The XL Engine is an engine that runs the “XL Games”, which are enhanced remakes/ports* of the classic games. Essentially they are remakes in the spirit of a port, or to put it another way, they emulate the original games and then provide optional enhanced features on top in order to improve playability and visuals. All these games will be able to use the “Pure Renderer”, which is a software renderer that can support the original 8 bit rendering and resolutions. Basically this means that you can play the games as they original looked and played or play in higher resolutions and color depths with a variety of enhancements. You choose how close to the original you want the games to be.

So why would you want to play these classic games using the XL Engine instead of the originals?

A variety of reasons:

  • Modern OS support without worrying about tweaking for performance or DosBox limitations.
  • Cross platform support coming soon.
  • Potentially higher framerates and smoother gameplay.
  • Optional modern control schemes such as mouselook.
  • Increased moddability as the project matures.
  • Improved modding tools being developed.
  • Optimized software rendering coming soon, allowing people with low-end video cards to play these games in higher resolutions and color depth too.
  • In-game console for modifying settings.
  • Scripting.
  • Game specific optional features to enhance the gameplay, such as adding cut or gameplay enhancing features back to DaggerXL. These will include things like being able to sail your ship in the Bay, wars, missing factions, roads and rivers and so on.
  • Improved or added multiplayer support later in development.
  • And more being added all the time.
  • Optional features offering an enhanced visual experience, such as:
    • High color depth.
    • Arbitrary resolutions.
    • High quality texture filtering (which can be disabled).
    • Bloom/Glow
    • Dynamic per-pixel lighting
    • Alpha Blending for smoother cutout edges.
    • High resolution / true color texture support.
    • 3D model support, which can replace sprites/flats (coming soon).
    • 3D Voxel support, which can replace sprites/flats (coming soon).
    • Much more coming later.
The XL Engine is and will remain free, donations are purely optional but greatly appreciated.