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Five addictive open source games

By Dmitri Popov on July 29, 2005 (8:00:00 AM)

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You can use open source software to make yourself more productive, but the open source community has also produced some impressive game titles, such as Freeciv, Vega Strike, and Flight Simulator. I've found some lesser-known yet excellent and quite addictive games for you to try. All of these games have low system requirements and run on multiple platforms, including Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X.

BOXit

BOXit is a simple Java-based puzzle game, where you have to remove tiles with the same color or value by dragging tiles one over another. The trick is that you can only remove tiles that are on the same row or column. The goal of the game is to remove as many tiles as possible. The game stops when you have no more moves left. The fewer tiles left on the board, the higher the score you get. Ideally, you will have only one tile left, but that's not as easy as it sounds, and achieving the goal requires some logical thinking. Depending on your skills, a game can take 10 minutes to half an hour, which makes it a perfect game for a lunch break or train commute.

StroQ

StroQ is another "simple" puzzle game, where you have to draw a single continuous line -- the stroke -- from one square to another. When you run the puzzle by pressing the F5 key, white and black squares along this line will flip over (white become black, and black become white). The puzzle is solved when all the tiles in each row have the same color.

StroQ features a wide collection of puzzles (some are really tough to solve), and you can download a new puzzle every day using the Puzzle of the Day command.

JDuplicate

If you want to play Scrabble on your computer, look no further than Java-based JDuplicate. Scrabble is a multi-player game, and JDuplicate allows you to connect to a JDuplicate server to play with other users and even chat with them. You can connect to the official server, which is provided as the default with the JDuplicate client, or you can set up your own server and play Scrabble on a local network. JDuplicate supports English, Russian, and French, and you can easily add other languages.

Because of copyright restrictions, JDuplicate comes with only one English word list. However, you can easily add other word lists, provided you run your own JDuplicate server. Simply save the word list in plain text format with the .LST extension and place it in the data > dictionaries folder.

JDuplicate lets you play Scrabble and Duplicate, which is especially popular in France. In Duplicate, all players have the same hand and play every turn. The best scoring move from all players is applied on the board, and each player is awarded the number of points that his move would have scored.

netPanzer

If you like fast-paced tactical battle games, try netPanzer. This multi-player game allows you to join one of the available servers, or set up your own. The main objective is to occupy outposts and destroy enemy tanks. Although your strategy for each game will vary, you can start by occupying outposts. Since the occupied outposts can act as production facilities, you can use them to produce tanks.

Each tank has its own key characteristics: hit points, attack power, attack range, speed, and reload time. Using this information you can form tank armies, destroy enemy tanks, and occupy more outposts. The game also includes power-ups, which look like rotating lightning signs. If you can acquire a power-up, you get a bonus, such as additional tanks, the ability to view enemy tanks on the map, or increased speed for your own tanks.

Playing netPanzer with others can be fun, but what if you don't have an Internet connection, or you want to play against the computer? In that case, you can launch netPanzer's own server and activate bots with the command netpanzer -d & netpanzer -b localhost & netpanzer -b localhost & netpanzer. This will start the server, two bots, and the netPanzer application. In the main menu, choose multi-player. Then type localhost in the server IP address field, and press Next. Now you can play a game offline against two bots.

jRisk

As the name implies, jRisk is a Java-based computer version of the well-known turn-based strategy board game Risk, so if you've ever played conventional Risk, you already know the basics. However, jRisk adds a couple of additional tweaks to the original game. Notably, the application allows you to play three different types of games: Domination, Capital, and Secret Mission. Unlike conventional Risk, jRisk offers six map views; besides the familiar Continents view, you have Ownership, Border Threat, Card Ownership, Troop Strength, and Connected Empire. These views help you keep tabs on your empire, detect threats, and manage your troops more effectively.

jRisk features a visually appealing interface as well as a selection of different maps, which add another dimension to the game. If you are connected to the Net, you can join an existing jRisk game or you can start your own server. Starting the server is as easy as pressing the Start Server button, and other players can then join the server on port 4444. When you're not online, you can play jRisk against artificial intelligence players.

Dmitri Popov is a freelance writer whose articles have appeared in Russian, British, and Danish computer magazines.

Dmitri Popov is a freelance writer whose articles have appeared in Russian, British, US, German, and Danish computer magazines.

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on Five addictive open source games

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There are others very nice too

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 03:15 AM
Like:
- Bzflag: Multiplayer first person tank game, very nice, lot of hours online getting tanks down and capturing the flag.
- Pingus: Cute game, you've to think where to build things or dig holes to make the pengüins reach the exit on each level, very addictive.
- Frozen Bubble: Very cool game to spend some time, you've to shot balls to match the color and make them dissapear.

