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Nexuiz Founder Licenses It For Non-GPL Use

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the don't-anger-your-base dept.

First Person Shooters (Games) 246

King InuYasha writes "Nexuiz founder Lee Vermuelen, along with several other core developers, have licensed the Nexuiz name, Nexuiz.com domain, and DarkPlaces engine to Illfonic in a deal to get Nexuiz on consoles. However, the kink is that the engine has been licensed for non-GPL usage. That is, Illfonic has no intention of contributing their code back to the main GPL Nexuiz project. As a result, Nexuiz has been forked into a new project called Xonotic. While the main Nexuiz site doesn't mention that Illfonic has no intention of contributing back, the Xonotic project FAQ explains what's going on. Additionally, the Xonotic project states that Illfonic 'may be in violation of the GPL as most contributors to the Nexuiz codebase have not relicensed their work for inclusion in a closed-source project.'"

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246 comments

I hope... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574196)

that they get pwned by the GPL in a lawsuit...

Re:I hope... (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574538)

How? It is just like if someone gave away popcorn for free and they are now charging them ten cents. They were the producers, they can change the licensing terms. Anyone is free to do what the GPL allows for the GPL'd licensed source but for the non-GPL'd you follow the proprietary license.

Reading is good... (3, Insightful)

coolgeek (140561) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574594)

Especially the part where it says they are relicensing code contributions without the consent of the contributors.

Re:I hope... (3, Informative)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574648)

They did not create all of this code. Darkplaces is a Quake1 derivative. They also took community contributions of code. Unless copyright was signed over they cannot keep that code.

Re:I hope... (2, Informative)

ffreeloader (1105115) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574738)

Ah, no it isn't. It's more like there is a group of people giving away popcorn because they believe it's important to give it away. Then a few people in the group make an arbitrary decision to start charging for the popcorn without the entire group's agreement.

If it had been a single developer who created the project and was the only one who had written any code then your analogy would be correct. It's not what has happened though.

Re:I hope... (3, Insightful)

teg (97890) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574778)

How? It is just like if someone gave away popcorn for free and they are now charging them ten cents. They were the producers, they can change the licensing terms. Anyone is free to do what the GPL allows for the GPL'd licensed source but for the non-GPL'd you follow the proprietary license.

Only for the code you own yourself. If others contributed, you have no right to relicense that part of the code - you need their agreement that you can do that.

Re:I hope... (2, Insightful)

vux984 (928602) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575038)

How? It is just like if someone gave away popcorn for free and they are now charging them ten cents. They were the producers, they can change the licensing terms.

Sure. IF they were the producers.

But what if I gave YOU butter for free, but under a license (i.e. the GPL) which improves your popcorn. And you in turn gave it away for free along with the popcorn you produced. (which is allowed).

Then you decide to start charging 10 cents for the popcorn, and are still including my butter. That's not ok. It violates my license.

You are allowed to change the license and re-license the stuff YOU produce, but in this case, and in most oss projects, the individual contributors retain copyright, and as a result the project 'founder' cannot simply relicense it, because he only owns copyright on his actual code. He can change its terms, but not the terms of contributed code. Separating the two is not easy, and the end result may not be desirable... like popcorn without butter.

Interested in seeing where this goes (1, Interesting)

Limburgher (523006) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574224)

I was surprised when I heard about this. I'll definitely be following it closely.

Re:Interested in seeing where this goes (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574246)

Yup, grab your popcorn folks, this one will be interesting.

Freedom (5, Insightful)

headkase (533448) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574268)

The people who contributed their code to Nexuiz under a Freedom license have every right to be pissed if their code is then sold off against their wishes. If the Nexuiz developers want to do so then stop stealing and re-write what isn't yours. The GPL isn't a charity to be exploited - it is a philosophy that says cooperation enriches everyone. If you don't agree with GPL code: DON'T USE IT and write your freaking own. Leaches.

Re:Freedom (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574346)

someone grab your mod points and apply directly to the headkase.

You must have an different definition of freedom (0, Flamebait)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574480)

One different than the one I do.

Because your freedom seems to come with restrictions.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (5, Funny)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574608)

And there you have it folks, tyranny is freedom! Without the freedom to establish tyranny, nobody is free.

