Thursday, August 26, 2010

Some more (L)GPL strategy game love

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Ok, quick update before too much dust gathers around here ;)

Just yesterday I stumbled upon this gem of a strategy game over at LGDB:

They call that simple bot???


Its name is Quantum, as some of you might have guessed it is a clone of Dyson/Eufloria. But the game is quite mesmerizing with the strange background noise and your armies of small space tree spores conquering new worlds. But try it yourself!

Now normally clones are not as good as the original, right? Not is this case: Full multiplayer (with master-server and lobby), singleplayer skirmishes, in-game editor etc. are just a small part of the long feature list! Furthermore it's all available under the LGPL (written in Java). Me = happy puppy :)


Seven Kingdoms GPL version



Not exactly super fresh news but the relatively recently GPLed 1997's strategy game Seven Kingdoms got a SDL based Linux port. Check out a small video tutorial here (as I found it difficult understand what to do initially).



So that's all for today. Stay tuned for more awesome FOSS gaming news!

Monday, August 16, 2010

O A.D. Alpha 1 Argonaut

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Fresh from our forums come the news that the first playable (multi-player only) alpha of O A.D. has been released!


It features "aggressive units that attack enemies on sight, lifelike animals that escape danger, two new maps, in-game multiplayer chat and much more"! Check their release news for more details and instructions how to install.

As always this gem of a game is looking for helping hands, so join them now and become part of FOSS gaming history!



P.S.: I will be looking into playing some MP FreeGamer matches with this release, so head over to our forums and discuss when and how!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

RTCW and ET open-sourced

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You probably heard it before elsewhere, but I was waiting for some actual developments to occur instead of making yet another "yay! source release!!!" blog entry ;)

Anyways... the kind people over at id software have decided to release the source code of this two awesome games under the GPLv3.





The guys behind the engine improvements of Quake3, IoQuake3 have already a source repository running and you can expect them to merge all the nice stuff from their Quake3 version into it soon (like in-game VOIP and 3D sound).

XReal goes Wolf:ET

Not really surprising news (due to the long silence of the project), but XReal the game is dead :( But don't worry too much since the main developer will now focus on getting all the awesome engine features into their version of Wolf:ET!

They even got a nice (but older) video along with that announcement showing what kind of ET like environments are possible with XReal:





Last but now least I have asked the guys behind the XReal powered WW2 FPS featured in the last blog post, if the ET source release would effect their plans...check the thread on their message-boards here. Would be for sure awesome if they would decide to make a super awesome Wolf:ET instead :)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Quake2 engine day ;)

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Ok, today I have quite a lot of stuff, and its all Quake2 related :p Believe it or not Quake2 is alive and kicking... and its engine is featuring some of the very best open-source games!

For those who might have missed it: AlienArena 7.45 has been released recently and the release makes an already solid game even more awesome ;)


Further more the UFO:AI team is making some great progress after their highly acclaimed 2.3 release two months ago. Besides a a lot smaller changes, various new sounds have been added since then and the rockets got a nice new explosion effect:



Kaaaboom!


Oh and maybe this is of interest for some of you (personally I never really understood the need for it though): War§ow can now be played in a browser window via a Firefox plugin! Check out their development blog for more details.




Yet another 3D adventure game



A rather interesting Project I was unaware of until recently is Ya3Dag. It has quite a lot of rather unique features not found in any of the other Quake2 engine enhancements, like a in-game level editor (!), advanced terrain rendering, day and night cycles and maybe most interestingly a full Bullet physics integration! The developer of AlienArena showed some interest in the latter already, and I think the level editor and the day and night cycles would make a perfect fit for the Ufo:AI game!

Screenshot from Ya3Dag


Check out more screenshots and some videos here!


But lets talk about the actual game. Ya3Dag is aiming to become a single player adventure game (engine) where you play a poor legless pirate ;) It is already playable to a certain extent, but currently there is only a Windows version available (it works well with WINE though).


