The Humble Homebrew Collection

On May 22, 2011, in Development, PS3, by kakaroto

Finally, after almost 2 months of hard work, I’m proud and happy to announce the release of the Homebrew game I’ve been working on : SGT Puzzles. It’s a collection of portable puzzle games for Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, PocketPC, Android, etc.. and I’ve ported it to the PS3 too!

The release of this homebrew game comes with the  release of The Humble Homebrew Collection which is inspired by the Humble Indie Bundle Initiative (but not endorsed by it). The difference here is that you don’t have to pay anything in order to enjoy the games, they are free to download by anyone, but you are also able to donate any amount to the developer of the puzzle games (Simon Tatham) as well as the PS3 port developer (me!) and the EFF. You decide who to send the money to just like with the Humble Bundle. I’ve also linked to the game’s Windows, Mac and Android ports if you want them (they are already available in most Linux distributions).

The addition here and probably the most important part is a petition where yo get to sign and send a message to Sony asking for a legitimate way of having homebrew games on the PS3. Every signature will send an email to SCEE, SCEA, SCE Australia, SCE New Zealand and Kazuo Hirai, the CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment.  This is done in the hopes that Sony will finally see the light, learn from the mistakes they’ve been doing these past few years, and finally give us a legitimate and officially supported way of developing homebrew applications for our PS3 Systems.

Sony would be stupid not to answer to that, considering that Apple complied, Microsoft complied and Google complied, and they are all generating huge revenues thanks to homebrewers, with zero investment from their part. I know that the Sony execs only understand when you talk about money, so I hope this is a good enough incentive for them. Clearly, they do not care about their customers, so I don’t think they’ll change anything only to do what is right.

The SGT Puzzles game includes 33 puzzles, which are excellent for the most part. My favorite is and always will be Pattern, as I’ve spent countless hours playing it. I’ve recently also discovered Rectangles and Net which are also very good (in higher difficulties). I suggest you give those puzzles a try. Above all, I hope everyone can enjoy these games.

This all started about 2 months ago when I found a copy of Pattern on my PC and started playing it again. I tweeted about it and asked if someone wanted to port it to the PS3. Clement Bouvet (@TeToNN) quickly made a proof of concept using cairo. That got me excited and I decided to help him. We ended up writing a PS3 application over Simon Tatham’s Portable Puzzle Collection which, I must say, is very well written and made porting it to the PS3 very easy. It took maybe a day or two and the first game was playable on the PS3. At that point, I discovered the Cairo Drawing API which I loved and and I decided to invest myself entirely in this. It took 3 more weeks of hard work to get the whole system working (choose your puzzle game, change difficulty (Select) and writing the whole menu system for the game). I’ve received various help, Surenix made the designs for the menu graphics and buttons, and BeGamer helped design the HHC website.

The game still lacks a few things, and I will continue to work on it and improve it so everyone can enjoy a quality homebrew game, that, I hope, will make the anti-homebrew purists jealous.

The funny thing is that since day one, the source code for this game was available on my github account, but no one noticed it. Only a few people who accidently ended up on my github page found it, but no news website author found it or reported on it. I’m glad, because it allowed me to make this happen the way I wanted it to and launch this HHC initiative when it became ready. I’d like to ask the various websites out there not to link directly to the games (even if you are allowed to) and instead link to humblehomebrew.com so people can sign the petition while downloading.

Most of the code is licensed under the MIT license. Parts of the code (the cairo menu system) is licensed under the LGPL license and I plan on extracting that into its own library for other developers to use in their applications.

The website took about 3 weeks to code. I learned two valuable lessons.. first, HTML coding is crap… secondly, it’s much more complicated than it looks. I hope people will appreciate this effort and I hope the Humble Homebrew Collection will make a difference.

In the future, I hope to enhance it by adding new homebrew games whenever I find something of quality, and keep the website and this whole initiative going for a long time, for as long as necessary.

