Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Inside a Star-Filled Sky (Public Domain For-Pay) + Video Review + Jason Rohrer on open source

Inside a Star-Filled Sky (IaSFS? InaStFiSk?) is a game. And art. [You want a game?=art discussion? Go to page 9! ;)] This art runs on OSX, Linux and Windows.

So you move around in procedurally generated mazes in real-time, shoot enemies, pick up stuff and change between levels. Sounds like.. GoblinHack so far (the graphics are softer though).

The mazes are people.
Or pixelated monsters for that matter. Or upgrades.
You control a thing inside another thing. the thing is a maze.

The game costs at least $1.75 because it's pay what you want + fees.

I was lucky to get Jason to answer two of my questions.

Q: Is IaSFS in the public domain?
Jason Rohrer: Yes, it's all in the public domain (which is why no license file is included).

Q: Why do you release your games as open source? Why does open source matter (to you)?
Jason Rohrer: I release all of my work as open source because there's no reason not to.  People mostly "hide" their source code out of fear, but I think that fear is unfounded.  In the game world, releasing source code is almost unheard of, except for decades-old abandonware projects.  Long ago, I used to harbor the romantic hope that some other coder would benefit from reusing or at least studying my source code.  But over 12 years of releasing all of my source code, that has happened only rarely.  Instead, the main benefit has come from making my work as portable and as long-lived as possible.  Binaries break eventually as platforms change, and they cannot be repaired.  A source distribution can survive and remain functional much longer.  My passion for open source has transitioned from idealistic to pragmatic over the years.

IMHO Jason is a very interesting guy to listen to [video search "Jason Rohrer"].

About public domain: There is no PD statement in Jason's code as far as I can tell but I was told via email that it is PD. UPDATE: fortify dependency has been removed. The game code contains (depends on?) the non-free fortify.

I could upload the game and share the link. It'd be legal. I would feel guilty though. So instead I offer you my help at buying the game if you can't use the payment method available. If you can transfer to a German bank account or are located in/near Berlin, Germany, contact me and I'll buy the game for you if you somehow give me the money you want to pay.

I guess we need screens...
Enjoy! It's from the official gallery!

I guess a video can't hurt (I'm probably wrong)...

Enjoy the video! (F-Word Warning!) +1 and I commented it! (Here's another by me, without comments but boring gameplay)
If you have problems with video/flash/youtube... youtube-dl!

After making the video, I realized that playing on higher (lower?) levels (levels?) is amazing fun and reminds me of Meritous. Meritous is a hard punisher though. In (In a) Star-Filled Sky is is awesome getting destroyed in all these amazing ways just to get destroyed in even more amazing ways few seconds afterwards and sometimes even get to destroy something in amazing ways by chance or even skill! Awesome.

I really need to hear people's opinion about 1. this game 2. this payment model.

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