Nearly three years after its doors closed, the collectible card game Duelyst returned in December 2022 as due list 2 (opens in new tab), an updated version of the game created by a team of fans who received a license to create the game from the original developer Counterplay Games. Now Counterplay is extending that capability to everyone: the studio announced today that it is making the Duelyst source code and assets free for anyone to use in any way they choose.
“The truth is that to this day we still look back fondly on what our little game accomplished, and reminisce with our community on Reddit and Discord,” Counterplay Games lead producer Richard Heyne told PC Gamer. “We even follow some Duelyst-inspired games and projects! Through it all, one thought resonated strongly in our minds: people are still talking about Duelyst.
“We are experiencing some major changes in our industry: new technologies and consoles, and even huge consolidations that have taken place in recent years. While only time will tell how these changes will change the landscape, these shifts could potentially affect indie developers. the hardest, so we want to recognize that these developers, whether individual individuals or small teams, are vital to the growth and diversity of our industry.”
Heyne said a relatively easy (but also rare) way for established studios to support aspiring developers is to release the source code of their older games, giving newcomers the chance to experiment and “build their own dream projects and games “. A few early projects based on the Duelyst source are already in the works, and Heyne especially expressed his gratitude to Dream Sloth Games for working to make Duelyst 2 possible.
We quite liked Duelyst when it debuted in 2016 and called it “beautiful tactic card game that’s easy to learn but has a lot of depth” in our 84% rating (opens in new tab). Things ran pretty well for the next four years, but the CCG genre is a tough place, and in January 2020 Counterplay announced that its servers were being taken offline (opens in new tab)– and since Duelyst was an online-only game, that was the end of it. The game’s fan-developed return as Duelyst 2 was great news for players missing the original, but the release of the source code and assets could potentially open the door to even more interesting things in the future.
“There are no conditions attached,” Heyne said. “All source code and game assets are for you to use and for the community to use how they like. There is no endorsement or permission from us, and you can grow, support and monetize it however you want. Enjoy and have fun !”
If you want to poke around to see what’s what, the Duelyst source code and assets are now available from Github (opens in new tab). To keep up to date with the state of Duelyst’s open-source future, and perhaps get involved in a project or two, visit the OpenDuelyst Discord server (opens in new tab).