock 2 by some of the guys who worked on the original was a little slice of old home week. The gameplay looks rock solid. I can't wait to play the whole thing.

Harvey Smith:
But as far as e3 goes, system shock 2 gets my vote. (i also picked up a beta test copy there.) my reaction so far: SHOCK 2 IS GOING TO CHANGE THE WAY PEOPLE PLAY AND DESIGN PC GAMES FOR YEARS AND YEARS TO COME.

Their opinions may slighty be influenced by the fact that one was the producer of SS1, and the other a lead QA of SS1, (you all knew that, right? :) but that's beside the point!





    Saturday - 5.22.1999
    New Screenshots From PCGamer Preview - 1:35pm EST - Dan
PCGamer brings us some 'new' System Shock 2 screenshots. However I am almost sure that these are very old screenshots. They are also very poorly compressed. The image quality is horrible, yet the file size is still large.

Midwife Singin' the Blues
Poor Midwife is sad, sad, sad, cuz we iz gonna kill her little baby slugs. Seriously though, someone maxed out on the blue colored lighting in this area.

She's Got Them Blues Bad!
Different shot of the same area. This must be a (I hope), early model of this enemy. I wonder what's going on in that fuzzy area about the barrel of the gun...

Hey! Hey! It's the Monkeys!
Someone did not appreciate the mop-top hairstyle of The Monkeys, so they decided to cleave the scalp offa these poor critters. SHODAN is just mean like that.

Nerve Center or Spiders' Nest?
Seeing the below screenshot before this one, my first thought was that this is some type of spiders nest. However after thinking about it, I figured it may also be some type of nerve center that these spiders (below) are guarding.

More Nasty Spiders
Time to see SS2's spider critter up close. Too close. Yicky.

I'm about dyin to see some cyborg screenshots!





    Thursday - 5.20.1999
    She's Alive - But Not For Long! - 12:35pm EST - Dan
Here's more on the live human we saw in a screenshot a while back:
I can verify that when Ken Levine was showing me Shock2 at E3, that he said it was a real human. However, that was the only time I saw her. She also screamed by the way.
Thanks, K.C.!



    Job Openings at Irrational Games - 12:15pm EST - Dan
Do you want to work at Irrational? Who wouldn't? Don't answer that. If you do, and you can, here's the info.
Irrational Games is looking to fill several programming positions on our upcoming projects. All of these positions are for talented programmers who want to work with one of the most successful and innovative game design teams around. All applicants should be familiar with C++, experience with DirectX is helpful.

Senior Programmer (3D Graphics).
This position is for a senior programmer with at several years experience in 3D graphics programming. Youíll help us build rendering technology for our next generation of 3D role playing and action games. Games experience helpful, but not necessary. Familiarity with DirectX and 3D hardware necessary.

Lead Programmer (Game Systems/Architecture).
This position is for a senior programmer with several years experience in the games industry. Youíll be in charge of architecting one of our upcoming 3D titles and supervising the programming team. You should be ready to step into a technical management role and have demonstrated ability to do so.

Junior Programmers.
Several entry level positions exist for smart programmers who want to enter the games industry. No previous games experience necessary. Passion for games development and technical smarts required. You should be motivated and ready to learn. Evidence of interest and ability to work on games (demos and prototypes) very helpful.

Irrational Games is located in Cambridge, MA. We have a comprehensive health and benefits package available to all employees. Irrational Games is an equal opportunity employer.

