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FOSS RTS Game Glest Gets Revival — Enter Mega-Glest

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the strategic-fork dept.

Real Time Strategy (Games) 103

Softhaus writes "Many readers here are likely familiar with the popular, open source RTS game Glest, which comes packaged with nearly every Linux distro. Unfortunately, all development ceased on the original game back in 2008, disappointing many around the world. During the past year, a new fork (called Mega-Glest) has endeavored to take this great game and bring it to the masses. This new fork can provide hours of fun at your next LAN party, as it supports up to eight players in real-time (with or without CPU AI players), and the newly released v3.3.5 offers Internet play via a master server lobby. Cross-platform network play is now a reality, which could help bridge the gap between Linux and Windows users in a cohesive manner. One of the best features of Mega-Glest (and indeed Glest itself) is the ease with which new 'factions' and mods may be produced via a Map editor, model viewer, Blender plugins, XML files describing your unit traits, particles, weapons, and LUA scripting for scenarios and AI. Full installers for Windows, Linux 32-bit and 64-bit are available on SourceForge, promising hours of fun. But one warning: the game can become highly addictive. You can provide feedback for the game through the official forums."

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awesome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33225844)

gonna get my nerd on

Re:awesome! (5, Informative)

Ruede (824831) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226212)

total annihilation spring > that game
also open source and windows/linux.......

http://springrts.com/ [springrts.com]

Re:awesome! (1)

pinkushun (1467193) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226380)

Wow, uber thanks for this link!

Re:awesome! (0)

.Bruce Perens (150539) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226948)

The problem I've had with Spring is that it assumes you've played TA, which I haven't. The game is completely overwhelming and lacks a beginner's guide or tutorial. As with many FOSS games, the documentation sucks. Granted, it's been a while since I looked, and hopefully things have improved.

Re:awesome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33227494)

As with many FOSS games, the documentation sucks.

As with all modern games, the documentation is non-existent. FTFY

Re:awesome! (1)

doti (966971) | more than 3 years ago | (#33229442)

TA (which spring is a remake of) is to chess what all other RTS are to checkers.

Re:awesome! (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 3 years ago | (#33231126)

The problem is that the base package is just the engine, no game content is included and you have to download that separately (it doesn't support ripping TA from the original CDs either). The Kernel Panic installer gives you a working game, maps and singleplayer mode, you can still install other content later.

Re:awesome! (2, Informative)

CAIMLAS (41445) | more than 3 years ago | (#33233532)

Thank you, you just ruined my weekend. I'll likely be sucked into playing that w/ a friend...

Likewise, there's Warzone 2100 [wz2100.net] , which I thought was quite a bit like TA (with acknowledge for the fact that I maybe spent 20 minutes playing the original, 5 years after it came out, and got my ass swiftly handed to me by the computer.) I've sunk many an hour into this one.

There so many enjoyable, well-one multiplayer games for Linux (and open source in general) I've not had the desire to pay for a game in some time/with any significant frequency. (Note, I fall in the 5-hours-or-fewer per week demographic by quite a bit.)

That said, Glest kinda sucks. It's boring and slow paced, even when you speed up the game speed. The gameplay does not feel fluid, either, even when run on a higher end system. It's like the Warcraft (original) of Open Source RTS: the sides are (For all intents and purposes) identical, and the gameplay is painfully simple.

Just in time! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33225846)

I was almost ready to buy Starcraft 2, but now I see this amazing game!

Re:Just in time! (5, Insightful)

MachDelta (704883) | more than 3 years ago | (#33225918)

Good idea. I was actually kind of disappointed with SC2. They basically took 10 years to do a graphics overhaul and... well that's about it. Oh and they also managed to ruin Bnet, remove LAN play, and make it so you can never ever sell the game. Otherwise it's pretty much the same game from 1998.

My only saving grace is that I traded in 3 old games and got it for 'free'. Meh.

Re:Just in time! (1)

aliquis (678370) | more than 3 years ago | (#33225972)

Sure about the selling part? I doubt it.

Also I assume eventually the extensions to the single player game will bring more to multiplayer game to? Even though one can play all three races now. Or?

And if they changed much at all lots of people would had complained.

Doubt they have made bnet worse either but then I haven't played it. I can understand if it matches players poorly atm.

Re:Just in time! (1)

SkunkPussy (85271) | more than 3 years ago | (#33225998)

"I haven't played it" so guess what you don't know!

they have dropped various features from bnet like chat rooms etc, and people complain about the maphosting problems.

it matches players fairly well.

Re:Just in time! (5, Informative)

Vaphell (1489021) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226084)

as a former blizzard fanboy who loved every single game they released in last 15 years (maybe except wow) let me say this:
sc2 is bad - everything but core multiplayer pretty much sucks
- you are 'encouraged' to be always online, you have to deal with authorizations to even dream about playing offline on some shitty guest account (your progress on your account and on guest are separate so you'd have to start campaign from scratch)
- no LAN
- regions with no possibility to play across borders (unless you drop another $60 for the other region's version)
- only 1 account (no separate stats or single player progress for different people using it, in fact that $60 is not per game copy, but per account, you are not allowed to share)
- pathetic ways of communication (no easy to use and very social at their core chat channels, instead you get poor man's instant messenger which makes it total pita to run a clan or organize anything bigger that 2v2)
- no clan/tournament support
- creators of custom maps pretty much hand the rights to blizzard and map distribution is solely through battle.net, pretty much no option to have custom maps on disk and play them offline, not to mention ridiculous restrictions (max 5 maps, total 20MB)
- hard to understand, intransparent ladder with leagues and thousands of divisions that doesn't show anything even remotely resembling global ranks so players can feel good about themselves
- horrible custom maps - maps are sorted by popularity and filled automatically - obscure maps are never played and players have no control over the rules and players joining
- for sc1 lore nerds - poor story, an awful lot of retcons, completely redesigned personalities of core characters, large amounts of meaningless filler and everything you know and love going down the shitter. Only technical side to the campaign and missions themselves are good, everything else is incoherent, self-contradictory and cringeworthy. Watered down story means you need to pay 3times to get similar amount of action (story-wise) you got from sc1 vanilla alone.

doesn't sound like blizzard of old, eh?

read this rather blizzard-centric blog devoted to games for in depth analysis of the current state of affairs in blizzard
http://www.the-ghetto.org/ [the-ghetto.org]

Re:Just in time! (2, Interesting)

delinear (991444) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226660)

I hadn't planned on playing SC2 but having read the above (relating to battlenet and multiplayer in general as well as the authentication DRM nonsense) I'm starting to worry about what they'll do to Diablo 3...

Re:Just in time! (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 3 years ago | (#33229072)

I like single-player Torchlight (well worth the $5 I paid on Steam for it, I'd even pay $10-$15). They're apparently working on a multiplayer Torchlight II. Why even worry about Diablo?

Re:Just in time! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33230654)

I like single-player Torchlight (well worth the $5 I paid on Steam for it, I'd even pay $10-$15). They're apparently working on a multiplayer Torchlight II. Why even worry about Diablo?

