Are you tired of spending $60 on new games? Do you think spending money on triple-AAA titles is immoral and want to vote with your wallet? Then you should check out the best open source video games, most of which are available to play for free.
Why Open Source Video Games?
First of all, there are varying degrees of open source software. For this post, we’ll use a simplified definition: any game that allows the public to download its source code is an “open source game”. Open source sticklers may disagree, but we’re going to run with it.
Of the many reasons to opt for open source software, three hold particularly true for games:
- Price. Open source games are usually free. I know, I know, open-source and free aren’t synonymous—but open source game developers tend to do it for fun and experience, not profits. Most are happy enough with recognition and donations.
- Trust. Many commercial game development studios (e.g., Blizzard, EA, Ubisoft, Valve) have poor reputations. They’ve lost sight of their audiences, and some even say they’re killing the games industry. Open source developers are more in touch with real gamers.
- Experience. If you want to create your own games, peeking at open source code can be a great way to learn new concepts and boost your skills. In some cases, you can also contribute fixes and features, thus leaving a tangible mark on your favorite games.
You might think that open source games are only for Linux users, but that simply isn’t true. That is one of the most enduring myths regarding open source software. You can play most open source games on several platforms. And besides, the only thing that matters is whether the game is fun, right?
NB: Games are listed in alphabetical order.