The two classic first person shooters released in the mid nineties by id Software were two revolutionary games which managed to build up on the success of the FPS classic of them all, Doom, to the delight of the public.
The same public got further reasons to be delighted, since in 1999 the source code of Hexen was released by the developers under a very restrictive license, granting rights to non-commercial use. However, ten more years were needed for the two games to receive new freedom across the internet, being released under the GNU Public License.
This means that now coders and hardcore fans are allowed to download the code for free, modify and distribute it as they please and even port it to other platforms such as Linux – a really great news for the Doom development community which had, until now, to rewrite codes from scratch in order to insert Heretic or Hexen elements in-game.
However, this is not an effortless achievement: the Doomworld community started an online petition, open letters, snail mail campaigns, international action item on the GNU website – all with the help of renowned game developer John Romero. But, since the lengthy campaign finally reached its goal, it’s all good now and we can rest assured that the two classics will be kept alive and constantly improved. And if you’re one of those guys who knows what to do with the source code, head over to the SourceForge website and start downloading!