Game libraries

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Freely licensed libraries for use in open source games.


  • Alure - LGPL OpenAL common task utility library
  • Audiere - LGPL high-level audio API
  • Gorilla Audio C, MIT licens (some LGPL includes)
  • Kowalski - "data driven, portable, high level API for real time audio, released under a permissive open source licence" (forum thread)
  • OALWrapper OpenAL C++ Wrapper which has been used in successful proprietary indie games.

Collision detection

  • PMASK - Public domain pixel-perfect collision detection library, C
  • PoxelColl - GPL3 pixel-perfect collision detection library with support for rotation and scaling, Scala/C++


  • Bullet - ZLIB 3D Collision Detection and Rigid Body Dynamics Library
  • Flatland - BSD 2D physics engine
  • Newton Game Dynamics (free since February 2011)
  • ODE - BSD 3D rigid body dynamics engine
  • Tokamak - BSD 3D real-time physics engine


  • ENet - ZLIB thin network layer on top of UDP
  • Grapple - LGPL network layer, simple but fully featured
  • HawkNL - LGPL low level network engine
  • OpenTNL - GPLed Network engine from the Torque engine
  • RakNet - cross platform C++ networking engine, open source since 2014
  • RaptorNL - Successor to the HawkNL networking library

Procedural content creation

  • FxGen - Procedural texture generation tool & library
  • ngPlant - Procedural plant generation tool & library
  • OpenTree - Procedural plant generation library
  • Munty engine - GPL neural networks procedural animation library
  • Ivy Generator - GPL procedural ivy generation


  • Cal3D is a skeletal based 3D character animation library (LGPL)
  • COLLADA - 3D Model exchange format
  • HawkVoice - LGPL multiplayer voice over network API
  • FEAR - GPL artificial intelligence for games
  • LifeAI - AI, decision making
  • OpenSteer - MIT Steering Behaviors for Autonomous Characters
  • LWJGL - Lightweight Java Game Library

Non-free libraries

Non-free dependencies have to be avoided.[1] Some of them include:

  • BASS (audio)
  • FMOD (audio)
  • Havok (physics)
  • IrrKlang (audio)
  • PhysX (physics)
  • Zoidcom (network)


  1. "Can I write free software that uses non-free libraries?"