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Snowboarding Soul Ride Engine Goes GPL 217

Posted by timothy
from the hurts-less-than-the-real-thing dept.
TuringTest writes "LinuxGames reports this news update at the Soul Ride game site. Soul Ride is a snowboarding game with real character physics, and its engine is now released under GPL and available for download. You may see its beautiful screenshots until it gets /.ed. Note that only the engine is GPL'd, not the artwork and data. Can you imagine a GPL game with the Fellowship of the Ring crossing the Caradhras with these graphics?" I hope this release spawns a Linux-friendly snowboarding simulator -- Soul Ride is limited to Windows (9X, NT, 2000) for now.
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Snowboarding Soul Ride Engine Goes GPL

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  • by TopShelf (92521) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:29PM (#5289706) Homepage Journal
    Hobbit-feet should easily handle the job!
  • they use shields, and go down stairs.
  • Fallen off? (Score:1, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    This is insane. Slashdotted before the first comment. Or did the server fall of the 'board? :P
  • Hmm (Score:2, Interesting)

    by stratjakt (596332)
    Open Source game engines are all fine and good with me, but have a good hard look at the game before you go praising it.

    I'm pretty big on snowboarding games, and this isn't a very good one. A terrible one, to be more precise. One of those cheesy OpenGL "render the entire gameworld as polygons and let the video cards horsepower deliver the framerates because its way easier than only rendering on-screen action"

    I'm sorry, but those screenshots look like ass. Even by first-gen voodoo graphics standards. The game engine might be a good learning tool, but I doubt it will spawn the killer-gaming-app-for-linux.
    • Re:Hmm (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      The graphic engine is acutally quite nice.
      You can set a fixed framerate, and the terrain changes to meet your demands.
      You are right that the graphic sucks, and the gameplay is nonexistant.
      But hey - how much can you expect from a commercial...
      • Re:Hmm (Score:5, Informative)

        by stratjakt (596332) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:48PM (#5289859) Journal
        But adapting the terrain is childs play, basically a:

        if frameratethreshold
        render(smaller_mesh)
        else
        render(bigger_mesh)
        end if

        but there's no BSP-tree type ways to clip everything outside of the viewport. It processes every triangle in the 'world' for each frame, whether it's onscreen or not.

        That is to say, it says:

        draw(everything)

        instead of

        figure_out_whats_onscreen

        draw(whats_onscreen)

        My point is that this is just engine just draws a bunch of polygons. No cool special particle effects, no nifty vertex shaders or pixel shaders. No bumpmapping, environment mapping. No nothing. Just a bunch of triangles. As far as something to base a real game on, it's behind even the Quake engine.

        Anyways, it's still good to see people willing to give up their source, even if it's value is nil.
        • Ignorant (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @04:12PM (#5290010)
          Here [gamasutra.com] is a description of the engine.
          • The first guy posting here has no idea what he's talking about. Soul Ride doesn't use a brute force terrain rendering system, it uses an adaptive quadtree system, a technique that Thatcher Ulrich (the person who wrote this engine) is responsible for perfecting... Not to even mention his work on loose octrees, etc.

            In any case, speaking as a developer of games, you can be sure I'll _never_ release anything into the GPL. Not so much because of politics but just because I can't stand the attitude of the GPL zealots who whine and moan about everything.

            • In any case, speaking as a developer of games, you can be sure I'll _never_ release anything into the GPL. Not so much because of politics but just because I can't stand the attitude of the GPL zealots who whine and moan about everything.

              But you will happily read, learn from, and/or use the code written by others and released to the public?
            • No need to be like that, I'm thankful that they release this source and excited! You can bet I'll never complain or mock the work of someone who gives it away for free.

              Don't bite the hand that feeds you

        • Re:Hmm (Score:2, Informative)

          by LucVdB (64664)

          there's no BSP-tree type ways to clip everything outside of the viewport. It processes every triangle in the 'world' for each frame, whether it's onscreen or not.

          You are so clueless it is painful. You've actually given me a headache with your unsubstantiated drivel.
          Here is proof, straigh from CVS, that what you are saying is pure nonsense: the terrain rendering source of the soulride engine [sourceforge.net].

          Hint: you might want to take a look at the Render function. The comments are in plain English.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      I'm sorry, but those screenshots look like ass.

      This saying baffles me. "Looking like ass" could be good (J Lo) or bad (Goatse guy).

