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Looking through many games on Steam, they aren't as good as 0 AD is. It would be cool to have it on Steam because more people would probably pay attention to it and probably get this game more views and more donations. Also there should be achievements once this game is fully out of beta and into release. Probably there would be a lot more people to help too if you put this on Steam as Early Access.

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I hope this will happen someday but not before 0AD becomes really playable and (almost) bug-free. 

Take CaesarIA as an example ( http://store.steampowered.com/app/327640 ), they got published on Steam very early in their development cycle (too early), then they got many bad reviews. Players expected an enjoyable game but what they got is just a pre-alpha game with missing graphics and many bugs. Now, even if the CaesarIA team members have been working on replacing the graphics, bad reviews are still displayed on their Steam page forever. That's something nobody would want for 0AD.


On 07/02/2016 at 8:46 PM, Palaiogos said:

Looking through many games on Steam, they aren't as good as 0 AD is. It would be cool to have it on Steam because more people would probably pay attention to it and probably get this game more views and more donations. Also there should be achievements once this game is fully out of beta and into release. Probably there would be a lot more people to help too if you put this on Steam as Early Access.

I agree with Palaiogos, Steam would make 0AD more popular, it would certainly attract new players and let players update their version of 0AD easily (thanks to the Steam auto-updates system), but I think it's too early.

In parallel, I would also advice to publish 0AD on https://itch.io/


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6 hours ago, sphyrth said:


I hope that this is the first item on your website's FAQ. Every now and then people who just found out about the game keep suggesting it. If the threads that keep raising this issue get on my nerves, then I don't know how you guys must feel.

It's actually a pretty nice question to get, it means that people like the game and want others to find out about it and like it as well after all :) But sure, it would probably help a bit to include it on an FAQ page :) Since it would be a bit silly with a page with just one or two items I'll create a new thread where you (plural ;) ) can help us come up with questions and finetune the answers :)

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The supertuxkart Steam state wasn't clear to me. Here a summary from their blog and github:

February 23, 2017, SuperTuxKart is on Steam Greenlight, http://blog.supertuxkart.net/2017/02/supertuxkart-is-on-steam-greenlight.html


Finally after a lot of requests and months of hard work we are launching SuperTuxKart on Steam Greenlight.
 SuperTuxKart was able to benefit in an indirect manner via better GPU drivers for Linux.

March 1, 2017: "WE ARE GREENLIT!!!", http://blog.supertuxkart.net/2017/03/weare-greenlit.html


    We are happy to announce that we got greenlit, which means that SuperTuxKart can soon be distributed on Steam!
    There's still some work to be done before SuperTuxKart appears on Steam,
    including paperwork but also evaluating options for integration with the Steamworks API and how that can be combined with our GPL license.
    Furthermore, it has not yet been decided how we might approach paid content on Steam
    How and when the first Steam release occurs is not set in stone for the previously mentioned reasons, and we will keep you updated as we have more information

April-May 2017 Steam-Wrapper repository: https://github.com/hiker/steam-synchron-manager

Steam TODOs on github: https://github.com/supertuxkart/stk-code/projects/2


    DONE: Get Steam user name and avatar, and automatically create STK local accounts.
    WIP: Address license issue - either by changing STK license to allow linking with steam, or designing a stand-alone application for steam interaction. For now done by a stand-alone application with an appropriate license
    WIP: If a stand-alone process is used, we should use timeouts to detect if one of the involved processes disappear (e.g. on windows if STK quits, the steam manager keeps on running :()
    WIP: Create one or two new maps for steam (and the gift package)
    TODO: Support Steam achievements
    TODO: Support STK online accounts based on Steam accounts
    TODO: Support Steam cloud for stk

July 8th 2017 on #supertuxkart as quoted on https://wildfiregames.com/forum/index.php?/topic/16476-steam-greenlight/&tab=comments#comment-333867


We have to use a steam wrapper (stand-alone processes, communicating via pipes) in order to use steam
steam api is closed source, so you need an exception in the GPL (... and is allowed to link in with lib_steam or so)
Since there is more or less no way for us to get 200+ people to agree to that, we were stuck there

