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Games Entertainment

Liberated Games Launches 168

Posted by timothy
from the still-seeking-free-aztec dept.
Crusader writes "Two LinuxGames staff members have launched Liberated Games, a site devoted to cataloguing full commercial titles that have been released for free by the developer or publisher, either with the full source code or without. The current list is available here; the site tracks releases for all major computer platforms (Windows, Mac OSX, Linux), so feel free to submit any missing games to the list."
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Liberated Games Launches

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  • by physicsboy500 (645835) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @02:53PM (#10103611)
    Sweet! Now I don't have to liberate them myself!
  • Linux needs games! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by g-to-the-o-to-the-g (705721) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @02:56PM (#10103636) Homepage Journal
    I really hope companies like Epic games and id Software make lots more linux games! I'm still waiting for the Linux doom 3 build, and Linux is seriously in the need of more games. Hopefully Epic and id will motivate more big companies to port their games to linux. While they're at it, they should pressure ATI to fix their linux drivers.

    On a similar note, I think Linux is a good candidate for future gaming platforms (I'm thinking ps3) because of it's flexibility. Last I checked, sony has already made use of Linux in their products.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Sony offered a Linux kit for their playstation2 for developers.

      It was a harddrive a keyboard, and I think a nic card. Pretty cool stuff, I think there are still kits floating around.

      Linux would make a great gaming OS, you can minimalize background proccessors and tweaking-ability is great.

      Just needs more/better drivers for latest vid cards and more games.

      But I like the ones I have. It's always nice when I see people type:
      "oh shit my virus scanner just went off, BRB"
      "oh shit I need to reboot"
      "oh shit I..
      • by KDR_11k (778916) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:21PM (#10103781)
        Linux would make a great gaming OS, you can minimalize background proccessors and tweaking-ability is great.

        What exactly would you use the OS for on a console? Drivers are unnecessary since low level access can be compiled into the game binary and anything the game might need can be on the disk. Having an abstraction layer in between would become an issue, for one thing the layer will probably be less flexible (or less efficient) than direct hardware access and for another thing the shipped version would have to be declared as final, they couldn't update it if they discover a bug or need new features, it could break compatibility with older games. Besides, Linux wasn't designed for being used as a games platform.
        If a game wanted to use a customized Linux, the dev can customize Linux themselves and come out with exactly the version they want. No dev could complain about the OS lacking some vital feature.

        Also, delivering the source code as mandated by the GPL would be a problem, where would you store it?

        Linux might help pirates and hobbyists to interact with the hardware, but a console manufacturer wants neither group involved and there wouldn't be an advantage for the commercial developers.
        • Also, delivering the source code as mandated by the GPL would be a problem, where would you store it?

          On an offer, valid for at least 3 years, to deliver the source code to any third party, on a medium customarily used for software exchange, for not more than the cost of shipping and handling.
        • by xgamer04 (248962)
          Maybe you haven't seen an Xbox, or are missing Sony's near-monthly announcements about their upcoming hardware, but consoles are going to be doing more than just play games in the future. MP3, video-on-demand, that kind of thing.
        • Modern consoles have to have some software independent of the game. Checking disk for cd-audio/DVD-video, Memory (card or harddrive) has to be interactive with. Perhapse not a full blown OS, but similar to what DOS seemed to be.
        • by DrYak (748999) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @06:14PM (#10104809) Homepage
          What exactly would you use the OS for on a console? Drivers are unnecessary since low level access can be compiled into the game binary

