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Multiplayer Conway's Game of Life (desktop app + server) implemented in Rust


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Multiplayer Conway's Game of Life!

License: GPL v3 build status Discord

Life In Action Patterns!

How to Play

Click on the desired menu option after the game boots. Start Game is a good place to... start ;).

Once in game:

  • Left click toggles a cell (by default).
  • The number keys control what left click does (whether it toggles a cell or drops a pattern).
  • If dropping a pattern, you can use Shift-left and Shift-right to rotate the pattern.
  • Enter to toggle chatbox focus.
  • + and - to zoom in and out
  • Press r to toggle running/paused (Will not work in multiplayer mode).
  • Space to single step (Will not work in multiplayer mode).
  • Esc to go back to the menu.


Conwayste has been developed with cross-platform support in mind since day one using the Rust programming language! Your dependencies will likely vary based on your choice of operating system.

The easiest way to get the Rust compiler and toolchain is using Rustup.

This has been validated as runnable on:

  • Ubuntu Linux (18.04 and 20.04)
  • Fedora Linux 32
  • Windows 10
  • OpenBSD
  • macOS Catalina (10.15.7)

There be dragons for any other operating system not listed above. Please tread carefully 😄.

Windows / MacOS

The Conwayste client and server compile and run right out of the box. Skip directly to Installation.


On Linux, the ALSA development files are required. These are provided as part of the libasound2-dev package on Debian and Ubuntu distributions and alsa-lib-devel on Fedora. For any other distribution, please refer to your package manager and/or compile them from source.

Also install OpenSSL development files with openssl-dev or openssl-devel (depending on your distro).


doas pkg_add llvm

You will also need this environment variable. Add to your profile if desired:

export LIBCLANG_PATH=/usr/local/lib


Please clone this repository, and build the client and server using cargo. The build may take several minutes to complete, depending on your system specs.

$ git clone --recurse-submodules
$ cd conwayste/

If you cloned this previously and want to update, note that you may need to run git submodule init then git submodule update after pulling.

Playing the Game

Running The Client

$ cargo run --bin client

Running the Server

$ cargo run --bin server --name "Example Server" --public-address

If --public-address is specified, the server automatically registers itself with the Official Conwayste Registrar. Leave this off if you are running a private server.

An alternate registrar can be specified with the --registrar-url option:

$ cargo run --bin server --name "Example Server" --public-address --registrar-url

Use this if we didn't pay our server bills and someone else has their own registrar running. :)


Did you write your own game engine?

Nope! We are using the ggez engine and give many thanks to its developers and contributers. Head over to their GitHub page to learn more about it.

When will this be ready?

The developers have busy lives and enjoy working on this in their spare time. If you are waiting for a release, then I encourage you to contribute 😄. This could take the form of bug reports or design feedback as well as lines of code.

My installation fails in Linux. What should I do?

It's likely that we have not kept the installation steps up-to-date. Please Check the Ubuntu section in .travis.yml for a guaranteed up-to-date list of packages if your installation fails. :)

I found a bug! What should I do?

It would help the developers a lot if you could submit an issue in GitHub describing the bug.


  • aaronm04
  • manghi

Your name could be here! Pull requests are welcome!