Linked by boldingd on Tue 29th Jan 2013 23:12 UTC
Games It seems to have so far escaped OSNews' notice (if the top few hits for a site-search for 'Steam' is any indication) that Steam for Linux is now in Open Beta; you can get the Linux steam client from steampowered.com. So far, they appear to only be making an Ubuntu .deb available, and the client will require closed-source GPU drivers in order to work.
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Noveau development
by Darkmage on Thu 31st Jan 2013 06:56 UTC
Darkmage
Member since:
2006-10-20

It's not naïve at all. There have been benchmarks comparing the closed NVidia driver underclocked to the same core speeds as the open source nouveau drivers, and the Nouveau drivers outperformed the NVidia drivers. What will happen is Gallium3d is rapidly gaining OpenGL 3.2/3.3 support, OpenGL 4.x features are already being implemented. The GL levels will catch up to NVIDIA's closed drivers. The performance is already very good, core clock/memory clock not withstanding (and that's already being reverse engineered quickly, checkout the link in the feature matrix for clock speeds). As that work gets implemented it's going to become much easier to get newer cards supported. Each new generation of cards doesn't need to have the entire GL stack reimplemented. As much as possible is being rolled into Gallium which is lowering the needed dev time to get working drivers. Geforce 9x00 to 6x0 series cards are already very well supported and gaining quickly. Most of the "Red" is on old cards that no one should be using anyway. VDPAU support is mostly implemented. Based on current progress two years is actually a pretty good estimate. I've been following this stuff for more than 10 years, I've also done enough development and been around the Linux Game Development community to be able to say that this is coming along unbelieveably well. It's going to be like the Wifi drivers, in Two years graphics card support will Just Work on Intel/Nvidia and maybe even on ATi (I won't hold my breath on ATi).

If you want to know why the FOSS games have bad graphics/lack of creative assets it's simple: It's the Tools. Where is FRED/FRED2 for every FPS clone out there? Where is the Mission editor for all of these games? Not the random python script to code a mission but the easy drag/drop 3d editor that lets me place bad guys and script events using a mouse and some text boxes? This is why FLOSS games suck, there's no tools to make them unless you are a full programmer versed in Python/GIMP. The other issue is from an art perspective. There are very few tools that artists use on Linux. On windows there are about 20-40 3d modelling packages, each has it's own workflow and artists pick 1-3 and stick with them because it fits a style they fall into. Linux only really has Blender and Maya. Maya is fine if you're rich, but if not it's Blender or nothing. This unfortunately leaves out everyone who's using Lightwave/3dsmax/truespace/rhino3d etc. There's also a lack of tools like DeepExploration for format conversion and some other tools on Windows like one I saw that reloads all texture images on a model when you click it's screen. So you use two screens, photoshop/3d editor on one screen and the other is the model viewer, as you edit the textures or geometry, you shift the mouse to the second screen and instantly see the changes to your model. Linux has nothing like this which means modders/artists will continue to use Windows.

Edited 2013-01-31 07:09 UTC

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