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Cedega and Linux Games

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 7 years ago | from the pay-and-pray-gaming dept.

422

Linux.com's Stefan Vrabie has a look at the state of Transgaming's Cedega, which some claim to be the best current offering for running Windows games under Linux. While it may be better than nothing, the author still puts this solidly under the "plug and pray" column with the biggest drawback being the amount of fiddling required to make it work. From the article: "Cedega may not be the answer to games under Linux, but it's better than not being able to play at all, until gaming companies notice Linux users as a market and release games for Linux." Linux.com and Slashdot.org are both owned by OSTG.

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No games? (5, Interesting)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821231)

I bought Neverwinter Nights Saturday, and I'm thoroughly enjoying it.

With the Diamond Edition ($30 at Best Buy), you get both expansion packs, and you can follow some online directions [bioware.com] to install to Linux without passing through Windows.

I also bought Return to Castle Wolfenstein a while back. That was good, too.

Oh, and there's DOOM, DOOM ][, Quake, Quake 2, Quake 3, several versions of Unreal...

If you'll go the Open Source route, there's DarkPlaces [icculus.org] , Cube [cubeengine.com] , Duke Nukem 3d [icculus.org] (engine, anyway. You'll still need the gamedata.

Uhm...no games? How about, no hyperadvertised games?

Re:No games? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821345)

I've had my eye on this one and online it actually says it's 20 bucks [bestbuy.com] .

Either way, it's nice to have such things that are ported directly to Linux.

In the holy wars of whether WINE benefits the Linux community or not, I think it hurts more than it harms. If you want to game with your PC, dual boot...you know, with that OS your machine came with. If you want to use Linux, convince yourself to use only native games. If you REALLY REALLY want to game, get yourself an XBox.

Re:No games? (1)

G Morgan (979144) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821402)

Neverwinter is a great game with the expansion packs. The original campaign was a bit so-so* but the second expansion was fantastic.

*it was good but not as good as HOTU

Re:No games? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821456)



Uhm...no games? How about, no hyperadvertised games?


Uhm...no games? How about, no contemporary games.

Every semi-serious, hell every casual PC gamer has moved beyond all your listed games games years ago. You didn't present an argument for Linux gaming, you presented one against it.



Re:No games? (5, Informative)

gormanly (134067) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821504)

  • Doom III (plus the Resurrection of Evil Expansion Pack)
  • Quake 4
  • Unreal Tournament 2004

We all know that Linux isn't a platform for gamers, but still there are a few games for GNU/Linux.

Re:No games? (1)

laffer1 (701823) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821602)

True, and there are more games for Mac OS. So next time someone wants to make a mac joke, remember its windows only for games. :(

I hope we can get games ported to serveral platforms. I love different operating systems and it would be nice to give the people variety. Also don't forget java games usually work on other operating systems as well.

Re:No games? (4, Insightful)

grumbel (592662) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821570)

No games?
Well, yes, you are right there are not "no games" under Linux, the throuble is there are only very few games under Linux. All the games you list are multiple years old, sometimes even a decade, and half of them happens to be done by id which is one of the very few Linux friendly game companies around. And the rest of the games kind of got more or less crippeled on its way (NWN came out half a year late, no editor, some throuble with videos, etc. when I remember correctly).

So in the end, yes, there are games on Linux, however in five years you get as much new releases under Linux as you see in the Windows world in a week or two, which really brings the state of Linux games very close to "no games". The sad thing is that it hasn't really gotten any better, five years ago we where stuck with a few first person shooters, today we still are, just with a few updated ones.

Re:No games? (3, Interesting)

narooze (845310) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821610)

You're forgetting Doom 3. Not only are there games for Linux, it's not uncommon that the hardware requirements are lower due to better hardware utilization. Doom 3 for example, sported official hardware requirements only 2/3 as high for Linux compared to for Windows.

Forget Halo! (1, Informative)

Sixtyten (991538) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821241)

I would rather play Tuxracer any day of the week, thank you very much.

Re:Forget Halo! (1)

El Torico (732160) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821518)

Hell, who needs games when you can rant on slashdot? I'm getting a truckload of entertainment on this subject alone, and I have mod points today too. Woo-hoo!

Yes, I have had a few drinks.

Re:Forget Halo! (1)

kbielefe (606566) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821766)

You'll probably be undermodded, but you bring up a good point. The games that are included in most Linux distributions are way better than most of the free games for Windows. People like my wife and myself, who enjoy the simple gameplay of games like tuxracer, frozen bubble, clowns, pioneers, and the like will find Linux a superior platform.

There are over 700 games included in my Linux distribution (gentoo). Of course, a lot of them are not worth a second look, at least by adults, but I still discover a gem every once in a while that I didn't even know existed.

I look forward to seeing what my daughter will like when she gets old enough. I didn't have any video games at all until I was 12, and then it was only one TRS-80 game until college. I would have done almost anything to have the selection of games that she will have.

