Alientech is a free, open-source game/graphics engine developed with the idea of extendibility. The goal is to create a flexible API that allows developers to create rich interactive applications and accompany it with a wide-ranged toolset to simplify and streamline that process. You can read more about Alientech in the Wiki.
Methods of implementation
The goal of this project is to create a product that is well-suited for both open-source application development and educational purposes. This means that simplicity is a high priority and certain
compromises have been made. The most important such compromise is the lack of cross-platform support. Even though this goes against a lot of principles of both open-software development and indie game
development, it allows the project to focus on a single task and carry it out using industry standard tools and APIs.
Speaking of which...
Tools and APIs used
Alientech focuses on the Windows platform (Vista and 7 in particular) and utilizes the DirectX 10 graphics API. Certain portions of the engine that are generic enough could be compiled for other
platforms, but they are designed with integration into the engine in mind so that is not a feature that will be pursued across versions (for example: the file packing library written for Alientech
can work under any platform as it only depends on system libraries, but the tool provided that does the packing is completely dependent on Windows functionality to obtain directory listings).
In terms of tools, the main one needed for development with the engine is Visual Studio. Even though it is an expensive piece of software for use in an educational environment, Microsoft provides a free, fully featured version for students on their Dreamspark website. Apart from this the goal as development continues will be to only rely on free and/or open-source tools and should one not be available, it will be created and distributed along with the engine.