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Reverse engineered source code for Diablo is now on GitHub

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This is a bit of a surprise! Someone going by the name 'GalaXyHaXz' has put up source code for the original Diablo that was apparently reverse engineered called 'Devilution'. It doesn't have the data, so you do need a copy of the original to work it.

The goal of Devilution itself is to recreate the original source code as accurately as possible, in order to ensure that everything is preserved. This goes as far as bugs and badly written code in the original game. However, it becomes a solid base for developers to work with; making it much easier than before to update, fix, and port the game to other platforms.

As a side goal, Devilution helps document the unused and cut content from the final game. Development of Diablo was rushed near the end--many ideas were scrapped and Multiplayer was quickly hacked in. By examining the source, we can see various quirks of planned development.

I don't know enough about that myself to say if it's legit, legal or anything, but it's still rather interesting. It's especially fun, since in the FAQ, the developer noted they plan a separate project to update it with a Linux port with OpenGL, modernize the UI and much more.

On the project page, the developer notes that it can apparently run in Wine on Linux right now.

It will be interesting to see what Blizzard do as a response to this. Find it on GitHub.

Thanks for the tip Roney.

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34 comments
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Rugaliz 20 June 2018 at 10:22 am UTC
This is awesome news! I love the Diablo games (as in 1 and 2...there was no 3 was there?)
There was the freeablo project to make an open engine, this moves that effort along much faster. Dunno if the freeablo developer will continue on his project, maybe he could help out on this one or take from it. Just hope i can finally play diablo on Linux soon.

(also somebody copy the source code before bizzard hears about this)
mcphail 20 June 2018 at 10:32 am UTC
I'm so tempted to make a snap of this with bundled WINE...

...but maybe I'll wait for a bit of clarity about the legal situation.
son_link 20 June 2018 at 10:41 am UTC
Another is working on samw for Diablo II, but at the moment only works for Windows (GNU/Linux and Mac needs some work): https://github.com/eezstreet/OpenD2
TimeFreeze 20 June 2018 at 10:44 am UTC
Sweet. Will look forward to it. (Hopes that Blizzard is cool with it)
stretch611 20 June 2018 at 11:37 am UTC
More than likely, it is not legal. If it was legal chances are that Blizzard/Activision would be making the announcement, not some unknown "hacker" named "GalaXyHaXz". Also, if it was legal, I would expect the original source code to be released... not some reversed engineered code.

In many cases, it is hard to tell how a company would react to 20-25 year old code being released illegally. Some companies may not exist anymore, and others would ignore it as it is not likely to be worth much more than a curiosity of a time long passed.

However, this is Blizzard/Activision... We have seen what they have done to people that have tried to extend their code before and it results in takedowns and lawsuits. Even people who create bots have been taken to court by Blizzard. Expect the same treatment here... a quick DCMA takedown notice to the site hosting the code, followed by a major lawsuit against the hacker.
TimeFreeze 20 June 2018 at 11:52 am UTC
Even when it gets closed by Blizzard. I bet many People will have already Downloaded / copyed the Stuff from GitHub. Dont think someone will try to release it to the public again then (who knows). But yeah the point is many people will probably already have it now on their PC or somewhere. Maybe someone tries to work on it in secret and then just release it again with some really weird name and hopes that Blizzard wont find out. But who knows just wait and lets see what will happen.
legluondunet 20 June 2018 at 12:25 pm UTC
There is a free open source port named FreeAblo too: https://freeablo.org/
Someone tested it? You can play single game and the dev actually work on a multiplayer feature.
Rugaliz 20 June 2018 at 12:39 pm UTC
legluondunetThere is a free open source port named FreeAblo too: https://freeablo.org/
Someone tested it? You can play single game and the dev actually work on a multiplayer feature.

Freeablo is still a long way until its playable. I have been following development in github and the commits have been sparse. This is why this is so much good news. Now there is no need to reverse engineer the code, programmers just need to port and enhance.


Last edited by Rugaliz at 20 June 2018 at 12:40 pm UTC
slaapliedje 20 June 2018 at 3:08 pm UTC
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RugalizThis is awesome news! I love the Diablo games (as in 1 and 2...there was no 3 was there?)
There was the freeablo project to make an open engine, this moves that effort along much faster. Dunno if the freeablo developer will continue on his project, maybe he could help out on this one or take from it. Just hope i can finally play diablo on Linux soon.

(also somebody copy the source code before bizzard hears about this)

There is a Diablo 3, it just isn't good... like at all. About the only thing I would mark it as good are the graphics. Past that it is way too easy. Like I can set down my controller and leave the room and that is the only way I die, easy. The way they balanced it is ridiculous, and my brother and I were playing on the hoghest difficulty allowed.

This is cool though, Diablo 1 and 2 are still great games!
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