          In theory you're right, but there's a couple of reasons why nobody does like this actually :
          • The abstraction layer of the OS are making everything so slow ? Ok so let's drop the OS. Oh, and as we are at it : let's drop all librairies at all. Let's write a complete game in plain C from scratch. And let's drop the C and write the game using pure assemblere, so we can optimize every signle instruction by hand....
            Once upon a time it could be done like this. On some old 8bit console, all you had to do to create a game was to write a short program, under a few thousand instruction, It had only to read input from joy pad, a move 1 or 2 sprites on screen (using hardware sprites) and do some very basic sprite-to-background (hardware assisted) collision detections. This could be done by hand, without using any other library.
            Nowadays games are much more complicated : you've got more complexe graphics, you must have realistic physics. Your GFX hardware is much more general purpose (which is good), but that means you must implement everything ("3D mesh of a warrior running on a height-field ground" isn't a single hardware feature). Plus you have internet, savegames hardware (harddisk or memory stick) where files must be shared with other applications (hence the need of a file system) etc...
            Still wanna write a full online game, with a robust TCP/IP stack, and everything else including in-game voice-chat with other players ?...

            Modern console DO NEED an OS, because it's getting just to much work to re-invent the wheel everytime you write a new game. Yes, the OS adds an overhead, compared to hand-optimized assembler. But it removes a lot of head-ache from developpement process, and moderne consoles have more powerful processors : it's not only to make them run faster, it's also to make the overhead of OS and librairies more negligible.

            But any OS could do the job. Actually, some early console of this generation could run multiple OSes. The DreamCast had a minimalist BIOS that could just check and boot watever OS was on the GD-ROM. Most of the games were built using SEGA's proprietary system "Katana". But there were also a few games made using Microsoft's Windows CE (hence the "compatible with..." logo on the front [cheatheaven.co.uk]), most homebrew games are done using KallistiOS [allusion.net], some fans managed to port the penguin to this console [sf.net]. You have the choice of the OS (DreamCast will boot any of them), but you have to use one, because few sane people want to code a 3D application by hand in SuperH assembler....

          If a game wanted to use a customized Linux, the dev can customize Linux themselves and come out with exactly the version they want.

          Yes the "boot whatever customized OS you-like" is cool. But console esigner don't do it. They like to force THEIR proprietary OS because of :

          • Copy protection. Even as far as the NES and the Genesis, some version of the console had BIOSes whose only purpose was to check if the cartridge is licensed and if it's not imported. Beside of this, the BIOSes were completly useless. (Prior BIOS-less version of the console ran the same game without any differences, and today emulator don't need BIOSes to run this games). But it helped constructors to remove control form end users.

            Microsoft could have done some "boot your own favorite OS" console like the Dreamcast. But instead they've choosen to design a console with a Windows-2000-based kernel. The user has no other choice than to boot Dashboard, before everything else, and then the Dashboard will decide what the user can and can't do...

            And game designer HAVE to pay a license for the constuctor's proprietary OS because they cannot use anything else.


          • by KDR_11k (778916) on Monday August 30, 2004 @01:20AM (#10106751)
            I didn't say development has to take place in low level. Of course you can use libraries, but you have to statically link them and you could alter them to your heart's content. CodeWarrior, for example, says in its feature list that it can optimize libraries by removing functions that never actually get used. With a shared OS you'd have to keep the entire library in memory, whether you like it or not. Since consoles are notoriously low on RAM (the XB2 will use 256MB, that's less than Doom 3 can take up just for the textures) such optimization can become critical.
        • Multiprocessing, for one thing. An OS would allow all sorts of cocurrent apps to run ;network stacks, telephony, music streaming, etc. Not many console manufactures are willing to give up that control though.

          Linux's design philosophy has grown a lot, and certainly nothing stopping it from doing the job.

        • Even most embedded software has some form of OS- google for Green Hills and WindRiver, the two biggest. Generally you let the OS deal with threading, scheduling, networking, and basic things like semaphores and message queues. Actually, embedded OSes are fairly similar to Linux kernels in a lot of ways, except they tend to be even more lightweight.
        • by mikael (484) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @09:31PM (#10105699)
          What exactly would you use the OS for on a console? Drivers are unnecessary since low level access can be compiled into the game binary and anything the game might need can be on the disk.

