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Things And Stuff: Thursday News Roundup

(Updated throughout the day.) GTA: San Andreas shot proves game was at E3 (in a sense), GTA3's Liberty City ported to PC Vice City, Far Cry due a patch and mod kit soon, UT2004 speech/facial tools released, Demon Stone to appear on Xbox as well as PS2.

Rockstar Games has released a screenshot of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas - in response to claims that the game was the most disappointing absentee at the recent Electronic Entertainment Expo, for which Rockstar chose to give American magazine Game Informer an exclusive preview instead of demonstrating it to the masses. The shot, which is sort of a joke, features the game's hero Carl Johnson perched on a bicycle in front of a certain Convention Centre.

In much, much more interesting Grand Theft Auto related news, a group of enterprising young mod-smiths have found a way to get Liberty City (playground of Grand Theft Auto III) up and running in the PC version of GTA: Vice City, allowing fans to take advantage of the latter's various improvements in a familiar setting. Helicopters and motorbikes are the most obvious additions, but improvements range from the vehicle physics and access to interiors used in the original game's cut-scenes, to more technical alterations like an advanced particle system, transparent water effects, and rooftops with associated collision files so we can actually land on them. "GTA: Liberty City" is available here.

Far Cry will be updated to version 1.2 during the first half of June, according to an update on the game's official website, with the official modification SDK appearing in the middle of next month. The website update also points to dedicated Windows and Linux server releases in late June, so it seems that if you're hoping to catch the rays in CryTek's idyllic jungle FPS, June is very much the month to do it...

Meanwhile, another outstanding FPS developer, Epic Games, has announced the release of the Impersonator speech and facial animation pack for Unreal Tournament 2004, allowing mod authors to create realistic and emotive talking characters using tech licensed from OC3 Entertainment. "Impersonator support is integrated directly into UnrealEd once UT2004 is patched to version 3204," the company tells us, and tools, samples and documentation for the Impersonator pack can be downloaded direct from Epic here.

Following the announcement earlier this week that Patrick Stewart, Michael Clarke Duncan and R.A. Salvatore would be bolstering its acting and writing line-ups, Atari has today revealed the previously PS2-only fantasy slasher Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone will also appear on Xbox when it launches this autumn. Both PS2 and Xbox versions are in development at Stormfront Studios, the acclaimed creator of EA's The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers title.

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Tom Bramwell

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Tom worked at Eurogamer from early 2000 to late 2014, including seven years as Editor-in-Chief.

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