spring man page

spring — An open source RTS game engine — Default Engine


spring [-f|--fullscreen] [-w|--window] [-m|--minimise] [--safemode] [-s|--server IP_OR_HOSTNAME] [-p|--projectiledump] [-t|--textureatlas] [--benchmark TIME [--benchmarkstart TIME]] [-i|--isolation] [--isolation-dir PATH] [-n|--name STRING] [-C|--config FILE] [Script]

spring --list-ai-interfaces

spring --list-skirmish-ais

spring --list-def-tags

spring --list-config-vars

spring [-h|--help]

spring --sync-version

spring [-V|--version]


Spring is a versatile 3D RTS game engine. Using extensively Lua for scripting game-specific code to make nearly every aspect of the engine customizable, from GUI, to unit AI, to pathfinding.

It is mainly designed around online multiplayer games but can also be played in single-player mode against AIs.

The engine can run graphics and simulation in two separate threads, depending on the game and engine settings. This will typically boost the performance on multi-core systems.


-h, --help
Print the options help message and exit
-V, --version
Display program version and exit
Display program sync version (for online gaming) and exit
Disables colorized stdout
Ignore unreccognized arguments
-f, --fullscreen
Run in fullscreen mode
-w, --window
Run in windowed mode
-b, --minimise
Start in background (minimised)
Turns off many things that are known to cause problems (i.e. on PC/Mac’s with lower-end graphic cards)
-s, --server::'IP_OR_HOSTNAME'
Run as a server on the given address
-t, --textureatlas
Dump each finalised textureatlas into textureatlasN.tga
Enable benchmark mode (writes a benchmark.data file). The given number specifies the timespan to test.
Benchmark start time in minutes.
-i, --isolation
Limit the data-dir (games & maps) scanner to one directory (see --isolation-dir and the SPRING_ISOLATED env var)
Specify the isolation-mode data-dir (see --isolation and the SPRING_ISOLATED env var)
Specify the directory used for all saving.
-n, --name::'NAME'
Set your player name
-C, --config::'FILE'
Exclusive configuration file
Dump a list of available AI Interfaces to STDOUT
Dump a list of available Skirmish AIs to STDOUT
Dump a list of available Definition Tags in JSON-format to STDOUT
Dump a list of available Projectile classes in JSON-format to STDOUT
Dump all default config vars in JSON-format to STDOUT
-g, --game::'GAME'
instantly start the GAME with a minimal setup. Requires --map to be present, too. Sets the modoption minimalsetup = 1
-m, --map::'MAP'
Requires --game to be set, too. see --game



The default data-directory (see section DATA DIR).


Contains the users settings for the engine, for things like graphic and sound.


Contains the : separated paths to additional data-dirs (see section DATA DIR).

Enviroment Variables

SPRING_LOG_SECTIONS Selective functionality to change the verbosity (separated by ,).

SPRING_WRITEDIR Define custom primary write DATA DIR. Place where spring saves logs, settings, ...

SPRING_DATADIR Adds additional DATA DIRs Spring will search for files (separated by :).

SPRING_ISOLATED If defined, Spring will stop searching files outside of the binaries directory. If it is set to a valid directory path, it will be used as the isolation directory. See the --isolation and the --isolation-dir options.

SPRING_NOCOLOR Same as spring --nocolor.


Can either be a:

· Spring URL (spring://[username[:password]@]host[:port])

· start script (often named script.txt)

· replay file (*.sdf)

· save game (*.ssf)

Portable Mode

An all-in-one-folder setup, which allows to run Spring without installation. To do so all relevant files (binaries & basecontent) must be in a single folder, esp. spring(.exe), libunitsync.so/unitsync.dll and springsettings.cfg. Spring will then use the all-in-one-folder for writing and won’t do so anywhere else on the system, but it may open other files & directories for reading.

Isolation Mode

Not to confuse with Portable Mode, this mode disables all automatic Data Dir scanning and limit reading & writing to a single folder. This is very useful when games want to run separate from other Spring games. Isolation mode can be enabled by placing an empty isolated.txt next to the spring executable or by setting SPRING_ISOLATED env var.

Data Dirs

Data directories are searched for content, and among other things, may contain:

· config files

· logs

· games

· maps

· AIs

· cache

Sorted by priority the engine may use multiple data directories, but it will use only the one with the highest priority as writable, to write cache & log files to. The hierarchy the engine loads DATA DIRs in can be grouped in 3 sections:

highcustom user writedirectory defined via --write-dir

directory defined via --write-dir

directory defined via --write-dir

automatic scannedCONFIG_HOME





lowcustom user readSPRING_DATADIR envvar

SpringData configtag

SpringData configtag

SpringData configtag


Config directories in user’s home.



C:/.../My Documents/My Games/Spring/

C:/.../My Documents/Spring/

C:/.../All Users/Applications/Spring/

INSTALL_DIR Location of spring binary.

ETC_DIRS Additional : separated DATA DIRs defined in /etc/spring/datadir.


*nix/MacOSX: /usr/.../share/spring & binary dir if is Data Dir

MacOSX: .../Spring.app/Contents/Resources/share/games/spring/base/

Windows: Install directory


Mode A (--isolation): INSTALL_DIR

Mode B (--isolation-dir): supplied dir

Config Files

Spring can load configurations from multiple files and merge them. So similar to DATA DIRs there is one file where the engine writes to and multiple read-only files.

It scans following directories for config files :

priorityscanned directories
exclusivefile defined via --config (when defined only this is loaded)
highwrite DATA DIR
(skipped in Isolated mode)

*nix/MacOSX: ~/.springrc

Windows: C:\Users\USER\AppData\Local\springsettings.cfg
lowall read DATA DIRs

(The one with highest priority will be used for writing.)

The filename of such config files can be as following:

springrc-%Engine_Version% (*nix/MacOSX only)
lowspringrc (*nix/MacOSX only)

(An example for a versioned config file is "springsettings-94.1.cfg".)

See Also

spring-legacy(6) spring-headless(6) spring-dedicated(6)


More information about Spring can be found at link: http://springrts.com


Spring was written by the Spring developers.

This manual page was written by Marco Amadori <marco.amadori@gmail.com[1]>, for the Debian project (and may be used by others).





Referenced By

spring-dedicated(6), spring-headless(6), spring-legacy(6).

Explore man page connections for spring(6).

Spring package 05/25/2016