          Current generation console systems already have a small kernel. Enough to load files off CD-ROM, download data from the network using TCP/IP, and run multiple lightweight threads. Many games (even early generation home computers like the Atari 800) made use of parallel processing to implement AI (the spare CPU time during vertical blank interrupts could be used to run depth searches of possible moves).
          Have a read of Chapter 8 of De Re Atari [atariarchives.org] to see why having an OS/kernel is useful.


          THE OPERATING SYSTEM

          INTRODUCTION

          With every ATARI Home Computer System comes an ATARI 10K Operating System Cartridge. The importance of this cartridge is often overlooked. Without it, you have a lot of potential, but absolutely nothing else! This situation is not unique to the ATARI Home Computer System; It is encountered with all computers. A computer is, after all, merely a collection of hardware devices. A user must manage these resources to accomplish any task. If all programmers had to start from scratch on each program, we would have an even larger software shortage than we have today. The solution that has evolved over the years is to build in a program that manages the resources available to the system, and eases the programming burden required to control them. This program is known by various names: Operating System, Master Control Program, System Executive, System Monitor, etc. In the ATARI Home Computer System it is known as the Operating System or OS.
        • Also, delivering the source code as mandated by the GPL would be a problem, where would you store it?

          you don't have to provide the source code right along with the binary version (ever downloaded an rpm? they don't automatically come with source code.) you just have to make sure that it's available to anyone who gets a copy of the binary version, and that you make it known to them that it is available. the gpl provides a list of several different ways this condition could be met. iirc, in the early da
  • by FiReaNGeL (312636) <fireang3l@hotmai ... om minus painter> on Sunday August 29, 2004 @02:57PM (#10103641) Homepage
    This 'official' list is very nice to have, especially to track games with source available (good educational code).

    As you may already know, 'unofficially' free software site Home of the Underdogs http://www.the-underdogs.org/ [the-underdogs.org] links to source or binary (now by Bittorrent!) to all old games abandonned by developpers and/or publishers. An endless source of fun and nostalgia... be sure to check it out!
  • nice Compilation (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Grant29 (701796) * on Sunday August 29, 2004 @02:57PM (#10103643) Homepage
    This is a great way to find lots of Linux games in one place. Previously I had to search Google, follow tons of broken links, get pisssed off, etc... I've stil had better luck playing games under windows. Maybe I'll check out some of the source code. Reading others' source code can be a nice learning experience.
    --

    Play the Gmail game, win a free Gmail invitation! [retailretreat.com]
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Ingres and Firefox (the database) comes to mind; as does OpenWatcom (C). Others?

    Oh yeah... soon Linux'll be free'd by SCO.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 29, 2004 @02:57PM (#10103649)

    This is excellent news! I just found out Duke Nukem 3D is not only on the list of liberated games, but that it also runs natively on Linux now! Grab a copy from http://icculus.org/duke3d/index.html [icculus.org] and meet me for a game. I'll be the one with the pipe bomb.

    Oh and first p0st.

  • by Hidyman (225308) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @02:58PM (#10103651) Homepage
    Now if we could just liberate them from the /. effect.
  • Unreal Tournament (Score:5, Informative)

    by StillAnonymous (595680) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @02:59PM (#10103657)
    Well, the site's slashdotted now, but UT's source code [fileshack.com] was released, although the license isn't GPL..
    • Re:Unreal Tournament (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      It's not the full source code.
      • OK smarty...what's missing? The writeup on Fileshack sounds like it is complete enough to recompile with MS C++ 6. The basic console version of which is now free as in beer.

