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Are Open-Source Games & Community Game Engines Fading Away?

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  • #71
    Patents. That's the problem. You can't make anything anymore without some corporate lawyer sicking his head out shouting "Hey that looks like our code!" even though you've never seen their code. Patents make people afraid to innovate.

    Personally I think there is a lot of Open Source awesomeness out there and I'm thankful we have it. I thank the Indies also, they have brought a lot to our table and given us a choice. Without them we would be stuck with so-called "AAA" Games. Should be called unoptimized and bloated garbage.

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    • #72
      I dont know here in europe you cant patent source code, I dont know... and people get suid violating gpl even (or because) they dont release the source code, so not releasing the source does not help you much to hide real crimes

      But what I wanted to add, one very important game, even its not there yet for most of us, is minetest, that gametype is made for opensource, we see already a very active modding community, still the game lacks some basic mechanics/grafics to be fun. That said I was never a very big minecraft player, so maybe for others its already there.

      it has the potentiol to run faster than this java minecraft garbage and modding is less limited, and its free beer

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      • #73
        Originally posted by DMJC View Post
        You want Open Source Games, you need to make tools for artists.
        That is really true. As an open source community, it would be interesting to create cross-engine tools. GIMP and Blender are good example for the artistic side. Now it would be interesting to have cross-engine game and level designers tools: asset browser, mission tools, game debuggers...

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        • #74
          I would also like to add that in addition to the lack of tools for artists as well as a hardwarely ill-equipped community (*cough* intel gfx *cough*) there is another problem which I want to emphasize: the people who run serious hardcore games are not using Linux to run the games, because (well no ofence) besides a few titles here and there which - while do run do not as well as they do in windows:

          Left 4 Dead 1 (WINE) (a multiplayer coop shooter) - runs but crashes on connection to some servers, sometimes crashes on connecting to a server which previously didn't crash, voice communication is unavailable

          Left 4 Dead 2 (native port) - runs, but stutters constantly unless copied and run from a ramdisk or SSD, in addition the modding capacity is extremely limited compared to the windows version because the port eats massive quantities of it's very limited 32-bit virtual address space

          Race Driver: GRID (WINE) - runs, but with severe performance penalties and frequent stuttering, surprisingly turning on experimental CSMT feature causes FPS to drop in half

          GRID Autosport (native) - runs, but stutters constantly, does not properly detect the CPU so AVX instructions codepaths are unused, my wheel is completely undetected so I was forced to test the game with the keyboard

          all these games work perfectly on windows, that being said, some games do run very well on linux, here is a list of games that work perfectly:

          Killing Floor
          Serious Sam 3
          Bioshock Infinite (needed a minor patching of the X server to make it work with Fluxbox)
          Metro 2033 Redux
          Insurgency
          Global Offensive (crashes every now and then but that is also true of the windows version)

          people who are serious hardcore gamers are not looking for these problems, any more than artists looking for writing missions in C++. so they go to windows because there gaming works properly (in terms of gaming only ! don't get me wrong) so if gamers go to windows that meens that the artists also go to windows (in addition to the reason that was already mentioned earlier) and for you the open source engine developers: is the reason you are left with *cough*-quality gaming hardware/software so called "playerbase"

          have to understand that people who buy 800$ video cards are not going to go for Linux, despite all the positive things that can be said about the OS, it currently does not properly fit the gaming bill for a serious hardcore gamer
          monohouse
          Junior Member
          Last edited by monohouse; 13 December 2015, 01:19 PM.

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          • #75
            Originally posted by CapsAdmin View Post
            I'm not sure if story secrets, easter eggs, alternate endings, etc is something that's attractive to a story teller with open source games. Any comment on this from someone who has played or made an open source game whose main focus was a story?
            Hmm, well, UFO:AI has a pretty involved story, even though it's not the main focus of the game. It's an interesting hard sci-fi take on X-Com. The story changes a bit throughout the development because it's partly based on item descriptions.

            As another example you could take Ace Attorney Online. It is completely story-based, but it works because it's easy to create cases, so you don't end up playing the same thing over and over again, but rather see something new from the community every time.

            Originally posted by CapsAdmin View Post
            And to add to what DMSJ says it seems we are too many programmers in this field. Game engines turn out to be programmer friendly rather than artist friendly.
            Well, it depends on the goals of the game, I'd say. The game I made, DArcomage, is specifically a clone of an older game that can no longer run even on Windows. In that case there's no reason to make it artist-friendly, because the art is already there. (Though in my case you can add new cards, which need card-specific art, but that's just dropping in an image file in the card's lua directory, nothing fancy).

