A faithful clone of the brilliant simulation game The Settlers 1 aka Serf City. There are still bugs and a few features are also missing, in particular the computer opponents. The plan is to add networked multiplayer functionality in the future. You can help develop this game at GitHub: There is also an IRC channel on Freenode named #freeserf.

Source code

SDL and SDL_mixer are required to compile. The build system is tested using Linux/GCC. Get the code from GitHub:

Data file

The original data file from the PC version is required for the game to function. The name of the file is SPAE.PA, SPAD.PA, SPAF.PA, or SPAU.PA depending on the language. It is very important that you copy the data file after actually installing the original game, otherwise the data file will be compressed!. The data file should be around 1.3Mb in size.

Latest release

Latest beta release 0.1.1 released on 2013-11-28. Source code packages and windows builds are available here.

Other builds

  • Open Pandora: Jonas Gerlach has made a build for this platform available here

Known bugs and missing features

The known bugs are tracked in the issue tracker at github. Please report any bugs there.

Video preview

  • Pingback: Settlers | Blog | Settlers I remake now open source()

  • Vesa Piittinen

    If anyone has interest on picking up this project I can give what resources I have in :) Unfortunatenaly my main interest is on Settlers II, so I have no time to join with the development, but these two are the only “real” classic Settlers there are so I guess both fit the topic of the site.

  • Spike

    well, thats really sad… hopefully someone will pick it up and finish it :)

  • Xxxluzxxx

    Hi! i am interested to continue this project. I have started making own Settlers Clone based on Widelands. I have changed a lot of code. Widelands has transformed into Settlers! Sounds, pictures, original menu, buildings and others! But suddenly i wanted to change size of my partition in Mac OS X and puff !!! Partition disappeared !!! All my work has gone :(
    Please write me xxxluzxxx@me:twitter .com
    Write me what works, what is to do. Send me also source code in rar, zip or tar if You can :)

  • Jon Lund Steffensen

    Please see the link to github above.

  • John Virgo

    I consider this my personal mission to finish this project.Thank you for Open Sourcing it.

  • Bartłomiej Godziński


  • Bartłomiej Godziński

    download ?

  • Jon Lund Steffensen

    Hi, I’ve made a version available for windows: . See also the info above on the page. If you’re using linux you’ll have to build it yourself.

  • David F Porteous

    Hey Jon, This looks great. I’ve always loved the freedom of the original settlers and every few years I go back to it. I hope you or someone else finds the time to finish this.

  • Duke2010

    Wow this is amazing. The first settlers was great, to think it fitted on a couple of floppy disks and the latest versions of the game that take up gigs of data still doesnt give the freedom of the original! The most important thing thats missing from RTS games these days is randomly generated maps. They go all out of the graphics but that means you lose the generated maps and thats what makes an RTS last forever. Another good example of a classic RTS is Transport Tycoon, again random maps mean you could play that right now.

    Also I think Settlers1 is perfect for a mobile game. They released Settlers3 on mobile but its too complex for a touch screen but S1 would be just right because there are no units to direct.
    Anyway, pity you cant finish this, good work though!

  • supersim

    How do you build the windows version?

  • Jon Lund Steffensen

    I built it with mingw on linux. You have to obtain/build a windows DLL of SDL as well.

  • Bartłomiej Godziński

    when the end of the project?

  • Bartłomiej Godziński

    i like it ^.^

  • Pingback: What is the best programming language?()

  • Bartłomiej Godziński

    music ^.^ but, i myself that Amiga version is better !

  • Bartłomiej Godziński

    I look forward to the final, I hope you do a good job – I would like that this game was made ​​better than the original. I have been following your progress and I am delighted I have a few comments.

    – Blinking cursor in the game
    – The resolution is too high
    – Music that could come from the Amiga version

  • Svein Engelsgjerd

    Settlers was the first and only game I have played for hours and hours… It is great to have such a nice remake. Please consider allowing to scale the window so that it will be easier to see stuff on high resolution screen and please get save game to work! :)

  • Jon Lund Steffensen

    freeserf has experimental save game support since last saturday!

  • Svein Engelsgjerd

     Wooohoooh helt fantastisk (fantastic!)

  • Alois Mahdal

    Hi, I tried to build on Debian Wheezy, but running ./configure, I receive errors:
    ./configure: line 2290: AM_INIT_AUTOMAKE: command not found
    and later:
    ./configure: line 3261: AM_PATH_SDL: command not found
    ./configure: line 3262: syntax error near unexpected token `SDL_mixer,’
    ./configure: line 3262: `PKG_CHECK_MODULES(SDL_mixer, SDL_mixer)’
    (full log:

    I have installed libsdl1.2-dev (1.2.15-5), and automake (1:1.11.6-1) and build-essential (11.5).

    Am I missing something? According to text above and INSTALL, I should see README, but there is nothing on deps/building there.

    Thanks anyway for working on resurrection of this awesome game!

  • Václav Zeman

    The preview video is marked private. I cannot view it.

  • Jon Lund Steffensen

    Fixed I hope. Apparently youtube changed it to private some time ago for some reason.

  • Jon Lund Steffensen

    I cannot immediately see what the problem is but surely something is wrong with your generated configure script if it tries to execute commands like AM_INIT_AUTOMAKE, AM_PATH_SDL and so on.

  • Jimmer

    Amazing man, can’t wait for the final version keep up the good work!!

  • Kamil

    Is this possible to edit What is inside this file? Graphics only?

  • Jon Lund Steffensen

    Yes, why not? As long as you understand the data layout. It contains sprites, music, sounds, and tables used for animations.

  • Tommek

    Great Game! I love it.

  • Pingback: Soon: freeserf 0.1 (now: first release candidate) | jonls devblog()

  • npark

    A great game so far. But it might be good to mention somewhere that you need the original files from the PC version. In the (German) Amiga version the files are named differently. So I assume that these files don’t work with Freeserf.

  • Jon Lund Steffensen

    I’d assume so as well, but did you try? I don’t have the files from the amiga game to check.

  • Pingback: AmigaOS4: FreeSerf |()

  • Oliver Tacke

    Great project!

  • timbuck93

    Will you still work on redshift? Games like this just don’t interest me, I’m more of a halo, Titanfal, Call od Duty kind of guy!

    I sent you another comment with two suggestions, I’m in no rush though but if you could figure them out in the next couple of months that would be great!

  • ReDTeZ

    make this multiplayer on the internet – nice modern resolution grfx and you would have a seriously good game on your hands – the only reason this game faltered was the lack of the features mentioned above.

  • Serf yellow

    Android build, any chance ?

    currently running the game in Dosbox “works” but the interface is screwed.

  • Jon Lund Steffensen

    Someone was trying to make an android port a long time ago but I don’t think it is active anymore. On the other hand, we now use SDL2 and I hear it has some support for android. The user interface probably will have to be adapted in major ways though.