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The space 4x strategy game 'Star Ruler 2' is now open source

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Star Ruler 2 from Blind Mind Studios has officially become open source and not just the game engine, it seems it's the whole thing.

Writing on their Steam forum yesterday, the developer said this:

Hi everyone! It's been a few years now since Blind Mind Studios went inactive, so we figured if we're not doing anything with the code to SR2 we should just release it under an open source license.

If anyone is interested in seeing how the engine works, or tweaking whatever, the code for SR2's StarFlare engine is now fully available at https://github.com/BlindMindStudios/StarRuler2-Source

The repository includes build instructions for windows and linux, but no prebuilt binaries, this does mean everyone can play the game for free, but you will have to put in some extra effort to build it first.

If you're not going to do anything with your game any more, that's a pretty awesome thing to do for the community. They deserve a pizza or two for that.

The entire code for the game engine is under the MIT license, with art assets, images and 3d models are licensed under the Creative Commons CC-BY-NC 2.0 license (a non-commercial license). It even includes the Wake of the Heralds DLC Expansion! There is one caveat though, the music is not included but it can be detected and played if you own it—likely as they licensed it from somewhere else (a very common thing).

I did take an early look at the game way back in 2015 and it was quite a different experience, so now hopefully more people can join in and see what they think and perhaps continue the effort.

Hat tip to MrTogatsu.

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18 comments
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MayeulC 24 July 2018 at 2:51 pm UTC
I quite enjoyed SR1, if only the tutorial (in which I must have spent 6 hours or more), but that was on windows and a while ago.

I bought SR2 as well a few months back, but didn't get around to play with it. It seemed quite a recent (and decent) game to me, even if reviews seem to deem it unbalanced. So I am quite surprised with this move.

I can't wait to see what the community will do with it! I wish well to the developers as well.

Quotethis does mean everyone can play the game for free, but you will have to put in some extra effort to build it first

Edit: what I mean with rude is anything that would offend the developer, and would put off other developers that might otherwise be tempted to do the same.

This strikes me as odd, as MIT doesn't prevent binary distribution at all...
Anyway, the devil is out of the box... Would it be considered rude to put it up on FlatHub?


Last edited by MayeulC at 24 July 2018 at 2:52 pm UTC
GGLucas 24 July 2018 at 4:03 pm UTC
Hi all. One of the original Star Ruler 2 devs here.

denyasisQuestion: if they are "not active", who gets the money from a steam or GOG purchase?

The SR2 dev team all moved on to different jobs after the game was completed a few years ago (some of us in the game industry, some of us outside of it). We didn't use a publisher for SR2 though, so you would still be supporting us directly by purchasing the game on steam or GOG.

Personally I've always been a big fan of pay-what-you-want models, although sadly the idea hasn't really caught on as much as I'd hoped. To me opening up the Star Ruler 2 source just makes it something like a pay-if-you-want game.

MayeulCThis strikes me as odd, as MIT doesn't prevent binary distribution at all...
Anyway, the devil is out of the box... Would it be considered rude to put it up on FlatHub?

We absolutely chose the licenses for the code and assets deliberately to allow people to freely distribute the game or any modified versions of it non-commercially. I wouldn't consider it rude at all to put it on FlatHub or any other package manager that allows for non-commercial licenses.
mcphail 24 July 2018 at 4:06 pm UTC
MayeulCWould it be considered rude to put it up on FlatHub?

I think there is a snap being brewed. I can't see why there couldn't be a flatpak too. As above, some may try then buy to support the dev.
raneon 24 July 2018 at 4:29 pm UTC
Great, thank you very much for providing this as open source. I'm happy to pay for this game to show my support, this behavior should be encouraged.
In general think it is legit that game devs do not provide their work as open source in the first years, but seeing a release after a promised amount of time would be a great thing for a lively gaming community. At least I wouldn't have heard of this game without this news :-)
Cyril 24 July 2018 at 7:00 pm UTC
Like many of you, I just bought the game on GOG (with partner link, but I forgot to use it with Turok...).
Big up to the devs!
emphy 24 July 2018 at 10:15 pm UTC
GGLucas...

Personally I've always been a big fan of pay-what-you-want models, although sadly the idea hasn't really caught on as much as I'd hoped.

...


Heh, probably too late for this (and would require extra work for you), but itch.io has this option. If I understand correctly, another upside of selling there is that they also take a lower cut of the sales.
Dunc 25 July 2018 at 2:51 pm UTC
ysblokjeI made a package for it in AUR right away
Heh. An AUR package was in the back of my mind when I downloaded the source. But you have to be quick to beat the Arch community. (In truth, I'd probably never have got round to it anyway. Great work, ysblokje.)

raneonIn general think it is legit that game devs do not provide their work as open source in the first years
Honestly, while I can accept assets, artwork, and - especially - trademarks being proprietary and “protected”, over the years I've come to believe that code should be open source. Even those restrictive licences where “trusted” outsiders can see the code but not copy or modify it are (slightly) better than nothing at all. But it must always be the developers' choice.

So now that you're here, GGLucas, thanks again.
denyasis 28 July 2018 at 1:36 am UTC
GGLucasHi all. One of the original Star Ruler 2 devs here.
...

The SR2 dev team all moved on to different jobs after the game was completed a few years ago (some of us in the game industry, some of us outside of it). We didn't use a publisher for SR2 though, so you would still be supporting us directly by purchasing the game on steam or GOG.

Thanks for replying. I've added the game to my wishlist for my next purchase. The game Built for me just fine. I saw the post in the Steam forums about where you and the other Dev's are. I want to wish you all best of luck in your endeavors.
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