(I know, I know - don't feed the BSD trolling)

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (1)

headkase (533448) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574656)

Software Freedoms [gnu.org] . If I get a closed-source copy of this binary the freedom to redistribute this derivative source has been violated.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (0)

cupantae (1304123) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574838)

I don't think that referring to somebody's own definition of "freedom" is helpful here. The bone that YesIAmAScript is picking with the GPL is that you are denied the freedom to keep derivatives closed-source.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (4, Informative)

headkase (533448) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574886)

Then don't use it. Anywhere. The Freedom to rip it off is not included. It's is - as someone else mentioned - Freedom for EVERYONE not Freedom for YOU.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (1)

pydev (1683904) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574982)

YesIAmAScript is picking with the GPL is that you are denied the freedom to keep derivatives closed-source.

If you distribute your derivatives under a closed-source license, you limit my freedom to study and modify the code you have written. Hence, I have less freedom than under the GPL.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (1)

cupantae (1304123) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575048)

You don't understand. What I am saying is that the GPL does not allow full freedom compared to something which allows derivatives to be closed-source. Obviously a closed-source license gives you less freedom. This is not news to anyone.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31575126)

That undermines others freedom to use my code in a non-gpled software.
Also as with a piece of art, viewing and studying it is a privilege granted by the author not a right, you are under no obligation when you use closed source software.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (3, Insightful)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575176)

You have less freedom under the GPL to do what you want with code. And you gain the ability to tell others what they can do with the code under the GPL.

Neither of these is a proper subset of the other, so it's difficult to say you have "less freedom than under the GPL".

My point was the author of the comment called the GPL license a Freedom (italics theirs) and it is not a license of freedom, like all licenses, it's a license of restrictions.

The GPL is only a freedom license when compared to closed-source license. Compared to other, freer licenses, it's really concerned about creating a commons than it is about freedom.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (1)

headkase (533448) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575338)

I've always viewed the GPL as democracy for software. It is an inclusive license not a divisive one. The restriction it does have against close-sourcing is there to preserve the, as you say, commons. Without preserving itself the GNU philosophy values of GPL code would be ripped off even more than now and incorporated into closed-source offerings without credit, recognition of ownership, or the Freedom to cooperate. Closed-source offerings that steal GPL code don't often recognize the irony that they are saying it is ok to steal their code as well. The basis for all licenses right now is copyright. I don't think it is ok to steal GPL code and by saying that I also don't think it is ok to steal Microsoft Office. If it is legal to steal GPL code then the same logic says burn a copy of Microsoft Office for WINE.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (4, Insightful)

Dragoniz3r (992309) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574708)

If you wanted true freedom you shouldn't've used code licensed under the GPL. The GPL's interpretation of "freedom" is freedom for EVERYONE, not just for YOU. So while you have free use of the code in question, everyone else has free use of any changes you may make to it. The idea is that if we leave it up to peoples' good wills to ensure freedom, we'll all live in slavery, so we'll legally force everyone to let everyone else be free. Seems to be working out OK.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (1)

g0bshiTe (596213) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574728)

You must not live in the US, home of the free, where your freedom does have restrictions.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (1)

cupantae (1304123) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574806)

You're right. Only BSD-style "do what you like, but don't sue us" licenses mean true freedom (unless you consider the right to sue somebody who did the work for you a necessary freedom). However, it is completely fair to say that the GNU GPL encourages continued freedom of access and use. If you invite someone into your house, you don't expect them to sell your stuff. If you violate the spirit of kindness that someone has shown to you, then you should be criticised.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (1)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574946)

"If I invite someone into my house I don't expect them to sell your stuff."

That's a terrible analogy. They are only selling copies and derivative works of my stuff.

Anyway, I was merely trying to point out how the poster used the term Freedom incorrectly. The rest of it isn't worth arguing really. The author of code has the right to dual-license it under the GPL. If they are changing the license on code they didn't write also, then it's a GPL violation and they'll have to stop. Because the GPL doesn't give you the freedom to use code you receive under it in that fashion.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575192)

We can argue about degrees of freeness, but the fact that there were debates about the use of drivers (wireless I think), from BSD into Linux, I think it is fair to say there are restrictions implied in BSD too.

