Tagged: free source

The Project of the Month is back!

 

Only two days left to vote!!!

Announcement:

 

The Project of the Month was (re)created to raise awareness for individual free game projects and for the the free gaming community in general. Several websites teamed up to make this happen. The supporters of the award are:
Freegamer, Linux Game Database, Rootgamer, Gamin On Linux, Linux Gaming News and Portable Linux Games.
The prize for the Project of the Month is one month promotion provided by the supporting websites. Eligible are free Linux game projects. The voting process and everything else is described in more detail at the Project of the Month page.
In short it consist of two stages:

 

  • nomination stage
    where 10 game projects are nominated by one of the award supporters and a
  • voting stage
    where the winner is decided by approval vote by the community

Every one that has an account at the Linux Game Awards can vote! Go register!

 

The first award will be Project of the Month January 2014! And the short list of 10 nominees is currently created by Freegamer. The online vote for all registered users will be opened 25th of November 2013.

 

The way the Project of the Month will be promoted by the award supporters will follow shortly. Stay tuned.

 

The Linux Game Awards team

 

If you want to support the Project of the Month award or have any other questions you can contact us at: mail at linuxgameawards dot org

 

10 games were nominated for the project of the month, you can vote till the 24th and the winning project will get free ads on the participating GNU/Linux gaming websites (including LGN).

Here is the list:

  • Stunt Rally
  • SuperTuxKart
  • 0 A.D.
  • The Dark Mod
  • Flare
  • Pioneer
  • Simutrans
  • Zero-K
  • Megaglest
  • Hedgewars

So go VOTE!

 

 

Torque3D will be released as free software under the MIT license !

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 !

 

Torque 3D to be Released on Github under the MIT license!
 


static.garagegames.com/static/upload/emp-59817/96478475_500px.png
Eleven years ago, The GarageGames founders did an incredibly innovative thing when they sold a full source game engine for $100. We are excited to continue in their footsteps by announcing that we will be releasing Torque 3D as the best open source game technology in the world. Once again, GarageGames will be changing game development.

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.


Hold on tight, GarageGames is on path to change the way games are made and played.
The Future of Torque 3D is Open Source!
The big news coming out of GarageGames today is that Torque 3D will be going open source under the MIT license. This is huge, and something that we’ve discussed internally for a while. Eric has just posted a blog talking about why Torque 3D is heading in this direction and a little of the history behind the decision. If you haven’t yet read Eric’s blog please head over there and read it first.

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!


Personal Introduction
While the veterans out there know who I am, many of our newer community members may not. I’ve been a part of the GarageGames community since January 2002, and most of that time I’ve been an Associate. My first commercial game dev product was Torque ShowTool Pro in 2004, which was one of the first 3rd party products sold through the GarageGames online store. Those were exciting times when the whole Indie game development scene was trying to define itself and building momentum.

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.
www.gnometech.com/torque/images/blog-2012-09-10/2012-09-10-ProductHistory-Tall.jpg
In 2010 I launched my own gaming portal Zworldo that focused on Torque 3D based web games. A lot of what I learned there made its way back into T3D 1.2, which shows that it really helps to use the products you make.

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.

www.gnometech.com/torque/images/blog-2012-09-10/2012-09-10-GitHubLogo.jpg
Anyone may have Read Access to the public Torque 3D repositories. You create your own fork and do your development work there. You can merge updates from the master branch into your own as they become available. And if you have changes you wish to share with the community to be integrated back into the master, you create a pull request and someone with Write Access can review the changes and merge them in.

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.

Post 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)

Everything is up for discussion at this point. This really is the most transparent development process we’ve ever had.

Frogatto is a new free source (but not art) 2d platform game released for GNU/Linux, Windows, MacOS and even iPhone !

Frogatto is now a fully playable, fun, classic adventure platformer with over thirty levels, version 1.0 representing the first stable version of the game.
Frogatto also contains a fully functional editor that allows you to create your own fun levels or edit existing levels. The engine is heavily moddable, and as an Open Source game we welcome new talented contributors.

Frogatto is a “platformer” or “jump-and-run” videogame. Like many older arcade/nintendo/sega titles, the world is viewed as a cross-section seen from the side, and your character walks and jumps between solid platforms, whilst avoiding being hurt by monsters. We’re not a clone of any specific game; although just by being a platformer, it’s impossible not to have something in common with games like mario or sonic. So we are trying to innovate a bit.

Frogatto is also the protagonist’s name. It’s eponymous.

Open Source?
Frogatto’s code, but only the code, is open-source. Open source means you can see (and reuse) the code we built the game from. This makes frogatto infinitely moddable (and fixable, and maintainable, unlike closed-source ‘moddable’ games which leave you permanently stuck with engine bugs or future incompatibilities). Even more importantly, this means you could take frogatto’s code and build your own 2d game out of it. We can help with advice on that – we’d love to see that happen.

This also means we’re open to translations – at least, once we have code support for it. We’re not going to bother until after the game is released.
The license on the code is the GPL; if you’re going to reuse our work, we insist you “pay it forward.” Our content, though, is not GPL – we’re reserving all rights to the art and music, because we want to be the only people who can sell it.
Also, people have suggested a CC-Non-Commercial license for the content, but we’re not interested. That would expose us to the very real danger of someone releasing the game for free on a platform we’re trying to sell it on. Whether likely to happen or not, if it did happen, it would have a catastrophic effect on sales, so it’s too much of a risk for us.
Those interested should note that some old pieces of our content have been completely open-sourced, and can be found at OpenGameArt.

Can I help out?
Sure. We’re open to level designs, and new puzzles. However, keep in mind that if you do help out, we’re not going to pay you, and anything you give us is ours to sell. We’re not jerks, here, we’re just covering our butt by not making any promises. (Realistically, we’d probably put you in the credits.)

Screenshots

Links
Frogatto
Frogatto Download Page
Frogatto GPLed Source Code
Frogatto Forum
Frogatto 1.0 Release Announcement
OpenGameArt

Thank Sven Arvidsson for the good news

Breakthrough for Free Software Gaming–Ryzom Announces Full Release of Source Code and Artwork, and a Partnership with the Free Software Foundation to Host a Repository of the Game’s Artistic Assets.

PARIS, FRANCE, May 6, 2010 — Winch Gate Properties Ltd, the developer and publisher of massively-multiplayer online science-fantasy role playing games, is proud to announce the release of the source code and artistic assets of the popular MMORPG Ryzom to the Free Software Development Community.

Developers can now access the source code of the end-user client, content creation tools and server in order to make modifications, enhancements or to create their own virtual worlds. This move marks a milestone in Ryzom’s long history and dedication to the free software movement. In order to ensure that Ryzom continues to grow and foster as a free software project, Winch Gate is now releasing Ryzom under the terms of the Free Software Foundation’s GNU Affero General Public License.

Winch Gate is also excited to provide the free software community with high quality professional artistic assets including 3D objects, animation tracks, particle effects and thousands of textures. All of the Ryzom artistic assets will be licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike to ensure that they and any derivative art will be available to all free software projects. These assets will be hosted in a new online repository in partnership with the Free Software Foundation.

By freeing Ryzom code, Winch Gate is transforming the MMORPG marketplace and is setting a precedent for how gaming software should evolve–in freedom. The source code released totals over two (2) million lines of source code and over 20,000 high quality textures and thousands of 3D objects.

Welcoming the news, Free Software Foundation executive director Peter Brown said, “This is a unique opportunity for the free software movement and the emerging free gaming field to accelerate the production of free games and 3D worlds. We recognize the importance of gaming and the current dominance of proprietary gaming software, so today represents a significant breakthrough from which our community can benefit.” The FSF has published more information about the scope of today’s release, and suggested ways for developers to get involved

Vianney Lecroart, Chief Technology Officer of Winch Gate says, “The Free Software community often has a difficult time finding great graphical assets that they can use in their own projects. We are sure that the thousands of textures and 3D objects we are releasing under the CC BY-SA will help a lot of Free Software projects.”

