Aquaria goes open source!

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June 3rd, 2010

Aquaria has gone open source under the GPL! Now all four of the games that pledged to open in the Humble Indie Bundle are officially open source -- the others are Lugaru, Gish, and Penumbra Overture. I am especially excited about the modding possibilities for Aquaria because of its excellent level editing tools. Here's a video showing an early version of the editor:

I show off their editor more in the beginning of the Aquaria Design Tour

This kind of freeform layer-based manipulation is the basis for most modern 2D games, so it's important to have good tools. Having access to a user-friendly editor like this could be a big head start both for Aquaria modifications and for separate total conversion projects.

I would like to thank the developers of Aquaria, Gish, and Penumbra for releasing the source code to their awesome games, as well as Ryan Gordon for handling all of the logistics and details to make it actually happen. There have already been a lot of work done on the games, and we are going to be highlighting some of the coolest patches from the early contributors over the next few weeks -- and hopefully more as they come!

Details from Ryan Gordon

Aquaria is now open source, rounding out the Humble Indie Bundle! If you want to explore this codebase, here's what you need to know:

Getting the source:

You can grab the source from the Mercurial repository here:

Everything you need to know about Mercurial can be learned from Joel Spolsky's tutorial at ... it's a fast read, and funny, too.

While many Mercurial and git clones will likely pop up, this repository will be updated with good patches, changes, fixes, and improvements from the community.

Getting the game data:

The game data is not shipping with the source code. Please buy a copy of the game (your copy from the Humble Indie Bundle will work just fine).

The code:

...this is almost the exact code that shipped for the Mac OS X version in the Humble Indie Bundle, with the (disabled anyhow) Steamworks and DRM code stripped out. The Linux version was built from a slightly older version of this code, but this code still builds on Linux. This hasn't been tested on Windows, and Ryan likely broke it in (hopefully) small ways. There's little doubt that any issues will be corrected within a few hours, though.

Mailing list:

There's a mailing list that can be used for discussion of the Aquaria source code. You can subscribe and read list archives here:

Things worth doing right away:

  • Make the game 64-bit clean. It's mostly there, but there are some pointers cast to ints and passed around in Lua that have proven difficult to track down. The initial code release needs to be built as 32-bit to work.
  • Improve the achievement code. Ryan added a quick-and-dirty thing to replace Steamworks. Make this a full part of the in-game UI.
  • Fix that bug that's been bothering you.
  • Clean out some source files that aren't actually used any more.
  • Build a mod.
  • Add some cool shaders and effects.
  • Render real 3D meshes for some of the characters.
  • Fix the "Li's twin" bug: (bug 4495).