Friday, March 30, 2007

Harder Than It Should Be

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Open Football



I'm really excited this morning. Go on, ask me why! Well, since you asked :-) it's because I came across a new football game project... Open Football. Ok, it's only available from SVN, the game is far from complete, but look at the screenshot. It looks full of potential! Project description:



"Open Football aims to become the new best multiplatform soccer game that everyone can enjoy. Providing arcade style playing while still mantaining the manager side of the game ensures hours of high quality, nail bitting fun."


I'm giddy just imagining it. I hope they set up some more infrastructure (think nicer phpBB forums, mailing lists etc) so people can get involved. As all you budding developers [should] know, infrastructure fosters communities. No infrastructure, no community! And the SF.net forums are a pile of stinking <censored> so don't rely on those. ;-)



So, yeah, I want to install Freeciv 2.1beta3 on my Linux laptop. What's this? I have to compile it myself? And people wonder why desktop-Linux take-up is so slow? I mean, for the love of Mary, I'm using Ubuntu... the most popular distro... yet I have to trawl forums looking for .debs of the latest release of one of the most popular Linux games, finding only broken links and "email me for it" posts. Why don't people embrace solutions like Autopackage? This is a topic I might have a big whine about someday here on FG.



Whilst searching, I did come across GetDeb. This is a nice idea, a community run portal for uploading unofficial packages for Ubuntu. There's quite a few games listed. (It amuses me that the 'games' category id is 1.) I think Autopackage needs something similar in order to bolster it's popularity. The way they list their packages is, well, rubbish.



Ok I ran out of things to talk about.



Music tip:

Jesse Garcia - Work This Pussy



*childish chuckles*

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Release Early, Release Often

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Wormux<



I had a go at Wormux last night. It's a Worms clone, closest to Worms II. I'm impressed, this is a well done game although it lacks is AI. Once it has AI, it will be one of those awesome games that everybody should have (like Frozen Bubble).



There was a game looking for testers... I forgot what it was though. :-(



Another game that needs a bit of help testing new developments is Battle for Antargis. Development seemed to have stopped earlier in the year but fortunately it has restarted. A bit of testing and ironing out of any major issues and they'll make another release, so go help out if you have time.



Battle for Antargis



Battle for Antargis is one of the more original FLOSS games (inspired by Powermonger which older readers might remember), so it would be nice to see it progress further.



Now that FreeTrain in English development has begun, I might make another project to resurrect another FLOSS game. At the moment I'm thinking either Emilia Pinball or Eat the Whistle. Both are playable games, the former lacks good pinball tables and the latter needs a bit of debugging to run more reliably plus it's graphics are a little too retro. Any preferences? Please comment - feel free to suggest other games that you think need attention too.



I think I finally talked the Vega Strike people into making another release after years without an update. The development has always been active but just lacks focus. The new release should be an awesome game although may be a little rough around the edges (read: have a few bugs). In the mean time, people continue to produce jaw-dropping media for the game.



Not quite FLOSS, but the rather cool freeware transport sim Simutrans is close to another stable release. It's development has been impressively steady and the latest version is much improved over the current stable version.

In more personal news, I started hacking together a Football Management game, entitled Soccer Boss (in homage to the ancient Spectrum game Soccer Boss). At the moment it's just a UI sandbox. When it's useful, I'll comment some more.



Music tip:

68 Beats - Replay The Night (John Dalhback mix)

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Strawberries & Cream

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I had these grand plans for today, but instead I slept through two alarms and got to work 2 hours late, and forgot what my plans were. *groan*



Eat the Whistle



ActionCube



Anyhow, onto relevant matters, that previously-imminent VDrift release is now official. Go get it, honestly it is a good experience. And it looks great too. :-)



I played Eat the Whistle for the first time yesterday. Any attempts to run it on Linux had failed even though it has been ported, but I thought I'd have a crack on my Windows laptop and (despite a few graphical glitches) it worked! It's good fun although whenever the other team had the ball I struggled to locate the player I was in control of. However in terms of gameplay feel, it's quite nice to play and a little reminiscent of Sensible Soccer although more dynamic but not quite as sharp.



Not sure if I've mentioned this before, so I'll mention it now... ActionCube looks fun. I might have a bash at it later in the week. Think Counter Strike meets Cube. They are using the Cube engine instead of the Sauerbraten engine (aka Cube2) because, when the project started, Sauer was in constant flux (and still isn't declared to be stable).



