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If you want to distribute your game commercially, this page attempts to explain the various issues with licensing you may face. It also covers AGS's licence agreement.
The Adventure Game Studio Licence
AGS is an adventure game creation system. As such, it is provided to you in good faith by the author. Chris Jones cannot be held responsible for the contents of any works created with AGS, including but not limited to any which infringe on copyright, are libellous or contain offensive material. Please use AGS responsibly.
If you come across an AGS-made game which infringes on any laws relevant to you, please contact the author of the game. Chris Jones does not have any control over the content of games created with AGS and cannot help you.
THE SOFTWARE ("ADVENTURE GAME STUDIO ENGINE AND TOOLS") IS PROVIDED WITH ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY, NOT EVEN THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. USE THIS SOFTWARE AT YOUR OWN RISK. CHRIS JONES IS NOT RESPONSIBLE IF YOUR COMPUTER STARTS BURPING, CATCHES FIRE, GETS A SENSE OF HUMOUR OR ANYTHING ELSE WHICH HAPPENS DUE TO THE USE OF THIS SOFTWARE.
Commercial sale of games
If you wish to make money from anything you create with AGS, which covers both shareware and commercial releases, there are some factors you need to consider.
First of all, the default speech font in AGS is ripped fromSpace Quest IV: Roger Wilco and the Time Rippers. If you are going to distribute your game commercially, you should change this because it may make Sierra unhappy. The default normal font is however drawn by me and freeware.
AGS itself, as in the compiled version of the code written by me (Chris) is freeware and therefore may be distributed commercially without penalty. However, AGS uses some third-party components which have different licence agreements which you will have to abide by in order to commercially release your game.
In particular the components, with relevant licence agreements, are:
- Allegro (main graphics and sound sub-systems) - Allegro is gift-ware. It was created by a number of people working in cooperation, and is given to you freely as a gift. You may use, modify, redistribute, and generally hack it about in any way you like, and you do not have to give us anything in return. However, if you like this product you are encouraged to thank us by making a return gift to the Allegro community. See the Allegro website for more information.
- aastr (anti-aliasing library) - also under the terms of the Allegro licence, see above.
- Hq2x/Hq3x (graphic filters) - use the GNU Lesser General Public Licence, Version 2.1, February 1999.
AllegroMP3 (MP3 player)- uses the GNU Lesser General Public Licence, Version 2.1, February 1999.
HOWEVER, the use of MP3 in commercial products requires you to get a licence from Fraunhofer and Thomson Multimedia, who own the MP3 decoding patent. At time of writing, this is a flat fee of $2500 per game, but only if more than 5000 copies are sold. For up-to-date information, check the MP3 licensing website.
The easiest solution is to get the alternative AGS Engine build without the MP3 decoder from the Download page, and use OGG for your music and sound.
- AllegroOGG (OGG music player) - The OGG licence. Due credit should also be given to Javier Gonzalez, who wrote the AllegroOGG interface that AGS uses.
- AllegroFont (TTF renderer)- The FreeType Project Licence, 2000-Feb-08. Due credit should also be given to Javier Gonzalez, who wrote the AllegroFont interface that AGS uses.
- APEG (OGG Theora video player) - The OGG licence. Due credit should also be given to Chris Robinson, who wrote the APEG interface that AGS uses to play Theora video.
- DUMB (MOD/XM/S3M/IT player) - Permission is granted to anyone to use this software for any purpose, including commercial applications, and to alter it and redistribute it freely, subject to the following restrictions (For more detail see the licence_dumb.txt in the AGS distribution).
libcda (CD-Audio player)- You may use, modify, redistribute, and generally hack it about in any way you like, but if you do you should contribute something in exchange. This could be a complimentary copy of a game, an addition or improvement to libcda, a bug report, some money (as long as you can track down and send it to all contributors), or just a copy of your AUTOEXEC.BAT or .bashrc if you don't have anything better.
If you redistribute libcda or make a game using it, it would be nice if you mentioned the contributors somewhere in the credits.
You should mention in your documentation that the above libraries were used (if the relevant part is used by your game) if no further licence terms apply. It would also be nice to include any relevant parts from the Credits section in the AGS Manual in your documentation.
MOST IMPORTANTLY, if you decide to release a commercial game then it isyour responsibility to verify that the licences specified above are correct, and to meet any conditions contained therein.
The above licence information is believed to be correct at time of writing. If there are any inaccuracies, please do not hesitate to contact me in order to get them corrected.