All applicants should submit resumes, demos of previous games (where possible) and code samples (required) to:

Irrational Games
Attention: Ken Levine
60 Kirkland Street Suite 2R
Cambridge, MA 02138

or: bizdevelopment@irrational-games.com

Times like these, I wish I lived in MA. Oh yes, and I also whish I knew a thing about C++



    SS2 is a Success at E3! - 12:05pm EST - Dan
It seems that System Shock 2 did quite well for itself at E3! AVault gave SS2 one of their ten "Best of Show Awards", and said this about it:
The creepiest game at the show had to be Irrational Games' System Shock 2. Equipped with a familiar whacked-out soundtrack, Shock 2 uses a re-engineered version of the Thief: The Dark Project engine and, to our liking, it's the best looking first-person RPG we saw at the show, and one of the smartest, too. Shock 2's artificial intelligence model can communicate with itself and makes excellent use of its environment, such as utilizing security cameras to track and surround the player. Picture a futuristic RPG similar to the original with scripting akin to Half-Life, but completely open-ended. Its depth, powerful but easy-to-use interface and non-linear gameplay were very impressive, and made it one of the ten best games at the E3.
They made it sound impressive! That's becasue it is! SS2 was not only popular with the press, but with the public! In a poll given by GameSpot.com, System Shock 2 got 2nd place for most anticipated RPG, beating out Might & Magic 7, Ultima Ascension, Vampire, Deus Ex, Planescape, etc. Now that is awesome.

Furthermore, I received this Email with some very... interesting... information.

"Oh my god" was the first thought when I saw the fresh cover of a pc games magazine at the news stand this morning. SS2 made the headline but that is not the reason for my outburst. The reason is the cover photography.

You have to know that this special magazine tries to gather a higher market share off from its two biggest competitors by printing more or less scantily clad models on top of its cover. Those models wear accessories associated with computer games, for example camouflage (C&C) or leather (Drakan) etc.

Associated with SS2 we see the upper half of a nude lady in silver bodypaint and a hairdo resembling SHODAN in the SHODAN Again JPEG. Well, I'm not sure what to think about it. But perhaps one of those hackers portrayed in the SS1 manual would be disgusted by a flesh person impersonating a nearly perfect AI 8-).

I checked the magazine's hompage this early afternoon, but they haven't changed the older version (Diablo2 warrior girl) yet. Just a matter of short time I suppose. So here is the URL:

www.pcaction.de

Will wonders never cease? Oh well, I guess that means that SS2 shall be a huge hit in Germany.... : )





    Sunday - 5.16.1999
    Comments on an Earlier Post - 10:30pm EST - Dan
Our friends over at VoodooExtreme followed up on some of the info we picked up from a source at E3, with info straight from the SS2 dev team.
[The game is DONE-- it is now just starting testing, which will take a couple of months.]

Nope. The game is very close to done though. We are just putting in some final artwork and effects, tuning the gameplay, and fixing bugs. Also itís already been in testing for quite a while now (a few months).

[The producer exclusively used the "psionic enhancer" piece of equipment when he was playing as a weapon... in other words, he used psionics instead of guns. What that means to you and me is that psionics ARE more than just a gimmick!]

Your going to love this- EA is forbidding the use of the conventional weapons in the game demo during E3. Their panties are in a bind over the Colorado incident, so donít want to play up the violence. This leaves us to only be able to demo the non-violent aspects of the game. It is possible to play the entire game "old school FPS" and not use a single Psi power (and vice versa). You really can play SS2 the way YOU want to.

[The interface is SLICK. I mean, REALLY slick... it makes so much sense that I wonder why other first-person RPG's don't use it. It just plain makes sense. Hard to explain though... basically, you're using mouselook and the crosshair is the activation point, you can press different buttons to activate whatever is at the crosshair in different ways. It combines the intuitive movement style of Quake with the interaction of Ultima Underworld. Very nice.]

I agree. I think the interface is great and shows all the thought that was put into it. Itís kind of like EverQuest, but a lot more refined and powerful.

[The intro is BADASS. So badass that I wish I didn't see it.... it might spoil my enjoyment of the full game. ]

I think it looks cool. This is one people will have to judge for themselves.

Thanks for the info, Billy! About the interface - I've heard it compared to the Daggerfall interface as well, but I think the obvious choice that most people are missing is its similarity to the Underworld and X-com interfaces!