      Sorry, but "look like ass" conveys no information.
    • Re:Hmm (Score:1, Insightful)

      by amigaluvr (644269)
      Personally I'd much rather me see other developments happening in OSS, than game engine work

      There is a lot to be contributed to the world through coders doing work that all can use. There is already quite a few games out, and certainly I feel the current producers do games best. There's an expensive and time consuming culture related around game design and production

      Not that they're useless, far from it, but OSS efforts I feel would be best applied to 'more noble pursuits'
      • Re:Hmm (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Not that they're useless, far from it, but OSS efforts I feel would be best applied to 'more noble pursuits'

        Then perhaps this is one of those cases where the great credo of Linux applies--scratch your own itch.

      • Re:Hmm (Score:1, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Not that they're useless, far from it, but OSS efforts I feel would be best applied to 'more noble pursuits'

        Such as creating a miracle to bring The Man In Black back from being only mostly dead so that he can marry his True Love and make Prince Humperdinck suffer? That is a noble cause!

      • Open Source Club! (Score:3, Insightful)

        by NDPTAL85 (260093)
        First Rule of Open Source Club is: You Do Not Tell Other Open Sourcers What to Code.

        Second Rule of Open Source Club is: You Do Not Tell Other Open Sourcers What to Code.
    • i'd have to second that.. looks mor like "Deer Hunter" than a decent snowbaording game (i swear even the first cool boarders looked better than that!). They are probably hoping that by releasing the engine someone will fix their engine for free.
    • Hmm? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by ikoleverhate (607286) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @04:04PM (#5289965)
      "render the entire gameworld as polygons and let the video cards horsepower deliver the framerates because its way easier than only rendering on-screen action"

      You think so? I doubt very much Thatcher Ulrich would code a new crappy engine, when he could use his famous (at least among those who keep up with such things) Chunked LOD [tulrich.com] algorithm. Thatcher released a sample implementation a while ago on sourceforge with source for linux and windows.

      The chunked LOD algo is capable of using HUGE datasets (eg 285MB in the demo). Unlikely then that he's doing a "render the entire blah blah" thing...

      You obviously know very little about graphics programming and more importantly have spent zero time investigating your claims.

      Fair enough if you don't like the screen shots, but you really can't put down the engine, or it's programmer. Thatcher Ulrich is one of very few professional game programmers who publishes (both source and papers) his CURRENT algorithms (eg not 5 year old ones like Carmack). He invented the (also famous among people who know) "loose octree" method of spacial partitioning.

    • Jeez, how hard is that? You got something for Christmas from that relative you barely even see, do what I told my son. Even if you don't like it, this person went to some effort to do something nice.

    • One of those cheesy OpenGL "render the entire gameworld as polygons and let the video cards horsepower deliver the framerates because its way easier than only rendering on-screen action"


      You obviously don't know what you are talking about.. hell one look at the system requirements ought to tip you off if common sense doesn't considering this is designed to run well on 300mhz computers with 64 megs of ram and any card that is capable of displaying opengl
  • Screenshots (Score:5, Informative)

    by hiero (75335) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:33PM (#5289742) Homepage
    The perl script seems to overworked/nonfunctional, but you can view a slideshow of screenshots at: http://www.soulride.com/products/screenshots/scree nshot01.html.
  • Great pics (Score:1, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward


    Internal Server Error
    The server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was unable to complete your request.

    Please contact the server administrator, markly@pair.com and inform them of the time the error occurred, and anything you might have done that may have caused the error.

    More information about this error may be available in the server error log.



    I would of preffered it in color tho
  • by wormbin (537051) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:34PM (#5289748)

    Check out these screenshots [whistler.com]. Lots of polygons and the FPS is good even on old hardware.

    Seriously, sometimes reality is better.

    • by Gojira Shipi-Taro (465802) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:43PM (#5289828) Homepage
      Not if you ARE old hardware. I'd like to continue walking into my golden years, and real snowboarding would stress my already damaged knee enough to put me on the "uses a cane" list by my early 40's.

      I happen to enjoy Snowboarding/skateboarding games because I liked that stuff when I was able to do it (well skateboarding anyhow, snowboarding didn't exist then, or hadn't been heard of).

      Besides, in this economy, fewer people can shell out hundreds or thousands of dollars, and take time off from work, to go to some mountain resort than can shell out $20 (or $100, w/controller) for a simulation.
      • $20 ? Which mountains are you going to?