Specifically they are working on Torchlight 2 [wikipedia.org] and a Torchlight MMO [wikipedia.org] that they will be working on after 2. I believe there was a story about it on /. previously. I hope they keep the same fun the first one has. Shouldn't be a problem, since they aren't Blizzard.

Re:Just in time! (1)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 3 years ago | (#33236888)

Before I had Internet Diablo II and Starcraft were all I really had to do for fun. Starcraft II already seems to be disappointing all but the really hardcore multiplayer folks. I'm with you on the worries about Diablo III.

You have to wonder how much of this decision is Blizzard and how much of it is Vivendi and Activision.

Re:Just in time! (2, Interesting)

dskzero (960168) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227118)

I'm really surprised at the ammount of hate SC2 has received and the lack of people defending it. It might be something with people liking it a lot, though, and all the points you raise are generally very subjective. I do agree with the lack of region inter-play and the lack of LAN support, the rest aren't really all that important to me.

Re:Just in time! (1)

Monchanger (637670) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227958)

the lack of people defending it

But we did! On the last dozen or so times SC2 has come up, and when a long list of grievances to King Morhaime wasn't completely off-topic. It's been done to death.

We're bored of confronting the haters who have nothing better to do than be bitter about their difference of opinion and disappointment that life isn't perfect. We've moved on and keep enjoying the game.

Re:Just in time! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33229068)

Exactly, you wouldn't want to play with these people, so why try to argue for the game?

I've personally only played trial, (waiting for $50 price point), and its quite a bit of fun. Some MP and some SP. I wish I'd have known that medics were out in MP the first time I launched Terran though :P

Re:Just in time! (2, Insightful)

Cinder6 (894572) | more than 3 years ago | (#33228886)

The people who like the game are too busy enjoying it to even read the hater comments.

Re:Just in time! (1)

Raenex (947668) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227194)

you are 'encouraged' to be always online, you have to deal with authorizations to even dream about playing offline on some shitty guest account (your progress on your account and on guest are separate so you'd have to start campaign from scratch)

This doesn't appear to be true. From what I can tell by reading this thread [battle.net] , you are required to authenticate online initially and every 30 days after that. It appears there is/was a bug (they say they have a patch, but I don't know if it is released yet) that if your machine changes it's hostname when offline, the authentication doesn't stick.

Re:Just in time! (3, Interesting)

Rewind (138843) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227826)

your progress on your account and on guest are separate so you'd have to start campaign from scratch

This isn't true. You can go in there and copy saves over just like you can on SC1. They are in a folder in Documents by default. It contains a Save subfolder.

- only 1 account (no separate stats or single player progress for different people using it, in fact that $60 is not per game copy, but per account, you are not allowed to share)

The stats part is true, however the single player progress bit is not. You can have more than one. Just hit new campaign.

- pathetic ways of communication (no easy to use and very social at their core chat channels, instead you get poor man's instant messenger which makes it total pita to run a clan or organize anything bigger that 2v2)

Social chat channels? They were just bots spamming for clans or (if some D1 or D2 was involved) item selling sites... The more private channels were useful for sure, but they have a party system for that now. Also how is a 3v a pita? Works just fine for me... Now a clan you might be spot on about, I wouldn't know.

- creators of custom maps pretty much hand the rights to blizzard and map distribution is solely through battle.net, pretty much no option to have custom maps on disk and play them offline, not to mention ridiculous restrictions (max 5 maps, total 20MB)

This also isn't true. You can put maps in a map folder and play them just like in SC. And you can load them for single player use or fire up the editor and launch them from there.

- hard to understand, intransparent ladder with leagues and thousands of divisions that doesn't show anything even remotely resembling global ranks so players can feel good about themselves

Eh hopefully they add this for you. I think it is a valid request even if I am not interested in it personally. However I doubt the vast majority of players need "global ranks" to "feel good about themselves" so it probably wasn't given priority over making leagues that work well for prompt and equal matchmaking.

maps are sorted by popularity and filled automatically - obscure maps are never played and players have no control over the rules and players joining

Huh? You can invite who you want and pick the map you want and change rule options.

Watered down story means you need to pay 3times to get similar amount of action (story-wise) you got from sc1 vanilla alone.

This one is just kind of ridiculous. What POSSIBLE measurement do you use to get that figure? Did it take you 30 minutes to read the little quick story panels in SC1 or something? Might want to take off those rose-tinted glasses and actually go review the Story presented in vanilla StarCraft. It is fine that you don't like SC2. You made some good points (no real LAN play is sad, though you can still play over LAN provided you have internet to auth there. and the logging in every time can be annoying. can't sell the game etc) but some of that was distorted to say the least. Personally I rather enjoyed SC2. If I had to guess I would say a good number of people ragging on StarCraft II never played it. Hence comments that just aren't true or are exaggerated like some of the stuff you had or "graphics overhaul is all it is".

Re:Just in time! (1)

Vaphell (1489021) | more than 3 years ago | (#33229330)

The stats part is true, however the single player progress bit is not. You can have more than one. Just hit new campaign.

how does that work when few people want to play alternately? does the new campaign destroy the old one or you get to reload from saves? Either way, inconvenient.

Social chat channels? They were just bots spamming for clans or (if some D1 or D2 was involved) item selling sites... The more private channels were useful for sure, but they have a party system for that now. Also how is a 3v a pita? Works just fine for me... Now a clan you might be spot on about, I wouldn't know.

they were spammed because it was trivial to create bunch of accounts, also blizzard never really cared about law and order on battle.net - after all when the copies are sold, money was made, why bother to police their network service. Now single account costs 60 bucks, i don't think many would try to spam and risk permaban.
Another thing is you could always create your own channel, nobody forced you to sit in the public one. Now you don't get any of that, but as i said - try to organize anything with that pathetic IM.

This also isn't true. You can put maps in a map folder and play them just like in SC. And you can load them for single player use or fire up the editor and launch them from there.

i stand corrected. still if i am not mistaken you don't get to store maps downloaded from battle.net permanently, so you have to get them manually from dedicated sites. And running maps from editor is not what i would call a convenience more like 'jumping through the hoops'

Eh hopefully they add this for you. I think it is a valid request even if I am not interested in it personally. However I doubt the vast majority of players need "global ranks" to "feel good about themselves" so it probably wasn't given priority over making leagues that work well for prompt and equal matchmaking.

as if database cared how it presents its data. Majority of players probably don't need it, good for them but there are some that do - all the guys who play competitively. There is no coherent info who is where on the ladder, even for diamond and platinum leagues where it really counts - these guys couldn't care less about what is their position among 100 hundred random people, they want to know the truth.