    System Shock 2 Preview - In German! - 6:10pm EST - Dan
I know we have some german readers out there. Would you like to read a System Shock 2 preview in your own language? Drop on by TopOfGames.de and check it out!



    SS2 Info From a Private Source - One Man's Impressions - 6:00pm EST - Dan
This email was sent to my by the very helpful Steve Lowder. Earlier today he sent me a similar email talking about his Thief 2 Impressions.
I interviewed Ken Levine from Irrational Games about System Shock 2. The booth they were given by EA was small. They were running SS2 on one computer and when I was there you couldn't play around with it. The graphics and the features I saw were very impressive.

Some of the neat features were the ability to hack into computer systems and weapon systems with your skills and turn off defensive systems and do other things. Also with the skills of your character you can repair, modify, and improve your weapons. You can also query an item to get additional information about the items you have. To earn the skills to modify or upgrade your weapons you have to research or learns skills to do so. Some of the modifications you could do to your weapons were improve there fire rate and targeting. The questions I directly asked Ken were:

Q: Will SS2 support 3D surround yes?
A: Yes, with emphasis on the Creative Labs Sound Blaster Live using the environmental audio.

Q: What will be included in the box with SS2, will there be anything special like maps, trinkets etc,.?
A: I cant really say. That will be left up to EA and it is something we haven't discussed yet.

Q: There has been alot said about SS2 and Half-Life, what is going to separate SS2 from Half-Life?
A: With SS2 you build the story as you go, there is no set path. With Half-life that is not true, you have to follow it's story line.

One of the questions received from the TTLG's message boards about SS2 was about the transparent displays. I asked Ken about this and he showed me how some of the displays are still transparent but the main interface was not. From looking at the interface which I thought was very impressive, not being transparent did not take away from the game at all.

Over all I was very impressed with SS2. I have never played the first version of the game and this was the first time I saw the second. It is now a game I plan on buying or at least looking more deeply into. The graphics looked awesome and everything seemed to work and run smoothly. Add in the rpg factor of character skills and researching them with the ability to modify weapons and hack systems along with many other possibilities makes this look like a very promising game.

Thanks very much, Steve! It's always refreshing to hear that System Shock 2 looks awesome from a non press, non marketer, non developer, non fan!





    Saturday - 5.15.1999
    3DNews.net E3 Report - SS2 Impressions - 2:40pm EST - Dan
3DNews.net featured a short SS2 Impressions article. Here's what he had to say.
The game is DONE-- it is now just starting testing, which will take a couple of months.

The producer exclusively used the "psionic enhancer" piece of equipment when he was playing as a weapon... in other words, he used psionics instead of guns. What that means to you and me is that psionics ARE more than just a gimmick!

The interface is SLICK. I mean, REALLY slick... it makes so much sense that I wonder why other first-person RPG's don't use it. It just plain makes sense. Hard to explain though... basically, you're using mouselook and the crosshair is the activation point, you can press different buttons to activate whatever is at the crosshair in different ways. It combines the intuitive movement style of Quake with the interaction of Ultima Underworld. Very nice.

The intro is BADASS. So badass that I wish I didn't see it.... it might spoil my enjoyment of the full game.

All-in-all, System Shock 2 is everything we hoped it would be-- a true successor to System Shock. You can't get much more praise than that!

I love it when people are impressed with this game!



    Vote for SS2 - Most anticipated RPG - 2:30pm EST - Dan
I noticed that Gamespot has a poll up for the most anticipated role playing game. System Shock is in 2nd place, but is lagging far behind #1, Final Fantasy 8. Can SS2 beat this console behemoth? I say lets try for it. Vote!





    Friday - 5.14.1999
    How Many CDs Do We Need for Multiplayer? - 2:40am EST - Dan
The question was asked by Axel Haake in the System Shock 1 & 2 forum. Here is, once again, Boojum with the answer!
My understanding is one CD per player. I don't know if mixing English and German will be specifically supported, but I wouldn't be surprised if it worked. QA was using Roger Wilco for a while, and I believe the plan is to have support.
Looks like I'm gonna haveta buy me 4 copies!



