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I installed it from the software center, but it won't start up. Am I missing something?

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You'll have to provide some more information. Does something else happen instead? And have you tried running it from the terminal? And I'm not able to find this game in the software center - can you provide a link to it on – gertvdijk Dec 22 '12 at 22:19

You'll need a legal copy of the game data copied into the /usr/share/games/rott/ directory, if you are talking about the rott package.

It is a port of the engine to SDL, for running the game on other platforms, but it does not include any game data. You must obtain a legal copy to play the game.

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You can play the freely available shareware version fairly simply:

sudo su
apt-get install rott unzip
mkdir -p /usr/share/games/rott/
cd /usr/share/games/rott/
unzip ROTTSW13.SHR
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Dobey and oli are both correct; you can just use the shareware version of the game if you want to.

However, I thought I would explain how I set it up for my legal cd version of the game, as this may be helpful for you or later readers, and reflects an alternative approach, as I compiled the latest version. You do not have to do this- I thought I would add this answer as another valid approach.

The first thing to do is to find your disks with the game data; you can install the cd or any disk version using dosbox and place that resulting setup in your dos games folder in your home folder. Then compile the program (instructions below) and then copy the executable to /usr/local/bin. Now the game can be run by using a simple Bash launcher:


cd /home/mike/DOS/rott_game

This runs the rott sdl wrapper, which is in the user's path, as the executable has been added to /usr/local/bin. It finds the game data in the folder you suggest in the script; just point it toward the right folder.

The Compilation

Using the latest version of the program from the official site is recommended as there are a lot of fixes in version 1.1.2.

Firstly, you need the sdl development files, so install them with

sudo apt-get install build-essential libsdl1.2-dev libsdl-image1.2-dev libsdl-gfx1.2-dev libsdl-console-dev libsdl-mixer1.2-dev libsdl-net1.2-dev

Then download the source code from the official site and check the md5 sum, then go to your download folder, open terminal and extract it with

tar xzvf rott-1.1.2.tar.gz

Then cd to rott-1.1.2 and then to another directory called rott.

If you are going to use the non-shareware version, you have to compile it from this directory with


If you have the CD version, use instead


See the readme for other options, if you have any other specific compilation requirements or an unusual version of the game.

Then simply run sudo cp rott /usr/local/bin, assuming your present working directory is still the compilation directory. Now you can cd to the folder containing the game data (installed with dosbox) and run the program (see launcher script further above). Enter rott help for the full list of command-line options that can be used when the program is launched.

This sdl port of the game will give you better performance than dosbox, and will look much better: see the screenshot below (running in windowed mode, entered by pressing Alt+Enter).

enter image description here

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Just set up the steam version of ROTT, only needed 4 files.

If you would like to run the full version, you will need to switch your binary via:

update-alternatives --config rott

Make sure


are all in... /usr/share/games/rott/

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