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Gaming

Games: Desert Strike, Stellaris: Federations, Pipe Push Paradise, Deep Sky Derelicts, Vaporum: Lockdown, Vagrus - The Riven Realms

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Gaming
  • Megacopter: Blades of the Goddess is like a wild sci-fi Desert Strike

    Desert Strike, oh hell yes, that's a game I put tons of hours into on the Sega Mega Drive. Now Pizza Bear Games have taken that same helicopter action and put a wild sci-fi spin on it with Megacopter: Blades of the Goddess.

    It's also taking ideas from Jungle/Urban Strike, Choplifter and 80s/90s TV shows like Airwolf and Knight Rider too. No exact release date on this one other than sometime this year but I'm totally pumped by this.

  • Stellaris: Federations and the huge free 'Verne' content update are out

    Paradox Interactive and Paradox Development Studio have today released the Stellaris: Federations expansion along with the free 2.6.0 'Verne' content update for everyone.

    The biggest addition, is obviously, the rework of Federations. You can form new types of Federations, each with unique passive effects, and level them up to unlock perks. Customize them further through the new Federation Laws. Check out the shiny release trailer:

  • Sweet puzzle game 'Pipe Push Paradise' is free to claim for a week over on itch

    Continuing to hunt around for special deals to help anyone during the Coronavirus, the next up is the puzzle game Pipe Push Paradise which you can claim free for the next week.

    Developed by Corey Martin, they announced this on their Twitter and since they're doing it through itch.io you get to keep it after you claim it.

    The "story" is quite amusing: you arrive on an island with "a hero's calling", as the island's plumber (your uncle) isn't available and so you're tasked with getting the water running again because apparently it runs in the family as the island's inhabitants "could all really use a shower". You will be pushing, flipping and rolling pipes across the island. It's thoroughly challenging too, while simple in style and presentation it's a devil when it comes to the actual puzzles.

  • Deep Sky Derelicts: Definitive Edition announced for release on March 24

    1C Entertainment and Snowhound Games have announced that Deep Sky Derelicts is getting a Definitive Edition on March 24 that will bundle the DLC and upgrade the base game for everyone.

    From the press release: "Experience Deep Sky Derelicts in its ultimate, definitive edition, which combines the overhauled base game with its two DLCs: New Prospects and Station Life. Both additions bring new gameplay features, character upgrades, home base improvements, monsters, missions and much more!"

  • Vaporum: Lockdown delayed into later this year as the game has grown

    Vaporum: Lockdown is a prequel to the 3D real-time dungeon crawler Vaporum that was pretty great, and it's now delayed but it's not all bad news.

    They're now saying it's moved from Q1 to sometime in Q2 this year, meaning it should be out before the end of June. Not exactly a long delay but they have a good enough reason: it's got bigger. They said it's grown into a "fully fledged, standalone game that expands on everything that made Vaporum good, and also brings a lot of new, fresh ideas" which is costing more time. Another reason is the Coronavirus, as their studio has been in their own "lockdown" since earlier in March with all of them now working from home.

  • Deep fantasy RPG-strategy hybrid 'Vagrus - The Riven Realms' has hit another funding milestone

    Vagrus - The Riven Realms continues smashing through their Open Access funding goals on Fig, this special hybrid of Crowdfunding and Early Access together seems to be paying off. This is where you can fund it, get access right away and all money goes towards specific features.

Games: vkBasalt, Proton GE, 3dSen, GOG

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  • vkBasalt the Vulkan post processing layer for Linux has a new release up

    Need to add some fancy effects to your Linux games? vkBasalt can help with that and a brand new release is now up. Quite a small tidying up release this time with 0.3.1 going out yesterday.

    Small in number of features perhaps but still a very useful update, especially now with a key to turn effects on and off during runtime which is incredibly cool to see in action. This also makes taking comparison screenshots now super-simple to do. Also in this release is the ability to control the amount of debug output, an updated reshade shader compiler and if a game uses the newer "vkGetDeviceQueue2" it fixes some potential issues.

  • Proton GE 5.4 released for Steam Play on Linux with Warframe gamepad fixes

    Proton GE, the custom-built fork of Proton for Steam Play that adds in numerous extra tweaks and fixes has another release now available.