Um... I had other things to mention but I'm out of time. Go play Wesnoth or something. ;-)



Music tip:

Filthy Rich - Shake it (Steve Lawler mix)

Monday, March 26, 2007

Go With The Flow

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Firstly a quick update on FreeTrain. The main game has now been translated, so should compile and run on Windows. At the moment, though, there are a few things to be addressed before it can be officially released and also it probably needs porting to SDL to run on Linux as - although Mono is implementing WinForms - it makes a few DirectX calls. That and I'm too lame (in combination with VS2005) to even make it compile on Windows.



FlowFlowMania, a Pipe Mania clone, showed up on Freshmeat today. Sadly there's only 2 playable levels and graphics for a resolution of 320x240 but it's early days yet so hopefully development will continue. I loved Pipe Mania when it came out on my ZX48+.



Since I was commenting on FLOSS platform games (or lack of) the other day, "Steve" brought to my attention his game - Danger Man. I gotta say, although it's early days for this game (don't expect much), it was a fun to play for a few minutes. It's only v0.1 and there's no real animation but the essential gameplay elements are there. Danger Man reminded me a bit of Abuse [SDL] (Freshmeat link due to homepage not working) with the mouse/keyboard combination, although it has a long way to go before it reaches a similar level of polish.



SuperTux


Continuing the platformer theme, I played SuperTux 0.3.0 for the first time yesterday. It felt sluggish and generally not-as-fun (on my 1Ghz laptop) compared to SuperTux 0.2.0. Maybe I'm just getting old or something? It is labelled a "preview" release so I also had a look at their progress towards a full Milestone 2 release (v0.4.0 I presume) and noted a complaint about a penguin that can't swim. Does anybody else see an opportunity for a Mario meets Ecco the Dolphin clone? Now that would be something special. :-)



Of course to do that well, you might want 3D characters instead of 2D sprites. Perhaps an adaption of the Windstille engine? I'm an idea-a-minute at the moment!



I love Fish Fillets. If you haven't played it, go to that link IMMEDIATELY. I like it that much, that I'm going to mention it's commercial follow up - Fish Fillets II. The graphics are, as usual, much improved. Anyway, I mention it only to see if people can bug Altar Games to either make a Linux port or perhaps GPL the engine so people can do it themselves aka Fish Fillets NG.



There's a rumour that UFO:AI 2.1 will get released before the end of the month. They got bored backporting changes from SVN trunk to the 2.0 branch so skipped an official 2.0 release altogether (after 6 RCs). I've no complaints with that - at the end of the day open source developers have limitted time. If something is actually detracting from development then sometimes it is better to forget about it. At the end of the day players want the latest, greatest stuff so generally will prefer a quick 2.1 release to a 2.0 release that delays v2.1 of the game. Besides, the developers can just argue that 2.0 was just a preview of 2.1 anyway! ;-)



Music tip:

Conamore - I've Got This Feeling (Ben Macklin Mix)

Friday, March 23, 2007

Oh My Word

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I didn't have an opportunity to sleep last night so inaccuracy, incompleteness, general rubbishness, etc, to be expected. ;-)



FG has come a long way since it started. I got sortable tables working yesterday for the main list so next step is to fill out the list properly and create the other lists. More tweaking is required on the template, but I think I'm in a position to finish off the upgrade next week. Not today.



In case you hadn't guessed I'm a little light on subject matter today.



TecnoballZ



TecnoballZ is a breakout game with an anime feel. The graphics have a nice oldskool feel to them, the sound is entertaining, and importantly the game evolves very quickly. Too many breakout games leave you waiting for ages to nail the last few bricks - but with weapons and multi-ball and all kinds of enhancements that quickly build up you never seem to suffer that with TecnoballZ. It's fun for a few minutes. :-)



There's stuff happening over with Windstille, a platform game full of potential. There's a really old gameplay video, and lots of graphics coming out of the woodwork. I hope there'll be a playable release soon because it's just the type of open source game that is missing - a nice looking platformer that plays like Turrican. If you don't know what I'm talking about then check out these freeware Turrican remakes, notably T2002, T4_funeral from the download page - Windows only. :-(



That's enough. My head hurts. Music tip:

Rivera & Padilla - Sick



Oh, the irony. :-)

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Egoboo vs FreeTrain vs VDrift

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Egoboo 2.3.6 is released! This is a major development in what was a dead game. Egoboo used to be a darling of open source gaming, so I'm hopeful it will rise like a phoenix and restore it's reputation.



Somebody has joined the FreeTrain localization effort! Daniel Markstedt, who also contributes to FreeCiv under the handles dmarks/hima, has started translating the game into English and posting patches to the mailing list (soon to be in SVN).