        Anyway, this is the EULA [yes, it's a EULA, if you thought Epic GPLed Unreal Engine 2 you're wrong) so if you feel like trying your hand at playing with the code here are the limitations you have to work under. Void where prohibited. Sorry, Tenneseee.

        http://udn.epicgames.com/Two/UnrealEngine2Runtime E ULA [epicgames.com]

    • Re:Unreal Tournament (Score:5, Informative)

      by Sigma 7 (266129) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @09:50PM (#10105791)
      That's just the source code for the rendering engine. Evenything that was originally in Unreal Tournament was cored out, leaving you with just the renderer and some netcode. It's also not very useful unless you pay a *very* large license fee, with a minimum price of $350,000.

      Even so, the release of the code at that level isn't really significant - it still possible to do major changes to the gameplay with the engine to write things like "Red Orchestra", "Alien Blast", and even "Unreal Annihilation". All that's needed to do this sort of stuff is a license of UT2004 (as long as it is a free distribution that doesn't include the binary.)

      A cheaper alternative would either be the Quake engines (GPL or pay $10,000), or the Tribes 2 [garagegames.com] engine ($100 per developer.)
  • by th1ckasabr1ck (752151) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @02:59PM (#10103659)
    ... Quake 3 to that list.

    Also - Dink Smallwood [rtsoft.com] is a fun, quirky RPG which is also now available free of charge.

    • Actually, even though ID open sources the engines (yay!), they do NOT open or release the assets for free. So the levels, textures, etc remain copyright ID software, and you have to buy a copy of the original game to use them.

      This seems fair, as they continue to make money off the actual games (Think Gameboy Doom ports, PSX Quake ports), whilst the engines are now commercially unviable.
    • Looks like they already did that. This page [idsoftware.com] lists the Quake 3 source as download.
    • Aye, Dink Smallwood.. a fun game, that :) I've been a member of the community ever since it was released as freeware in '99, and the source was released earlier this year, making things ever-so-interesting. Since I will soon be the webmaster of the one and only living Dink Smallwood fan site, I may as well 'pimp' it: The Dink Network [rpgplanet.com] Feel free to bother us all.
  • by conner_bw (120497) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:00PM (#10103664) Homepage Journal
    These are but a few liberated games.

    What we need is a persuasive liberation militia. There are hundreds of thousands of games still enslaved by their developers on many aging platforms such as the C64, Nintendo, Etc.

    Freedom for all games, now!

    • Liberatedgames.com to Commercial Developers:
      "Pharaoh! Let my software go!"
    • by ultranova (717540) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:24PM (#10103801)

      What we need is a persuasive liberation militia. There are hundreds of thousands of games still enslaved by their developers on many aging platforms such as the C64, Nintendo, Etc.

      Fortunately, some upstanding citizens have realized their responsibility and have formed underground networks to liberate the poor captives and transport them into safety.

      As always, the officials are after these groups of freedom fighters, and many have fallen, but the rest fight on. And there is good news too: in the past, the captive games, once freed, were taken to secret safe houses (called "ftp sites" by the underground), but nowadays, a number of networks are moving the captives around constantly, making it almost impossible to recapture them.

      Three hurrays for the brave freedom fighters, past, present and future members of Razor, Myth, Khan, Origin and others. And to the brave, upstanding citizens, who risk arrest helping liberated games continuing their run on the wild. Hurray ! Hurray ! Hurray!

      Freedom for all games, now!

      Most games are liberated, some (like Half-Life 2) before they are even released ;).

    • "What we need is a persuasive liberation militia."

      A regime-change! We could civilise the game-playing companies, and bring democracy to their offices! Bring out the bombs!
    • There are already some of these types around the web [the-underdogs.org]
  • Coral link (Score:4, Informative)

    by g-to-the-o-to-the-g (705721) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:02PM (#10103675) Homepage Journal
    Here [nyud.net] is the Coral link, seeing as the site appears to be /.'d (Coral seems to be suffering from the /. affect too, interestingly enough).
    • I wonder if it is because the original site is /.ed that the Coral link is unable to create a cache. I bet it would have worked slightly before the /.ing.
  • All links dead (Score:1, Redundant)

    by randyest (589159)
    Slashdotted at 7 posts. I think they underestimated the interest in free (as in both gratis and libre) games.

