Outerra forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

Outerra Tech Demo download. Help with graphics driver issues

Pages: [1] 2

Author Topic: Open Source Forever  (Read 16149 times)

MajorYokoYurik0

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 2
Open Source Forever
« on: April 15, 2010, 05:46:44 pm »

Hello!

This engine seems fantastic, and has so much potential. The work put into it is phenomenal, just by the looks of it. The fact of the matter is, there is a great lack of good open-source game engines, especially concerning wide expanses of terrain, much less whole planets. Personally, I believe this engine should be open source.

By making the engine open source, it will gain the potential to survive for a very long time, if not forever. Both open source and closed source software have the potential to fail, but open source software has the potential to survive much longer and even improve over time. The fact that it's free will be a great advantage... For instance, consider the current economical times: Games could fail just because people can't afford them so much, or a rush to release a game (rush for money) causes a poor-quality product to be released. Entire game engines and games could be overlooked just because of some fluke or another.

Consider the Quake Game Engine that's open-source. It still survives to this day, and is constantly improved. Bugs are fixed rather quickly and moreover bugs are found much quicker and more thoroughly, producing a very stable engine (and constantly becoming more so). It has so much potential, yet it still lacks the ability to render large landscapes smoothly, and it has some limitations. Nevertheless, many games have been made using the engine, most of which are still around and popular (especially since they're free and have reasonable to good graphics).

There is also the bad example of the Torque Game Engine, that is available on multiple platforms as well, but is closed source. The wonderful thing about it is that in Tribes 2, one of the main games that uses the engine, virtually unlimited landscape could be produced by smoothly integrating mirror images of the ground texture in all directions, allowing to pretty much see and go in every direction almost endlessly. The graphics were great for their time.

The game was also easily modifiable and numerous incredible mods were made, that reached toward the limits of the imagination, from teleportation, to mechas, to having the ability to construct anything you can think of in-game from pieces (lego-like... which in itself has unlimited potential, if only on a small scale usually and with plastic pieces), to so much more. Unfortunately, the Torque Game Engine is very buggy, and very poorly documented.

To fix this, large patches for the game were released from time to time. One large final patch wiped out compatibility for most of the mods, and virtually ruined much of the game. The engine in general also has a limited number of objects that can be shown at any one time (I believe somewhere around 1000). However, the game survived, and still survives. It has recently been taken up by the Tribes community, as the original master server online was shut down.

The game was revived as TribesNext, but it is still quite buggy and it's not helping the process to keep things working properly. In any case, the Engine and game had so much potential, but it was lacking and it couldn't be fixed, mainly because it was closed-source.

I believe this game engine, were it to be released open-source, could accomplish so very much... much more than all the games and game engines I mentioned combined. At the very least, if it is decided to make it closed source, in the end, when all the games that use it become "obsolete", it should still be released open-source. Just consider the fact that ROMs of ancient console game systems like Atari, Sega Genesis, and Nintendo are cycling (albeit illegally) quite a lot... they are still popular in an age where 3-dimensional photo-realism is becoming better and better.
Logged

cameni

  • Brano Kemen
  • Outerra Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6647
  • Pegs is clever, but tae hain’t a touch sentimental
    • outerra.com
Open Source Forever
« Reply #1 on: April 16, 2010, 03:47:08 pm »

Epic :)
Now actually I'm fan of releasing stuff as open source in order to prolong its life time and to let it be extended and improved by a dedicated community. I understand this is an important way for many, although I myself rather work on new and possibly also radically different things instead of improving the existing ones, as is the case here.