        Whistler is CDN $69.50 per day (after tax) if you don't have a pass or coupon.

        With a pass it gets down to approx CDN $52 (after tax) but still...

        now if those prices were in USD.. they'd be like .... oh wait... what was I talking about? ;)

    • Games and reality are two different things, not in competition with eachother. Both provide an entertaining challenge. The whole simulation thing isn't necessarily for recreating the feeling of snowboarding. It is an attempt to make games that the player can relate to. Games which are too abstract are harder to enjoy. If anything, I think of playing a simulation more like watching a little dude in a simplified world with stuff that is remotely similar to ours.
      • Games which are too abstract are harder to enjoy

        I assume you're not a Tetris fan.

    • I lived in Vail last season. I "only" rode 50 days, but many of my friends did 80-100 days. So we were basically working and snowboarding. And when the day was over and we were just hanging out in someone's apt? We were probably playing SSX. Reality is fun, games are fun. Not mutually exclusive.
  • That was a damn impressively quick slashdotting.
  • memo (Score:5, Funny)

    by grub (11606) <slashdot@grub.net> on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:35PM (#5289757) Homepage Journal

    From: Bill Gates
    to: DirectX_Devel

    ALERT! - VERY IMPORTANT - ALERT!

    There has been a GPL game engine released! [sourceforge.net] Consider it your top priority to make our next release of DirectX incompatible with this new viral-licensed package.

    Long live Me,

    -Bill
  • Screenshots listing (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:35PM (#5289763)


    Point your WGET (to mirror) at

    http://www.soulride.com/products/screenshots/image s/ [soulride.com]

  • No it's not (Score:5, Informative)

    by shlong (121504) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:36PM (#5289768) Homepage
    Soul Ride is limited to Windows (9X, NT, 2000) for now.

    Gee, that's funny. I guess the Linux version that I've been playing for the last two months has just been a warped dream. Maybe not? [soulride.com]
  • by cerebralsugar (203167) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:36PM (#5289770)
    Lets hope the engine gets more FPS than the webserver can take hits...
  • Tenebrae (Score:5, Interesting)

    by labratuk (204918) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:39PM (#5289788)
    Can you imagine a GPL game with the Fellowship of the Ring crossing the Caradhras with these graphics?

    What would be even nicer would be a totally GPL game based on the upcoming Tenebrae 2.0 [sf.net] engine.
  • Woohoo (Score:5, Funny)

    by athakur999 (44340) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:39PM (#5289794) Journal
    I hope this release spawns a Linux-friendly snowboarding simulator

    Me too. This is exactly the killer app Linux needs to fully make it onto the desktop. Just last week I was telling my grandmother she should install Linux, and I told her about OpenOffice, Mozilla, KDE, etc. But when she asked "is there a snowboarding simulator?" I knew I wouldn't be winning her over to the Linux side.
  • by ReadParse (38517)
    OK, call me a Karma Whore, but here's [odigames.com] a link to another page with screenshots from the game:
  • the source? (Score:2, Informative)

    by depsypher (177056)
    This announcement seems a little premature seeing as there haven't been any actual source files submitted to sourceforge yet. Screenshots are fine and good, but where's the source?
    • Re:the source? (Score:3, Informative)

      by kyrre (197103)
      Dude. You should dig some more. Sources are here [sourceforge.net] Its in the projects cvs repository. Browsable in nice syntax highlighted code.
  • Go Legolas! (Score:1, Redundant)

    by Quixadhal (45024)
    Yeah, now Legolas doesn't have to board across pesky stairs and orcs anymore, he can have real CGI snow!
  • I'd like to see you try get the license to use those characters in such a game.

    i.e. good fscking luck.

  • Meh (Score:2, Troll)

    by bogie (31020)
    It's cool that the engine is gpl'd (think we'll ever actually see a really good game using it?), but the screen shots for this particular game don't look that great to me. It looks like something from 1999. The terrain looks decent, but the character is god-awful looking. Really generic and jaggy.
  • Hmm.. (Score:5, Funny)

    by k98sven (324383) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:50PM (#5289875) Journal
    Guess I know what the next version of Tux Racer is going to look like..
  • by stratjakt (596332) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @03:52PM (#5289895) Journal
    "Note that only the engine is GPL'd, not the artwork and data."