    IGN and UGO with System Shock 2 Info! - 2:40am EST - Dan
The following report was nabbed from PC.IGN.com, and it gives away new info about psi powers!
From the glowing look in his eyes and the giddy tone in his voice, it was easy to tell Ken was extremely excited about the progress of System Shock 2. He started off the demo with a look at how psi-powers are going to work. Using an interface similar to a computer golf game, a sliding meter will shoot across your screen. If you hit your mouse button while the meter is in the 'sweet spot,' then your psi-power will be most effective. Stop the meter before that point and your psi-power will be weaker, stop it after the spot and you risk damaging yourself. Right now there are about 35 psi-powers in the game, but Ken said that the design team would possibly be adding more before the game ships.
The rest of the post is just babble, and talk about character generation. You can read it here.

This tasty bit was taken from UGO's E3.net. It's a very tongue-in-cheak post, that talks about mainly level design, among other things.

"Half Life was all about presentation," says Ken Levine, "It walked you through an interesting story and a great environment. But System Shock 2 is all about improvisation. We want to give the player a ton of tools and let him decide how to approach everything."

He demonstrates by showing me a panel that opens a door. The panel is covered by cameras that trigger automated turrets. He can shoot out the cameras and turrets, disable security on the level, or find another path around the door. But heís got something else in mind. He sets up a psionic barrier in front of the panel, ducks behind it, and starts hacking it while the turret shots bounce off the barrier. As with the first System Shock, a small puzzle diagram pops up. Levine boogers it up and sets off alarms everywhere.

Levine works at Irrational Games, the company thatís co-developing the game with Looking Glass. Heís not very good at System Shock 2. He keeps dying and having to reload. I must have seen the death sequence, in which the first person perspective tilts sickly to one side and slides to the floor, about a dozen times. When I play through System Shock 2 in the co-operative multiplayer mode, Levine canít be on my team.

System Shock 2 will use the Dark Engine that powered Thief, not to be confused with Activisionís Dark Side engine, which hasnít powered much of anything just yet. But for those naysayers (myself included) who were worried that System Shock 2 would take place in another sparsely detailed environment, this latest build of System Shock 2 is a nice surprise. The interior of the Von Braun, the first faster-than-light ship, looks sharp and convincing. Itís hardware only, so the developers have plenty of polygons to play with. Thereís new 16-bit color, colored lighting, and a great steam effect that recalls the ducts in Unrealís prison ship.

Unlike the first System Shock, there will be a number of different environments. The Von Braun has a hydroponics bay and several different decks. But itís also got a military destroyer riding piggyback, which will have a completely different interior design. The game opens with a training session on a space station orbiting Earth. The final level will be a climactic battle in cyberspace with SHODAN, the AI-gone-bad from the first game. But SHODAN isnít alone this time. Now she (he? it?) is somehow connected to ďThe ManyĒ, a huge mass of biomatter with a collective conscious. The Many spawns little worms that dig into their hosts and take over their minds. Just imagine Microsoft, but with worms. Part of the game will be set inside The Many.

The inventory interface resembles Diablo. As with X-Com, you have to research new weapons before you can use them. There are several character skills in four categories (basic, combat, psi, and technical) that you can upgrade by trading in cybernetic modules. Psi skills are like spells, protecting you from damage, replicating ammo, turning off alarms, pacifying aggressive enemies, levitating you, and getting you dates on Friday nights. Okay, I lied about the levitating. Weapons can be modified and upgraded. You collect Nanite Pods to make inventory items in replicators. The whole thing feels like it has a very tight internal logic.

Finally, I asked Levine to tell me about the end of the game. He gave it up for me. Although you will interact with neutral characters (not only through email and computer logs, as in the first System Shock, but also in person), your character has only one line, spoken at the end of the game. Levine spoke that one line for me, which is actually a single syllable, by wrinkling his nose and saying: ďNah.Ē Now I have to play through the game to figure out what the hell itís supposed to mean.