This one is just kind of ridiculous. What POSSIBLE measurement do you use to get that figure? Did it take you 30 minutes to read the little quick story panels in SC1 or something? Might want to take off those rose-tinted glasses and actually go review the Story presented in vanilla StarCraft. It is fine that you don't like SC2. You made some good points (no real LAN play is sad, though you can still play over LAN provided you have internet to auth there. and the logging in every time can be annoying. can't sell the game etc) but some of that was distorted to say the least. Personally I rather enjoyed SC2. If I had to guess I would say a good number of people ragging on StarCraft II never played it. Hence comments that just aren't true or are exaggerated like some of the stuff you had or "graphics overhaul is all it is".

what? i played both and it's not like i played sc1 once 12 years ago and only have fond memories - i repeated sc1 like 5 times and i enjoyed it every single time despite its aging mechanics. I could go very deep into detail how much sc2 story sucks but i don't think you care much. Find any of 10-20 page long threads in the single player section of blizzard forums, you'll get all the info you need. The fact is that there was more substance story-wise in 10 terran missions in sc1 (which also had to introduce absolutely green players to the game) than in almost 30 in sc2 where for the half of the game you run after some artifacts with no other purpose but to get monies. Maybe you don't agree - but still proper comparison is full SC vanilla (30missions) to SC2:WoL (25-29) and here SC1 wins hands down.
Both SC1 and BW had kickass ending, SC2 has deus ex machina in action which requires half an hour of sitting at 1 base to fire... and then you get cheesy cinematic. Amount of retcons and plotholes in SC2 is staggering.

Re:Just in time! (1)

Rewind (138843) | more than 3 years ago | (#33235184)

how does that work when few people want to play alternately? does the new campaign destroy the old one or you get to reload from saves? Either way, inconvenient.

You can still reload your old saves, they don't go anywhere. At least the local copies. I am not too sure what the 'cloud' saving does. Local copies save though.

they were spammed because it was trivial to create bunch of accounts, also blizzard never really cared about law and order on battle.net - after all when the copies are sold, money was made, why bother to police their network service. Now single account costs 60 bucks, i don't think many would try to spam and risk permaban. Another thing is you could always create your own channel, nobody forced you to sit in the public one. Now you don't get any of that, but as i said - try to organize anything with that pathetic IM.

Well that was (later) true of the original. They stopped chat gateways a while back I think. Now it is $60 sure, but I would guess that was done for later? I dunno. I didn't have any issues with it. What exactly don't you like about the chat and party system? I mostly use voice chat on it with my friends and we found it useful enough to not hop in Vent.

i stand corrected. still if i am not mistaken you don't get to store maps downloaded from battle.net permanently, so you have to get them manually from dedicated sites. And running maps from editor is not what i would call a convenience more like 'jumping through the hoops'

I am not sure about B.net downloaded maps. I haven't got one that way yet. But either way the old SC style is the same. Thats just something you have to deal with if you go though the B.net system which is new and optional as far as I can tell. I would have to play more than the 2 custom maps I downloaded and tried to know for sure. Hasn't been an issue for me so far though. I mean thats how most people got maps in SC1 and that seemed to work out ok.

as if database cared how it presents its data. Majority of players probably don't need it, good for them but there are some that do - all the guys who play competitively. There is no coherent info who is where on the ladder, even for diamond and platinum leagues where it really counts - these guys couldn't care less about what is their position among 100 hundred random people, they want to know the truth.

Like I said, I hope they add that for you. I didn't mean for that to sound condescending or anything. I just didn't convey that part well I guess. Blizzard has an epic history of supporting games so it could come out. I mean they were adding replays and league features into SC1 how long after release?

what? i played both and it's not like i played sc1 once 12 years ago and only have fond memories - i repeated sc1 like 5 times and i enjoyed it every single time despite its aging mechanics. I could go very deep into detail how much sc2 story sucks but i don't think you care much. Find any of 10-20 page long threads in the single player section of blizzard forums, you'll get all the info you need. The fact is that there was more substance story-wise in 10 terran missions in sc1 (which also had to introduce absolutely green players to the game) than in almost 30 in sc2 where for the half of the game you run after some artifacts with no other purpose but to get monies. Maybe you don't agree - but still proper comparison is full SC vanilla (30missions) to SC2:WoL (25-29) and here SC1 wins hands down. Both SC1 and BW had kickass ending, SC2 has deus ex machina in action which requires half an hour of sitting at 1 base to fire... and then you get cheesy cinematic. Amount of retcons and plotholes in SC2 is staggering.

I guess we were discussing different things. I took what you said to mean that you thought 1/3 of the amount of story material was in 2 that was in 1. I thought that was ridiculous because SC1 just had CG, text blurbs, and the little visual boxes with voice. SC2 had all of that along with the Wing Commanderish 'click on and "chat" with' or whatever stuff. Way more material there. Now if you didn't like it, thats an opinion thing. As far as retcon, didn't really bother me. If the game had come out 4 or even 5 years after the original it might have, but if it is an enjoyable game story I don't mind it having some changes 12 years on. You are allowed to change your overall story vision over that many years I think :p Again just an opinion.

As for the missions I think there was still more there. Sure it was a few less in numbers, but they were more difficult with the new settings. I remember the original SC being pretty easy. This time around you could tweak the difficulty level much more so that added a lot more to the missions for me. Also the achievements and challenges do add something (even if it is minimal) to do beyond the raw missions and waitings for custom content.

I didn't really see any plotholes (by video game standards) and I didn't think the ending was deus ex machina at all. If anything my complaint there was I felt it was spelled out wayyy early and it was just "Well I wonder if that is going to happen in this one or in the next Zerg expansion". I don't want to post any spoilers, but between Tygus looking at the video logs and Raynor's chats with the Specter guy I though the ending was foretold very early. If anything I felt I saw that coming too early, not it was something out of nowhere to just end the story.

Re:Just in time! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33227916)

I'm more than a little irritated at the one shot to name your "character". In the excitement that first night to get playing I misread what it said, I didn't realize that would be my Battle.net name. I thought it was just like Dawn of War II and I'd be naming my commander that. Some of your other points though are not true from what I can tell:

1) There is tournament support, the caveat being its controlled by Blizzard. So no fun or variety of leagues. This is lame I'll agree, but its not the same as there not being tournaments at all.

2) The ladder is very easy to understand, its a point based system based off the total scores for your match. I've mixed feelings of the multitude of divisions. I'm not a "pro" gamer anymore, but I still kinda feel there should be a master division (say the top slot of every platinum division?). I just wish I knew how the divisions were, well, divided! Are they regional? It'd be good to know.

3) The story was not bad. I thought it was pretty good myself. It's continuing loose ends that were left in SC and SC:BW. There's no retcons that I can tell (I'm actually replaying the original campaigns because I can hardly believe Blizzard *didn't* retcon something) and the personalities were spot on I thought. Given that time changes people, no they're not exactly as they were in the original. Raynor's more bitter. Kerrigan is still Kerrigan, and Mensk is still an evil bastard. Zeratul is still awesome and all Protoss-y.

I thought some of the side mission story lines got drawn out a bit but they weren't terrible.

And what is with people saying "its SC with new skins" constantly? Multiplayer plays completely different. There's more raiding/skirmishing and map control than turtling and LOLCARRIER tactics. You actually have to have mixed units. There are more hard counters. You can't just mass max supply of X unit and go try and walk the map. Also the game plays at a faster pace. Rarely do I even get to max supply and the games are getting shorter the higher in division rank I go. Battles are more decisive. Personally I'm finding the game incredibly better than the original.