    3D engines really aren't the time-consuming part of creating a game. It would be nice to see some 'open sourced' player models, motion captures, sound effects, musics, etc, etc..

    I know there are a ton of people versed in 3D modelling out there. Perhaps they can offer up some of their 3D 'doodles' to the OSS community for use in games. Maybe a sort of BSD/GPL liscense for artwork/data?
    • by AugstWest (79042) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @04:07PM (#5289979)
      Another cool side effect of this could be the standardization of 3d models in some games. Then people could build one model of themselves and insert it into the games they play.

      Sure, each game could render them differently, but it would be nice if there was a spec that could be followed. Each game could load the player's model, then enhance it however they see fit.
      • There could be advantages of common formats, but pretty much every game which doesn't use a standard format has a free converted to convert from standard formats.

        The problem with using a common format is that games work in different ways. Consider this: If we were talking about making maps interoperable, that'd be impossible: You could never share between a portals-based game (like Descent) with a BSP-tree based game like Quake, because they organize data in a fundamentally different manner.

        You can't make a format common and still allow the coders any flexibility.

        With say, images, it's different: it's an image, there is only so much you can do with it, but even now many of the things that an ingenius programmer (... Carmack, Romero, Sweeney... ) *could* do with an engine have yet to be conceived of: the possibilities for a full 3D interactive environment is a lot greater than for the simple things that have already been standardized.

        It might be nice, but don't hold your breath.
        • You could never share between a portals-based game (like Descent) with a BSP-tree based game like Quake, because they organize data in a fundamentally different manner.

          You can. Both of those formats can be automatically compiled from a shared representation as simple polygons. The resultant map won't have the same manual optimization as if an artist had tweaked it by hand, though. For at least one of the engines, it will be slower than necessary. Quake and Descent are both 3 generations old, though, so a modern computer will chuckle at the extra work. (And the created Descent map may be quite ugly, as stretched-inverse-cubes are unlikely to gracefully represent the details of a Quake level)

          The more substantive problem to sharing maps is the gameplay itself. Imagine what would happen if Mr. Quake was spawned in a Descent map: he'd run 10 meters, then fall into an inescapable depression- because the map was built for a flying hero. Likewise, a Descent spaceship might find a Quake map terminally boring ("I just fly up, over the castle, back down, and win!")

          If the maps are intended for more compatible genres, then it might work a little better. At least assumptions like "player needs to walk across floor to the doorway" will hold true. But still, building a fun, professional-quality game map means tweaking to exactly challenge the player's ability to move, jump, and shoot.

          Restricting the desired category of games to highly realistic ones makes the idea of sharing terrain much more worthwhile. In that case, as long as the terrain correctly duplicates the original location, then any inability of the game system to work well in it can be filed as a bug against the software.

          In particular, I've noticed a trend in several FPS programs to include the Fort McKenna MOUT training grounds [sri.com] as a playable map, which becomes a common point of comparison.
    • It would be nice to see some 'open sourced' player models, motion captures, sound effects, musics, etc, etc.. I know there are a ton of people versed in 3D modelling out there. Perhaps they can offer up some of their 3D 'doodles' to the OSS community for use in games. Maybe a sort of BSD/GPL liscense for artwork/data?
      A really excellent point. If we could organize such efforts, perhaps through something like Creative Commons [creativecommons.org], I'm certain we'd see more (and higher-quality) open-source games emerge. Think about it -- for every 3d game that wants to feature *people walking around in an environment*, a whole new set of assets need to be generated just to get that fundamental base-line goal accomplished. There's so much work to do before you get to the "making it fun" part, I'm not surprised game developers are hesitant to volunteer their efforts.
  • I hope that this particular game is only a hastily thrown together demo of the basic functions of this engine, hopefully this will support much prettier textures. As it is, this looks like a playstation 1 game to me.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @04:02PM (#5289955)
    To whomever takes over development of the engine: Please, please, please, do not fill it with frickin' penguins everywhere.
    • Nonono! That would be GREAT!

      TOns of little squawking penguins.. Big snowboard with Windows Logo.. Slalom over the penguins, nice big blood splatters...

      Hrm.
    • by Spoing (152917) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @06:18PM (#5291105) Homepage
      To whomever takes over development of the engine: Please, please, please, do not fill it with frickin' penguins everywhere.

      What about ones with frickin 'la-zer' beams on thier heads? Is that too much to ask? Over the top?

