Bryan Willett of theMerchant Empires projectwrote in to announce that the beta-testing period for themultiplayer, web-based game of space exploration and economic competition (partlybased on Trade Wars and Space Merchant), has begun. The development serverfor the beta test is located at http://www.merchantempires.net/index.php3.
Miguel Angel Blanch Lardin wrote in announcingthe release of Arianne RPG version 0.3.9.2.Miguel states that this will be the last release for this source tree, as the projectwill be starting over from scratch. Changes include:
- A strange bug that makes player not be removed until another oneenters.
- Code under GPL license, because of an error we were working as LGPL
- Removed a crash that happens when two servers were open on the samemachine
We are also looking for C/C++ developers, graphics designer andcrystal space developers for Arianne 1.0.0.
Arianne 0.3.9.2 Source:
This release corresponds to a CVS snapshot of 26 June 2000.Note that this Crystal Space is still beta. We don’t make any guaranteesabout anything. We have done some work to ensure that it should work butthere are obviously many known (and unknown) bugs.However, personally I’m feeling reasonably confident about the stateof this release. There should be no fundamental problems with it andmany people are actually using it already now for their projects.
We are planning to release a 1.0 release in three months or so. At leastfor important parts of CS (it is likely that we will not be able to haveevery feature of CS 1.0 ready).
Crystal Space is Open Source. More than 100 people have contributed inminor and major ways. I can always use more developers. So if you feel youhave something to add to Crystal Space then mailme.
Check out http://crystal.linuxgames.com for more information and todownload the source. You can also view screenshots there. We are alsohosted on http://sourceforge.net now (for CVS and mailing list).
Crystal Space 0.16r001 Download:
- Loki has released the 4th beta of their Heroes of Might and Magic III map editor, which can be used to create custom maps forthe fantasy strategy game. It can be downloaded from:
- Canada Computes has posted apreviewof Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri andit’s expansion pack, Alien Crossfire. The article, based on the beta builds of theCivilization-esque sim, gives an overview of the game’s setting and goals.
- James Hills has produced another article for Gamespy,this one being an interviewwith Loki president Scott Draeker. The interview covers the growth of the Linux gamingmarket over the past year, OpenAL (includingthe revelation that Loki is working to establish a non-profit group to oversee the API),whether DirectX could succeed on Linux, Loki’s business system, and the requisite questionsabout the future of gaming under Linux.
TuxTyping 0.4pre2 Download:
One of the key enhancements to WarBirds is the expansion of its operating system compatibility to include Linux inaddition to its existing compatibility with Apple’s MacIntosh OS and Microsoft’sWindows OS.
“The growing popularity and installed penetration of Linux makes it a natural addition to WarBirds,” says Jay Littman,Producer at iEntertainment Network. “WarBirds has consistently set the standard for flight simulator games, and we areexcited that it is the first combat flight simulator game to offer compatibility with the Linux OS.”
Unfortunately, no mention is made in the press release or on iEntertainment’s site as to when the demo willbe available for download… hopefully it’ll make an appearance shortly.
- In an interviewwith Tech-Junkie,Imagination Technologies’ David Harold concerningthe Kyro,the new PowerVR-based 3D card, David states thatthe company aims to provide open source Linux support (thanks sCary).
- Matrox has announced their G450 chipset line; its predecessor,the G400, was supported by the Utah-GLX project after Matroxopened their hardware specs. The press release states this will continue, as Linux is listed among theofficially supported operating systems for the G450 (thanks Daryll Strauss).
More news from the shores of hell:
- Version 1.0 of Vavoom, which can playseveral Doom-engine based games ([Ultimate] Doom, Doom 2, Heretic, and Hexen), has beenreleased. Features include:
- Supports high resolutions
- Freelook, jumping, crosshair
- Limited dehacked file support (tested with Aliens TC, Batman Doom)
- Fullscreen stats in Doom
- Controls can be redefined in-game
- Doom can play demos from older versions
Vavoom 1.0 Download:
- Digital Eelinterviewed several industrydevelopers regarding the recent Doom announcement; all 11 interviewees hold court with their conceptionsof what the next id game should offer.
- After some brief controversy,Raven Software’s Kenn Hoekstraposted onDoomWorld’s forums to state that theHeretic/Hexen source code would be released into the public domain (the specific licensewas not specified), negating the Activision EULA under which they were previously released.
