FreeSpace and FreeSpace 2 are two of the absolute best space shooters around, and thankfully FreeSpace 2 continues living on very nicely with the FreeSpace 2 Source Code Project.
A new release is up after another year of work with version 21.0.0 going up today, January 27 2021. There's some big stuff included in this release too! Here's the highlights:
- More OpenGL optimizations
- Full type information output for Lua documentation. Very useful for writing Lua scripts.
- A new -weaponspew command-line option for printing MediaVP-style statistics, plus a weapon comparison spreadsheet, to the debug log.
- Improved ship lookup behavior in SEXPs for improved performance.
- BPTC/BC7 texture compression support
- Refactoring and new features for the ship lab.
- Missile multi-lock. It's finally in an official build!
- Enhancements to the model code in preparation for cool features in 21.2.
- IPv6 support for multiplayer
- A lot of general fixes for multiplayer.
See the release post here.
These are games from my childhood, with FreeSpace 2 originally releasing around 19 years ago. They hold up admirably well, although FreeSpace 2 is far better with all the updates thanks to the Source Code Project. Something to keep in mind though, is that it's not technically FOSS (free and open source software), as it's using a non-standard license.
You can see a bit of classic gameplay from one of our older videos below:
Note: It does require the original data files to run, as it's just the game engine.
As an interesting side-note: the Luxtorpeda project supports running Freespace 2 from Steam using this game engine on Linux. You can also pick it up on GOG.com.
I need to sit down and get my HOTAS mapped out for it.
Quoting: pete910Them beam weapons still haven't been surpassed in any other game since this !I was thinking the exact same thing as I read the article. It shows both how great this game was and how much modern gaming has stagnated. I would vastly prefer to play the many community made mods (including the excellent Battlestar Galactica one) for this engine rather than many modern games...
BTW: The last time I tinkered with this was 2-3 years ago, and their Linux documentation was ancient and out of date even then. I hope that's been updated.
Quoting: DMJCThe most important part of Freespace 2 is FRED2 the mission editor. QTFred is busting open the future of Freespace2 by bringing FRED2 to Mac and Linux. There's an important lesson for FLOSS game developers in Freespace2's success. Tools matter. Access to modding tools, access to rigging tools and story creation tools are important to keep your game relevant. Freespace 2 would have died years ago if it hadn't had FRED2 and the DMTools pack.
Seriously. Wish that the Neverwinter Nights tools had been released for Linux by Bioware all those years ago.
Last edited by slaapliedje on 16 February 2021 at 8:07 pm UTC
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