Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

What Does Linux and Role Playing Games Have in Common?

As a recently revived Game Master/DM going back to my RPG roots in Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, 1st Edition after about a 20 year absence, I find that computer technology has impacted Role Playing Games far beyond being able to play online.

People have been working over the years to "free gaming". Yes, Free in the same terms as open Source software that we use today. Both "free beer" and "Free-dom".

Linux has an Open Source License in the GPL and RPG's have the Open Game License. Due to the proprietariness of many of the original artwork and story content of the gaming modules of games like Advanced Dungeons & Dragons and other game systems, it has become very difficult to access new "modules" or published adventures in which to continue playing the game people have become so fervent over.

Thus, the Open Game License was created to allow "near beer" versions of traditional games systems that allow fans and groups to legally "side step" those proprietary concerns of the original games and still continue to publish and make available new content for game systems that are no longer sold or are out of print but still under copyright.

It's a legal tightrope walk to be sure. Avid fans and supporters work very hard to stick to the rules in order to keep their favorite games alive. The good news...it's working.

Open licenses have far trancended the software universe and continue to have meaningful impact on very diverse areas of social life. I'm not entirely sure that table top RPg's could not only continue to exist but actually are experiencing growth in the ranks, without Open licensing.

The fight for "open-ness" is a good fight and goes way beyond making access of software and media accessible to the masses. Stiking a victory for open licenses in one arena is a victory for open licences in other arenas as well.

More in Tux Machines

Android Build Support Improved For Libdrm

Emil Velikov, the new Mesa release manager, just landed a large set of libdrm patches for improving the open-source graphics drivers for Android. Emil enabled Android build support within Mesa's DRM library (libdrm) for the Intel driver along with the Freedreno (reverse-engineered Qualcomm Adreno), Nouveau, and Radeon drivers. Up to now any Android support wasn't part of mainline libdrm and landed today in time for the next update, libdrm v2.4.57. At this time there's no Android updates to talk about for the Mesa/Gallium3D drivers themselves. The new Mesa release manager has also been working on some other Mesa build improvements recently like working on make dist support. Read more

THE AWESOMELY EPIC GUIDE TO KDE

Desktops on Linux. They’re a concept completely alien to users of other operating systems because they never having to think about them. Desktops must feel like the abstract idea of time to the Amondawa tribe, a thought that doesn’t have any use until you’re in a different environment. But here it is – on Linux you don’t have to use the graphical environment lurking beneath your mouse cursor. You can change it for something completely different. If you don’t like windows, switch to xmonad. If you like full-screen apps, try Gnome. And if you’re after the most powerful and configurable point-and-click desktop, there’s KDE. KDE is wonderful, as they all are in their own way. But in our opinion, KDE in particular suffers from poor default configuration and a rather allusive learning curve. This is doubly frustrating, firstly because it has been quietly growing more brilliant over the last couple of years, and secondly, because KDE should be the first choice for users unhappy with their old desktop – in particular, Windows 8 users pining for an interface that makes sense. But fear not. We’re going to use a decade’s worth of KDE firefighting to bring you the definitive guide to making KDE look good and function slightly more like how you might expect it to. We’re not going to look at KDE’s applications, other than perhaps Dolphin; we’re instead going to look at the functionality in the desktop environment itself. And while our guinea pig distribution is going to be Mageia, this guide will be equally applicable to any recent KDE desktop running from almost any distribution, so don’t let the default Mageia background put you off. Read more

The Trouble With Android

Don’t get me wrong, Android is a beautiful operating system if ever there was one – and dumbed down to the max, which makes it even more beautiful in the minds of many mobile users. Indeed, you can play on an Android device all day without ever even realizing that you’re working with an operating system or even a computer. Just swipe away and see what they’ll try to sell you next. Read more

Try GNOME 3.14 Beta 1 with Wayland Without Installing Anything

GNOME is working to implement official Wayland support for the upcoming 3.14 release and they seem to be more than half way there. It's difficult to test the new GNOME 3.14 Beta updates that have been made until now, especially with the Wayland integration, but a Reddit user posted a short and easy-to-follow tutorial in this regard. Read more