    • I have to agree with you, but for some reason any time I show a female Linux, they say "Ooh look at the penguin its so cute!", even when I didn't realise there was a penguin around :)

      So depends on your target audience.

    • You mean like SSX on the Playstation II?

      Yep, they are in one of the shortcuts on the Hawaii track. Penguins. Not quite filled with frickin' penguins, but they are there. Both original SSX and SSX: Tricky have it.

      The first time I saw them I was seriously baked and, well... (I mean how can you do anything involving a Snowboard without weed? Well, unless you are Canadian and it is the Olympics...)
  • these graphics (Score:4, Interesting)

    by frovingslosh (582462) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @04:10PM (#5289998)
    Apparently the these graphics link is bad or has been taken down. I've played the game (on Windows) and I'm not all that impressed with the graphics. One thing you quickly notice is that all the trees are cheap 2-d cheats and keep the same "front" towards you as you move past or around them. It's fine that the engine is being GPL'ed rather than lost, but it still remains for someone to do something good with it. And if , as someone else here said, it gives the hardware the whole world and relies on the hardware to sort it out, then I don't expect it's going to be very useful in a lot of cases (the software I used did seem to limit how far I could go without good reason, I expect this is why).
    • > all the trees are cheap 2-d cheats and keep the same "front" towards you as you move past or around them

      You're pretty ignorant about graphics.

      1. The proper technical name for that technique is called billboarding.

      2. Billboard sprites are commonly used in games. From Doom, all the way to the latest XBox games, such as Bungine's Halo. (Look at the trees on top of the hills in the 2nd Level.)

      3. How many games have you written or worked on?
  • by AugstWest (79042) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @04:11PM (#5290005)
    ...is they've modeled real mountains into the game. That's something I've *always* wanted to see in a snowboarding game.

    They've done Stratton [soulride.com], Breckenridge [soulride.com] and Jay Peak [soulride.com].
  • by delus10n0 (524126) <delusion_@pdsys.oAUDENrg minus poet> on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @04:17PM (#5290038) Homepage
    Can you imagine a GPL game with the Fellowship of the Ring crossing the Caradhras with these graphics?

    Yes, I can, and it's awful.

    These graphics remind me of an old landscape generator I had back on my 486. It generated a plasma-looking sky and a 3d landscape you used your mouse to fly over.

    Big whoop, but I guess it's cool that the engine was released.
    • by Xeger (20906) <slashdot@tracker ... ENnet minus poet> on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @05:29PM (#5290676) Homepage
      The difference is that your old 486 landscape generator used voxel terrain. Voxels are a great way to fool the eye into thinking its looking at a detailed, textured solid surface -- but they stink if you want to interact with the terrain, or rotate the camera, or do pretty much anything other than pan around.

      Compare this to Soul Ride, which uses an implementation of ROAM (rigorously optimized adaptive mesh). While it isn't quite cutting-edge anymore--the original ROAM paper was written a few years back--no other published game that I know of has used it yet.

      ROAM allows arbitrarily detailed terrain. It represents the terrain as a quadtree -- a space which is subdivided into four parts, each of which is subdivided into four parts, etc ad infinitum -- and by intelligently collapsing and expanding quadtree nodes based on the distance from the viewer to the terrain.

      For you, this means that the hillock in front of your nose will look perfectly smooth, and the jagged peak in the background will also look perfectly smooth, and each of them will only use as many polygons as it needs to maintain the appearance of smoothness. That translates to a vastly improved framerate for you, and better memory usage to boot.
      • ROAM allows arbitrarily detailed terrain. It represents the terrain as a quadtree -- a space which is subdivided into four parts, each of which is subdivided into four parts, etc ad infinitum -- and by intelligently collapsing and expanding quadtree nodes based on the distance from the viewer to the terrain.
        Actually your describing how quad trees work, which I Soul Rider is based on. But ROAM works by splitting triangles in halves recursively, and is quite different.
    • That wasn't a landscape generator, it was the easter egg in Excel
  • this may be a good direction to go for game developers. if they release they engine under the GPL it allows community input, and may get some interesting things done.

    and releasing the data files commercially is not that bad. it might give game develoers more of an incentive to make a good plot (first person shooters) so that people would want that added material.
  • Im currently doing some work with the Quake II engine. The one thing I've really been missing is better terrain rendering. Boxes and Pyramids can only be fun for so long. This engine seems to have more advanced terrain rendering than Quake II. Interesting indeed.
  • The game engine has been ported to Linux, and was released with an addon pack called "Virtual Jay Peak" a while ago. The engine plays the normal game just fine. I compiled Soul Ride for Linux just yesterday with no problems at all.
  • Can you imagine a GPL game with the Fellowship of the Ring crossing the Caradhras with these graphics?