Note, I think it is 100% fair to say that BSD is more free for the recipient than GPL.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (2, Insightful)

BrentH (1154987) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575212)

I never understand this argument. People always talk of freedom without personal pronouns, which makes the argument moot. There's no such thing as 'freedom', there's only my, your, our freedom. The BSD protects someones freedom pretty damn totally, and the GPL protects everyones freedom at the cost of basically not allowing you to distribute binaries without source. Trying to compare these in 'freedomness' is moronic: it's literally comparing apples and oranges.

Now I don't know if 'freedom' is shorthand for either of these, but if it's a measure of importance (which is more important, my or our freedom) I'd argue our freedom is more important (thus, the GPL). Just like how one mans ability to rule himself (monarchy) is less important than our ability to rule ourselves (democracy), even if it is at a small cost (I actually can do less than a king).

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (1)

HiThere (15173) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574844)

*ALL* freedom comes with restrictions. Sorry, that's a part of the nature of the universe. You can't even explicitly define a freedom that doesn't have restrictions.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (3, Insightful)

pydev (1683904) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574958)

One different than the one I do. Because your freedom seems to come with restrictions.

Freedom always comes with restrictions if it is just and equal, because your freedom to do something often implies a restriction or cost for me. The GPL ensures that all the contributors have a common set of freedoms, but those translate into restrictions as well.

The Apache and BSD licenses ensure that all the contributors have a different set of freedoms, and a different set of limitations placed on them.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (1)

calmofthestorm (1344385) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574986)

To be completely free is to be a slave to one's own temptations. Likewise, to protect the freedom of the community, restrictions are voluntarily accepted by participants. Similar to how you may want to stab people, but get together with a bunch of other people and make it illegal since you don't want to get stabbed.

That said, I personally wouldn't use the term "free" to describe the GPL. It seems to me more like a self-interested unit for the benefit of its members. If you work at a for-profit, you can generally reuse internal code for company projects. Think of this as a company for tinkerers. I'm a big fan of the GPL, but I'm not sure free is the best word choice.

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (1)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575022)

All freedom comes with one crucial restriction: you cannot use your freedom to take away someone else's.

Ironic, isn't it? But not invalid.

In the specific case of the GPL, it grants everyone the freedom to copy the modify the software, so long as you do it in such a way that it doesn't take away someone else's right to do the same. The BSD license however, gives you the ability to copy and modify the software, and the ability to forbid someone else from doing the same thing. Is that more free or less free?

Re:You must have an different definition of freedo (2, Funny)

mickwd (196449) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575258)

Because your freedom seems to come with restrictions.

Tell me about this land that you come from.

It would appear to be a place without laws.

Re:Freedom (1)

FooAtWFU (699187) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574482)

Leaches? They're like a percolating liquid flowing through the GPL code and dissolving bits and pieces of it to carry away (and possibly pollute the surrounding code environment)?

Or did you mean the parasites?

Re:Freedom (-1, Flamebait)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574500)

Yep, you hit the nail on the head.

If you want to be safe, don't use GPL license for your software, you're going to have to deal with a bunch of pains in the asses in the future if you ever want to do anything different from a license perspective.

GPL steps on its own foot so often its not even funny, do you realize what extremists GPL supporters have become?

Do youself a favor and use a license for your code that actually does have an open spirit rather than a built in virus.

Whats the difference between DRM and GPL? GPL is DRM for developers, otherwise they are the same, a bunch of bullshit restrictions tacked on by someone who wants to pretend they're doing you all sorts of favors, but in the end aren't really giving you anything of value while effectively limiting your actions.

Re:Freedom (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574604)

If you want to be safe, don't copyright your code, otherwise you'll have to deal with pains of asses in the future when they steal your code.

Copyright steps on it's own foot so often it's not even funny, do you realize what extremists authors have become?

Do yourself a favor and release everything to the public domain rather than support dirty diseased licensing models.

What's the difference between sanity and the parent poster? Trolldom.

Re:Freedom (0, Flamebait)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574618)

Someone mod this pathetic troll down.

DRM restricts use, GPL does not.
Futhermore these Nexuiz idiots are not the creators of this code, it comes from quake 1.

Re:Freedom (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574638)

they are giving you value: the code of theirs you're using.

If you want to be safe (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574658)

If you want to be safe, don't use GPL license for your software, you're going to have to deal with a bunch of pains in the asses in the future if you ever want to do anything different from a license perspective.

