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Valve Begins Listing Linux Requirements For Certain Games On Steam

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the fully-updated-GPL-drivers dept.

Ubuntu 332

Deathspawner writes "Perhaps hinting at the fact that the official Steam for Linux launch isn't too far off, Valve has begun updating some game pages to include Linux system requirements. Some games don't list only Ubuntu as the main supported distro, with some listing Linux Mint and Fedora as well. A common theme is that Valve recommends you always use a 'fully updated' OS, regardless of which distro you use. And based on the system requirements laid out so far, it's safe to say that Serious Sam 3: BFE will undoubtedly be the most system-intensive game released at launch."

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332 comments

Why would you want to game on Linux (-1, Flamebait)

PopAndGame (2790489) | about a year ago | (#42217765)

As a Mac user I know the feeling, but what would you even acquire by trying to game on Linux? There is Macs for unixy world and it has better support than Linux will ever will. Of course Windows is the best platform but mostly because they have things like XNA and .NET. Microsoft has really played their game well. But why on Linux rather than Mac? While Crossover isn't supporting all the games it's at least better and many games have Mac Ports? So if you want to do both unixy world and games why not Mac?

The only good thing about this is the feeling that maybe Mac ports become more frequent too, but I'm not putting lot into that hope as far as Linux support goes.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42217823)

I'll let everyone else explain to you why.

Why game on anything other than Windows? (5, Interesting)

getto man d (619850) | about a year ago | (#42217861)

Because having the freedom to choose is good.

Disclaimer: I avidly use Steam on OSX, but I'm constantly frustrated with it's buggy state. If the linux client proves to be better over time (with a good offering of games) I'll be upgrading my linux box and going that route.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42217865)

Two words. Apple haters. Whether that hate is from business practices, price, or just "cool to bash Apple".

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (4, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#42217983)

If it turns out that my video card isn't good enough for Valve, then I can upgrade it. I can't do that with a Mac.

You can kid yourself all you like.

Snickering at Apple products is all about having at least half a clue and knowing that their products just don't cut it.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218063)

>If it turns out that my video card isn't good enough for Valve, then I can upgrade it. I can't do that with a Mac.

Almost all Mac machines are laptops (the Mac Mini and the iMac count as laptops as they use laptop components). When was the last time you saw an upgradeable laptop?

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (2)

rubycodez (864176) | about a year ago | (#42218169)

You can indeed upgrade the graphics cards on some laptops, and there are external graphics cards that can be used with others

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218335)

I can upgrade almost everything inside my laptop. It's 4 years old now and I can just replace the cpu and graphics card for current ones.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (2)

Jerry Smith (806480) | about a year ago | (#42218467)

>If it turns out that my video card isn't good enough for Valve, then I can upgrade it. I can't do that with a Mac.

Almost all Mac machines are laptops (the Mac Mini and the iMac count as laptops as they use laptop components). When was the last time you saw an upgradeable laptop?

Good point you made there. Apple nigh abandoned its desktop users. Now I'm quite fond of desktops, and desktop gaming. And on my budget my next desktop won't be a mac, but probably/hopefully a linux-mint-debian (I hope I wrote that correctly) desktop. Not a laptop. Not a mac.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (2)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#42218549)

So Apple goes out of it's way to make machines that will quickly become doorstops. Thanks for clearing that up.

That's a great reason to avoid Apple right there.

A 5 year old Mac is stuck on light duty.

A 5 year old PC can have a (cheap) new GPU shoved in it and it will happily run current games on Steam.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1, Informative)

iroll (717924) | about a year ago | (#42218615)

No, no it can't. A two or three year old PC can have a new GPU and a memory upgrade and be semi-competant again. A five or six year old PC needs to be rebuilt from the bottom up.

I know, because I'm in the process of doing that right now. My Core 2 Duo + AMD 5570 has gone as far as it is going to go. It's had a GPU update and a memory refresh. It is now CPU limited in most games and buying a new GPU for this old box would be a waste of money.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218179)

Oh no. I just love linux, and don't care much for other platforms, that's it.

You're the hater :-)

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (5, Informative)

Sylak (1611137) | about a year ago | (#42217871)

Because some people like video games, and some people like Linux as a primary OS. There's a lot more overlap than you seem to think there is here, especially with people who would rather spend the money on a custom-built gaming rig than on a Mac Pro.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (3, Interesting)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#42217881)

Why as a Linux user would I ever want to game on a Mac?

