Tonight's game on OpenPOWER: The Original Strife Veteran's Edition

I'm a big fan of Strife, famously the last game to use id Software's Doom 3-D engine, and a nice hybrid of light RPG and heavy action. The engine might have been old and the plot was more shooting than Shakespeare, but hey: the voice in your ear is named Blackbird. You can't beat that!

I actually do own a retail copy of Strife from back in the day for MS-DOS; I bought it new and played it on the 486 I still keep around for such things. It plays just fine in Chocolate Doom on this POWER9, but I later heard about Strife: Veteran Edition on that fixed minor bugs with better music and improved graphics, and even threw in some extra enhancements and achievements, but still kept the plot, voice acting and character art. It had a Linux version, but clearly one for x86. But that's not a problem when you have the source code.

The source code builds largely uneventfully as long as you have the prerequisites (Fedora 33 and I did not test on big-endian). In particular, it will want cmake, SDL2, libogg, libtheora, libvorbis, zlib, libpng and OpenGL. However, it tries to link against libSD2_main which is no longer necessary; after you've run cmake and make, it will fail with No rule to make target 'SDL2_MAIN_LIBRARY-NOTFOUND'. To get around this, edit (in the build directory where you ran cmake) ./CMakeFiles/strife-ve.dir/link.txt and remove SDL2_MAIN_LIBRARY-NOTFOUND from the single long line link command, then edit ./CMakeFiles/strife-ve.dir/build.make and just delete the line strife-ve: SDL2_MAIN_LIBRARY-NOTFOUND. Run make again and it will link.

Since it built, I decided to spend $10 and try to extract the game assets from the GOG pack. GOG gives this to you as a behemoth 400 megabyte "shell script" which is really a wrapper for a ZIP archive with a MojoSetup installer. Irritatingly the installer is all just binaries, but you can feed it to unzip and it will break it apart. If we list the contents of the file, it will conveniently ignore the header and go right for the ZIP archive, and the money is in data/noarch/game. Thus, do unzip ./ data/noarch/game/'*' and the assets will be extracted to data/noarch/game.

If you want, you can just move the files in game/ (maintain the tree under it, don't flatten it) in with the POWER9 binary of strife-ve, but if you don't want all the x86 binary crap you don't need, a quick find . -name '*.so.*' -print | xargs rm and rm strife-ve before you copy it over should remove the bulk of it. Conveniently, the GOG assets also include the original DOS version (in DOS/) and all the relevant WADs so you can also run it in Chocolate Doom or our OpenPOWER-JIT DOSBox, and another copy of the source code just in case you lose it. Anyway, with everything moved, if you run ./strife-ve it should then just work.

Don't keep the Front waiting.