 

So.. go ahead, download the games, sign the petition, maybe donate if you’re feeling generous, and most importantly, have fun!

Thank you!

 

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35 Responses to The Humble Homebrew Collection

  1. Just wanted to thank you for the excellent games and all your hard work. I can’t wait to see how you improve on this!!! Thanks again for everything you do for the ps3 scene!!!!

  2. xPreatorianx says:

    KaKaRoTo please don’t take this the wrong way as I greatly appreciate all the hard work that went into this and am grateful to you and everyone else involved but I believe that this “initiative” is in vain. People have always petitioned, emailed, or requested a legal way to do homebrew on all of the consoles that don’t require hacking it and the companies never listen. They know exactly how much money they can make but their too busy worrying about what could happen if they gave us an SDK that even remotely has code from them. Companies that are in the console business will always treat us as potential criminals, or potential security risks for their products and will never release a sanctioned way to do homebrew.

    The closest company to do it is Microsoft. But you have to be an official “indy dev” and pay them either a yearly or monthly fee as well as sign up to their services. Now while it is a pretty decent way of doing things with XBLIG there are a lot of restrictions. but it’s the closest a company has ever gotten to real “homebrew”.

    But so far history has shown that even though people hate Microsoft with a passion, they are more forgiving than Sony has ever been. Likewise Microsoft over the last 2-5 years has finally realized that people will hack anything they produce, so they might as well either leave them alone to do it, or allow them some type of legal way of doing things.

    Sony I fear will never do this. They are a Japanese company and they hate letting anyone get through their pride. So they will never do it.

    But I’ll still enjoy playing the games. I will also sign the petition but I fear it will be in vain. But I hope to god I’m completely wrong. Maybe this will change sony’s mind but it may only happen at a cost. Which would mean they tell every single developer in the scene that they must not release anything else unless it’s on their sanctioned networks. Which in all honesty isn’t worth a 100% sanctioned alternative in my opinion.

    Also thanks to you KaKaRoTo and the other developers for releasing these, and creating the wonderful site as well. It’s not what we all expected and I guarantee you will hear whining throughout the scene as people complain this isn’t 3.60 or 3.61 CFW. But to be quite honest, I’m grateful for any release in this scene. So I wanted to say that before all the whiners about CFW start yapping off all over the scene.

    • kakaroto says:

      Thanks for the comment. I don’t know if it will make sony change their policies, but I do hope it does. After all, without hope, we have nothing! :)
      As it is, it probably won’t do much, but if it gets enough media attention and we can gather a huge enough amount of signatures, then maybe it will open the eyes of those sony suits.
      After all, when the iPhone was first jailbroken, there was no SDK and Apple saw the huge amount of people who requested for homebrew and they eventually released their SDK and App Store, and look how successful that was for them.
      I don’t know the details of the XBLIG, but at least Microsoft did offer some way to do this, it may not be the free and open system that everyone hopes for, but it’s still something. I’m ready for a compromise, I just want Sony to hear us, we have a voice, and we need to make it heard.

      Yes, people will whine, but I’ve always said it’s not a hack, if they can’t read it then it’s their own fault.

      • xPreatorianx says:

        Well sad to say man, but people are already bitching at least on PSX-scene. It’s getting ridiculous if you ask me. The last few homebrew only threads that have been in the news were filled with “this is worthless because it’s not 3.60.” And people wonder why devs are hardly releasing things anymore. It’s because of the self entitlement BS that most people have in this scene.

        But I won’t drag this down. Again thanks a lot for this release and I do hope it at least perks a Sony suit’s eyebrow if nothing else.

        • kakaroto says:

          yeah, i’ve seen, it sucks, and as someone said “demoralization” is a real thing. Anyways, i’ll just ignore them for now, I do what i find fun.
          But those who actually go through the trouble to go bitch and complain when they themselves haven’t done anything, those ungrateful leechers are the most annoying of all.
          Kind of like some of the recent comments I’ve seen in this blog post.. :(

  3. maweki says:

    Hey there,

    I love those games and I always play them on my Desktop and Laptop for relaxation. I have a Nokia E7 and I’d love to play them there. Is there an Initiative to port them to Symbian^3 (I don’t know whether it is hard to port them to java)?