            Originally posted by CapsAdmin View Post
            One community I can think of that is sort of open source ish is the löve community. Löve is an open source 2d game engine which lets you use lua to make games and many games for it are open source. It's difficult to hide lua code and a project folder with source code can just be dropped on an exe file to make it run the game so I think that's two reasons why they tend to be open source. In my experience in this community it seems that many aren't aware of/don't care what free software even is but the feel is definitely there.

            I've noticed this in game modding communities too where the game is proprietary but the mods (even if they are very versatile) are open source and or free without the programmers really knowing anything about free software. I came from one of these modding communities on windows and ended up here on linux.
            Yes, quite! I came from the UT2004 modding community. Mods there were also open-source by definition, because it was forbidden to sell mods, and they are written in UnrealScript, which is included into the distributed mod files (though without comments, so having people explicitly put the source up somewhere is still better).

            But now with UT4, this is a bit of a problem, because now it's allowed to sell mods. I am still doing mods (and I can now use GPL for them thanks to no longer having to abide by the non-commercial clause), but some are against the notion of open-source mods, citing things like cheating. On the other hand, there is a subset of players that much like on Linux refuse to run mods that are not open-source, citing security concerns to the system (mods are now complete C++ programs, so they could have backdoors or malware). I should really make an AppArmor profile for the game, too.

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            • #76
              Originally posted by Mailaender View Post
              OpenRA started out as a re-implementation or open source game clone and it has only been a few months since support for later games of the series like Tiberian Sun and Red Alert 2 started to mature.
              Woah, it has support for RA2 and TS? Wow, that's awesome! Just half a year ago I was tinkering with some simple mods for RA2. Will have to check this out, then.

              Also, nice to see you here

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              • #77
                Originally posted by monohouse View Post
                have to understand that people who buy 800$ video cards are not going to go for Linux, despite all the positive things that can be said about the OS, it currently does not properly fit the gaming bill for a serious hardcore gamer
                First of all, Windows does not preclude open source. As in, various open source engines do natively support Windows every bit as much as they support Linux. In fact, for some, even more so, since DirectX is still the go-to API for most games.

                Secondly, and this is coming from someone who has been and probably will resume being a hardcore gamer at some point -- FPS be damned, looks be damned. All that matters -- network latency. And, I'm getting far better mileage from Linux + WINE in that respect than I ever got out of Windows. Far better. Be it wired or wireless, network connections perform far better for me in Linux than they do in Windows.

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                • #78
                  Originally posted by F1esDgSdUTYpm0iy View Post
                  First of all, Windows does not preclude open source. As in, various open source engines do natively support Windows every bit as much as they support Linux. In fact, for some, even more so, since DirectX is still the go-to API for most games.

                  Secondly, and this is coming from someone who has been and probably will resume being a hardcore gamer at some point -- FPS be damned, looks be damned. All that matters -- network latency. And, I'm getting far better mileage from Linux + WINE in that respect than I ever got out of Windows. Far better. Be it wired or wireless, network connections perform far better for me in Linux than they do in Windows.
                  Sorry man, I'm not trying to be confrontational or anything, but I gotta call shens on this. The situation you just described is one of the rarest situational experiences anyone can have on linux. Consider yourself lucky. At least 14 out of 15 wifi adapters have horrible linux driver. Almost nobody gets the experience you describe.

                  EDIT: An it's not new either. Anybody remember soft-modems? I sure do. Linux has always been a pain in the ass to get online. And with the state of most wifi drivers and distro's not shipping firmware on live media, it's still a pain in the ass to get linux connected to the internet. Most times on most hardware.
                  duby229
                  Senior Member
                  Last edited by duby229; 13 December 2015, 03:39 PM.

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                  • #79
                    I'll add a small point to this discussion --

                    "Open source" does not have to mean "free" (as in beer). It is possible to sell a read-to-run game while also distributing its source code. Such moves would be much appreciated by the modding community. There are so many games in which the community fixed serious game bugs and made it much better. If there is fear that someone would repackage the game and try to sell it, a clause about that can be added to the license. Many open source licenses are quite restrictive in this sense, and still considered "open".

                    Open source also does not have to mean that other assets (graphics, sound) are likewise open.

                    My point is that "open source" does not have to mean the opposite of "commercial". I would like to see the lines blurred more.

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                    • #80
                      Originally posted by emblemparade View Post
                      My point is that "open source" does not have to mean the opposite of "commercial". I would like to see the lines blurred more.
                      People always conflate these orthoginal concepts.

                      In terms of a diagram, code license and monetarization would be two different axis.
                      For example an application like Skype would be on the proprietary end of the license axis but at the same time on the gratis end of the monetarization axis.

                      Cheers,
                      _

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