    Confused? Wine is a compatibility layer that can help to run Windows apps/games on Linux. Valve have their own version called Proton which is included with the Steam Client on Linux with Steam Play, and Proton GE is a special version of it built by user "GloriousEggroll". Why use it? You might find certain games need adjustments not currently in the official Proton.

  • 3dSen NES emulator gives classics some 3D depth and it's pretty awesome

    3dSen, an upcoming Emulator currently in development is now going through some Beta testing. Unlike some other Emulators, it doesn't just support old games, it aims to redefine them.

    Allowing you to play the classics with an entirely new twist, in 3D with some depth to them and the results are pretty astonishing. The growing list of supported games is impressive, considering it needs a lot of tweaking to get them all right. It supports Linux too, and it's made with Unity so it works quite well already.

  • The GOG Spring Sale is on - giving away the 'Witcher Goodies Collection' for 48 hours

    DRM-free store GOG has launched a huge Spring Sale with thousand of games going real cheap. They've also put the Witcher Goodies Collection on a 48 hour giveaway which has art, books, soundtracks and such (no games in it).

Games: Them's Fightin' Herds, Rise to Ruins, Primal Light

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  • Indie fighting game "Them's Fightin' Herds" releasing in April, Linux coming later

    Them's Fightin' Herds has been in Early Access for a while, and they confirmed a Linux port during their original crowdfunding campaign on IndieGoGo and now a release date has been set in an announcement.

    For Windows, it's going to leave Early Access on April 2nd with the first chapter of their Story Mode which actually sounds like quite a lot of fun. If you weren't aware, Them's Fightin' Herds has a cast design done by acclaimed cartoon producer Lauren Faust (known for My Little Pony).

  • Village-building god sim strategy 'Rise to Ruins' passes 1.5 million dollars net revenue

    One of my favourite pixel-art indie games, Rise to Ruins, has now officially passed the 1.5 million dollar net revenue mark showing that indie games can really sell well.

    Writing about it and showing it off on Twitter, the developer Raymond Doerr announced it across the weekend. Some clarifications were also posted, as the $1.5M is before Valve takes their 30% cut so it's more likely around 1,050,000 (one million, fifty thousand). However, you also then have to take into account income tax and so on. So, the true figure after ends up quite a bit lower but it still shows how an indie developer can do well overall.

  • Primal Light is an action-platformer that has some seriously good art - releasing on July 9

    Primal Light, built with the free and open source Godot Engine, is an action-platformer with pixel artwork that looks divine like some of the classics on Amiga and it's releasing on July 9. Linux support is also confirmed to be available right away.

Games: Linux at AMD, Rocket League, Wrath: Aeon of Ruin, Carrion: When Is The Horror Game Releasing

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  • AMD looks to court Linux gamers by making its GPU driver even better

    AMD is hiring a new Lead Linux Kernel Developer to work on its AMDGPU driver for Linux.

    The position will be based at AMD’s campus in Austin, Texas, and the lead developer will focus on designing and maintaining the graphics driver for Linux.

    [...]

    AMD’s open source unified Linux graphics driver is already well-liked within the community, and we’ve seen a good deal of positive feedback as to its stability and compatibility – which as you may know, represents something of a contrast compared to the situation with Windows.

    Meanwhile Nvidia’s Linux driver is a proprietary affair, and not ideal for everyone (such as those with older GPUs, for example), while open source alternatives like Nouveau are in a rougher state, and hampered by a lack of documentation as we’ve discussed in the past (although Nvidia does seem to be making efforts to remedy this).

  • Rocket League’s Last Update for Mac and Linux Releases March 10

    Rocket League developer Psyonix detailed what is coming in the March update for the game, which will also be the final update for the Mac and Linux versions.

    The update for all platforms changes a few default settings for the camera and controls, adds three Dynamic Range Presets for the game’s HDR Audio, and features the ability to trade in five Blueprints of the same series and rarity for a higher rarity blueprint in return.

    The March update also disables all online features for the Mac and Linux versions, such as matchmaking and in-game purchases.

  • Wrath: Aeon of Ruin engine source code released - a quick look

    The developers of Wrath: Aeon of Ruin, an FPS game built on the Darkplaces engine, have seemingly been a bit sneaky and released the source code to their engine fork with little fanfare on GitHub.