Windows is the best platform? Can I have whatever you are smoking?

Mac hardware is fine, but the OS quite frankly sucks. It tries so hard to not be unixy that it really repels me.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42217939)

use the terminal then, can't get any more unixy than that

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#42218005)

Actually the mac standard terminal app is a great example at how shitty the UNIXy experience on OSX really is.

I would explain more, but if you think that is a unix experience it would be casting pearls before swine.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218099)

I have used both OS X and Linux over the years for *NIX development and I prefer OS X. The only problem I have with Terminal.app is its lack of clickable links.

Would you please elaborate on why you consider OS X to not be a good UNIX experience?

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

lattyware (934246) | about a year ago | (#42218281)

I've just started using OS X (got a Retina MBP, great hardware), and it's way less convenient than Linux. I'm probably going to switch off it soon as some stuff is really starting to bug me - the main one being the lack of a good package manager. Sure, homebrew exists and it kind of does the job, but it's horrible compared to what I'm used to with Pacman and the AUR under Arch.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (5, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#42218283)

Lack of FFM, lack of customizability, lack of middle click highlight and paste. The fact that for some reason applications do not live in /bin and for some reason do not end up in my PATH after installation.

The lack of decent package management is another huge pain. It means like windows many application have their own method of updating which is cumbersome compared to apt or yum.

Basically my biggest usability complaints stem from a lack of X11 conventions that I expect with a UNIXy experience. The whole OSX desktop seems to be designed to only have one window open at a time.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

PopAndGame (2790489) | about a year ago | (#42218383)

It improves hugely if you install Path Finder for explorer replacement.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#42218455)

What exactly does that improve?
It looks like just another finder. I am not sure how that helps me. I am not really interested in some graphical file browser.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (2)

Kremmy (793693) | about a year ago | (#42217885)

Because as a Unix system, OS X is terribly supported. They made awkward changes to break POSIX compatibility in their basic userland. Sure, we can iTunes all day, but when it comes down to actual work, Linux saves the day with by being a serious UNIX that's not trying to glam over its shortcomings.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42217895)

macs cost an order of magnitude more

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42217975)

also using macports/homebrew kind of sucks.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

sorensenbill (1931240) | about a year ago | (#42217897)

In short, it's not open enough, I think Apple over all sucks and won't support them, and lastly I'm not paying an extra $500+ for a fruit logo on my computer.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42217903)

As a Mac user I know the feeling, but what would you even acquire by trying to game on Linux?

To put it simply, anyone serious about gaming won't.

However, there are people who run Linux (for whatever reason) who do play games (even if only on consoles/etc.), or would play games if it were possible. Valve's looking at this, and attempting to build a market there. Smart decision on their part, since Steam is at least potentially threatened by app stores on Mac and now Windows.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42217907)

"Of course Windows is the best platform" - Troll harder, bro.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42217943)

The really, really short version: Because Windows sucks and Macs are expensive as fuck.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (5, Insightful)

HaZardman27 (1521119) | about a year ago | (#42217947)

Because most Linux users don't want to be subjected to Apple's control of what you can and cannot do on your computer. Not to mention the Apple tax you pay for the hardware. Why do you even ask? What can anyone possibly stand to lose by making more software available on more platforms?

Mac OS X is an open platform ... (2, Insightful)

perpenso (1613749) | about a year ago | (#42218693)

Because most Linux users don't want to be subjected to Apple's control of what you can and cannot do on your computer.

Mac users are not subject to such control. Mac OS X is an open platform. You are free to get apps straight from the developer, the Apple App Store is not required.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218701)

What is it, EXACTLY, that Apple won't let you do on your own computer? I can install, compile, and run ANYTHING I want, including any and all open source products. Sure, by default they try to protect you from yourself to only install "approved" apps, but that's a one-time trip to a Security control panel to turn that off. I'm 100% sure that people who say the things you say have never actually used an Apple computer. Please stop repeating stuff that isn't true.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

craigminah (1885846) | about a year ago | (#42217953)

Steam was released for Mac around May 12, 2010. To answer your question, I'd want to game on any platform I use daily. People use Linux for one reason or another and it's nice to be able to play a game or two.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steam_%28software%29#Mac_OS_X

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42217955)

The only good thing about this is the feeling that maybe Mac ports become more frequent too,

I feel so sorry for people like you....