Winch Gate intends to incorporate certain code changes and enhancements into the official version of the Ryzom game. All code developed outside Winch Gate’s in-house development staff will be thoroughly reviewed to ensure quality standards, stability and security. In order to engage and foster growth in the Ryzom project, Ryzom will have a group of community managers who can manage patch submissions and feature requests. Support will continue to be given for the official Ryzom software only, with third-party projects unsupported by Winch Gate.

Initial projects will include bug fixes and porting to operating systems such as GNU/Linux and Apple Mac OS X. Timeframes for these enhancements will vary depending on the scale of the project and the project team. The level and world data associated with Ryzom will not be released as free content and their use will remain exclusive to players of the Ryzom game.

The source code and additional information will be available from the Ryzom Core Development Portal.

The Ryzom’s free media assets are available from Ryzom’s Asset Repository.

About Ryzom
Ryzom is a Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing or MMORPG Game set more than 3.000 years into the future, on a living, evolving virtual world: beautiful Atys, where after creating your own personal avatar you will guide it through this strange fantastic planet to uncover its mysteries.
The game boasts a unique science-fantasy setting, a distinctive and artistic visual style and a sophisticated plot based upon the conflict of two mysterious supernatural powers. The storyline was awarded “Mmorpg.com Best Story” award. Gameplay is highly adaptive to your personal preferences and the actions/skills system is remarkably unique, sophisticated and profound.
Ryzom Ring is the proprietary innovative free expansion that brings MMORPGs to a new level. Ryzom Ring allows you to create your own role-play and RPG Adventures on the world of Atys.

About Winch Gate
Winch Gate Properties Ltd is the developer and publisher of the massively-multiplayer online science fantasy role playing game Ryzom since 2009. Former employees from Nevrax joined the company to continue to work on Ryzom.

For more information contact:
Vianney Lecroart, Chief Technology Officer
vl@ryzom.com
irc: #ryzom on irc.freenode.net

Links
Announcement
MMORPG Ryzom
Free Software Foundation’s GNU Affero General Public License
Ryzom Core Development Portal
Ryzom’s Asset Repository

Thanks for rettichschnidi from the lgp IRC channel at the freenodes server for the news.

Avaneya is a science fiction FOSS game exclusively for the GNU/Linux platform.
It focuses on social justice, human rights,city building, adventure, strategy, economics and sustainability amidst a Martian planetary setting in the future.

This project was started 8 months ago by Kip and expected to be finished within 3 years.
This is a very unique game project because of several things :

1. Avaneya will be released under the GPLv3 license and the content of the game under the Creative Commons, thus making it free for all.
Kip the man who started the project is very passionate about free software, he just couldn’t go against his believes by closing his game and surrendering to the “dark side”.

2. Avaneya will be compiled exclusively for the GNU/Linux platform.
Kip doesn’t want to lock the users in chains of the non-free OS’s like Windows or MacOS, thus he won’t compile Avaneya to run on those platforms.
although because Avaneya is free software other ports might be made by other people.
This reminds me of other developers who developed AstroMenace, the GNU/Linux version is free and the source code is available under the GPLv2, but the Windows version costs money.
Funny enough that even as the source code is free none compiled a free Windows version of that game.
“Since we consider it unethical to encourage people to use non-free software, it is unlikely that the primary maintainers will undertake such an endeavour. However, it would also be unethical to deliberately design it in such a way so as to hinder porting to non-free platforms. Thus, since Avaneya will rely on portable libraries, it shouldn’t be unreasonable for someone in the community to do this if they do not share our values.

3. Avaneya will offer a new economic model, the single player campaign will be free, but in order to be able to play online at the official servers you will have to subscribe, which costs money.
Some people have tried to make a living out of FOSS games, while this is more then possible with programs and GNU/Linux distributions, with games it was always challenging.
There was one small company named “Sixth Floor Labs” which made a space shooter and offered to release it under the GPL for $39960, but the project failed because the game wasn’t better then what we already had released as FOSS, and the amount of money they asked was ridiculously high for their game.
Avaneya on the other hand will try a different approach, the game will be fully freed under the GPLv3 but the online play on the official servers will cost money via subscription.
There already were topics about this issue on some forums (can you make such model economically viable ?, what keeps the users from forming their own free server and play there ?), so it would be very interesting to see in practice.
Some who prefer not to challenge the status quo, argue that commercial free software, especially with respect to games, is not sustainable. One of the goals of the Avaneya project is to prove otherwise and we are hell bent on doing this

4. Avaneya is very wide game in terms of gameplay and might not fit into a single category like “RTS” :
The philosophy that drives Avaneya is to assist users unlearn some things, learn other things, and enjoy the process of transition.
Avaneya will combine elements of a science fiction real time strategy, adventure, and some of those of the classical city building and management genre. The setting is on the Martian surface.
The environment will aim to be rich, three dimensional, and possibly even based on real topographical data obtained from the Mars Global Surveyor’s orbital laser altimeter. NASA has provided the data into the public domain (that is, not copyrighted) and in a free format. They chose deliberately not to store it in a proprietary format in order to “ensure the long-term viability of the data”. A technical issue, however, is whether the spatial resolution will be sufficient to render it useful for Avaneya.
A major distinguishing characteristic of Avaneya with respect to traditional RTS and city building / management games is the sense of awareness the user experiences of externalities in game play.
In other games, it may be possible (even encouraged) to bulldoze large amounts of natural capital to accommodate the expansion of a city. Through the perspective of GDP, strictly an income sheet, this may appear beneficial to your society.
Viewed through the perspective of the GPI as a net balance sheet, however, one is left with a different impression of very costly ramifications. Bulldozing your natural capital would have deferred greater costs than those immediately amassed by mortgaging them into the future.
The dumbing down of our perception of reality, which is ubiquitous in the software entertainment industry, is necessary, for among other reasons, to accommodate the limitations of finite computing machinery. Nevertheless, if we tell a lie loud enough and long enough of this sort, we may eventually find ourselves strangers to the reality we were born into.
George Box once noted that all models are wrong, but some are useful. Avaneya aims to be useful.

There is a lot to be expected from Avaneya, read their FAQ for more info and stay tuned for the interview with Kip and updated on this wonderful project !

Links
Avaneya
Avaneya FAQ

The FREE GPLed Arena FPS game Nexuiz from Alientrap has going trough some major changes …and it doesn’t seems good.

The founder of the Nexuiz project with many of it’s major contributors agreed to “sell” their domain and GPLed sources to IllFonic, LLC.
While the GPLed Nexuiz will remain free the “New” Nexuiz (which is developed for the consoles) will be closed source.

From the IGN article :

Illfonic Brings Underground Arena FPS, Nexuiz to Console Gamers
Cult futuristic based shooter coming to consoles in 2010.

March 2, 2010 – LOS ANGELES – Independent developer and publisher, IllFonic, announced today its plans to launch the futuristic arena first-person shooter Nexuiz across downloadable console platforms in 2010. Originally developed by Alientrap Software as a free open source shooter in 2005 for the PC, Nexuiz has been downloaded by over 4 million unique users. IllFonic’s remake of Nexuiz for console gamers features a new Victorian influenced art style that is simultaneously futuristic and sophisticated.

“Since its launch in 2005, Nexuiz has become a cult hit with hardcore arena FPS players from around the globe”, said Chuck Brungardt, President of IllFonic. “With its unique setting, new features, and slick ranking system we are looking forward to bringing Nexuiz to a new community of console gamers.”