    The source code release was to be expected, since Wrath's engine is based on Darkplaces, itself a fork of the Quake engine under the GPL license. Under the GPL, derivative works must also be licensed as GPL and the source code must be provided to anyone that asks. Originally the source code was to be released publicly after the Early Access period had ended but it was probably easier to make a public repository now rather than address individual source code requests.

  • Carrion: When Is The Horror Game Releasing, Which Monsters Can You Play

    In Mac, it requires minimum OSX 10.12+ and in Linux, Ubuntu 18.04+. All the Operating Systems require a 64-bit processor.

If you're self-isolating and in need, here's a bunch of awesome free Linux games

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Gaming

It's a scary time, with more restrictions being announced regularly across the world to prevent the spread of Coronavirus. Here's a list of some really great free games for Linux if you find yourself stuck with self-isolation and low on funds.

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MangoHud, the excellent Linux overlay layer adds OpenGL support in addition to Vulkan

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A huge update for the Linux overlay layer, MangoHud, as it can now work with OpenGL games in addition to Vulkan making it many times more useful and awesome.

Quick reminder: MangoHud can show useful information on top of games like: FPS, RAM/VRAM use, disk reads, frame timings, temperatures, it can benchmark and a whole lot more.

Today, they released MangoHud 0.3.0 and the headline feature is it now supporting OpenGL so it's not locked to Vulkan now. Additionally you can now just use the "mangohud" command to load either the OpenGL or Vulkan HUD and "mangohud.x86" for 32bit OpenGL. So try it you can just do "mangohud vkcube" or "mangohud glxgears" and "MANGOHUD=1" also still works for Vulkan.

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Also: Counter-Strike: Global Offensive hits over 1 million online, Steam breaks user records again

Games: Valve's Steam (DRM) in Clear Linux, GPU Performance and Various Games

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  • Intel's Clear Linux Has Code In Place To Begin Handling Proprietary Packages Like Chrome & Steam

    One of the most frequent critiques of Intel's Clear Linux distribution has been its lackluster support in dealing with proprietary/third-party packages like the Google Chrome web browser and Valve's Steam gaming client. Since last summer, Clear Linux has been working on their third-party packaging support with their unique "bundles" system, but not much has been heard on the matter since.

    A Clear Linux user this week finally brought up the topic again of this third-party/proprietary package (bundle) handling for Clear Linux. The response from Intel Fellow Arjan van de Ven is that the code is actually now in place albeit lacks documentation and testing.

  • New Linux Patch Will Significantly Boost Ice Lake GPU Performance
  • Wheely World is an unusual top-down scrolling racer available on itch.io for Linux

    Quite a surprise too, honestly, I wasn't expecting it to be as good as it is from the screenshots. A video and static shots for a game like this, just don't do it enough justice you really have to play it. A simple idea, the world scrolls up and you have to drive and boost your way around obstacles. There's an Endless Runner mode to chase that high score or total mayhem in the Royale Mode with tons of other vehicles all cramped into the scrolling ever-changing map.

  • GOverlay, the open source Linux app for managing overlays is progressing quickly

    GOverlay, the open source Linux application which currently works to help you really easily configure MangoHud (more on that here) has progressed quickly since the initial release.

    With today's 0.2 release the developer, Benjamim Góis, is calling it a "Beta" as they feel it has come along enough for more people to try it out. Lots of enhancements have been made too including a quick check-all button to turn all options on, an initial implementation of a HUD preview, an explanation of the Vsync options when you hover, a notification when the config is saved and more.

  • Deep Space Battle Simulator has two teams face off in a big space battle now on Linux

    Deep Space Battle Simulator, an Early Access first-person online team-based game about two capital-ships facing off is now available on Linux. It's quite fresh, only becoming available on March 6.

    It's a little like a small competitive version of PULSAR: Lost Colony, with you all running around controlling different stations on the ship. You start by customizing your capital ship with different turrets, small fighters and upgrades. Then once it begins, all hell breaks loose as both teams have full control over their ship. All in first-person (unless you're the pilot) so you can run from one section to the next, grab a gun and take down any boarding party from the enemy team.

  • Have you played Slayaway Camp? A killer-puzzle game that's genuinely good fun

    Slayaway Camp might not be a new game but it's something I only jumped into recently and it's a really great puzzle game. In it you control Skullface, a psychotic slasher bent on slaughtering people at camp.

