Building from source

A wireframe view

If you’re interested in helping out with the code, or just want to try the latest version, you should build from source. Since Worldforge is made up of a lot of different components it’s often cumbersome and confusing for new developers to get everything built in order. For that reason we provide a build tool we call Hammer which we strongly recommend that you use. It will download and build all necessary components. This page provides guidelines and help with building the whole of Worldforge from source.

Get access to a Linux system.

The core WorldForge system runs on Linux, MacOSX and Windows, and may well run on other unix like systems, but getting involved in development is easiest if you are working on Linux, as that is the platform of choice of most of our developers. This is not to say you must develop on Linux. We have developers who primarily use other systems, but life is much easier if every developer at least has access to a Linux system to check stuff on. Most of the WorldForge C++ code uses standard GNU tools like autoconf and automake to manage the build, so it helps to be familiar with these. Any up to date Linux distro should be fine. The best thing to do is get Linux installed on a machine you own, so you have admin rights, and can work around any minor issues. It does not need to be your main desktop or laptop machine, and in many ways your Linux system will not even need to have a monitor attached, as you can do almost everything by logging in remotely.

Fetch code and build.

The Worldforge project contains a large number of libraries and clients, which can be confusing for a newcomer. To alleviate this we provide a script which will automatically fetch and build all the needed libraries used by Worldforge, as well as the Cyphesis server and the Ember and Sear clients. This method is very much preferred for any new developer, as it oftentimes can be time consuming to get all of the different libraries built in the correct order. Instructions on how to use Hammer can be found here. If you are impatient, here are the basic steps needed for building and running both the Cyphesis server and the Ember client locally

git clone git://
cd hammer
./ install-deps all
./ checkout all
./ build all

However, if you want to fetch and compile everything yourself we provide the instructions for this below.

Get the code

We host all of our code on Github

Build and install the libraries.

Developers and users are encouraged to install WorldForge libraries from the binary packages available from our download pages, or as part of many Linux distributions. As a developer, you should find this the best and easiest way to keep up to date with the libraries, and help us test the packages.

However, building all the libraries from git source will provide an invaluable opportunity to learn how the WorldForge system is put together. The libraries should be built in the following order, but feel free to change this order if you want to find out how the dependencies work.

The components section has details of what these libraries do, and you should make yourself familiar with their roles.

Build the Ember client

The Ember client is the main client used both for playing the game as well as authoring the world. The main dependencies that you might need to install yourself are Ogre3D and CEGUI.

Build and install a WorldForge server.

The Cyphesis server is the main game play server. Instructions for building from source are available in the README file in the source directory, and on its page on the website. It is easiest to build and run on Linux, but has also been tested on MacOSX and on Windows using MingW. Once you have it installed and running, try connecting to it using Ember.