A fifteen year open source effort to remake Dungeon Keeper just hit 1.0

Dungeon Keeper is a stone cold, never-bettered classic of the management genre, no matter how many other games try to mimic its devilish setting and moreish progression. The only issue is that the 1997 original is a little ugly and constrained by modern standards.

Enter KeeperFx, a long-running open source project to make the original Dungeon Keeper run at higher resolutions, with widescreen support, improved AI, online multiplayer, modern controls and user-made levels. After fifteen years of on-off development, it just hit 1.0.

The 1.0 release includes “500 fixes and features” added since the last version. It now runs at higher framerates, with flexibly sized maps, new units, new customisation options, and a lot more.

Work began on KeeperFX back in 2008 as an attempt to make Dungeon Keeper run more smoothly on Windows. Alec first covered those efforts in 2010. Development was then stalled until 2016, when new KeeperFX developers took over the open source project and carried it forward to today.

The result is something far more ambitious. GOG’s release of Dugeon Keeper Gold will already make Bullfrog’s original DOS release run comfortably under Windows, whereas KeeperFX goes so far as to make it also run at 4K, for example. It also makes it more customisable, so the game’s still existant level-creating community can also make new creatures and more. There’s an online resource for downloading custom content.

You can find download links and instructions via keeperfx.net. You’ll need a copy of Dungeon Keeper to play, such as the cheaper-than-chips aforementioned GOG release. There are specific install instructions for how to make it play nice with KeeperFX.