As for the more modern games, that's why I have a TV dedicated to video editing and an Xbox.

Well duh (3, Insightful)

cyber-vandal (148830) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821247)

why anyone would want to run Doom through Cedega, when ID Software offers a Linux binary for Doom (which needless to say runs better since it's native), is a good question.

If every software company was as generous as ID then Cedega wouldn't be required now would it?

Re:Well duh (1)

size1one (630807) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821342)

if every software company was as generous as ID then Cedega wouldn't be required now would it?

unfortunatly the opposite to that is close enough for most companies: If Cedega lets users play games on linux then we don't have to do the work.

Re:Well duh (1)

diegocgteleline.es (653730) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821553)

Well, many games use DirectX (direct3d) these days. So, other games may open their code, but if they user directx...you won't be able to compile them under linux. And I don't know if opengl is somewhat better or worse, but directx seems to work, and you can't blame companies for using something that works.

Cedega (wine & friends) are the one opensource directx implementation out there. The opensource world needs a opensource directx implementation, just like it has a opensource smb implementation (samba) or a opensource ntfs driver. So cedega & wine are still neccesary even with opensource-friendly companies.

Re:Well duh (1)

Simon80 (874052) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821619)

well, if a company really wanted to write something cross-platform, they wouldn't use something like DX, which is mostly locked to a single platform, even if it gets reimplemented on other platforms.

Re:Well duh (1)

Cyno (85911) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821573)

I remember running Doom on Linux back in 1996 at 320x240 on an unsupported trident card under XFree86 with an 8-bit color palette that got real ugly if I moved the mouse out of the window area, which was mostly full screen. It was aweful, but better than nothing. 486 DX2 66, at least 8MB of RAM, probably 16. I bet it would run better now..

Re:Well duh (1)

Simon80 (874052) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821596)

Id isn't just generous, their games are also well made. Compare q3a to UT. Q3a works both in WINE and natively, and still works today, except for alsa issues, and alsa didn't exist when q3a came out. I haven't tried their products in WINE, so I can't say that they work in it first hand, but it's reported in TFA, and in other places as well. UT doesn't work on either platform, Windows or Linux, on today's hardware. The fact that Id's windows clients tend to work well in WINE is probably not a coincidence. It is more likely a result of them trying to write portable code so that the game would run on both platforms. Then they GPL the quake III engine after 6 years or so and now we have q3a running on windows PDAs and such. Plus it's still being used in the CPL as of this year.

Note that I don't mean to bash UT, though, I like UT2004, it's just that q3a is a shining example of what game engines should aspire to be like, in my opinion. It starts up quickly, is cross-platform, performs well, looks good, and the game itself is very fun to play.

Linux.com and Slashdot.org are both owned by OSTG. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821249)

Linux.com and Slashdot.org are both owned by OSTG.

Yes, thank you for reminding us.

Cedega is produced by scum (-1, Flamebait)

scenestar (828656) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821263)

UHm, cedega is know to freeload on the wine project.

Don't pay for it, warez it.

Re:Cedega is produced by scum (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821328)

I'd almost agree, but it is better to boycott them and support wine. When the cedega guys posted a rant about piracy on their front website it completely killed any interest I had in their product. The GNU/Linux community is about sharing software and knowledge, and they go ranting about piracy in the GNU/Linux community of all places?! They are unhelpful and even hostile to the free software community. Don't give them your support.

Re:Cedega is produced by scum (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821579)

I'd almost agree, but it is better to boycott them and support wine. When the cedega guys posted a rant about piracy on their front website it completely killed any interest I had in their product. The GNU/Linux community is about sharing software and knowledge, and they go ranting about piracy in the GNU/Linux community of all places?! They are unhelpful and even hostile to the free software community. Don't give them your support.


Don't worry about it, I'll buy a second license to compensate for your dickheadedness.

Re:Cedega is produced by scum (5, Insightful)

madcow_bg (969477) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821437)

You should not that easily mod the parent troll.
Actually, some time ago WINE was under BSD license, that permitted proprietary modifications. After WINE was forked to WineX, then renamed to Cedega and closed their source, the WINE developers changed the license to GPL so future "freeloaders" are not allowed.

Now Cedega are going backwards because they cannot use the new WINE code. While WINE is going forward in the compatibility for things like DX9, the rest of the APIs in Windows, all Cedega developers are doing is trying to make it compatible with the latest and greatest of the protection schemes for CDs like SafeCD and such... Good for games, but for how long?

Re:Cedega is produced by scum (4, Informative)

Mad Merlin (837387) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821547)

Now Cedega are going backwards because they cannot use the new WINE code.

They can actually, and do still. Only a month or two ago they took several dlls from vanilla Wine (they, of course, are still licensed under the LGPL, not the regular Cedega license).

