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Free alternatives to classic/well known games
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2012 6:29 pm     Post subject: Free alternatives to classic/well known games Reply with quote

Just as the title suggests, this is an attempt to list free games that very closely follow a well-known product or franchise and can thus serve as an alternative to that particular game.

What I have not included on the list are multiplayer-only games, browser-based games, and all kinds of free-to-play and "freemium" online products. I have also tried not to include projects that make use of original assets like graphics and sounds (unless authorized by original copyright holders, as is the case of T2002), so games like Gods Deluxe or Return of the Triad are not on the list.

Any further suggestions as to what games qualify as free alternatives are more than welcome Happy

1. Free content replacement for original engine/engine recreation

Battle Isle 2200
o Advanced Strategic Command
Doom
o Freedoom (Doom engine)
Duke Nukem
o Dave Gnukem [download]
The Great Giana Sisters
o OpenGGS
Half-Life
o Black Mesa (Source)
Heretic
o Blasphemer (Doom engine)
Hexen: Beyond Heretic
o Zauberer (Doom engine)
M.A.X.: Mechanized Assault & Exploration
o Mechanized Assault & eXploration Reloaded
Panzer General II
o OpenGeneral
Quake
o Open Quartz (QuakeForge, DarkPlaces)
o OpenQuartz 2 (DarkPlaces)
o OQPlus (QuakeForge, DarkPlaces) [SVN]
Quake III: Arena
o OpenArena (Quake III engine)
o World of Padman (Quake III engine)
RPGMaker
o EasyRPG
Total Annihilation
o Zero-K (Spring RTS Engine)
Transport Tycoon Deluxe
o OpenTTD
Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness
o Aleona's Tales (Stratagus)
X-COM: Enemy Unknown
o UFO2000

2. Freeware clones

A-Train
o FreeTrain
Carrier Command
o Thunder&Lightning
Chip's Challenge
o Tile World
Crayon Physics
o Numpty Physics
Crimsonland
o Violetland
Dungeon Keeper
o Dungeon Digger
o OpenDungeons
Elasto Mania
o X-Moto
Elite
o Galaxias
o Oolite
Escape Velocity
o NAEV
Guitar Hero
o Frets on Fire
Herzog Zwei
o Herzog 3D
Lemmings
o Lix
o Pingus
Lode Runner
o SDL Scavenger
Master of Magic
o Continents [download]
Microsoft Flight Simulator
o FlightGear
Minecraft
o Manic Digger
o Minetest
OutRun
o RunOut
Paratrooper
o Dragon Fire
Planet Defender
o Planetary Defense
Railroad Tycoon
o FreeRails
o FreeRails II
o Railz2
Rescue!
o Rescue! Max
RPGMaker
o Advanced RPG Maker
o Mokoi Gaming
o Open Legends
o Open RPG Maker
o Sphere RPG Engine
Robot Odyssey
o DroidQuest
o Gate
Scorched Earth
o Atomic Tanks
Secret Agent
o Special Agent
Sentinel
o Sentry
The Settlers II: Veni, Vidi, Vici
o Widelands
Sid Meier's Civilization II
o Freeciv
Sid Meier's Colonization
o FreeCol
SimCity
o Lincity
o Lincity NG
o Micropolis
Stars!
o Stars! Nova
Stunts
o Ultimate Stunts
Super Mario Bros.
o Giana Worlds [download]
o Giant Sisters
o Secret Maryo Chronicles
o SuperTux
Super Mario Kart
o SuperTuxKart
Total Annihilation
o Robotic War
Transport Tycoon Deluxe
o Simutrans
Turrican
o T2002
Warlords
o Hostile Takeover
Warlords II
o FreeLords
o LordsAWar!
Wing Commander
o Flight Commander
Wing Commander: Privateer
o Vega Strike
Worms
o Hedgewars
o WarMUX