What a silly person. Oh well. If you want to read it over again (I posted the entire article), you can here. Expect more E3 SS2 info soon! Maybe now I can go to bed...





    Thursday - 5.13.1999
    SS2:/ Mutlimedia DataBank Has Been Reconstructed! - 10:40am EST - Dan
The two areas of this site that get the most criticism (read: one or two people emailed me once about it with suggestions) are the two that the most people visit- the Data.Node, and the Media Databank (SS2mmdb). As System Shock 2's release approaches, I decided it was time to do a total overhaul of both of them. The Data.Node's reconstruction will take quite a while - it's no small task. The new Media Databank, however, is ready to roll! I literally spent 7 hours yesterday working on this, starting from scratch, from start to finish. It includes not only all the changes that people asked for, but room to expand once Shock2 is on our hard-drives.

I hope you like it! Click here to view the new and Improved SS2mmdb!

(Note that due to file restructuring, most of the links to screenshots in news posts will be broken. May 11th is the only exception. Pardon the inconvenience)



    A Correction From Boojum Re: Mist - 10:40am EST - Dan
The ever-helpful Boojum dropped me another line, with another minor (or major, depending on how you look at it) correction regarding the screenshot Running in the Mist.
(I admit, I get the screenshots to print and hang at my other job at your site, rather than poking around at Looking Glass for them! )

Anyway, with respect to "running in the mist", that's actually a translucent window (you can see the frame in the lower left corner), rather than fog. But yes, that's a live human (at least at that moment...). There is mist, but it's particle-effect stuff rather than filling whole rooms.

I shall hesitate overspeculating the fact that there is a living human being in this shot - but it lends to suggest that SS2 is a bit more populated then SS1 was!



    SShock2.com Grand Re-Opening! - 10:30am EST - Dan
Welcome, hackers and taffers, to new domain of SShock2.com! We are finally back on our feet and off of TTLG's back! We will start off the day with the Press Release, which talked about SS2 at E3!
Looking Glass Studios Announces E3 Lineup

Situated in Electronic Arts' booth at E3, Looking Glass Studios will showcase three upcoming computer games. Flight Combat: Thunder Over Europe is a World War II air combat simulation in which players suit up as an RAF, USAAF or Luftwaffe pilot. People choose from a large selection of aircraft, ranging from single seat fighters to multi-stationed strategic bombers. Missions include dogfighting, strategic bombing, night fighting, naval assaults and air-to-ground combat. With authentic flight models, a new-sprung 3D rendering engine, multi-player support, intense AI opponents and a physics-driven damage system, Flight Combat: Thunder Over Europe is aiming to recreate the life and death air struggle over Europe in the 1940s.

In Flight Unlimited 3, pilots can choose from 10 different aircraft and soar above 10,000 square miles of photo-realistic mountains, waterways, city streets and monuments of the Seattle area. The dynamic environment includes interactive Air Traffic Control, other AI aircraft reacting to the player's movements, moving ground objects, detailed 3D objects, flight instruction and flight challenges. The realism is enhanced by an advanced weather system.

The evil artificial intelligence SHODAN returns in the sequel to the award-winning System Shock, one of the most critically acclaimed computer games of all time. The game features a science fiction action and role-playing game system with detailed character generation and growth, inventory and equipping, and several groups of special traits unique to each character. Filled with 16-bit color textures, colored lighting and variable translucency objects, System Shock 2 also introduces an easy-to-use interface that retains the depth of the original.

Nothing we didn't already know, but I posted it here for completeness. Pretty soon the E3 news will be pouring in, and SShock2.com will be on top of the matter, scouting for any SS2 scraps and tid-bits we can pick up!





    Tuesday - 5.11.1999
    Screenshot Downpour from Shock2.com! - 11:40pm EST - Dan
The Official System Shock 2 site has finally gotten its own domain name - Shock2.com. Hopefully we will get ours soon! Along with the move, they released a huge number of new screenshots! Here they all are!