But if you have copyright assignments from all contributors, it's still perfectly safe to use code in a non-GPL program because you own the copyright. FSF demands such "contributor agreements" because it sometimes revises the licensing policy for particular programs.

So here's what you probably meant: If you want to be safe, don't use GPL code written by others in software that you may want to take proprietary. Instead, make sure you either own the copyright or have a fairly permissive license (e.g. BSD, MIT) from the copyright owner.

Re:Freedom (1)

Thinboy00 (1190815) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574780)

The GPL has an anti-DRM provision which basically says "If you use GPL'd code for DRM, the DMCA doesn't apply to it." In other words, if DRM is developed under the GPL, said DRM may be legally worked around or bypassed.

IANAL. I have no idea if that particular provision actually has any legal force (and if it doesn't then the last sentence of the last paragraph is wrong).

Re:Freedom (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574790)

Do youself a favor and use a license for your code that actually does have an open spirit rather than a built in virus.

Exactly! If this project had only been BSD licensed, the developer could have just walked away with the code and never contributed anything back. Or heck - anyone could. Businesses should take note. Develop with BSD licenses so your competitors get your work for free! That's obviously the best way to do things and avoids all this "virus" GPL stuff.

Re:Freedom (1)

yuhong (1378501) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574504)

On the other hand, if copyright assignments has been done, they have the right to do this. If not, hopefully the contributors will sue.

Hello jizz lovers (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574516)

GPL is shit. Capeech?

Re:Freedom (1)

Dancindan84 (1056246) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574546)

If they got enough of the core developers on board who's to say they aren't rewriting the whatever sections of the code they don't have license to sell? Does it warrant looking into on behalf of the developers who aren't on board to make sure their code isn't getting used without them being compensated? Yes. But we shouldn't be jumping right to, "OMG they're stealing!" when they may not be.

Re:Freedom (1)

ircmaxell (1117387) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574730)

Well, even just a rewrite won't be enough. They would need to re-engineer... Otherwise, it's just creating a derivative work (After all, if you have the exact same story, but with different character names, it's still plagiarism)... Either that, or use a blind coding technique (I look to see what code needs to be written based on what's there and describe the function to you. You then write your own code without ever looking at the original). But I'd venture to say the re-engineered work would be a lot easier to defend in court than one based on the blind technique... And if what's needed is large enough, it is likely cheaper to just engineer a new version from scratch than to find all the bits you don't have copyright over, and get someone to re-engineer them...

Re:Freedom (1)

santax (1541065) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574558)

Well while I fully agree with you, I think there is way more GPL code out there in closed products. Waiting for the DMCA to be lifted so we can reverse engineer it and check it. GPL/OSS is a system with one big flaw. It all depends on trust. And while this is very good in most cases it also means that there are parts of the world where the GPL has no legal value. There will be people using that really cool function and there will be companies that will build a businessmodel out of your hard work. But... When I see what the OSS community has done in so many great projects I'd say it's worth it.

Re:Freedom (-1, Troll)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574590)

To insure that people are using the GPL correctly we should make a program to insure our licence is being validated so we can assure that our Digital Rights are appropriately Managed and no one infringes on our rights to release free and open source software.

Re:Freedom (1)

e2d2 (115622) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574666)

It really depends on who owns the license. If it is GPL'd by the contributor then it's within their rights to restrict usage. If on the other hand they signed ownership over to another copyright holder then it's not something one can fight really. They should have kept ownership and in turn their absolute control over the source. I might be wrong, IANAL. All I know is it depends on the owner, defined in the license. Assignment of ownership is, rightly, up to the owner.

http://www.oss-watch.ac.uk/resources/iprguide.xml [oss-watch.ac.uk]

Owning the copyright in a piece of work, whether literary or programmatic, means that you decide who can copy it, adapt it and distribute it. By default, only the owner can do these things.

All I know is this - make sure you're okay with assigning ownership to another if you contribute to any project you don't own, including an FSF one. Otherwise insist on your own copyright in the source. I can't think of any other way. That's why the GPL in the source code I've released has my name on it and not the Free Software Foundation's. But again IANAL, so go fly a kite ;-).

Re:Freedom (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574694)

If you contribute to a project and sign off on the 'X Company owns this code now' statement, you know exactly what you're getting into.