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42217961)

If I were willing to put up with closed source proprietary bullshit I would just install Windows and then I could play every game ever made for a PC.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#42218589)

Then you would have to put up with Windows.

Not all proprietary software is as bad as the crap that comes from Microsoft. Not all proprietary software is as prone to trap you either.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (5, Informative)

ilovepi (1413699) | about a year ago | (#42217979)

So if you want to do both unixy world and games why not Mac?.

1) Some people like Linux more than either of the proprietary OSes. This might be because they can configure Linux more, or because it's free, or because it's ideologically free, or because their friend told them to run it, or any of a thousand other reasons.

2) Why not? Many indie developers have already made Linux-compatible games that are also on steam. For instance, most of the Humble Indie bundles have had a requirement of running on Linux, and most of those games also provided steam keys.

3) Other people aren't a Apple shills/trolls?

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (3, Interesting)

Dancindan84 (1056246) | about a year ago | (#42217993)

I'm going to go with cost as a primary one. That better support you refer to comes with a pretty hefty premium. Also, most Linux folks I'm imagine aren't real fans of Apple's walled garden approach when it comes to... well everything. Macs may be a closer blood relative to Linux with it being basically BSD under the hood, but ideologically they're a LONG way off.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#42218043)

If I wanted to use a proprietary OS that pissed me off continually, why would I not just use windows?

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218013)

You are either a troll, or extremely uninformed.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218015)

Oh the Irony, if you want to play native AAA games on systems other than Windows it's going to be Linux.
Poor Mac users, they were gaming nobodies for the last 15 years, they will continue to be hippy gaming nobodies for the forseable future.
Enjoy your "true unix" Apple fans, linux users will enjoy AAA games. ^_^

Re: Why would you want to game on Linux (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218477)

I doubt it. Once you've ported the app to use OpenGL you've already done most the work for getting it to work on Linux or OS X. Compared to getting a Windows app to work natively on Linux, getting a Linux app to work natively on OS X is a walk in the park. Plus I imagine the game manufacturers will want to go after the Mac install base. Have you seen the number of Mac laptops in the average college classroom?

Re: Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#42218685)

Bullshit. Anything not-Microsoft is going to be just as hard to deal with because that's simply how Microsoft has engineered the situation. If you live in their little garden, it's going to be hard to leave. That's just the way it is.

It doesn't matter what the platform is.

On the other hands, most of the other platforms are not nearly as "exclusive" as Windows. They just don't have the gall of Microsoft or the longstanding desktop monopoly based on legacy DOS applications.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (2)

poetmatt (793785) | about a year ago | (#42218047)

easy answer #1:

no pirating is required, no "stealing" is required, and since the OS is free it's always going to be kept up to date.

Nothing other than Linux is free to keep up to date, and allows you to do so essentially for the life of the hardware.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (2)

toejam13 (958243) | about a year ago | (#42218115)

The migration to Linux goes beyond simply bringing games to a new platform. It could be seen as an attempt by Valve to diversify in light of Microsoft's and Apple's closed app store platforms.

In the future, Windows and MacOS may only allow you to install new software packages through their stores. They may allow a small number of third party stores to exist in order to prevent anti-trust accusations, but chances are that they'll demand a cut of all sales.

No such issues of power consolidation currently exist in the Linux desktop ecosystem. I don't think the culture would allow it. Just look at how their cousins over in the Android mobile sector deal with it - a few taps in the system settings and you're free to install all the apps from 3rd party sites you want.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

PopAndGame (2790489) | about a year ago | (#42218263)

Windows also has the HUGE subculture of third platform apps (and games). There's no way Microsoft would make such a huge change. It wouldn't even serve them. Remember that Microsoft sells Windows, not give it free!

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218449)

If you buy into all this hype about "the end of the desktop PC," it is quite reasonable to believe that MS envisions a convergence of the gaming desktop and xbox. Steam would be in a bad place, were that the case. Of course, there will be a million tiny pushes against such a trend, this being one of them. As long as a desktop (including gaming) PC can be had, MS will be forced to stay open. This is a good thing for everyone, especially Windows users who are more technical than your grandma, but less than a typical Linux user (since they have less ability to switch to an alternative OS). And macs don't count, they are just as susceptible, if not more, to this concern.