  • Underdogs (Score:5, Informative)

    by XorNand (517466) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:07PM (#10103704)
    If you're looking to d/l old-school MSDOS abandonware, The Home of the Underdogs [the-underdogs.org] rocks. While the organizers admit that the site isn't exactly kosher, they do remove stuff at the requests of the copyright holder. A lot of the more major titles aren't found there but if you have a little-known, favorite PC game from 10-15 years ago, odds are they have it. I've gotten Megatraveller, Deathtrack, The Magic Candle, SEAL Team, among others.

    If you're looking for a good DOS emulator to play these classics under 2K/XP or Linux, I use DOSBox [sourceforge.net]. It's not perfect, but it does work for most of the games that I've tried.
    • VDMsound (Score:4, Informative)

      by yeremein (678037) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @05:11PM (#10104475)
      Here's a lightweight solution for Win2K/XP users that provides SB Pro emulation to a DOS box:

      http://www.ece.mcgill.ca/~vromas/vdmsound/

      It's not a DOS emulator, and it won't let you play DOS games on Linux or Mac, but it will let DOS games have sound under Win2K/XP. It's probably faster than using DOSBox since it doesn't emulate the x86, just the sound card. Which may or may not be a good thing. The original Descent runs at 400 frames per second under VDMsound on my low-end Athlon XP.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    ... that LinuxGames has two staff members!
  • Two points (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Have Blue (616) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:09PM (#10103712) Homepage
    Slashdotted, so I can't check this myself...
    • Is this site tracking entire games that have been freed (like Abuse) or games where only the *code* has been freed (Quake)? Abuse is in the public domain and anyone can post or download it; Quake's art still belongs to iD and posting or downloading the entire game, pak files and all, is a violation of their copyright.
    • I see a lot of people linking to abandonware sites. Abandonware is still copyright violation, and its status in that respect is no different from zero-day warez (only the arguments and justifications surrounding it are slightly different). If this site is dedicated to only tracking games that are completely and officially free, good. Maybe it will encourage game companies to free products that cannot possibly be a revenue stream.
    • Re:Two points (Score:3, Interesting)

      by EzInKy (115248)
      I see a lot of people linking to abandonware sites. Abandonware is still copyright violation, and its status in that respect is no different from zero-day warez (only the arguments and justifications surrounding it are slightly different).

      The purpose of copyright protection is to increase the amount of works available to the public. Abandoned software can fade into obscurity and become lost forever. Congress not requiring an anual renewal of copyrights was a diservice to the public. Personally, I don't ca
  • by ArbiterOne (715233) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:14PM (#10103744) Homepage
    ... the server's /.ed already. Correction: The server has become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.
  • by Andreas(R) (448328) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:14PM (#10103745) Homepage
    The website seems to be Slashdotted, however, I've been following Linuxgames.com for a while. It's fine that the source code itself has been released to the public, but there's almost always some kind of "catch" which prevents the game from being successfull after the new release:

    Game data is not released under GPL. This is obvisly a mayor flaw, and will render the game unplayable. This includes Doom, Quake 1, 2 etc.

    The licence is too restricted. This includes Civ :CTP, where the license will not allow you to fork your own project. Therefore noone is willing to do anything with the new code.

    The release of the code happens too late, so the game isn't "interesting" any more. (Eg. Wolf 3d)

    Still, by all means, more GPL'ed games is a good thing!

    • I'm not too knowledgeble with this stuff, but if we have the Windows version of the game, Can you make the original game work on Linux by copying over the pak files and the textures, etc?
      • Yes. The Quake II source contain makefiles for Windows (Visual c++ project), GNU/Linux, Solaris, Irix and the abandoned Rhapsody. Fruitz of dojo [fruitz-of-dojo.de] has ported the game to os x.