Also we'd like to try a different model eventually. Making a platform that is open to all developers, allowing sharing of content they create within common realms. For example the makers of various simulators could use the same world, just providing their specific game code and models. Imagine you could see various machines within the world, and you could buy or get the particular simulator in place. The world will be alive with people driving the machines.
A similar approach can be used with other game types. If not directly running the distinct game codes within one world (in zones), at least they can share the created worlds/realms, as filling the whole planet or large terrains with content is not an easy task.
Anyway, this would require a very long term support as well.
Logged

MajorYokoYurik0

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 2
Open Source Forever
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2010, 05:39:14 am »

Hmmm... that sounds very interesting, although a bit like Second Life, which is a prominent idea, but is very difficult to implement smoothly on a practical level. A persistent world is very difficult to maintain. Now on the part about somehow interfacing with other games and simulators, that sounds great, and would help bring communities together, adding to the very life-source that keeps projects going.

I know I've been trying to get Rigs of Rods(multi-simulator) working, but due to very non-standard systems of compiling and running (very scattered and all), it's been next to impossible. With some sort of standardized integration of this engine, maybe it might help some projects unite their efforts and build a better community.

It certainly is a lot of work to do so much, but again, with a supportive community, it'll become a lot easier, and significantly reduce the individual workload. If the original designers of a popular game or engine stops work, it usually doesn't end there, and is instead picked up by a community of fans and coders. For instance, even years before the Tribes 2 master servers were shut down (and there were still many people playing), there were at least 4-5 attempts by the community to remake the game, or its predecessor (Starsiege Tribes, a.k.a. Tribes 1, which is still active today). Sadly all the attempts for Tribes 2 failed, just about always due to the faults and limitations of the closed-source Torque Engine.

But the idea is that with a supportive community, games and simulators can live on for very long. Particularly ones that offer something unique or special, such as the virtually limitless landscapes offered in Tribes 2 and, to a degree, Soldner: Secret Wars. It does all sound like a good idea, but should nevertheless somehow have the ability to be changed freely, as needed over time, even if the original makers are not available (so open-source-like). Everybody has something else to occupy their time, or gets bored with something at one time or another.

I really hope this project develops into something great, no matter which way it heads! The best of luck, and hopefully all the support for this as it can handle, now and in the future.
Logged

mike4

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 7
Open Source Forever
« Reply #3 on: June 14, 2010, 04:31:39 am »

Yes, for example that would be great for Flightgear. Altough I'm convinced that GPL is the best license for OS alike Linux, I'm not so sure that's best for a Flightsimulator. To open for pirates and to restrictive for addon developers.

If you could agree on some licensing with Flightgear, this might lead to some spectacularly bright future.
Logged

Pyykkö Andrei

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 3
Open Source Forever
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2010, 01:54:30 pm »

wait how open source will be the engine it self?

For example pig told us that there is no animations or guns but will devs create stuff like that ?

Just write code by them selfs and add stuff that they need for their realm?
Logged

cameni

  • Brano Kemen
  • Outerra Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6647
  • Pegs is clever, but tae hain’t a touch sentimental
    • outerra.com
Open Source Forever
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2010, 05:32:02 pm »

Let's make it clear: the engine won't be open sourced now, for many reasons, one of them is what mike4 said.

What we are talking about is a possibility of making a sand-box simulator platform based on the Outerra engine.
This platform would be open in a way allowing developers to provide their specialized physics and systems simulation code to extend the functionality of the platform, and won't restrict them in how they want to license their stuff (+-).

It would allow creating realms, parallel world overlays so that ones can attempt to recreate contemporary Earth while others work on a futuristic or an apocalyptic setting .. you get the idea.
But so far this is just an idea.


However, we have to make money to make living and to be able to expand this engine to utilize its huge potential, so for the start we have to get it into a state when it's usable by developers producing commercial titles. We have several candidates already and we are implementing features they need.

In this situation, making this platform would be interesting for us because that may be actually the model the developers could work in. In other words, a development team could be creating their game on the platform using the platform tools - creating various game assets while using the functionality of the platform allowing to work on the game world in a distributed manner. Utilizing automatic installation and versioning of plugins containing the game functionality, and so on.

Or .. something :)
Logged

MatthewS

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 67
Open Source Forever
« Reply #6 on: June 21, 2010, 09:56:30 pm »

Quote from: cameni
We have several candidates already and we are implementing features they need.