On No! Not a Bug Beast!
Ew, ick, flies, I hate flies! Where is my can of Raid when I need it?

Wait, That's no Bug Beast!
It looks as of these flies are coming from that spore sackish looking things. Another feature of "The Many", no doubt.

Major Deja Vu (A Large Room)
It may be just me, but this looks strikingly familiar. It looks very similar to an area on Level 5 of Citadel. . .

This is Not C3-PO
It may be a protocol droid, but rather then whine, this one explodes when it gets near you.

Green Light!
If that green flash came from that robot, then it is much more then a simple Beaver Workbot. If it came from the gun, then this character is very good at modifying weapons!

A Warrior Bot?
It does indeed make sense that a similar frame could be used for multiple robots. This bot, shaped like a beaver bot, appears to be more of a combat droid.

That Creepy Midwife
A damsel in distress! What's a hero to do? Kill her, of course. And oh look, she's not as naked as she was back in the concept sketch!

More of the Midwife
Here is a closer look at that nasty cyber-witch. Yuck.

Dead Men on Green Deck
This deck with green makings on the walls, which we have seen many times, seems to be hydroponics.

Is This What I Think it is?
At first glance, I instantly thought this was a toilet & shower unit. Then, after reading the signs on the walls, I wasn't sure what to think.

This is a Blue Room
What a pretty blue room! My, it looks as if something blew up there.

Running in the Mist
This is a very cool shot. It's the first we've seen of real fog in SS2. Plus, is that a real live human running there?

You Are Here
The awesome thing about this shot is not the pretty room, but the very System Shock automap in the top corner!

The Lazer Rapier
Yes! Proof that the greatly loved Lazer Rapier has made a comeback! Slice up that nasty bot who makes the green flashes!

That's quite a load, is it not? One last thing, regarding an old screenshot, Once-Grunt 2. I mentioned that the screenshot looked odd, and I was right. According to MSG, of the SS2 design team, whoever took the shot did so with object lighting turned off, so, as you can see, the objects aren't affected by light or darkness. It's a bug with the way the screenshot was taken.





    Sunday - 5.09.1999
    System Shock 2 In-Game Music Has Been Released - 12:30pm EST - Dan
The trailer gave us a preview of what was to come as far as music, and now we get to experience it first hand. AVault's SS2 mp3s are here! Three of them: one from the trailer, and two news ones. I must say though, the music sounds more like crusader music then System Shock music, not that that's a bad thing, just different...

Nab Dez Hot Monkeys!





    Saturday - 5.08.1999
    System Shock 2 E3 Trailer Details - 10:30pm EST - Dan
The following news post contains spoilers for the new SS2 movie. If you have not seen it yet, I strongly recommend you do so before readying this post. It's 3 minutes, 17 Megs. Download it!

Let me start off by saying how pleased I was with this movie. It's hard to tell where to begin. I suppose I should start out by snuffing a complaint that has already arisen, by myself, for one. It regards the character animation. Thief's character animation was very smooth and fluid, almost perfect. However the animation we saw in this movie was rather stiff and jerky, more like Half-Life's animation. Here's a letter from Ken Levine describing what we are seeing wrong.

I can promise you that the jerkiness you saw was due to the video.

We use a motion capture system in System Shock 2. The notion of keyframes and interpolation is not particularily relevant, as we do little or no hand animation. . . . Our motion capture system, as it did in Thief, creates a practically unlimited number of frames of animation. However, as with any game, low end machines will show some jerkiness.. Use Thief as a reference to see how the animation system looks, its quite similar to that of Shock 2's.

I would also surmise that the jerky animation was due to the fact that the movie was undoubtedly made a bit of time ago, and the animation system was not yet polished.

