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Old 04-16-2011, 05:46 AM   #1
starfyredragon
 
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Thumbs up Ubuntu Linux Steam, please?

One thing I'm noticing is a number of indie developers (such as minecraft and Amnesia if I recall correctly) are making their games linux-compatible because it gives them a smaller pond to be a fish in (making them proportionally a bigger fish, so to speak).

As steam is becoming a major venue for indie games, steam should really be available for linux too. I'd personally, for the sake of avoiding distro hell, make it a very specific distro of linux, more than likely vanilla Ubuntu which is the most common home linux distro at this point. Doing as such would allow Valve to have a basic idea of how the system is running and what packages are available. Further, users of other distros would likely be able to install it, but since they're using the "non-supported" distro, they would know ahead of time that there's a chance that it wouldn't work as tested by steam (which may affect their choice in distros) as well give Valve the ability to say "Hey, we told you which linux we support. Not our problem." (Which would be helpful since support can be costly. Although I'd like all linux to be fully supported, I know that'd be expensive as f***.).

Similar to how you'd have steamplay for the mac, you'd have steamplay for ubuntu. Steamplay for mac has a tendency to favor the big title games (since big title games are more likely to transition to Mac), steamplay for linux would favor the indie games (which have a tendency to use fewer proprietary libraries, and use more linux compatible languages such as java.)

As Mac is Unix based, it shouldn't be that big of a jump to make an Ubuntu steam. And it'd be nice to see which games are natively linux compatible instead of having to install Wine (which works only barely most of the time) and having to try a bajillion configurations and alternatives to see which games will work and which won't.

The change would ALSO likely let valve track how many "windows" users are actually linux users running a heavily modified Wine.

Also, valve is becoming a pretty big fish, but it still has to compete with retail for game sales. Having linux support would allow it to cover a base retail doesn't cover. (Finding commercial linux games is a pain in the a**, a pain that valve could make money by solving.)

Besides, linux has the nice ability to completely drop OS GUI features (or run a minimal OS gui). Doing that, I could squeak out an extra quarter-gig of ram and a good amount of CPU cache for my game specifically, letting me up the graphics a notch. And running Team Fortress 2 at a higher FPS makes me happy.
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Old 04-16-2011, 07:34 AM   #2
Amander
 
 
 
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Check out the rather extremely big thread on exactly that topic in the general forum.
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Old 04-16-2011, 08:49 AM   #3
Roxor
 
 
 
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In addition to this, I think a Valve-made distro specifically intended to be the OS of a console built from PC hardware would also be a good idea.

Let any PC assembler slap together a PC meeting certain minimum specs, install Valve Linux and all the customer has to do when they get it home is hook it up to the TV, log into their Steam account and download the games they want to play.

Blur the line between PC and console games, and give customers a huge catalogue of titles at launch.
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Old 04-16-2011, 08:54 AM   #4
Amander
 
 
 
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Making a Linux Distro is not that easy, you know. Also, this would blur nothing as there's just a handful games on Linux and Valve are already blurring the line with Steam Big Picture.
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Old 04-16-2011, 11:30 AM   #5
carocrazy132
 
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I don't think making an entire distro is necessary, but there is definitely something to be said about Linux as a gaming OS. Linux is actually much more efficient when playing games than windows, my games tend to much run faster on my Linux side (dual boot).

But of course, there's the problem of people not making games for Linux!

Here's the thing, steam is a behemoth in the pc gaming industry. Mac gaming was an oxymoron what seems like yesterday. But STEAM brought it to life as a viable gaming system. The problem with that being that it's inefficient and therefor has higher system requirements most of the time...

ANYWAYS, I really think that steam could pull Linux out of the hole that it is so wrongly in. I often urge my friends to use Linux and they love it, the only thing they have against it is that they can't play their favorite games on it.

I believe that if steam were to port to Linux, it could quickly become a huge profit for them, as many users would immediately switch to Linux, and then more would slowly over time.
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Old 04-16-2011, 02:55 PM   #6
Phayder92889
 
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Considering MacOS runs on top of a security gutted POSIX core, it's not that much of a stretch to develop a native linux version. And I agree with the nay-sayers about a whole distro: It'd be a ridiculous endeavor for a game company to make a whole OS when they could release a few pre-compiled packages that would work on most boxes anyway.
 
Old 04-17-2011, 05:17 AM   #7
Amander
 
 
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phayder92889 View Post
Considering MacOS runs on top of a security gutted POSIX core, it's not that much of a stretch to develop a native linux version. And I agree with the nay-sayers about a whole distro: It'd be a ridiculous endeavor for a game company to make a whole OS when they could release a few pre-compiled packages that would work on most boxes anyway.
I wouldn't mention POSIX. It's the worst joke of a standard ever. It describes basically nothing, you can't compile a program for POSIX and expect it to run on any POSIX-compatible system. Maybe someday, the LSB will reach a point where it can be used as a standards body, but so far, no one gives a damn even about the package format.
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Old 04-17-2011, 05:22 AM   #8
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We've already got a thread on this
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