Let there be Light

Posted in Development on January 2nd, 2015 by Newton – 3 Comments

Here is a short teaser video about whats going on in the so-called “lights” branch of our repository, soon to be merged in master and included in the next release.

We are currently sorting out some bugs still and checking whether all the maps are still playable with this change. One thing we discovered so far (see the video): All underground maps got much more challenging.

OpenClonk 5 Released!

Posted in Development on October 5th, 2014 by Maikel – 3 Comments

OpenClonk 5 has been released, with lots of new stuff to enjoy, so download it here!

So, what’s new?

On top of Iron Peak

On top of Iron Peak

Finally, music has been added! K-Pone has contributed three exciting pieces which you can hear in the game if music is enabled (Press F3 to toggle music). Under the hood, our sound system has been migrated to OpenAL and big plans are in progress to improve the music even more.

The league has opened. Compete online for ranks and play against the best of the best. Just press the league button when hosting a game to sign it up to the league server, then use your forum username and password to join. If you prefer cooperative play, the settlement and adventure league are also soon to be opened.

For those who rather play offline, achievements have been added. Achievements are little icons beside the scenarios which you can earn by playing through scenarios. In some worlds, you can get special symbols for finishing them in harder difficulty and some missions contain special icons unlocked by finding secrets.

We have also added new scenarios: The Raid, Deep Sea Mining and Treasure Hunt are beautifully designed new missions especially targeted at new players. Chine and Flooded Veins are two new worlds which can provide a challenge for the more experienced Clonkers. Finally, Fight for Gidl is an action-packed, cooperative scenario where you defend against waves of attackers.

Some new objects can be found in the scenarios: Underwater you can now find corals as well as fish both peaceful and evil. To secure your settlements, you can now also build basements available in all scenarios in the worlds folder.

And a lot of improvements

We’ve started a big overhaul of the missions folder by connecting the scenarios with a thrilling storyline. The hero is sent all over the world of Openclonk in a great endeavour to kill the evil king. So far, the first five missions have been integrated into the story but more are yet to come.

Bombing in the Raid mission

Bombing in the Raid mission

The worlds folder has also been reworked significantly. Most worlds got parameters to adjust difficulty and map size before the game so both rookies and experienced players can enjoy these scenarios. Maps have been improved using better dynamic map generation and features such as regrowing gems in the Gem Grabbers scenario. Short intro sequences have been added to introduce the game goals. Goals have been made more interesting in Gold Rush and Iron Peak. Finally, player knowledge and base material have been improved in all the worlds.

Additional gameplay improvement has been targeted especially at settlement players. For example: You should no longer be afraid of solid, single pixels as they’re now removed before you can get stuck on them. Acid now corrodes coal and firestone. Snow and ice can be used to melt loam. Pumping pipe heads shouldn’t get stuck any more. And many more stuff you have reported in the bugtracker, which we hope you continue to do.

Attentive players will also notice some work on cosmetics. For example, ice and gem sounds have been tweaked and smoke graphics reworked. If the cool graphics run slow for you, there’s a new option to skip graphics frames if the game is lagging especially useful in internet games.

… and of course, as usual we have done lots and lots of smaller changes and fixes.

Achievement unlocked

Posted in Development on September 27th, 2014 by Sven2 – 2 Comments
Stars are scenario achievements, selection boxes in the bottom right show scenario parameters.

Stars are scenario achievements, selection boxes in the bottom right show scenario parameters.

Two new simple, but very important features have been added recently: Scenario parameters and scenario achievements.

Finding the proper settings for your scenario is often hard. If you make it too easy, veterans get bored or finish it in two minutes. If it’s too hard, it’s frustrating or impossible for newbies. Now, scenario parameters have been introduced to help scenario designers offer their work to a broader audience. Scenario parameters are custom settings each scenario can define and players can select before the round. Examples in the worlds folder are map difficulty or size. But of course scenario designers can choose any parameters they want and have relaunches, team modes, etc. defined by the player before the round.

Can you imagine you’ve finished the insane version of Acid Gold Mine but have nothing to show for it? That’s where achievements come into play. In addition to parameters, each scenario can define small symbols which are unlocked and displayed in the scenario selection after successfully finishing the round. For example in the worlds folder, bronze, silver and gold stars are given for completing a round on normal, hard or insane mode respectively. Scenarios may also define additional symbols such as special marks you gain after finding a secret in the missions.

You can try out these new features in the latest nightly builds.