“IllFonic is not only introducing Nexuiz to an entirely new set of gamers, but also completely updating the graphics for the next generation while staying true to the gameplay refined over the years through open source development”, said Lee Vermeulen owner of Alientrap Software and creator of Nexuiz.

For centuries the Kavussari and Forsellians have waged a galactic war. Over time the two races entered into treaties with the Herald Accord, a union between different cultures in the galaxy. Even though peace settled across their planets, the seething hatred between the races kept the fire of war simmering under the fragile truce. Sensing their newest members could spread war throughout the galaxy; the Herald Accord gave the Kavussari and Forsellians a choice. Pit their warriors against each other in the arena rather than on the fields of war, or face total annihilation. The Nexuiz was formed, a series of battle arenas on the home planets of the Kavussari, Forsellian and the ruined planet of Atavirta.

Nexuiz is a fast paced Arena first-person shooter with extremely competitive game play made specifically for consoles. The game will feature a mutator system that allows players to change the rules of the match; as players rank, new mutators become available for them to use. Leader boards are designed for social networking, letting players feel more engaged with the community.

Nexuiz features a heavyweight soundtrack from artists including Flying Lotus, Dam Funk and Trisector. On launch Nexuiz will feature multiplayer modes including Team Deathmatch and Capture the Flag. New games modes, models, and maps will be available as downloadable content post release.

IllFonic will be showcasing Nexuiz at this year’s Game Developer Conference in San Francisco.

For more information on Nexuiz, go to www.nexuiz.com or www.illfonic.com.

About IllFonic:
IllFonic, LLC, was founded in 2007 by musician Raphael Saadiq, engineer Chuck Brungardt, and game designer Kedhrin Gonzalez. IllFonic is committed to delivering AAA games digitally to consoles and PC at an affordable price. IllFonic utilizes many avenues in pop culture to cross brand its products in film, television, sports, music, and clothing. With offices in Los Angeles and Denver, IllFonic has built a team of artists, developers, producers, and musicians that believe providing fun game-play means conveying the highest level of visual awe, an immersive environment and a sick soundtrack. For more information on the company, go to www.illfonic.com.

About Alientrap:
Alientrap Software was founded in 2002 by Lee Vermeulen and is an online community of international game developers. They are currently working on their second title, Capsized, for release to console and PC platforms through digital distribution.

Here is what Kedhrin Gonzalez the Lead Designer and Co-Founder of IllFonic, LLC has to say about that :

Hello all,

My name is Kedhrin Gonzalez, Lead Designer and Co-Founder of IllFonic, LLC. I know a lot of you in this community have a lot of questions as to what is going on with the recent announcement.

Before we get started, I’d like to forward you guys the official press release -> http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/107/1073381p1.html

Here is some press recently put up from Shogun Gamer -> http://www.shogungamer.com/news/preview … ect-nexuiz

You can view higher resolution screen-shots we released last night on gamespot -> http://www.gamespot.com/ps3/action/nexu … ow;thumb;3

So after we put the site up at Midnight MST (-8:00), I got on the #nexuiz IRC chat room to see what some of the concerns you guys in the community had. I’ll try my best to address as many questions as I can.

Firstly, I’d like to mention who I am. I’ve been involved within the independent community since 1997. I started off with Quake and moved my way through mod communities, eventually getting involved with independent full games – then getting into professional game development. I fully understand and can relate to the concerns you guys have about this project and how this effects the game you love and have worked on for so long. Some of you may have heard of my personal project ‘Quake 10 Year’ I was working on in 2006. With that said I want to support you guys as much as I can. Let me be very clear that it is not our intention to snuff the GPL Free Nexuiz out in any way.

IllFonic was started 2 years ago by myself, Charles Brungardt (President) and Raphael Saadiq. When we first started our studio, we focused on making a game called ‘Ghetto Golf’. This game is still in production, using Unreal Engine 3 as its backbone. Our team includes many Quake based developers – including Paul ‘Echon’ Jackson as our Lead Programmer (Author EGL Quake 2 engine and admin of Quakedev.net), Forest ‘LordHavoc’ Hale (Author DarkPlaces and huge contributor to GPL Nexuiz), Chris Holden as our Lead Artist, who started his professional career working on the Quake 2 Extremities mission pack. After playing Nexuiz, seeing it grow, I saw this project as being a great milestone for us to open our publishing arm to independent projects. Nexuiz has achieved a lot of great things, which you guys should be very proud of. This is the next chapter in the achievements you guys have accomplished.

Let’s be very clear on some specific bullet points.

- We’ve worked out the deals with Alien Trap and Dark Places for our version of Nexuiz. All parties are very supportive and eager to get behind bringing this to the console. I’m not the person to talk to about Legal stuff but we are definitely working together.

- Think of this Nexuiz as a 100% separate entity from the Nexuiz you guys know and love. The game play in our version of Nexuiz is very similar. However, in order to properly port it over to consoles we’ve tweaked a few things here and there – we want to make sure this is a different project (yet still similar) out of respect for your version of Nexuiz. There are no plans at this time to make content we make, including source code, open to the public. Please keep in mind we are spending a lot of money on this project, my team and I have been slaving away on this for the past 2 months – working 12+ hours 7 days a week in order to get it to where it is. We are very passionate about this project as well.

- I know this will come as a shock to some of you. I apologize for us having to keep this in the dark from you guys for so long. Some of you felt offended by this project being kept in the dark. Let me personally say this was not our intent. If anything, we want you guys to feel great about the things we are doing. We had to keep things in the dark until we locked in the rights from Dark Places and Alien Trap.

Here are some perks for you guys with what this project will bring.

- We are using a Licensed version of Dark Places. With that, a lot of the tweaks LordHavoc is doing will be brought to you guys in the engine. These include a lot of performance boosts, features, etc. Although right now the focus is getting this project running and looking great on consoles, there are a lot of things he will be able to trickle down into the GPL version of Nexuiz. Please note: not everything will be brought over but some will.

- We will be talking about the community and game you’ve developed over the years to Press and within our marketing material. It is even mentioned on the new web-site, which will be growing over time. We have this web-site as Nexuiz.com because we are launching a commercial product. Please keep in mind there will be a lot of new players, press and more coming to this web-site for information about our version of Nexuiz. The GPL Nexuiz is still linked on this web-site. This is necessary for the commercial marketing of the project. Our projections show you guys will actually get more players in the GPL version of Nexuiz through all of this than not. I know it feels like you guys are in danger of losing your community, but I trust you will see you are not. In time, I believe firmly you will see the benefits from this.

- AlienTrap is not empty handed in our deal. As much as I’d love to recommend things, it is not my place to suggest what you guys do with your version of GPL Nexuiz or AlienTrap. Concerns such as those should be directed at AlienTrap and not IllFonic.

Ok, let’s get into what exactly this project is…

The Name: We decided to keep the name ‘Nexuiz’ for this release because the audience coming to the console version of Nexuiz will mostly be new to the game. There is a great divide amongst the new FPS Console crowd born out of the explosion of recent mega-hit FPS games on consoles. I can’t mention here other mods and independent games turned into commercial games, but I’m sure some of you guys could name quiet a few. In my MOD days, it was always a dream to get your work picked up by a studio and turned into a commercial game. I know it’s not like that for all of you. Some of you pride yourself on your work and proving that an independent scene can still exist. Our version of Nexuiz is targeting console players only right now. I cannot go into specifics about my speculations, but a lot of great things are possible for you guys out of this.