The single player missions were more clever too. In SC and SC:BW you pretty much just sit there building up a huge army (again just like in multiplayer) then go walk the map. In SC2 single player you are again required to send out patrols. I'm talking like 12 guys to go test the enemy lines, or secure some objectives. Sure, there are points when you need larger forces. Usually for that final go. But again, the game is incredibly more mature and forces you into more advanced tactical and strategical thinking.

Hell, even though most of their achievements are useless as per Blizzard norm, there are quite a few that are very difficult. You actually feel you acomplished something when you've gotten it.

I loved SC when it first came out. It was the standard I rated other RTS games for a long time. SC2's been a long time coming and its the first game in 6 years I haven't regretted paying full price for. I just hope they come out with the rest of them soon! I want to continue the single player storyline and see how the Zerg and Protoss campaigns go.

I just wish Battle.net 2.0 was slightly different

Re:Just in time! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33228396)

- pathetic ways of communication (no easy to use and very social at their core chat channels, instead you get poor man's instant messenger which makes it total pita to run a clan or organize anything bigger that 2v2)

You can create a "party" of up to at least 4 (I haven't tried more than that) and join/create games as a group and it also creates a chatroom for the party automatically.

- no clan/tournament support

If it's any consolation, they've specifically stated this feature is going to be added in a future patch.

- hard to understand, intransparent ladder with leagues and thousands of divisions that doesn't show anything even remotely resembling global ranks so players can feel good about themselves

Global rankings really don't serve any purpose other than for the players near the top. If you're ranked 10,584 and you see someone ranked 10,603, do you really think the system has the kind of granularity required to actually say you're 20 ranks better than that person? The new system can actually give context and meaning to your rank. A "bronze player" is almost always going to be within a certain skill level, as will a "diamond player". After that, you can know that you're the best in your division, but realistically, the more people you try to add to the system the less accurate it's going to be.

- horrible custom maps - maps are sorted by popularity and filled automatically - obscure maps are never played and players have no control over the rules and players joining

It sounds to me like you've only ever tried to join a custom game and not create one. You can create your own game, set the rules, number of players, etc. just fine. You can also invite friends, and they can suggest their friends for you to invite or add AI players. Then, if you need more players, you can set the game to be listed and the rules are locked in place. The issue is that each set of rules is considered its own "game" by the custom game browser, thus if it's not a popular set of rules it will be near the bottom of the browser by popularity. They really just need some light text searching based on map name or game type, and then map authors need to stick to consistent game type naming. But it's a hell of a lot better than SC1's system, where all you had to go on was the name the game creator put up.

- for sc1 lore nerds - poor story, an awful lot of retcons, completely redesigned personalities of core characters, large amounts of meaningless filler and everything you know and love going down the shitter. Only technical side to the campaign and missions themselves are good, everything else is incoherent, self-contradictory and cringeworthy. Watered down story means you need to pay 3times to get similar amount of action (story-wise) you got from sc1 vanilla alone.

The game is 26 maps, with cut scenes between every map (game engine, not pre-rendered FMV, but they still look pretty good), compared to SC1 which had something like 23 maps spread between 3 races and little 10-frame-animation talking heads between them. Your argument about "less story" in this situation lies somewhere between disingenuous and being blinded by nostalgia. There are at least 4 subplots I can think of off the top of my head, each of which comprise about 3-5 maps. If you look at it that way, the only big difference between this game and SC1 is that all but one subplot you can only play as Terran.

The story is cheesey on purpose. They have a fucking band made of the company's creators that plays songs like "Terran Up the Night" and "I Am Murloc", do you really think Blizzard takes its own stories seriously?

Re:Just in time! (5, Informative)

MachDelta (704883) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226250)

I wish I were kidding. Section 7 of the EULA flat out states that you can never "sublicense or transfer" the game to any person or entity. The funny (and sad) part is it even goes on to say that *IF* a court overturns that little nugget, then you agree to call Blizzard customer service so that they can charge you a "processing/handling fee" just so you can sell the game.

It's one hell of a nasty EULA. :\

Re:Just in time! (5, Informative)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227526)

Over here in the UK, we have the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contract regulations. I'm pretty sure that "You have to call us and pay us so you can resell this game you bought" would fall foul of it. It's a question of whether Blizzard would turn up to small claims court when you sue for the "processing fee" to be waived.

Re:Just in time! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33228026)

I wish I were kidding. Section 7 of the EULA flat out states that you can never "sublicense or transfer" the game to any person or entity. The funny (and sad) part is it even goes on to say that *IF* a court overturns that little nugget, then you agree to call Blizzard customer service so that they can charge you a "processing/handling fee" just so you can sell the game.

It's one hell of a nasty EULA. :\

I'm no lawyer but If the first sale doctrine is valid, then that part section 7 of the EULA is simply nullified.

Re:Just in time! (2, Interesting)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 3 years ago | (#33228228)

And if they changed much at all lots of people would had complained.

Doubt they have made bnet worse either but then I haven't played it.

People ARE complaining - look at this thread you started!

Their DRM structure is about as Draconian as Ubisoft's new titles. I had purchased it while my desktop was at my parents house, I installed it and started the campaign on it. Now I moved into my new place last week - and I won't get any internet installed until tomorrow. When I try to play offline - under my account or guest mode - it says I need to authenticate my client and have 1 character created on my account.

Well - I did some searching around - What does it mean by "Authenticate my client?" Enter my CD key into my Bnet account. I did that. I created a character, thats how I started the campaign. Through some shitty DRM scheme, it is designed to delete the offline info of your account every 30 days so you'll need a need a net connection every once in a while to keep playing. (I've seen A TON of soldiers complaining about this. They bought the game to play overseas, but its not going to work for them). Also - until the most recent patch they released, the DRM bugged out and deleted that offline info prior to the 30 days, in fact, almost instantly. If you have a connection, you wouldn't notice, but pretty much everyone who activated it online, then went to try it offline - had issues starting, even in guest mode.

Honestly - the little bits that I've seen have suggested that its a little bit of a let down. They have stripped away some of the things that made the first SC so appealing, from pretty much every aspect of the game. In the storyline - you aren't actually yourself, you pretty much take control of Jim Raynor. I prefered being Magistrate, or Cerebrate, or Executor from the first one, it made me feel like being above the battlefield and issuing orders was an actual position one could be bestowed. But now you basically take on Jim, who was never a character I liked much anyways.

In terms of gameplay - everyone is complaining that Zerg are underpowered, though I think its really just that they have a steeper learning curve than the other races. Battle.net Matchmaking is still in some VERY infant stages - it rarely gets it right until you've had about 100 games under your belt.

Honestly, I'm not sure its worth the $60. It seems a decent enough game - but the struggles people have had with it are really putting me off of it, I would not urge anyone I know to go and buy it. There was even an issue on the technical forums where MULTIPLE people reported that the game borked their video card. (Though I think that was mostly an issue with people trying to overclock them or something and it caused issues on certain cards)

Re:Just in time! (2, Funny)

zombie_monkey (1036404) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226090)

I spent almost half a minute wondering who did a graphics overhaul to Star Control 2.

Re:Just in time! (1)

MaXMC (138127) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226458)

I'm waiting for the StarCraft 1 re-make in the StarCraft 2 graphics engine. That's something I'd buy.