You can find the three of them on the web, and at least BzFlag and Pingus run on Windows too (I dunno about Frozen Bubble).

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Re:There are others very nice too

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 04:57 AM
Battle For Wesnoth!

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Re:There are others very nice too

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 06:45 AM
I had installed Frozen Bubble for my niece and nephew to play...I tried it out, just so i could show them how to play it. I got hooked.<nobr> <wbr></nobr>;)

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Stupid Java wanker

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 03:57 AM
Go play with bloated servlet engines and the crazy UML-dripping XML slurping strapplets, instead of publishing these useles self centered pieces.

Let the rest of the world play real games.

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Re:Stupid Java wanker

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 05:03 AM
A fool does not find joy in understanding but only in expressing his own opinion<nobr> <wbr></nobr>.. even if it sucks

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Re:Stupid Java wanker

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 05:17 AM
that was the most idiotic comment I have ever read. How are these games keeping the rest of the world away from the "real games"? I didn't think people like you existed. Publish your own article when you grow up and let others write in peace.

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Re:Stupid Java wanker

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 05:18 AM
Real, professional commercial games, like Vampire: Masquerade.

Oh, wait, that was written in Java.

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Re:Stupid Java wanker

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 05:42 AM
Actually, Vampire: Masquerade does use Java but only for scripting (it has an embedded Java 1.1 VM), which is very different then saying the whole game was written in Java.

Not that I agree with who you are trying argue with, Java is great for many types of games, but for the bleeding-edge, push-the-hardware-limits type of game, you'll be hard pressed to find a game written in 100% Java.

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Re:Stupid Java wanker

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 07:42 AM
I guess it's not a wanker then.

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&amp; there are others tooo

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 05:16 AM
I like Americas ARMY the best Multiplayer... its free (guess it is open source..)

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Re:&amp; there are others tooo

Posted by: hazza on July 31, 2005 09:33 PM
No AA is not Open Source, it just costs no money, but you will NEVER see the source code (unless you are a DEV).



You do know the difference between Open Source and free? Open Source is free, free is not Open Source.



It would be like saying all Fords are cars so all cars are Fords, bzzzzzt WRONG! Go to the back of the class and wear this hat while you sit in the corner.

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Re:&amp; there are others tooo

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 01, 2005 01:53 AM
For that extra sense of confusion, try to distinguish between free and Free<nobr> <wbr></nobr>;)

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Re:&amp; there are others tooo

Posted by: The_Wilschon on August 01, 2005 09:58 AM
Open Source is not free (beer). At least, not necessarily.



I can write some code, slap a GPL (or BSD, or whathaveyou) license on it, and then refuse to give it to anyone unless they pay me 50$. However, as soon someone else has it, under the terms of at least the GPL (don't know about BSD), if you ask me for the source code, I have to give it to you for no more than the cost of reproduction (ie, the cost of a blank CD and 2 minutes of my time and electricity to burn it). Then once you have the source code, you can do whatever you like with it, including giving it away to anyone else you like.



So, in 99% of cases, OSS is free (as in beer). But not always.



OSS is not a subset of free (beer).



On the other hand, Free (speech) software is, depending on who you talk to, a subset of or equal to OSS. I would say it is a subset but not equal, as the source code could be available, but the license might still restrict what I can do with that source code, in which case the software is not Free (speech). However, if the software is Free (speech) then the source code is available.

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Armagetron

Posted by: Danilo Câmara on July 30, 2005 08:22 AM
A Tron clone in 3d: <a href="http://armagetron.sourceforge.net/" title="sourceforge.net">http://armagetron.sourceforge.net/</a sourceforge.net>

#

Another one

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 09:34 AM
Neverball's another great, addictive Linux game. Basically, you move a ball through an obstacle course by tilting the ground beneath it, while being treated to cool graphics and music<nobr> <wbr></nobr>:)

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Neverputt

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 09:44 AM
... and Neverputt.... to go with Neverball.... great 3-D games involving balls and well-simulated physics.

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Try Liquid War

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 10:21 AM
I find Liquid War to be very adictive. <a href="http://www.ufoot.org/liquidwar/" title="ufoot.org">http://www.ufoot.org/liquidwar/</a ufoot.org>

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Many other nice ones

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 30, 2005 06:20 PM
I agree with the obove poster, America's Army, and Enemy Territory, make great games for Linux. I don't know if those programs are actually open source. I won't be presumptive to say I know which are best, but I enjoy playing skobo - I find it tricky and almost puzzle-like. My 3 year old likes it, too, although he can't quite figure it out. I believe skobo is available on windows, for those holdouts out there.