Mape now supports new map scripts

Posted in Development on August 10th, 2014 by Pyrit – 5 Comments

Designing an interesting landscape is one of the most crucial steps in designing a good scenario in Clonk. There are basically two kinds of landscapes in OpenClonk. Static ones and dynamic ones.

Static landscapes are defined by a simple bitmap in the scenario file. They are easy to create and can be really beautiful if they are done right. But one drawback can be that the landscape will always look the same every time you play the round.

If you look for more variety and a high replay value in your scenario you’ll probably choose to use dynamic landscapes. And Mape is the tool you want to use when it comes to creating dynamic landscapes for clonk. While you are editing the code that will generate the landscape Mape shows a little preview of the map in realtime in the bottom right corner. It also features syntax highlighting and reports eventual errors in the code.

Download Mape (Latest Snapshot)

Mape supports new map scripts to create even more complex maps.

Mape supports new map scripts to create even more complex maps.

The classic way to create dynamic landscapes is to define it with a special syntax in  the Landscape.txt. This offers a limited amount of freedom in the creation of your landscape because there is a certain number of patterns you could use for composing the landscape and you gotta stick with those.
Starting with OpenClonk 4.0, Sven2 enabled users to create even more complex and interesting maps, using a simple C4Script in the Map.c. C4Script gives you full control and freedom over the dynamic landscape generation. If a certain pattern is not predefined, you can just define your own functions and do all sorts of crazy stuff that wasn’t possible before! For example, put a dynamically generated castle with rooms and corridors at a fixed (or also dynamic) position on top of a mountain.

The next logical step was to make this new way to generate landscape work with Mape, so users have a fast comfortable way of editing these scripts. Thanks to Clonk-Karl, Mape is now “insanely useful again”, as he implemented support for the new map scripts generator.
We are looking forward to see which great new maps these new features will give us.

A complex maze generated by the dynamic landscape generator. Can you spot the clonk? :)

A complex maze generated by the dynamic landscape generator. Can you spot the clonk? :)

Deep Sea Mining

Posted in Development on July 5th, 2014 by Sven2 – 3 Comments
Both rubies and amethysts are required on this construction site.

Both rubies and amethysts are required on this construction site.

On your long journey to the Golden Mountain, you got stranded on a lonely island amidst the vast ocean. Surrounded by nothing but palm trees, coconuts and colorful fish, is there anyway to escape this paradise?

Your only hope is to build a long range communication device and call for help. But the device needs rare materials to construct which won’t be easy to obtain in the middle of nowhere. Both rubies and amethyst are required to finish construction.

Using dynamite to mine rubies deep below the ocean.

Using dynamite to mine rubies deep below the ocean.

Fortunately, the ocean hides many treasures. Precious gems and other resources can be found buried deeply below the surface. However, your breath is limited and aggressive piranha are waiting for careless clonks to swim by. Can you overcome these dangers and obtain the demanded material from the deep waters?

To test this new scenario, just download, unpack and launch the latest development snapshot and start the scenario from the Experimental folder.

The gems are well surrounded by both peaceful and aggressive fish.

The gems are surrounded by both peaceful and aggressive fish.

New YouTube Videos!

Posted in Development on May 25th, 2014 by Maikel – 1 Comment

Finally some activity on the youtube channel again. We played Acid Gold Mine for the nth time and decided to capture the round since it is always very stressful and hard, luckily we succeeded!

The music in this video is made by K-Pone (Island Dreams, Motorway). We are very grateful for his contributions and the music will appear ingame for the next release.

And another video covering melee gameplay!

Thanks for everyone who joined in these many network games and Arnaud Condé for a nice music piece.

Heavy Resources

Posted in Development on April 24th, 2014 by Clonkonaut – 1 Comment

This is the name of one of our branches (look here for shortlog) and I currently spend my much too short Clonk working time on this. Judging from the positive feedback I got so far, the project is popular among the devs and those people reading the forum (look here for feedback thread). This might very well become the standard in the next release and that is big enough to me for writing an article about it.

Heavy resources utilise the already existent ‘carry heavy’ library that you might or might not know from objects like the boompack or the barrel. In short: These are big and heavy objects that a clonk needs to carry with both hands, effectively blocking access to the regular inventory. Carrying such in melees is a tactical choice, in settlements it is slowing you down. With the heavy resource branch in effect, it will slow you even more, rendering the transport of resources more of a challenge than it is now (with a large space of 5 slots, the inventory is quite effective). Designing your transport routes will be a task to consider.

