Steam and Linux Are Now an Item

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Steam and Linux Are Now an Item

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Steam is coming to Ubuntu and it's bringing Left 4 Dead 2 with it.

For years, Linux users looking to do a little gaming have been forced to resort to stop-gap measures like Wine, the popular Windows emulator. Of course, emulators come with a whole mess of bugs, quirks and compatibility issues, and considering that modern PC games aren't exactly the stablest of programs to begin with, frustration tends to be the rule rather than the exception. Enter Valve and project "Steam'd Penguins."

A dedicated development team at Valve has been working on a fully-featured version of the Steam client for Ubuntu 12.04 since 2011. The team already has Left 4 Dead 2 running natively under the popular Linux distribution, and they're currently working on improving the game's performance so it can launch alongside the client. Once that's done, the team is going to start porting additional Valve titles and, should the project turn out successful, look into supporting other Linux distros.

Overall, good news for Linux users, though it remains to be seen if the OS has enough interested gamers to make the venture profitable for Valve.

Source: Valve Linux Blog

Permalink

Whether or not it'll be profitable is hard to say, but there is another question to be raised: If there suddenly are decent game libraries available on Linux, how many gamers are going to switch from Windows? I know I wouldn't mind purging some windows partitions for all eternity if I could. As a gamer, however, I just can't.

The day I ditch windows is getting closer....

Well windows... it's been nice knowing you...

If this was anyone else, I'd say this idea would go down like a granite zepplin, but I can't help shake the feeling that Valve is doing this as a non-commercial venture.

I mean, Ubuntu just doesn't have the user base to support this right?

So the only conclusion can be that Valve are doing this cos they're Valve.

Grey Carter:
. . .stop-gap measures like Wine, the popular Windows emulator.

facepalm.jpg

I'm guessing the author doesn't know what WINE stands for.

So long dental plan.... I mean Windows, sorry that's forever burned in my brain.

The March of the PC Gamers.
Tragically, this OS, will not survive.

If this catches enough momentum, I'll seriously consider switching over to Ubuntu.

Actually, I think the set of PC gamers has a rather large intersection with the set of linux users. We've all just been waiting for the day when someone wonderful group like Valve would see fit to do it up right.

Anyone predicting that the availability of mainstream games on Linux means Windows is doomed doesn't appreciate quite how embedded MS is in business and government.

I do welcome this though. The challenge for Valve will be getting third party publishers to follow. It'll be awesome one day if "released on Steam" would by default mean that you could it buy for your account, and run it on Windows, Mac and Linux.

Scrythe:

Novaova:

Grey Carter:
. . .stop-gap measures like Wine, the popular Windows emulator.

facepalm.jpg

I'm guessing the author doesn't know what WINE stands for.

WINdows Emulator, or Wine Is Not an Emulator?

Because however you dress it up, semantics-wise, it's still a fucking emulator.

Calling it a "compatibility layer" is just as pretentious as calling a comic book a "graphic novel".

Don't be a douche.

No, it's really a compatibility layer. It doesn't emulate anything, it just ports direct X over to Linux. That's hugely different from emulating the entire operating system.

Scrythe:

Novaova:

Grey Carter:
. . .stop-gap measures like Wine, the popular Windows emulator.

facepalm.jpg

I'm guessing the author doesn't know what WINE stands for.

WINdows Emulator, or Wine Is Not an Emulator?

Because however you dress it up, semantics-wise, it's still a fucking emulator.

Calling it a "compatibility layer" is just as pretentious as calling a comic book a "graphic novel".

Don't be a douche.

Semantics aside, graphic novels are called what they are to avoid the idiocy of people who assume all comics are stupid superhero things, just as WINE is called a compatibility layer to avoid the idiocy of people who assume all emulators recreate the machine/OS using multiple times the power/CPU they need. I'll agree that WINE is literally an emulator according to the dictionary, but the actual in-depth definition of "emulator" in the context of computing does not fit WINE.

I'm confused, whats good about Linux again?

Oh, its because Windows is too mainstreamed isn't it? And using an OS to limit yourself with will stick it to the man right? Never mind I got it now.

I'm just gonna drift away in shame on my microsoft made console Xbox 360 and play one of those sell out triple A titles Mass Effect 3 by playing the most over marketed gameplay feature, "Online Multiplayer!" Also made by the also sell outs Bioware and published by the most evil and worst company on America, EA.