    Unfortunately, yes.
  • Allright! (Score:3, Funny)

    by cgenman (325138) on Wednesday February 12, 2003 @05:36PM (#5290749) Homepage
    Now in just a few months we'll have a snowboarding version of Nethack!
  • I hope this doesn't go the way of Tux Racer, which was initially GPL and had a large community providing support and ideas to the lead developers. Then Sunspire Studios turned around and took on a closed license.

    • flame on

      Sunspire replaced the parts they didn't make and closed it, as they are fully legally and morally within thier right to do. They made it. They own the copyright. They can do as they wish.

      Since Tux Racer has been continuously in the top Sourceforge downloads, and others had made modest GPLed contributions, Sunspire figured that selling it would be a good idea. I can't fault that logic. An odd thing happened though. Some folks that might not understand or agree with the GPL felt slighted when a closed and for-pay branch appeared and refused to pay for it out of some odd sense of principle (or being cheap).

      The GPLed version is still available so nothing is stopping anyone from making improvements to it.

      That said, so far, the commercial version is quite a bit better. Commercial Tux Racer is $15 [tuxracer.com]. It runs under both Linux (x86) and Windows. I bought 2 copies, one for me and one for a niece of mine and I consider the price a bargain.

      flame off

      • The issue was that many people felt that they had been misled by Sunspire. The tuxracer development community, rather than individually working on their own little branch, collaborated with Sunspire, and provided much advice and tips throughout the game's development, not just code. People who would have put their efforts elsewhere had they known the final game would not be Free.
        Sunspire then said the equivalent of: "so long and thanks for all the ideas".

        Yes, they were legally within their rights, but it still doesn't seem very nice.

  • I agree with some of the above posters. I don't think the graphics are all that impressive, though I have to say that they DO look better than 90% of the linux games we have now. Any code coming over to our side is better than nothing, and maybe someone will look at this code and say "hey, I can use this to /insert really cool statement here/"

    maybe
    • I agree with some of the above posters. I don't think the graphics are all that impressive, though I have to say that they DO look better than 90% of the linux games we have now. Any code coming over to our side is better than nothing, and maybe someone will look at this code and say "hey, I can use this to /insert really cool statement here/"

      Make that 99% of the Linux games we have now. Actually, the terrain rendering is quite nice, so is the snow texture mapping. The snowboarder figure is done with taste, though not to today's typical production values. The trees suck pretty badly, but that is exactly where somebody could go in and bring the graphics up to today's standards, relying purely on the current generation of fast GPUs to handle a lot of extra splats.

      The terrain rendering is expansive - it's hard to spot a backdrop, if there is one at all.
      • You're right..the thing that stood out most in my mind were the jaggies...big, blatant jaggies :-) The kind that could saw through a tree. I haven't seen the game in action, so I'm ill equipt to defend my "the graphics suck" argument beyond the screenshot i saw, so till I get a copy or I see a movie, I'll just stick where I am, hoping that graphics in general improve....

  • Try this [soulride.com] link.
  • by GiMP (10923)
    > I hope this release spawns a Linux-friendly
    > snowboarding simulator -- Soul Ride is limited to
    > Windows (9X, NT, 2000) for now.

    Uh.. first of all, Soul Ride was GPL'ed at least a week ago. I downloaded it several days ago and have been playing it happily... IN LINUX.

    Soul Ride was ported to Linux before it was even GPL'ed. Do slashdot editors even check the stories that they post?
  • Alternate URL (Score:2, Informative)

    by stevenp (610846)
    A still working URL for the screenshots can be found here [soulride.com]
  • If you think this engine was neat then check out Blueberry3D [blueberry3d.com]. It's also a terrain engine but it works on fractals instead of meshes. So you don't need a gigantic mesh database which you then cull or use LOD on. Instead you generate all of the terrain from fractal seeds.

    There are a few movies you can download from their site and they are quite impressive. Particularly the trees IMHO. (Which look very real, even close up.)

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