Console: Some press reported we are targetting the Wii. This is not true. There is no way this game could be played on a Wii without drastically changing the game…. We have no plans for a Wii release at this time. With thumbstick play, what makes Nexuiz great can be lost. (I cannot discuss what consoles right now) Nexuiz is very fast paced, and if you play GPL Nexuiz right now on PC with thumb sticks – you will be dominated most of the time. There are no plans for Console Players and PC Players to be playing against each other at this time. No Mouse and Keyboard support will be available on the Console. . We want to capture that twitch game play still. Nexuiz is one of the fastest Arena FPS games out there. We want to make sure that vision is transferred over to Console game play. But, with that some things need to be adjusted. With console games, some players expect certain things and we have to adapt to those needs. While Nexuiz is a PC arena game These changes will be announced soon.

Artistic Revamp: The art in the new version of Nexuiz is done by a small team.We are 3 programmers, 1 Artist, 1 AnimatoHello all,

My name is Kedhrin Gonzalez, Lead Designer and Co-Founder of IllFonic, LLC. I know a lot of you in this community have a lot of questions as to what is going on with the recent announcement.

Before we get started, I’d like to forward you guys the official press release -> http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/107/1073381p1.html

Here is some press recently put up from Shogun Gamer -> http://www.shogungamer.com/news/preview … ect-nexuiz

You can view higher resolution screen-shots we released last night on gamespot -> http://www.gamespot.com/ps3/action/nexu … ow;thumb;3

So after we put the site up at Midnight MST (-8:00), I got on the #nexuiz IRC chat room to see what some of the concerns you guys in the community had. I’ll try my best to address as many questions as I can.

Firstly, I’d like to mention who I am. I’ve been involved within the independent community since 1997. I started off with Quake and moved my way through mod communities, eventually getting involved with independent full games – then getting into professional game development. I fully understand and can relate to the concerns you guys have about this project and how this effects the game you love and have worked on for so long. Some of you may have heard of my personal project ‘Quake 10 Year’ I was working on in 2006. With that said I want to support you guys as much as I can. Let me be very clear that it is not our intention to snuff the GPL Free Nexuiz out in any way.

IllFonic was started 2 years ago by myself, Charles Brungardt (President) and Raphael Saadiq. When we first started our studio, we focused on making a game called ‘Ghetto Golf’. This game is still in production, using Unreal Engine 3 as its backbone. Our team includes many Quake based developers – including Paul ‘Echon’ Jackson as our Lead Programmer (Author EGL Quake 2 engine and admin of Quakedev.net), Forest ‘LordHavoc’ Hale (Author DarkPlaces and huge contributor to GPL Nexuiz), Chris Holden as our Lead Artist, who started his professional career working on the Quake 2 Extremities mission pack. After playing Nexuiz, seeing it grow, I saw this project as being a great milestone for us to open our publishing arm to independent projects. Nexuiz has achieved a lot of great things, which you guys should be very proud of. This is the next chapter in the achievements you guys have accomplished.

Let’s be very clear on some specific bullet points.

- We’ve worked out the deals with Alien Trap and Dark Places for our version of Nexuiz. All parties are very supportive and eager to get behind bringing this to the console. I’m not the person to talk to about Legal stuff but we are definitely working together.

- Think of this Nexuiz as a 100% separate entity from the Nexuiz you guys know and love. The game play in our version of Nexuiz is very similar. However, in order to properly port it over to consoles we’ve tweaked a few things here and there – we want to make sure this is a different project (yet still similar) out of respect for your version of Nexuiz. There are no plans at this time to make content we make, including source code, open to the public. Please keep in mind we are spending a lot of money on this project, my team and I have been slaving away on this for the past 2 months – working 12+ hours 7 days a week in order to get it to where it is. We are very passionate about this project as well.

- I know this will come as a shock to some of you. I apologize for us having to keep this in the dark from you guys for so long. Some of you felt offended by this project being kept in the dark. Let me personally say this was not our intent. If anything, we want you guys to feel great about the things we are doing. We had to keep things in the dark until we locked in the rights from Dark Places and Alien Trap.

Here are some perks for you guys with what this project will bring.

- We are using a Licensed version of Dark Places. With that, a lot of the tweaks LordHavoc is doing will be brought to you guys in the engine. These include a lot of performance boosts, features, etc. Although right now the focus is getting this project running and looking great on consoles, there are a lot of things he will be able to trickle down into the GPL version of Nexuiz. Please note: not everything will be brought over but some will.

- We will be talking about the community and game you’ve developed over the years to Press and within our marketing material. It is even mentioned on the new web-site, which will be growing over time. We have this web-site as Nexuiz.com because we are launching a commercial product. Please keep in mind there will be a lot of new players, press and more coming to this web-site for information about our version of Nexuiz. The GPL Nexuiz is still linked on this web-site. This is necessary for the commercial marketing of the project. Our projections show you guys will actually get more players in the GPL version of Nexuiz through all of this than not. I know it feels like you guys are in danger of losing your community, but I trust you will see you are not. In time, I believe firmly you will see the benefits from this.

- AlienTrap is not empty handed in our deal. As much as I’d love to recommend things, it is not my place to suggest what you guys do with your version of GPL Nexuiz or AlienTrap. Concerns such as those should be directed at AlienTrap and not IllFonic.

Ok, let’s get into what exactly this project is…

The Name: We decided to keep the name ‘Nexuiz’ for this release because the audience coming to the console version of Nexuiz will mostly be new to the game. There is a great divide amongst the new FPS Console crowd born out of the explosion of recent mega-hit FPS games on consoles. I can’t mention here other mods and independent games turned into commercial games, but I’m sure some of you guys could name quiet a few. In my MOD days, it was always a dream to get your work picked up by a studio and turned into a commercial game. I know it’s not like that for all of you. Some of you pride yourself on your work and proving that an independent scene can still exist. Our version of Nexuiz is targeting console players only right now. I cannot go into specifics about my speculations, but a lot of great things are possible for you guys out of this.

Console: Some press reported we are targetting the Wii. This is not true. There is no way this game could be played on a Wii without drastically changing the game…. We have no plans for a Wii release at this time. With thumbstick play, what makes Nexuiz great can be lost. (I cannot discuss what consoles right now) Nexuiz is very fast paced, and if you play GPL Nexuiz right now on PC with thumb sticks – you will be dominated most of the time. There are no plans for Console Players and PC Players to be playing against each other at this time. No Mouse and Keyboard support will be available on the Console. . We want to capture that twitch game play still. Nexuiz is one of the fastest Arena FPS games out there. We want to make sure that vision is transferred over to Console game play. But, with that some things need to be adjusted. With console games, some players expect certain things and we have to adapt to those needs. While Nexuiz is a PC arena game These changes will be announced soon.

Artistic Revamp: The art in the new version of Nexuiz is done by a small team.We are 3 programmers, 1 Artist, 1 Animator and 1 Designer right now (Full-time In house) and have a motion capture animation system. Our characters/weapons are modeled by Art Bully Productions (http://www.artbullyproductions.com). Keep in mind our team is extremely small. What you’re seeing is the work from this team, and the hired backing of Art Bully Productions and a few freelancers in 2 months. I am very proud of our team and what we’ve pulled off here for the alpha test. And yes, this is running on a console. We made the content a more Victorian elegant Sci-Fi style. More information and content will be revealed over the course of development.

What’s Next:

This is clearly a post directed at you guys specifically. I cannot reveal too much about the game right now other than what has been released. I wanted to let you guys know that we do listen to you. We are not some big corporate mega company coming in who can’t understand where you are coming from.

GDC 2010

This announcement was intended for our build up to GDC this month. At GDC, we have a booth on the floor, here we will be showing press the game and doing a full announcement of the project. Lee Vermeulen and Forest Hale will both be with us during our Press, party and more at GDC. We are very excited to reveal this project to the public and get their hands on the alpha test we have to offer.