August 24, 2017 Steam Release Date?  https://forum.freegamedev.net/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=7591&p=74286&hilit=steam#p74286


    issues that need to be resolved, including legal issues
    cannot give any time estimate at this time

November 20, 2017: SuperTuxKart 0.9.3 released


    we have done some initial work to get SuperTuxKart working in a Steam environment, so it can pick up your username, and even your avatar.
    But the main issue we have is actually a legal one: in order to publish a game on Steam we need to have a company.
    And while it is reasonable easy to create a small company in Australia, the main problem is the liability:
    what if SuperTuxKart should have a bug, wiping out a user's data, and we then get sued?
    Obviously no one of us wants to risk their private assets because of that (admittedly an unlikely and extreme case).
    So we need proper legal advice (with all its assorted costs) before we can proceed with the Steam release :'(

Summary: supertuxkart is not available on Steam yet, the GPL licenses are incompatible with most Steamworks API features, can partially workaround it with a separate non-free standalone process, the team needs to register a legal entity and figure out how to apply the donation policy to Steam. I doubt one can have the Steam linux GPU drivers that were wished in February 2017 in a GPL licensed application due to the stand-alone process workaround.

Commentary: At least some of the supertuxkart devs seem to wish to use the cloud, useraccount and leaderboard service. It seems a bit against the spirit of the GPL that one could not host a multiplayer lobby oneself with free software unless implementing the Steam features as a networked service oneself. It would be a bit nicer to be able to get the benefits (more players, donations?) from Steam without getting too many disadvantages (putting them in charge of the project directly legally or indirectly by service or money dependency).

The next post will show in how far Steamworks API and GPL are compatible or not.

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On the legal possibilities of having GPL licensed games on Steam, consider their documentation: https://partner.steamgames.com/doc/sdk/uploading/distributing_opensource.


If your application contains third party open source code that is incompatible with the Steamworks SDK, then YOU MUST NOT DISTRIBUTE YOUR APPLICATION VIA STEAM.

Which Open Source Licenses are problematic for shipping on Steam?

Generally, any license that has a so-called “copyleft” element will be problematic when combining code with the Steamworks SDK. The best-known example is GPL.

GPL requires modified versions of GPL licensed works to be licensed under a GPL compatible license too, but Valve does not want to have their Steamworks API code released (also their application key): https://www.gnu.org/licenses/old-licenses/gpl-2.0-faq.en.html#MereAggregation

What is the difference between “mere aggregation” and “combining two modules into one program”?

If the modules are included in the same executable file, they are definitely combined in one program. If modules are designed to run linked together in a shared address space, that almost surely means combining them into one program.

By contrast, pipes, sockets and command-line arguments are communication mechanisms normally used between two separate programs. So when they are used for communication, the modules normally are separate programs. But if the semantics of the communication are intimate enough, exchanging complex internal data structures, that too could be a basis to consider the two parts as combined into a larger program.

So GPL licensed projects can only use Steam by not using most Steam features and adding odd workarounds to use anything of that. Some of the features seem to be unusable entirely (for example the GPU drivers, screenshots, probably voicechat) since they would have to communicate to the separate wrapper process.

So to implement video or voicechat using Steam one would have to implement a custom voicechat protocol, but then why not reuse an existing p2p voicechat protocol without reinventing it and being independent of Steam? It's many small steps from not using anything of Steam and making Steam our hoster and software API and having main features of the game depend on Valve.

Other GPL licensed project examples:

  • Warsow was submitted to Steam Greenlight on February 9, 2013and was greenlit on September 18. https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=125965803 but never released.
  • Xonox is not submitted to Steam because they want to make it more stable first. They also rule out to use the Steam multiplayer services because they can't want to ditch their own platform: "There’s just no way currently we could do two way synchronisation between Xonstat and Steamworks - extracting data from Steamworks might be possible, but injection from Xonstat is impossible. In the end we might have to choose to use Steamworks and ditch Xonstat - obviously this is totally unacceptable, it’s out of the question.http://xonotic.org/posts/2013/about-xonotic-and-steam/
  • Blender and DosBOX - presumably don't use any of the Steamworks services, are downloadable free of charge at Steam and hence must be there for the popularity. They are also automatically updated, can only be used with Steam being started and Steam submits usage statistics to the developers (which seem like weaker reasons to use that platform in comparison to the popularity). https://store.steampowered.com/app/365670/Blender/ Worthy to note that Valve asked Blender Foundation to come onto Steam: https://www.reddit.com/r/Games/comments/1kbn7y/valve_wants_to_integrate_blender_into_steam_games/.
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GPL and Steam:

In order to test what GPL-licensed games are available on Steam Store and how it is implemented, I've installed Steam and installed Blender and Battle for Wesnoth.

