The screens and the trailers looked awesome, especially considering it was 2004.
Wouldn't this fall under the domain of artistic expression? I don't understand how fans can make artwork, music remixes (http://ocremix.org/), or even a miniseries (http://www.therewillbebrawl.com/) representing a particular franchise and not get sued, yet indie game remakes are hit with fire and brimstone. On that note, aren't games now considered art (http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/109835-Games-Now-L...)? What gives?
(I've been wanting to make an open source Ocarina of Time remake, but I am fearful of such lawsuits.)
What I don't understand is why certain talented people don't develop original IP for these sorts of things. This happens occasionally but more often than not the projects just die after getting a cease and desist. Nostalgia is a powerful thing but its easy enough to make a game that is similar to Chrono Trigger, Ocarina of Time, Sonic, etc. using original concepts inspired by them.
* Old Bioware games (Baldur's Gate, Icewind Dale, ...) - GemRB: http://www.gemrb.org
* SCUMM (Monkey Island, Simon the Sorcerer, ...) - ScummVM: http://www.scummvm.org/
* Transport Tycoon Deluxe - OpenTTD: http://www.openttd.org/en/ (this has optional free replacements for the graphics/sound/music, too)
Some of my favourites: Wolf3D, Doom, Rise of the Triad, Hexen, Duke3D, Quake, Sim City 2000, Sim Ant, Civilization, Command & Conquer, Red Alert, Warcraft & Warcraft 2, Theme Hospital, Syndicate, System Shock, X-Wing
If you are going to play X-Com: Ufo Defense, you owe it to yourself to use XComUtil . XComUtil patches the binary to remove some bugs and can optionally introduce new gameplay elements.
Also the original Master of Orion is still one of the best civilization type games, if not the best. It has aged well, and really shines in its concentration on large scale decisions, and avoidance of micro-management.
First programming I ever really did (in terms of understanding logic and its effects on end product) was Doom PWADs when I was a kid.
15 years later, I can get:
- Doomsday engine on my Mac
- 500MB of high-res textures hand-crafted to replace all the original walls and ceiling/floors.
- MD models for every object and monster
- High resolution re-sampled sound and music
- My original WAD - me and a friend made one of the largest (and highest tech - deep water, transparent textures on doors, invisible platforms) Doom II wads ever - lost it, but the internet still has thepath.zip
And play Doom II like I remember it, not like how it was.
Is it just the "it is something different/new and thus feels fresh" or do you really consider it look better objectively?
This isn't a blanket statement about models and sprites, but given a free camera and a 3d world, I think models work better. They don't have to look better, though: I'd say that Quake looked a lot worse Duke3D, even though they were both released in '96.
For the record, I'm not posting this as a critique of your tastes. I just wanted you to know that some people really do find that model to be objectively better.
This deep understanding of game art is necessary to successfully translate a particular 2d art style into 3d, or suitably reimagine it in a more 3d compatible style.
If you look at them side by side (UQM against the original PC Starcon 2) it is remarkable how much work has been put in to improving the graphics and sound for modern computers.
I've emailed the author to see if he'd like to add it to the list.
There are a few for free as well:
Freeciv.net is an open source project, released under the GNU Affero General Public License 3.0 or later. The project is a fork of the C server from Freeciv.org, which has origins back to 1996. The idea of creating a version for Freeciv which would be playable online in a browser came about some time in 2007, and this project has evolved into what it is now since then. The first public beta release of Freeciv.net was available in December 2009, and the code is still under continuous development."
AlienArena - like UT, Q3A. Graphically impressive, seems to be actively developed.
Nexuiz - like UT, Q3A. Also decent graphics, seems devs are working on a commercial sequel now, so the last major version was in 2009.
OpenArena - like Q3A. Seems to be an attempt to recreate Quake 3 Team Arena from the GPL source with new content, some graphical improvements.
Tremulous - like Gloom, Natural Selection etc. Sci-fi FPS/RTS hybrid.
Urban Terror - like Counter-Strike, but a little more arcade-style.
EDIT: free but not yet open source
That said, my all-time favorite is Heroes of Might and Magic 2. I always return to it, and am just overjoyed to see the open source project there.
This is true of EVERY important category of software (From the OS on down!), not just games. Until the FOSS movement starts focusing on creating new things and not just cheap knockoffs of original, innovative software it will remain a niche.
http://sarien.net/ (web based!)
http://www.agdinteractive.com/ (high-res remakes)
http://www.tsl-game.com/ (The Silver Lining - a completely new game continuing the Kings Quest story line)
Stratagus/Wargus is a clone of the Warcraft II engine (which you also need original game files to play). It's no longer being actively developed, but the last release was stable and only had minor bugs (you can play all of the way through with no problem, plus multiplayer):
There's also a glacially-slow effort to re-work the Homeworld source code to openGL (and cross-platform):
The top-down version apparently hasn't been updated in a while, but it's archived here:
The fully 3D, iso-metric version looks like it's still being worked on though:
Mech Commander 2 : No open-source clone, BUT...
(zomg I want a co-op MP TES:MW clone)
Not found: Project Space Station.
Also big love for HOMM1 and 2
Super creative use within the limitaitons