QUOTE(Foetopsy @ Apr 16 2009, 09:57 AM)
i thought you would just need the source code..so i was led to believe...im looking for this engine source now lol
You were right, you need the source code, but the term "source code" is vague and can be misleading. See, all computer programs are simply patterns of "bits", that, when fed through a certain silicon chip perform the desired operation. A computer cannot understand anything, it has no intelligence and understands nothing, and can understand nothing. You might think that a computer can understand Chess, or work out what 165233 divided by 65 is, or that your user name is "Mike", but in actual fact the computer doesn't know what Chess is, the computer cannot count, or even knows what numbers are, and the computer has no concept of names at all. And a console is just a computer.
And yes, a computer can beat almost anyone at Chess, it can perform mathematical operations far faster than any human can and with absolute accuracy, and it can store your user name, the names of everyone in the phone book, and find them instantly. But, and this is the important thing, the computer does not know that it is doing these things, because it knows nothing. If you throw a ball into the air, the muscles in your arm don't know that they are throwing a ball into the air, the muscles in your arm know nothing at all, and are incapable of knowing anything. Computers, like the muscles in your arm, are utterly incapable of thought.
When you play a computer at Chess, the computer is actually perorming hundreds of thousands, or even millions of tiny instructions, and together these instructions make the computer act as though it can understand and play Chess. The same instructions, in different sequences, can make the computer count, or draw an alien, or anything else. When a television displays a horse, the TV does not know that it's horse, the TV simply sets every single pixel (a pixel is a single dot on a TV or monitor screen) each to it's own colour, and the colour is dictated by the signal that the TV or monitor receives. A computer does almost exactly the same thing, in that a computer reads in each instruction, performs each instruction, then reads and performs the next instruction.
A computer program that is made up of these codes is usually called a "binary" or an executable (the code is in binary (binary is the base two number system) and it is executable, i.e. it can be executed, which means you can run it). But binary code is very hard to write, so programmers tend to write "source" code first. Source code, at it's most basic, is just a long hand way of writing binary code, but it's far easier for humans to use, as it uses decimal or hexadecimal instead of binary, it can contain comments (notes written by the programmer explaining what blocks of code actually do) and can be used to define repeated values. Computers cannot run source code, so source code must be run through a program (called a compiler, usually) that converts the source code to binary that the computer can run.
Also, programmers often tend to use high level languages, which are easy to write, though slower and more resource hungry than binary code. Again, humans write in source, and compile it into binary (though the binary produced is often inferior to the binary code a gifted human could write).
And so, to port ("port" meaning to transfer a program/game from one machine to a different one) game, the porter (programmer) needs the source code, as the source code is easier to understand that the binary, both beause of the language it's in, and hopefully the source contains lots of helpful comments.
A really talented programmer, with lots of spare time, could port a game without the source code, by painstakingly disassembling (also called reverse engineering, it means looking through thr binary code to see exactly what does what) the binary of the original game, but that would take a lot
of work. You could pay a programmer a six month wage deal to do it, but I doubt many people would do it for fun.
Anyway, the thing is, you're right, the source code is needed to port a game, but you need the whole game's source code. But the link you gave only contained part of the source code, enough to write mods for the PC version, but not enough to rebuild the game from scratch. It's not your fault, the terminology is vague.