Because you have a Linux Box?? (1)

RobertLTux (260313) | about a year ago | (#42218257)

My big question is if you have a TriBoot Linux /Mac /Win system short of the publisher being a Rotted Male Organ wiould you ahve to buy each platform seperately?? (or would your Steam Account load the "correct" platform each time from one purchase)

Re:Because you have a Linux Box?? (1)

PopAndGame (2790489) | about a year ago | (#42218437)

On Mac almost all games work on every platform. Only different game I know is Activision's Black Ops.

Re: Because you have a Linux Box?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218507)

If Steam on OS X and Windows are anything to go by then the answer is no. When Steam came out for OS X and I installed it on my MacBook Pro, I was pleasantly surprised that I was able to install Half Life 2 and other games I bought for Windows years ago for no additional cost. I imagine it will be the same with Linux.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (5, Informative)

Zeikcied (1630059) | about a year ago | (#42218285)

Because I run Linux, I like Linux, and I want to play games on Linux. Does there have to be a more complex answer than that?

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218333)

Linux is like going back in time in the '60, to get laid. You have the assurange that your partner is clean, ages well and has a certain disease immunity.
Macs are similar, only that you pay for those services.
Windows ... is like paying Microsoft for the privilege of using their services. Which mean, blindfold, bent over, in stocks in the middle of the town, for anyone with the right equipment to screw you over.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218475)

Mac has WAY worse support than Linux, or has apple finally gotten around to a sane X implementation and Wine can work OOTB? I've been gaming on Linux since 2001, and even back then Quake 3 Linux performed WAY better than Quake 3 mac. Windows may be king but don't assume the bastard son of NextStep is the god of unix gaming, it's far from it!

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

Bangmaker (1420175) | about a year ago | (#42218575)

Graphics card utilization is still rather far behind in OSX. There have been several tests comparing Windows and OSX for graphics card performance - such as this one (http://www.macworld.com/article/1155124/mac_windows_graphics.html). Because Linux is open source and is supported by avid enthusiasts, it is quite possible that the Linux port of Steam may begin to utilize the graphics card through the operating system more successfully than OSX does. Essentially, one shared barrier to the quality of gaming on UNIX operating systems - graphics support - is conceivably less detrimental to Linux than it is to OSX. I could see Steam for Linux surpassing Steam in a very short time. The upfront cost of the computer means that it is cheeper to get into gaming on Linux that it is on OSX, and Linux users have consistently shown (through the humble bundle) that they are willing to pay well for games.

Games are sometimes a secondary consideration ... (1)

perpenso (1613749) | about a year ago | (#42218635)

Why would you want to game on Linux

If a person is primarily interested in games then a Windows PC is probably the best choice. Hence the popularity of dual boot Windows/Linux rigs among Linux enthusiasts.

However games are sometimes a secondary consideration. A person may have chosen their computer and operating system for some non-gaming reason and that person may still want to play games. This is just as true for Linux as it is for Mac OS X.

Wine and Crossover are doable but they have a cost, an overhead. A fully native port will yield a better experience.

That said, the economics of a fully native Linux port has yet to be proven. If Linux game sales merely cannibalize Windows game sales then the developer will not really see a benefit. Valve may be in a unique position in that Steam for Linux will subsidize their ports.

Re:Why would you want to game on Linux (1)

Infernal Device (865066) | about a year ago | (#42218733)

As a Mac user I know the feeling, but what would you even acquire by trying to game on Linux? There is Macs for unixy world and it has better support than Linux will ever will. Of course Windows is the best platform but mostly because they have things like XNA and .NET. Microsoft has really played their game well. But why on Linux rather than Mac? While Crossover isn't supporting all the games it's at least better and many games have Mac Ports? So if you want to do both unixy world and games why not Mac?

The only good thing about this is the feeling that maybe Mac ports become more frequent too, but I'm not putting lot into that hope as far as Linux support goes.

Valve isn't the problem here - they've been good about bringing their AAA content to Mac and keeping it supported. I expect that they will continue to do the same with Linux.

The problem is that they are the distributors (through Steam) for a bunch of publishers that aren't Mac friendly. However, this gives them a reason to change, if they want to. Some of them can't afford to, some of them just won't and some of them will even be dickbags about it.

