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Old July 26, 2007, 17:30   #1
quaxocal
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[all] Some general questions

This is going to be a strange post, as I'm not sure how to word it.


How exactly do licenses work for the variants of Angband? It seems like they are open-source, which means anyone can modify the contents as long as they give credit to the original authors and not make any monetary gain on it (must always be freeware). Do you have to have permission from an author to modify things?


I have some experience with C programming (though its been a few years, when I was in college), and a MASSIVE amount of experience with pretty much every kind of rpg imaginable.

So, what I was wanting to do, was taking a variant and updating it and modifying it a bit, to make a more fulfilling and challenging game. How would I go about this? Can I go about this?

Any information would be helpful.
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Old July 26, 2007, 17:44   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quaxocal View Post
This is going to be a strange post, as I'm not sure how to word it.

How exactly do licenses work for the variants of Angband? It seems like they are open-source, which means anyone can modify the contents as long as they give credit to the original authors and not make any monetary gain on it (must always be freeware). Do you have to have permission from an author to modify things?

I have some experience with C programming (though its been a few years, when I was in college), and a MASSIVE amount of experience with pretty much every kind of rpg imaginable.

So, what I was wanting to do, was taking a variant and updating it and modifying it a bit, to make a more fulfilling and challenging game. How would I go about this? Can I go about this?

Any information would be helpful.
Angband has its own licence, which is included with every distribution (and every variant, I think). It is fairly liberal, much as you expect above. You can modify stuff, but can't charge money for it, and need to credit original authors whose work you modify. Some variants may have slightly different licences.

There is a project to bring Angband (Vanilla) fully under the GPL, but it is unfinished - several people remain to be contacted to release their contributions under the GPL.

The bottom line is that nobody is likely to object to you releasing any modified version of V or any other existing variant, providing you give proper credit to whoever's work you use. (With the possible exception of the author of Utumno who is rumoured to have a bee in his bonnet about such things - but since nobody's heard of him for years, and Utumno is extremely unlikely to be the variant you choose to use for your modifications, all should be well.)

Good luck,

CC
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Old July 26, 2007, 18:33   #3
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Well the two I'd be most likely to work with would be either Angband or Zangband (the two that I'm most comfortable with playing, its hard to get into some of the others, and a couple I won't play because I just can't deal with all the ASCII symbols for graphics).

So seems like as long as credit is given to the original authors (who wouldn't do that) and nothing charged, then can be modified as seen fit.

Which leads me to another question.


Are there any good programs around which would enable me to play with the code in the .exe files and other files in Angband (or another variant)?
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Old July 26, 2007, 19:08   #4
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Well, all you really need to hack around with the code is 2 things:
1. The source code (no sense trying to decompile the EXE's when the source is freely available! )
2. A C compiler (though one with an IDE - Integrated Development Environment - is much preferred unless you are a C guru!)

The first is freely available from http://rephial.org/ and the second you can find pretty much anywhere... Seeing as you mentioned an EXE, you're probably running WIndows, so here are some free IDE's you can mess with that will run on Windows:

1. Eclipse - www.eclipse.org - It's designed mainly for Java, but it's also got a module you can grab which lets you write C and C++ code.

2. Netbeans - www.netbeans.org - Again, another Java IDE with a C++ plugin module. Not quite as fancy as Eclipse, but it's easier to get installed.

3. Visual C++ Express - http://msdn.microsoft.com/vstudio/express/visualc/ - The free basic edition of Microsoft's C++ IDE.

4. Dev-C++ - http://www.bloodshed.net/devcpp.html - I'm not too familiar with this one, but some people swear by it...

There are many others as well, those are just the four I could come up with off the top of my head...
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Old July 26, 2007, 19:24   #5
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Alright, so these compliers would be able to build the source code into the necessary files? Its been years since I've done such work lol. I definitely don't qualify as a C guru, so I'll definitely take your advice.

Those links are much appreciated.


I'm mostly looking to taking a version and balancing everything better (Angband and Zangband seem to both have alot of issues here, no offense to anyone ), up the difficulty (especially later on), and tweak other stuff as well. Leaning toward Zangband, since Angband has an active maintainer going at the moment.
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Old July 26, 2007, 20:26   #6
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Well, those are IDE's actually - depending on which one you choose you may need to download a compiler and configure the IDE for use with it, but the IDE website or manual should have instructions on how to do that. Visual C++, for instance, comes with a compiler, but it's mainly geared toward .NET; you'd have to get the Windows SDK package to do plain old C. (There are instructions on the download page for how to do that.) Eclipse, on the other hand - I believe it requires a gcc type compiler, which can be found in mingw or cygwin, and I don't think those are included with it. Netbeans I'm not sure about (I've only used it for Java), and Dev-C++ uses a gcc type compiler like Eclipse does.
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Old July 26, 2007, 22:19   #7
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Sounds a bit complicated but I think I can figure it out.


Any other suggestions or advice as to what would work best? You've been very helpful. I just want to use something which will be easy to use and easy to compile everything.
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Old July 26, 2007, 23:04   #8
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Well, I currently use Eclipse for Java development - if you're into turn-based strategy check this out: http://kolis.dyndns.org/cosmic :-) - and I think it's really handy, but I haven't done much C or C++ with it (or much C/C++ at all for that matter!) Actually I'd like to write my own roguelike if I could, but every time I try I just get bogged down, and I've tried writing ToME modules, but ToME uses an old version of Lua, which confuses me... I doubt I could make much sense of the Angband code, given my preference for more modern programming languages than C... though maybe I could read the docs on the edit files and come up with some sort of "Angband Modder's Tool" which allows at least SOME customization of the game... hmmm...
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Old July 27, 2007, 01:21   #9
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Well I'll definitely give one of them a try this weekend and see what I can do. Thanks for your help.

I'll post here if I have any problems with getting them to work, since you know what you're talking about.
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Old July 27, 2007, 02:06   #10
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For some (somewhat outdated?) information on compiling the source, read:
http://www.thangorodrim.net/compiling.html

Also, if you care to look at the source for Sangband, there is some information on compiling it in /docs/compile.txt

If you have access to a newsreader, consider reading rec.games.roguelike.angband, or try reading the news on this site. Some people have made some suggestions on what C compilers to use there, and it's also another good source for information, especially when it comes to angband development.

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