The clonk is carrying a heavy rock.

This clonk is carrying a heavy rock.

The first change with big impact is to prevent the clonk from scaling and brachiating while carrying a heavy object. The landscape, especially the shape you gave it, becomes an obstacles again. In addition, all material objects (rock, ore, coal, …) are replaced by a carry heavy version. Trees can be cut into logs which are also carry heavy. Refined materials (metal, planks) also get carry heavy.

What are planks you ask? Planks are obtained from the sawmill by cutting logs. Planks will serve as high tier construction material. The sawmill will change from a must-have to a nice-to-have building, giving you more freedom to choose the first steps into a settlement game.

My next steps will be to iron out all the small flaws that make handling the heavy objects weird right now. Also, I need to remotivate the graphics department because as you can see, the heavy objects lack proper graphics right now.  Testing is already possible for those who have downloaded the repository; just switch to the ‘heavy resources’ branch. I haven’t done any engine changes yet, so using an autobuild is possible. I will also see to upload a ready-to-go package with all game files necessary to play.

After that, me and hopefully everyone else will think about new ways to make transportation more exciting. Ideas are welcome. How can we make changing the landscape more comfortable? Do we need new buildings or vehicles to ease movement of the big chunks? Especially a whole lot of them?

OpenClonk 4.1 Update

Posted in Announcements on February 16th, 2014 by Newton – 1 Comment

We just released the first update for OpenClonk 4. It contains almost exclusively bugfixes.

Download here

Notably, the dependency issues with our Linux binaries (freetype and glew) have been resolved. Also, the 4.0 release inadvertently included the development test scenario folders Issues.ocf and Experimental.ocf which will be deleted on update again. Though, as the latter includes unfinished and experimental scenarios, it is still included in the development snapshots.
Also, OpenClonk works on Mac again now.

OpenClonk 4.1 changes
+ Fix game does not initialize when OS runs for longer than 30 days or so
+ Delete Issues.ocf, Experimental.ocf and Experimental.ocd on install (#1029)
+ Fix Mac builds
+ Fix DarkCastle null pointers and intro (#1034)
+ Fix selecting the clonks via hotkey (#1031)
+ Fix possible block in tutorial 2 (#1036)
+ Fix boomshire's door solidmasks (#1035)
+ Add option to link Boost dynamically (#1025)
+ Use pkg-config over CMake to find Freetype (#1024)
+ Make acid corrode coal and firestone (#1032)
+ Fix the pickaxe creating huge amounts of earth (#1030)
+ Fix update via *.ocu on Windows 7 (#870)
+ Fix issues with Crash.ocs intro (#951)
+ Fix statistics in player selection dialogues ignore linebreaks (#1027)
+ Change a LogFatal() to Log() when loading of a player failed (related to #693)
+ Fix a typo in English translation
+ Move Dialogue to Helpers.ocd to avoid copies
+ Fix save as scenario for Dialogue
+ Removed double Title1.png from Arena.ocf

OpenClonk nominated for Project of the Month

Posted in Development on January 30th, 2014 by Maikel – 1 Comment

Even more great news after the 4.0 release, OpenClonk has been nominated for Project of the Month by the Linux Game Awards initiative!

Project of the Month March 2014

Being nominated is one thing, winning is another … So we need votes, your vote to be exact!

You can vote here by either making a new account on the website, or by using your Google, Facebook or Twitter account. Many thanks for voting and increasing the popularity of our favorite game.

OpenClonk 4.0 released!

Posted in Announcements on January 26th, 2014 by Newton – 3 Comments

As announced, we released OpenClonk 4.0 on schedule.

Download here
for Windows, Linux

So, whats new?

Content, content, content:

The main new feature in this release is the new Missions scenario folder.
The folder contains 9 settlement challenges, most of which have been created by the hands of the the very master of settlement: Sven2. Clonk-Karl and Maikel also contributed notably to the creation of this folder.

Other than the Worlds folder (renamed from Settlement.ocf) which contains mostly peaceful settlement rounds focusing on simple goals and an open world, the Missions folder contains settlement challenges, often with a story, where all players work together and need to find solutions or engineer technical constructions to solve to reach the scenario goals.

Below, let me spotlight a few of the new scenarios:

VillageDark Castle

Kill the evil tyrant King Horax in this combat oriented settlement round, featuring a rudimentary AI to oppose the cooperating players. The scenario was announced in this blog before, read the article here!