Re:Just in time! (1)

javajeff (73413) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227332)

Well, I am loving SC2. I have always believed that innovation is way overrated. Some people just need any update to their favorite games. When a company innovates and creates a new experience, then everyone complains that they changed the game. Game companies cannot win, and it is a daunting task to try to satisfy everyone.

I think that the game should have LAN play, but I am not someone who uses that feature right now in my life. My main source of entertainment is battle.net. Let me say that the new battle.net is amazing. I can get into any type of game in about 1 minute with millions of people online. Furthermore, no chat rooms = no spammers. I am not being bombarded my immature garbage. I understand why Blizzard was trying to get real names into the picture. They are trying to make the gaming community more mature for everyone to enjoy.

Re:Just in time! (1)

MaWeiTao (908546) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227888)

The fact that they didn't reinvent what works is the best part of the game. There are games that really only need graphical updates and this is one of them. I'm tired of developers having to reinvent a game with every sequel. And given the competitive nature of Starcraft it makes sense they would be reluctant to tamper with the formula.

As for the other problems, it's really par for the course in this day and age. Is anyone surprised they dropped LAN support? For all the clamor how many people would actually ever take advantage of LAN? When it comes down to it, if you're not happy with the changes, or lack thereof, don't buy the game. What you don't do is buy the game, knowing the problems exist, and then complain after the fact.

Re:Just in time! (1)

Vaphell (1489021) | more than 3 years ago | (#33229564)

Not buying and complaining? You are promptly shot down by the zealous fanboys as a wannabe pirate, good luck complaining. I thought i may as well become one and now i am an example of this:
http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2010/2/19/ [penny-arcade.com]
I DLed warezed copy of SC2 and I say this as someone who has most of the blizzard games. I decided they are not worthy getting my monies anymore. They changed so much after the merge with activision it's unbelievable. Axing tried and true features left and right does not win my sympathy. I checked crappy story of sc2 - mostly out of old sentiments - and never touched it again.

Re:Just in time! (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227936)

StarCraft 2 has no LAN play...Wow. Just...wow.

This is like the Bush re-election of the gaming world.

Re:Just in time! (1)

aliquis (678370) | more than 3 years ago | (#33225960)

I was almost ready to buy Starcraft 2, but now I see this amazing game!

What has been stopping you so far? Sounds like you have a machine capable of running it and in that case I don't see the problem if it's anything you could see yourself playing.

The game was dirt cheap, I was expecting more, price was 389 SEK here in Sweden.

Personally I actually get to play it at decent quality I would have to invest in a Intel P55 + Core i5 760/870 or X58 + i7 930 (preferably with one UDMA133-controller to) with GTX 460 1 GB graphics system. And well, that will cost a lot more =P

The game is a piss in the ocean and I wouldn't hesitate for 0.5 second. I would rather had spent more money in it, spending 30 times more on the computer than the game I buy the computer for seem kinda weird. Would rather had given Blizzard more money.

Re:Just in time! (1)

SkunkPussy (85271) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226034)

interesting, in england it was about 40% more than any other pc game

Re:Just in time! (1)

delinear (991444) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226712)

Regardless of the price there are all kinds of reasons not to be first in the queue to buy a new game - DRM worries and multiplayer issues being the primary ones (a lot of people choose to wait unti they fix the first wave of issues before they commit to buy).

Linux users (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33225890)

Don't go to LAN parties, they're too busy compiling their favourite kernel.

Re:Linux users (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33225950)

...they're too busy compiling their favourite kernel.

Disgusting. You people are obsessed with sex.

Re:Linux users (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33226032)

I'm compiling my kernel RIGHT NOW... Heh, heh...

Re:Linux users (1)

allaunjsilverfox2 (882195) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226036)

0.o Is that some kind of meta-joke? You can never tell here..........

Re:Linux users (1)

Rob the Bold (788862) | more than 3 years ago | (#33228218)

Disgusting. You people are obsessed with sex.

Snotty recompiled my kernel twice last night.

Re:Linux users (1)

siddesu (698447) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226070)

As a proud gentoo user, I'm too busy recompiling my whole distro, you insensitive clod.

Re:Linux users (2, Funny)

aiht (1017790) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226174)

I compile my kernel at LAN parties! Mwuhuahahaha!

Re:Linux users (1)

RAMMS+EIN (578166) | more than 3 years ago | (#33233410)

``Linux users Don't go to LAN parties, they're too busy compiling their favourite kernel.''

Oh come on, that's so old. I'm already halfway through figuring out how to compile glibc without it taking up hundreds of megabytes!

Resolution error (2, Interesting)

tacarat (696339) | more than 3 years ago | (#33225976)

Win7, 64bit C:\Program Files (x86)\Glest_3.2.2\Glest.ini There's a "Windowed=0" setting. Changed it to a one and ran ok. I'm feeling a bit too lazy RTFforums to see if there's a fix or to switch the regular resolution settings for full screen >.>

Re:Resolution error (1)

tacarat (696339) | more than 3 years ago | (#33225986)

Curses. Screen edges needed for scrolling. Maybe sleep would be better than a quick game...

Re:Resolution error (1)

timothyb89 (1259272) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226056)

You can use the arrow keys for scrolling without too much trouble in addition to panning by clicking on the minimap. It's one of the more windowed-mode friendly games I've played, really.

Again no x64 Windows build - why? (3, Insightful)

silanea (1241518) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226294)

Not that I think this game would hit any 32 bit architecture limitations, but why is there no 64 bit build for Windows provided? I have seen this with many projects. OpenOffice, Inkscape and Mozilla do this, Eclipse only recently began to offer all of its preassembled packages for both Windows platforms. Developers of proprietary consumer software, with the partial exception of Adobe, seem to be largely oblivious of the existance of 64 bit platforms, probably because switching will not reap them more cash. But why do OSS developers opt to ignore this platform? The Steam Hardware Survey [steampowered.com] has Windows 7 x64 at 28%, double that of its 32 bit version and following closely to the 32% of XP 32 bit. 64 bit is not any more the domain of nerds or early adopters, it is becoming the dominating platform in the Windows ecosystem.

So my question is: Why is it ignored? Would it really be hard to provide 64 bit builds? Would this require a lot of additional development work?

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (1)

jack2000 (1178961) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226360)

My money is on laziness. At least valve is taking 64bit seriously. Frankly most stuff works on it just fine. Also microsoft are working on bettering the WoW(windows on windows) visualizing software(it's been there ever since XP64) and there's going to be some more time where you wouldn't care if an app is 32 or 64 bit because both will work ok.

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (2, Interesting)

richlv (778496) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226376)

maybe because ms/windows ignored 64bit for many years, while other operating systems supported that. so maybe people associated "windows=32bit" or something.

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226470)

It's not nearly as important, because most Windows software ship with all their dependencies as well. While 64 bit linux can run 32 bit software, then you need all the libraries to be compiled as 32 bit as well because otherwise pointer sizes would differ. Unless the application uses more than 4GB of RAM, all you miss is a few percent performance.

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (1)

imbaczek (690596) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226638)

a good, free, x64 c/c++ compiler doesn't exists on windows. gcc is getting there, but it's still not the thing yet.