A few other things - the odd wording which lead us to belive that a 'beast' linked the two ships can be tossed out. As we see in the movie, it is a perfectly mechanical and non-organic docking mech. There looks like there will be an automap, viewable in the same way as it was in SS1. The system voice in SS2 sounds more like C3-PO then Proff Steven Hawkings (sp?). Radiation danger areas seem to work the same way, but with a nice little bar display rather then just a number indicator. The Once-Grunts are much faster then Humanoid Mutants. Crates work the same way, but can carry much more. We got to see a cool ol' camera bash via a wrench. It looks like the player is using a power-up station to increase his/her skills. It looks complex enough for us. The player does some type of psyonic power to that stationary droid. No idea what. That potted plant looks really nice.... : )

Other then that, I can't say we learned much new. We already knew the thing was going to look awesome!



    System Shock 2 Move is Out! - 12:40pm EST - Dan
It's here! 3 minutes, 17 Megs. Download it!



    System Shock 2 Development - An Article by Ken Levine - 10:50am EST - Dan
Never rains but it pours, eh? While we are all anxiously awaiting the next crop of goodies from AVault, I noticed that Next-Generation has yet another SS2 article up! However this time, it's not a preview, it's an article written by Ken Levine describing E3 preparations and the System Shock 2 Development process.
Fortunately, for System Shock 2, we have a team that lives and breathes the game. They're craftsman. Even worse, they're craftsman with ownership. People love their levels. They pet them before they go to bed. They fight for more art assets. They beg me to write more logs and emails to make them cooler. They rush up wide eyed with incredible ideas to which I tell them "there's no time" and they tell me, "well, I've been here for two days solid and I've already done it."
Reading things like that make me just know that SS2 will knock our socks off! But if that impressed you, you haven't seen nothing yet. Unlike the last crop of AVault shots, these new ones will blow you away!

Biological Infestation
System Shock 1 had biological infestation, but it was no where near this level of infestation!

Another Messy Room
Hey, they can't all be gems. But look out the windows, ewww, more bioinfest.

Up to your Armpits in Ooze
I only have one things to say. Holy Fat Momma!

Kill it Kill it Kill IT!
Same place as above, with a bit of action involved.... : )

Babies must sleep, babies must rest . . .
The awesome thing about this shot is not the 800x600 view of a corpse, but the email message in your MFD.

It's Dromed!
Look! It's Dromed, the System Shock 2 editor! Scope out that overhead map of what looks like an office complex.

So what have we just seen? I'm looks we have finally been informally introduced to "The Many". It seems they play a much larger role in this game then I thought!





    Thursday - 5.07.1999
    Electronic Arts' E3 Site is Up. - 5:10pm EST - Dan
I'm not totally sure how relevant this will be to us, but the EA E3 site is up. The amount of SS2 coverage we will be seeing here is unknown, however if there is any, you can bet that you will also see it here. In that case, there really is not point for you to worry about that site then, is there?



    Where to be During E3 - 4:45pm EST - Dan
The second batch of System Shock 2 screenshots from AVault is here, and while not a total disapointment, is not as good as we all had hoped.

Once-Grunt 2
I know, it's not a very creative title, but what else should I call it? This shot looks odd to me for some reason.

Once-Grunt and Crates
This shot looks remarkably similar to another shot that we already have.

Once-Grunt and Crates Again
Ditto

Beaver and Grunt
Oh look, a Beaver Bot and a Once-Grunt. I want to shoot them and make them die now!

Come Saturday, we will have something to really enjoy.



    Second Batch of Screenshots from AVault - 4:45pm EST - Dan
The second batch of System Shock 2 screenshots from AVault is here, and while not a total disapointment, is not as good as we all had hoped.

Once-Grunt 2
I know, it's not a very creative title, but what else should I call it? This shot looks odd to me for some reason.

Once-Grunt and Crates
This shot looks remarkably similar to another shot that we already have.

Once-Grunt and Crates Again
Ditto

Beaver and Grunt
Oh look, a Beaver Bot and a Once-Grunt. I want to shoot them and make them die now!

Come Saturday, we will have something to really enjoy.