If you didn't sign that statement, they probably don't own the code and they're breaking the law.

Either way, it has nothing to do with the GPL.

Re:Freedom (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574892)

As long as you suckers put the code out there for free, its going to be exploited. You had it coming.

COMMUNISM AT WORK !! BEWARE !! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574278)

Another case of communism at its finest !! Lenin loves you, baby !!

Re:COMMUNISM AT WORK !! BEWARE !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574874)

Yeah, theft of other people's hard work is indeed just like communism.

That's why the property rights of the owners of the code need to be upheld and the GPL must be respected.

keep in mind... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574322)

...that the situation with the licensing isn't all that clear. There _might_ be GPL violations. No prove yet afaict. I'm part of the Xonotic project anyways. And moving away from alientrap was the right thing to do. The project is more open now. No single point of command, etc..

id's code is GPL too (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574356)

The Quake engine that DarkPlaces is based on is also GPL, so they'd need id's permission to do this. I have my doubts that id would be willing to because if they wouldn't have used the GPL if they wanted people making closed source modifications of their work.

Re:id's code is GPL too (4, Informative)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574514)

Nope, id is happy to provide commercial licenses to replace the GPL in their open source offerings: http://www.idsoftware.com/business/idtech3/ [idsoftware.com]

Re:id's code is GPL too (-1, Flamebait)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574576)

Dollars to donuts these idiots did not buy one. Even if they did without LordHavoc's signoff they are screwed.

Re:id's code is GPL too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31575268)

Dollars to donuts these idiots did not buy one. Even if they did without LordHavoc's signoff they are screwed.

Assuming the LordHavoc who posted earlier in the thread [slashdot.org] is the real guy, it's pretty funny that you keep on questioning him. That linked post sure makes it sound like he's okay with the whole thing.

Re:id's code is GPL too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574746)

I believe that the DarkPlaces engine is based off of the original quake engine.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DarkPlaces

Copyright reassignment? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574400)

As far as I know (IANAL, IAAAC) the legality of this depends largely on one thing: did the code contributors reassign their copyrights to Nexuiz / the code maintainer, or did they retain it?

Re:Copyright reassignment? (1)

Shimbo (100005) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574916)

As far as I know (IANAL, IAAAC) the legality of this depends largely on one thing: did the code contributors reassign their copyrights to Nexuiz / the code maintainer, or did they retain it?

Two things: did they get copyright assignments from contributors, and did they get non-GPL licences from all the third parties involved?

What's really happening here? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574406)

Without John Carmack and LordHavoc (Darkplaces engine developer) giving permission, they're in a huge mess. I wonder if they are using anything slurped up from other Quake engine projects? Even if the submitter of the code signed off, doesn't matter if they aren't the original author.

Relicensing your code is fine, doing it to others... Well, people get in trouble with that with stolen commercial code as well as GPL. It's dishonest, no matter who it's done to, if it's not done with permission (either direct from all authors or through the terms of the license), they're opening themselves for a world of hurt. And destroying their reputation, as well.

If the only thing that is truly being closed up is the interpreted gamecode and they are developing new artwork, there's nothing to see here...

Re:What's really happening here? (5, Informative)

LordHavoc (1394093) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574792)

The engine has been licensed as non-GPL for Sony Playstation 3 and Microsoft Xbox 360, these are very closed platforms and the game had no chance of reaching them under GPL, publishers would not touch it.

IllFonic actively promotes the GPL Nexuiz for all operating systems.

The console game code is being started fresh now that GDC is over, no GPL claims can apply to it.

Note: Nexuiz 1.0 was to be a commercial game in the first place, but was GPLed for the enjoyment of everyone, this deal pertains to the name and concept, not the community enhancements that occurred after the original release.

Re:What's really happening here? (3, Interesting)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574936)

So all Quake code and community contributions have been removed?

Re:What's really happening here? (2, Interesting)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574932)

Without John Carmack and LordHavoc (Darkplaces engine developer) giving permission, they're in a huge mess.

LordHavoc is porting the Darkspaces engine to the PS3. I'm pretty sure that's more than enough sign that he's given permission.

Nexi-wha? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574414)

As a person who follows gaming pretty closely, I have no idea what this is or why anyone should care.

Re:Nexi-wha? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574620)

As a person who follows gaming pretty closely, I have no idea what this is or why anyone should care.

