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mvBarracuda 11-11-2007 05:10 PM

Open source 2D game creation framework trying to fill various positions *screenshots*
Team name:
FIFE developing team.

Project name:
FIFE - Flexible Isometric Fallout(-like) Engine.

Brief description:
Just like the name of our project suggests we work on an open source framework for isometric 2D games. The framework started as a Fallout-related project but we recognized very fast that it offers the potential to be used as a 2D isometric framework for the development of cross platform games in general. The framework supports some assets of the original Fallout games but that does NOT mean they're required in any way to utilize FIFE. We are focusing on the development of the framework itself but will bundle it together with an (rather simple) example game. This way game creators have a starting point for their own FIFE-based projects.

Since we do not focus on the creation of a full featured game we're working on comfortable and easy-to-use editing tools. The framework and the tools are meant to run on all flavours of Linux, Win32 and MacOSX.

Target aim:
Open source GPL v2.0; non-profit

We hope that interested developers will find it exciting to work on the design and the implementation of a whole framework with other experienced and passionate programmers. But as we're a non-profit project we can only offer the actual development experience that you'll gain and the satisfying feeling to be involved in an ambitious project as compensation.

Linux, Windows, MacOSX
C++, Boost library
SDL, OpenGL (optional)

SVN sourcecode checkout:
HTTP sourcecode download:
FIFE 2007.2 src package

Talent needed:
Framework core engineer
Advanced C++ skills and strong interest in engine design are the requirements for applying for this position as you will work on the design of specific framework modules as well as on the architecture of the whole framework. Experience with any of the 3rd party libraries that we're utilizing would be a nice plus but isn't a must. It is far more important that we find someone who can invest a serious amount of time to improve the design of the framework and give the development a direction.

Framework module engineer (misc.)
We're searching for developers who are able to improve certain modules of the framework. Possible fields of work are:
* Audio module development (OpenAL, for a more detailed description, have a look at the following paragraph).
* Event channel module: all type of events (GUI widget, keyboard, mouse & script events).
* GUI-related development.
* Editor development.
* View module development.
* Pathfinding, blocking, line of sight.
* Video module: SDL sw renderer, OpenGL hw renderer
* Scripting development (Python)
* VFS module: virtual file system.
* Unit test development.

Audio module engineer
Our audio programmer has been quite busy lately and didn't finish the planned rewrite of the current audio module yet. We're trying to find a developer who has experience in working with cross platform programming in general and in working with OpenAL in particular. There is already initial code for the rewritten audio module in place, residing in a separate audio branch:
Rewritten audio module branch

Additionally the currently inactive audio programmer did write a report about the current status of the audio branch so interested programmers who would like to continue to work on this branch would have a good starting point:
Rewritten audio module status report

Scripting module engineer
We did recently add Python support to our framework by utilizing SWIG. You would work on implementing features into FIFE that are not performance-critical and can be written in Python therefore. Basic C++ knowledge will be sufficent; advanced Python experience is more important for this position. Another plus would be if you would have worked with SWIG before and could help out with possible arising issues (e.g. object ownership between framework core (C++) and script side (Python) or exception handling were two of the potential pitfalls we did recently discover).

We're using the Python-based SCons tool as build system for our project. Experience with this build tool would be another fantastic additional skill for any interested developer as we intend to improve our build scripts in the long run.

Python techdemo engineer
The team is currently working on a so called FIFE-based "techdemo". The purpose of this techdemo undertaking is to create an example game that:
* proofs that FIFE is ready to create a full featured game with it.
* helps us to create a reasonable API for game creators by testing the usability of it in an actual game project.
* provides a starting point for game creators by offering example content that they can modify and play around with.

