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> So in order to make this "just work" for Windows users the zip file
> would need to be done using files which have windows style line-endings.

I haven't seen any complaints about .tar.gz files in Windows in all these
years. Perhaps Windows people get precompiled binaries and those that want
to compile Lua know what they should expect.

Anyway, complete newbies should read the FAQ

Those point to Chapter 1 of the book Beginning Lua Programming, which
contains detailed instructions for building and installing Lua.