A lot of those same publishers are willing to be completely mediocre in their support and decide that supporting Windows is enough. Valve apparently looked at the situation, said "Windows 8 WTF" and is moving to expand their offerings so that maybe one day they can laugh in Ballmer's balloon-shaped face.

That is why I supported fully static builds (4, Insightful)

jellomizer (103300) | about a year ago | (#42217929)

While I know of the advantages that Linked libraries give, such as being to update a huge set of programs at once, Allowing us coders to change how programs operate by changing the library source. However in the terms of Distributing software for different distributions it becomes a nightmare for the author. Because they can only really test a small percentage of these distributions, and who know if that unknown distribution uses that library or has the library requires to install it...

Systems like APT do a wonderful job of solving the problem for us. But not all distributions use APT and/or they may have a different set of repositories.

Re:That is why I supported fully static builds (4, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#42217967)

So you promise to update your application forever whenever a problem with such a library is found?

Re:That is why I supported fully static builds (4, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | about a year ago | (#42218051)

That's the main reason Debian is against applications shipping their own static versions of libraries instead of using the system library, because it requires everyone be on top of updating, especially for security issues. If everyone links with the Debian libfoo, then if there's a security issue they can just update it. But if some projects have their own local copy of libfoo in their git tree, then you're hoping the upstream maintainer is going to promptly re-sync it. Often that doesn't happen: projects sometimes ship ancient internal versions of libraries where they just did a cp -r into their own project tree years ago and never kept up with updates. So Debian expends considerable effort ripping out these local forks.

Re:That is why I supported fully static builds (2)

Marxdot (2699183) | about a year ago | (#42218081)

So you promise to personally fix problems for developers every time shared linking is the cause?

Re:That is why I supported fully static builds (5, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#42218305)

You know what fixes both of those issues?
FREE software. Then the code can be fixed even after the original developer is long gone.

Updates sometimes break things ... (4, Informative)

perpenso (1613749) | about a year ago | (#42218749)

So you promise to update your application forever whenever a problem with such a library is found?

Do you promise not to complain when an update to the library breaks the game? Or when the game fails to run on your favored niche distro?

Re:That is why I supported fully static builds (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218075)

What about the GPL? If you statically link a GPL library to your code, I believe you must release source code for the whole shebang. Game developers aren't going to go for that.

Re:That is why I supported fully static builds (3, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#42218095)

Then simply tell the user to run ldd against the game binary and then fend for themselves.

If you run something that doesn't hold your hand, then that's a conscious choice that you've made. It's completely reasonable for Valve to treat you accordingly and assume that you can fend for yourself and understand the related instructions.

Or you could just go the "windows style installer" route and stop acting like a stupid hysterical ninny pretending that these kinds of tools for Linux haven't existed for years and years already.

Re:That is why I supported fully static builds (1)

mrvan (973822) | about a year ago | (#42218167)

Totally off topic, but actually I think the main problem with APT is not the linking, they do solve that wonderfully; and the few times that I need something that is not (yet) available from apt I can just compile myself.

What I do find problematic is the interface of apt with language-specific library repositories. Eg pip for python, cran for R. I generally want to use those repositories since they are the de facto standard in those communities, but (1) that gives clashes if some other apt package requires something that I installed using pip, leading to multiple copies and version problems, and (2) the library repos can't specify "out-of-language" requirements, e.g. the libxml for some python library that binds to that lib. That means that I have to try installing via pip/cran/..., see what is missing, apt-get install those libs, and then try installing again.

Does anyone have a good solution for that?

Re:That is why I supported fully static builds (1)

wed128 (722152) | about a year ago | (#42218309)

you could in theory make .debs that just contain scripts to pip or cran or cpan or whatever...

that's one solution.

mixed feelings (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218059)

I'll be signing up as soon as it becomes available just to show some Linux support love. But, I won't actually install it because of the D.R.M. in Steam.

Got Beta invite ... for Debian (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218061)

I just got my beta invite yesterday -after specifying I was on Debian Sid (I never expected an invite since I'm not using Ubuntu). Will fiddle with it and get it running today, I'll definitely buy a few games just because.

Seems like they are close to releasing.