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33235830)

MSVC Express compiles x64 just fine. You have to install the 64-bit Windows SDK to switch to the new compiler.

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (1)

MarbleMunkey (1495379) | more than 3 years ago | (#33245838)

I assume that the GP is a FOSS advocate, and that s/he would not consider that choice 'free'.

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33247994)

You have to install the Windows SDK to develop for Windows anyway. If you don't like the IDE, then run the console compiler: the one you switch to in VC, cl.exe. Or use it with Eclipse. But using a non-Microsoft compiler for Windows always means you have to go through a lot of hoops to ensure output compatibility -- manifests, executable headers ( ASLR/DEP/...), unicode (unsupported by mingw), et cetera.... It's almost not worth it unless the compiler blows others away for what you need (ICC for instance, Intel's compiler).

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227650)

Visual Studio Express (the free version) doesn't support 64 bit (at least as of 2008 edition, not sure if 2010 changed this?), so you have to pay for it. That's the reason why I don't compile for 64 bit (even when writing Windows-only applications, and even though I run 64 bit myself), and I suspect this may be a factor for other free developers too. I'm not sure if there are any other free compilers on Windows that support 64 bit?

It does seem odd to me that Microsoft would limit this functionality - whilst they obviously want a reason for people to pay for the full versions of Visual Studio, crippling 64 bit is surely going to harm adoption of 64 bit Windows, which can't be good for Microsoft.

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33228112)

With the free Windows SDK (used to be called Platform SDK) installed, you can compile x64 with VS express editions.

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (1)

RAMMS+EIN (578166) | more than 3 years ago | (#33233392)

``It does seem odd to me that Microsoft would limit this functionality - whilst they obviously want a reason for people to pay for the full versions of Visual Studio, crippling 64 bit is surely going to harm adoption of 64 bit Windows, which can't be good for Microsoft.''

Actually, I've heard many complaints about 64-bit Windows. Perhaps less adoption of 64-bit Windows _is_ good for Microsoft ... or at least was when they released VS 2008.

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (3, Insightful)

ildon (413912) | more than 3 years ago | (#33228460)

64 bit is perfectly backwards compatible with 32 bit. If there's no advantage to making a 64 bit build, why bother? It's just more QA time for no reason, and possibly more support time later on.

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33230144)

If the application is not running up against memory limits, there is no reason to issue a 64-bit application. In fact, there are several reasons not to:

  • Organizational cost. Providing extra builds takes time and effort: increased build time, increased testing, increased support requests when someone downloads the wrong build.
  • Resource cost. Each build takes up space on the server and takes more bandwidth to upload. 64-bit executables can be larger than 32-bit ones.
  • Execution cost. 64-bit applications can run slower than 32-bit applications. Pointers take twice as much space, which results in increased cache misses.

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (1)

silanea (1241518) | more than 3 years ago | (#33237346)

Execution cost. 64-bit applications can run slower than 32-bit applications. Pointers take twice as much space, which results in increased cache misses.

This strikes me as odd. Since I have yet to come back to platform-native programming I only have taken cursory interest in the innards of 64 bit systems. But one of the universally provided arguments in favour of switching is an increase in performance. Guess I will have to read up quite a lot before diving in again. :-)

In any case, would not the performance penalty of any 32 bit emulation or "compatibility mode" on 64 bit platforms cancel any theoretical advantage of staying with 32 bits?

Re:Again no x64 Windows build - why? (3, Informative)

Softhaus (1451127) | more than 3 years ago | (#33234016)

As the build person for Mega-Glest... I would say no 64 bit build for windows because it isn't needed at the moment, the 32 bit version runs fine in 64 bit windows. Linux on the other hand has different solutions for 32 bit emulation for different linux distro's.. the easiest thing was to build 32 and 64 bit versions under nix.

Spring RTS (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33226406)

If you want a really good real time strategy engine/game try spring (http://springrts.com) it is far more robust and fun than any other rts I've ever played (including this one), it's interface easily surpasses starcraft 2 and supcom.

For example It's great because you can select a bunch of units, and then draw a line of attack and have your units attack each position, instead of cluster fucking together.

All projectiles are actually calculated out as to whether they'll hit something, and everything's affected by terrain and wreckage.

Check it out. It's really cool.

Re:Spring RTS (1)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227560)

I second this. The Spring engine has many good games (mods) available. Games range from Total Annihilation clones to WWII to truly unique game play like Kernel Panic. There is even a Star Wars mod (looks awesome) nearing completion.

The game play is fun. The graphics are decent. There is an active community in their forums. The developers (engine and mods) are accessible and friendly. There are even a variety of AIs to choose from; many actively being supported and developed. Some mods even have their own, custom AI. As such, the game supports multi-player (up to 8v8 from what I've seen - though may not be an actual engine limit) and single player equally well.

Spring RTS truly is an open source gem. If you haven't tried it, you're missing out. If its been a while since you've tried it, you should try again. Also note, they are nearing completion of a major new release of the engine which drastically improves multi-threading.

It appears Spring RTS is beginning to attract hardcore AI developers, including AI students. There appears to be at least one project (in Python) in development to specifically cater to these AI developers. So I expect the state of AI development will continue to richly develop over time. If AI development is of interest to you, Spring may be a viable source of research and development. AIs can currently be written in C/C++, Java, Lua, and I believe C#. The Python AI interface becomes available with the upcoming engine release.

So go check it out! It has something for everyone!

The graphics in FOSS games.. (4, Insightful)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226450)

One thing I've noticed over and over again is that F/OSS games always look horrible, have seriously outdated graphics and usually even sound effects are annoying enough to make me want to completely disable sounds. And another thing that seems very common for F/OSS is that they're always aimed for playing against other human players or a skirmish against AI players; there's never any actually interesting, multi-faceted single-player campaign with any worthwhile storyline. Why? Do we have no skilled artists to create graphics for games, or is it lack of coding skills? Or why no interest in developing a game enjoyable solo, only multiplayer games? Hell, not even co-operative campaigns with storylines! I'd give almost anything to find a recent, good-looking game with interesting storyline and which could be played co-op; none of the commercial games anymore these days seem to offer that so that'd be a great niche for F/OSS games to fill.

Of course, I haven't tried every single F/OSS game out there, but I've come across and tried quite a large selection and checked out gameplay videos etc on even more games than I have actually played. I _might_ have missed some really good ones but given the overwhelming evidence as to the quality of F/OSS games I doubt it. And no, I don't count remakes of old commercial games, they're not new games even if they happen to be from scratch with a different license scheme..

Makes me kinda sad. I am a F/OSS supporter, I've got several computers running Linux 24/7, and hell, even my phone has already 2 different Linux distros installed on it. But I am and have always been a gamer and I just can't use Linux for my gaming needs; I always run into issues when trying to run Windows-games via Wine, and there's no worthwhile Linux-games available...

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33226466)

Why? Do we have no skilled artists to create graphics for games, or is it lack of coding skills?

It's pretty simple.

