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5 Best Free and Open-source Real-time Strategy Games for Linux

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StarCraft and Red Alert are two of my favorite real-time strategy (RTS) games. Though these games are closed-source, they are still playable in Linux through Wine. Recently, I have tried a few free and open-source RTS games and was really impressed with some of them. The best thing is that I can play them instantly on my Linux box without the need for Wine and without having to spend a single dime.

If you are into real-time strategy gaming, I highly recommend you check out these Free and Open-source RTS games:


Warzone
2100
Warzone 2100 was originally released in 1999 for Microsoft Windows and PlayStation. In 2004, the source code and most of its data was released under the GNU General Public License, thereby making it a free game. Warzone 2100 can now be played in Linux and is available in most distro package repositories. The game is developed by Pumpkin Studios and published by Eidos Interactive.

Although Warzone 2100 is comparable to Earth 2150 in many significant respects, it does contain certain unique aspects that clearly differentiate the two, including various radar technologies, a greater focus on artillery and counter-battery technology, more frequent in-game cinematic updates as gameplay progresses, and customizable vehicle designs.

Visit game website HERE

Glest
Glest is a free 3D real-time cross-platform customizable strategy game created by a team that is based in Spain. The game is set in a period reminiscent of the Middle Ages and contains two playable and customizable factions, Magic and Tech. Since the release of version 2.0 there have been many changes, including new units, upgrades, and an overall expansion of the game. Version 3.0 added online play over LAN/Internet. Glest has a fairly large community, with custom maps, units, and mods.

Visit game website HERE

Bos Wars
Bos Wars (formerly known as Battle of Survival) is a futuristic real time strategy game (RTS). Bos Wars is a free real-time cross-platform strategy game. Project was started by Tina Petersenand in the year 2004 and the current project leader is Fran├žois Beerten. The game is written in C++ and Lua and it uses the SDL library.

Bos Wars has a dynamic rate based economy. Energy is produced by power plants and magma gets pumped from hot spots. Buildings and mobile units are also built at a continuous rate. Control of larger parts of the map creates the potential to increase your economy throughput. Holding key points like roads and passages allow for different strategies. Bos Wars create a completely original and fun open source RTS game.

Visit game website HERE

Globulation
Globulation 2 is an innovative Real-Time Strategy (RTS) game which reduces micro-management by automatically assigning tasks to units. Globulation 2 brings a new type of gameplay to RTS games. The player chooses the number of units to assign to various tasks, and the units do their best to satisfy the requests. This allows players to manage more units and focus on strategy rather than on micro-management. Globulation 2 also features AI, allowing single-player games or any possible combination of human-computer teams. The game also includes a scripting language for versatile gameplay or tutorials and an integrated map editor. You can play Globulation 2 in single player mode, through your local network, or over the Internet with Ysagoon Online Gaming (or YOG for short).

Visit game website HERE

Spring
Spring (formerly known as TA Spring or Total Annihilation: Spring), is a full 3D free/open source RTS game engine originally created by the Swedish Yankspankers, intended to bring the gameplay experience of Total Annihilation (TA) into three dimensions. Games are played using one of a number of mods. The standard installation comes with a range of prepackaged mods, some which requires that one own a copy of TA to legally play them, and other Free Content mods which may be used free of charge without owning a copy of TA. Spring’s core game engine is licensed under the GNU GPL.

The game is mainly focused around multiplayer games over the Internet or a LAN connection. There are currently a few single player missions, built on the basic support for this through Lua scripting. There are also many skirmish AIs, allowing for offline play or extra players in an online game.

Visit game website HERE

22 comments

  1. Excellent collection. I've been playing Bos Wars lately and I can highly recommend it too. Warzone looks good so I think I'm gonna have to try it next.

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  2. I'm glad you posted Spring.
    It's THE best open source rts around IMO.

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  3. Good selection but I should add Dark Oberon (a game with clay characters) as another value RTS under Linux
    http://dark-oberon.sourceforge.net/

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  4. yay! you're giving me more options. cool selection =D

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  5. Everyone should definitely check out Savage: Battle for Newerth

    Its an RTSS

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  6. OMG I love that little penguin dude, he is just so adorable!

