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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 FiReaNGeL (312636) <fireang3l@hRABBI ... minus herbivore> 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!
  • 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.

  • 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..
  • 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.

  • 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).
  • 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.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:10PM (#10103719)
    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...."

    Those stupid windows users.
  • Re:Unreal Tournament (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:11PM (#10103724)
    It's not the full source code.
  • by rsilvergun (571051) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:15PM (#10103754)
    for the art/levels? I don't think that was released for free distribution.
  • by adamwright (536224) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:18PM (#10103771) Homepage
    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.
  • 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
  • Re:nice Compilation (Score:5, Informative)

    by arose (644256) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:27PM (#10103818)
    It seems you haven't heard about The Linux Game Tome [happypenguin.org].
  • Re:nice Compilation (Score:4, Informative)

    by Time Doctor (79352) <zjs@zacharyjackslater.com> on Sunday August 29, 2004 @03:37PM (#10103881) Homepage Journal
    Perhaps you really want The Linux Game List [icculus.org]?
  • 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."
  • 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.
  • 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).
  • Abandonware (Score:5, Informative)

    by xmpcray (636203) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @04:34PM (#10104241)
    Tons of other abandonware games available here [xtcabandonware.com] .
  • by Minna Kirai (624281) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @04:34PM (#10104245)
    were at one point for commercial sale.

    Wrong. Golgotha and Wolfenstein-Enemy-Territory are on the list, and they were never for sale.

    (However, both of those were planned for sale at some point)
  • 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 on Sunday August 29, 2004 @07:27PM (#10105191)
    ...the best liberated game of all, Star Control 2 [sourceforge.net]? Not only has the sourcecode been GPL'ed, but the content is freely available as well.
  • by Malfeis333 (415288) on Sunday August 29, 2004 @07:39PM (#10105248)
    Actually, HotU is rather dilligent about enforcing it's policy of not offering games that are still for sale. They have removed all games currently held under copyright by the IDSA, to boot. While it tiptoes on the border of illegality, it provides a service for finding games that have slipped through the cracks over the years. If someone wants to enforce their IP, they need only contact the owner and the link disappears, replaced by a link to stores selling the title.

    Unlike the warez sites out there, they really do try to be honest. Just try and request a game on their forum and see what happens if you don't believe me. :)

    Quoted:

    "Home of the Underdogs is a non-profit site dedicated to the preservation and promotion of underrated PC games (and a few non-PC games) of all ages: good games that deserve a second chance after dismal sales or critical reviews that we feel are unwarranted. By nature, our criteria for choosing games to be honored here are subjective. However, we believe that our collective experience (many of us started gaming in late 1970s) allows us to be confident of our choices: we've played many of the best and worst games ever made. Therefore, we believe that our "Top Dog" tag signifies a truly remarkable classic, while at the other end of the spectrum our "Real Dog" tag signifies marginal underdogs we think you really should avoid (most of them are here only because a number of visitors pleaded us for them, anyway [EG]).

    Although the site is non-profit in that we will never charge anyone for anything, we do need to pay hefty server costs every month to ensure decent download and access speeds. To that end, we unfortunately need to place banners on the site to cover these costs. These banners are mostly pay-per-impression, so you don't need to click on them (although we'd appreciate any clicks as they lead to higher payout rates and better ad campaigns). We are sorry for this inconvenience, and we thank you for your support.

    Home of the Underdogs, while not an abandonware site per se (since our aim is to pay tribute to all underdogs, both new and old), supports the abandonware idea. We believe that providing games that have been abandoned by their publishers, while technically illegal, is a valuable service to the gaming community because these games are in danger of disappearing into obscurity, and their copyright holders no longer derive any revenues from them. For more information on our stance on abandonware, please read this section of our FAQ.

    One of the larger goals behind Home of the Underdogs is to make it a friendly and dynamic community of classic game collectors, oldies lovers, game designers, and anyone else interested in the history of PC computer games; to be a place for sharing nostalgia, ideas, and information on underrated games. To this end, everyone is welcome to interact with the site via the "Community" subsection in the left-hand menu bar, where you can sign our Guestbook, join in various discussions in our Forum, or contribute to the site.

    We also belong to the group of "die-hard" gamers who long for the golden days of PC gaming, when games were more original and fun to play than today's hordes of mundane, "me-too" titles marketed by businessmen who abhors risking the corporate purse strings on innovative but unproven titles. We long for the days when designers were treated as "artistes" of their medium, entrepreneurial pioneers who worked without the fears of not meeting a Christmas deadline or making games that aren't compatible with 3D cards. We hope that games featured on this site will help inspired a new generation of game designers to reach back into the past and rediscover what great games are truly made of. To that end, we are honored to host the Scratchware Manifesto, a statement of purpose written by several designers who are dismayed with the state of today's gaming industry. We encourage everyone to read it and spread the word around :) "
  • 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]
  • by Gilesx (525831) * <gil@NOSpaM.foresightlinux.com> on Sunday August 29, 2004 @08:48PM (#10105554) Homepage
    Alternative Coralized link: Herehttp://www.liberatedgames.com.nyud.net:8090/ga melisting.php
  • 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.
  • 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.)
  • 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

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