The VDrift team are gearing up for a release. I downloaded the latest test autopackage and, I must say, I was impressed. Aside from a clunky menu, this felt like playing a commercial racing game. Nice graphics, nice car handling, nice tracks. It took me a while to work out how to get started [you need to press 'w' to shift up a gear to start a race, even with autoshift enabled] but it was a lot of fun after that. :-)



I believe this will be a landmark release for VDrift that will see it rise to the challenge of being a viable alternative to commercial racing titles by attracting a lot of users and subsequently contributors. Ok, ok, the crystal ball is going back under the table.



Penumbra

One game I'd forgotten about, although I could have sworn blind I mentioned it on Free Gamer, is freeware horror FPS Penumbra. Currently only a tech demo (circa 2006) is available but it looks quite cool and innovative. Although I was more interested in the Frictional Games blog than the game itself - they talk about quite a few interesting game development problems such as simple fog being obstructed by shaders.



Speaking of game development stuff... devmaster.net is a hub of activity where developers can bump heads together in an attempt to, er, develop. They mention lots of game engine developments and stuff like that, some Free, some free, and some probably not free. Still it's all interesting if you are into that kind of thing.



Music tip:

Bliss N Script - Honey Child (Beatmasters mix)

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Slowly Does It

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Ok, I made a few minor improvements... it'll take a while to get this right. My advice; do not hold your breath. You'll die! :'(



Shall I be on-topic for a change with a few game mentions? Ok.



I'll start with Those Funny Funguloids! This 3D "mushroom collecting" game looks gorgeous, sounds lovely, is open source, is simple and fun, but is currently Windows-only. :-( Please port it to Linux, somebody! All the libraries it uses (OGRE, Lua, FMod Ex) work on Linux, so it should not only be feasible but quite easy.



A game that does run on Linux, though, is Widelands. And they just released their latest version of the game. If you remember and like Settlers II then you'll love this. It still feels a little rough, mostly to do with the slightly unintuitive UI and lack of tutorials, but it is definitely getting there.



Music tip:

TV Rock feat. Seany B - Flaunt It (Dirty South mix)



Ok, the rest is diatribe about FG & Blogger so if you don't want to know then don't read on. But you are still reading? Don't blame me. Stop reading!



I had to turn off automatic line breaks. That means going through all 80-something previous posts and manually adding <p> and <br/> tags. Happy happy joy joy! Next task is getting the sortable table to work with the main list. A few more tricks are required, but I'm hopeful it will work eventually - providing a giant sortable list of Free games.



Of course a big list is unwieldy. After I have refined it there will be other lists sprouting up, so don't worry, the format will reflect (to a degree) the nice organised lists that were there once before. :-)



Only Free Software will be in the main lists, although there will be a special page for notable freeware titles. Anyway, once complete, it will all be much more manageable *cheer* and useful *cheer* and generate more hits for when I reinstate Google ads *charlie cheers*.

Roadbumps...

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Ok I had a bad weekend and FG dropped down the priority list something rotten. Just when I needed spare time I had it all robbed by some annoying RL incidents. Normal service will resume probably next week now. Sorry! :-(



The games list is available in a raw raw format here:

http://freegamer.blogspot.com/2001/01/free-games-list.html



Btw if anybody knows why there is a huge gap in that page, tell me... it'll save me a few hours working out why.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Imminent Redesign

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[UPDATE]
Doing this redesign meant I had to upgrade the blogger template. As I feared I could not just go for the redesign behind-the-scenes. I had to upgrade the template to get the new blogger structure stuff. So no games list for a bit but I have backups so it'll be back online ASAP. Thanks for your patience. Complaints can be sent to this_is_free@be_happy.com and will not get responded too! ;-)
[/UPDATE]



Ok I'm finally taking the plunge. I have created new graphics (some of which are really cool, even if I say so myself), planned a new layout, and now the only remaining (and biggest) task is to migrate the games list (which you currently see on every page) into it's own page. I'm going to be pressing ahead with the template redesign today and putting up a bunch of new pages. Please bear with me whilst I mess up your RSS readers and generally create havoc. >:-)



Back to the important stuff... FREE GAMES!



VDrift



A VDrift release is imminent although probably won't happen this weekend. However, somebody also added a map (although it won't make it into this version), so as you can see from this screenshot the game is starting to look really polished. The next release adds so many new features (AI, different frictions, more cars & tracks, etc) so should stir up quite a bit of fuss.



