Web site:
Category: Games
Sub-Category: Strategy
Platform: Cross-platform
License: GNU GPL
Interface: GUI
Wikipedia: Freecol
First release: January 2, 2003

Freecol – a turn-based strategic computer game based on Colonization. It is licensed under the GPL and belongs to the group of free software.

Thanks to Java technology, the game is available on various platforms, including: Unix (X Window System and OS X), as well as Microsoft Windows.

In the FreeCol game, the player takes command of a group of embarked settlers from one of eight European countries (England, France, Spain, the Netherlands, Portugal, Sweden, Denmark or Russia), and is then sent around the world in search of a new land. The aim of the game is to create a network of colonies and then defend them against the forces of the mother country, after signing a declaration of independence. The game lasts from 1492, i.e. from the expedition of Christopher Columbus, to the time of the wars for the independence of the colonies.

The FreeCol team aims to create an Open Source version of Colonization (released under the GPL). However, FreeCol differs from the original game in two regards: it supports multiplayer games and uses an isometric map. At some point in the future, we might also add support for rectangular tiles similar to those used in the original game.

FreeCol 1.0 will implement all features and rules of the original game that we are aware of. Although we have not reached that goal yet, the game has been playable for several years now.

At the same time, we are adding features and optional rules not found in the original game. In particular, units, buildings, terrain types, goods and other game objects are far more configurable than they were in the original game. In fact, the game already includes two slightly different rule sets.

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