    Ken Levine & System Shock 2 at E3 - 2:00pm EST - Dan
Here is a cut-&-paste from The Vault Network concerning Ken Levine's plans for E3 this year.
I plan to spend a lot of time showing and talking about System Shock.

I will be personally at the Electronic Arts System Shock 2 booth for a fair amount of time and look forward to meeting all the people who've been wanting to get their hands on Shock 2 for the last month. In addition, I'll be talking to press, eating bad food and trying to sneak away for a few minutes to see what's new.

I'm psyched to take a look at Oni, whatever the Valve guys are up to, the Microprose/Hasbro stuff, Bullfrog stuff and anything Sid, Brian and the Firaxis guys are up to.

If you're lucky enough to be going to E3, be sure to say "hi" to Ken & Crew for us!



    Some Changes to this Site - 11:30am EST - Dan
I should take a brief moment to mention a few scant changes to this site. It is now called SShock2.com, and will be moving to its new domain soon. The Data.Node has a new maintainer, 'Larris, the Magpie', who shall be getting up a vast new update to that page hopefully before then end of the month.



    The Wait is Over - SS2 Media Explosion! - 10:40am EST - Dan
Here it is, taffers and hackers, the best news this site has had in weeks!
Electronic Arts sent these screenshots of its forthcoming 3D science fiction role-playing game, System Shock 2. The game is being co-developed by Looking Glass Studios and Irrational Games, a development studio comprised of members of the original System Shock development team. It utilizes an enhanced version of Looking Glass Studios' proprietary Dark Engine, first used in Thief: The Dark Project, to create an immersive role-playing world rendered in 16-bit color with colored and dynamic lighting models. The game will also contain advanced role-playing features, including character generation and growth, an elegant inventory system, a compelling science fiction world to explore and a unique multiplayer mode. The Adrenaline Vault will be premiering an in-game movie Saturday, MP3s featuring game music on Sunday and an additional set of 15 screenshots later today.
I dashed over there immediately. The vast majority of the shots are lower res versions of the screenshots we already have. However there are a few new screenshots to share with you today.

Science Station?
The detail on this piece of equipment is just beautiful.

Upset Midwife
Oh this is cool! It looks like the player destroyed the station above, and a Cyborg Midwife (female cyborgs that are supposed to have a very creepy nature), got upset and ran to investigate. This is not a combat cyborg, so naturally 'she' is more interested in assessing the damage then attacking you. But watch out, reinforcements are not far behind! All of this is, of course, totally conjectural.

Once-Grunt
Yet another image of the player doing battle with a Once-Grunt, the SS2 equivalent of the Humanoid mutant.

The entire collection of AVault shots can be seen here. For a complete collection of all System Shock 2 screenshots, go to this site's media databank. Stay tuned to this site for coverage of this media explosion!





    Thursday - 5.06.1999
    Boojum Speaks - Re: Research and Internal Organs - 01:00am EST - Dan
Boojum, a mysterious Looking Glass Studios developer, who can also be referred to as "Laura Baldwin", gave out some information dealing with an older screenshot. One is interesting, and one isn't really.
The text on the "what is this ugly spud" research screen starts out "This is a pulpy, bifurcated organ..." (though I really do need to change the darned thing because it's not terribly bifurcated). That is, the thing in question is an internal organ you've picked up and are researching, and it's kind of pulpy. :)
That is just so.... bazaar. Truly, I've never heard anything described as being 'pulpy'. Then again, nor have I seen anything that is 'bifurcated' up close. But wait, she did say that is really wasn't too bifurcated at all! Oh well.
Currently, the way research works is that you may only be researching one item at a time. Research is performed by your headware, as you put it, and takes both time and ingredients. If you want to research something new, either because it's more important-looking or because you don't have the requisite ingredient at that time, then you suspend the research and start something else. Suspended research doesn't lose the progress that's been made.
That's slightly more useful to us! Thanks for the inside info, Boojum! And yes, I am very tired. Goodnight.