All posts from month posts/2007/11.

ODE debs
Ethan Ethan

In case you're running Ubuntu and not able to get Project Alexandria running, here's a build of Debian's ODE made on a Ubuntu system. It ought to get you going, but if it doesn't, please let me know.

Procedure for building these, in case you don't trust me, is outlined in the forums too, but it's a bit hardcore. You can install them using (as root) dpkg -i [deb file].

Thanks Suzanne for building these!


Posted Thu Nov 8 21:55:38 2007 Tags:
Gameplay video
Ethan Ethan

024-combatvid.avi -- AVI, 6 MB.

Recording the videos is done by capturing each frame and writing it to disk, a process that both throws away audio and slows things down like crazy. So maneuvers like these are perfectly possible in 12 FPS but a little less so in 30 FPS.


Posted Wed Nov 7 16:21:40 2007 Tags:
Ethan Ethan

Oops, minor dialog screwup in alexandria-r1. So, a bugfix release.

alexandria-r1.1.tar.gz -- source tarball (12.2 MB) -- py2exe'd Windows executable (15.8 MB)


Posted Wed Nov 7 00:02:38 2007 Tags:
Some screenshots
Ethan Ethan

Whoo, we're on the Internet! LWN posted the press release I sent them last night. Oh, the comments aren't so favorable, but I'm an attention whore, so any attention is good attention. Mostly they're just complaining about Carl's graphics in the screenshot, which is fine with me: if they'd downloaded the game, they'd complain about my terrible music.

Anyhow, here are some slightly less-dated screenshots from the recent release:


This is some of the first dialog you see in the game.


Inside the alien ships in "otherspace", the background turns into black stars on a white background. Of course, the pullbeam and colored flashes to indicate damage are also visible.


Posted Tue Nov 6 21:26:13 2007 Tags:
Press release


Linux Game Company Opens Doors

3 November 2007, New York - Sixth Floor Labs LLC, a Linux game development company, has launched their business today. Founded by Ethan Glasser-Camp and Carl Li, the company aims to improve Linux's desktop feasibility through the creation of high-quality games. Games are "sold" to the Internet community through the "ransom model" -- for one large payment, the product is released under the GPL and freed forever.

Sixth Floor Labs is offering up the next installment of their new game, Project: Alexandria. Project: Alexandria is a top-down shooter with an inertia-based physics model, like Asteroids. The first set of levels is already available on their website.

The next set of levels, called "the healbeam campaign", consists of 8 levels and supporting assets -- music, sound effects, dialog, and art -- that have been developed over 8 months. The one-time "ransom fee" is $40,000, collected through the microPledges website. The company estimates a month's work is all that is left to finish the campaign.

The Sixth Floor Labs is operating on the assumption that the open source/free software community has a difficult time producing high-quality games with the same facility that they have produced other software of all times. The ransom model allows the community to subsidize the production of games to offset the apparent difficulty that exists today.

The ransom model offered by Sixth Floor Labs follows in the footsteps of the Blender Foundation campaign, which raised 100,000 EUR in seven weeks, and the Free Ryzom campaign, which raised pledges for 170,000 EUR in twenty-five days.

The collection progress can be seen at .

About Sixth Floor Labs LLC:

Sixth Floor Labs is a New York-based company which has been operating in "stealth startup mode" for a little over a year. It is the brainchild of a Linux zealot that wants to give a push to the "world domination" plot. You can visit their website at .

Ethan Glasser-Camp

Executive Sous-Chef and Public Relations Officer

ethan at this site

In case you're looking for the first release, which is already GPLed and freely available, it can be found at Final release 1!.

Posted Mon Nov 5 22:55:05 2007 Tags:
Final release 1!
Ethan Ethan

This is our official "first release" of Project Alexandria, also known as the "training" campaign. It represents the "launch" of our site and business. We'll still be getting pieces together for the rest of the night, but I'm very excited!

If you've played r1-rc3, the main changes are: a slightly improved AI on the enemies, some slightly better dialog, and some cleaned-up level structure (the test levels are now in a separate tests/ directory).

alexandria-r1.tar.gz -- source tarball (12.2 MB) -- py2exe'd Windows executable (15.8 MB)

Requirements are: python >= 2.4, pygame >= 1.7.1, ODE >= 0.7, pyode >= 1.2.0, Numeric. All of these are in Debian unstable. Also required: a pretty fast computer. An FPS counter appears in the lower-right of the screen if FPS drops below 27; ideally it should be hitting 30.

In case you're new here, the Sixth Floor Labs is a company whose business is the production of high-quality, GPLed Linux games. See about for more information.


Posted Mon Nov 5 18:44:34 2007 Tags:
Another day
Ethan Ethan

Forgot to post yesterday night too. We turned out not to go live yesterday but hopefully instead today. I need to get a few things from Chiz and Carl first.

Mondays are meetings with Carl's advisor! Let's see how that goes.


Posted Mon Nov 5 08:27:23 2007 Tags:
Crunch time
Ethan Ethan

So, forgot to make a post yesterday. I think the two songs I was working on are as done as they'll be -- the first one is called "Sipping Hot Chocolate" and the second one is probably going to be called "Deadlines". They'll be in the ransom'd healbeam campaign. I won't say they're great, but they approximate music.

I've been working on this new level design -- healbeam-new5 -- it's kind of bad that I'm still creating levels this close to the deadline, but this one should be better than the old healbeam5. Plus, it means I don't have to work on the human AI too much.

I feel really good, even though deadlines loom. Everything is going to be OK. Crunch time is actually my favorite time.


Posted Sun Nov 4 12:08:18 2007 Tags:
More musical woes
Ethan Ethan

So, the song I was working on when I wrote the despairful post yesterday seems to be coming out OK. The other song, though; I'm going crazy trying to get this transition to sound smooth. It shouldn't even be a very hard transition. I guess the difficulty comes from all the constraints I'm putting on it: I want it to have the same rhythm, I want it to have the same "feel". I keep trying things and they keep sounding like crap. I'm gonna jot down this one last attempt for tonight and then think about bed.


Posted Fri Nov 2 22:39:19 2007 Tags:
Music sucks
Ethan Ethan

As deadlines approach, I become more and more haphazard with my musicianship. I'm apologizing immediately for the low, low quality of these songs -- they're even worse than the other ones. I'm sorry. That's pretty much it, I'm just horribly sorry.


Posted Thu Nov 1 20:25:56 2007 Tags:
Last edited Sat Feb 9 14:22:22 2008