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Syntensity: New Multiplayer 3D Game Platform

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I'd like to bring your attention to a new open source platform for multiplayer 3D games, Syntensity. Here is a screenshot of the lobby (from where you can enter portals that send you into different games): (click for bigger version) Syntensity isn't a single game, but rather a platform that lets you create and run all kinds of 3D games. There are already a few games, and we and other people are working on more. The main game is a multiplayer first/third person shooter (sort of like Quake 3 Arena), and there is also a simple drawing game (in which multiple people can draw and see what each other are drawing in realtime). You can see both games in action in
">this video.

Main Features and Benefits

We believe Syntensity should be interesting for people looking for an engine for multiplayer 3D games, for the following reasons. The Syntensity client downloads game content for you automatically. So once someone has the Syntensity client installed, they can play any of the games without needing to manually download or install anything (like you can use Firefox to view websites). Also, when you create or modify a game, you can easily upload the new version, and then everyone can immediately play it. That means it is easy to make your games available for people to play. Another major feature is that anybody can modify any game on Syntensity. So if you're playing a game and you think, "it would be cool if that weapon did more damage," or "the game would be more balanced if that position was less fortified," then you can modify a version of that game, and other people can play your modified version. In other words, all of the games on Syntensity can be used as the basis for a new game that you create. Everything is moddable. Note that this is what we are doing on Syntensity - letting anybody modify any game - but you are free to use our open source engine (the Intensity Engine) to run your own games, however you want (see later down about the engine). Other benefits of Syntensity are that it is free and open source, cross-platform (currently Windows and Linux, with OS X hopefully soon), has in-world editing, and supports both client- and server-side scripting (it's easy, for example, to create a new weapon type for a game; see packages/library/1_2/guns/ in the source code). You can also run your games on our servers for free, or on your own if you prefer.

Background and Engine Stuff

Syntensity is the result of about a year and a half of intensive coding, and also uses a lot of existing open source code. To briefly summarize, we started with Cube 2/Sauerbraten, made it much more flexible and generic, added a new scripting API using Google V8, and wrote a lot of infrastructure like asset distribution and management in Python. The core engine is in C++, while games are written in javascript and plugins can be written in Python. The master (metadata) server is written in Python and Django. All the components (client, server, master server) are open source under the AGPL. Note that just like Blender, the license only applies to the engine, and not to games you make with it. In other words, games you create and run with our engine don't have any licensing restrictions - you can license them however you want, and you can sell them as well.

Getting started

Get the client from the download page. We currently have binaries for Windows and .debs for Ubuntu (and it is not difficult to compile on other Linuxes). After following the instructions on the download page, see the Quick Start Guide. Note that there is an interactive tutorial in the lobby world, which teaches the basic controls and so forth. You can access it by pressing 'H' when inside the lobby world.


Disclaimer: There may be bugs. You can file them, or you can just mention them here. Feel free to ask for help, here, or on IRC (I - kripken - am usually on FreeNode, at #syntensity, #intensityengine, etc.). Thanks for reading this far :) - kripken and the Syntensity people

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