Tribes 2 Linux Client Port Update

December 29th, 1999 by Crusader

In an interview conducted with Voodoo Extreme, Dynamix programmer Rick Overman notes that the OpenGL-based engine for Starseige: Tribes 2 has been ported to Linux. Overman also states that Tribes 2 will likely be released in the spring of next year.

Cliff B on UT Tourney Settings

December 29th, 1999 by Crusader

Epic MegaGames’ Cliff Bleszinski made a .plan update earlier today to provide Epic’s suggested Unreal Tournament tourney settings:

If you’re running a UT competition I’d strongly suggest using these settings:

Official Epic Games Tourney Settings

One on One
Weapons Stay- OFF
Game Speed- DEFAULT
NO BOTS (duh)
Game Setting- HARDCORE
Frag Limit- 20
Time Limit- 10

Suggested 1 on 1 Maps (my personal opinion)
Malevolence (to be released in upcoming free Bonus Pack)

Oh, and if you haven’t downloaded the free CTF maps that Digital Extremes created then you’re seriously missing out.

These are 2 top notch maps created by 2 of UT’s best level designers and they’re above and beyond commercial quality.

I’d love to see more servers running these maps online!!!

Shit I’d love to see more servers! Yeah!

Bomb ô Bomb Ext2 Review

December 29th, 1999 by Crusader

Lee Anderson sent in a link to his new review of the Bomberman clone Bomb ô Bomb for Ext2. The review compares Bomb ô Bomb to its predecessors and its contemporary (ClanBomber), explains the nuances of Bomb ô Bomb’s unique gameplay features, examines multiplayer support, and provides details on installation and the inherent extendability of the game.

OMIGG v0.0.06

December 29th, 1999 by Crusader

The Cubesoft development team wrote into the Linux Game Development Center mailing list to announce the release of OMIGG version 0.0.06, which is a multi-genre game project. Changes:

  • Now loads models
  • Code cleanup
  • Modified code to use Vectors, instead of older, cruder methods
  • Added in code to move and rotate models. Still needs some work though
  • Added bugs.txt to help keep trach of where there are probelms
  • Fixed some bugs
  • Linked models with camera
  • Made the models more configurable
  • Modified docs

OMIGG v0.0.06 Download:

UT Source Notes

December 28th, 1999 by Crusader

Brandon Reinhart of Epic MegaGames commented on Slashdot today with more information on the upcoming source code release from parts of the Unreal Tournament Linux port, stating, among other things, that there will likely be a tarball release tomorrow. Reinhart also provides brief descriptions of each shared library whose source will be made available, as well as what brought about the decision to make this code public:

The bottom line is this: I like to play kick ass games. The Linux port of UT is not kick ass. I don’t have the time to make it better, so instead of having it languish on my harddrive I’ll give it out to anyone who wants it. You don’t have to do anything with it. You could take it and write cool stuff and if you want you could contribute it to me. Its all voluntary.

XShipWars 1.28

December 28th, 1999 by Crusader

Version 1.28 of the space combat strategy game XShipWars is now available. Changes in this release include:

  • Outline of player vessel when cloaked or not clearly visable, needs tohave viewscreen_marks turned on.
  • Connections list exporting on server.
  • Better icon and date representations throughout client, including theuniverse list window and properties dialog.
  • AI objects no longer detect disconnected players at HOME objects(those with internal hide from connections flag set).
  • Exported scores file header fixed, was not deliminating fields properly.

XShipWars 1.28 Download:

Gamasutra ’97 Game Cheating Article

December 28th, 1999 by Crusader

Tomas Andrle sent in a link to a 1997 Gamasutra, a site devoted to providing detailed game development resources, article concerning security in online gaming, which is relevant considering the recent Quake cheating controversy. The article explains how security influences design considerations, offers real-world examples of broken game security (including Diablo and Quake), and possible courses of action to head off cheating after a game has shipped.

Gem Drop X 0.7

December 28th, 1999 by Crusader

bill wrote in to announce the release of Gem Drop X version 0.7, which was ported to the Simple DirectMedia Layer from the original 8-bit Atari puzzle game Gem Drop. Changes include:

  • Removed Xlib graphics code and replaced it with Simple DirectMedia Layer calls.
  • License changed to GPL.
  • Made level 14 a little easier.
  • Renamed documentation to have “.txt” extensions.
  • PPM files converted to BMP (since SDL loads them natively).
  • Compile-time options reconfigured (defaults to use sound and joystick).
  • Command line options now in the form of “–option”.
  • Fixed a mouse movement control bug.

Gem Drop X 0.7 Source:

UT Source Release Update

December 28th, 1999 by Crusader

Epic MegaGames programmer Brandon Reinhart made a .plan update today regarding the source release for portions of the Unreal Tournament Linux port. The GreenMarine has decided to place the open portions of the source under the Artistic License, and will be coordinating patches via SourceForge:

I’m back from visting relatives and I’ve been rolling on theLinux open source stuff. I’ve got my project approved withSource Forge. Once I get everything set up, I’ll announcethe URL but I’m sure the sneaky will be able to find the page.