Furthermore, Cedega is generally full of hacks to make specific games work, which is good in the short run, but bad in the long run. This is especially showing now, as in many ways, vanilla Wine has better D3D support than Cedega. Expect this gap to continue to widen as time passes. There may be a point where Cedega starts using vanilla Wine's D3D implementation too.

Re:Cedega is produced by scum (1)

madcow_bg (969477) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821607)

> They can actually, and do still. Only a month or two ago they took several dlls from vanilla Wine (they, of course, are still licensed under the LGPL, not the regular Cedega license).
Yes, my mistake, I meant to say that they cannot modify the code of the dlls and sell them without releasing the source code. That won't be to their advantage.

> Furthermore, Cedega is generally full of hacks to make specific games work, which is good in the short run, but bad in the long run. This is especially showing now, as in many ways, vanilla Wine has better D3D support than Cedega. Expect this gap to continue to widen as time passes. There may be a point where Cedega starts using vanilla Wine's D3D implementation too.
Exactly. When that comes everyone will be able to use D3D, the only proprietary things will remain the various CD protections, which can be easily circumvented by simple cracks. Note that in most of the countries it is not illegal to use cracks if you have the original game.

Re:Cedega is produced by scum (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821572)

On top of the licensing, they seem to be actively promoting thier junk over native Linux ports.

Why on earth do they have Unreal Tournament 2004 [transgaming.org] listed on their games database as playable under cedega?

UT2004 has a native port because Epic was good enough to pay to get the port done. This is also the case with several other native linux games.

Transgaming are scum, no doubt.

Pay and pray (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821266)

from the pay-and-pray-gaming dept
Ah, Transgaming. So zealous in their threats to change their licensing if anyone tries to package their app and put it into a repo. Little do they know that the world of closed-source software has its own repos [thepiratebay.org] .

Is there a market? (4, Interesting)

WombatDeath (681651) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821267)

Or rather, a viable one?

That's not a rhetorical question. I have no idea how easy it is to make a game compatible with both Windows and Linux but I assume that it's a bit more complicated than changing backslashes to forward slashes. I also don't know how big the market is for Linux games but I doubt it's huge. If it takes an extra, say, 20% longer to make a game Linux-compatible I'm not surprised that it doesn't happen more often.

On the other hand perhaps it's just lazy design. I'd be interested to hear from anyone who doesn't share my ignorance.

Re:Is there a market? (2, Interesting)

Dionysus (12737) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821371)

Probably not. Loki [lokigames.com] thougth there was a marked and ported some games over to Linux (I bought the SimCity version). They closed shop after three years. Then again, the marked might be a little different now from the way it was four years ago (lots of newbie distros, like Ubuntu, Xandros, Linspire etc, that have brought in non-developers to Linux)

Re:Is there a market? (4, Interesting)

StormReaver (59959) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821736)

"Loki thougth[sic] there was a marked and ported some games over to Linux (I bought the SimCity version). They closed shop after three years."

Loki didn't close shop for lack of a sustainable market. Loki closed up shop because the company president and his wife were draining the company coffers for personal use.

Re:Is there a market? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821403)

Loki was quite successful at porting games to Linux many years back. They went under for business/management reasons, not due to a lack of sales. It should be noted that the Linux market is clearly far larger today. I don't know whether it could support a large first-party developer who only makes Linux games (very doubtful, in fact) but the cost of entry to the Linux market for Windows devs is fairly low. Write your game to use OpenGL rather than DirectX, and you're halfway there. Cross-platform is easy to do if you plan on it from the get-go. It may be very difficult to bolt on as an afterthought, though.
  The main reason you don't see more cross-platform games, though, I think has to do solely with upper management. They imagine a huge support pricetag for a small market. Loki showed that that's not really the case, but management is timid and easily frightened.

Speaking as a Game Marketer and Linux User... (4, Interesting)

weasello (881450) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821285)

I find it extremely difficult to justify porting or designing a game for Mac - and definately not profitable. When it's done it's usually an investment; garnering support for future releases or 'making a name' in the Mac community. Considering Linux is even smaller... The numbers just don't add up yet. It isn't really about market penetration or percentages, it's about pure numbers. How many Linux machines are on the planet; of those how many are used in a home-use desktop fashion; of those how many are willing to spend $40-60 on a game; and of those who would be willing to buy this particular game.

Re:Speaking as a Game Marketer and Linux User... (1)

not already in use (972294) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821336)

Porting games to Mac just got a whole lot easier now that they've switched to intel. Porting games to Mac isn't such a bad idea now that their market share is growing and Vista is having all sorts of issues.

Re:Speaking as a Game Marketer and Linux User... (1)

Ant P. (974313) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821355)

Alright, since you're a "game marketer" could you tell us how using free GL libraries and doing a two-hour recompile costs more than a DX9 SDK?