Your task as techdemo developer would be to help with the API design by implementing techdemo features in Python. We plan to replace the current raw API that is shaped after the C++ framework code and simply exposed to Python via SWIG with a more pythonic one by introducing an additional API layer. For more information about the API plans see:
More pythonic scripting API for FIFE

Project manager
Project management is a quite complex task as there are a lot of different aspects you can work on. The most important ones are:
* Public relations: write blog updates about the current status of the project and help to spread the word about FIFE.
* Milestone planning: work out a roadmap for the next releases together with the programming staff.
* Developer recruitment: advertize the project and try to find new interested developers this way. Actually this is what I'm doing here right at this very moment :-)

For more information about all project management related aspects:
Project management

Basically we're searching for someone who's willing to learn about the basics of project management by working on an actual game development project. No need to be afraid: I've learned a fair share about project management in the two years since the project was founded so I can provide you with proper guidance :-)

Win32 maintainer - <font color="green]position open</font>
The majority of the active developers run Linux-based systems. We would need somebody on the team who takes care of the following aspects:
* Compile SDK: maintain the official Win32 compile SDK. The compile SDK is a collection of tools (scons, mingw, SWIG) and libraries we utilize for building FIFE on Win32 systems. The compile SDK supports scons (mingw), code::blocks (mingw) & MSVC 2005 (MS Visual C++) as build environments. As libraries tend to get outdated over the time your task would be to update the SDK package with the latest available tools and libraries and test if they work fine in combination with the supported build environments.
* Release packaging: take care of packaging official FIFE releases as well as unofficial SVN snapshots for Win32 systems.

For more information about the mentioned tasks see:
Compile SDK
Release packaging (draft)

Team structure: (only currently active members listed!)
donbachi - software engineer (mac porting)
Jasoka - software engineer (framework core)
jwt - software engineer (framework core)
mortiz - software engineer (pathfinding)
mutex - software engineer (exception handling)
mvBarracuda - project management

Development wiki
Getting started guide for interested developers

Current release:
FIFE 2007.2 Win32 (official release based on r1714)
FIFE 2007.2 src package (official release based on r1714)

Ways to contact the team:
IRC channel: | #fife
eMail: mvBarracuda AT web DOT de
ICQ: 98600423
MSN: mvBarracuda AT web DOT de
AIM: barrafife

2007.2 techdemo:

2007.1 techdemo:

Fallout support:

Feel free to add whatever feedback you like :-) Criticism will help us to improve the project.

mvBarracuda 11-19-2007 09:26 AM

Re: Open source 2D game creation framework trying to fill various positions *screensh
No fancy new screenshots this time but we updated our compile SDK for Windows systems. You'll need the new SDK to build the latest SVN revisions of FIFE on Win32. Grab the new SDK here:
FIFE Win32 compile SDK sfx 7zip version
FIFE Win32 compile SDK zip version

mvBarracuda 01-07-2008 04:02 PM

Re: Open source 2D game creation framework trying to fill various positions *screensh
It's update time!

It was pretty quiet in the last weeks. One reason were the number of university tasks but another factor was my personal lazyness and lethargy caused by the holiday period. Now FIFE is back with yet another news update :-)

Here is a nifty new screenshot of the currently work in progress editor tool:

Furthermore our latest blog post covers the latest issues we encountered but also progress reports from the audio module, editor development and pather front.

You can check out the whole news update at the FIFE developer blog:
Time for heroes - yet another FIFE blog update

Last but not least: we're of course still trying to recruit new developers for the project :-) Don't be shy and visit us at our developer IRC channel.

Kharn 01-07-2008 04:50 PM

Re: Open source 2D game creation framework trying to fill various positions *screensh
Nice update it's good to see your finally resuming work on the editor.

mvBarracuda 01-28-2008 06:40 PM

Re: Open source 2D game creation framework trying to fill various positions *screensh
It's update time again :-) three weeks have passed since our last official blog update and we're glad that we can report to have made several steps forward in this time.

To just summarize the most important points:
- We decided to revive the island_demo concept from the 2007.1 release and ship a island_demo like game with future FIFE releases
- View code changes to improve performance and resolve z-order issues
- Floating text renderer support for map instances
- VFS improvements for editor tool
- Vastly improved pychan extension
- FIFE documentation server with fresh doxygen, epydoc documentation generated on a daily basis; live IRC logs for developers
- Tweaked FIFE forums design
- Fresh blood on the team: two new programmers, one additional project manager
- New precompiled Win32 SVN snapshot available

Feel free to give the whole detailed blog update a read here:
2008/01/28/17.22 - FIFE engine repository - Trac

In case you're just interested in fancy screenshots we got something for you as well. Here is a list of all new screenshots that are shown in the update:
Floating text support:

Continuum graphics pack: 45&#176; rotation:

Continuum graphics pack: 135&#176; rotation:

Continuum graphics pack: 225&#176; rotation:

Continuum graphics pack: 315&#176; rotation:

Continuum graphics pack: playing around with rotation, tilt and zoom parameters:

Last but not least: here is the download link for the mentioned new SVN snapshot for Win32: Downloading ...