I’ve chosen the Artistic License. I feel that it allows moddevelopers a lot of freedom with the open code, while not puttingEpic into any weird positions with the undisclosed part of theengine.

I plan on open sourcing the following libraries:

In addition, the release archive and rcs will include thepublic headers for the other engine libraries (core, engine, etc).Some of the above libraries compile both under Linux and Win32.I’ll write up some specific guidelines for contributing authors.For example code that is contributed to the GlideDrv librarymust compile under both Win32 and Linux.

Now, I need a few recommendations. Can anyone recommend a goodGUI to cvs? Or should I learn the command line interface (it seemstedious, but I’m used to SourceSafe)?

The goal of this project is threefold:

1. To improve the quality of the Linux port of UT. I’ll admit thatI simply don’t have the time to spend on this port. Disclosingthe source gives everybody a chance to make the code better.

2. Strengthen the mod authoring community. Giving people morecode to play with is always a good thing. The headers will beof specific interest to mod authors. They can be used tointerface a mod with external C++ DLLs.

3. Teach Epic about open source projects. If this goes well, we’llprobably look into releasing more source in this fashion. We don’thave any plans to release the engine proper (certainly not untilall our licensees games are finished), but there are additional peripherallibraries that could be disclosed.

I think at this point I will put up an initial tarball release andfollow it up with full rcs support once I learn how. Tim is gonefor the holidays and I need to confer with him about what headersto release before I can toss out anything.

Again, I apologize for being so slow in getting this rolling. Myplate is pretty full with high priority projects.

ClanMecha 0.1.0d

December 28th, 1999 by Crusader

Neil Halelamien wrote in to announce the release of ClanMecha 0.1.0d, a 2D mecha-genre platform game. Features include:

    * Support for two players duking it out mech to mech using all of -two-different weapons (really hoping to add more later)
  • Transparent explosions and wall textures
  • Parallax scrolling background
  • Sound effects “borrowed” from ClanBomber
  • A partially working grappling hook for attaching to mechs and walls
  • Because it uses ClanLib, it can be compiled for a number of different platforms
  • Other stuff which I can’t quite remember for the time being

ClanMecha 0.1.0d Source:

Heretic 1.0.3

December 27th, 1999 by Crusader

Andre Werthmann has made version 1.0.3 of his Linux Heretic port available. Changes:

  • multiple game resolutions (-mode width height)
  • SDL version (video only; sound via pipes from other procs)
  • bug fixes in several files
  • fastx11-module changed

Heretic 1.0.3 Source:


December 27th, 1999 by Crusader

Flemming Frandsen wrote in to announce the initial release of NiL (“NiL Isn’t Liero”), a 2D multiplayer Worms-style game played in real-time. The current feature set includes:

  • Fully networked Client/Server.
  • Any number of players possible.
  • Optimized joining, now only ~20KB needs to be transfered to a joining client (used to be 3MB)
  • Pretty optimized code, without being overly ugly.
  • Nice source layout, easy to hack new features into.
  • All graphics are 32bit: 24bit color + 4bit alpha + 4bit flag.
  • The PTC lib is used so almost any graphics platform is supported (any resolution/colordepth/fullscreen/windowed)

NiL Source:

Raymond on Quake 1 Cheating

December 27th, 1999 by Crusader

Open source evangelist Eric S. Raymond submitted his views to Slashdot today on the recent Quake 1 cheating controversy brought about by the source code’s release under the GPL. ESR addresses Carmack’s solution (closed-source client verification), and concludes that:

So, far from being a telling strike against open source, the case of the Quake cheats actually highlights the kinds of biases and subtle design errors that creep into software when it’s designed for closed-source distribution and performance at the expense of security. These may be something we can live with in a shoot-em-up, but they’re not tolerable in the running gears of the information economy. Avoiding them is, in fact, a good reason for software consumers to demand open source for anything more mission-critical than a Quake game.

OpenGL X Server from Xi Graphics

December 27th, 1999 by Crusader

Xi Graphics has released a commercial (binary-only) 3D-Accelerated X server with OpenGL support. The license price for the Entertainment Edition is $99.95 (US); you can view the list of supported cards here. The server can also be ordered from Xi Graphics at

The Xi Graphics product description doesn’t list any benchmarks for the server, so it may be prudent to wait for XFree86 4.0 (scheduled for release in mid-Quarter 1 2000)to adequately gauge its value.

Yiff 2.04

December 27th, 1999 by Crusader

Version 2.04 of the Yiff Sound Server (developed for use with XShipWars) has been released. Changes include:

  • New GTK based YIFF Configuration Wizard
  • Fixed address (connect argument) parsing bug in libY2

Yiff 2.04 Source:

Command & Conquer: Open Source?

December 26th, 1999 by Marv

I’ve recieved an email from Kareem Dana, who is working on persuading Westwood Studios to release the source code to the original Command & Conquer: Tiberian Dawn in the hopes of making a Linux port available to the general public. Kareem is also looking for people to assist in the porting of the source code, if it is released. Below is the letter that Kareem sent to Westwood Studios on Dec 24th; feel free to contact him with any questions or concerns you may have.

