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Games: Civilization VI, Hex: Shards of Fate, Next Up Hero, Shoppe Keep 2, Cendric and More

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  • The “Fall 2017” update for Civilization VI has finally made it to Linux

    I’ll mention it right at the top: there’s still no cross-platform multiplayer as of this update.

    Putting that aside, this latest update makes a few important changes to Civilization VI [Official Site]. Perhaps most notably, religion has seen a reformation of sorts with new units, pantheons, rules and balancing passes that have changed up how that aspect of the game develops. I noticed from a quick game that it’s now much easier to tell apart the different religions of missionaries and see how trade affects the spreading of faith. Likewise, in a similar vein, a lot of the game’s UI has seen a lot of changes for the better. The diplomacy screen has been overhauled and there’s all sorts of small touches that make it simpler to understand the information the game is throwing at you.

    The Khmer and Indonesia are also now in the game as part of a DLC pack. It also adds both a new wonder, Ankor Wat, as well as a natural wonder, Ha Long Bay. Like with the other DLC thus far, there’s also a new scenario included with special rules but, as of the time of writing this article, it’s not selectable on the in-game list. I contacted Aspyr about that omission and I’ve been told that they’ll look into it. Hopefully it’s just something that was overlooked and easily fixed.

  • Hex: Shards of Fate, a digital card game, has unofficial Linux builds available

    This rather fun trading card game has had unofficial builds that run on Linux for a little while now. I tried them out and it’s a pretty fun game, but don’t expect official support anytime soon.

  • Next Up Hero from Digital Continue & Aspyr Media won't be on Linux until the full release

    For those excited by Next Up Hero [Steam, Official Site], the new 2D action game from Digital Continue & Aspyr Media we have somewhat bad news, as there's no Linux support during Early Access.

  • Merchant simulator 'Shoppe Keep 2' to have Linux support at Early Access launch

    The developer of Shoppe Keep 2 [Steam, Official Site] has announced that Linux will be supported in their merchant simulator when it launches in Early Access.

  • Cendric, an RPG and Platformer hybrid will launch on Linux in March

    Cendric [Steam, Official Site] is an interesting discovery, a game this mixes platformer gameplay with an RPG and it will launch with Linux support in March.

    What's interesting, is that the game is open on GitHub, where a lot of the assets are under a mixure of Creative Commons licenses. Unsure about the code, since it isn't mentioned. The actual game engine is custom-made and is based on the SFML library.

  • Voting is now open for our Linux GOTY Awards

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today's howtos

Linux - The beginning of the end

You should never swear at people under you - I use the word under in the hierarchical sense. Colleagues? Well, probably not, although you should never hold back on your opinion. Those above you in the food chain? It's fair game. You risk it to biscuit it. I say, Linus shouldn't have used the language he did in about 55-65% of the cases. In those 55-65% of the cases, he swore at people when he should have focused on swearing at the technical solution. The thing is, people can make bad products but that does not make them bad people. It is important to distinguish this. People often forget this. And yes, sometimes, there is genuine malice. My experience shows that malice usually comes with a smile and lots of sloganeering. The typical corporate setup is an excellent breeding ground for the aspiring ladder climber. Speaking of Linus, it is also vital to remember that the choice of language does not always define people, especially when there are cultural differences - it's their actions. In the remainder of the cases where "bad" language was used (if we judge it based on the approved corporate lingo vocab), the exchange was completely impersonal - or personal from the start on all sides - in which case, it's a different game. The problem is, it's the whole package. You don't selective get to pick a person's attributes. Genius comes with its flaws. If Linus was an extroverted stage speaker who liked to gushy-mushy chitchat and phrase work problems in empty statements full of "inspiring" and "quotable" one-liners, he probably wouldn't be the developer that he is, and we wouldn't have Linux. So was he wrong in some of those cases? Yes. Should he have apologized? Yes, privately, because it's a private matter. Definitely not the way it was done. Not a corporate-approved kangaroo court. The outcome of this story is disturbing. A public, humiliating apology is just as bad. It's part of the wider corporate show, where you say how sorry you are on screen (the actual remorse is irrelevant). Linus might actually be sorry, and he might actually be seeking to improve his communication style - empathy won't be part of that equation, I guarantee that. But this case - and a few similar ones - set a precedence. People will realize, if someone like Linus gets snubbed for voicing his opinion - and that's what it is after all, an opinion, regardless of the choice of words and expletives - how will they be judged if they do something similar. But not just judged. Placed in the (social) media spotlight and asked to dance to a tune of fake humility in order to satisfy the public thirst for theatrics. You are not expected to just feel remorse. You need to do a whole stage grovel. And once the seed of doubt creeps in, people start normalizing. It's a paradox that it's the liberal, democratic societies that are putting so much strain on the freedom of communication and speech. People forget the harsh lessons of the past and the bloody struggles their nations went through to ensure people could freely express themselves. Now, we're seeing a partial reversal. But it's happening. The basket of "not allowed" words is getting bigger by the day. This affects how people talk, how they frame their issues, how they express themselves. This directly affects their work. There is less and less distinction between professional disagreement and personal slight. In fact, people deliberately blur the lines so they can present their business ineptitude as some sort of Dreyfuss witchhunt against their glorious selves. As an ordinary person slaving in an office so you can pay your bills and raise your mediocre children, you may actually not want to say something that may be construed as "offensive" even though it could be a legitimate complaint, related to your actual work. This leads to self-censored, mind-numbing normalization. People just swallow their pride, suppress their problems, focus on the paycheck, and just play the life-draining corporate game. Or they have an early stroke. Read more Also: Google Keeps Pushing ChromeOS and Android Closer Together