Building on the surreal style of Myst and Riven, Myst III : Exile features five entirely new ages for players to explore and hours of new mysteries to uncover.

The story introduces a new villain, played by Academy Award nominee Brad Dourif (One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest) who comes from an Age that was destroyed by Sirrus and Achenar, Atrus and Catherine's two sons. Seeking revenge against the family for this crime, he has turned Atrus' worlds into a staging ground for vengeance. How better to destroy a hated adversary, he believes, that to use his own creations against him?

Only by exploring the worlds and navigating their puzzles will the player learn the truth about the villain and confront this vengeful adversary successfully.

Developed by Presto Studios in San Diego, USA, Myst III: Exile features hours of new mysteries to uncover. The use of new technologies and an innovative navigation system will bring the Myst universe even more vividly to life for players.

KEY FEATURES

-A rich and compelling story extends the Myst mythology by introducing a new character, new plot, and new worlds into the game. The choices that the player makes in the game will drive the story onwards.

-Bringing the pivotal new character to life is Academy Award nominee Brad Dourif, whose impressive acting portfolio includes One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest, Murder in the First, and the forthcoming Lord of the Rings.

-The game introduces 5 fantastic Ages for players to discover and explore, each possessing a distinct theme and atmosphere. Tomahna is like a flowering oasis at the desert edge. J'Nanin is composed of towering granite cliffs. Voltaic is a dusty, desolate place, whilst the mechanical wonderland that is Amateria is juxtaposed by Edanna—a living organic paradise of different flora and faunas.

-Players will find themselves seduced by and fully immersed in these fascinating worlds, thanks to the game's revolutionary 360-degree free-look movement system. This system allows players to stand in a location and look around at any point in the beautiful, pre-rendered worlds, even while animations and movies are playing.

-An original orchestral soundtrack, which draws on experimental, philharmonic, and film scores for inspiration, accompanies you throughout your journey to different locations and parts of the story.

Myst III: Exile is guaranteed to appeal to all. The vivid worlds are beautifully pre-rendered and—thanks to Presto's revolutionary propriety engine, which makes full use of both pre-rendered backgrounds and real-time 3D technology—seamlessly blended together in real-time as players look around. The locations and story are fascinating but never alienating, and considerable time was spent thinking through the different directions of the game, so that no matter what order puzzles are solved, the game can always progress.

System Requirements for MYST III: Exile

IBM PC Compatibles:
233 MHz Pentium II or 300 MHz K6-2 or faster
Windows 95/98/ME
64 MB RAM
250 MB Available Hard Disk Space
4X CD-ROM drive or faster
640x480 display
3D Acceleration Optional
Required 8MB Video Card
Supporting 32-bit color
DirectX 8 compatible Sound Video Cards

(While it is possible to run Myst III: Exile on Windows NT or 2000, it is not recommended. Problems may result from doing so, and Ubi Soft will not be able to offer you technical support if you are using Windows NT or 2000.)

MACINTOSH PowerPC or Compatibles:
233 MHz G3 Processor or faster
Mac OS 8.1 to 9.1
(Not OS X compatible, unless you download and install patch version 1.22)
64 MB RAM
250 MB Available Hard Disk Space
4X CD-ROM drive or faster
640x480 display
3D Acceleration Optional
6MB Video Card Required
Millions of colors supported
QuickTime 5 Required

MYST III: Exile: The CD version and CDROM Collectors version were released May 7th, 2001, on 4 CD's.

Source: Myst3 Website, Press area

ALL AN ARTIST NEEDS IS A PENCIL, A SHEET OF PAPER, AND A DREAM, RIGHT?

Far from being limited to pencil and paper, Presto's artists are equipped with the absolute latest in computer hardware and software. Presto is building Myst III: Exile using Discreet's 3D Studio Max™, a powerful 3D modeling tool frequently used in games and movies. 3D Studio Max is a flexible tool that allows Presto to assemble all the components in a scene, including modeling, texturing, lighting, and animation, in one tool. They can easily return to a particular scene or animation to change a model or texture without having to open several programs to get the job done.

Since 3D Studio Max is an industry standard, there are numerous plug-ins available, ranging from simple workflow improvements to special effects like ocean water and fire. Presto can easily draw from the work of the professional artists who created these plug-ins instead of having to reinvent the wheel all the time. Because of 3D Studio Max's flexibility, they can also write their own tools for specialized tasks, such as exporting artwork to the game engine.

Creating an age for Myst III: Exile involves several steps. First, designers invent what will appear in each world and what it will look like. The world is laid out on paper, and then the artists create concept art that details every element of the world. 3D artists model the world in 3D Studio Max according to the specifications of the hand-drawn concept art. Second, the textures for the models are created by scanning or taking digital photos of real life materials, then enhancing or altering the digital images with Adobe Photoshop™. Third, the textures are mapped to objects in the 3D world. Finally, lighting is applied to each scene, and animations are defined and rendered in 3D Studio Max.

So what kinds of machines are Presto's artists running these programs on? Their technology is far more advanced than pencils and paper. Each artist at Presto commands an Intel Pentium III 400 with 512 megabytes of RAM and the latest video cards. Their animation and render servers (the machines that actually render the final images) are Dual Pentium III 733 machines with 1 gigabyte (1000 megabytes!) of RAM. All that power is pushed to the limit rendering Myst III: Exile's beautiful and complicated worlds.

MOVIES, PROGRAMMING, AND SOUND, OH MY!

In order to play movies and sound within Myst III: Exile, Presto has licensed BINK and the Miles Sound System from RadGameTools. BINK is a fantastic movie compressor and playback tool that provides seamless animations in their panoramic nodes. Miles Sound System provides a host of features for multichannel sound on the PC. Presto is working with the makers of BINK and Miles Sound System to make sure that both tools work perfectly in Myst III: Exile.

To composite the live action footage (filmed in July) into the rest of the game, Presto is using Apple's Final Cut and Combustion on the Macintosh. Presto also used Final Cut to edit together the Myst III trailer that is available on this website.

However, Presto employs programmers as well as artists, and several of them are working on Myst III. All the game logic is being programmed on a Macintosh Powerbook, which might make Myst III the first game entirely written on a portable computer! The game logic is the programming that describes how the world works, such as where the buttons are, what they do when they're pressed, and what movies to play at what time.

The programmer is not the only Mac user at Presto. Many people at Presto use Macs as their primary systems for game design including the Writer, Assistant Producer, Producer, and Executive Producer.

In short, Presto uses a variety of tools for a variety of tasks. Their ultimate goal is to match each task with the tool that suits that task best. They use PCs, Macs, and other systems interchangeably, drawing on the strengths of each to accomplish their goals.

Source: Myst3 Website, Inside Look 2