Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Tiberian Dream

I suppose it's quite awkward for me to write my first post in this blog on a topic that doesn't really concern KDE. Moreover, most of you have no clue whatsoever who I am. Let me begin by introducing myself. My name is Ryan Bitanga. I am a 21 year old KDE developer and user who began by using Mandrake Linux in 2000 and am currently using Kubuntu. You may have seen my name 2 or 3 times on aseigo's blog concerning KRunner. Well, most of the work I've done is for KRunner. :)

Unfortunately I haven't been able to spend as much time as I wanted on KDE lately. More pressing matters took center stage in my life and as of the past week or two something more interesting came up.

If the words "peace through power" ring a bell for some of you, you most probably got it from Command & Conquer. There was a project that tried to implement the original game, FreeCNC. 5 years ago, I wrote a patch for FreeCNC to support bindable hotkeys compatible with the bindable hot keys used in Tiberian Sun as well as mouse-over health check ups a la TA and RA2, (and most if not all modern RTS's). Unfortunately, the developers didn't respond to my e-mails, the codebase diverged significantly, and for a while, I lost interest. Two years ago there were efforts to revive the project before the two active developers claimed that no one was volunteering to work on it. Well, I did attempt to contact them and I know several other people did as well to no avail. So sometime this month I decided to make things happen.

The screenshot above doesn't show much. But if you look a little closer you'll see an infantry death animation. Majority of the work I've put into the program has been on infantry animations. You'll find that unit movement, attack, and death animations work properly. Infantry now also dive for cover when under attack and stand up a few seconds after they are safe. The idle animations are also correctly rendered. You'll see grenadiers doing push-ups and riflemen cleaning their rifles.

But these improvements only signal the start of better things to come. If you loved the original game and you're interested in helping, start by checking out the source code from

I am in the midst of rewriting significant portions of the code but would welcome your help, support, and ideas :)