It underscores the risk of what happens when you trust random people over the internet to have your best interest at hand. It's a lesson hard learned, never forgot.

Lets test you. (1)

Tei (520358) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575344)

Open source games is the topic.

Could you list 4 open source FPS games? other than Open Arena, Alien Arena and Cube, please.

WTF is Nexuiz? (since the submitter didn't bother (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574422)

Google answers:

Nexuiz is a first-person shooter which started as a Quake modification in the summer of 2001

Name (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574454)

Glad to see they're keeping the convention of hard-to-pronounce sci-fi names.

Open source at its worst (2, Interesting)

macraig (621737) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574522)

This demonstrates an abuse of open source philosophy. It's an example of deliberately starting an open source project with no intention of keeping it open source: the intention is to milk the unpaid participation of others until the project reaches a certain critical mass - profitability - and then cordon it off. So here we have an open source project that isn't really, to go hand in hand with a "green revolution" that isn't really (because it's all just marketing)?

Re:Open source at its worst (1)

macraig (621737) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574566)

It might be less evil if the founders intended to SHARE the profits with all the contributors, but Hell's not cold enough for that yet, is it?

Re:Open source at its worst (1)

Shimbo (100005) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575088)

This demonstrates an abuse of open source philosophy. It's an example of deliberately starting an open source project with no intention of keeping it open source: the intention is to milk the unpaid participation of others until the project reaches a certain critical mass - profitability - and then cordon it off.

It really depends on how much community involvement there actually was. If it was 99% the work of the core team, and they have licenced properly upstream, then I say good luck to them. There's a bit of an absence of actual contributors complaining, as far as I can tell.

Re:Open source at its worst (1)

Dare nMc (468959) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575156)

I take it your not a fan of the apache/BSD/APSL style licenses, because they are setup to explicitly allow exactly what you claim as "milking." Also note, this is 2 different companies Illfonic, who purchased the license never open sourced anything (at least related to the current article), they just purchased a license from Nexuiz. Nexuiz has not said anything about abandoning their open source work.
This seams identical to what many opensource projects have done, from MySql to Apple and OS-x/Darwin. Would you rather they kept it all internal, or is sharing useful code; but holding back some allowed?
Of course it is a issue if they took free contributions, and essentially sold them without permission. But I wish more companies would open up their old source code, without fear of being bashed for still trying to make a profit if they don't also release all future work.

who cares (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574564)

Remember that licenses are private permit to do what was otherwise unlawful, and yes it is unlawful to slave-make software to give for free without charge because it doesn't pay the bills. Communism and capitalism are slavery in the hands of someone working ill will on another. Those that whine about property only anger because they didn't get a tax from it's use, where in that regard there is much slavery in government and tenant positions.

leave me alone to make my own choices.

PS: money talks, bullshit walks, shit comes from my mouth, and light from my ass.

Doesn't this contain Quake 3 Code? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574572)

Doesn't Nexuiz have code from Quake 3 when it was open sourced? Wouldn't that mean that if they close sourced the engine, id could sue them?
 
It seems they'd have a lot more to lose by stealing id's code and then being sued for money rather than merely stealing the code from people who worked on it after it was open sourced and then being sued to release the code.

Re:Doesn't this contain Quake 3 Code? (3, Informative)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574684)

Doesn't Nexuiz have code from Quake 3 when it was open sourced? Wouldn't that mean that if they close sourced the engine, id could sue them?

Id Software offers both free and non-free licensing terms for Id Tech 3. It could be the case that the non-free version of Nexuiz uses the non-free version of id Tech 3.

Re:Doesn't this contain Quake 3 Code? (1)

Dark_Matter88 (1150591) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574794)

Actually nexuiz uses darkplaces which is derived from id tech 1.

Id Tech 1 (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574908)

Actually nexuiz uses darkplaces which is derived from id tech 1.

Might we both be wrong? Id Tech 1 is Doom [wikipedia.org] . Id Tech 2 is Quake and Quake II. Both have been on consoles before, under the non-free license.

Re:Doesn't this contain Quake 3 Code? (1)

bcmm (768152) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574842)

The original Quake, not Quake III, but your point stands.

Re:Doesn't this contain Quake 3 Code? (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575194)

Why would id sue Illfonic when Illfonic obtained a license to the Quake1 engine?

