Other News about gaming on Linux

Quake 2 openal error in Fedora 27

Reddit Linux_Gaming - 16. März 2018 - 17:10

Can't get music to work in Yamagi in Fedora 27. I'm getting an OpenAL error that may be related:

"AL lib: (WW) alSetError: Error generated on context 0x3225a60, code 0xa002"

Anyone know what this is about?

submitted by /u/Cuprite_Crane
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The developer of One Hour One Life on keeping games code & assets open and not launching on Steam

Gaming on Linux - 16. März 2018 - 16:01

Tags: Editorial, Misc

The developer of One Hour One Life [Official Site] and The Castle Doctrine [Official Site] has made two interesting posts lately, one about not launching a game on Steam and one about keeping your game code and assets open to anyone.

Firstly, yes, I am being careful with my wording here. The code and assets are open, but they're not open source. As far as I can see, they don't have actual licenses and the developer just says they're public domain. It's really great to see, but not technically open source. I have to say this, or else people (rightly so) bug me about it. Now, with that out of the way…

Firstly, there's been a large number of developers concerned about the growth on Steam. How they released their games in the past on days where nothing or only a few others were releasing. Today things are rather different, today alone there's around 20 games being released on Steam (across all operating systems).

The developer in question, Jason Rohrer, is well aware of this. He's decided so far not to release One Hour One Life on Steam. Writing in this news post, it's really quite encouraging how well he's actually done. Going by one of the charts he showed off, he's gained over $67K and the game has only been out since late February and you can only purchase it directly from his site.

One thing he also said, is that he thinks game press is essentially gone. I wouldn't say I agree with that, the fact that we're here and we do generate a lot of sales for developers (thanks to same stats I can see) shows that gaming press still has a long life left in it (we're still quite small too). However, what he's saying is partly true, a lot of "press" has shifted over to places like YouTube and Twitch (we're there too, see the links), which is also a good way for people to experience a game through videos of people genuinely trying to play it so they can see if they want to buy it, it's a very different world to the written word.

Screenshot taken today in the Linux build of One Hour One Life

He says he designed One Hour One Life specifically to fit in with how things are now, something people will keep coming back to, he calls it a "a unique-situation-generator". He's not wrong either, One Hour One Life is certainly unique as a survival game, one that can create many funny stories. It's also a very strange game, one full of terrible parenting and a civilization currently no further along than what I imagine from Neanderthals. It’s a very experimental game, one that tells you quite literally nothing from the moment you’re born into it.

Rohrer also recently took to reddit, to post about "How I made $670K over the past 8 years with 100% Open Source games" (again, see my note above though). In this post, Rohrer talked about how you can sell games, even when they are open for anyone to get in some form. What he's saying for the most part is exactly right too, people will 99% of the time pay for the convenience of just downloading a ready working build. I know I will pay for that convenience, I'm also much more likely to do so if the code is open source too.

All encouring and interesting to read, I do like his views on DRM and how you really can't stop people doing what they want, it's such a waste of time and effort in the end. What are your thoughts?

Tropico 6 has a new trailer showing off some new gameplay features

Gaming on Linux - 16. März 2018 - 15:03

Tags: Coming Soon, Steam, City Builder, Simulation

Greetings wannabe dictators, El Presidente is back with another new trailer of Tropico 6 [Steam] to show off some new features.

I have to say, it certainly looks good, but it's still not showing enough of what the actual gameplay will look like. Even so, from the short slices we've seen it looks like it might have quite a bit more depth than Tropico 5.

Tropico 6 will feature:

  • Play on large archipelagos for the first time in the series. Manage multiple islands at the same time and adapt to various new challenges.
  • Send your agents on raids to foreign lands to steal world wonders and monuments, to add them to your collection. 
  • Build bridges, construct tunnels and transport your citizens and tourists in taxis, buses and aerial cable cars. Tropico 6 offers completely new transportation and infrastructure possibilities.
  • Customize the looks of your palace at will and choose from various extras.
  • Tropico 6 features a revised research system focusing on the political aspects of being the world’s greatest dictator. 
  • Election speeches are back! Address the people and make promises that you can’t possibly keep.

