Free? Yes (Full Version)
Open Source? No
Online Play? Yes
Systems: Linux, Windows
(For Ubuntu and other Linux Distributions):
First download the .run package (with the SEP mod) from here. Download it to your desktop and open up a terminal.
$ cd ~/Desktop
$ chmod a+x Savage_with_sep3t.run
$ sh Savage_with_sep3t.run
To run, create a launcher icon that points to the ~/Savage/Savage. On the first run, it may try to update. The updater will probably not work, and you will have to go to http://www.notforidiots.com/SFE/ and download the patch, (once downloaded extract all files to ~/Savage/Savage).
Savage: The Battle for Newerth, created and released by S2Games in the Summer of 2003, is a unique FPS/RTS online game. It combines first and third person combat with RTS elements such as structures, AI workers, and a team commander. The game is based in a post-apocalyptic world where humans have fallen from dominance, competing with intelligent beasts for survival.
On a good online server up to 64 players can easily play without any lag. The games are usually long if the commanders and players are equal– many times this is the case and I have found myself playing for hours.
When you first spawn you are given a certain amount of money with which you can buy items, weapons, or character upgrades. The characters usually get better with price, some having special abilities that others do not. The beast race specializes in magic attacks and brute strength; the humans specialize in technology. Your character levels up with your number of kills, and with each level comes rewards such as improved armor and weapons.
One of the very cool things about Savage: The Battle for Newerth are the siege weapons. Characters can buy and use these siege weapons (usually for a large price) to destroy enemy buildings and smash other characters. The humans have ballistas (large, mobile bows) and catapults. The beasts have only a single siege weapon, a (very) large beast that wields a tree and has 4000+ health (8 to 4 times as much health as the other characters).
They may not seem it at first, but commanders are a _very_ important part of the game. They are picked during game setup mode, elected by the team. They control where structures are built and can command most of the attacks, depending on the loyalty of the team. If a commander is bad, he can can be kicked from command by team vote.
The graphics in Savage: The Battle for Newerth can be beautiful depending on how you have it set (as well as how you have OpenGL set up). On my computer, which sports a nVidia GeForce 5500 FX (not very good) the medium setting can easily be run.
There is a large fan base for Savage: The Battle for Newerth, and it is not hard to find a populated server or help or just people to share your enthusiasm for the game.
Overall, Savage: The Battle for Newerth is probably one of the best free games that supports Linux. I give it a 9 out of 10, based on gameplay, graphics, and the community. If you liked it as well, you will be happy to know that there is a sequel: Savage 2: A Tortured Soul. I will be reviewing it sometime later, until then
The (a) Linux Gamer