Somewhere in vast desert of Nevada resides a small team of developers hard at work piecing together the remnants of 1995's classic RTS Command & Conquer for the sole purpose of re-releasing it in remastered form. While the prospect of seeing one of gaming's most influential titles being given a much-needed polish may be exciting enough for most diehard fans, the programming alchemists at Petroglyph are taking things quite a few steps further.
To ensure that the famed franchise's legacy continues on for years to come, the powers that be have decided to release the source code for both Command & Conquer Tiberian Dawn and Command & Conquer Red Alert to allow for some seriously unregulated modding in the upcoming remaster. Naturally, a small pocket of tech-minded gamers are stoked out of their minds.
Being that the Command & Conquer IP is still wholly owned by EA, it's fitting that someone from the publisher's ranks would make the announcement to try and score some much-needed goodwill points for the company. It's a lengthy read, but producer Jim Vessella essentially lays out what going open source means for Command & Conquer's modding community, and I gotta say - as someone who isn't involved in modding or the like - even I can see why this is something to be excited about.
Looking through the thread at user's responses, one can definitely get a feel for the enthusiasm shared by those who have been contributing to the Command & Conquer modding community for years.
Meanwhile, others find it hard to believe that EA - a company not known for giving their communities, well, anything - would be so generous with their assets.
As evidenced from the announcement, the possibilities are pretty much endless. Anyone with the know-how can use the source code to develop new maps, items, gameplay mechanics - you name it. Theoretically, someone could use it as a jumping-off point to create their own remaster - or an entirely different game if they wanted to. Just to give an example of what can be done, Petroglyph took the liberty of crafting a nuclear warhead-equipped tank. What a subtly terrifying and elegant way to show off the amount of power that's being handed down to the community.
If there's one thing to be learned from this, it's that the best way to breathe new life into a 25 year old game is by allowing hackers, tinkerers, and modders open access to its source code to do with it whatever they please.
Command & Conquer Remastered invades PC on June 5th and will be available for Steam and EA Origin.