Re:Speaking as a Game Marketer and Linux User... (1)

Rezonant (775417) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821380)

Simple: Time is money, and the DX9 SDK is free to download and use for everyone.

Re:Speaking as a Game Marketer and Linux User... (5, Informative)

weasello (881450) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821417)

I'm not a developer, all I see are bottom-line numbers. Hiring a QA team and a support team for Linux is probably two of the biggest cost factors. it is quite simply adding up all the associated costs with:

releasing, supporting, marketing, testing, and (rarely) developing something for a platform a developer is not familiar with (and quite frankly, scared of)..

Versus...

Potential sales to a platform comprising largely of a "free" atmosphere (that I enjoy myself), of limited and wide distribution (there's no 'region' that could be targeted), with a poor track record of profit for game releases.

Two ways to bring gaming to Linux are to (a) reduce costs (such as making smaller scale, indy-style games), or (b) waiting the Linux community grow to a size where potential profits outweight the potential costs (which could be caused by (A)).

Re:Speaking as a Game Marketer and Linux User... (3, Interesting)

G Morgan (979144) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821473)

It could be done via the current methods of releasing a binary online and offering no official support. You can make clear that the game is Windows only officially. Linux users will support each other, we're good generally at making up for companies that give no support so companies that give the tiniest amount (in terms of releasing a patch 'as is') would bring us half way there to begin with. The linux mentality is do it yourself and if its possible the Linux community would help make it happen.

You'll probably find Linux users will write their own installation script if you don't provide one and then there is no problem.

From the development point of view theres no disadvantage to using SDL over DX apart from maybe devs have more experience with the MS platform (it's a rare one that has no SDL experience though, its usually the first port of call).

Another way of looking at it is this, plan for portability even if you have no intention of a Linux release. It costs nothing more to write portable code if you plan correctly and you at least then have the option. Then if a million Linux users cry "this game is SDL please port it" then you can judge the market from there.

Re:Speaking as a Game Marketer and Linux User... (1)

El Torico (732160) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821463)

Then don't try selling anything that requires XP or Vista to me. By the way, "making a name" is also called "Building Brand Recognition" in Marketing speak. Use that catchy phrase when you speak to the Marketing Droids and PHBs, not simple phrases that normal people use.

What the hell do you mean "It isn't really about market penetration or percentages"? Market Penetration is a growth strategy, so that inane statement shows that your company really don't want to try to expand business.

Re:Speaking as a Game Marketer and Linux User... (1)

walnutmon (988223) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821516)

Mac may be reasonable soon, because they are getting more users, and they can run windows, and run on Intel.

Linux may never be reasonable. What company wants to go through all the added work, for little profit, and a very good chance that their games will just be pirated anyways. Think about who uses Linux at home, not exactly the group EA is going to see as being very profitable.

If you are a gamer, get Windows. You don't have to like everything about an Op system to run games on it. Seriously, it costs 100 dollars, and makes gaming easy.

Speaking as a game developer... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821594)

You don't know wtf you are talking about. Ask Carmack how much extra time was required to make any of id's games portable. It takes almost no time at all, if you simply use portable libraries. Its only a problem to support non-windows OSs if you are a dumbass and use directx.

Re:Speaking as a game developer... (1)

laffer1 (701823) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821658)

Ok that is a stretch. id outsources to Aspyr for their Mac ports. The linux version is done primarily as a dedicated server platform. It makes their games popular since you can run them on a reliable server platform.

Also the code is still linux/mac/windows centric. Try compiling the SDK for one of their games on FreeBSD for example. It won't get that far. I've tried this with enemy territory. Obviously I don't have the whole engine, but it was simply a curiosity. Of course FreeBSD wasn't a target platform, but it also shows the code isn't automatically portable to anything without some work.

I applaud id for their linux and Mac releases. Enemy Territory is still my favorite game and I can't wait for quake wars.

Re:Speaking as a Game Marketer and Linux User... (4, Insightful)

nukem996 (624036) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821678)

Ive done a little game programming and what ive always wondered is why game developers cannt develop their games with OpenGL, OpenAL, and SDL to allow maximum portability. If coded using these libraries then its very simple to port to Linux Mac, Windows, PS 1, PS 2, Gamecube, and many more platforms. By having your game availible on Win Mac and Linux you'll not only make your customers happy but more people will buy. I know I for one am much more likly to buy a game if there is a native Linux port then if there isnt. As for paying for support why not just do what id software does and release the game binaries for Linux but say that there is no support availible, only bug reports.

No games? (1)

kneppercr (947840) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821299)

Last I checked, Unreal Tournament ran under linux... And so do most Infogrames games. most notable being Darwinia and Uplink. (Yes I like Uplink, cheesy as it may be) The problem isn't no games, it's that linux is a FUNCTIONAL operating system. It is meant for office use and for stable, spyware-free home connectivity. Much like Mac OS. You want awesome easy to use graphics and video editing/processing? I'd go Mac. You want a super stable server or a secure way to go online? Linux may be your answer. Windows? Easy for games. Very easy. Not many flavors of Windows really, just different layers all stacked on one another. Companies have a lot of practice making Windows games, and thats cool. But just like I don't expect or demand Windows to be secure, I do not demand Linux and Mac to be vigilant about plug and play, which many games rely on.