Anyone who has graphical skills doesn't want some "programmer" dictating to them what art to make. Especially if they are not getting paid. They would rather make the art for their own game idea.
Anyone who has programming skills doesn't want some "artist" dictating to them what type of game to make. Especially if they are not getting paid. They would rather create the design for their own game idea.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33226614)

And add to that the fact;

To get consistent looking graphical work it generally requires a single vision/direction from an art director,
throw into that pot the idea that every graphic artist wants to be the "art director" because their graphical
vision is *better* than anybody elses, the process does not lend itself very nicely in a co-operative foss environment
when a "dictator wielding a whip and dangling carrots"** gets a better/faster result.

When starting a new band someone should be the bassist. (no offense to bass players)
Some people need to get over their ego's so that we can progress.

IMHO programmers** are better at co-operating than graphic artists.
Maybe that is because logic is more quantifiable than aesthetics.

my2c
** Of course there are exceptions: <cough> Mr. T. de Raadt </cough>

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33226682)

Now that I think about it, it might be better for FOSS projects to pay for their graphics.
So take your banner money and donations and pay a *professional* graphic artist.
That in itself will bring FOSS to a new acceptable level.

The professional graphic artists are suffering at the moment because every kid with a
pirated copy of photoshop think they can do it themselves and the artists with real *trained* talent
are leaving the profession as they are being priced out of the market.
If you don't believe me, surf the net and see how much crap is out there.

Don't skimp on the graphics, it hurts us all.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

Sylak (1611137) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227398)

The professional graphic artists are suffering at the moment because every kid with a pirated copy of photoshop think they can do it themselves and the artists with real *trained* talent are leaving the profession as they are being priced out of the market. If you don't believe me, surf the net and see how much crap is out there.

There's actually a blog post by a "game developer" who says to use this to your advantage, and basically just hire amateur/hobbyist artists on DeviantArt because they're easier to rip off. http://kaitol.com/how-to-hire-an-artist/ [kaitol.com]

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

Raenex (947668) | more than 3 years ago | (#33229534)

He's not ripping anybody off. That's the free market at work.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

tpv (155309) | more than 3 years ago | (#33235208)

I agree.
His writing style is pretty ordinary, and he expresses his ideas badly, but I don't think that what he actually said was that bad.
It mostly boiled down to:
  • Hiring freelancers through DeviantArt is cheaper than going out to a "professional" artist and gets better results
  • Ask them to set their own price for the work you 're requesting
  • Pay a fixed price, rather than a % of sales.
  • Pay on completion of the work, not upfront.
  • Once the deal's done, and you've paid them the agreed price, it's none of their business how much you are/aren't making from the game.

I think the way he expressed himself leaves a lot to be desired, and it's might well be the case that he's out to screw people. But the actual process he recommends seems to be fairly standard for freelance artwork.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

quickOnTheUptake (1450889) | more than 3 years ago | (#33246796)

I read an article not long ago (sorry, can't find a link) basically saying that artists think of their work as part of their soul. This doesn't mean artists never give away work, and it doesn't meant that programmer's think of their work as worthless, but it does seem like there is a tendency for artists to elevate the value of their work to the invaluable-and-irreplaceable end of the scale.
I suspect there are a few other things that compound the problem, and make it easier for programmers to cooperate. For example, most programers think of their programs as tools. As long as everyone agrees on what the tool is doing (i.e., what features fit) it is pretty easy for other people to contribute. If your patch fixes a bug--and doesn't introduce regressions--then it's pretty cut and dry: it makes the tool a better tool for everyone and makes the dev's job easier; if it implements a feature that the lead developer wants but hasn't had time to write, ditto. Obviously there are gray areas, where the bugfix is a dirty hack or the dev doesn't want the feature, but it is generally clear-ish, and even the grey areas can be ironed out if the team is communicating (e.g., "I'm not taking this hack for x, y, z reasons. . . do it right and come back").
As you noted, artwork doesn't have such clear lines about what is and isn't an improvement.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227712)

Anyone who has graphical skills doesn't want some "programmer" dictating to them what art to make. Especially if they are not getting paid. They would rather make the art for their own game idea.

I don't think that fully explains, otherwise we'd at least see the results of their efforts. Unless you mean they attempt to make their own game, but fail because they lack programming skills, which yes does seem likely.

I think more generally, the problem is that artists aren't interested in making graphics specific for games at all - they'd rather draw say a picture, but game art takes a different kind of approach, and I can see it being less interesting (e.g., repeatedly drawing sprites over and over in different orientations; or making a set of 3D models that all work consistently with the same set of animation routines).

In general, I suspect that the required level of coordination makes it harder. I've had someone offer to make graphics for an open source game I'm writing, but it isn't as simple as just bunging me a few JPEGs, we've got to work together to make sure everything's integrated into the game correctly.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

the_womble (580291) | more than 3 years ago | (#33235406)

You might well be right: the only game actually play, Battle for Wesnoth, clearly values artists and has beautiful artwork - although if you look at the original release it started with crappy graphics. Is it true that the developers of game with poor graphics do not value artistic contributions.

I do not think the graphics in Glest are that bad either.

Incidentally, the GP should note it has lots of fun single player campaigns,

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1, Troll)

MaXMC (138127) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226538)

Have you tried The Battle for Wesnoth?

http://wiki.wesnoth.org/Description [wesnoth.org]

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33228640)

Awesome. Looks like Ultima VII (1992). Great game.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

Stalinbulldog (925149) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226596)

For the campaign element, at least, I'd suggest you try looking into Battle for Wesnoth, it's an RPTBS. But in general I agree, a lot of the open source games still seem driven by the idea that they are written by coders for coders. And apparently we coders don't care about graphics at all.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (2, Insightful)

zwei2stein (782480) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226686)

1) Multiplayer foss gmes are more common because it is easier to get into touch with other people who like to play (and) code multiplayer games. Which is blessing as they can agree on game design and mechanics because they usually want to clone one specific game (which is good thing because project where developers can not agree on basic mechanics die fast.).

2) Decent detailed 3D model of one humanoid creature can take month or more. Skilled artists simply do not have enough free time to do it as hobby. At best, you either end up with quickly made models of low quality by someone experienced.

3) Storyline is major pain and i frankly prefer f/oss games without story because if they have one, it is pretty terrible thanks to internal group dynamics where plot is decided by comitee (where everyone wants to have "his" contribution, especially people who do not know much about to how to create good story but which were nursed by whatever crap paperbacks local game store had). You really need able writer and devs that do not mess it up.

4) It is very hard to dismiss submissions as low quality. Hurt feelings, vendetas, splintering of groups. Game eventually end up being mess of assets that you can not get rid of without major political struggle.

But hey, sites like this: http://opengameart.org/ [opengameart.org] exist and they are awesome!

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (4, Informative)

Lendrick (314723) | more than 3 years ago | (#33228128)

Hey folks!

