Engine Reimplementation Day!


This is a invitee post yesteryear user Hythlodaeus, discussing GPLed video game engine reimplementations, in addition to presenting several projects related to the topic.


I idea I should get got some fourth dimension to beak over inwards item ane shape of projection that has been sometimes featured here, on FreeGamer, in addition to is mostly quite pop inwards the FLOSS gaming world: engine rebuilds / re-implementations.

Rather than existence wholly master copy projects or Intellectual Property-free clones of to a greater extent than pop games, engine rebuilds (also known colloquially as “engine clones”) are essentially an endeavor to completely reconstruct in addition to better upon the features of a given master copy game, without going trough the problem or replacing master copy game fine art assets in addition to without creating a novel whole, free-of-restrictions in addition to copyrights IP. Thus, engine rebuilds simply reproduce the rules, mechanics, in addition to game logic of the master copy game, spell soundless being dependent on another shape of master copy data.

These projects oft arise every bit a shape of preservation: the demand to ensure in addition to expand compatibility of a proprietary game out of its master copy borders, in addition to to brand certain the target game volition non solely travel able to run on futurity systems, but also to travel ported to dissimilar platforms where it wasn't originally available, without damaging the profits of the master copy developers or breaking whatever shape of copyright. Better than that, engine rebuilds are a non bad means to fully bask many video game classics inwards a purely free-as-in-freedom environment, spell soundless rewarding the master copy developers yesteryear purchasing the master copy game. As of now, I get got 4 particular projects nether my radar which I would similar to beak to yous about.

VCMI

VCMI is an engine re implementation of New World Computing's turn-based strategy classic, Heroes of Might in addition to Magic 3. It aims to replicate the master copy game, in addition to innovate many novel features that volition larn inwards a to a greater extent than pleasant in addition to customizeable experience, every bit good every bit providing a platform for scenario building, modernistic making, in addition to fifty-fifty the creation of completely novel games.

VCMI has also been noted for its portability exterior of the desktop figurer environment, alongside some developers exterior of the psyche dev squad plainly creating an Android port, in addition to other similar mobile versions.

With the recent issue of version 0.90, in addition to bordering closer in addition to closer to the 1.0 release, VCMI is the brightest hope for the huge Heroes of Might in addition to Magic fan community which soundless holds HOMM3 every bit its all-time favorite game inwards this long-running series, in addition to whose official releases in addition to reeditions tend to run poorly on modern operating systems, including Windows.

FreeSynd


The minute projection is the Syndicate reconstruction known as FreeSynd. For those that are also immature to get got ever played the master copy game, Syndicate was a dystopian organized criminal offense simulator, inwards which the actor controlled a squad of cybernetically enhanced zombies (!!!) inwards a elbow grease to accomplish consummate global domination.

Syndicate was known for its fast-paced, guns-blazing gameplay, and, afterward many years since its master copy release, it's soundless highly regarded every bit ane of former British developer Bullfrog's best titles. FreeSynd is currently on version 0.6, alongside updates oozing out slowly, ane time inwards every few months.

The goal of the developers is to replicate the master copy game every bit it was, when released, alongside farther upgrades in addition to improvements coming solely afterward version 1.0 is finished.

At its electrical flow form, many missions tin travel fully played, but the game soundless has many bugs in addition to much to is left to travel made. However, every bit a fan of the master copy game, I soundless felt it was my duty to beak almost it in addition to peradventure motivate some of yous to lend some assist to what promises to travel a fantastic game. Naturally, yous volition soundless require the master copy game information to run FreeSynd.

NXEngine


Next upwards nosotros have NXEngine. So far, I'm actually surprised how come upwards this ane escaped most people's attention, particularly at the FLOSS gaming sphere. NXEngine is none other than a free, opened upwards source recreation of the legendary freeware game Cave Story. Now the master copy game is non solely freeware, it has already been ported to every bit many platforms yous tin milk shiver a stick at (including GNU/Linux). However the game creator, Daisuke Amaya, AKA “Pixel”, ever requested people inwards accuse of porting the game to never part the source code, due to the bargain previously signed yesteryear Pixel to distribute the game commercially. This, however, did non halt programmer Caitlin Shaw from rebuilding the whole game engine from scratch, requiring solely for the user to download a re-create of the master copy freeware version, in addition to extract all fine art in addition to music assets from its bowels.

As of the electrical flow version of NXEngine (1.0.0.4), the game runs flawlessly, fifty-fifty to a greater extent than swiftly than the freeware original. Having played both inwards their entirety, I tin tell the solely slight inconsistencies going for NXEngine, are a couplet of enemy laid on patterns which are slightly different, in addition to barely touching game sense inwards whatever way. All inwards all, it's Cave Story, running free-as-in-freedom. And that's a non bad achievement yesteryear itself.

OpenXcom


Finally 4 our 4th project, nosotros have OpenXcom. Many of yous mightiness travel familiar alongside the game it is based on, every bit it was considered many times every bit one of the best PC games ever made. OpenXcom is a total reconstruction of this non bad tactical simulator, ane time once to a greater extent than aiming for expanded compatibility in addition to a to a greater extent than stable, smoother gameplay, along alongside many improved features in addition to modernistic back upwards planned along the way.

If yous disliked the Firaxis remake, peradventure yous should proceed an oculus on this one. It's pure, classic X-COM alongside all the oil edges trimmed, in addition to fifty-fifty at its 0.45 release, it already seems similar an impressive achievement. If yous feared for the futurity of X-COM, fearfulness no more. OpenXcom is here.

That's all for now! I'm certain at that spot are other non bad engine rebuild projects around there, many of which get got been discussed hither on FreeGamer previously. Feel gratuitous to post your ain suggestions or comment on this matter.

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