Mark Damon Hughes  | Delver

I've just released Hephaestus, which is a complete freeware CRPG construction kit. Check it out!


Delver is my open-source single-player overhead-view tile-based computer RPG construction kit written in Java.

I don't really plan on working on it further myself, as I'm writing a similar new game instead, but I'd be happy to provide advice and storage space for anyone interested in perpetuating and completing it.

What this means:

Single-player
Yes, just you. I have client/server code that'd work with this with only a bit of modification, but it's going into something more impressive.
Overhead-view tile-based
Okay, sure, everyone likes 3D these days. So do I, most of the time, but this is fast and easy to debug, qualities very important for Java apps, and is reminiscent of the older Ultima games.
Computer RPG
Once I drop the personality and object module in, you'll have all the tools you need to make *GOOD* RPGs, not just hack and slash.
Construction Kit
This is the important part, really - I'm not interested in solving a single tightly-focused problem, I want to make tools that solve ALL current and future problems. In this case, that means you can change just about everything when making a game with Delver - the graphics (and boy do THOSE need changing!), the map, you can attach scripts (soon to be using a simple programming language) to places, creatures, and things, and generally make whatever you want of it.

You can then distribute your games by just zipping up the images and game file - I'll happily provide links and storage space for your games (and you retain all ownership of your data).

Note that at present, the game file is just a straight text file that you edit with vi or your usual editor, but a GUI-based tool and a binary game file are coming RSN. Until then, read the "gamefile.txt" file in the archive. It's very terse, I know, but it precisely defines what the format is.

Written in Java
Delver is a 100% Java application program - it is not an applet to run in your browser, you have to download it like any other application you find on the Net. Since it's Java, it will run on ANY machine that has a Java runtime installed.
Open-Source
Read the license. What this means is that you can make changes, but you have to uniquely identify them, your changes must also be open source, and you have to give me a couple lines of credit. Probably no great hardship.

I deeply apologize for some of the coding style and techniques in it. The // : comments before every method, in particular, are ugly as sin, but they work better than ctags.

It currently compiles just fine in JDK 1.1. I'd suggest that any future work stick to 1.1 compatibility, just because everyone has it.

Feel free to send mail to me at: <mark@markdamonhughes.com> any time you have questions.


* Delver v0.3 readme.1st file - READ THIS FIRST!
* Delver v0.3 open source license
* Download Delver v0.3 playable (200K)
* Download Delver v0.3 source (248K)

Last modified: 2001Mar21
Open Source release

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