Dear Westwood:

I would like to first applaud your company on creating the best seriesof strategy games ever, Command & Conquer. Then I would like to bring yourattention to an open source strategy for them, of which many gaming companiesare starting to use including id Software, Interplay and Parrallex (Descent &Descent II), and Loki Games (

By opening the source code to their software, these companies have increasedrevenue by appealing to an ever growing market of users who run open sourceoperating systems and others that just like to make editors and addons to theirfavorite game. There is a void for solid, fun, and exciting games in the opensource world that is waiting to be filled.

Also, opening the source of Command & Conquer can bring the Command & Conquercommunity closer together and increase your reputation as a company, becauseyou know put the community and consumer first, above all else. This hashappened with id Software, Parrallex and Interplay whom have released varioussource codes. This will revive and rekindle spirit in the Command & Conquercommunity.

Command & Conquer: Tiberian Dawn, being an old classic game has lost much ofits retail value due to age and holds little profit in the future. Opening thesource to that game, will bring in a market of millions of users who could notuse Command & Conquer before because they did not run windows or a macintosh..I can speak for a large number of your die hard fans that if the source code isreleased, we will finally purchase C&C to install it and then download thesource and compile it to start playing.

In conclusion, I would like you to consider opening the source code of thefirst game in your classic Command & Conquer series – Command & Conquer:Tiberian Dawn. Its retail value is weak at this point, due to age and openingthe source will revive the game and increase your company’s superior reputationas one that puts its customers and community first. Thank you very much fortaking the time to read this letter and I wish your company continued successin the future.

Quake 1 Cheating Revisited

December 26th, 1999 by Crusader

id Software’s John Carmack commented on Slashdot’s Quake 1 cheating thread today to clarify his reasoning behind requesting a closed-source solution to potential client abuse (concluding, “In the end, it is just a matter of making it more difficult for the cheaters”), and to provide information on the more prevalent varieties of Quake 1 client cheating.

SDL LxDoom

December 26th, 1999 by Crusader

Following his SDL Quake port, Sam Lantinga has announced the release of his Simple DirectMedia Layer LxDoom port:

I got nostalgic for DOOM after hacking with the Quake source code,and I really wanted to be able to play DOOM on the framebuffer console.

Check it out at:

The port requires SDL 1.0 ( and if you want MUS/MIDI music support, you’ll want to also get the mixerlibrary from:

Grab the latest CVS release of SDL, if you want full mode-switchingsupport on the framebuffer console.

SDL LxDoom Source:

Furthermore, version 1.0.1 of the above-mentioned mixer library has been released; the source is available from

Quake 1 Cheating Issues

December 26th, 1999 by Crusader

id Software programmer John Carmack made an evening .plan update to address Quake 1 cheating issues raised by the recent full source code release under the GPL, suggesting the creation of platform-dependent closed-source verification proxies:

There are a number of people upset about the Quake 1 sourcecode release, because it is allowing cheating in existing games.

There will be a sorting out period as people figure out what directionsthe Quake1 world is going to go in with the new capabilities, but itwill still be possible to have cheat free games after a few things getworked out.

Here’s what needs to be done:

You have to assume the server is trusted. Because of the wau quakemods work, It has always been possible to have server side cheatsalong the lines of “if name == mine, scale damage by 75%”. You haveto trust the server operator.

So, the problem then becomes a matter of making sure the clients areall playing with an acceptable version before allowing them to connectto the server. You obviously can’t just ask the client, because if itis hacked it can just tell you what you want to hear. Because of thenature of the GPL, you can’t just have a hidden part of the code to doverification.

What needs to be done is to create two closed source programs that actas executable loaders / verifiers and communication proxies for theclient and server. These would need to be produced for each platformthe game runs on. Some modifications will need to be done to theopen source code to allow it to (optionally) communicate with theseproxies.

These programs would perform a robust binary digest of the programs theyare loading and communicate with their peer in a complex encryptedprotocol before allowing the game connection to start. It may bepossible to bypass the proxy for normal packets to avoid adding anyscheduling or latency issues, but it will need to be involved to somedegree to prevent a cheater from hijacking the connection once it iscreated.

The server operator would determine which versions of the game are tobe allowed to connect to their server if they wish to enforce proxyprotection. The part of the community that wants to be competetivewill have to agree to some reasonable schedule of adoption of newversions.

Nothing in online games is cheat-proof (there is allways the devicedriver level of things to hack on), but that would actually be moresecure than the game as it originally shipped, because hex edited patcheswouldn’t work any more. Someone could still in theory hack the closedsource programs, but that is the same situation everyone was in withthe original game.

People can start working on this immediately. There is some prior artin various unix games that would probably be helpfull. It would alsobe a good idea to find some crypto hackers to review proposed proxycommunication strategies.

UT Bonus Add-On Screenshots

December 26th, 1999 by Crusader

Unreal Universe updated with Unreal Tournament screenshots from Epic MegaGames’ imminent bonus pack. The pack will contain around 6 new maps, and imported Unreal player models.

DM-Arcane Temple III Shot #1
DM-Arcane Temple III Shot #2
DM-Shrapnel II
DM-Heal Pod II

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