It's still confirmed to be releasing on Linux, but there's no date for any platform yet other than this year. This time around, Limbic Entertainment are developing it instead of Haemimont Games (who just put out Surviving Mars).

More when we have it.

How big is the FPS Loss switching from Windows to KDE Neon for gaming?

Reddit Linux_Gaming - 16. März 2018 - 15:00

Hello, so I recently looked into switching to Linux. It just feels so much smoother and looks so much better to me that I would just download it onto my main PC and start using it. I have looked into running games with wine, but I am still not sure if I am going to lose a big chunk of my FPS in games like that. 10-20% would be ideal for me, though I would consider switching even if it is 30%.

I know that games that will run natively on linux, would run better, though I am specifically asking for games run with Wine.

Thank you for reading all this, and thank you in advance for replying.

submitted by /u/HaliGamer53
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The 25th Ward: The Silver Case, the follow up to The Silver Case released with day-1 Linux support

Gaming on Linux - 16. März 2018 - 14:51

Tags: GOG, Steam, Adventure, Visual Novel, Unity3D

That's right, The 25th Ward: The Silver Case [GOG, Steam] the follow up title to The Silver Case which gained Linux support in an update to the remastered version last year. This time around, we saw day-1 support.

Like the previous game, The 25th Ward: The Silver Case is actually a remaster made with completely rebuilt HD assets and this is the first time the game has been available outside of Japan, it also includes new content not found in the original release.

Disclosure: Copy provided by GOG, GOG links are affiliate links.

About the game: 

It is five years since the events of 1999’s “The Silver Case,” set in the new 25th Ward that arose in the bayside area of Kanto. In a room of the “Bayside Tower Land” apartment complex, a woman is found murdered under mysterious circumstances. This sets off a series of seemingly random events bridging across multiple protagonists including The Silver Case’s Tokio Morishima. With all viewpoints assembled, a truly shocking pattern emerges…

  • A SUDA51 Trip - Set in the “Kill the Past” universe, the series continues its bleak look into a semi-futuristic world on the edge of collapse and the misfits and antiheroes that inhabit it.
  • Brave New World - The return of the signature “Film Window” system is brought to The 25th Ward for the first time! New visuals, sounds and controls capture the game in a fresh perspective.
  • One Story, Many Sides – Explore this dark take on Tokyo from three different perspectives, “Correctness,” “Placebo,” and “Matchmaker.

Testing the Linux version sent over by GOG, everything seemed to work exactly as expected, it includes both a 32bit and 64bit build. It's a Unity engine game, thankfully it seems it was built with a version of Unity that doesn't have the blackscreen bug on Linux (hooray!).

For those who do try it, it's TAB to access the in-game menu. Took me a while to find that…thankfully that's a big improvement over the previous game, being able to save where you are easily.

It's currently 10% off across both GOG and Steam. Great to see more Japanese games arrive with Linux support.

There was a slight delay with the Linux build on GOG, but it's now arrived too.

DayZ is not currently coming to Linux, but the developers are open to it

Gaming on Linux - 16. März 2018 - 13:59

Tags: Steam, Zombies, Action

During a recent livestream, the DayZ [Steam] developers mentioned Linux and a few people went wild. Sadly, they meant this in relation to dedicated servers, but the door remains open.

Here's what they actually said during it:

After that we're just going to give you the server files, both for Windows and maybe down the road Linux which is in preparation right now.

I had multiple emails, a bunch of mentions across our social spaces and it popped up on reddit that people thought it was coming to Linux. I just want to make sure the record is set straight. I spoke to the DayZ developers, who said this to me directly today (quoted with permission):

That mention was indeed dedicated to us supporting Linux servers mostly. We’re definitely open to supporting Linux for the game itself, but that’ll be realistic only after we reach the 1.0 version of the game, as the multi platform/system development would become a bit tricky when still in Early Access.

