The Questions That Would be Asked Frequently
(If People Asked Any Questions)

Q: So what is Xarble?
A:            Well, Xarble is a computer game for Linux/X11 that we (we being collectively Kandarp Patel, Sherman Mui, and David Ghandehari) have been working on (well, on and off) for about 2.5 years now.
           It's now looking like Kandarp and Sherman have dropped the project for the time being, but I'm still here, and I'm going to stick it out to the end, gosh-darnit!
           It looks like my roommate Chris Casey has joined the ranks of the Xarble team.  Say "hi" to Chris!

Q: Two and a half years?  You must have a lot done!
A:            Hehe, well it's funny that you say that, because actually, although we've been working on it over the past 2 1/2 years, we haven't really been working on it a LOT.  But within the past half-year, we've been picking up speed, and it's culminated in this, our first release!

Q: Oh, so you DO have a lot done... ?
A:            Well, not really.  If you'll note the version number (v0.0.1 lite), it really is indicitive of the content.  It's not exactly playable.  It compiles, don't get me wrong, and it doesn't crash (if it does, then we haven't seen it).  It's not playable in that it is a non-interactive stress test of the incomplete combat system.  It features three combatants, RedShirt, BlueShirt, and GreenShirt, as they duke it out on a topological green grid.  None of the art is CLOSE to final (I, Dave, he with the least artistic talent, spent an hour making all the damn sprites, and left it at that).  There's no animation of any sort, the guys just blip from tile to tile.

           A lot of the accomplishment with this release is the rendering engine (it's mostly just waiting for data at this point, i.e. the internals work pretty well) and the majority of the combat code is done.  (I need to implement races and clean up lots of stuff, but most of it is there.)

Q: So why release it if it's so unfinished?
A: There are tons of reasons:
  • This is an "Open Source" project, and as such, we want to release early and release often.  If people are interested, they can download our code, run it, complain about any bugs we might already have, send in patches, etc.  There isn't much there yet, but in our opinion, it won't hurt TOO much to release it in it's currently decrepit state.
  • We want to start building excitement about this project. Both in the potential Linux/X11 gaming community as well as in ourselves.  I think that both will stimulate excitement in the other, and we'll get that positive feedback action going.
  • Putting our code out there puts pressure on us in a couple of ways.  It motivates us to work on it more, as people might potentially be waiting for it.  It also motivates us to make our code as clean and robust and commented as possible.  I know I've been tempted to hack stuff in really fast just to get it working, and I have in a couple places, but I've held back and mostly tried to solve the problem the "right" way, instead of putting in a hack.
  • We want to entice other people who might be interested in such a project to flock to us and help us out as early on in the development as possible.  This is pointed more at graphic artists and musicians than programmers, as there tend to be a lot more programmers interested in making games than any other kind of person, but we are always open to any help from anyone, even webmasters, or site-hosters, or anything you could possibly think of.  Caterers...
... and there are probably more reasons that I can't think of right now!

Q: Ok, ok, so now that you've brought my hopes up and dashed them to all hell, otherwise toyed with my emotions, and appropriately disclaimed everything, where is your little Xarble release v0.0.1 lite?
A: Since you asked, here it is:
           xarble-0.0.1-lite.tar.gz (297k)

Mail the author of this page at iffy@uclink4.Berkeley.EDU.