Re:No games? (1)

suparjerk (784861) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821423)

> The problem isn't no games, it's that linux is a FUNCTIONAL operating system. It is meant for office use and for stable, spyware-free home connectivity.

That's exactly what the linux community is trying to change. I agree with you in that MacOS is for multimedia, Windows is for gaming, and Linux is currently for productivity and stability. Linux is also supposed to be versatile and customizable and progressive, and I think it's silly to dismiss the idea of gaming on Linux because "it's not meant for gaming".

Eagerly awaiting (4, Insightful)

ZorbaTHut (126196) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821306)

If Cedega and Wine could run all the Windows games I play, and the few apps I depend on that don't have Linux ports, I would literally switch to Linux tomorrow.

If only.

Re:Eagerly awaiting (1)

suparjerk (784861) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821366)

Just out of pure curiosity, what games / apps do you depend on?

Re:Eagerly awaiting (1)

ZorbaTHut (126196) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821545)

For apps, the biggest missing one is Trillian. I really hate Gaim and nothing else works very well. I also need a good high-speed RDP-like system - I've heard FreeNX is good but it seems to be difficult to set up for "connect to an already-running session". I don't even know if it's possible to do that and have 3d acceleration still work. I can't find much documentation online.

For games, you can't go very far away from "everything runs" and have it still be acceptable. Right now, ignoring console games, I'm occasionally playing Civ4, Oblivion, Galactic Civilizations II, and Half-Life 2. Recently, that list has included Space Cowboy, Armadillo Run, FarCry, The Sims 2, Battlefield 2, City of Heroes, Rise of Legends, Cave Story, Oasis, and Darwinia.

Basically, my main computer does very little besides development and games. Development isn't a problem. Games are. If Cedega can't run "all games" it's not compatible enough for me to use it yet.

Yeah, that's a tall order, but that's what I need. Computers are, to me, tools, and I'm not about to throw away a working tool for a non-working one. 'Course, I'll gladly throw out a working one for one that works better. Linux just isn't, for me, at the "better than Windows" stage yet.

Re:Eagerly awaiting (1)

suparjerk (784861) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821624)

Understood. As far as RDP goes, it's quite simple to set a VNC server up attached to your already-running session. I am doing so with Ubuntu Dapper. I can't remember exactly how I did it, but it was simple enough that I could find out how with a couple google queries and 5 minutes. Try it. If you want 3d acceleration over VNC or RDP, though, I think you're out of luck. I don't think anything like that exists, because I don't think it's feasible. I could be wrong, though.

Re:Eagerly awaiting (1)

ZorbaTHut (126196) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821705)

One of the methods I saw for making that working was to run all your normal sessions through NX itself. I'm not really sure what *that* would do to 3d acceleration. I don't insist on being able to do 3d acceleration remotely, but I would like to be able to do 3d acceleration locally and connect to an existing session remotely.

I managed to find ways to set up VNC to do what I wanted easily, and NX without being able to do what I wanted easily. It's that intersection that's the problem. VNC is dog-slow compared to RDP. Ah well.

Cedega is a step in the right direction (4, Insightful)

suparjerk (784861) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821313)

Addressing those who say that "Cedega isn't encouraging gaming companies to develop games for Linux", as the article puts it.... you're somewhat right. It's not directly encouraging companies to make Linux games, but it is a step in the right direction.
 
I used to be constantly rebooting back and forth between Ubuntu and Windows XP as I switched between playing games (XP) and doing everything else (Ubuntu). Thanks to Cedega, I can now spend almost all of my time in Linux, as Cedega emulates nearly everything I want to play, and does so with minimal problems. I'm just about ready to give Windows a kick to the face and abandon it permanently. In my case, thanks to Cedega, there's now one more almost-purely-linux gamer and one less Windows gamer. Now that I game under linux instead of in Windows, companies do have more incentive to make linux ports of their games.

Re:Cedega is a step in the right direction (1)

tashpool (919935) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821464)

The game companies could care less to use cross platform tools if you are just going to use Cedega on Linux. They still sold a copy of the game to a different OS with less effort. Now they don't have to support you or the game, and when you get a problem in Cedega, it's just hours of fun trying to figure it out for us novices.

There really is no exscuse to not be using cross platform tools and a selling the rights to companies like Aspyr to get games on multiple platforms. And yes, I am looking directly at Atari and how they are trying to take away my beloved NWN2.

Re:Cedega is a step in the right direction (1)

suparjerk (784861) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821510)

I'm not sure you got my point, which was ...

