View Full Version : Interview with Battle for Wesnoth creator David White

June 2nd, 2006, 01:03 PM
If you've always wanted to live in a world populated by elves, dwarves and wizards, you don't need to pay for a World of Warcraft subscription or buy the Special Extended DVD Trilogy Edition of The Lord of the Rings just yet. You could instead give Battle for Wesnoth a try an open source turn-based strategy game in a fantasy setting. For the practically minded, "open source" means that you do not have to pay to download or play the game. It was created by volunteers and can be freely shared. Even the multiplayer online part of the game is free (no ads or spyware either).

But Wesnoth, as it is often abbreviated, is notable not only because it is free. While its graphics are simple by modern standards, the sheer number of units and scenarios that are available for the game is staggering. This is where the "open source" philosophy comes truly into play: anyone can contribute art or new campaigns. As of May 2006, the forum where users can share and discuss their own art contained over 25,000 messages. Most of this art is made available under the same open source terms as the game itself.

Battle for Wesnoth lets you command armies of units such as archers, swordmen, mages and gryphons during the course of a campaign consisting of multiple missions. Typically, your mission is to defeat an enemy leader, but some scenarios let you liberate a prisoner, find a lost artifact, traverse dangerous territories, and so on. Your best units can be taken from one mission to the next, "levelling up" in the process. Even units of the same type vary in their abilities, making the tactical use of the right unit at the right time very important.

The game is reminiscent of turn-based strategy classics such as Heroes of Might and Magic or Warlords. Throughout each campaign, the player is informed of the progress of the story. For instance, in the "Heir to the Throne" campaign, the player follows the story of Prince Konrad, who must reclaim the throne of Wesnoth from an evil queen.

The game was originally designed by David White, who is still the project's lead developer. We exchanged e-mails with David about the state of open source gaming, the future of Wesnoth, and the collaborative aspects of game development.
Full interview here (http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/In_the_land_of_the_open_source_elves:_Interview_wi th_%22Battle_for_Wesnoth%22_creator_David_White)

June 4th, 2006, 12:36 PM

June 4th, 2006, 12:49 PM
Cool that there's an OS game but personally I am getting very sick of elves and dwarves. It's time for a good sci-fi game. Too bad Star Wars Galaxies failed due to SOE mis-management and bad game design.