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A parser for Freelancer and its formats

Project description


flint (Freelancer Intel) is a platform-independent parser and ORM for the data files of Freelancer, a 2003 space sim for Windows developed by Digital Anvil.

Freelancer is interesting in that the game world can be entirely defined in INI files, a format more usually used to hold simple configuration data. Additional content (e.g. text, icons and models) are stored in a variety of binary formats.

flint implements a parser for Freelancer-style INIs, as well as platform-independent reader implementations for every binary file format used by Freelancer - BINI, resource DLL, and UTF. All these implementations can be found in flint/formats. Additionally, resource string handling incorporates RDL (Freelancer's markup language) to HTML translation and some of the maths surrounding Freelancer's navmap has been implemented.

Taken together, this yields a simple yet powerful API that can be used to explore the game world, dump data or act as a foundation for Freelancer-related applications.

flint explicitly supports vanilla Freelancer and Discovery Freelancer, but in principle should (though it's not yet) be implemented robustly enough to work with any valid mod, no matter how esoteric.


Install the latest stable version from PyPI with pip:

pip install fl-flint

Or install the latest development version straight from this repository:

pip install -U

Built wheels are also available under Releases, as is a changelog.

flint requires Python >= 3.6.

API documentation

The documentation has been moved to the wiki.

Ongoing work

  • Entities
    • Comprehensive classification of Zone types
  • Missions
    • Reading mbases.ini
  • Interface
    • Reading infocardmap.ini
    • Bidirectionally transforming RDL from and to XHTML without using a crude lookup table
  • Paths
    • Extracting paths from Freelancer.exe
  • Formats
    • Writer implementations for formats


Thanks to the admins, members and supporters of The Starport for hosting an invaluable source of information about modding Freelancer.

In addition, particular thanks goes to:

  • Bas Westerbaan for documenting the BINI format
  • Treewyrm for documenting UTF
  • adoxa and cshake for deciphering RDL
  • cshake and Alex for providing a cross-platform DLL parser, which facilitated early development
  • Syrus for support in the early stages of development

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