Who knows, maybe we will see it later down the line, maybe not. It's good that they remain open to it, but for now it's not coming to Linux.

Space station building sim 'Starmancer' has smashed through some fun stretch-goals on Kickstarter

Gaming on Linux - 16. März 2018 - 12:08

Tags: Crowdfunding, Simulation, Demo, Coming Soon

It's certainly no secret I'm impressed with Starmancer [Kickstarter], the Dwarf Fortress inspired space station sim. It has a Linux demo and the funding is still coming in, the stretch goals they've reached sound fantastic.

In my last post about it, I said how it would great with a creative mode. Good news everyone! Since I wrote that, they've hit a stretch goal to expand their team, they've hit the goal required for Creative Mode and on top of that they've even hit the goal to include a Robotic Faction! I don't think I can get any more hyped up about this…

They're now running at around $128K, with the next stretch goal at $140K to include "Xenos", which will include old alien ruins to search through and scavenge, although with only 15 hours to go they're not liking to reach that one. Shame, but amazing they've done so well!

If you're interested in reading more, they've also put up a blog post talking about the needs of your colonists. They're going to need you to look after them, as they will need: Oxygen, Water, Food, Toilet Breaks, Warmth, Sleep and Social Interactions. I've enjoyed killing them often in the demo. For those wanting to try the demo, it's available here.

I've personally backed this one, the demo works quite well and the developer has been very responsive to feedback.

Kerbal Space Program: Making History Expansion is out expanding the game quite a lot

Gaming on Linux - 16. März 2018 - 11:41

Tags: DLC, GOG, Steam

Kerbal Space Program: Making History Expansion [GOG, Steam] is the first expansion for the amusing rocket-building sandbox game and it adds some pretty decent content.

Disclosure: Key provided by GOG, also GOG links are affiliate links.

Here's what it adds:

  • Mission Builder: This robust new feature puts the process of creating and editing missions in players’ hands with endless possibilities. Players can customize their own missions to include launches, landings, rescues, malfunctions, explosions, repairs, and much more. Unique victory conditions, exciting challenges, and unexpected obstacles provide an array of complexity in these missions. Challenge others by sharing your created missions with the KSP community.
  • History Pack: Play a variety of pre-made missions inspired by humankind’s own space exploration. From spacewalking to crash landing and everything in between, players can attempt to recreate moments inspired by historic events, but with a unique Kerbal twist.
  • New Parts: This expansion also includes dozens of new parts along with new astronaut suits, all inspired by the historic Space Race. Players can use these parts and suits throughout Kerbal Space Program.

It's certainly not an easy game, one which I've personally struggled with quite a bit. It's amusing though, my failures have kept me going as I've wanted to do better. Some games are fun to fail in, KSP is certainly a game that fits there. For me, I hadn't actually played for quite some time, so it was interesting to re-learn it all. What I especially like about KSP, is how simple it actually is to build a ship. Getting it to work properly and go where you need to is another story altogether, but the tutorials are decent enough to get you going.

If you were already a fan of KSP, picking it up I would consider to be a no-brainer. The Linux version seems to work really well, which is awesome. KSP has an already active modding community, which the developer has now given a big boost thanks to the Mission Builder, it will be interesting to see what people can come up with.

Find the expansion now on GOG and Steam, for those who don't own the actual game it's currently 50% off on both stores for another few hours.

Animal sim RPG 'Cattails' has a pretty great update letting you make your own colony

Gaming on Linux - 16. März 2018 - 11:39

Tags: RPG, Indie Game, Steam, Adventure

The sweet and relaxing animal sim RPG Cattails [SteamOfficial Site] just had a big update, with a highly requested feature to let you build up your own colony.