    Greetings

  4. Bob Bobson says:

    “I’m proud and happy to announce the release of the Homebrew game I’ve been working on : SGT Puzzles”

    Ok this sounds interesting…

    “The SGT Puzzles game includes 33 puzzles, which are excellent for the most part”

    Wow! Big yourself up why don’t you. Calling your own work excellent?

    “but no news website author found it or reported on it”

    Are you serious? A few silly little games and you want it reported as news? Do you want the BBC to do an interview with you?

    Hardly a ‘humble’ indie developer are you.

    • xPreatorianx says:

      You do realize he wasn’t talking about himself when he was referring to the games. HE DIDN’T MAKE THE ORIGINAL GAMES. He ported them and may have added a few more. Chill the fuck out, and if you don’t have any constructive criticism, or anything positive to add quit commenting.

    • kakaroto says:

      1 – I’m calling the work of Simon Tatham excellent, I was commenting on HIS puzzle games.
      2 – who says BBC? News sites refer to psgroove.com, ps3hax.net, ps3-hacks.com, psx-scene.com, ps3news.com, etc.. those kind of news sites which leech on any bit of news they can get and post anything about everything.
      3 – you are being “silly” by saying these are silly little games, unless you’ve played them and spent hours on each one, then you can’t really judge them, but then again, you probably can’t do that because it does require a brain if you want to solve the puzzles.
      4 – if you have no constructive criticism, then why even bother come bitching when you haven’t done anything yourself to contribute to the ps3 scene?

    • Porting something isn’t as easy as just clicking your finger and its done, it takes hard work and time, it takes dedication and patience, KaKaRoTo did not create the original games, nor does he claim to do so, he ported them to the PS3, for our enjoyment.

      To end it, Bob, let us see what you have contributed, to the scene, let us see your accomplishments.

    • Pobson says:

      Why don’t you STFU? What’s the point in coming on to a forum just to slag off the developer? Loads of people have already downloaded the PS3 port and must admit some of the games are sooo addictive, NET for one. Great work from all the devs involved.

      If you’re not got anything constrictive why not just navigate to a pr0n site and get rid of all that energy another way.

  5. sjrathe says:

    Are you need to HTML? You’ve written a tables based page. That’s been deprecated for about a decade.

    Code aside, it’s an ugly website. That’s with the white drop shadow?

    It took you three weeks?!

    • xPreatorianx says:

      You do realize that not everyone in the world is a master at HTML like you are? (btw that compliment was actually sarcasm.)

      People have strengths and weaknesses. Some people can be extremely good at C++, C while suck ass at HTML. Does that mean you need to take time out of your day to criticize them for no reason? No it doesn’t.

    • kakaroto says:

      this was the first time in my life that I looked at html, so excuse me if I don’t know what has been “deprecated” for a decade.. I had to google “html tr” and “html td” to understand wtf those were.
      Ugly website? that’s your opinion, I like it, it’s simple and it gets the message across and that’s what’s important.. but I bet that if it doesn’t have flash and background music, it’s “ugly” for you, right ?
      and yes it took 3 weeks, and read the reason why : it’s not as simple as it looks…
      first of all, I never said I spent 12 hours a day on that during those 3 weeks.. you do realize this is all done on free time, right? also most of that time was not spent in the html, it was spent on the backend, the donation and paypal processing system, the database, the petition system, etc.., I had to learn not only html, but also php and javascript… and it had to go through proper ‘hack attempt’ in order to sanitize every single thing and to make sure that it’s as secure as possible. It’s not just about clicking a few mouse buttons on dreamweaver or whatever (I used a text editor all the way).
      If you couldn’t think of all this, then you probably shouldn’t have commented… “you dumbass”.

