This article describes a special version of the game called 'Nightly'. It introduces you to the phenomenon, tells you where to get it, how get it up and running and includes some related information.
That Nightly thingy, what's that all about?
OpenTTD developer Rubidium would describe a nightly as: "a snapshot of the development leading towards the next major stable release".
In more plain language, the current nightly is the very latest version of OpenTTD available for download from the OpenTTD Web Page. It includes the latest new features, but might also include the latest bugs.
But why do you call it 'nightly'?
A 'nightly' is called a 'nightly' because a new version is generated and made available for download every night (around 18:00 UTC, that's 6 pm UTC for the ones using the twelve-hour clock system).
What are the (dis)advantages?
One major advantage is that you can use all the new stuff which is not available in the latest stable release. A minor disadvantage is that a nightly might contain a serious bug affecting gameplay. But that's not too much of a problem, is it? You can get another nightly the next day (or is that night?), which most likely does work just fine!
On the other hand, a nightly usually also includes the latest bugfixes. From this point of view, a nightly is usually more stable than the latest stable release!
Another downside to playing on the latest nightly build is that the majority of players playing multiplayer play on the latest stable build. This will cause a version mismatch and therefore you may have a harder time finding a server to play on.
The latest translations are also included in these builds.
Installation of a nightly, is it that difficult?
No, not at all. Although a nightly doesn't include an installer, installation of it is not really that difficult. There are two options, manually installing an OpenTTD Nightly, or using an Automatic Updater. Please read on, and I'll take you through the process right away!
Some automatic updaters, like OpenTTD Auto Update, just need to be set once, and they will easily, without hassle, update to the latest nightly. See the OpenTTD Updaters page for more automatic updaters.
Where to get it
You can get yourself a copy of the latest nightly from the Nightly Download Page. Please read the information at the top of the page, as that might be useful to you. After that, select the nightly for your operating system and save the compressed archive in a location where you can find it later on.
If you want to use older nightly, you can find compiled versions from cdn.openttd.org.
Extracting the archive
Because you just downloaded a compressed archive, you need to get the contents out of it. You remember where you put the archive, right? The exact process depends on your operating system and is described below for the major operating systems.
Windows XP or higher can extract a zip file by default. For older versions you need an additional tool like the free 7-Zip. Programs like WinZIP or WinRAR will also do just fine.
In all cases, you first need to find a location where to put the extracted contents. It's useful to create a new folder to put these new game files in.
Now, the easiest way to extract the archive is using the drag and drop method. Doubleclick the file you downloaded earlier on to see what's in there. You also have to open the folder you just created. Make sure both windows are in view. Now select all contents in the zip-archive and drag it into you newly made folder. That's it. Please read on in the next section; the game isn't working yet!
To extract a .deb archive, use: dpkg -x openttd-trunk-blah.deb
To extract a .tar.bz2 file use: tar -xjf openttd-trunk-blah.tar.bz2
To extract a .tar.gz file use: tar -xzf openttd-trunk-blah.tar.gz
To extract a .zip file use: unzip openttd-trunk-blah.zip
You may need to install some packages that are not installed by default on your distribution to have the above commands work.
Alternatively, GUI programs such as ark (KDE) and file-roller (GNOME) exist to extract archives.
Choose the Debian Lenny deb file and when prompted, choose to open the file with GDebi, all necessary dependencies will be installed automatically.
The game files should be copied to either /usr/share/games/openttd/data or ~/.openttd/data.
If you want music, you have to install the package timidity from the repositories.
OSX will extract a .tar.gz or .zip file when you open it (double-click in Finder, click it in your 'Downloads' stack).
Copying Graphics and Music files
All OpenTTD installations require graphics and sound data, these can either be the original game graphics or OpenGFX or OpenSFX. Having at least one graphics and sound set is mandatory. You need to download/copy the files to the /data directory in the folder you just extracted the new game files in.
If you want to use the original graphics then the files you require are:
Additionally, you may want to copy the original game music. To accomplish that, you need to copy the /gm folder from the TTD CD to the folder you just extracted the new game files in (don't put it in the /data dir!).
Now you're almost set to go. It wasn't that hard, was it?
OpenTTD has the habit of putting the configuration file (openttd.cfg) somewhere in your computer account's home directory (that's My documents in Windows). You probably have one there already.
Remember, that nightly version may contain bugs, so you probably want to keep that stable version you have installed already. So would it be wise to let that new nightly overwrite the good old openttd.cfg? Personally, I don't think so. Some people have many different nightly versions sitting on their hard drives, each with their own openttd.cfg.
How to do that? Well, that's fairly easy, too. Two options:
- Create a new empty file in the folder you extracted the new game files in, and name it openttd.cfg.
- Copy the openttd.cfg from your home directory into your new nightly directory.
In both cases, OpenTTD will update the file to match all new options available in the new nightly.
Bugs in the Nightly
If you think you have found a bug download a copy of the latest nightly build (or compile a version yourself) and check if the bug still exists.
If the bug is still there, please first check OpenTTD's GitHub issues (https://github.com/OpenTTD/OpenTTD/issues) to make sure that the bug has yet to be reported. If you cannot find a report, please make one on GitHub.
New features in the nightlies
As written earlier on, the nightlies contain new features which are not available in the latest stable or beta versions. The OpenTTD GitHub commits page is the most reliable way to see a list of new features (although it may not always be obvious to non-developers what each commit does).