In the screenshots, you are seeing 2 character models of the 2 Factions in Nexuiz. The level they are playing on is ‘Strength’ with a new face lift and slight design modifications. The weapons you can see in the screen shots are the Machine Gun, Hagar, Nex, HLAC and Shotgun. There are a lot more things in production, but this is where we are so far.

I am sorry I cannot go into legal matters about our situation. I hope you guys enjoy the version of Nexuiz we are creating. We will be announcing more information soon, as well as putting our official IllFonic site back up soon.

I’d like to invite you guys to follow us on Twitter and Facebook (look up IllFonic). Also, you can add me personally on myspace via http://www.myspace.com/kedhrin where i post updates as they come from press, events, etc.

I will try to check back on this forum periodically. I am still very busy but wanted to take the time to introduce myself, IllFonic and what we’re doing. I expect there to be a tidal wave of questions asked when I post this. So please don’t be offended if I’m not able to get to them all and not in a timely manner. We’re still crunching for GDC, we want to make sure this looks as great as it can and we bring as many players to Nexuiz as we can.

Thanks,

Kedhrinr and 1 Designer right now (Full-time In house) and have a motion capture animation system. Our characters/weapons are modeled by Art Bully Productions (http://www.artbullyproductions.com). Keep in mind our team is extremely small. What you’re seeing is the work from this team, and the hired backing of Art Bully Productions and a few freelancers in 2 months. I am very proud of our team and what we’ve pulled off here for the alpha test. And yes, this is running on a console. We made the content a more Victorian elegant Sci-Fi style. More information and content will be revealed over the course of development.

What’s Next:

This is clearly a post directed at you guys specifically. I cannot reveal too much about the game right now other than what has been released. I wanted to let you guys know that we do listen to you. We are not some big corporate mega company coming in who can’t understand where you are coming from.

GDC 2010

This announcement was intended for our build up to GDC this month. At GDC, we have a booth on the floor, here we will be showing press the game and doing a full announcement of the project. Lee Vermeulen and Forest Hale will both be with us during our Press, party and more at GDC. We are very excited to reveal this project to the public and get their hands on the alpha test we have to offer.

In the screenshots, you are seeing 2 character models of the 2 Factions in Nexuiz. The level they are playing on is ‘Strength’ with a new face lift and slight design modifications. The weapons you can see in the screen shots are the Machine Gun, Hagar, Nex, HLAC and Shotgun. There are a lot more things in production, but this is where we are so far.

I am sorry I cannot go into legal matters about our situation. I hope you guys enjoy the version of Nexuiz we are creating. We will be announcing more information soon, as well as putting our official IllFonic site back up soon.

I’d like to invite you guys to follow us on Twitter and Facebook (look up IllFonic). Also, you can add me personally on myspace via http://www.myspace.com/kedhrin where i post updates as they come from press, events, etc.

I will try to check back on this forum periodically. I am still very busy but wanted to take the time to introduce myself, IllFonic and what we’re doing. I expect there to be a tidal wave of questions asked when I post this. So please don’t be offended if I’m not able to get to them all and not in a timely manner. We’re still crunching for GDC, we want to make sure this looks as great as it can and we bring as many players to Nexuiz as we can.

Thanks,

Kedhrin”

Some-Guy asked IllFonic, LLC this question :

Is there any chance that some artwork/code could be opensourced, maybe something like how id has done (release, after a while opensource the code) ?

And got this answer :
Right now releasing things to the public is uncertain. There are a lot of things related to the SDK’s for the consoles, etc. that do not allow for GPL usage. You have to keep in mind the content we are creating is a lot different than the content made for GPL Nexuiz. I know you guys would love to see it there. I just cannot give you a definitive answer on this right now.
In other answer he said :
At present we have no plans to change the Nexuiz name or distribute our content to the GPL Nexuiz.

Also they would contrebute parts of their code to the GPLed Nexuiz project :
I’m from the open source community. I know all about it, and where you guys are coming from and why you’re making the points you are. However, what we are doing is not open sourced. Yes this is a commercial project. Things are done differently. We’ve made up our minds on a lot of things. I want to discuss why we’re doing things specific ways where I can. Some things we can shift on that aren’t a big deal. Some things we cannot. That’s just how it is. I know there are hardcore, gun-ho open-source people in this community who pride themselves on being involved with a Free Game. I respect them I do, but at the end of the day I want to give players a great experience and support developers where I can. I cannot make everyone happy.

That’s why I keep saying we’re separate entities. We are not touching GPL Nexuiz in a bad way. But the benefits you guys will see from our development will be on the tech side. Game Design changes and features are my design and part of this new Nexuiz. There are a lot of things that will be coming your way that we have been working on with LordHavoc on the engine. You guys will see these changes and it will make your experience better on GPL Nexuiz.

If you’re concerned about you getting a gain from this deal because you contributed so much – IllFonic is not responsible for that.

…We have many things planned for the community existing, including giving away some of our hard work on the source code – for free, crediting the original community in the credits (as supplied by the community) as well as Beta Invites and potentially free copies of the game. These are things I can talk about and want to talk about. As well as much much more, including features, how we work, what our work flow is etc…The texture pack may not be relevant as most textures that could be used for BSP are rather simple. Almost all of our textures are made for custom unwraps, some are tiling but I don’t see how you could use them without a massive global revamp of all your assets (like what we’re doing). The player models may be possible – keep in mind when we acted these animations out we kept in mind the armor on our character concepts. So they may not be too good. However, we do have a shit ton of extra mocap animations that do require animations. We can also potentially offer tutorials on how to use the new animation system (which allow for upper and lower body blends as well as other improvements). This is further down the road, however.

About the legality of this move the main community contributors / project managers and IllFonic, LLC keep their silence as it’s under NDA.
But other FOSS enthusiastic had what to say…and it’s still doesn’t sounds good…

[First of all, a disclaimer: I’m nobody. I don’t play Nexuiz regularly, I can’t claim to be a member of this community, I’m not a developer, nor a contributor of any kind. I have no affiliations to anybody related to Nexuiz.

I’m just a guy with some understanding of the issues regarding the Nexuiz relicense and a hobby-level interest in FOSS and software licenses. I’m also part of a fellow game community (Tremulous) so I can empathize with you guys.

I’d like to share my knowledge. I’m hoping it will clear the air. I’m putting some time and thought into this so please read it through at least once. (If you don’t have the time, I’ve marked key ideas so you can skim through.) Thank you.]

1. IS WHAT HAPPENED LEGAL?

What makes up Nexuiz, the game:
* The engine (Dark Places).
* The game data (artwork, maps, models, textures, sounds etc.)
* The name.

1.1 IS TRANSFERING OWNERSHIP OF THE ENGINE AND DATA LEGAL?

Yes.

The engine and the game data fall under copyright law. Since Illfonic claims to have signed contracts with certain legal entities regarding the engine and game data, it automatically means (in order for the contracts to make sense) that the legal entities they signed with were the sole copyright holders for their respective stuff (source code, artwork etc.)

It has been mentioned above that SVN access to the Dark Places engine source code was conditioned by assigning all copyright to Forest Hale or Alien Trap (the company). That would make Forest Hale/Alien Trap and ID Software (the original developer) the sole copyright holders. Also, it has been mentioned in this thread that Illfonic got in touch and secured rights from the relevant copyright holders for the game data (maybe all of it, maybe just the parts that interested them).

If all that is true, it means that Illfonic now has a legal right to the engine and the game data. Of course, that may mean lots of things. The terms of the contracts are unknown; there may be more (or less) involved than full copyright transfer. There may be just licensees, with certain rights.

Nevermind. What it means is that Illfonic got a copy of the engine and data with which they can do as they please.