Thanks to Cedega/wine, I am now primarily a linux user and not a Windows user, which means I'm almost certainly not going to buy any future games unless I know they will work under linux. I imagine (and hope) a mass of other cases like mine will encourage companies to develop for linux.

Re:Cedega is a step in the right direction (1)

G Morgan (979144) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821492)

I think proving the market is more important than technical issues at the moment. If Cedega/Wine/Xover reaches a reasonable level it will still be the case that SDL games will run better than DX games (most SDL games run well in them now). So it will still encourage people to go SDL and that will eventually mean more native ports anyway.

So a limited Wine facility to improve the position is a great first step as long as it never becomes perfect.

My computer has the Hz, why do I need the MS? (1)

w33t (978574) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821334)

It really peeves me that the linux gaming scene is so underdeveloped.

However, on the one hand I can understand. Games are arguably the most sophisticated and difficult computer programs to create.

But on the other hand I just can't stomach the fact that I pay $2k for a nice system, but I must have windows to play my games. It's like all those FLOPS from my CPU and video card are useless unless I am beholden to the software trickery of direct-x.

Now I hear rumors that future games will require vista for play and that newer direct-x releases will only install on vista.

It's so artificial to me. I mean, I know that direct-x's APIs allow for ease of development and speedier time to market, as well as giving a simpler interface to modern video card's best features.

But the hardware is there!

why does the underlying OS matter so much when the raw hardware processing power is right there!?

Re:My computer has the Hz, why do I need the MS? (1)

El Torico (732160) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821385)

w33t, I agree entirely. Here's a message to the Game Developers, I WILL NOT PURCHASE ANY GAMES THAT DON'T RUN NATIVELY ON LINUX!
Of course, if I find a game in the bargain bin that runs on Win2K, I will consider it. Either way, they aren't making top dollar (pound, euro, yen, etc.) off of me.

Re:My computer has the Hz, why do I need the MS? (1)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821405)

I don't think they'll lose any sleep over you

Re:My computer has the Hz, why do I need the MS? (1)

G Morgan (979144) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821523)

Amazing I've heard that comment on at least a couple of thousand occassions. How many users does a games company lose sleep over. Given that most games companies are borderline in terms of profit I would have thought that any extra sales would be appreciated.

Re:My computer has the Hz, why do I need the MS? (1)

laffer1 (701823) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821724)

but those few sales won't pay for linux programmers, testers, tech support and any other costs. Then we get into the issue of distros. What distros should they officially support? Redhat? Fedora? Suse? Gentoo? Ubuntu?

Its not like developing for the mac even. Way too many variables. We need standards in linux and bsd if we want to attract closed source software. Plus some of you need to get over your GNU love and just accept closed source software until the community is ready to make games and other software open sourced at the same levels.

Re:My computer has the Hz, why do I need the MS? (1)

Tim Browse (9263) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821554)

I'm a games developer, and I can confirm that I'm not losing any sleep over this.

Re:My computer has the Hz, why do I need the MS? (1)

LaughingCoder (914424) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821410)

But on the other hand I just can't stomach the fact that I pay $2k for a nice system, but I must have windows to play my games.

Why do you care what OS is underneath? Your nice $2K machine came with Windows, right? And it plays all your games out of the box, right? So what's the problem? Or is this some sort of irrational religious thing?

It's so artificial to me. I mean, I know that direct-x's APIs allow for ease of development and speedier time to market, as well as giving a simpler interface to modern video card's best features.

But the hardware is there!


You seem to understand something about what it takes to develop games, but apparently you have no clue what it takes to do that development at the level required for commercial (ie, something people will pay for) quality. Each new platform is a huge undertaking. And that's not just in coding, it's in test, distribution, and support. No company that wants to stay in business is going to take on that expense for a small market.

Anyone? (2, Funny)

tonyr1988 (962108) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821368)

Could anyone give me the link to the .torrent of Cedega?

All I can find is this [transgaming.org] pesky page.

Linux is a game! (3, Funny)

corychristison (951993) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821413)

With it's incredibly advanced architecture, linux is a game! Try rolling your own Linux install, that alone will eat up plenty of time. And if you are anything like me or possibly a lot of sysadmins here, it is fun, too. ;-)

Write an engine for both? (1)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821415)

Why not just make the original game's engine workable on all OSes,get out of this "Direct X part 2383739" bullshit and make one which every OS can use in some form. It may require a lot of work but your market would increase in the future if only because the OSS Community would support you for doing it (even if not the content).

Plug and pray (1)

babtrek (256300) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821441)

Aren't all games, and new pieces of hardware plug and pray in windows so it doesnt seem so bad that the app for linux gaming is the same.