3. Free games inspired by classic titles (not exact remakes)

Age of Empires
o 0 A.D.
Anno series
o Unknown Horizons
Battle Isle 2200
o Crimson Fields
Battlefield series, Call of Duty series
o Blacklight: Retribution
Bos Wars, Command & Conquer: Red Alert
o Commander Stalin
BoulderDash, Emerald Mine, Supaplex, Sokoban
o Rocks'n'Diamonds
Castle of the Winds, Ancient Domains of Mystery
o Fame
Castlevania series
o Return of Egypt
Celtic Legends, Heroes of Might and Magic, Civilization
o Legendary Legions
Command & Conquer series
o Annex: Conquer the World
o Dark Konflict
Dark Colony
o Dark Hive
Descent
o Sublevel Zero (prototype) [download]
Diablo
o Fire & Dragons
o Flare
o FreedroidRPG
o Gates of Destiny
o Summoning Wars
Doom
o Harmony
Doom, Quake etc.
o Cube
o Cube 2: Sauerbraten
Dune II
o Arrakis
Earthworm Jim
o Kapitan Binarny
Empire Deluxe
o GEMpire
Fleet Command, Harpoon
o Global Conflict Blue
Frontier: Elite II
o Pioneer
Gradius, Castlevania, R-Type
o Hydorah
Grand Prix Legends
o Dolphinity Racer
Grand Theft Auto series
o Crimelife
o Crimelife 2
o Crimelife III
Gun
o Guns and Spurs
Half-Life: Counterstrike
o AssaultCube
o Assault Cube Reloaded
o Urban Terror
Heroes of Might and Magic series
o Knights of War
KKnD, StarCraft
o Bos Wars
Lost Vikings
o Lost Snowmen
Master of Magic
o Leylines
Master of Orion
o FreeOrion
Natural Selection
o Tremulous
o Unvanquished
Oxyd, Rock'n'Roll
o Enigma
Populous
o Reprisal
Puzzle Bobble
o Frozen Bubble
o Hex Bubbles
o Zorx
Quake III: Arena, Unreal Tournament
o Alien Arena
o Arena of Honour
o Nexuiz Classic
o Red Eclipse
o Warsow
o Xonotic
R-Type
o GazerStar
Scorched Earth
o Scorched3D
Sid Meier's Civilization II
o C-evo
o Conquests
SimCity
o City of Rauma
o Kylavanem
o OpenCity
Star Wars: TIE Fighter, Descent: Freespace
o Space Combat
StarCraft
o Priority: Survive
Solar Fox
o Solar Wolf
Super Monkey Ball
o Neverball
Turrican series
o Hurrican
Ultima series
o The Kingdom of Syree
o Nazghul
o Untima IX: Descension
o Zorak: The Mountain of Terror
Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness
o Dark Oberon
o Wyrmsun
Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos
o Glest
o MegaGlest
Warsong, Master of Monsters
o The Battle for Wesnoth
Warlords II
o The Wargame Project
Wizardry VII
o Escape From The Maze
o LostHero - Story of Gilgamesh
X-COM: Enemy Unknown
o Project Xenocide
o UFO: Alien Invasion
o X-Force: Fight for Destiny

4. Board game implementations

Diplomacy
o Ludus Regius
Risk
o JavaRisk
o NetRisk
o OpenFracas
o yura.net Domination
Space Hulk
o Alien Assault
Titan
o Colossus


Last edited by MrFlibble on Thu May 04, 2017 5:58 am; edited 35 times in total
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dosraider
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2012 8:44 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

A nice list Happy
And interesting.

THX MrFlibble.

And pinned Laughing
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 07, 2012 1:40 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice, thanks! Blissful
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 07, 2012 4:30 pm     Post subject: Free content replacement for original engine Reply with quote

Added Super Angelo as an obvious Super Mario clone/alternative.

Last edited by MrFlibble on Sun Jan 05, 2014 11:29 am; edited 2 times in total
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 13, 2012 1:27 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

There's yet another Super Mario Bros. clone, called The Great Giana Sisters, which was, however, never published on the IBM PC platform. The interesting thing is that a German developer, Rainer Sinsch, made an unofficial DOS port of the game called Giana Worlds (later renamed to Giant Worlds for copyright reasons). Eventually Rainer Sinsch contacted the creator of the original Giana Sisters game, Armin Gessert, who gave official permission to develop and distribute Giana Worlds:
Quote:
Copyright questions have been solved (07-07-01)
Yesterday I had a nice phone call with Armin Gessert (the original c64 author and inventor of The Great Giana Sisters). It turned out that he has the rights for Giana Sisters and he was so kind to give us the permission to continue publishing giana worlds (I am very glad that issue has been solved). In case you may want to have a look at what Armin Gessert does now try out the web-site of his game development company: http://www.spellbound.de.

(source)

Both the older Giana Sisters clone (1998) and the Giana Worlds game are available from download.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:26 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

Added the Giant Sisters/Giana Worlds games as Super Mario Bros. alternatives, and also Holistic Design's Battles of Destiny as a counterpart of Empire Deluxe.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:02 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

Added the following titles to the list:

Robot Odyssey

Scorched Earth

Wing Commander series


I've also found a couple of neat community-made Doom episodes that work nicely with Freedoom as a first episode replacement (the internal Freedoom levels are okay but they often have a noticeably different style):

CH Retro Episode
This is a creative reimagining of the shareware episode of Doom, with immediately recognizable yet subtly different visuals, and overall clever level design. It starts as a relatively straightforward thing but the levels quickly get interesting, and are full of puzzles and secret areas. The download link at the review page does no work but the file can be obtained here.