Illfonic has obtained the rights to the Nexuiz's engine code, along with a license for the Quake1 engine. The engine has been licensed as non-GPL for Sony Playstation 3 and Microsoft Xbox 360, these are very closed platforms and the game had no chance of reaching them under GPL.

Is this legal? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31574602)

Nexuiz is built on Darkplaces, which is built on GPL'd Quake1 engine. Are they allowed to do this, considering it's based on a GPL code that isn't their own?

Re:Is this legal? (1)

guruevi (827432) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575020)

No. This could mean two things - somebody sues and whatever games/platforms the now 'closed' engine runs becomes open source or somebody sues and EULA's/software licenses get declared non-binding.

Re:Is this legal? (3, Informative)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575168)

No, that's why they also got a license to the Quake1 engine:

Illfonic has obtained the rights to the Nexuiz's engine code, along with a license for the Quake1 engine. The engine has been licensed as non-GPL for Sony Playstation 3 and Microsoft Xbox 360, these are very closed platforms and the game had no chance of reaching them under GPL.

From here [alientrap.org] .

Stop The Presses, whatever that means... (1)

NEDHead (1651195) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574706)

Stifling a yawn, our hero leaned forward, looked him straight in the eye, and uttered the thought that everyone in the room was thinking, "Hmm."

Some real info: (5, Informative)

Tei (520358) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574800)

There are a lot of quake game engines, most of then have a single person behind. Behind DarkPlaces is Lord Havoc.

  • Lord Havoc plan to commit to the GPL DarkPlaces version all the features that are worth it. This excluse any SDK bit, since the PS3 SDK EULA don't able to share that part. This mean that even if Illfonic will not contribute, Lord Havoc will, and that is what is important.
  • Illfonic have a license to use the engine from Id Software. And a license from Lord Havoc. If theres part for other people, will be removed/replaced by Lord Havoc code. The result will be a fully legal and Illfonic licensed closed source version of DarkPlaces
  • The new version of Nexuiz for consoles seems awesome. This is only good news for Nexuiz, that will get more exposure, more code ,...

We normally see the other route, ... a closed source game (Quake engine from Quake) open source his engine. A open source game is created from a closed source game (FreeCiv from Civ ). This route is "new", a open source game spawns a closed source game.

There has ben some discussions on the forums, but It has been mostly about the use of the name. Is like how Firefox started as Phoenix so got renamed to Firebird... (only to be renamed again to Firefox!). But this time Illfonic let the community continue using the name.. . Of course, some people really dislike the very idea :-/. To this date, not contributor has claimed steal code or something like that.

Vermeulen is a hardworking individual, and has push this game (nexuiz) for more than 9 years now (And If you have work on a open source project, you know how hard is to get people moving forward). I have only good things to say about Lord Havoc and the very high quality of his code. He control all the code of DarkPlaces to be of the best quality possible, this mean rewriting things to get to his standard of quality. Is this rewriting all code that probably has made possible to closed-source the engine.

HOW?

1) You get the original source code from the Id Software FTP, and a license for it (probably legacy, since is not for sale now).
2) You put all that code in the CVS. This code is the original, and you have a license for it.
3) Lord Havoc commit all his code changes to this CVS. Since he own his own changes (he is the author of these changes) he can do it.
4) The resulting code is both authored by Id Software and Lord Havoc.
5) This code is licensed by Lord Havoc to Illphonic (Illphonic already have a license from Id Software).
6) If theres some code from other authors, Illphonic acquire rights from these authors.
7) TADA!... you have a closed source engine you can use to create games for XBox 360 and Playstation 3 (I suppose lots of changes are needed to achieve this compatibility, but you have the basics of the engine).

The authors of a work can "relicense" his work. This why Id Software can release the quake source engine as gpl AND a different license. Lord Havoc is the same as Id Software, so is doing the exact same thing, releasing his work on a different license.

Re:Some real info: (1)

santax (1541065) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574890)

This is actually an interesting read sir. Thank you.

Re:Some real info: (1)

Tei (520358) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574980)

Thanks, hope this helps clear some lunacy around the issue, and the discussion is a healty one.

I have worked for the Nexuiz project in 2002, so I know the topic :-/.