Cedega 4 was cooler (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821455)

Cedega 4 was nice! Just plug it into the root directory, untar it, and BAM you're playing starcraft (though battlenet took some tweaks). Cedega 5 is a bitch though. I've been trying to get it's dependancies installed on and off for a few weeks, and it's just plain uncooperative. Like so many other things, it ran better straight off the command line (wihtout some intermediate GUI).

Re:Cedega 4 was cooler (2, Interesting)

fimbulvetr (598306) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821661)

I'm on ubuntu. I downloaded the deb. Double clicked the deb. Typed my sudo password. Waited a few moments. Got the install screen. Clicked yes, next and ok. Boom! It's in my applications menu.

think about this from the other side (3, Insightful)

tcc3 (958644) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821475)

Windows gaming didnt sprout fully formed from Billy G's Head you know. MS made a concerted effort to make Windows a platform conducive to gaming, Directx being one of the main developents. Anyone remember the old days of "IBM-PC compatible" gaming? Will my sound card be supported? Is my video card the right kind? Using the OS as a layer of abstraction for compatibility makes it easier for the developer. Granted, the sheer commonness of Windows accounts for the major reason developers choose windows. More users = more sales. But compatibility and ease of development counts for something to. So wheres the Linux answer to directx? Ask not what game developers can do for Linux. Ask what Linux can do for game developers (my apologies to Kennedy)

Re:think about this from the other side (1)

Runesabre (732910) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821680)

Agree and good comparison! Making games for Linux now is like what making games for DOS was years ago. Anyone who was (un)lucky enough to work tech support for a game company in the late 80s and early 90s probably have a lot of fun stories to tell.

Re:think about this from the other side (1)

AnyoneEB (574727) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821706)

The libraries exist under Linux in the form of OpenGL, OpenAL, SDL, etc. These libraries have Windows versions. NWN and Doom 3 have native Linux binaries. It can be done. On the other hand, the fact that DirectX is so popular seems to imply that it is a better product. I would expect that the game devs looking for the maximum preformance would be using whichever libraries deliver the best preformance and would do the work to figure out which libraries those are. Then again, I am not a game developer.

Re:think about this from the other side (1)

mindtriggerz (914619) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821727)

Hate to break it to ya, but Linux already supports OpenGL and SDL, two common, powerful pieces of game technology.
Linux's HAL is second to none. And porting can be done, just look at the Second Life.

What the article doesn't mention (1)

BertieBaggio (944287) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821483)

Cedega running on Linux is nice and peachy - it installs games well, and will try and configure its WINE/transgaming layer to run the game as well as possible. However, you can forget playing a lot of games if you have an ATI graphics card. I know a lot of folk on here frequently espouse how bad driver support for ATI cards on Linux is, but you would still expect to be able to at least play some of the more popular games. I couldn't get Halflife 2 (well, any source games) to work after a fair amount of trying, and Battlefield 2 will plain not work with any ATI card (so the Cedega release notes say).

Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to deride Cedega for what are clearly ATI's shortcomings. It is, however, fairly disappointing to have a theoretically decent graphics card that can't be used for gaming on Linux. TFA would do well to include such a note for ATI card users contemplating a Cedega subscription -- I'd certainly have given it more careful consideration.

Now, if we could convince ATI and nVIDIA to release specs for their cards, while convincing more games companies to release a native Linux client, I'd be very happy. And I'd bet that a significant number of gamers would switch to Linux (any takers?). We'll see what happens when Vista-only DX10 comes along...

Re:What the article doesn't mention (1)

narfbot (515956) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821512)

You should really be using Wine, not cedega. It has better ATI support and D3D9 is almost complete.

Re:What the article doesn't mention (1)

suparjerk (784861) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821532)

> Now, if we could convince ATI and nVIDIA to release specs for their cards

At least Nvidia releases an official, stable driver...

Re:What the article doesn't mention (1)

BertieBaggio (944287) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821651)

But, as some users would argue, Cedega isn't encouraging gaming companies to develop games for Linux.

As TFA alluded above, it can be argued the presence and popularity of software such as Cedega doesn't do much to encourage companies to develop a native Linux client. The mentality is "If people are willing to get it working through Cedega/Wine, then why should we invest time and money making a Linux client?".

Similarly, my mention of card specs follows a similar line of reasoning -

ATI/nVIDIA decision-maker: "Why should we release the specs to our cards or an open driver if the majority of Linux users are happy using the binary blobs we give them?"

I'm happy the Open Graphics Project is trying to remedy this situation, but last I checked, you couldn't run the likes of Doom III on their hardware (and so I guess other modern games don't get a look-in either). I would happily pay a premium over ATI and nVIDIA's offerings if the OGP had functionally/technically equivalent cards so I can play games with good performance and stability under Linux.

The problem is. (2, Interesting)

spysmily1 (962459) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821487)

PC games in general don't have the market they use to. I remember going into some place like Babbages or EB(now everything seems to be Gamestop) and they would have almost two full walls of games. Walk into any store now including Best Buy or Circuit City and the selection is smaller with the fact that PC games don't generate revenue like they did at one time.

