Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 4th Apr 2018 21:35 UTC
Games

While it's true Steam Machines aren't exactly flying off the shelves, our reasons for striving towards a competitive and open gaming platform haven't significantly changed. We're still working hard on making Linux operating systems a great place for gaming and applications. We think it will ultimately result in a better experience for developers and customers alike, including those not on Steam.

Through the Steam Machine initiative, we've learned quite a bit about the state of the Linux ecosystem for real-world game developers out there. We've taken a lot of feedback and have been heads-down on addressing the shortcomings we observed. We think an important part of that effort is our ongoing investment in making Vulkan a competitive and well-supported graphics API, as well as making sure it has first-class support on Linux platforms.

Valve has done a lot for Linux gaming, and it's good to hear they pledge to continue doing so.

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RE[3]: Some history
by moltonel on Thu 5th Apr 2018 13:14 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Some history"
moltonel
Member since:
2006-02-24

Linux will continue to lack a library of AAA games


The library of "AAA games" for Linux is actually pretty good nowadays, in good part because of Steam. GoG and Humble Bundle helped too, but not so much for AAA. For what it's worth, the MacOS offer is about the same.

I'm a regular player and haven't felt the need for wine for the last few years (and haven't used Windows for over 17 years).

There's always going to be some titles missing or arriving after the hype has died down, but there's already more quality titles available than you have time to play. Some will find the unavailability of $FAVORITE_GAME a showstopper, but most people don't care as much and would be pretty happy with today's Linux offering.

Reply Parent Score: 0

RE[4]: Some history
by ilovebeer on Thu 5th Apr 2018 15:14 in reply to "RE[3]: Some history"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

"Linux will continue to lack a library of AAA games


The library of "AAA games" for Linux is actually pretty good nowadays, in good part because of Steam. GoG and Humble Bundle helped too, but not so much for AAA. For what it's worth, the MacOS offer is about the same.
"
As both a Linux user and a gamer, you should know better than to claim Linux has a `pretty good` library of AAA games. I don't know why you would intentionally walk into that quicksand but there's no question that's what the claim is. As far as MacOS - who cares? Steam Machines specifically target Linux, and that's the subject here, not MacOS.

This is really not that complicated. Linux gaming has been a mess since forever for a myriad of reasons. It's noble of Valve to try to improve it, and most of us can appreciate their efforts, but at the end of the day deep down inside most people know those efforts will never transform Linux into a formidable gaming platform. For people who want to argue in favor of Linux gaming, I say simply that the numbers don't lie. Linux can't be both great for gaming with a good AAA library, and a flash in the gaming pan. The numbers prove the latter.

Another point... If using multi-platform game engines and cross-compiling makes it so easy & cheap to get games to Linux, why aren't the huge developers taking advantage of the easy money? It takes more than creating working binaries to get the performance needed. There's still a lot of development that takes place outside of the game engine in many cases, and it can be a significant amount - or to the game engine itself so it provides what the developers want from it. Game support and customer support are two other huge areas we haven't even gotten to.

Linux is not the gaming gold rush waiting to happen so people have convinced themselves it is. It's not even a good money-grab. It's more like collect cans and bottles. Technically you can make money doing it but it's going to be a lot of work and in the end there's very little chance it's going to make you rich.

As Valve just admitted, after 5+ years of heavy investment, "Steam Machines aren't exactly flying off the shelves", and they were supposed to be on par & real competition for consoles and Windows.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[5]: Some history
by Alfman on Thu 5th Apr 2018 16:06 in reply to "RE[4]: Some history"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

ilovebeer,

Another point... If using multi-platform game engines and cross-compiling makes it so easy & cheap to get games to Linux, why aren't the huge developers taking advantage of the easy money? It takes more than creating working binaries to get the performance needed. There's still a lot of development that takes place outside of the game engine in many cases, and it can be a significant amount - or to the game engine itself so it provides what the developers want from it. Game support and customer support are two other huge areas we haven't even gotten to.


I think that's a good question, but I suspect the answer has less to do with the technology and more to do with the politics. Game studios may have strong aversion to working with and on open source platforms that their competitors can take and legally use for themselves without licensing or royalties.


Linux is not the gaming gold rush waiting to happen so people have convinced themselves it is. It's not even a good money-grab. It's more like collect cans and bottles. Technically you can make money doing it but it's going to be a lot of work and in the end there's very little chance it's going to make you rich.


While I disagree with you that it's much more work for development, I agree with you that the market for paying linux users may be relatively weak. IMHO there's always been this conundrum for developers to target linux.

It's somewhat like android vs IOS. For reasons that have much more to do with marketing than with the underlying technology, android's lower price points attracts poorer users on average. The IOS market is smaller, but it's users have already demonstrated a willingness to spend lots of money on their gadgets. Android still gets lots of support due to it's dominant market share, however linux desktops don't have this benefit. Not only is the linux market a small niche segment, it is also comprised largely of FOSS users who have a reputation for not wanting to pay for software.

Edited 2018-04-05 16:08 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[5]: Some history
by moltonel on Thu 5th Apr 2018 17:49 in reply to "RE[4]: Some history"
moltonel Member since:
2006-02-24

As both a Linux user and a gamer, you should know better than to claim Linux has a `pretty good` library of AAA games.


Hum, I should know better than what I've observed first-hand, playing on Linux for years ?

I stand by the "pretty good library of AAA games" statement: most games I want to play are available natively, with a few clicks. That's all there is to it, it makes the library "pretty good" in my books.

YMMV depending on how frustrated you get if you can't play your specific pre-ordered favorite game on day one. But that's an off-lyer that doesn't affect the mean score.

As for Linux as a gaming platform:

* I've almost never encountered a bug that was specific to Linux.
* It costs me less than the equivalent Windows setup.
* I have better control over my computer
* And all the usual benefits of FOSS

In short: I have quite a few reasons to use Linux to begin with, and no good enough reason to switch to Windows for anything.


Linux gaming has been a mess since forever for a myriad of reasons.


Yes, and it has improved a lot. 10 Years ago I wouldn't advise non-Linux-enthusiasts to use Linux for games, but today I do. Maybe not for hardcore gamers like you seem to be, but definitely for more average people who have "gaming" as one of their regular computer activity.

those efforts will never transform Linux into a formidable gaming platform.


Indeed, probably not. There's a big step between "pretty good library" today and "formidable platform" tomorrow, so I don't see those views as incompatible.

For people who want to argue in favor of Linux gaming, I say simply that the numbers don't lie. Linux can't be both great for gaming with a good AAA library, and a flash in the gaming pan. The numbers prove the latter.

...

Linux is not the gaming gold rush waiting to happen so people have convinced themselves it is. It's not even a good money-grab.


Sounds like you're in the "through of disillusionment" of the hype cycle. I feel Linux for games is more towards the plateau of productivity. It doesn't have to overtake Windows in order to be successful. It doesn't have to be sucessful in order to be good.

I can't speak for game developers (appart from reading various blogs that seem to point out that supporting Linux is extra work but isn't *that* hard), but as a regular gamer, I feel that Linux is a "good enough" platform today.

Before you start explaining to me why my feeling is incorrect, let me define "good enough" as "I don't feel any need to look for a better one". I have plenty of non-gaming reasons that drive me away from Windows and towards Linux, and the gaming reasons that would drive me towrds Windows are too weak.

So, game developers, please make more Linux-compatible games. I'm not likely to move to a different platform. I have stopped buying games that I can only play through wine, but I do buy Linux-native games every few months.

Reply Parent Score: -1