Originally known as Die Siedler 2.5, now Return to the Roots, has a new short’n’sweet domain: rttr.info. This is a good road for the previously closed source German only project, now open source, to become friendly for the international audience 🙂
A question for all the readers: should RttR have monthly multiplayer activity in a single day? The idea in this is that you’d know for sure that one date when you can certainly find other players to play with, as this may be hard at times. Tell me what you think!
One of the things that I think is surprisingly missing is the international community for the classic Settlers games, meaning the first two games in the series. These were very different from the games that followed, The Settlers III abandoning the core road feature and everything going pretty much in the way I didn’t want things to go based on the first two games (and in my case especially the second game).
What I think is causing this is the small gap in the early years of 2000 that there was only Widelands. There was no S2 modding community, there was no open source project like Return to the Roots that would have kept things alive for it in the international scene. Transport Tycoon Deluxe, released around the same time, did have it’s community following since the late 90’s thanks to TTDPatch constantly providing new features and improvements to the game, later OpenTTD taking over and now we have a fully open source clone of TTD. And I think the same should happen with The Settlers II.
So here I am, finally adding a community support on this site. It has actually been there for a few days now, but I first wanted to get familiar with how it works and if it brings the useful features. It didn’t bring everything first, so I fixed things a bit, adding support for forum uploads for an example. As a design change was also forced I ended up again sorting the pages into new locations and now the menu should be quite nice and easy to follow.
I also included Return to the Roots content on this site. RttR is a bit interesting beast, technically it is very nice, but my personal feelings about their site are not strongly on the positive side. It looks too old school, it is based on custom page engine and it still prioritizes German language over English on many parts of the site. There have been some improvements but things such as appearance in Google aren’t things that are going to get fixed anytime soon (you can see the link, but no title, description etc.). This site instead appears on Google in it’s full glory and is ranked quite well.
Someone has been very productive with LEGOs and made a few very nice buildings based on original Settlers 2 graphics!
Visit a thread at Classic-Castle for more information!
Following the IRC channel pays off. Yesterday Parasit posted this image:
I made it my afternoon project to draw a new version of that building. So here you have it:
I don’t know when this building becomes playable, but Spike has been interested on using it in RttR.
Return to the Roots has an active IRC channel. It is easy to join this channel using Freenode Web IRC: just give a short nickname (no spaces!), type #siedler2.5 as the channel and you’re ready to connect!
Here is a link for those of you who already have an IRC client or use Mibbit: #siedler2.5 @ irc.freenode.net
Note that most speak German on the channel, but English is not forbidden! You can ask questions on both original The Settlers II as well as Return to the Roots. Note that RttR supports multiplayer so you can also ask people for a game!
After some considering I have now updated the site to run under a WordPress. This means others (that means you!) are able to join in and bring more information, and you can leave comments and questions directly to the site. Making an account is as simple as logging in with your Facebook account!
To remind on what used to be on the front page:
Buying the game
GOG.com has the game available downloadable with an easy to use installer. The price is small (9.99 USD) and the game installs fine on Windows 7, Vista & XP.
Those who don’t want to pay can find various demos and instructions how to get the game to work with DOSbox on the download page.
The Settlers II has a lot of fan activity for it’s age. There are two separate fan projects with different kind of approach. The Settlers II.5 – Return To The Roots is a newer project that is strong in multiplayer. It also fixes some oddities of the original game, such as prevents destroying your military building before it is captured. Widelands is another project that is merely hugely inspired by The Settlers II. The game mechanics are the same, but it is very much a new game. RttR instead uses the same familiar graphics and interface and thus you must have the original game.