Founder of http://opengameart.org/ [opengameart.org] here. I noticed the bandwidth spike, so I thought I'd take a look at the referrer link, and I'm glad to see someone finally mention us on Slashdot. Honestly, I'd love to have a *real* slashdotting. The server's hefty enough to handle it, and the publicity would be immensely helpful. :)

At any rate, one of our underlying missions is to help FOSS games move beyond "programmer art", and we do that by taking donations and then using those to commission artists to do art. I run the site mostly out of pocket, and with all the commissions, it costs me a good $500 monthly, in addition to the roughly $100/month in donations that we bring in (mostly community members with recurring subscriptions). Shameless plug: If you subscribe, even for $3/month, that's money we can use to buy art for everyone that will never go away. :)

One of our current projects is an art revamp for a Smash Bros. clone called Ultimate Smash Friends. ( http://usf.tuxfamily.org/wiki/Main_Page [tuxfamily.org] )

Here's are the first two characters we've commissioned:

Xeon: http://opengameart.org/content/xeon-ultimate-smash-friends [opengameart.org]
Awesome Possum: http://opengameart.org/content/the-awesome-possum-ultimate-smash-friends [opengameart.org]

It's a lot of work, and it's not cheap, but there's a lot of FOSS game code out there with a lot of potential, and I think it's worth it. Plus, all of the assets we commission are CC-licensed, so they're reusable as part of the commons.

Feel free to hit me up if you have any questions or ideas. If you have thoughts about the site interface (we're still working on it), there's a forum thread discussing planned changes for OGA 2.0. I'd love to hear what you think!

Peace,
Bart K.
http://opengameart.org/ [opengameart.org]

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (2)

Lendrick (314723) | more than 3 years ago | (#33228286)

Just a quick addendum: You can catch us on IRC, too. We're #opengameart on irc.freenode.net. Here's a web link:

http://webchat.freenode.net/?channels=opengameart [freenode.net]

I'm in and out of the channel during the work day, but it's a pretty active place, so there's always someone around.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33229112)

A decently programmed game can take a year or more. Skilled programmers shouldn't have time to do it as a hobby. Yet, they do. Why the difference?

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

fikx (704101) | more than 3 years ago | (#33229706)

follow-up question for 2)
why are OSS games considered only a hobby?
I look forward to the day when a dedicated game developer (not in spare time, but to make a game and sell it) include the source code on the install disk...
but I can prolly guess a few answers to my own question...

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 3 years ago | (#33231652)

5) Open game development is a sloooooooooow process. It'd take several years to make a campaign a player goes through once in maybe 20 hours and never looks at again. Story amplifies the problem because once you know it that's it.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33226716)

Yeah, modern AAA games require coordinated and intense effort by a lot of highly skilled people with different abilities (designers, writers, coders, artists, sound / media asset producers) and that's something that basically requires the for-profit closed source model. F/OSS arguably has the upper hand on the testing phase but that's not much of a win. People will put themselves through the hell that is a release "crunch" for large sums of money and/or stock, but for free? In their spare time? lolno. The best F/OSS graphics I'm aware of are in Sauerbraten [sourceforge.net] .

Things get worse still when you expect them to develop for a niche, fragmented platform like Linux. Sorry guys, I run Debian testing myself, but face it: it is niche, and it is fragmented. No unified gaming API stack like DirectX, no guarantee your game will work with the broken pulseaudio config in release Hurr of distro Durr. People want to reach a wide audience with their game, and most people run windows. Thus, the free (as in beer) game situation is ironically much better on windows. In particular there are vast numbers of remakes of classics done in RAD languages like BlitzBasic, e.g. Driller [ovine.net] .

There's always WINE, at least. Of course there's no guarantee of compatibility but it keeps getting better.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

zacronos (937891) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227830)

I haven't tried them out yet, but some of the games on this page look rather nice: http://springrts.com/wiki/Games [springrts.com]

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 3 years ago | (#33230504)

Open source always prioritizes function over form, as it should be. If the core gameplay is good, what do you need graphics for at all? See Nethack.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 3 years ago | (#33231718)

Attracting users which is critical for a multiplayer-based game. You don't want 90% of your users to be scared away the first time they start your game. Polishing something to the degree where an average user will accept it is much harder than it sounds.

Re:The graphics in FOSS games.. (1)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | more than 3 years ago | (#33235428)

That's just an excuse and a really poor one at that, too: there is absolutely no reason why you can't have both, they aren't exclusive of one another.

Graphics isn't just eye-candy; if used properly it can be a powerful boost to the atmosphere, it can be used to draw the player's attention to crucial storyline developments, and last but not least, some people are just more visual and others and as such need more visual stimulus to be able to fully immerse themselves in the game.

Question (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 3 years ago | (#33226530)

Anybody know how well it plays on Windows 7 x64, and/or if they plan a 64 bit Windows port? It is really a shame how FOSS developers nearly always have an x64 Linux port but almost never have a Windows x64, especially given that from what I've seen more and more of the machines are coming with x64 by default to get rid of that pesky 4Gb memory limit.

Sure I know a lot of the time Windows will run the x32 (haven't messed with Linux x64 but I assume they have the same ability) but I've found that native x64 just seems to run better, go figure. I've been running 64 bit builds of apps like Firefox and you can really tell the difference in performance.

Re:Question (1)

iosq (1084989) | more than 3 years ago | (#33227442)

Gave it an install on my Vista x64 machine, runs just fine for me. Be warned though, played Glest waaay back, and the nostalgia goggles did nothing for the graphics - low polygon models and blurry textures await.

Bothered by executable installer, give me a deb! (2, Informative)

radarsat1 (786772) | more than 3 years ago | (#33228022)

I downloaded it but I notice the installer is an ELF executable. This is sort of a Windows-style way to distribute an application. If I run it, I have no idea where it will put files on my system. I'm not too comfortable with that, why not distribute a deb that will allow my system's package manager to let me uninstall it easily?

(Or next best thing, just a tarball that unzips to a predictable location and runs from there.)

As it stands, if I want to be careful I'd have to create a low-priviledge user with a clean directory just to easily track what happens during install without worrying about it writing to my system directories or to a weird place in my home directory. Kind of a lot of work just to check out a game.

Re:Bothered by executable installer, give me a deb (1)

Softhaus (1451127) | more than 3 years ago | (#33235730)

There is a deb on playdeb.net for an older release.. perhaps bug the guys over there to update it to 3.3.6. Sorry, as the build miester for Mega-Glest (MG) I don't have tones of Linux experience so making native packages for every distro is a bit of a challenge.

Re:Bothered by executable installer, give me a deb (1)

Excors (807434) | more than 3 years ago | (#33237108)

Have you seen the OpenSUSE Build Service [opensuse.org] ? That can automatically build native packages for several distros (OpenSUSE, Fedora, Mandriva, Debian, Ubuntu (if you don't depend on anything in Universe)), and already has plenty of games [opensuse.org] , and isn't too hard to set up when you can copy from existing examples. (I've been trying to use it for 0 A.D. and it seems okay so far.)

Any Mac version? (1)

Eclipse-now (987359) | more than 3 years ago | (#33235686)

I'd love to play from mac to my (ugh!) PC laptop...

Re:Any Mac version? (1)

Softhaus (1451127) | more than 3 years ago | (#33235724)

We need someone to compile this on Mac. the source SHOULD compile fine on Mac!

Re:Any Mac version? (1)

Eclipse-now (987359) | more than 3 years ago | (#33235760)

I don't hack or compile or X11 or stuff... not that good. Yet.
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