An insight into the future of Linux Gaming
A couple short years back, Android was introduced, a version of the Linux operating system running on a mobile device. During which time Blackberry had the lead, Apple was picking up market share, and Android Market only had a few apps.
Now things have indelibly changed, Blackberry is losing it’s grip on the market, iOS devices are over-priced and forcing people to look for cost effective solutions, and Android runs on almost everything with a very apt Google Play store.
As things change, platform support is a hot topic, with a great deal happening on Linux and the gaming market. Notably, game engines. Moai and Unity were the first two to offer support, allowing anyone looking to develop games with a commercial engine across desktop operating systems and mobile devices, a viable resource.
But lets not forget, Unigine has had cross platform support (excluding mobile) from the beginning, going on to create it’s own game, Oil Rush. A successful Naval Strategy RTS with stunning graphics and a game engine that is widely used for hardware benchmarking.
And there is still a possibility we could see CryEngine 3 coming to the platform.
In fact, I would be rather keen to see CryEngine 3 games making their debut. Titles like Crysis 3 and the upcoming Homefront 2 would be epic. Cracking what seemed like the once impossible market and putting the Linux platform into the mainstream.
Now that Valve has entered the picture with the up and coming Steam client making massive headlines online. What really gets me is the level of commitment Valve is putting into releasing official games. Going out of their way to ensure performance is the same in Linux as it is in Windows.
- getting the Steam client onto Linux with full functionality
- optimizing a version of Left 4 Dead 2 running at a high frame rate (with OpenGL),
- porting additional Valve titles. .
The first thing that comes to my mind, if the Steam Summer Sale had native linux support, how would the face of gaming look?
My recent purchases like Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed Revelations, Rockstar’s L.A. Noire and Max Payne 3, would be even more indicative of ear to ear smiles for me. The linux community would knowingly purchase major AAA titles with ease and have the expected support (and hopefully stability).
Future Valve titles like the rumoured Half-Life 3 would be a known Linux expectation upon release. As would Ricochet 2, which seems to be in development now, but with undisclosed details.
While other future titles would certainly have to look at the Linux platform to ensure they are recognized in the gaming market. The amount of capability that comes to mind is staggering.
Hardware and Peripheral Support
A couple months back I emailed Marc Roth regarding Leap Motion, the gesture-control module that’s quoted as being, “200 times more accurate than anything else on the market”.
When asked about Linux support, the reply was favorably “Linux solutions are very bright on the radar.” Which leads me to believe Leap are looking to ensure the platform is able to take full adventure of their hardware and has the game development to back it.
While companies like Logitech and Razor have yet to take Linux support seriously. Most likely having to broaden their horizons for mice, keyboards, and other game controllers. If they are to remain competitive in the market. While other hardware vendors will also have to improve their tools, expand to more accurate support, both with graphics and audio drivers.
No more chasing setup & configuration details in forum posts or scrambling for open-source drivers. 😀
It looks like Linux is finally at the vantage point we have all been expecting.
So where do you think Valve’s recent Linux endeavours will take the platform?
How with it bring more capability?