      • Sébastien D says:

        For a first web development experience, you deserve some kudos I think 😉

        Too few people actually consider security at first. As for the technologies, just as a pointer, next time search for cooler keywords such as: HTML5 and CSS3, you’ll find great resources to tell you about all those new and exciting things available for the web — today!

        Cheers

        • kakaroto says:

          Thank you:)
          I looked at html5 quickly, but decided to make it work for most browsers, not everyone is using the latest version of Chrome, some are using outdated IE even.. so I went with the basic stuff.. Also @BeGamer wrote the initial draft of the website using dreamweaver and I just improved upon it.

      • sjrathe says:

        “but I bet that if it doesn’t have flash and background music, it’s “ugly” for you, right ?”

        No – the exact opposite.

        I like nice clean, minimalistic websites. Take a look at github.com, google.com, gnome.org, these are well designed websites.

        Yours has a horrible dark image background, a garish, 90s style image title in contrasting colours, and a weird puzzle piece logo that looks like it was embossed in Paint Shop Pro. And then a white shadow – for no reason.

        Come on, everyone knows it, it looks look a cheap cheap website. Like a 10 year old did it.

        And finally the quality of the code is poor. Non-semantic CSS, use of tables for markup. You must be a pretty shit coder if you can’t even look up the documentation for these elements and see how they’re supposed to be used. It’s no different to C – you look up the documentation and and then use them correctly.

        • kakaroto says:

          Great.. I’ll ignore your immaturity for a second and I’ll answer with two things :
          1 – where were you when I asked on twitter for a web designer ?
          2 – since you’re so great, rewrite the website in the next couple of days, make it fully-featured, and I’ll gladly replace the current one with your design instead. Just make sure it runs correctly on Firefox (3.x and 4.0), IE, Opera and Safari, and doesn’t use Flash or HTML5.

          I’m quite tired of all these arrogant ungrateful leechers who don’t do a single thing with their lives for others and now’s the time to say : Patches are welcome.
          Put your heart where your mouth is, and do good by your word and do something constructive instead of only criticizing others… then you’ll prove that you are above 10 years old.

          Thank you,
          KaKaRoTo

        • Pobson says:

          sjrathe what’s your problem? Kakaroto is a good PS3 dev from what I’ve seen, and all you can do is come on here slagging off his website?!

          So he’s supposed to spend all his time with his head buried in CSS and AJAX books rather that writing great PS3 homebrew apps?

          You, Sir, are an idiot.

  6. Sébastien D says:

    Hello KaKaRoToKS,

    Again, this is a great initiative of yours!
    A huge thanks for this port and the message it is conveying. I sincerely hope that Sony will someday understand that it is in their best interest to give in to the homebrew community and that in the end, they’ll be glad they did.

    Thanks again!

    Some techie from Belgium 😉

  7. jools says:

    Hello KaKaRoTo i been meaning get hold off you in personal as i am 100% intrested in your skills you have with ps3 and i need to pay for some services i think you can help.I do have a paypal account and im willing to pay for your services and help for reasons i dont want to state what i need help with so if you can email me on joolshelder1@hotmail.co.uk maybe leave a number i can ring you on or message me letting me no if your willing to help.

    thanks alot bro hope hear from you (n thnks for the w@w patch i love it)

  8. jools says:

    yo KaKaRoTo i just read your comment above forget that lil ponce my mum is a web designer made plenty sites for big buisneses ( EXAMPLE partswarehouse check it out it cracking site) ill get my mum do the web design for you and in return i will be truly gratefull if you could help me with somthing i really want for my own personal use kk bro message me on joolshelder1@hotmail.co.uk with detail on what need doing and any files that may need with it and ill get her crack on with it straight away (im at my mum for the week so let me no what need doing this week and it be finished by the end of week depending on amount need doing)
    kk bro hope here from you

  9. F.B. says:

    I wish you good luck with this KaKaRoTo. I don’t think Sony will listen, even if it reaches thousands of signatures (and if they do, they will probably come out with a very dumbed down SDK): they gave us OtherOS back then, and at the first sign of trouble they shut it down… but as there is absolutely nothing to lose it’s surely worth a try!