Ultima Online was one of the original MMORPGs. It had massive popularity in it's time and dedicated members have made open source servers (e.g. SunUO, Wolfpack) and clients for the game. One of the more spectacular clients is Iris, with glorious 3D graphics. And since there are open source servers too, you do not actually need to own the game to play it. I was reading that you can download the official client, which comes with 15 days of free play. However, that 15 days only covers the official servers. You can play on free shards (such as here and here) with the official client without ever having it expire. I do not know if you need to install the official client to run an open source client like Iris. The next major version of Iris - aka Iris2 - is due this month.



Another free[ware] MMORPG is Regnum Online. Since I don't care about freeware MMORPGs nor have a decent 3D card, I'm not going to say any more on this one - check it out if you are interested in these things. It does look purty.



Music tip:

The Freaks - The Creeps (Vandalism remix)

[possibly labelled 'unreleased mix']



Seriously, that track is mint. :-)

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Can You Say Revival

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The Widelands team put out a release candidate for their next release, Widelands build10, of their Settlers II inspired game. Check it out!



Egoboo



Now who remembers Egoboo? Or the continuation effort that fizzled out? You know, the cutesy 3D roguelike where your characters waddled around? Well, there's a new place to go for Egoboo development. Several individual efforts have been released and now those efforts are being combined. The most notable ones are Egoboo 2.2.4 and Egoboo++. Hopefully we will see a new release in very near future. :-)



Pingus, the Lemmings clone with penguins, which seemed to have died a death at version 0.6.0 - which was a promising release as well with a nice playable tutorial island - has seen development restart. The original developer, and general FLOSS game hero, grumbel has been working on porting Pingus to SDL away from Clanlib. Whether this work will culminate in a release any time soon is another matter, but it is always nice to see forward motion.



netPanzer



The community for netPanzer, the formerly-commercial-now-GPL RTS, seem to be attempting to revive interest in the game. A new community site and resource site have cropped up and activity is high. Maybe development will restart?



Another project that is threatening to revive itself is Transport Empire. I have been very vocal in my criticism on the tt-forums of the bureaucratic approach that has strangled any intended development. One of the developers has had enough too and announced a simple cut-the-crap code-first approach to make the game happen, because discussions and design documents and fine-detail-planning had drowned any previous attempts.



The exciting freeware RTS project 0 A.D., in development for over 3 years so far, has a newish gameplay video up on their site. Check it out, it looks so cool. I wish they would release a demo but patience is a virtue and this game will be a scorcher when it is eventually released. Still, the lengthy development process is frustrating some fans, to which one of the developers made this rather poignant response which is worth a read if you [as a player] want to understand what free/Free game developers go through.



I'm going to have to stop there before this becomes an essay.



Music tip:

Precioso & Libex - Xperimental Scratch

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Gaming Goodness... Sorta

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I'll start with a couple of interesting freeware titles...



A while ago I came across (but forgot to mention) Hidden and Dangerous which has been released as abandonware by it's commercial developers Illusion Softworks. Linux users will need Wine but other than that it's another free gift to the gaming community.



Clonk



Another game to highlight is Clonk This freeware puzzle game seems full of potential. However I found the controls unintuitive and the tutorial rather unhelpful - I couldn't get past the second tutorial level! Still it was interesting and had a nice old school Amiga-ish feel to it. Again it's Windows only but should work with Wine.



I did a little article on IVAN the other day. It appears that IVAN development has stagnated but, no fear, the power of open source is here! The community created their own forum found at attnam.jconserv.net. There is an unofficial 0.60 version of IVAN as well as a fork called VLAD. Thanks to blogger user noIse for the tip on that one.



I had something else to rant about but I'll leave it until tomorrow just in case I have nothing else to talk about then. (It'll be a nice long rant!)



Music tip:

Moby - New York New York (Tocadisco NYPD Vocal)



Also it appears that the rss/atom feeds are only publishing old posts from Free Gamer. It should get fixed at some point before 2011. Thanks to Stefano Maffulli for pointing that out!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Utilizing The Community

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Before I get onto my main topic for today, I'll note that Kimboot 1.00 got released today. You swing a ball and chain around and bloodily annihilate stick men. Lots of violent fun without being too gross. :-)



I spoke to HellcatV today. For those who don't know, he's one of the original Vega Strike developers and pretty much the guy in charge of VS.



Vega Strike has not released an update for over 2 years. On the face of things that might be a sign of inactivity but that is the opposite of the truth. The community and developers have been continuously active and there is massive change between the last version (0.4.3) and the current version. I'm trying to push them to release an update.