Note: If something slipped by and there are pieces of code or artwork for which Illfonic doesn’t have the rights, the copyright holders for those pieces may raise some legal claim. That is pure speculation without any proof. Occam’s Razor suggests that Illfonic will have taken all precautions. Then again, there’s human error, laziness and stupidity. If any of you wishes to investigate further, do so.

1.2 IS TAKING OVER THE “NEXUIZ” NAME LEGAL?

Yes.

Names/brands fall under trademark law, not copyright. To have the rights to a trademark, you have to register it, and you have to actively protect it, in order to be able to claim rights to it and not lose those rights by being idle about it.

AFAIK, Alien Trap owns a trademark for “Nexuiz”. Presumably, they have transferred it to Illfonic (or otherwise permitted them to use it, possibly exclusively). That means that Illfonic has a legal right to the name “Nexuiz”. You, the community, have none. You have a moral right, sure, but I’m afraid that doesn’t count, legally.

2. WHAT HAPPENS NOW?

2.1 WHAT HAPPENS TO THE NAME “NEXUIZ”?

The trademark owner gets to decide who can and who cannot use the name. I have no idea what Illfonic intends to do, but please understand that as the trademark owner they could very well require everybody else to simply stop using “Nexuiz” dead cold. Even more, as a commercial company they will be forced, to at least some extent, to aggressively protect this brand they now own, from their competition.

If that happens, the community won’t be able to use it anymore. They will have to find another name. And Illfonic will be able, legally, to make sure it’s not too similar a name. Sorry. You have no choice in the matter. So you might as well stop proposing that Illfonic give up the name or let you use it. It. Won’t. Happen.

Of course, I don’t know what will happen. Since Kedhrin talks about a “GPL Nexuiz” it might hint that the community may be permitted to keep on using the name, at least for a while. Again, it might not.

Worst case scenario: the game you know and love as “Nexuiz” will have to be called something completely different in the future. Live with it.

2.2 WHAT HAPPENS TO THE ENGINE AND GAME DATA?

Nothing. Yes, that’s right.

Why nothing? You have to understand how licensing works.

A person (or other legal entity, such as a company) creates something (code, artwork, etc.) In most countries, the creator automatically becomes the copyright holder. You can also aquire the copyright from the holder (presumably that’s what Illfonic did).

The creator has full rights to the stuff they created, and other people have none. So, in order for other people to be able to do anything with that stuff, the creator gives them a license which allows them to do certain things.

The creator can give how many licenses he wants, and they can be different licenses for different people.

In this case, Alien Trap and ID Software already gave the world at large the Dark Places engine under the GPL license. Then they also issued another license (or transferred copyright ownership altogether, which would mean they stop being the holders) to Illfonic.

But the interesting thing is that copies of the stuff that was already distributed under GPL cannot be “recalled”. You cannot go back and say that you want all those copies destroyed, returned, require people to stop using them or developing them etc. Same goes for the game data.

Basically, there’s absolutely nothing anybody can do to stop the community from picking up from the last official release of Dark Engines and the release of the game data and keep on going.

Look at it like this. Nexuiz, as you all know and love it, is now twins. One brother goes to live with uncle Illfonic and one stays at home. They both start from the same place. They are identical. But they will evolve in different ways in the future. How — that depends on you, the community, vs Illfonic. Each party will take their twin in a different direction.

You haven’t lost anything. Illfonic cannot take anything from you. If their game becomes a success and yours dissapears it will be mainly because of what you do, not about what they do. Here’s hoping they both will do great.

2.3 WHAT HAPPENS TO THE WEB SITES AND DOMAINS?

Unfortunately, the trademark owner controls all kinds of uses of the brand. This includes domain names. This means that, worst case scenario, all domains that contain “Nexuiz” and are deemed undesirable by Illfonic can be asked to give it up or get sued otherwise.

Nexuiz.com is currently owned by Lee. I assume it will be formally passed over to Illfonic representatives. They own the website now and Kedhrin has already mentioned some of the plans they have for it. Be content with the small type mention of “GPL Nexuiz”. IMHO, it will be gone at some point.

alientrap.org is also owned by Lee, and the website too. This means the forum, the website etc. You, the community, have to ask yourselves what ties remain between you and Alien Trap. Because, should the worst come to pass, you may discover that you are now strangers on a stranger’s website. This means that an important part of what makes the community (the website) may cease to exist.

I’m not saying it will happen (soon, or ever). But it can and it might. You have to face reality.

3. WHAT SHOULD THE COMMUNITY DO

Please note that these are just mere suggestions.

* Keep the goodwill going between the community and Illfonic/Alien Trap. If for nothing else but for the fact that you can do a lot of harm to them and them to you. But it doesn’t need to be like that. They don’t have to wipe you out, and you don’t have to call them names and say they “stole” things.

* Identify your de-facto leaders. Then see which of them will take responsability in these trying times and are willing to actually lead you.

* Start thinking of a new name. Pick one ASAP.

* Get organized. You will need a domain name, a website, and a forum first of all. Get cracking on moving the forum contents from Alien Trap to your own site and your own install of phpBB (if Alien Trap will be willing to assist you). Start migrating contents (downloads, screenshot galleries etc.) to the new site. Then you will need all kinds of developer tools (code repository, bug tracker etc.) Here’s a suggestion: you can start at SourceForge, which offers all of these things (and more) for free.

* Learn from what happened here. If you don’t want this to happen again, make sure in the future that no single person or group of persons has full control. I don’t know if the Nexuiz community is big enough, strong enough and dedicated enough to put together a legal entity to represent their interests in the future. I’m talking about an organization, an association, a foundation etc. with a publicly elected board of directors. There are other FOSS projects that do this. It certainly would simplify legal matters and make sure the community is represented from now on properly. Or, you can put your trust in a handful of people and hope for the best. There’s even more FOSS projects that do that.

Thanks for reading.

The Nexuiz community however wrote an open letter to IllFonic, LLC :

To whom it may concern,

We, the Free, Open Source Nexuiz community, are writing this letter to all the people out there, who actually care. On the 1st of March 2010, we were all struck by very unexpected and sad news: Lee Vermeulen, the founder of our beloved open-source game “Nexuiz” had sold (//maybe: “given away” is better here) the domain “nexuiz.com” and licensed the title “Nexuiz” to the Colorado-based video game developer “Illfonic”. Illfonic is currently working on a first person shooter to be published under the name “Nexuiz” for consoles.

The founder of Nexuiz, Lee Vermeulen stopped contributing regularly to the project four years ago. The Nexuiz project evolved through contributions of countless developers, artists, musicians and player feedback into a game that is perceived as one of the most successful open source projects of its genre, making its way into official benchmarks of Phoronix and GPU producer NVIDIA.

(//is that (the NVIDIA part) really true? Heard about it, too lazy to verify myself atm.
// Nexuiz is part of the Phoronix benchmark suite. Can’t comment on nvidia having their
// own benchmark that uses nexuiz
// FruitieX: Yep, Phoronix part is sure, dunno about NVIDIA, really need confirmation for that

###Lee Vermeulen claimed he was confined by a Non-Disclosure-Agreement which he and “Illfonic” signed.//I’d say this is irrelevant because an NDA is something you agree to anyway.)

The community was told that there was something “great” about to happen to the main domain “nexuiz.com”. It was more than a shock for most people in the community to discover what happened on the 1st of March 2010: a group of software developers named “Illfonic” revealed that they are planning a console mockup of the game the Nexuiz community created with lots of love and passion over the years. Besides making use of community-developed code that was licensed under the GPL, giving rise to debates about license violations, Illfonic also intends to publish its console game with exactly the same title, while claiming it would be a good thing for the Nexuiz community to happen*.