So with the smaller interest there is commercially to develop games for PC I'm sure it is especially difficult to find a company that wants to port their games to Linux. I am puzzled why games like The Sims don't get ported to Linux with the sales they put up. Or did they port Sims and I didn't notice. Not that anyone is missing much.

Counter strike (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821514)

I only play counter strike (and Source now). If there was a native version for linux, I'd be using linux now. I don't want to run some crappy translation even if it has 99% uptime. I want 99.999% or better. I don't see that with cedega/wine.

Re:Counter strike (1)

nukem996 (624036) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821696)

Counter strike works fine in cedega and wine. The only problem is the game gets to repetitive.

Re:Counter strike (1)

MBAFK (769131) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821699)

I have played CS and then CS:Source using [WineX|Cedega] at the end of virtually every working day for nearly 4 years. FWIW I am a happy customer who continues to pay for Cedega every month so I get my fix. Without Cedega I would not be able to play CS at all.

Not good enough. Not even close! (1)

RLiegh (247921) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821530)

I tried it last year, and the results were very hit-and-miss; GTA III would play (kinda), but Sims 2 wouldn't.
Really, at the end of the day it boils down to one simple princible: Use a desktop OS (windows) for desktop tasks (games), use a server os (Solaris) for server tasks.

Don't try to make a purse out of a pigs' ear, you'll just end up with a messy cludge like Cedega.

Bad for gaming on linux? (1)

QuantumFTL (197300) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821536)

These types of compatability layers don't really help developers to port their applications to Linux, but they remove a significant amount of the incentive to do so, as there will be less demand for a linux port when the game can be run (at least on some machines) through the compatability layer.

I expect that effect this may kill, or at least stifle the development of mainstream games on Macintel.

game performance decreased? CS on linux? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821564)

Is game performance decreased with Cedega?

Can you play Counter Strike on Linux?

Not practical or profitable to develop for Linux (5, Interesting)

Runesabre (732910) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821626)

Gaming companies don't develop for Linux because it's not pratical to support properly.

There are too many Linux distributions, none of which have a big enough of the Linux market to be considered the de facto standard Linux distribution to develop for and build a customer service department to support.

Game applications are the most strenous and sensitive to the capabilities of the platform. Windows is pretty standard with DirectX. On Linux you don't know what's going to work; the very philosophy of choice with Linux translates to everyone's machine is just different enough in a way that makes developing a game for Linux a real frustration.

Finally, once you manage to get things working on a couple distributions, a new release comes out that invalidates your existing application. And in another 6 months another release of Linux is going to come out and invalidate your work again. A developer has a hard time keeping his game working under one distribution from one version to the next. Now multiply that by 10-20 for the most popular Linux platforms each releasing new versions every 6 months.

Shipping source code to your customers and expecting them to build it every time they upgrade their machine or switch distributions isn't a solution.

Combine the constant, frequent changes that aren't guaranteed to be backwards compatible like the Windows platform provides with the sheer number of distributions of Linux you would have to support to make it worthwhile, and then consider that all this effort just to support one platform might translate to an extra 5% sales and you have your reason why game companies don't develop for Linux.

Linux is a great platform to develop for; it's a terrible platform to support. This is what's holding Linux back from becoming truly mainstream. It has nothing to do with features or hardware support or useability. If a company can't reasonably develop and SUPPORT their applications for a platform and expect a reasonable amount of sales while doing so then it's not worth doing it when you can simply focus on another platform (Windows) that is much easier to support and maintain and hits 90% of your whole market in the first place.

Multiplayer Games in the Dust (1)

sglider (648795) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821698)

Well, the title really says it all. I've been itching to switch over to a Linux only rig for a while now. I'm tired of Windows, I'm tired of all of the problems. I'd rather spend my time playing games than diagnosing the upteen million problems I've encountered with Windows.

It's too bad that my main source of enjoyment (Multiplayer FPSes) are not readily available in Cedega.

At least, not ones that use Punkbuster, the most ubiqitious anti-cheat available on the market. Battlefield 2 certainly isn't playable (at least, 1.3 isn't), so if I want to play a Ranked game, I've got to be on Windows.

I'm keenly watching and waiting for Cedega on Linux to be a true Windows gaming replacement, but it won't happen without a major change in the marketing strategies of the linux companies.

P.O.S. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15821721)

CS:S LoL. Thats all I need today and it cant do that. Waste of money.

Cedega is great, ATI still sucks (1)

Hobadee (787558) | more than 7 years ago | (#15821757)

Cedega is great - I have it. ATI, however, sucks some major ass. I still can't play any of my Windows games, not because of Cedega, but because my ATI Mobility 9200, which is claimed to be supported, still won't work properly with ATI's drivers.

-Eric Kincl
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