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Win32 versions about freedom instead of terror

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 31, 2005 02:58 AM
This girl has an great list of FreeAsInFreedom titles - most of which run on NT/2K/XP/LH:

<a href="http://patware.freeshell.org/game.html" title="freeshell.org">http://patware.freeshell.org/game.html</a freeshell.org>

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Re:Many other nice ones

Posted by: hazza on July 31, 2005 09:38 PM
AA is not FOSS, ET is.



ET is awesome, you can find the Bittorrent here:
<a href="http://zerowing.idsoftware.com:6969/" title="idsoftware.com">http://zerowing.idsoftware.com:6969/</a idsoftware.com>

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Re:Many other nice ones

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 01, 2005 03:19 AM
ET (the full game) is not Free. The Quake III engine haven't been released as GPL because companies are still licensing the engine. The "Mod" source however is Free, afaik.

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Re:Many other nice ones

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 02, 2005 08:58 PM
Definitely ET Wolf<nobr> <wbr></nobr>:)

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supertux!

Posted by: segphault on July 31, 2005 03:03 AM
My favorite linux game is SuperTux: <a href="http://supertux.berlios.de/" title="berlios.de">http://supertux.berlios.de/</a berlios.de>

Interesting article. NetPanzer looks fun.

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My take: OpenTTD

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 31, 2005 06:21 AM
OK, this one's a bit tricky since it needs the original data files from Transport Tycoon DeLuxe but still - a great game. <a href="http://www.openttd.org/" title="openttd.org">http://www.openttd.org/</a openttd.org>

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I like chromium.

Posted by: Rohit on July 31, 2005 02:01 PM
It is a nice old-arcade style shoot em up kind of game <a href="http://www.reptilelabour.com/software/chromium/" title="reptilelabour.com">http://www.reptilelabour.com/software/chromium/</a reptilelabour.com>

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Fast games, slow games and the (a)social aspect

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 31, 2005 06:19 PM
* Fast games

If I only have about half an hour to play, I like fast networked multiplayer games, like BZFlag. Using either keyboard arrows or a mouse to move your tank in a first-person perspective, just shoot or get shot by another player's tank. You are immediately back in the game to level the score. Great graphics, and you can turn of different details if your hardware is not up to the full task.

URL: <a href="http://www.bzflag.org/" title="bzflag.org">http://www.bzflag.org/</a bzflag.org>

Another favourite is Planeshift, an online 3D role-playing game. Create your character, choosing from many different fantasy races, and explore and combat other players and monsters. The interface is a bit more involved than BZFlag, but you should manage to get about and chat with other players in minutes. Set aside at least a couple of hours to play, though, as the online world is huge, and exploration takes time.

URL: <a href="http://www.planeshift.it/" title="planeshift.it">http://www.planeshift.it/</a planeshift.it>

* Slow games

FreeCiv 2 is a clone of Sid Meyer's Civilization II/III. My wife loves this game, as she gets to show me time and time again who is the best strategist building a civilization from 4000 B.C and only one settler knowing pottery to reach the stars after 6000 years. We have played this game at least 100 hours, if not twice that. It is very addictive, but requires some getting used to, which is why I've classefied it as a slow game. The game play is anything but slow, as you must make your civilization grow whilst you are at war, conduct diplomacy, have uprisings and revolutions. If you like chess, then this is for you! We just got Sid Meyer's Civilization III, but the interface had changed so much that we were unable to play! We didn't get a manual with our copy (something called Deluxe Edition) from www.play.com. We will probably figure it out, but Civ III is definitely a slow game.

URL: <a href="http://www.freeciv.org/" title="freeciv.org">http://www.freeciv.org/</a freeciv.org>

These games requires other human players to get together, which makes every game different. Planeshift is a role-playing game, so that never "ends" like the other two. However, another strong point is the free game flow in all these games. You decide what to do, and can follow different paths to success or failure.

If anyone knows of a networked deck of cards, I would really like to know about it. I want to be able to add any number of players, and then just deal the cards to them, explain the rules through chatting, and play a any game of cards we agree upon.

#

Another neat RTS

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 31, 2005 07:57 PM
Another neat RTS is Warzone2100 ( <a href="http://developer.berlios.de/projects/warzone/" title="berlios.de">http://developer.berlios.de/projects/warzone/</a berlios.de> ).
It was once a commercial game but was released under the GPL in late 2004.
Although the project is still new and they haven't yet made a stable point-oh release, it's still a cool game and runs OK on both windos and linux.

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Games Free

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 31, 2005 08:11 PM
My favorite is BOXit I ve always enjoyed a good puzzle and when I am not busy helping out poeple I try to relaxe with a good puzzle This link is great I am going to post it on the childrens we site <a href="http://www.liversociety.org/" title="liversociety.org">http://www.liversociety.org/</a liversociety.org> so children can play them while there resting and healing.

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Educational games?