- Finally, from the memorabilia category, ION Storm’sLucas Davis sent Linguica twoshots of the actual chainsaw whichinspired the Doom melee mainstay, now under the ownership of Tom Hall.
Version 0.4.0 of Cannon Smash, a 3D table tennis game, has been released. This releases fixes issues with the previous source tree and adds multiplayer support. An in-game screenshot is available for viewing here.
Cannon Smash 0.4.0 Source:
Keerf of Games.Linux.com sentin notification that they’ve posted an previewof Loki’s soon-to-be-gold Soldier of Fortune Linux port. The preview (by Brian Satterfield), based on a beta build, gives a basicdescription of gameplay, along with some preemptive tips. Also, a new poll is up, asking which aspect of Q3A is most enjoyed.
Nat Kealen has re-launched the Heavy Gear News Network, a site devoted to Dream Pod 9’s Heavy Gear game universe. The new site, unlike its previous incarnation, will focus on community-furnished information and news via a message board format. One of the site’s forums is dedicated to the Linux Heavy Gear 2 port, where users can discuss items and developments involving the recently released mecha game. The site has a new domain, http://www.hgnn.net/, so be sure to update your bookmarks.
The XRally development team has released version 1.0pre2 of their overhead racing game. Changes:
- Extra points for remaining fuel at the end of a map
- Extra lives when got a lot of points
- Changes in the configure script, should help debug some problems
- Added bonus map option (maps who work as bonus stages)
- Added fuel option (sets the start fuel of the map and the impact it haves on your speed when it ends)
XRally 1.0pre2 Source:
Once again, its entropy-laden catch-up time…
- James Hills wrote in last week with a newarticle hosted atGamespy which compares Indrema’sproposed Linux-based consolesystem withMicrosoft’s Xbox (although few details of consequence are provided).
- Judecca sent in a link to theWine + NVidia + Half-Life MiniHOWTO by David McBride,which, as the name suggests, explains how to configure your Linux box to run the Win32 Half-Life clientunder WINE on system with a NVIDIAgraphics card.
- Sam Hart sent in a launch announcement forthe The Vidiot’s Club, which will include”a strong emphasis on Linux gaming”. Furthermore, the site has posted areview ofHeroes of Might and Magic III, which makes mentionof the AI’s tactical tenacity.
- Eugenia Loli fired in a link to a BeOS benchmark article in which that other upstart OS fares rather well against Linux in a series of V2 GLQuake and Quake 2 tests.
- The Cobalt Journalist linked two tutorials on Q3Xtreme.net which endeavor to explain how to install and configure the dedicated server for Linux Quake III: Arena.
- Fixed vertex fog (-x) to fog buildings and other objects
- Added multitexturing to show mech damage
- Allowed selection of Ammo Fuel Containment
- Fixed bug with binding keys to SHIFT + key
- Space Mission no longer is fogged with OpenGL fog (-g)
- Updated libraries (SDL, OpenAL, SDL_mixer)
- Other misc bugfixes
Heavy Gear 2 1.00a Download:
Ben Yoris of Hyperion Software sent in word that their site has been updated with a progress report for their Linux port of SiN, originally developed by Ritual.. The report indicates SiN is close to completion, with a beta test expected sometime next month. Also of note is that Peter Annuss is considering implementing 3D OpenAL support for sound.
Ken Silverman, once of3D Realms, has released the sourcecode to his BUILD engine,which was utilized in titles such as 3D Realm’sDuke Nukem 3D andShadow Warrior, as well asMonolith’sBlood. When requests for a BUILD sourcerelease were made in the past, Ken had stated it would be delayed until hecompleted schooling, hence the release after the more advanced Quake 1 enginewas GPL’ed. The current source is meant for compilation under DOS, althoughit opens the door to Linux ports of the above commercial titles andnew open-source projects utilizing the engine. Thanks to Martin Cracauer and Christian Sigl for the news.
BUILD Engine Source (DOS):
Loki Entertainment Software has released a demo for their mecha-based 3D tactical game, Heavy Gear 2. This is for Intel CPU-based Linux systems; system requirements can be perused here. The demo is around 64MB; a mirror list will be available here shortly.
Heavy Gear II Demo Download:
Pretty self-explanatory… programmable robots + strategic conflict:
For Immediate Release
Loki and CogniToy Partner to bring MindRover to Linux
Tustin, CA. — June 20, 2000 — Loki Software, Inc. today announces anagreement with CogniToy to bring the highly-acclaimed MindRover: TheEuropa Project to Linux gamers by early fall 2000.
