Friday, May 18, 2007

SoulFu now open source

The author of SoulFu now provides the source with the installer. Download the latest version (Windows only) and install it and there is the source code contained in the installation. That gives me hope of a future version of the game for Linux. :-)

The license is a little funny though - it is not a standard open source license and basically forbids a few things that you should read about if you are interested in modifying the source.

There's an interesting article on "What makes a good Civ game" (pages 1 2 3 4). Most of it is just common sense but it would be interesting to analyse what parts of it are applicable to FreeCiv. The article is nothing new (circa 2003) but I enjoyed reading it anyway.

I've been searching for more information on a 3D version of Exult. It exists, but in terms of the source and/or a relevant project page (with something more than a description). The only decent information I can find is in a 2 year old locked forum thread, which is a shame because it looks like a really interesting addition to the Exult scene and could attract a whole new generation of players. Sadly now it seems inactive.

There are many game ideas that never get realised, but given the hobbyist nature of open source [i.e. not bottom line driven] we are blessed with a blank canvas from which to start with and you can paint it however you like.

I would love to see a game inspired by Castles. In this old classic you got to build up a castle, selecting the height of the walls, and periodically you would get attacked by invading forces so you would place your defenders and watch the battle unfold. The end goal, of course, was to prevent your castle being conquered. For those with a good memory, this is the second time I've mentioned it.

So, what other games are missing from the scene? What ideas - new or old - are realistic enough to be tackled yet original enough to stand out? Comment here or in the forums with any ideas. :-)


  1. Ask and you will receive! The code has already been ported to Linux! This is exciting news, but, as we mentioned last week on Linux Gaming World, the license is under question. SoulFu shouldn't be considered Open Source until Aaron decides on another GPL or OSI-recognized license.

  2. noIse4:42 am

    I had been thinking that a game similar to either Ico, or Shadow of the Colossus would be a good fit for a FOSS game. They are basically 3d puzzle games; with Ico being essentially a maze, and the Colossi are a type of puzzle, as to how you can get their weaknesses exposed/exploited. In this way, the gameplay is simple enough to be done and balanced enough to play rather quickly; thus it would lead to a release-early release-often mindset.

    The other main attribute of these games which should be an area of focus, is the atmosphere. They are characterized by massive, mysterious environments. This would require skilled artists, something which seems lacking in most FOSS games, no offense. Other than that, I think it could be quite open to alteration.

  3. cb400f9:42 am

    I really miss a nice 2d shooter, like Dogs of War that I played on Amiga. It seems all the 2d shoot 'em up games available for GNU/Linux are space shooters.

    Also a Sensible World of Soccer (Amiga version) would be great.

    You know digital usb-joysticks that are clones of the old Competition Pro joysticks for C64, Amiga, Atari etc. are available and work well under Linux - I have a couple that I use with UAE and Vice.

  4. One 2D shooter that I really enjoyed is BOFH: Servers Under Siege. I can't find the original website anymore, but the link should get you to the source code + data. It uses SDL and is not so hard to build on Linux. As far as I remember, there were some issues with case-sensitiveness in file names and other things when I built it for Linux, but "porting" it was almost trivial and was done in a matter of minutes.

    The game is difficult, but once you get the hang of it, it's plenty of fun. And although the goal is to disarm bombs before the time runs out, I find it much more entertaining to just eliminate as many terrorists as possible before I die.

    Also check out C-DOGS

  5. You can find a playable Version of Exult3D on

  6. Anonymous2:35 pm

    SoulFu ain't open source as in open source definition. That license text is silly. Be careful touching that code:)


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