In these two examples (most likely dosbox too), It seems there are literally zero functions of Steam in use except the application running inside Linux SteamOS, the auto-updating, possibly usage-stats generation, for which the software possibly wasn't modified.

supertuxkart intended to implement some of the multiplayer services and possibly drivers, so time will tell if they succeed in using the Steam API.

I wonder about Steam having to comply with GPL however. As far as I know if one distributes a binary, one is obliged to also distribute the source, possibly against a fee. That should be easy for them as they can just mirror the sourcce code and charge a fee. But perhaps they also modified the source code of Blender, Wesnoth or DOSbox in order to have the app compatible with or improved for Steam? If they distribute the binary, they'd have to distribute these modifications as well (if they exist) or ask all copyrightholders to relicense for Steam use, unless I got GPL wrong.

Battle For Wesnoth on Steam:


Probably most notable of all, this is also the first release to be published on the Steam Store, where it is available for free on Windows, macOS, and Linux platforms! We would like to extend a huge thank you to everyone who supported this effort over the past two years. Wesnoth made it through Steam Greenlight in record time, and your continued interest on our forums and social media has been extremely encouraging. We look forward to seeing new faces in our community!

  • Wesnoth developers considered Steam logins, but currently the software uses only wesnoth forum account for multiplayer lobby logins.
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I agree that 0 A.D. is already good enough to be and early access title on Steam. With a reasonable introductory price of around 10 EUR/USD it could certainly generate funds to speed the developement of this wonderful game. For instance to have a set of scenario and/or campaigns.

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21 minutes ago, wowgetoffyourcellphone said:

Figured it was proportional to the suggested $10 for base game. lol


I'd need some help stripping out and replacing any non CC icons and whatnot. ;) 

wath is CC?

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Well, I think a well polished campaign and some small perf breakthrough like threading the pathfinder could move things out of beta to be frank.

Especially with the balance changes coming in, 10$ wouldn't be much to ask IMO. Ardour for example charges for the generated windows builds and it works quite decently for them, I think Blender might have something similar (but they also have the projects from the foundation that bring in additional revenue).

This could be a virtuous cycle where additional funds allow for more dedicated work on core issues like performance, balance, single player etc, which polish the game more and makes more users want to buy the game.

But in my opinion, as long as 4v4 200 pop is laggy I wouldn't suggest putting it on Steam (discarding network issues).

Edited by badosu
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GPL is not a free license. Unless 0AD is relicensed under a permissive license, there is no way to use Steamworks SDK.

STK is apparently using Steamworks SDK in a separate closed source process and communicating with said process as a middle man. This opens up only the most basic of steam functionality.

GPL is a rather viral license in that it tries to attach itself to things it should not be.


"Keep in mind that according to the Steam Distribution Agreement you warrant and represent that you have all necessary rights to distribute the game via Steam. If your application contains third party open source code that is incompatible with the Steamworks SDK, then YOU MUST NOT DISTRIBUTE YOUR APPLICATION VIA STEAM."


"But I saw a GPL-licensed application on Steam!

This can happen if the author of the code that is GPL-licensed has given the permission to do so. The author can of course always (a) decide to grant Valve a different license than the author grants everyone else or (b) decide that what the Steamworks SDK does is just a communication with a service that does not invoke the copyleft requirement of the GPL."

Also, consumer protection laws can come in. This means two things, Wildfire Games should be a registered company (Hopefully an LLC), and Wildfire Games can potentially be open to law suits. Seems like a no win situation for the benefit achieved by a donate button.

Edited by smiley
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