        You are supposed to buy the game, or use your old copy to make use of the sourcecode. Another option is to create your own content.
    • by Minna Kirai (624281) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @04:28PM (#10104218)
      Game data is not released under GPL. This is obvisly a mayor flaw, and will render the game unplayable.

      Wrong. The game is still playable.

      You can download a free demo to acquire "game data", and play that with the GPLed executable.
      You can find a 3rd party who's made free "game data", and play with that.
      You can even pay for the original game itself, and use that "game data" with the GPLed executables. Valid old copies of Doom/Quake go for $1.99 each.

      GPLing is important for old software, because otherwise it'll tend to become unrunnable on future computers. But the game data has no such needs. If an artist were to hypothetically "upgrade it for newer machines", he may as well start over from scratch.

      PS. Note that one of the games on this list, Golgotha, is backwards from your claim: they released only the game data, and no working code (because they had none).
      • by Anonymous Coward
        Note that one of the games on this list, Golgotha, is backwards from your claim: they released only the game data, and no working code (because they had none).

        Star Control II (released as The Ur-Quan Masters due to trademark issues) was a similar case: in that case, the only source code the owners had left was from the 3DO port (remember the 3DO? Part of the same ill-fated generation as the CD-i and Sega's 32x). So people had to start by porting that back to standard hardware...
        • One interesting thing about that project is that the original 3DO files are not available. I sent them an email once asking if they would make that content available in its original form and they responded affirmatively - then it never happened. I'm still grateful for what has been released, but I have to wonder why the original stuff wasn't. If I could find someone with a 3DO devkit I'd love to be able to generate a freely redistributable Star Control (well, UQM) for 3DO.
    • by Zak3056 (69287) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @04:37PM (#10104265) Journal
      Game data is not released under GPL. This is obvisly a mayor flaw, and will render the game unplayable.

      Just because you're too cheap to buy the original game doesn't make this a "flaw" in source code releases.

      The "source code release" is just that--source code--not models, or art, or sounds, etc. Port the engine to whatever platform you want and use the data from the original game (that you bought) to play it as is--or better yet create your own damn game data and do something new.

      I think that's the biggest problem with the open source community (and I'm not talking about the people who actually do productive things like code and test, I'm talking about the other 90% of the community.) No matter what somebody gives you--for free, no less--people complain that they haven't been given enough.

      • Er, how can you call people who don't produce any open source code part of an open source community?

        Of *course* users of free software are whiny. Read a user forum for *any* software and you'll see whining!
  • by ltwally (313043) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:18PM (#10103770) Homepage Journal
    "...the site tracks releases for all major computer platforms (Windows, Mac OSX, Linux)..."

    Wow, how much of a geek do you have to be to include Linux as a "major computing platform" and leave out MS-DOS when the subject of said platform is gaming.

    I don't have any hard numbers to back this up... but I wouldn't be at all suprised if the number of MS-DOS games out-strips every other platform around.

    • Yeah, but any DOS game is so old that you could probably emulate it, so it could run in Linux or Mac OS X
    • by Anonymous Coward
      An interesting question. Obviously the games market has been increasing pretty much continuously, but there is the opposite effect that commercial game budgets have also grown steadily, decreasing the number of game productions. In the 8-bit era a single talented programmer could create a commercial game, and many did. If I had to bet, the platform with the largest number of published games would be one of Commodore 64, Commodore Amiga, or MS-DOS.
    • I usually think that slashdot is a relatively openminded crowd but TROLL? For stating the exceedingly obvious fact there are more DOS games than linux games?

      I can only hope that the metamods catch this...
  • Depending upon your blessing of knowledge on what "freedom" is defined, your thoughts may vary on truth that GPL compared to public domain is not free.

    Microsoft open-sourced Homeworld, but not under public domain and neither GPL.

    ID Software open-sourced and GPL'd the engines for Wolfenstein & Spear-of-Destiny, Doom1, Doom2, Quake1, Quake2, and no later than December 2004 to GPL Quake3; ID is a pioneer and don't belong on the list because it makes them look uninteresting.