"It's imperfect!" they lament. "It needs playtesting and bug fixing!" they decry. Commercial game companies have QA testers. Open source games have a community. Make a release, label it beta, and people will be happy to try it and report bugs. That's the nature of Free and Open Source Software.



I tried to talk HellcatV into labelling the next release 0.5.0beta instead of 0.4.4beta. There's been so much change in SVN and x.y.z is major.minor.bugfix and this is not a bugfix update. People are often far too conservative with version numbers (Torcs being another example). Let the version numbers reflect development activity! Not how perfect the game is. The utopia of a perfect 1.0 software release never, ever happens. It's better to aim at milestones and forget perfection as anything other than a distant goal. The only Free Software project I have seen pull off a decent versioning system with a lofty near-perfect 1.0 release goal is Inkscape and they keep it very, very simple - 0.x where x always increases 1 with every release - no point releases (well, ok, 0.x is a point release... but no 0.point.point releases) except for critical bug fixes. That works. The rest just make the software look less mature than it actually is and turn away fickle users and users are almost always fickle.



Perhaps I care about version numbers too much. :-)



Anyway... music tip:

Babylon Robot - Dop4m1n (Delicious & Errick mix)



By the way, almost all the music I (will) mention builds up. Don't listen for 5s then judge it, unless you want to miss out! ;-)

Monday, March 12, 2007

Slow Weekend?

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Well not much really to talk about. I get back online after the weekend to see nothing newsworthy so today I will just talk about a few FOSS things related to moi.



Although first, budding FOSS artists, check out this rather awesome animal print patterns pack that should boost your creative texturing efforts! It's CC share-a-like attribution licensed so basically no restrictions as long as you credit the creator. They are photoshop patterns :( but I'm sure there's a way to get them into el Gimp.



I imported FreeTrain CVS (from sourceforge.jp) into SVN (on sourceforge.net) and set up a basic website:

http://freetrain.sourceforge.net/



The next step is to get the thing compiling and have a dig around to see how deeply rooted all this Japanese stuff is, and to find somebody who actually knows Japanese. The game is written in C# and uses WinForms. However Mono recently got improved WinForms support so hopefully this will make FreeTrain run on Linux. :-) However that's the latest version of Mono and the Ubuntu Edgy version is the previous one... installing these things on Linux is a hassle and a half if something is not "officially" in a distro and probably why Linux adoption is as poor as it is. I guess I'll just have to take a gulp and get a little feisty.



If you fancy whipping together a few tracks into a compilation, I suggest you check out Mixxx. It's a great FOSS DJ application and cross platform.



That brings me to today's music tip, which is unbelievably good. I actually forgot where I was when listening to this the first time on my headphones and drifted into some kind of dream world:
Robbie Rivera - Floating Away (Deep Dish Dubfires Casaplex)



Is anybody checking out this music? Opinions are always welcome (as are suggestions).



Anyway, on a final note this is the 86th post to the Free Gamer blog. That's quite a lot - how time flies. Anyway I promise to completely overhaul this website before post #100 and, if I fail, I expect vitriol and abuse from disgruntled readers. ;-)



Seriously though, I need to move the list into a sortable table on it's own page because I just got fed up updating the nasty mess you see on the right. There's a bunch of games missing from it too. On top of that this theme sucks and there's no logo and generally too much crap on any 1 page. Anyway, enough that's ranting for now...

Friday, March 09, 2007

Another Populus Remake

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cspop



I wanted to mention it yesterday but held off... check out this post in the happy penguin forums effectively announcing a 3D RTS inspired by populus! Currently there is only an SVN repo and no official website but it looks like it's full of potential. I used to have high hopes for FreePop, a 2D populus clone, but sadly development fizzled out. This game - working title "cspop" - looks like it's actually further along in development than FreePop and is a much more exciting project. Whilst it looks a bit sparse, the author states (with grammar corrections):



Note I have been concentrating more on the logic to start with, so the look is still a bit cheesy, but that will be looked on soon also. Logic is close to finished though.


Random thought: I wish somebody would revive Emilia Pinball. I did suggest it as a GotM candidate at one point, but it didn't happen. Maybe when I've sorted out the FreeTrain stuff (*eyes look wearily up*) I'll focus on that.



FreeTrain



Speaking of FreeTrain, I registered a SF project. I just need to import SVN then make it build in MonoDevelop or VS2005. I'm waiting on some Japanese speaking help though since my Japanese extends to, "Konichiwa." Er, konichiwa!