Simply Phobos
Another Knee-Deep-themed episode, but quite different from the one above. The author of Simply Phobos has a preference for vast, spacious areas, and also isn't shy of almost literal visual quotations from the original levels. It's equally fun to play nevertheless, and captures the atmosphere of the original game quite well too. In addition, this episode comes with an optional music pack in a separate WAD.
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dosraider
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 10:07 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

MrFlibble wrote:

Wing Commander series

Hell yeah, good stuff there.
Personal opinion: Vega Strike is one of the best fanmade WC games you can find.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:41 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a couple more Doom Episode 1 tributes that work with Freedoom:

Phobos Revisited
The aim of the author was to create a "same but different" kind of feeling, following the original levels quite closely yet introducing something new at every turn. Phobos Revisited was designed to run in the original game as well as with source ports, and it won the Cacowards award in 2004. Screenshots can be viewed here at the team's website.

Phobos Outpost/Planet Phobos
Another interesting work, this one deviates a lot more from the original - for example, the first level is nothing like Doom's E1M1 - however later on similar details and areas become more frequent. The levels here are supposed to represent a single, coherent installation (the eponymous outpost), and at the end of each level the starting area of the next one can briefly be seen. Difficulty is a bit higher than in other similar works, or in the first episode of the original game for that matter, but clever design makes them interesting to play. For some reason, the author renamed the episode to Planet Phobos at some point, although no content was apparently changed.

The same author also released an Episode 2 replacement, The Base of Evil (which was also renamed to Planet Hell later), however it doesn't seem to work with Freedoom for now because of a missing textures issue.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 10:56 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

Added Jazz Jackrabbit as another counterpart to Sonic the Hedgehog.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 11:35 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

Added Star Lords as an alternative to Master of Orion, and onEscapee as a counterpart to Another World and Flashback.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2013 12:52 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Added a working download link for Giana Worlds.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 6:40 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Nazghul is a very nice-looking RPG modelled after Ultima V.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 7:47 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

I've just realized that Alien Carnage bears a lot of similarities to the Amiga/Genesis version of Alien 3: the levels are timed missions during which you need to rescue captives and reach the exit, and one of the weapons is a flamethrower; not to mention several direct references to the Alien franchise.

Also, added Amulets & Armor to the list.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 9:15 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

Following some constructive criticism in another forum, I've decided to drop the liberated games part from the list altogether. I've come to realize that thinking of liberated games as some kind of Ersatz for other titles is counter-productive, and this topic should be addressed elsewhere.

Further on, I've separated the list into three sub-lists:

1. More or less straightforward remakes or clones of well-known games. In many cases the authors will openly point to the game that they are trying to remake, and if not, the similarity is often quite obvious anyway.

2. Shareware clones of popular titles, mostly from the DOS era. These are generally of historical interest.

3. Games that are definitely inspired by famous titles, but the authors have added enough ideas of their own to make these games something more than direct recreations. As usual, this is the grey area as YMMV what makes for a simple clone and what constitutes an "inspired by" game.

Also, the following titles were added:

Crayon Physics
o Numpty Physics
Dungeon Keeper
o OpenDungeons
Elite
o Galaxias
Lemmings
o Lix
Natural Selection
o Tremulous
o Unvanquished
RPGMaker
o EasyRPG
SimCity
o Lincity
X-COM: Enemy Unknown
o UFO2000
Bos Wars, Command & Conquer: Red Alert
o Commander Stalin
Diablo
o FreedroidRPG
Empire Deluxe
o GEMpire
Frontier: Elite II
o Pioneer
Puzzle Bobble
o Frozen Bubble
o Hex Bubbles
o Zorx
Ultima series
o Nazghul
Wizardry VII
o LostHero - story of Gilgamesh


Last edited by MrFlibble on Mon Jan 06, 2014 8:52 am; edited 1 time in total
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2013 9:30 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

Added some more titles:

A-Train
o FreeTrain
Carrier Command
o Thunder&Lightning
Duke Nukem
o Dave Gnukem [download]
Escape Velocity
o NAEV
Half-Life: Counterstrike
o Assault Cube Reloaded
Quake III: Arena, Unreal Tournament
o Arena of Honour
o Red Eclipse
Star Wars: TIE Fighter, Descent: Freespace
o Space Combat
Super Monkey Ball
o Neverball

Also added another section to the list, with the liberated games that have both the source code and all assets released for free, thus making it possible to create new builds of the entire game.


Last edited by MrFlibble on Mon Jan 06, 2014 9:02 am; edited 1 time in total
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2013 2:57 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Risk


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dosraider
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 4:14 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

MrFlibble wrote:

Duke Nukem

Happy

Still some minor bugs .... but really funny game, a well done clone.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 1:38 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I wonder why it isn't that much known (maybe for fears that 3D Realms might "cease-and-desist" it, like they did with Dave 3D?). leilei mentioned it in another forum.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 4:03 pm     Post subject: Re: Free alternatives to classic/well known games Reply with quote

Driller
o Driller (remake)
Elasto Mania
o X-Moto
M.U.L.E.
o Planet M.U.L.E.
NetWars
o NetWarsGL
Stunts
o Ultimate Stunts
X-COM: Enemy Unknown
o Project Xenocide
o X-Force: Fight for Destiny


Last edited by MrFlibble on Mon Jan 06, 2014 9:04 am; edited 1 time in total
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