LinuxWorld has gone hardcore today, with a review of Linux Civilization: CTP by Rawn Shah and an article about Linux gaming in general by Joe Barr. The extensive Civ: CTP review explains gameplay basics, the technology advances, wonders of the world, units, and game strategies, as well as the author’s opinion on what Civ’s release means to Linux’s future. Barr’s article begins by stressing how critical a large gaming library can be to the success of an operating system, stating “in feedback to my articles about the migration of the desktop from Windows to Linux, the most popular reason for hesitation given has been a reluctance to give up games.”Barr also includes a few of my mundane thoughts on the state of Linux gaming, as well as Scott Draeker’s and James Hills’ (who led a panel on Linux gaming during a recent Linux expo).
David Penn has written an article for Linux Journal concerning the state of gaming under the Linux platform. The article, which includes quotes from id’s Graeme Devine, Loki’s Scott Draeker, and Transmeta’s Dave Taylor, takes stock of the industry’s rising interest in the open source OS by pointing out its strengths for both development and consumer use. Thanks to the Game Tome for pointing this out.
Computer Games Online has interviewed id Jedi Master John Carmack about the upcoming Quake 3: Arena. Carmack discusses the flexibility of Q3’s code base, how having a freely available compiler to use with Q3’s interpreted logic code will make mod development easier, the appeal of Q3’s arcade deathmatch play, weapons balancing, single-player bots, and the negatives of a global ranking system. Its one of the more substantial Carmack interviews within the last few years, so be sure to give it a read. Saw this at sCary’s (who I owe a Taco Bell trip at this year’s QuakeCon).
Chris Jang wrote in to announce the alpha release of the Mortal Kombat-inspired side-scrolling fighting game Kombatant. Kombatant currently includes roto-matted video captures of the author to demonstrate how easily new characters can be inserted into the engine. The source is available at http://pweb.netcom.com/~cjang/kombatant_alpha.tar.gz.
Following last night’s successful interview session, Loki Entertainment Software released version 0.2.4 of their opensource MPEG player library SMPEG. SMPEG, which uses Sam Lantinga’s Simple DirectMedia Layer library, plays mpeg layer 3 audio, mpeg-1 video, and mpeg system streams. Grab the new source release here.
Have questions or concerns? Tomorrow is the time to voice them, and “The Linux Show” is the forum. We welcome your feedback, and appreciate this opportunity to respond live. Please help spread the word. Thank you!
Listen at Ttalk.com or follow along in IRC at irc.pinnatel.com:6665 #linuxshow.
Michael Basler has updated the FlightGear Installation and Getting Started guide, which is the definitive document for setting up and getting the hang of the premiere Linux flight simulation. The guide covers the flight model, HUD, instrument panel, and potential difficulties as well. You can also grab the Flight Gear source version 0.6.1 from here.
4Front Technologies are working on drivers for the Vortex 1 and 2 chipsetsunder Linux through their OpenSound package. We are also working with othergroups on supplying more open-source Linux drivers, which we hopefully willmore formally announce[sic] soon.
There are no definite plans or release dates scheduled for these drivers,however, and there are no guarantees.
DGen/SDL, the Linux Sega Genesis emulator, version 1.15 is now available. Changes include:
- Battery save ram support. Now save games in most games that use it work.
- CPU core hot-swap. Now, if you compile both StarScream and Musashi in, you can toggle between them in-game!
- Joystick mapping is now configurable from dgenrc.
- Major speed tweaking; it’s about 10-20% faster than v1.14!
The source tarball is located here.
Over at the Linux Game Development Center, they’ve posted an interview with Gizmo3D author Anders Moden. The interview discusses the conceptual basis behind the 3D API, differences between it and other 3D SDK’s available, and future features. It’s pretty informative, so be sure to take the time to drop by and read it.
Richard Jones’ 3D racing game XRacer, which is still in the early stages of development, has reached version 0.29. XRacer now supports importing user-created 3d-modelled scenery around the tracks and has some game physics changes to create the illusion of faster velocities. The 0.29 source tree is available at http://www.annexia.org/freeware/xracer-0.29.tar.gz.
Xian “Disruptor” Antkow, master of curvy surfaces and Lord of the One Called Q, updated his .plan with news of id Software server ip changes in preparation for the release of the new build of Q3Test. Here are the new ip’s if your DNS hasn’t updated yet:
126.96.36.199 == www.idsoftware.com / ftp.idsoftware.com
188.8.131.52 == www.quake3arena.com / www.quakearena.com
184.108.40.206 == www.glsetup.com
Also, Blue updated with word of two new Q3 screenshots at Gamers Central taken with new player models on the map Q3Test1. The first shows the Q1 marine taking damage from Steed’s new female player model, and the second is of the Sgt. player model.
Freshmeat updated with word of the Advanced Linux Sound Architecture driver’s version 0.3.2 release. ALSA currently supports a diverse range of sound cards, and is working to overtake the OSS kernel API in quality and features. To use ALSA 0.3.2, you need to download the new driver source, library source, and utilities.
For the past couple years when talking to chip makers about new 3D features, 3D texture maps would always come up, and I would have to mutter something like: “I think it is a good thing, but I can’t give you a really awesome example of using it. 3D Noise functions. Stuff like that.”
I have the awesome example now: Lighting.
Through the entire development of Q3, I have been wanting to do dynamic lighting of the world differently. Many of the efficiencies gained by Q3’s new map format result in larger and larger lightmaps while it reduces polygon count. That meant that even small dynamic lights may force a lot of work to generate new lighting textures.
He also has posted his worklog again which is, as usual, very interesting to read so I suggest you check it out.
Catch President Scott Draeker, Lead Programmer Sam Lantinga, Programmer Michael Vance and others from the Loki team on the next live episode of “The Linux Show” on Tuesday, June 29. Listen live on www.TTalk.com, call in on 888-591-tech, or chat on IRC.PINNATEL.COM:6665 #linuxshow.The program will start at 6:00 pm pacific, 8:00 pm central, 9:00 pm eastern time, 1:00amGMT. Join the fun!
- Config files, save games etc all stored in ~/.lxdoom, instead ofneeding you to make a dir for LxDoom stuff yourself. LxDoom is slowlybeing more “UNIXified”. Thanks to
Vicente Aguilar for that patch.
- Fixed the glitches at the start of sounds playing. Thanks to
Steve VanDevender for pointing out thesilly error.
- Removed the old framerate dots, since judging the framerate from them wasawkward at best. Instead there is a new cheat code, IDRATE, which togglesa display of rendering stats including frame rate, visplanes in view, andsuch.
- Made the numeric keypad separately usable from the keys they duplicate,configurable on the in-game key setup screen, hopefully. Someone sentpatch in to me, can’t find the email right now though. Another thing to do:-).
- Minor portability improvements.
You can download version 1.3.7 from ftp://ftp.linuxgames.com/cph/lxdoom-v1.3.7.src.tar.gz.
GameStalker version 1.03 was released today… changes in this FPS server browser include favorites support, full server refreshing, and MOTD support. The Linux source code is located at http://gamestalker.zero-ping.com/gamestalker-1.03-gtk-src.tar.gz for your perusal and compilation.
Jeremy Katz has written a review of Loki’s Linux Civilization: CTP port at LinuxPower.org. The review contains a general overview of Civ: CTP and a half-dozen screenshots for your perusal. Katz summarizes his CTP experience with the following statement:
Civ: CTP is a game in which it is easy to get engaged and forget about the big things in life: homework, food, sleep, talking to other people…