Re:Some real info: (2, Insightful)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575050)

It's definately possible to prove that ALL nonapproved contributor code was removed, but it's going to be EXTREMELY difficult (see the AT&T/BSD legal battle...). In theory possible, but I think this is going to wind up becoming a very interesting test of the GPL.

"This why Id Software can release the quake source engine as gpl AND a different license." - That's a MASSIVE difference, as the Quake source engine was developed as closed source and then later released as GPL - it's easy for iD to prove that all "non-GPL" derivatives were based on a "pre-GPL" code tree.

Similarly, if LordHavoc had done 2/3) from the get-go, it might be possible.

However, taking this same approach with a code tree that has been GPLed for close to a decade is going to be a completely different story.

Also, what's the history regarding licensing of the content (artwork, levels, models, etc)? - These are all clearly "new" developments that have little to no traceability back to the original iD release, since the original content of Quake was NOT covered in the GPL release. Have all content contributors approved this?

Re:Some real info: (1)

Tei (520358) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575178)

"Also, what's the history regarding licensing of the content (artwork, levels, models, etc)? - These are all clearly "new" developments that have little to no traceability back to the original iD release, since the original content of Quake was NOT covered in the GPL release. Have all content contributors approved this?"

I think nothing of the original art from Quake will be in use. Its very old art, low resolution stuff, 256 colors.. you don't really want to go there. I have read that are tryiing to license some maps made by community menbers, maps that are already a "classic" or are very interesting maps, you want to play on the console Nexuiz.. Hell.. maps are about a 70% of what "made" a FPS. Is a separate thing to the engine thing, but probably will be handled in a similar way. If fail to adquire the rights to one map, will just ignore that map.
Anyway from the videos and screenshots seems everything has been remade with a fresh and very modern style. Thinks Tron Legacy meets Unreal.

Re:Some real info: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31575280)

"Vermeulen is a hardworking individual, and has push this game (nexuiz) for more than 9 years now"

After nexuiz release he lost all interest in it, for last 3 years of nexuiz development he doesn't said a single word to developers or community. And now he shows up and sell nexuiz behind everyone's back. So he pushed this game for almost 5 years not 9.

Who Cares? (1)

jerquiaga (859470) | more than 4 years ago | (#31574856)

Is anyone really all that interested in a game that started out as a Quake mod in 2001? Anyone other than open source bigots who are excited that they can play a game and it's totally free?

What this is: (1)

ThoughtMonster (1602047) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575044)

According to the FA, the controversy seems to concern two different but interrelated issues:

Trademark assignment and copyright assignment

The first is probably more clear cut than the second one. Trademark is controlled by the person(s) it has been assigned to. As long as Mr. Vermuelen holds the trademark to the name Nexuiz, or as long as there is no trademark assigned to anybody for the name Nexuiz, Illfonic is most likely clear on this matter.

The second, and most controversial issue is that of the relicencing of the Nexuiz/DarkPlaces codebase. Even though, according to the Nexuiz forums, Illfonic seems to have struck a deal with the primary developers of Nexuiz and DarkPlaces, I'm not sure if that would be enough. DarkPlaces is arguably not such a big change over the original GPL'd Quake engine codebase, and even if it was, I'm not really sure if copyright can be reassigned without some kind of consensus amongst most (major) developers. Does each contributor hold the copyright for his work under the GPL or do the contributions end up under a single copyright holder?

Regardless of the legal issues, this is a really crappy way to treat your community and developers. They have every right to feel betrayed. This forum [alientrap.org] thread is a great read, and proves that the community is sane about their demands towards Illfonic, Mr. Vermuelen and LordHavoc.

They've been /.-ed (2, Informative)

fredrik_haard (720279) | more than 4 years ago | (#31575220)

Mhm? There's an update up on the Nexuiz news page: "There appears to still be some confusion over this change. I would like to make more things clear: *Illfonic has obtained the rights to the Nexuiz's engine code, along with a license for the Quake1 engine. The engine has been licensed as non-GPL for Sony Playstation 3 and Microsoft Xbox 360, these are very closed platforms and the game had no chance of reaching them under GPL. *The Nexuiz's engine's prime developer (LordHavoc) is currently working on the Illfonic console version. The Nexuiz codebase will benefit from Illfonic's additions *IllFonic actively promotes the GPL Nexuiz for all operating systems."
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