//*= “be a good thing for tho nexuiz community as a whole”?
//*=it turns
It turned* out that some of the main developers had been asked if they would object to parts of their code being commercially re-used, and they gave their permission to such re-usage. None of the developers were informed that the commercial re-usage of the code would involve the commercial usage of the name “Nexuiz”.

On March 3rd in 2010 Kedhrin Gonzalez – “Lead Designer and Co-Founder of IllFonic, LLC” posted on the official Alientrap Nexuiz boards: “I know this will come as a shock to some of you. I apologize for us having to keep this in the dark from you guys for so long. Some of you felt offended by this project being kept in the dark. Let me personally say this was not our intent. If anything, we want you guys to feel great about the things we are doing. We had to keep things in the dark until we locked in the rights from Dark Places and Alien Trap.”

After the immediate uproar from the community, suggestions arose as to how a peaceful coexistence could be realised.* To avoid confusion it was suggested that Illfonic uses any kind of derivative name or a suffix in connection with the title “Nexuiz”. Any approaches on part of the Nexuiz community to reach a compromise were rejected and Illfonic refused to cooperate in any way:
//*This sentence does not flow well. Suggestion: After the immediate uproar, the community brought forward measures that could enable a peaceful coexistence.

“Unfortunately, I have nothing else to say on this thread. I’ve responded in a professional format, way more personal than I usually do in a public forum these days trying to connect with. Unfortunately, I will not listen…” // ( …to demands or snappy comments.”) I’d not quote this, as it suggests there were snappy comments, which I think weren’t (considering the circumstances…). // Don’t start editing any quotes here, leave that part in IMO. //I was referring to the entire quote :o)//well. I think we should not be the judge’s of this. I suggest we move around this issue by supplying urls to what we refer to in the end of the statement and let reality to speak for itself.

Illfonic also made clear that there is no intention of supporting Nexuiz – which Kedhrin Gonzalez began referring to as ‘GPL Nexuiz,’ – in any way. The only benefits for Nexuiz as a result of this deal will ostensibly be game engine updates by Forest “Lord Havoc” Hale, the developer of the Darkplaces engine who also has signed a Non-disclosure agreement with the Illfonic team.

When the thread started to get a high Google rank for the term “Illfonic Nexuiz”, it was locked by Forest “Lord Havoc” Hale, who still is a moderator of the Alientrap forums. This happened on request of Kedhrin Gonzalez. This is a short quote from the official Alientrap developer IRC channel, to show what the situation is about:
// the topic is now unlocked and Lord Havoc said he was also annoyed (for the lack of a better word) by the happenings in the thread. Meaning the reason was not solely Kedhrin’s wish. Of course, it does not mean Kedhrin’s wish was in any way more justified and the paragraph should reflect the immoral way the thread locking was done.

” locked that topic at Kedhrin’s request
-.-
Seriously?
yes
he said it’s the top result on google and looks like it will never end
Meh I think i’m — Meh.
he doesn’t mind people making other topics for it, just that one is becoming too much of a headache for him
Tell him to come to this channel, clearly you’re talking to him from somewhere.
so now he gets to moderate gpl nexuiz forrum?”

All this happened while Kedhrin was still claiming to respect the community. As a free software project, Nexuiz has always been a place of open-minded and respectful people and a place where rational discussion and free speech was held important. Abusing its connections to Alientrap forum moderators to limit or stop the ongoing discussion about the Illfonic project in this way is perceived as an affront and open gesture of disrespect by the Nexuiz community. // “towards the Nexuiz community” sounds better imo? mmh, not sure – I wanted to express that the Nexuiz community perceives this as an affront, not that the general public perceives this as an affront towards the Nexuiz community…
Please feel free to visit the thread that was locked at www.alientrap.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=6043 and find out for yourself if the nature of the discussion deserved this kind of treatment.
//mmm not quite happy with that wording. neither am I. Im pondering this.

This leads to the question, how we, the Nexuiz community, are supposed to feel great about all this? If Illfonic had good intentions like they claim, why did they not arrive and interact with the community much earlier and more openly? Why didn’t Illfonic discuss its plans with the Nexuiz community, the people that have made Nexuiz what it is today both through playing and creating? Without all the work and free time many people have contributed to this project, it would have never become what it is today. Yet, despite all reaffirmations of Illfonic’s goodwill, there was no room for a single compromise on any issues that were raised constructively from the Nexuiz community.

That being said, it is not surprising that the Nexuiz community is shocked and offended by the recent developments. The name “Nexuiz” has a value, which has been built up by community members like divVerent, esteel, Samual, [-z-], Morphed, FruitieX, MrBougo, tZork, mand1nga, Merlijn, C.Brutail and many more. Not to mention the collaborative brainpower of the community that went into this project in the form of feedback, suggestions and discussions about gameplay and game content. These things are of course lacking a ‘papertrail’ of commit logs in svn and such, yet they contribute to the value of the name Nexuiz.

The Nexuiz community objects to this value being sold without giving anything back to the community in return. Illfonic clearly stated there will be no contribution art-wise to the open-source Nexuiz. All the community can hope is that improvements to the Darkplaces engine, made by LordHavoc while porting it to the consoles under contract with “Illfonic”, will be useful on the PC platform. Not a big reward for the harm the whole action has done to the “free software Nexuiz” community.

The Nexuiz community also objects to the name being taken from its project. Having two games published under the same name is just confusing. In case Illfonic refuses to change the name of its project in even the slightest way, the Nexuiz community will be forced to use a different name for the Open Source Nexuiz project for no comprehensible reason.

We hope YOU are interested and willing to support our cause. Spread the word as much as you can on the web, the international* media and of course to your friends, because friends are actually what makes a community what it is.
//* Really? “media” would be enough in my opinion. Unlikely that the NY Times will pick it up.

As the direct communication with Illfonic seems to have failed, we really hope the pressure of publicity will be able to turn things around for the better as a last resort. The game is NOT published yet, so effectively Illfonic should still be able to get out of this situation by adding at least a suffix or subtitle to the game title.

Don’t get this wrong, we don’t think the console version of Nexuiz is a bad idea in general and we are not against Lee Vermeulen, LordHavoc and other parcticipating developers making a little profit out of Nexuiz. They have done great work for the community in the past and still today – Nexuiz would not be what it is without their achievements and contributions. We would like to express our respect and gratitude about their fantastic work.

// This next paragraph is confusing IMO, maybe leave out?
We are just disappointed and sad about the way things were handled. On one side, the Nexuiz developers, emphasize the community and the Free Software roots they are all coming from, and speculate about respect for all the members, fans and freaks around the Nexuiz scene, and in the end little to no respect is shown for what this community established over all the years. Effectivley hijacking its fine label for a commercial console port without telling a single word, until it was all set.

What are the Nexuiz community’s suggestions?
//Th

We suggest that both games don’t share exactly the same title. This would only result in total confusion and would definitely not only harm the community, but also the “commercial Nexuiz” (or FeeNex™, as it is now referred to by some community members), since the marketability of products suffers from such ambiguity. Confusion could be easily avoided by adding any kind suffix or subtitle to the title “Nexuiz”.

Also, we suggest to establish a portal site on nexuiz.com where both games are represented in an equitable way. It only has to be a single page giving the visitor the choice to visit either the commercial console port or the original ‘Free, Open Source Nexuiz’. That way confusion would be easily avoided and the connection between the two projects would become more transparent for the customer. Also, Illfonic’s Nexuiz for console would profit from the publicity and the image of the name Nexuiz all the same.

On behalf of the Free Software Nexuiz Community.