There's another update to the Ghouls and Ghosts Remake! I like that game, although I wish the author would incorporate Scale2x and make it not so tiny. All that squinting hurts my eyes. :'(



So, todays music tip... Why have I decided to start giving music tips?

1. I love electro, dirty electro music and it's often not well known

2. Open source games often don't have sound so, well, durrr

3. Something else for me to ramble about, with a tenuous FOSS game link



Onto the tip:

Mark Romboy - The Club (Early)

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Return of Glest?

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Another game whose development appeared to have stagnated was Glest. This 3D RTS was widely acclaimed as a leading open source game when it came out, with high quality graphics and solid gameplay. Although it lacked features, it seemed like the ideal platform to build a game that had depth as well as eye candy. Sadly development just seemed to stop but it looks like it's restarting, with the release of Glest 2.1-rc1. Don't expect anything spectacular with this release but hopefully it's the start of a return of Glest development.



However a game that has shown very nice steady development activity (something that always makes me happy) is VDrift. And a new release is imminent. With a host of new features that really add to the gameplay, this release... well, I'll let their lead developer 'thelusiv' explain:



I'm pretty excited about the release...this will be our first in almost five months, and not only fixes a ton of problems but also adds lots of new things that have made the game several times more fun that it has ever been before.


So get your joysticks & steering wheels ready. ;-)



Dungeon Digger, an open source game inspired by Dungeon Keeper, is looking more and more fun. On Feb 25 a new demo became available with a menu among other things. If you look at the screenshots, it's starting to look like a nice little game. More resources and creatures and I look forward to building me some grotty horrible disgusting places to lure ye ole knights into.



I was also playing the GTK2 version of Freeciv 2.1-beta3. All I'll say is, "Niiiiiice!" Still, it crashed although was much more robust than the SDL counterpart, but it's beta, right? Freeciv 2.1 should be released in April.



There's more but if I keep going then I'll have nothing to report on tomorrow!?



Music tips... I'm gonna start giving them at the end of each blog, starting with an oldish one:

Umek - Posing As Me

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Marching Onwards

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Bygfoot Football Manager development has been resumed. *Cheers!* The latest unstable release is 2.1.1 and contains updates to the UI, the addition of a "luck" factor to make long term success more challenging, and new country definitions.



Bygfoot is a good game. I played version 2.0 a fair bit because I've always been partial to football management games. However, the UI is atrocious. It's clumsy, it does things you don't expect, it forces you to do things you should not have to. For example...



In football you tend to have a first team - that is, your 11 best players - with substitutes to cover that first team. So typically, assuming no injuries or tiredness, you always start with the same 11 players. This is by far the most common approach. However in Bygfoot when you make a substitution in a game, the "team change" is carried over past the game. This forces you to manually undo substitutions after every game. Being a management simulation, this makes the game more tedious than it should be.



Another example; in every single football management game I have ever played, hitting the "next match" button takes you to a screen where you verify your team selection before playing. It's the last thing you do - since just before the game you know who is fit to play etc. In Bygfoot, "next match" jumps straight into the match. If you forgot to undo a substitution, or just bought a new player and forgot to adjust your team sheet, or just got a player back from injury but did not check your team sheet, (there are a 100 cases where you need to check your team sheet) then too bad because the game has already started. So, since checking your team before a match is something you almost always want to do, why does the game not facilitate this need instead of presenting a situation of potential frustration?



Once a bit of intelligent thought is put into the UI then Bygfoot will be a very fun game. Now development has restarted, I am hopeful. :-)



Also seeing a new release recently is Secret Maryo Chronicles. This Maryo-clone is improving with each release although performance on my Windows machine is still appalling for a 2D game. I will try it at home on my Linux box later.



I tried the latest beta of Freeciv today. The SDL client looks neat but was sluggish and unstable, crashing very easily after 20 or so turns each time I tried it. The GTK2 client was much more stable but not as nice looking. Anyway, I'm guessing there's a long time before the final 2.1 release so hopefully the SDL client will improve because it looks much nicer than the GTK2 client. Again there were UI issues, but it's improving with each release. :-)



I wonder if there's anything more I can moan about today? Who made this cup of tea? It tastes horrible! Oh, wait, I made it. Oops!



Actually a quick request. I want to do an isometric FreeGamer logo as part of the ongoing farcical saga that is the redesign of this site. If anybody knows of a good isometric font that I can snaffle, or a good tutorial on creating isomtetric 3D text, please speak up!