Man I'm such a corporate sheep whore. XD.

Whoop! A Linux client! Wait... Ubuntu only? Surely further ports would move a lot faster if they open source their client and game-engines (presuming they're native too). Here's hoping that that's what they do...

Jove:
*snip*

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man

Well I somewhat doubt this will end up being a major solution. If your lucky you would see, what? 1/3rd the available games on steam, at best? It would certainly be a boon and yes gaming is essentially the only thing keeping me fully on a windows desktop environment.

none the less.. glad to hear it. Seems like most technology companies fear adding support for their products to linux. So to hear more support for a major tech centric company is a positive indeed.

Novaova:

Grey Carter:
. . .stop-gap measures like Wine, the popular Windows emulator.

facepalm.jpg

I'm guessing the author doesn't know what WINE stands for.

Owyn_Merrilin:

Scrythe:

Novaova:

facepalm.jpg

I'm guessing the author doesn't know what WINE stands for.

WINdows Emulator, or Wine Is Not an Emulator?

Because however you dress it up, semantics-wise, it's still a fucking emulator.

Calling it a "compatibility layer" is just as pretentious as calling a comic book a "graphic novel".

Don't be a douche.

No, it's really a compatibility layer. It doesn't emulate anything, it just ports direct X over to Linux. That's hugely different from emulating the entire operating system.

To quote the official FAQ: "Wine is not just an emulator" is more accurate.

--

--

Of course being able to play games on Linux and having games to play on Linux are two different things. I'm willing to be Steams 'Linux' section will have the Source Games and nothing else.

Finally! As soon as this gets released , it's on my Machine.

I've been trying (as a gamer) to get Windows off of my Machine and start using WINE and Debian/Ubuntu (Ubuntu is based on Debian 3 , so there isn't that big a difference) . It didn't really work out though (it ran too slow due to WINE - my 1.73GHz Celeron M CPU was only as good as my friend's 1.0GHz Pentium), even if it ran pretty good (Flatout 2 -1280x800,min. Graphics settings -> 25fps) with the "C:\Windows" Folder copied from my Windows Vista installation .

EDIT:Since this seems to be a reocurring question : I use(d) GNU/Linux due to its speed benefits and lack of bugs (ALL problems I had while my machine was running Linux were due to me doing something I shouldn't have done.

EDIT2:Everything else (all Linux applications , MS Office) ran just as well and responsive on the old Toshiba laptop with Linux (1.73GHz Celeron M 430,1GB RAM,ATi GPU 64MB) as it did on the Compaq CQ40 with Windows 7(2x2.2GHz,4GB RAM,ATi HD3450 512MB).

Jove:
I'm confused, whats good about Linux again?

Oh, its because Windows is too mainstreamed isn't it? And using an OS to limit yourself with will stick it to the man right? Never mind I got it now.

If we run by that metaphor "the man" is already sticking people with a log and that's why people want to "stick it to the man". People don't always do things for no reason. Better try to figure out first the other side... which you did, you asked. So anyway, I'm not an expert, but an expert told me how Linux is more stable and uses hardware resources better, which would mean everything would work better on Linux. The problem is that it's not popular enough, (almost) everyone uses Windows, so (almost) everyone produces software for Windows only, which in turn puts off people from using Linux and so on in circles.

The interesting thing is that while Windows reigns supreme in the consumer end of the market, Linux runs most servers.

Oh, and "the log" would be "crappier OS" (but it has more software for it, that's true, but at a cost of lower performance and less potential).

DVS BSTrD:
The March of the PC Gamers.
Tragically, this OS, will not survive.

bahahaha you so funny. As long as it is free, it will last

Bit of a noob question I know but, what's a Linux?

Linux vs Windows is always a heated discussion.
Which is better? Well define better.

In terms of application availability for the general consumer, not to mention games, Windows does take the lead.

Linux is better in the sense that it has been designed better, it is much less bloated from installation, the file system is more effective and so on. While many developers swear to linux, it hasn't gained any mainstream adoption on the desktop. This is mostly due to applications not being ported to it.

