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Topic: The origin of Widelands

Gannaf
Joined: 2010-06-22, 00:10
Posts: 47
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Pry about Widelands
Location: Germany, Bird Mountain
Posted at: 2010-08-24, 00:25

Hello there. Since I frequently tell other people about the game, I really would like to know some more facts about its origin and how it developed from then to be able to tell some more things face-smile.png . The only thing I know until now is that the founder (Nasenbaer?) and most of the main developers of Widelands live in Germany (witch is also a nice fact to tell since im german too face-wink.png) Would someone of you like to write a wiki-page about that? Would be really great! Maybe it could be added to the GeneralInfo-page.

Edited: 2010-08-24, 00:30
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Nasenbaer
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Joined: 2009-02-21, 18:17
Posts: 829
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One Elder of Players
Location: Germany
Posted at: 2010-08-24, 08:04

Hi Gannaf,

you are right, that the founder (!SirVer) and the biggest group of developers is from Germany or other German speaking countries. However there are quite a lot developers from other countries and they are and were at least as important for Widelands as any other developer. face-smile.png If you take a look over the names on the DevelopersPage you will find proof for this fact.

And most important to me: (Most of the time face-wink.png ) there is a good climate between us developers.

Some of us meet in early january this year in Karlsruhe (!WiHack2010) - information can be found in the news articles we wrote there.

As far as I remember, Widelands was initially a project !SirVer started to learn more about c++ (but I am not 100% sure).

And one last more insight: !SirVer told me, that the name "Widelands" was just a fast decission he had to to, when registering the project on sourceforge.net - until that day it was just his beginning of a clone / rewrite of Settlers 2, but during registration he of course needed a name for the project...

I hope that gave you some more information and I hope I am right with all that I wrote. face-smile.png

Edited: 2010-08-24, 08:04
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SirVer
Joined: 2009-02-19, 15:18
Posts: 1438
Ranking
One Elder of Players
Location: Germany - Munich
Posted at: 2010-08-24, 10:00

I am happy to jot down some stuff I remember....

I started widelands to learn about the Settlers 2 engine (how stuff works, how maps/graphics/sounds are saved and encoded in real games, how they got this nice shading and water animations and so on) and to learn more c++ (I only dabbled in C++ programming before). So I worked on a map viewer for settler 2 maps on and off for some months and then let it rod for some time on my harddrive. That was in 2000; A year later, I cleaned up my harddrive and ran over this code again; I thought it was a waste to delete it and and I had no time working on it further, so I released it with a big-vision-description and a fancy name that I made up on the spot, when I needed a name on sf.net.

The name widelands comes from the view behind my parents house. There is small hill in the middle of green and when you stand on top of it and look into the valley, you feel that there is just so much space, and only green rolling hills everywhere. I always wanted widelands to feel this way, like "wide open landscape". I felt that widelands captured this feeling quite good - though I came to this name in less than a minute while uploading, I always felt that it is an excellent name for this project.

The rest is history, one could say: I began working on the project but the interest of the first graphician (Albert) and the first other coder (ixprefect) really got the project rolling. And as it became more awesome through the competence of others, it attracted more awesome people. Actually, widelands has been climbing the awesomeness ladder ever since I uploaded it on sf.net for the first time.

Who'd thought that widelands would become so awesome as to other people becoming interested in its history face-smile.png. If you feel that there should be a wiki page about it, why don't you go ahead and make one? I will prove read it for correctness if you like. If you need more information, just ask. I am more than happy to answer those kinds of questions face-smile.png.

!SirVer


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ixprefect
Joined: 2009-02-27, 14:28
Posts: 367
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Tribe Member
Posted at: 2010-08-24, 14:24

Nice to hear where the name has come from face-wink.png Sometimes, the best things come from a single moment of inspiration. I remember that, in the early days, it was actually still "Wide Lands", which at some point morphed into its own proper noun, "Widelands". I think that partly came about because white space is impossible in SF project names. In any case, I much prefer Widelands as a proper noun.

Oh, those old days. I remember the horrible two-tabs plus some amount of spaces indentation that was used in large parts of the source code face-wink.png And still, that source code was able to evolve to a point where now it even includes Lua scripting, thanks to SirVer. And in retrospective, it's nice to see how the project has emancipated itself from its Settlers roots (I was just thinking about the old player colour code, which was essentially a stupid system too closely based on what Settlers 2 did; but now it has been replaced by the much more modern player colour masks; and that's just one tiny example of this emancipation). It brings a lot of joy to see a project grow like that, even if it had its spells of inactivity over the years.

Off-topic: If there will be a repeat WiHack, can it be scheduled at a different time? It's almost certain that I will be out of continent again in the first half of January 2011.


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SirVer
Joined: 2009-02-19, 15:18
Posts: 1438
Ranking
One Elder of Players
Location: Germany - Munich
Posted at: 2010-08-25, 11:16

About the Wihack: I am currently thinking about making on from 30. october - 1. november (which is labor free day in most of germany). I am quite under pressure from work currently, so I am unsure if I can organize this....


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ixprefect
Joined: 2009-02-27, 14:28
Posts: 367
Ranking
Tribe Member
Posted at: 2010-08-25, 12:39

That would be nice. I would have to return on the 1st already because it's not a holiday here and I can't take Mondays off completely, but I could be there for two full days.


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SirVer
Joined: 2009-02-19, 15:18
Posts: 1438
Ranking
One Elder of Players
Location: Germany - Munich
Posted at: 2010-08-27, 11:26

I started a new thread for a new wihack. I also spoke with some people from the entropia. Seems like stuff works out.

http://wl.widelands.org/forum/topic/566/


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