Acid Drilling

You will have to pump an acid deposit from the other side of a volcano to a basin into your home base here. For the lack of other power options in this scenario, you will have to use pumps to generate energy to power the pumps transferring the acid… wait, what?
Yeah, Sven2 and Newton reworked the pump to be able to generate power: If you pump liquids upwards, you need power, if you pump them downwards, power is generated. The bigger the height difference, the more energy is consumed / generated. Here, you can put this to the test.

The other new scenarios are: Crash Landing, Ruby Cave, Deadly Grotto, Mine Rescue, Frosty Summit, Mount Brame, Acid Gold Mine, Skylands and Golden Mountain

LavaRaceThe Parkour and Arena folder has also been extended by a total of four scenarios: Hot Ice, Volcano Escape, Volcano Escape EXTREME and Heart of the Mountain.

The first two have already been introduced in this blog, read the article here. Volcano Escape EXTREME is the same as Volcano Escape, only that the volcano is erupting while you escape, uh oh!

The last one, Heart of the Mountain is a huge randomized claustrophobic maze in which you must find a tiny gemstone deposit and be the first to carry one ruby back to the start, without getting killed by the other players who are greedy for it of course. It is easy to get lost, so every player gets a spray can to breadcrumb his way around the cave system.

Other features

  • Quadrillions of bugfixes!!! No, honestly, there hasn’t been any other version of OC for which so many long standing bugs have been resolved. Those visible in the bugtracker are only the tip of the iceberg. The biggest bug hunters were Newton, Sven2, Isilkor, Maikel, Clonk-Karl and Mortimer.
  • Oliver Schneider, Günther and Newton implemented a feature that makes keyboard input independent of the keyboard layout. So, you are using DVORAK, Neo or perhaps you are French? No problem the keys stay the same.
  • Following some interesting discussions about how to make mining more challenging, Newton added the firestone material to replace sulphur. From firestone veins, you can dig out firestones directly, so you have an early access to basic explosives. Be warned however, that explosions on firestone veins could lead to devastating chain reactions.
    Also, Sven2 changed the pickaxe to not be able to go through granite anymore, making it a barrier more difficult to overcome.

There is much more, but I didn’t mention all the changes since there have just been too many minor improvements to existing scenarios and objects to mention them separately. Some new objects like the grenade launcher (play The Cauldron), giant cave mushrooms or the windbag (replaces the jar of winds) were introduced, Clonkonaut added quite a few sound effects and Newton optimized the installation size by about 20%.

Interesting for developers

  • A new, more powerful and and faster particle system has been introduced by Zapper. The particles are rendered much more efficiently now, making it possible to use particles much more extensively. Also, now as the particles are defined in C4Script via proplists, the developer gains more control over how the particles behave. See blog post and documentation. The fruits of his work can already be seen in the release, many particles have been reworked while being converted to the new system.
  • An even more dynamic way to create randomized landscapes. So far there was the possibility to either define the landscape through a static Map.bmp or through Landscape.txt for randomly generated dynamic landscapes. Now, Sven2 introduced a third method, Map.c which is even more powerful than Landscape.txt because it is executed as a regular C4Script. It can not only be used to create a randomized map but also to modify the maps as defined in Map.bmp or Landscape.txt. See documentation.
  • On that topic let me remind you that, Clonk-Karl added mape, a tool for editing and viewing Landscape.txts, to the repository. They are autobuild on each change to it’s source, see downloads page and manual and previous blog post.
  • Solid masks have been reworked by Sven2. Now, solid masks are set independently of the graphics. This, amongst others, enables to use solid masks for objects that use meshes instead of sprite graphics. See documentation and forum post.
  • Introduced cleaner, more upwards compatible way to save objects for scenarios by Sven2. If a scenario is saved as a scenario, the objects placed in the editor are not saved into a Game.txt but instead, the objects are serialized into Object.c, a regular C4Script file, in which only those properties are saved which are important for scenarios. See documentation and forum post.
  • Mortimer made debugging of future network (desync) issues much easier, he turned the DEBUCREC compilation option into a regular option, so anyone can turn this option now on to log huge amounts of internal debugging data for later analysis.
  • Many documentation updates (mainly Newton)


As the last content release lies more than one year in the past, remembering and gathering up all the features that were added during that time was quite the detective work. If I forgot anything noteworthy, please comment or write me and I will add it.

If you made it until here, I’ve only one thing left to say to you: What’s wrong with you, download and play already!! 😉

Have fun!