It would be interesting to hear about what types of products these are and what new features you are implementing.
Logged

cameni

  • Brano Kemen
  • Outerra Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6647
  • Pegs is clever, but tae hain’t a touch sentimental
    • outerra.com
Open Source Forever
« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2010, 02:09:22 am »

If we are only counting those developers who already produced a game and are seriously considering the engine, it would be 3 or 4 combat simulators and a hardcore strategy game. Their development could be starting in 2011.

Those combat sims need relatively huge terrains, but that's not a problem here.
The features are everything we are doing already. Vector data support, then land classes. And the tool chain for importing these and objects and such.
Logged

mike4

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 7
Open Source Forever
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2010, 01:35:59 pm »

Good to hear that we get new cross platform games. But how about providing to opensource projects something like a free version?
Logged

cameni

  • Brano Kemen
  • Outerra Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6647
  • Pegs is clever, but tae hain’t a touch sentimental
    • outerra.com
Open Source Forever
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2010, 03:17:23 pm »

May be, may be once it's established well.

On the platform, there could be such an option: let an open source content plugins (that includes practically everything a game is comprised of apart from the engine itself) be freely available. Basically, a developer could set a price, and if it's a zero we'll still get the same % share out of it :D
Logged

Kridian

  • Jr. Member
  • *
  • Posts: 20
Open Source Forever
« Reply #10 on: August 16, 2010, 04:28:48 pm »

Quote from: cameni
... it would be 3 or 4 combat simulators and a hardcore strategy game. Their development could be starting in 2011.

Those combat sims need relatively huge terrains, but that's not a problem here.
The features are everything we are doing already. Vector data support, then land classes. And the tool chain for importing these and objects and such.

I'm hoping one of them is Bohemia Interactive.  They could sure use an updated engine. *crosses fingers*
Logged

Edding3000

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 93
Open Source Forever
« Reply #11 on: August 16, 2010, 06:49:52 pm »

Quote from: cameni
May be, may be once it's established well.

On the platform, there could be such an option: let an open source content plugins (that includes practically everything a game is comprised of apart from the engine itself) be freely available. Basically, a developer could set a price, and if it's a zero we'll still get the same % share out of it :D
With 3 or 4 (major) devlopers wanting to use your engine, is it sufficient to work on it with 2 people?
I understnad hiring people is expensive though.
Logged

InviZ

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 7
Open Source Forever
« Reply #12 on: August 17, 2010, 03:11:07 am »

Quote from: Kridian
I'm hoping one of them is Bohemia Interactive.  They could sure use an updated engine. *crosses fingers*
Yeyeye...Everybody waiting for new engine for Arma...:)
Logged

cameni

  • Brano Kemen
  • Outerra Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6647
  • Pegs is clever, but tae hain’t a touch sentimental
    • outerra.com
Open Source Forever
« Reply #13 on: August 18, 2010, 01:50:30 am »

Quote from: Edding3000
With 3 or 4 (major) devlopers wanting to use your engine, is it sufficient to work on it with 2 people?
I understnad hiring people is expensive though.
These are not "major" developers, but they each released a game already and want to upgrade to a modern engine that would be scalable with their future needs as well.
We two are the stable permanent core, but there are others working with us and we will be surely expanding in near future.
Logged

Edding3000

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 93
Open Source Forever
« Reply #14 on: August 18, 2010, 11:36:25 am »

Quote from: cameni
Quote from: Edding3000
With 3 or 4 (major) devlopers wanting to use your engine, is it sufficient to work on it with 2 people?
I understnad hiring people is expensive though.
These are not "major" developers, but they each released a game already and want to upgrade to a modern engine that would be scalable with their future needs as well.
We two are the stable permanent core, but there are others working with us and we will be surely expanding in near future.
I see. Only logical to keep 'the team' small in initial development of experimental products. With experimental i mean core engine features that are different in every engine and (with me) bring a lot of try-error-succes-make better with it. Also the terrain engine of course which is i think the first of it's kind in this form.
Logged
Pages: [1] 2