I quickly send an email to the developer to ask him about this and some other things regarding the media license and future development: Currently he does not have any plans for porting the game to other platforms, but he is open to other contributors. So, if some people are interested in collaboration it might make sense to set up a proper source repository and such (e.g. a sf.net site). Furthermore he does have plans about replacing all artworks with really free/FOSS ones (Yay!), but currently the project is still far from reaching this goal.



Overdose is looking for help



Overdose was a more controversial title in the past (un-free media and plans to keep the code closed), but at least the source code is available now (or at least should be soon *scratches head* as I was unable to actually locate a download link) and IMHO it is the most advanced Quake2 based engine by the looks:



Recently they have put out a call for help (especially for artists) so maybe you feel like contributing to a really ambitious project? They specifically state that you don't need to be perfect in modeling etc... someone with a good base knowledge and willingness to improve is very welcome! Check out their FAQ if you want to know more about the project.



A small treat at the end!


Ok this is something I just happened to stumble across in the Overdose forum. It's a pretty young project called "Axis Revenge" (name subject to change) currently working with the Xreal Quake3 Engine, but due to various problems with it might change to the Overdose engine (or the UDK, nooooo :( ).

Awesome player model WIP


The rest of the project description sounds awesome too: Alternative history (after WW2) and game-play similar to Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory? Sign me up! But check out their website, and this thread for more awesome pictures! Oh and did I mention that they are looking for help too?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Some Free, Open Source Puzzle Games

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Flipout


Can you imagine what a mix between a Pin-Ball machine, a physics simulator and a breakout clone would look like? Well your wildest dreams have been answered! Check this out:

Flipout
The game Flipout combines all this, and is a very challenging game in addition (didn't manage to even complete the first level :( ). But try it yourself ;)

Mechanical Tower


Another pretty interesting game by the same author is Mechanical Tower, a self described tower defense game: "but instead of defending with towers, you defend in a tower, with traps"

Mechanical Tower
Again the skill level required is quite high... but maybe I am just very bad in puzzle games :p

Jumpman

Another already a bit older puzzle game (Jumpman) has come to my attention since the neat (but closed source) indi hit And Yet It Moves seems to be based on it:


Interested? Well it is pretty hard also :( But don't get discouraged and download it here. Licensing is a bit unclear though... seems to be MIT like, but don't quote me on that ;)

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Two weeks?

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Has it really been that long since the last post here? I'd better contribute before tumble weed hits the front page.



Egoboo 2.8.0 has been released (download + changelog). The Egoboo team stress this is an unstable release, that it hasn't yet seen the kind of testing they would like it to have, but it is "biggest release Egoboo has ever had" so it is good news for the project.





Which got me thinking of the successor to Egoboo, SoulFu. Now, this project has had a rocky history. The author released it as "niceware" (some silly 'you agree to be nice to dogs' license) to prevent forks, but that just meant nobody really got involved. Amazed at the lack of help, along with some criticisms he didn't approve of, he threw his arms up and left the project in a huff.



Some years passed by.



Keen people started to get involved (screenshots!) and it seems it is moving again, albeit hampered by the loss of a domain name and forced to move to a new (crappy free-) forum.



Whether it gets fully rejuvenated and released under a real Free license remains to be seen.



At the end of June, VDrift got a major update. The changes are huge, including a rewritten physics engine that fixes many bugs, improves performance, and vastly improves simulation accuracy, new deferred rendering engine that supports normal maps, true HDR rendering, screen-space ambient occlusion, and soft particles, meshes for brake rotors, better wheel and tire meshes, bugfixes and tweaks to control input management, and new sounds.





Every now and again, somebody comes along and takes a Free game project and does something with it that makes you think "wow" and "that's why Free is cool". That applies to this guy porting VDrift to use OGRE. He wanted a stunt car racer game, he liked VDrift's design and physics but wanted to graphical options presented by OGRE, so he knocked up this rather awesome looking hybrid:





How cool is that? Anyway, find out more at the (surely tentatively named) VDrift-OGRE project.