Although it seems legal as the contributors/community gave the rights to the Nexuiz project founders to do what they want with it, even to fork it under a different license, I still think it was morally wrong to do so on the back and hard work of the community.
It was done before with the Ogre3D engine which changed it’s license from GPL to MIT – it was legal, but was it moral ?

Alientrap did not sell the domain name, that’s why I put it in quotes…they simply gave it away.
But they did sell the GPLed source code in the sense that it now could also be used us closed source for their new project.
The original source code will off course remain free as it is.
But what they did sell is the community – which is worse.

I am 100% sure that if they made the community vote for it – the majority would not agree to sell their code.
It’s immoral and against the GPL spirit in the way that Alientrap sells them the code which was made in a big part by the community – and IllFonic, LLC don’t want to give the free project a reasonable share of their work.
They won’t contribute the art that Nexuiz (GPL) is so badly needs, nor major parts of their code – they will only contribute small parts of the engine code – which is pathetic.

I wouldn’t object if the agreement stated that they could use the GPLed code and obeying to it by releasing their game (code and art) as GPL.
Remember that they are developing their game for the consoles – so they have really nothing to lose.
I wouldn’t object if they built their game by themselves from the ground us – I buy proprietary games and see nothing wrong with it.

But when you take from the community – you must give back, if not by license (GPL) then by your morality.
I’m not that mad about IllFonic, LLC – it’s their business to develop and sell games, but Alientrap which basically sold the community – that’s something else.

The question should be how a GPLed project could come to the state of basically changing it’s license and forking the project ?
How can we be sure that the projects we contribute to, won’t fail us in this way ?
And why they let IllFonic, LLC to use the code without the obligation to give anything back ?
I’m not sure all the contributors to Nexuiz were aware of this step – I just can’t believe that all of them would agree to such move.

It’s indeed a sad day that raises much more questions and directly related to other FOSS projects.

It would be interesting to see what the future holds for this wonderful FOSS project and for the fork by IllFonic, LLC .

Links :
Nexuiz (GPL)
Alientrap
“New” Nexuiz
IllFonic, LLC
IGN article about the “new” Nexuiz
Alientrap Thread about Nexuiz Case

Today I thought about writing about Blood and it’s remakes, freegamer already did it first (yesterday) but I hope I could add some new stuff he didn’t write about.

I’m a huge fan of Blood, yeah that old 3D shooter from 1997.
I think that Blood is the best game that used the BUILD engine, and even today with it’s outdated graphics it is one of my favorite 3D shooters of all times.

Luckily I am not the only fan of this great game and there are several fan made games/mods inspired by blood.

1. Blood: The Flesh Game :
As you can guess from the name this is a flash version of blood which runs on all OS’s.
Although it’s just a demo of what never became a full length game due to lack of time, it was praised by the fans.
Blood : The Flesh Game is an adventure game based on Blood and Blood 2 in which you are play the role of Caleb at a 2d platform shooter.
The game is closed source but I think that if you would like to finish developing this demo into a full game you can contact Tamás Tóth (at adatjoe [at] vipmail {dot} hu) and he will help you in your quest and maybe even release the source (who knows).

FleshScreamshot

2. ZBlood :
ZBlood (sometimes spelt Zblood or zblood) is a game that runs on the ZDoom engine, which is a modified version of id Software’s Doom engine aka id Tech 1 . ZBlood itself is a modified version of the Doom II WAD, Blood TC. However ZBlood includes many new weapons, levels and features and is currently being updated while Blood TC is no longer being worked on.
As id Tech 1 was released under GPLv2 and works with GNU/Linux, this mod should also work on GNU/Linux.
The original BUILD engine is more feature heavy then id’s 1 engine, so I consider it a downgrade in terms of technology.

ZB_003

3. Transfusion :
Transfusion uses the DarkPlaces engine in order to recreate Blood in full 3D.
Darkplaces is a very modified and improved Quake engine.
Currently Transfusion is a death-match game like Quake 3 Arena and Unreal Tournament (but with much less impressive graphics), but it’s a Free software (FOSS) and still under heavy development.
The goal is to recreate Blood so there is much work to be done still.

action01

dranzbb6-02

As you can see the first screenshots is the death-match and the second one is the actual (still incomplete) single player levels.

4. HYPERTENSION :
Now we finally came to the last recreation or even reincarnation of our beloved game Blood.
HYPERTENSION is based on the GPLed Hyper3dge which is was developed from the EDGE engine which was based on id tech 1.
HYPERTENSION is feature live-action videos with amateur actors, changing soundtrack based on events in the game, many new and old weapons and enemies, classic levels a brand new campaign and much more features !

While the game itself is not yet FOSS (this could be discussed) it will be out very soon and will have a native GNU/Linux client !

shot140

shot119

There is much to expect…

Links :
Blood
Blood Wiki
Blood: The Flesh Game
ZBlood
Transfusion
HYPERTENSION
Interview with TDGMods on Hypertension

Adonthell is a FREE RPG under GPLv2 or later license.
The game itself is currently very simple and have a nice 2d graphics and simple gameplay.
Adonthell 0.3 aka “Waste’s Edge” is a short demo game that was meant to show what the game engine is capable of.
With Adonthell 0.4 which is still in active development a lot of things have changed and added.
The game itself wasn’t exciting to me (at least not version 0.3) , but the development tools (of 0.4) are priceless.

Adonthell 0.4 is not yet available as a package and needs to be compiled from source – but for the tools it has, compiling is surely worth it.
As the title said, Adonthell is not just a game, Adonthell is a game engine and also a collection of tools which makes the game, like :

* Charedit for creating characters and creatures
* Dlgedit for creating conversations between player and NPCs
* Mapedit for creating the game world
* Questedit for creating the quest tree
* Itemedit for creating items

Those tools are still bound to the game engine and currently could only be used at Adonthell BUT without too much work they could be converted as “stand alone” and even used in other game project.
All those tools are bound to each other and integrated BUT also could be used separately – quests and inventory aren’t a must for game creation while map and characters are.
But they could be integrated with each other as tools, meaning that you could put a script in Dlgedit that would add things to the inventory and even update your quests when a specific dialog option is chosen by the player.

As you might know I am slowly developing a draft for a text game which if ever be done I will release under GPLv3, more on my little project I might write later.
So for my project I chose the Dlgedit tool for dialog trees, and it’s remarkable.

Dlgedit lets you easily create a visual dialog trees and add python scripts to them, the Adonthell developers even wrote a guide on how can Dlgedit be used – which is very impressive.
On that note their wiki is fairly detailed and holds much information for the developers

As I’ve mentioned Adonthell 0.4 and it’s tools needed to be compiled from source, it wasn’t easy at all – but the developers were extremely helpful and guided me step-by-step what I needed to do.
They also updated their wiki with new dependencies we discovered on the way and also fixed the code so it would actually compile on my machine.
I’m sure that now it is much easier to compile Adonthell with it’s tools.

My hopes is that other free game projects will use Adonthell’s tools and convert them to be used with their projects or even as “stand alone”.
I think they are very useful and in Dlgedit’s cease very unique – I didn’t see such a tool anywhere in the FOSS (Free/Open Source Software) world.
There were in fact such talks at PARPG forums (which is a FREE cRPG in development) but it’s still undecided.

This time I will not include screenshots for this game as version 0.3 doesn’t represent the current status of the development and my attention was not on the game, but on the tools – tools other developers can use for their projects.
You see, people seems to judge from first sigh, and the screenshot from version 0.4 (yes, only one screenshot – and not a good one) could harm people’s opinion about the game while the tools are good and useful in other projects.

Links
Adonthell Project Page
Adonthell Wiki
Dlgedit

Adonthell IRC channel could be found at #Adonthell at the Freenodes server, the developers are usually there and they are very helpful.