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on July 31, 2005 11:10 PM
I've lot really come across anything suitable for young children. I see lots of games for little 'uns in the stores, but cannot find anything for Linux.

Anyone seen this rare beast in the wild?

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Sorry but these games are terrible.

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 01, 2005 09:23 AM
I'd rather play zsnes all day than play these.

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Re:Educational games?

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 01, 2005 02:05 PM
try tuxpaint

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Re:Educational games?

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 02, 2005 07:56 PM
GCompris isn't bad in this respect:
<a href="http://www.ofset.org/gcompris/" title="ofset.org">http://www.ofset.org/gcompris/</a ofset.org>

Also there's always the online flash games for kids:
<a href="http://www.boohbah.com/zone.html" title="boohbah.com">http://www.boohbah.com/zone.html</a boohbah.com>

And that site's creators:
<a href="http://www.poissonrouge.com/" title="poissonrouge.com">http://www.poissonrouge.com/</a poissonrouge.com>
Although I'm not sure if you'll get the flash running, and it's not open source<nobr> <wbr></nobr>:)

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Re: Educational games?

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 76.66.61.23] on September 14, 2007 09:43 AM
Freeduc games CD:
http://www.ofset.org/freeduc-games (it is available in English)

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Your Missing Out!

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 01, 2005 01:47 PM
The latest and hottest new game for Linux is The Frogs Of War - <a href="http://fullsack.com/frogs/" title="fullsack.com">http://fullsack.com/frogs/</a fullsack.com>

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Opensource Games

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 01, 2005 10:08 PM
I Think Nexuiz is the best open source online shooting game
is based on the quake engine and provides an fast deathmatch like gameplay download it 4free at

www.nexuiz.com

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Re:Opensource Games

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 02, 2005 04:35 PM
I second Nexuiz, its a game that I play on a daily basis.

Another one I recommend is Cube <a href="http://cubeengine.com/" title="cubeengine.com">http://cubeengine.com/</a cubeengine.com> . There is almost always players online for both these great First Person Shooters.

Nexuiz is GPL and Cube is zLib (BSD-style) licensed.

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Great Game

Posted by: AmoVictor on August 02, 2005 04:04 AM
I loved the Risk game, I'm surprised they were able to call it that (rather than JRisk) since it is probably trade marked.

#

Miss Driller

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 02, 2005 07:30 PM
Miss Driller is packaged with Berry Linux, but also has a Win32 version. This game is Open Source and non-violent -- but, highly addictive. (There is also a Mac OS version available). Pick-up the Win32 version, here:

<a href="http://www.geocities.co.jp/Berkeley/2093/drilldist005.zip" title="geocities.co.jp">http://www.geocities.co.jp/Berkeley/2093/drilldis<nobr>t<wbr></nobr> 005.zip</a geocities.co.jp>

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Hmm

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 03, 2005 01:09 AM
I was curious when I saw this article, but the games pretty much sucked. Most Linux games do suck. Linux is in need of a couple good, fun, entertaining high-quality games.



SuperTux

Kinda like Super Mario but with Tux.<nobr> <wbr></nobr>:)

http://supertux.berlios.de/



BzFlag

Arcade 3D tank game.

http://bzflag.org/



Battle of Wesnoth

Medival Fantasy turn-based strategy game.

http://www.wesnoth.org/

#

I found this KBall and is pretty good

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on August 03, 2005 01:59 PM
Well, this one is a good open source game, and provided me hours and hours of fun.

The game is at <a href="http://kball.sf.net/" title="sf.net">http://kball.sf.net/</a sf.net>

#

big list of open source games

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 75.140.21.245] on December 03, 2007 04:18 PM
Here is a big list of open source games.

http://fossgamer.110mb.com/index.html

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Five addictive open source games

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 83.202.162.165] on January 16, 2008 08:12 PM
Think about TUER:
http://tuer.tuxfamily.org

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Five addictive open source games

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 83.202.162.165] on January 16, 2008 08:17 PM
My game is written in Java : http://tuer.tuxfamily.org

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TAspring

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 82.166.53.107] on January 22, 2008 03:27 PM
You people are clueless....what about spring project?It has the best real time strategy gameplay i have ever experianced..it works on linux and win..I played starcraft and supcom online nothing comes close to spring gameplay!how did it not get mentioned.

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Five addictive open source games

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 77.185.21.143] on January 30, 2008 12:58 PM
Hey there, I got tired of incomplete/hardly playable games being praised, so I started a wiki-based list of ‘complete games’ list. check it out and extend it at http://wiki.freegamedev.net/index.php/Complete%2C_non-casual_open_source_games rep1

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Re: Five addictive open source games

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 77.185.21.143] on January 30, 2008 01:01 PM

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