18 months The Butterfly Effect - what can an open source game achieve?

Authors: Klaas van Gend and Peter van Ginneken

May 2009, Peter and Klaas finally decided to make an open source version of the world-famous computer game "The Incredible Machine" (or TIM in short). Eighteen months have passed. We're well over a thousand commits in SVN. The game exists, has 40+ levels and is slowly gathering a community. Apart from discussing the programming of the game itself, this is a story of trial and error, looking at the competition, figuring out how to get publicity and a serious dose of "what have we learned".

First hour
T-DOSE features a two-hour presentation about "The Butterfly Effect" computer game.

In the first hour, we will introduce why we started the project and dive into the technology behind this game, which is essentially an open source attempt to create a game that has some similiarities to the 1995 computergame "The Incredible Machine". We will discuss modelling of several parts of the game, using actual physics, tweaked physics or outright faked physics. We will dive into the Butterfly, Balloon and Coke bottle models. If time permits, we will also dive into the Level Creator.

In the second hour, we will dive into the playability and play levels from the game with the audience.

Second hour
T-DOSE features a two-hour presentation about "The Butterfly Effect" computer game. The first hour featured the technology behind the game.

In the second hour, we will again briefly introduce the "why" of this open source, physics-based, interpretation of "The Incredible Machine".

This hour, the main focus will be on gameplay. We will invite the audience to suggest solutions to several levels. There are prizes to be won for completing a level and for original cheats. Learn how strong butterflies can be, and why balloons don't like Cactuses.