Marathon lives

aleph one iconThe first-person shooter Marathon first came out in 1994, back in the dark days of the Mac when there were precious few games being developed for our beloved, but beleaguered, operating system.

Bungie — the game’s creators — was treated almost like a hero for having faith in the Mac. People snapped up the Marathon trilogy and made it a minor hit.

I was reminded of Marathon when one of the members of thriftmac headquarters came home raving about Halo. This game was at one time presumed to be a sequel to Marathon, but instead Bungie disappointed us by going to work for Microsoft and the Xbox.

It all seems like ancient history, but Marathon lives on thanks to the tireless efforts of fans — and thanks to Bungie for making the code open source. A special program called Aleph One has been created that allows the game to run on OS X with smoother graphics and a larger screen resolution. Aside from this, completely new textures have been created to make the games look even better. Major conversion scenarios have come along, and some are still being updated with artistic restorations.

Marathon was probably one of the best games ever made for the Mac. If you haven’t tried it, you should. If you haven’t played it lately, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at what’s new. Start here.


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