    Jennifer
    www.privacy.mx.tc

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  7. Pinoy ka pre?

    Na digg ka, congrats. :)

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  8. FreeCiv is the best!

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  9. Good stuff.

    While I fully support the open-source efforts I would just like to spread the word that Command & Conquer3 & the Kane's Wrath addon work almost flawlessly under Wine! You can delete vista now... no other use for it.

    There is a special version of (wine 1.1.2) that you need with the 'Cursor Patch' because otherwise you can't see the mouse lol.

    http://appdb.winehq.org/objectManager.php?sClass=version&iId=7440

    Runs well at 1680x1050 and the explosions and other effects look great. Happy happy joy joy

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  10. It's dogshit unless it has a dota mod built in. I hope my comment is insightful.
    -james

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  11. Is there version of spider solitaire for the linux os? I have an aspire one.

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  12. sweettooth said...
    Is there version of spider solitaire for the linux os? I have an aspire one.

    /slap

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  13. I would like to see civ 3 in linux or is it supported already?

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  14. God help you fanboys if these are the BEST games you can offer.

    No thanks, ill go back to playing whatever game i want, whenever i want without having to screw around with emulators, constant crashes, and bugs. TY

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  15. if you consider community designed software: of the people, for the people, by the people; unworthy of your interest - screw you. the best things are always created with a little elbow grease. if it takes a little longer, then i am willing to help, jerk.

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  16. Fanboys? where in this thread are people arguing linux vs windows? Was fairly civil and useful until your ass got here wasn't it? rhetorical question, I already know the answer.

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  17. I like this game.

    The video and screenshots show the view of the game from a variety of angles, but overviews make the nature of the game apparent. An overview of a vast battlefield, with thousands of units spread in flame lit eddies of battle across a vast vortex of conflict conveys the epic scale of this game.

    Most RTS games revolve around the rock paper scissors arrangement.
    To explain Spring, I will extend the metaphor. In a game with a physics engine like Spring's, two tons of paper can crush your puny scissors.

    A sheer view-darkening wall of scissors can merely ignore the rocks, and paper can meet some very sharp rocks.

    One mod for Spring offers everything from cloaked nuclear silos whose explosions can deform half the battlefield into a water map, deflector shields that warp enemy fire at random trajectories, wars consisting of public battles across a virtual galaxy, FPS only units with infinite range explodingsnipe-bombs, to construction units which can deform the ground into trenches and walls.

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  18. inhumangames.com Best free RTS game. needs more players.

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  19. I prefere the graphics and the challenge of the old MSDOS and Atari games from the 80's and the 90's. Those was must funny and realistics...

    Linux games made by the «community» are in late of 25 years on Windows and consoles games. Please, let me laugh of the poor examples you (and the «community») try to promote as wonders to the simple users...


    Claude Pelletier, QC, CDN

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  20. I have been looking for a good Linux rts. I am a huge Stacraft nut and I also enjoy other Windows rts games like Company of Heroes. I really hope Blizzard decides to make a linux installer for their games like Starcraft and Warcraft.

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  21. AnonymousMay 31, 2010

    Anonymous Said,
    January 3, 2010 6:11 PM


    I prefere the graphics and the challenge of the old MSDOS and Atari games from the 80's and the 90's. Those was must funny and realistics...

    Linux games made by the «community» are in late of 25 years on Windows and consoles games. Please, let me laugh of the poor examples you (and the «community») try to promote as wonders to the simple users...


    Claude Pelletier, QC, CDN


    Now, while I am respectful of your dislike to the rather vast array of open source games, let me point one thing out to you. WINE is NOT an emulator, which is what the name stands for. Wine Is Not an Emulator. Literally, that's what it stands for. Oh, and another thing. The reason linux doesn't have as many "good" games like Windoze, is because we don't get NEARLY as much publicity, and Windoze is owned by a monopolizing whore of a company called Microsoft (microshaft), thus keeping the amount of developers we have to a minimum. Plus, here's something I bet you didn't know, all good servers (yes, probably even the ones for XBL) are run on LINUX. The reason? Because it's better. At least have respect for what we do and don't make rude remarks, or you'll make a rather large group of enemies.

    ~Steve

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  22. AnonymousJune 25, 2011

    How about 0 AD then?

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