Will it be better for games? In theory yes. If someone (Microsoft) were to release a DirectX runtime for linux, then one could build a more stable, more streamlined gaming machine, since linux requires less services and such to run.

Windows does not use resources less effectively, it just has more components. You have all these services targeted at the corporate business model, you have a lot services targeting legacy software, DRM and security. All these things would eventually make it to linux should it get a broader adoption.

Aeshi:
Of course being able to play games on Linux and having games to play on Linux are two different things. I'm willing to be Steams 'Linux' section will have the Source Games and nothing else.

And presumably all the games that have been in Humble Indie bundles. And those that have linux versions already available on Desura.

For as much as I despise Steam and I don't use Linux yet (my server, however, will) I'm glad that a company is finally paying attention to a demographic that's so far gone unnoticed despite being a potentially strong source for sales.

Linux users have literally been trying to throw money at companies to take it. Valve is finally just grabbing it. I, for one, welcome our new FOSS overlords.

Seriously though, it won't be hard to port it to other *nixes once the ubuntu beta is up. I will soon enjoy the delicious combination of Fedora and Team Fortress 2. A hat for my hat simulator.
And valve shall receive buckets of my money. Buckets.

Damn you valve! I purposely side-by-side installed linux so I could have an OS that didn't have my steam library installed on it! Damn your conceited efforts to undermine my productivity!

Vanitas likes Bubbles:
Bit of a noob question I know but, what's a Linux?

This MIGHT seem a lot to read , but it answers your question and some questions that WILL come afterwards:

Linux is an Operating System that can run on multiple "platforms" (x86,x86-64,PowerPC,ARM(Mobile Phones,Tablets),sparc,...and many more) . Linux comes in a package which is called a "Distribution" or "distro" for short . Major distributions are Ubuntu , Debian , Gentoo , Red Hat , Fedora , SuSE & OpenSuSE , Android , ...

Linux makes better use of hardware because it is not as heavy on RAM and CPU usage as Windows .

If you use a Linux distro , you also get to choose what User Interface (UI) you want. In no particular order : GNOME , KDE (much like Windows) , tab window manager (TWM) , XFCE (very customisable) , X11 (the basic window manager , gives you a console in a window and lets you start applications from there) , text-only interface (console) . All User interfaces launch automatically on start of the OS , but can be started out of the text-only interface using their desktop manager names (gdm,kdm,twm,xfdm,x11) . On OS installation a Graphical UI is automatically installed (for Ubuntu - GNOME/Unity, Kubuntu - KDE , Xubuntu - XFCE)

Something very very major about Linux (at least for me) is : The file system (you can choose the FS -like NTFS or FAT32 on Windows - yourself) . You don't have , like , "C:\" , but you have a central filesystem called "/" located on one partition with mountpoints pointing to other partitions . This way , if a partition gets deleted/formatted , you don't lose data that has been stored on other partitions . Also , if you make separate partitions for your /home and /usr (Program Files+ProgramData+AppData) folders , you can reinstall your OS at any given time and not lose a thing .

Microsoft clearly don't want people to game on Microsoft (Less money for them!) and Windows 8 is such a shitty locked down OS that I think Valve might be considering the possibility that Microsoft will try forcing us to move to Xbox at some point in the future and are testing the waters of Linux in case of that eventuality.

Yes I do think this tinfoil hat looks good on me.

Looking forward to this, I hate fiddling with WINE and much prefer using Kubuntu over Win7.

Downside is I've kept games off my Linux partition and used it for work, so if Steams going over I'm going be losing some productivity!

Other than the aforementioned better usage of resources of Linux, I will never understand why people prefer it. I ran it on my laptop for a while, Unbuntu, it was pretty crappy frankly. And my PC is powerful to handle anything I throw it, without windows holding it back.. As are most people's gaming PCs..

I just.. Fail to see any upside of using it rather than windows.

Lukeje:
Whoop! A Linux client! Wait... Ubuntu only? Surely further ports would move a lot faster if they open source their client and game-engines (presuming they're native too). Here's hoping that that's what they do...

Jove:
*snip*

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man

That rant had nothing to do with a straw man. You might think it was obnoxious and stupid, but it never attempted to discredit or rebuke anything by setting up a false observation and then knocking it down. It certainly made a silly argument and one that is entirely false, but it was simply an opinion piece.

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