OpenJazz for PS Vita
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OpenJazz -



is a free, open-source version of the classic Jazz Jackrabbit™ games.

OpenJazz can be compiled on a wide range of operating systems, including Windows, macOS, GNU/Linux and *BSD. Also ports are available for some homebrew platforms, for example Wii and PSP.

To play, you will need the files from one of the original games.

With the demise of DOS-based operating systems, it has become necessary to use emulators to play old DOS games. Jazz Jackrabbit™ deserves more - and would benefit greatly from new features.

Jazz Jackrabbit™

is a PC platform game. Produced by Epic Games (then Epic MegaGames), it was first released in 1994. The fast-paced, colourful gameplay proved popular, and the game won PC Format's Arcade Game of the Year award. Many people still fondly recall the shareware versions.


OpenJazz was started on the 23rd of August, 2005, by Alister Thomson. Academic pressures put the project on hold until late December 2005. The source code was released on the 25th, and the first version with a degree of playability was released on the 15th of January. Since then, a variety of ports have been released by other people.

More academic pressures meant there were few updates over the following few years, but in 2009 a multiplayer version was released.


OpenJazz is available under the GNU General Public License version 2 or later, see licenses.txt for additional information.


Enter to choose a menu option, Escape to go back to the previous menu. F9 to view in-game statistics, P to pause. Alt + Enter switches between full-screen and windowed mode.

The other controls are configurable via the "setup options" menu. By default, the controls are as follows:

  • Left and right arrow keys to move left and right.
  • Under Windows, Alt Gr (right Alt) to jump and the Space bar to shoot.
  • Under Linux, the Space bar to jump and left Alt to shoot.
  • Right Ctrl to change weapon.

Additionally, most game controllers and joysticks that SDL recognizes can be used. However, not all axes or buttons may be available.




OpenJazz ships a basic Makefile that may be used and adapted to the specific needs of the user or platform where it shall run. For network play, you need a platform which natively provides sockets or use SDL_net, then either define USE_SOCKETS or USE_SDL_NET in the Makefile. On the Windows platform, the socket library (-lws2_32) is needed while linking. For music support, you either need ModPlug or xmp. Then define USE_MODPLUG or USE_XMP in the Makefile. ModPlug needs to be patched to properly support looping tracks, otherwise there will be a small gap in the playback, xmp does not have this problem (no patching needed).

For UNIX systems also an autoconf script is provided, used like this:

./configure # `--help` lists options
make [install]

Further (partly outdated) instructions are available at:

other options

  • DATAPATH - use a fixed path for data files
  • HOMEDIR - use the user's home directory for data files
  • SCALE - enable scaling of the video output (i.e. Scale2X...)
  • FULLSCREEN_ONLY - disable window mode, useful for console ports


Execute OpenJazz, depending on the platform and compile time options, the data files are expected to be under different paths (see above). You can also specifiy a game folder as command line argument.


Alister Thomson (alister_j_t at yahoo dot com)