Someone is misunderstanding... (4, Informative)

bmo (77928) | about a year ago | (#42218071)

... what "fully updated" means. It certainly sounds like the author thinks that the latest distro and kernel is what's recommended.

It's not.

>Ubuntu 12.04

Valve is recommending the LTS and not 12.10, as well they should. Recommending the latest kernel and distro is asking for nothing but pain for everybody involved.

As far as the hardware recommendations go, they're not outrageous either.

--
BMO

Year of the Linux Desktop (5, Interesting)

masternerdguy (2468142) | about a year ago | (#42218109)

The way I see it, this entire situation is hilarious. Us Linux people have been wanting something like this to happen for, well, forever, and it is finally happening. The lack of serious gaming on Linux has been one of the things holding it back on the desktop market. Now that we're finally getting that, and a serious contender to the Windows gaming hegemony is present, all anyone can do is cry and scream "not good enough dammit not good enough" because not every Steam title ever made will be available on release. I bet if the year of the linux desktop ever happens /. will be the first one to criticize it.

Re:Year of the Linux Desktop (3, Funny)

gman003 (1693318) | about a year ago | (#42218369)

See, by the time of the Year of the Linux Desktop, Linux will be too mainstream. We'll have all switched to some more "trendy" or "underground" OS. Possibly one of the BSDs, or maybe OS/2 if it's "retro" enough, but possibly some yet-to-be-written OS. HURD, perhaps?

Re:Year of the Linux Desktop (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218421)

By the time HURD works, we'll have colonized thousands of planets.

Amnesia multi platform not really surprising (3, Interesting)

mrvan (973822) | about a year ago | (#42218111)

The linked article shows how Amnesia (which is an excellent game, btw, at least part 1 is) will be supported on different platforms, but I'm pretty sure Amnesia already runs on those platforms. So it seems to me that Valve is supporting ubuntu, but will list other OS'es that happen to be supported by the (original) publisher?

Of course this is all deduction from rumors and two screenshots, so take cum grano salis....

Ubuntu minus the bad decisions. (4, Interesting)

AftanGustur (7715) | about a year ago | (#42218157)

I surely hope Linux Mint catches on,, it is basically Ubuntu minus the bad decisions Canonical has made recently.

Re:Ubuntu minus the bad decisions. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218729)

Catches on? Mint is more popular than Ubuntu and is the current distro of choice. Replacing Ubuntu because of their stupidity.

Even the Mint desktop alternatives are at the top places. Replacing Unity, GNOME3, etc.

Basically, both Ubuntu and GNOME screwed up royally by not listening to their users and cramming insane and stupid design ideas down everyone's throat. Bye bye Ubuntu and GNOME! You are on your way to becoming the next XFree86, Sodipodi, etc. and every other project where the maintainers just went batshit insane for some reason.

No DirectX, useless (0)

Dunge (922521) | about a year ago | (#42218189)

Most existing games won't update to support OpenGL, and newer games developers won't want to do additional work to do it either. DirectX development is still the easiest.

Re:No DirectX, useless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218255)

Hello Wine.

It's pretty simple, really (4, Interesting)

mcrbids (148650) | about a year ago | (#42218211)

More choices typically work out better for consumers. Sure, you can game on your WinPC, or OSX, or your Dreamcast or XBox or whatever, but arguing that enabling Linux gaming is a bad idea is terribly short sighted. More choices = more competition = better value for consumers.

I, for one, will likely sign up for steam/Linux and make sure to buy a game or three to see how it goes as I support this development. I sincerely hope Valve gets plenty rich doing this as it finally proves a business model that Loki Games (remember them?) couldn't do a decade or so ago. (I bought all their games)

Re:It's pretty simple, really (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218469)

More choices are bad for consumers. Consumers aren't intelligent enough to make informed choices in computing so they'll get a crappy experience. Think of all the poor people who buy shitty Chinese android tablets. If they'd bought an iPad they'd be having a better quality of life. More choice == more chance of consumer disappointing. Its better to have one or two at most great options than a bunch of mediocre ones and some great ones that are more expensive. Think of it this way, you wouldn't make your Grandma change her own transmission would you?

Re:It's pretty simple, really (1)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#42218769)

Except the market isn't split between shitty Chinese tablets and iPads.

Furthermore, this is 2012. You don't need to go into any purchase blind. You can check around and see if a device is all of that.

That includes doorstop computers like Macs.

