Introversion Software are planning to release an Uplink Developer CD. This CD will contain, amoungst other things, the complete source code to Uplink and all supporting tools and libraries.
This Developer CD has been a heated topic of discussion at Introversion for some time. We've had plenty of arguments about the pros and cons of releasing the source to the public. There has always been a plan to release the source code to Uplink at some point, but this has never been possible due to commercial licensing problems - Introversion could easily be put out of business if loads of free Uplink clones started appearing on the market. We eventually came to the conclusion that we'd have to wait until Uplink was no longer a "commercial" product - but this means we'd be looking at sometime mid 2004 at the earliest.
We've decided to bring that date forward. We will have to impose a license on the use of the source code - this won't be Open Source - and we will be charging for that license. This means we will be keeping fairly close control over this release. We certainly haven't hammered out all of the details yet, but this is going to happen and we're hoping the Developer CD will be ready for release in around one month.
We will also introduce a new forum channel, but we'll keep it closed to the public and only allow genuine Uplink developers inside. This will be the perfect place for programmers to talk about the Uplink source code and their mods, and to get help from the Developers themselves.
This really is a fantastic opportunity for people to do whatever they want with the Uplink source code. You could create new mission types, or add in your very own plot. You could create new computer types. New easter eggs. If you were feeling particularly ambitious you might try and create a whole new type of system to attack - just like the LAN systems we introduced in patch1.2 - complete with new graphics, new software tools, new challenges. You could even try and add more networking functionality to the game - but only if you're really brave In short, there are a million things a determined programmer could do with this source code.
All of the information about this Developer CD is available here. We still need to sort out the License, and the Price. You can help us by answering the question on that page. There is also a mailing list if you want to be kept updated.
So there you go, that was the big announcement, and would you believe we actually managed it on time. We had a lot of fun watching people speculate about what it might be. Amoungst the possibilities were Mac versions, Pocket PC versions, new game information, new patches, and occasionally source code releases. Hopefully we built up at least a little tension in you, and hopefully you're feeling suitably excited now that the truth is out. I think this Developer CD could really help revitalise Uplink, providing we get the right sort of support from the right sort of people.
I've started a new discussion in the forums, in the channel "The Future". Please have your say. We are particularly interested in your thoughts on the License, and the Cost.
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