Solarus (game engine)

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Solarus is a Free and open-source software cross-platform Game engine for developing 2D computer graphics. It has been designed to power Action role-playing games, though, are not limited. The engine is written in C++ and uses Lua (programming language) as its scripting language. It is published under the GNU General Public License.


Solarus offers a Lua API that covers the main topics of game development: audio, video, input, movements, etc. Its specificity is its Action-RPG-dedicated API, that covers the genre's tropes: treasures, switches, blocks, etc. A game made with Solarus is called a quest. It lies in its The Legend of Zelda-like roots. However, the engine and its API are morphing towards a more modular approach.

For game developers, Solarus has a game editor called Solarus Quest Editor, that features a map editor, a sprite editor, a tileset editor[1]

For gamers, Solarus has a game player called Solarus Launcher, that loads Solarus-made games in a similar way than emulators.


Solarus was originally created to overcome RPG Maker limitations when creating Action RPG games[2]. When he was young, Christopho, Solarus creator, created on his spare time the amateur game The Legend of Zelda: Mystery of Solarus with RPG Maker, and wanted to improve its gameplay. He began to make basic C++ in 2006 specifically for this game. The engine was publicly released in 2011, and took its name from an element of the game's plot.

Solarus was progressively freed from its Zelda roots in order to remove every copyrighted element. Today, the engine it totally free: the code (GNU General Public License|GPL v3) as much as its embedded resources (Creative Commons license).

The non-profit organization Solarus Labs was created in 2020 to support the project and receive donations legally.


  1. "Article on Korben".
  2. "Interview of Solarus creator".

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