Kharn 01-28-2008 07:11 PM

Re: Open source 2D game creation framework trying to fill various positions *screensh
Nice update, is the gfx pack available as a separate download?

mvBarracuda 01-28-2008 07:36 PM

Re: Open source 2D game creation framework trying to fill various positions *screensh
Yep, here we go Chris:
RapidShare: 1-Click Webhosting

All credits go to Continuum!

Kharn 01-28-2008 07:39 PM

Re: Open source 2D game creation framework trying to fill various positions *screensh
Thanks mv oh i haven't had a chance to look on the wiki recently is the linux version the same as the regular download.

mvBarracuda 01-28-2008 07:54 PM

Re: Open source 2D game creation framework trying to fill various positions *screensh
On linux you should check out the sourcecode from SVN directly and build it as described here:
Building:Linux:SCons - FIFE development wiki

mvBarracuda 02-03-2008 06:53 PM

Re: Open source 2D game creation framework trying to fill various positions *screensh
We've done it again! We proudly present the FIFE 2008.0 release :-)

* Source package (FreeBSD, Linux, Macintosh)
* Win32 binaries

Screenshot of the new editor tool:

Youtube promotion trailer:
FIFE 2008.0 promo video

Theme of this release:
For the 2008.0 release we decided to pick up the island_demo concept again. Right: again. We already used this concept for the 2007.1 release but we put it on ice as we worked together with the Zero-Projekt developers on a different example game for the 2007.2 release. The cooperation didn't work out as planned for either side and so both teams stick to their own projects again now.

After the cooperation has ended we considered all possible options and finally decided to flesh out the old island_demo concept and base our future example game upon it. Although we were able to finish the initial planning work for the new island_demo game some days ago, there is almost none of the new planned content in place yet. On the other side the engine itself and the editor tool that ships with it now made _huge_ steps forward since the last release about 4 months ago. Therefore we decided to release the current status as stable release although it offers not many new aspects on the content side and the content that is in place is very likely to change with the 2008.1 release.

The milestone itself seems to be a very important step into the right direction. You can build your own maps now with the help of the editor tool. Furthermore a basic application structure is in place that should give you an idea how can create your own FIFE-based game. We'll surely adjust the structure of the island_demo client over the next months but this release is stable enough to start working on your game now.

This release is surely not the beginning of the end of the road for us, but it's the end of beginning for the FIFE development team. Enjoy it as we do :-)

Important changes since the 2007.2 release:
* New audio module with support for some more advanced audio features.
* Optimized view code to improve the performance and resolve map instance z-order issues.
* Switched back to island_demo concept; this will be the example game that ships with future FIFE releases as well.
* Ability to save maps
* Routing pathfinding (previous release only had linear pather)
* Pluggable rendering system with several new plugins included.
* New editor tool, which can be used to layout maps
* XML-format improvements: stack position, z-position, camera definitions, animation x/y offsets
* Vastly improved pychan extension; XML based GUI definitions
* Quadtree adjustments
* Ability to define own settings formats and interpret them from scripts
* Ability to attach cameras to instances (so that they are tracked while they move)
* Separate x/y scaling for cellgrids, allows more flexible geometry definitions (e.g. rectangle)
* Basic mouse map instance picking.
* Improved engine-script exception reporting
* Mouse cursors can be changed from scripts

Few non-code related changes:
* Rough task list for the whole island demo has now been created
* Vastly improved documentation with nightly updates for engine core & scripts
* Lots of new content gathered and created for island demo e.g. agent definitions, clouds graphics, music...

Read the full release announcement at the FIFE developer blog.

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