Linux Tycoon, which the developer claims to be the “worlds premier Linux Distribution Building Simulation Game”, is getting some pretty big improvements in the near future. Not the least of which is a version for Android and iOS, as well as real-time online gameplay.
If you haven’t played Linux Tycoon, and you’re reading this site, I’m fairly surprised. Basically, Linux Tycoon is a game in which you create your own Linux distribution and complete exciting tasks such as adding packages to the repository and assigning volunteers to fix bugs. No, really.
What is quite a difficult feat in the real-world is turned into a serious time sapper in the video game world, as you compete to get more users for your virtual distribution and keep up public hype. Linux Tycoon certainly isn’t flashy, and at the end of the day the gameplay is quite simple, but it’s a fun diversion for anyone with even a passing interest in Linux.
If there is any serious complaint we have about Linux Tycoon, it’s the deliciously ironic choice to not open source the game itself. This is especially bizarre as the game has no DRM of any type, so releasing the source code (and allowing users to compile their own builds) is no more likely to cut into sales of the game as people simply putting the binary up on their file sharing site of choice. People will purchase Linux Tycoon because they want to support the developer, not because they couldn’t get it for free.
Online play in Linux Tycoon will have the player competing with others in real-time to develop the most popular Linux distribution. Not a whole lot of information has been released beyond that, though the developer did list the following bits of information:
– No subscription fee
– Game will still be DRM free
– Offline single player will remain
– Stand alone server will be released free
– Launching within the next few days
Even less information is known about the coming mobile version of Linux Tycoon, other than the fact that those who purchase the game in its current BETA stage will receive the Android build for free. It looks like this isn’t a case of mobile OS favoritism though, as further comments seem to indicate the issue is that Apple’s App Store simply won’t allow the developer to give away copies of the game arbitrarily.
by Tom Nardi