MindRover is an ingenious 3D strategy/programming game that enablesplayers to create autonomous robotic vehicles and compete them in races,battles and sports. Starting with an empty vehicle, gamers add componentssuch as sensors, weapons and engines. Players wire the componentstogether and set their properties using an innovative visual programmingsystem before entering the vehicles in the 3D competitions. Gamers mayalso share their custom robots over email or through website competitions.
Our customers have proven their mettle in other games with fast reflexesand great aim,” said Scott Draeker, president of Loki. “We are nowextremely pleased to present a new challenge. Their creativity andproblem-solving skills will be called to task in this unique andaddictive game.”
CogniToy was formed in 1997. They are a privately financed independentdeveloper/publisher of “intelligent toys for intelligent minds”.’MindRover: The Europa Project” is their first product, currentlyavailable on Win95/98/NT. For more information visithttp://www.cognitoy.com.
About Loki Software, Inc.
Founded in 1998, CA, Loki works with leading game publishers anddevelopers to port their best-selling PC and Macintosh titles to Linux.Loki meets a pent-up need in the Linux community by providingfully-supported, shrink-wrapped games for sale through traditional retailchannels. Other titles from Loki include Quake III Arena, Civilization:Call to Power and Railroad Tycoon II. For more information visithttp://www.lokigames.com.
I’m pleased to announce the 7.3 release of Xconq, available at
Xconq is a general strategy game system. It is a complete system thatincludes all the components: a portable engine, graphical interfacesfor Unix/Linux/X11, Macintosh, and Windows, multiple AIs, networkingfor multi-player games, and an extensive game library.In addition to Xconq’s “standard” game, which is similar to theclassic Empire/Empire Deluxe games of years ago, the game libraryincludes games for ancient civilizations, the Peloponnesian War, theRoman Civil War, Frederician strategy, Napoleonic strategy, Gettysburgat a brigade scale, the Russian revolution, the Normandy invasion,WWII at scales from tactical to grand strategic, Beirut streetfighting, voyages of discovery, African exploration, and many others,including space and fantasy games.
As befits its emphasis on strategy, Xconq’s forte is turn-based playusing overhead views of a tiled world. The world is basicallytwo-dimensional, although varying elevations are available for gamesthat need elevation effects or line-of-sight. Xconq is especiallyinteresting for games about unusual or lesser-known strategicsituations; it is unique in its ability to model the conflicts andstrategies of any period in history.
Xconq games may include up to 126 types of units, 126 types ofmaterials (ammo, fuel, etc), 126 types of terrain, and 126 types oftechnological advances. Worlds may be up to 32,767 x 32,767 in size,over a billion cells (hexagons)! The largest map currently in thelibrary is a monster 800×320 map of the Earth. Xconq can alsosynthesize new worlds for its games.
Up to 31 sides may participate in a game, with any mix of human and AIplayers. Xconq networking is peer-to-peer, so no separate server isrequired. (Note: networking is not yet fully functional on Macs.)
To set up new types of games, Xconq includes an interpreter for a gamedesign language (GDL). While the syntax resembles Lisp, GDL is adeclarative language, where you create a game just by defining theproperties of types and objects, and then filling in tables describingtheir interactions. There are literally hundreds of propertiesavailable, and hundreds of tables relating units, materials, terrain,and advances. Xconq is capable of emulating many other strategygames, and Xconq’s generic AI includes the ability to analyze a set ofrules and to figure out (usually!) how to play it.
In addition, the game designer gets a collection of nearly a thousandgraphic images available for use in games, including unit icons,terrain tiles, and national emblems. It’s also easy to importadditional graphics content of your choice.
To help keep the both new and experienced designers from being lost inthe complexity, Xconq includes a game designer’s manual that describesall of this machinery in detail.
Xconq 7.3 represents two years of development work since the lastpublic release (7.2.2). In that time, we have rewritten the Unix GUIand made it easier to use; ported to Windows; improved the appearanceof the graphics; added a technology tree, variable-size cities,Civ-type games, active independent units, and many other features;and fixed hordes of bugs.
The Xconq home page is at
This page includes information about new versions of Xconq, screenshots,online versions of the manuals, and so forth.
There is a general mailing list, email@example.com. Thislist is for both users and developers. If you just want to receiveannouncements, firstname.lastname@example.org is available also;see the home page for information on how to subscribe.Xconq is free software, and is licensed under the Gnu Public License,version 2; see the file COPYING for more details.