    Among the above are the following software,

    Aliens vs Predator 1 (they have source, no portage)
    (Free)Space
    Rise of the Triad
    Duke Nukem 3D
    Descent 1
    Descent 2
    Jagged Alliance
    SiN
  • This would be a perfect time to test out Coral: http://www.liberatedgames.com.nyud.net:8090/gameli sting.php [nyud.net] ...but I fear it may be too late.
  • Timing? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by magefile (776388) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:38PM (#10103884)
    Wouldn't the timing have been better if this was yesterday (i.e., the UN-declared Software Freedom Day)?

    /me goes off to download Bungie's Aleph One yet again ...
  • Effect of release? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dj245 (732906) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:42PM (#10103906) Homepage
    If you didn't buy the game, you're less likely to have a manual. You're also less likely to take it seriously since you didn't have to pay for it. For an online game like Tribes 2, the effect of making it free (in an effort to promote Tribes: Veangeance) has been to introduce to the game servers a neverending supply of people who have absolutely no clue what they are doing and ask stupid questions.

    If they had read TFM or played the training missions, they wouldn't be so dumb. But they didn't buy the game, so they feel like they can jump right in and nothing bad can happen because if they get banned, oh well, they can just get another CD-key for free.

    • If they had read TFM or played the training missions, they wouldn't be so dumb. But they didn't buy the game, so they feel like they can jump right in and nothing bad can happen because if they get banned, oh well, they can just get another CD-key for free.

      Want to clue me in on how to get my free CD-key? Although they did give them out for free they stopped and haven't resumed. I've read that the problem is servers overloaded with players, but how big a problem is that? The worst fate for an online multipl

    • Tribes: Veangeance ->new game, new servers the problem you mentioned gone. So besides getting the new gamers to the game they can move the crowds from old game to the new game simply by suplying them with annoying newbies.
  • by jmcmunn (307798)
    I wish more of "you linux geeks" would check out the list of Linux games, then maybe you'd be too busy playing games to slashdot every link in the articles I am trying to read! :-)
  • Although it may be too late ...

    Coralized
    Crusader [nyud.net] writes "Two LinuxGames [nyud.net] staff members have launched Liberated Games [nyud.net], a site devoted to cataloguing full commercial titles that have been released for free by the developer or publisher, either with the full source code or without. The current list is available here [nyud.net]; the site tracks releases for all major computer platforms (Windows, Mac OSX, Linux), so feel free to submit [mailto] any missing games to the list."

    Freecached
    Crusader [freecache.org] writes "Two LinuxGames [freecache.org] staff members have launched Liberated Games [freecache.org], a site devoted to cataloguing full commercial titles that have been released for free by the developer or publisher, either with the full source code or without. The current list is available here [freecache.org]; the site tracks releases for all major computer platforms (Windows, Mac OSX, Linux), so feel free to submit [mailto] any missing games to the list."
  • Vantage Master (Score:5, Interesting)

    by david.given (6740) <dg AT cowlark DOT com> on Sunday August 29, 2004 @04:16PM (#10104159) Homepage Journal
    I've become rather fond of Vantage Master [falcom.co.jp], which someone pointed me at the last time this topic came up. It's a rather cool tactical wargame featuring two dueling wizards on a three-dimensional hex board. Your primary mode of attack is to summon various strange creatures.

    It's deceptively sophisticated --- put more simply, I suck. Each creature you summon has an associated element, and there's a strict order of precedence between the elements. Choosing your creatures to counter your opponent's is the key to the game. It's definitely made for wargame fans.

    Despite being quite dated, it's still a lot of fun. The graphics are old but well done and perfectly adequate; it's full of well-presented little animations whenever anything happens. It's got a lot of nice touches like the fact that when you create a character, it runs you through a short personality test to find the right one for you... and there's something going on with Tarot cards I haven't figured out yet.

