Why do we care ?
The first engine Torque supported GNU/Linux (and a few GNU/Linux games were released using this engine) but their second TGEA (Torque Game Engine Advanced) sadly didn’t.
With Torque3D porting games to GNU/Linux was possible, but haven’t been actually done yet – and no official GNU/Linux support was given.
Now that this engine will be free software, it could improve to support GNU/Linux and make games like The Age Of The Decadence and Dead State possible to port to GNU/Linux ! (although no official porting plans were announced yet)
It *might* even be possible to port the whole engine to GNU/Linux so people can develop games using T3D on GNU/Linux !
Why are we doing this?
Nine months ago, we realigned the goals of GarageGames; making Torque 3D available via a permissive open source license is a strategic move towards fulfilling the company vision. Our first goal was to use iTorque to build a new product we call 3 Step Studio. We envisioned a game development tool that requires no programming at all and began to build it. This product is available today for free, but it’s very, very, early in development and we expect to iterate many times before it is a commercially viable product. Our second goal was to build a service division. I’m happy to say that we’ve already booked our first million dollars in service work and we expect the growth trend to continue as we make Torque 3D more accessible. You can visit our services site at services.garagegames.com. We are very well prepared and staffed to provide support, training, and custom development.
Our long term plans are to focus on innovative uses of game technology. Currently, all GarageGames employees have the option to work on any project on Fridays. We are working on some really great projects under the initiative and it’s our hope that we will be able to invest in several of these projects as they evolve. We’ve encouraged our developers to open source these projects. If you think you have what it takes to be an innovative developer using game technology, consider applying for one of our open positions.
Dave Wyand will be leading the T3D open source effort and he has posted a blog describing the details around how we will run the development process. But before you dive into the details with Dave, I’d like to leave you with answers to some expected questions:
Is this version different or a subset of T3D?
We’ve split off some modules as separate downloads and we’ve removed some art to bring down the payload size. Other than those changes, the versions are the same.
Is this just a way for you to dump Torque 3D?
No. We’ve been using T3D internally for service projects and we expect that to continue. In some cases, our service work will directly benefit the core code base.
I recently bought your engine, I feel ripped off.
We will be offering refunds for T3D purchases that happened on or after Sept 1st but before this announcement.
What about other GarageGames engines?
We are starting open source efforts with T3D and learning from this experience. For now, the other engines/products are not available via the MIT license.
The other piece of news that I’m excited to share is that I will be leading the charge on future Torque 3D development with the help of, well, you, of course!
After the launch of TST Pro I began working closely with GarageGames. I’ve had my hand in nearly every game engine we have launched (plus a few internal ones), and along the way I came on board full-time (and have been for a number of years now). Last year I was the Technical Lead on Torque 3D 1.2, the last retail version of the engine.
How will the open source version work?
We’ve chosen GitHub to host the Torque 3D repositories. GitHub has taken on the role of the location for Open Source projects on the Internet. It allows for great community interaction, encourages the forking of code bases, and easy merging of changes. And if you’re not yet into git (GitHub for Windows and Mac are tools that really help), GitHub supports both Subversion access and automatic Zip archives of all repositories.
Who will maintain the repositories?
To maintain the master Torque 3D branch a committee will be set up that has Write Access and may respond to pull requests. This committee is dedicated to making the best core version of Torque 3D so that others can build upon a reliable foundation. Performance, reliability, maintainability and scalability (should turn that into a crest 🙂 are the goals of this committee.
The launch committee will consist of the following GarageGames members:
- Dave Wyand
- Eric Preisz
- David Montgomery-Blake
- Scott Burns
Quote:Our mission is to build a foundation for a sustainable environment that fosters collaboration and community development of the greatest open source game development platform.
However, we don’t believe that committee members should only come from GarageGames. One of our primary tasks is to seek out and retain qualified core team members that are dedicated to our goals. Over time everyone but myself will be replaced by members of the community and the committee will be allowed to grow as required.
What will be included in the open source version?
The complete Torque 3D 1.2 source code, along with the four starting templates, will be included in the GitHub repository. A separate repository for reference documentation will be set up. Other items, such as the FPS Tutorial template, will be part of a separate download to help keep the main repository to a manageable size.
There are other, closed source components of Torque 3D that I would like to open up following our launch.
Following the launch of Torque 3D on GitHub, another job of the committee will be to come up with a roadmap. We’ve decided to wait until after launch to do this because we want community feedback to help chart our course. My personal list of things I’d like all of us to tackle are:
- Performance and bugs
- Further separation of core from other layers
- Additional platforms (OSX and Linux)