    Also, i hope one day i’ll be able to play this collection: i picked up a semi-broken (dead drive) PS3 on a flea market for development (i’ve done some hb coding on Dingoo and N64, and want to try something a little more powerful) and i found out the last thing the owner did with the console was upgrading it to 6.30… gah.

  10. Robert says:

    hey i accidentally full bricked my ps3 during the 3.55 downgrade, and i was wondering if i could somehow fix it?

  11. melior says:

    kakaroto,

    Not sure if you’re still checking these comments, but could you (or someone knowledgeable) possibly put up a brief summary/crash course of what a potential homebrew developer would need to build this from source and get it on their PS3? Not just for me, I mean, I’m already most of the way there – I’ve got PSL1GHT set up and samples successfully built and my 60GB launch (fat) PS3 is sitting on 3.55 OFW. But the fastest way to turn off potential developers is expecting them sift through a pile of probably-outdated blog posts to figure out how to build and run something. Not that I’m blaming you, of course, I know it’s more fun to work on new projects than bring people up to speed, and you probably have people pulling you every which way right now.

    As for me, it’s not clear to me where to go from here. I *think* I need PS3MFW Builder v0.2, which I’ve got. But I read something about OtherOS++ not being able to run on my launch PS3. Are the tasks I need to run homebrew safe to execute on my version? Which tasks are they? Or is PSFreedom the preferred method?

    Anyway, in short I think a crash course to go from OFW <=3.55 to running homebrew would be a great addition to the humblehomebrew site.

    • kakaroto says:

      Hi melior,
      Thanks, it is indeed a great suggestion and it’s definitely needed. I’ll try to write up something and post it on my blog or somewhere else… then someone needs to find how/where to add it to the website.
      If you’re interested in looking at the website and improve it, the code is all available at http://git-hacks.com/humblehomebrew/www
      Anyways, you are on 3.55, so it’s jailbreakable, you need PS3MFW Builder v0.2 (v0.1 works fine too), and its tasks as well as the ps3 keys in their respective directories (tasks in ps3mfw/tasks and keys in ~/.ps3). Then run ps3mfw and give it the 3.55 OFW and then build your MFW, the tasks you’ll need enabled are the one for patch nas_plugin and category_game.xml, I think they were called “patch the package installer” and “add icons to the XMB”. Once you create the new .PUP file with those options (and any other that you’d like), install it normally through USB, and you’ll be able to install packages and run them.
      If you need more info, let me know, it will also help to know what I should explain in my crash course, since I tend to forget/skip things when I’m used to the process.
      Yes, I am very busy though and can barely find time to breath, so I’m not sure when I’ll be able to do it, I’ll try to do it ASAP though.. but If you’d like to help gather the information or start the doc, let me know!
      You can contact me by mail at AT :)
      By the way, I’m curious, what are you planning to develop? a homebrew game/app? Port an existing game/app or something new ? Let me know! :)

      p.s: I don’t really know much about OtherOS++, all I can do is point you here : http://wiki.gitbrew.org/index.php/PS3:OtherOS++ but OtherOS is not necessary for running/developing homebrew apps.

      Thanks,
      KaKaRoTo

  12. sam says:

    hi, kakaroto plz dont make a 3.61,3.65 jailbreak cause all little kids get it and think they right good infront of they little freinds keep it how it is u need 2 ps3’s dats what i do and it anoys me wen 11 year old get it

    thanks plz get bak sam,

  13. Ezequiel says:

    Speak guys, I did a downgrade in my ps3 slim 3.61 for only 3:55 gone bad, turned brick, is how to reverse it?

  14. […] us a small bit about your new venture, The Humble Homebrew Collection, and what you wish to accomplish with […]