    One of the attractions is the really, really bad translation from the Japanese. There's enough information there to actually play the game, but there's a weird air of surreality about the whole experience; particularly the cut scenes describing the ongoing plot. I've no idea what they're about --- my character seems to spend a lot of time talking to some woman with a dog, uttering the kind of cryptic runes you get when you try and speak Japanese without the right font installed!

    Oh, yeah, and the fact that the title theme song is a direct ripoff of Limahl's Neverending Story has to be a point in its favour.

    Alas, it's Windows only and doesn't run properly under Wine (it runs, but there's no sound and it's far too slow).

  • by Twench (580538) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @04:27PM (#10104216)
    How is this site different from http://www.gamehippo.com/ [gamehippo.com]? I would RTFWS (web site) if it weren't already brought to its knees by the hoards of slashdotters hoping to find their favorite game from 1983.
  • Abandonware (Score:5, Informative)

    by xmpcray (636203) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @04:34PM (#10104241)
    Tons of other abandonware games available here [xtcabandonware.com] .
  • I haven't kept up to date on what's happened in the emulator world, but I seem to remember that platforms like Vectrex were released to public domain.
  • Is it really necessary to specify that they're pimping out games with or without their full source code released? I mean, unless they're like specifically avoiding games that only have partial source code released...
  • And, how come the idea of liberating more software via the application of money not been considered?

    Wonder how much it would cost to get source code to some of the classic games (e.g. various games in the C&C series)
  • Liberated Games? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by LuYu (519260) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @07:42PM (#10105261) Homepage Journal

    I was just looking at the Liberated Games, and the games I looked at (Aliens v. Predator and Homeworld) both require a purchased version installed in Windows or Wine to function. Further, the "source code" is not the source for the games, it is the source for an addon that allows the game to play in Linux. Being that such addons are not written by the game developers but some third party Linux enthusiast, it is not surpising these bits of code are free, but the games themselves remain proprietary and completely closed source.

    So exactly what is "liberated" about this? Are these games "liberated" because you only have to install them in Windows and not play them in Windows? Or is the mere fact that one can play games in Linux a liberating experience in and of itself?

    I expected some restrictions, like licencing or some similar unpalatable requirements, but I did not expect this "liberated" software to still be closed source. I am disappointed.

    Perhaps the site should create a rating system for types of "liberated" if it is going to define "liberated" so liberally.

    • Re:Liberated Games? (Score:5, Informative)

      by CrusadeR (555) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @11:39PM (#10106332) Homepage
      Regarding AvP and Homeworld, those *are* full source trees that compile on Linux, not add-ons, that are based on full source releases from the original developers.

      You can read about the source code releases here:

      AvP: http://www.linuxgames.com/news/feedback.php?identi ferID=4471&action=flatview

      Homeworld: http://www.linuxgames.com/news/feedback.php?identi ferID=6359&action=flatview
  • Forgotten Game (Score:3, Informative)

    by Ynazar1 (750163) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @08:33PM (#10105495)
    I am very much submitting few games there. A good example would be Star Control 2, aka Ur-Quan Masters. http://sc2.sourceforge.net/ [sourceforge.net]
  • Failed effort (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Chris Siegler (3170) on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:29AM (#10107097)
    I remember when Golgotha released their code and game data I was sure that somebody would pick up the torch and create a nice game out of it but nothing significant ever came of it. Considering the amount of press it got in the Linux press I'm sure that people knew about it, so that wasn't an excuse. And although it was still very rough around the edges they did include all the needed code,maps,textures,audio to get a good running start. So why did it fail? From what I could tell somebody ported it to run with OpenGL and there was a lot of discussion on licensing terms, but no real usable results. Maybe the code just sucked, but there was something like 1 1/2 years of commercial effort in the game that should have gone to some good use! It would just be instructive to learn why it failed.

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