Here's what's new at a glance:

  • Custom Colonies!
  • 6 new NPCs, 3 of which are marriageable
  • 12 architectural styles to unlock for your colony structures
  • 14 new coat colors to unlock
  • Balance tweaks (especially in regards to store pricing and item availability)
  • Various bugfixes & quality-of-life improvements (especially in regards to savefile management)

The developer has said they still plan to continue updating the game and they already have some plans for content. They say more details about what's coming will be revealed in a future update.

You can see my original thoughts on the game here.

[first timer] SteamOS?

Reddit Linux_Gaming - 16. März 2018 - 09:54

Which distro should I use? I thought SteamOS would be good considering I wouldn't play games outside of Steam and the OS designed for gaming. Obviously Steam games would perform better on it but how does it compare to a simple home use distro like Ubuntu? Does SteamOS compromise other elements such as web surfing?

submitted by /u/catzybluphish
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I find that Linux isn't fast compared to Windows to some extent, as if Linux can't run multiple process as good

Reddit Linux_Gaming - 16. März 2018 - 03:15

For example right now I am watching a movie and I wanted to play Terraria at the same time, the game is lagging at 30 fps, but if I stop the movie the framerate goes back to 60 fps. I never had such issues with Windows so I was wondering if it's because the Kernel isn't as fast or the way it's build, you also can't unable quicksync, and when I render with Blender I can't use my computer for basic stuff. I still freaking love Linux and will use it forever, don't see it like I'm a troll or talking bad about it, it's a serious question. Thank you.

Here's my screenfetch https://i.imgur.com/JVI8IdL.png

submitted by /u/RootFury
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What's your preferred way to play Genesis ROMs on a modern Linux system?

Reddit Linux_Gaming - 16. März 2018 - 02:46

I've been wanting to play Contra: Hard Corps, but I've found that Higan's Genesis emulation is pretty subpar (the backgrounds don't update in the video render, so you're kind of playing blind, with only the foreground objects being drawn to the screen), and some of the other popular Genesis emulators are so old that they don't work on 64-bit systems. I installed MAME, which has merged with MESS, but I couldn't figure out how to launch the ROM at all; I tried "mame megadrive <path to ROM>" but that just led to MAME trying to match the ROM to a list of known ROMs and no way to tell it which one it actually was.

So, what's a guy to do? I just want to play a Genesis game on a modern Linux OS.

submitted by /u/gamelord12
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mouse keybinds

Reddit Linux_Gaming - 15. März 2018 - 23:54

Does anyone recommend a utility to pull this off? am running Arch. Been playing Diablo 3 and would like to bind one of the attacks to a mouse button.


submitted by /u/Tister1985
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Croteam will have an interesting talk at GDC this year about game performance

Gaming on Linux - 15. März 2018 - 23:39

Tags: Misc

It seems Croteam will be doing a talk at GDC this year and it sounds like it's going to be quite interesting, with it being centred around getting games to perform smoothly. The talk will be presented by the Croteam CTO, Alen Ladavac.

For those not familiar, Croteam have been pretty great supporters of Linux gaming. Thanks to them we have The Talos Principle and multiple Serious Sam games. Not only that, they were one of the first developers to get their games on Steam when it initially released for Linux.

That wouldn't exactly be newsworthy by itself, sure, but Valve has actually been working directly with Croteam in order to find solutions to the issue of micro-stuttering in games. This is the issue of a game running at 60FPS, yet it might stutter and not be as smooth as you would want and expect it to be.

Valve's Pierre-Loup Griffais tweeted this out about it:

We've been helping @Croteam with their quest to resolve frame pacing and stuttering problems that have been affecting all gaming platforms for a long time; the Linux graphics stack lets us create solutions.[…]

With Croteam's CTO then thanking both Pierre-Loup and Keith Packard "for the driver that's able to finally pull this off!". It's very interesting to see Linux being mentioned liked this, exciting to see in fact.

Hopefully the GDC video of it will be online, even if it isn't it seems we're going to hear more about it in future:

[…]If you are not attending the GDC, do not despair. Croteam and Valve will be talking about this more in the future.[…]

You can see details of the talk here on the GDC site and it's scheduled for Monday next week.