Only a blithering Apple fanboy would equate consumer product selection with automotive repairs.

Will they be adding Debian as a supported distro? (1)

jez9999 (618189) | about a year ago | (#42218249)

Or is the Debian open philosophy just too incompatible with the idea of Linux gaming?

Re:Will they be adding Debian as a supported distr (1)

Iswandulla (1536145) | about a year ago | (#42218489)

Serriously? FFS "Or is the Debian open philosophy just too incompatible with the idea of Linux gaming?" Quit acting like nerd complaining that the library only had DC and YOU only like Marvel. Be happy that they have comics there in the first place. Maybe they will expand in to that distro, give it some time.. maybe go back to making your "2013 will be the year of linux!" shirts

Re:Will they be adding Debian as a supported distr (1)

jez9999 (618189) | about a year ago | (#42218697)

I'm not complaining, just asking a question.

Re:Will they be adding Debian as a supported distr (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218711)

Glen Beck also "is just asking questions"

Uneducated Virtualization Suggestion (4, Interesting)

a-zarkon! (1030790) | about a year ago | (#42218279)

Maybe this is how it already works - but if it isn't here's an avenue I would investigate:

Shouldn't it be possible for Steam to build a hypervisor type environment? If they have a common hypervisor they port the game once to run in that environment. Then all they need to do is get their hypervisor running on Windows, *NIX, MAC, whatever.

There's definitely some additional processing overhead on this, but it seems that it would be a very efficient model once you have the hypervisor built. I would think you could probably push the specs/API/etc to the game publishers and have the game developer team adopt their game to the platform.

I don't know anything about how Steam works under the covers so maybe they're already doing this. I'm curious, but not enough to do the legwork.

Re:Uneducated Virtualization Suggestion (4, Informative)

masternerdguy (2468142) | about a year ago | (#42218367)

This technology already exists in the form of Java. Java solved this exact problem in 1997 but despite massive improvements Java is still about 1.5x to 2x slower than native code (it used to be 5-10x slower, so they've really done some work!) which doesn't hurt most applications but the overhead makes it less attractive for game development.

Re:Uneducated Virtualization Suggestion (1)

a-zarkon! (1030790) | about a year ago | (#42218401)

*slaps head* Yep. Java should do it, but you're also dead on with respect to the slowness.

Re:Uneducated Virtualization Suggestion (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218771)

Any interpreted language would do it, but since they are all run as a program being read and executed by another program, performance loss is inevitable. I think Java is the only one that compiles to a foreign binary and lets the VM run the binary, but there is no reason any other interpreted language could not be adapted to have a similarly obfuscated deliverable form. (I've yet to open a swf in a text editor, but those might be partially compiled as well)

If the gulf between game complexity and hardware capability continues to grow, it may become feasible to offer more serious games on interpreted platforms.

Re:Uneducated Virtualization Suggestion (4, Insightful)

Bieeanda (961632) | about a year ago | (#42218641)

The only thing Valve does with other people's games is make sure the code gets from their servers to your box. That's all. They don't port, and they don't patch until and unless the publisher provides them with a patch to download from Steam's servers too.

Publishers are not going to bite at something that demands they keep specific-distributor-only builds around just so Valve can build some clunky hypervisor. The only segment of PC gaming that might be worth the effort are sports titles, and EA pretty much has those sewn up tighter than a drum.

Sad (1)

hduff (570443) | about a year ago | (#42218541)

Sad to see that they are not being distro-agnostic and standards-compliant. That would solve many, many problems.

Opened up the Linux Trial (1)

RichMan (8097) | about a year ago | (#42218547)

They opened up the trial and invited more people yesterday. I got my invite.
I have been playing games on Linux for years.

Year of the Linux Desktop? (1)

waddleman (1230926) | about a year ago | (#42218603)

I kid, I kid. But this in pretty cool.

Of course this day is brought down by RMS [slashdot.org]

Now if only there was theme to make Unity look like Pinterest [pinterest.com] I wouldn't have to convince my wife that Linux was better, she would just know.

Serious Sam 3 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42218721)

I'm not affiliated, but I just want to say that Serious Sam 3 was well worth the ten dollars I spent with it on sale. It is a lot of mindless fun, and it is apparent that the team really listens to the players, with this Linux support and the split screen coop on the PC version also.

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