    Not the nicest of settings for a puzzle game, it's a little (okay a lot) violent with decapitating, squashing, axe-to-the-face and all sorts of bloody murder going on. You can tweak the amount of gore and such but it's honestly pretty amusing with the blocky graphical style. The developer says it's actually a "diabolical logic game that also happens to be a bloody tribute to eighties trash horror" and it fits that quite nicely.

  • If you think you know pain you haven't played Devader - check out their new trailer

    Devader is one of my favourites released last year that flew under the radar of most. A twin-stick shooter with action that takes place in a single map, with enemies so varied it will make your head spin.

    In my post about the original release, I mentioned how it's one not to be missed and it truly is. I've played my fair share of top-down twin-stick shoot 'em ups over the years, coming from the Sega Mega Drive, Amiga and so on but nothing quite compares to the overall chaos in Devader.

  • Ridiculously fun party-platformer 'Ultimate Chicken Horse' has a big update and sale on now

    Ultimate Chicken Horse, an amusing name and a very funny game to play with others locally and online. A big update and sale just went live for this party-platformer where you build the level as you play.

    Joining the roster this time is a new character, a Snake on a skateboard. There's also two brand new levels, 4 new blocks (beehives, cannons, flamethrowers, and one-way gates) and they also did some adjustments to other features throughout the game to improve the flow. The Free Play Mode has more paintbrush sizes, a new Randomize" button on the modifiers page can give you some extra chaos, a Czech localization is now available and plenty of bug fixing.

Games: One Step From Eden, Stadia, Humble Bundle and More

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  • Frantic deck-building action in 'One Step From Eden' looks awesome in the latest footage

    One Step From Eden from Thomas Moon Kang (developer) and Humble Bundle (publisher) is releasing quite soon on March 26, to get your attention they just released a bunch of new footage.

    If you've not seen our previous articles on it, it's a real-time action-strategy game with deck-building. Inspired by some of Megaman Battle Network, the developer decided to fill the void no other game could fill by making one themselves. Combining strategic placement as you move across a board in real-time, you cast spells from your ability cards to take down enemies on the opposite side blending genres together into something unique.

  • Stylish 3D escape-puzzle game 'Mystic Escape - Diary of a Prisoner' coming soon to Linux

    SunRay Games recently announced that their stylish looking 3D puzzle game with an escape-room theme will be releasing soon with Linux support.

  • Legend of Keepers: Career of a Dungeon Master now launching on March 19

    Goblinz Studio have now announced that Legend of Keepers: Career of a Dungeon Master will now enter Early Access next week on March 19. Previously they said March without an exact date but it appears this is sooner than they originally planned, as they said that "Early Access has been brought forward".

    It's supposed to be like a reverse dungeon crawler, you're the manager of the dungeon and it's your job to prevent heroes getting through your defences. Place traps, hire monsters and watch the turn-based battles when they collide. Goblinz Studio said they were inspired by so many titles to create it including elements of Darkest Dungeon, Slay the Spire, Dungeon Keeper, Final Fantasy, Chroma Squad and more.

  • AMD announce a big sale going for their 3rd Gen Ryzen desktop processors

    From now until the end of March, AMD have cut the price of some popular 3rd Gen Ryzen desktop processors across multiple stores with discounts in many countries.

    If you're looking to build a new Linux gaming PC or general Linux desktop, this might just save you some essential funds to perhaps put elsewhere and AMD's Ryzen processors do pack quite a punch in performance. Our current livestreaming rig (follow us on Twitch here) is powered by a AMD Ryzen and it's a real workhorse.

  • Ubisoft games head to Stadia starting with The Division 2, The Crew 2 and Monopoly

    Stadia are now started to finally build up their game collection, as multiple Ubisoft titles will be appearing this month including The Division 2, The Crew 2 and Monopoly as confirmed by Google. Let's have another round-up of news for the Linux-powered game streaming service.

  • The Humble Just Drive Bundle is live with Linux titles Road Redemption and DiRT 4

    Got the need for speed? Humble Bundle are doing another of their fancy bundles and this time the focus is on racing games with the Humble Just Drive Bundle.

    On the Linux side, in terms of numbers it's not a great turnout. Sadly, we just don't have many of the bigger racers supported. I'll note how each game seems to run on Steam Play Proton too, if you want a simple guide for Steam Play Proton—look here.

Games: Amoeba Battle, Two Point Hospital: Off The Grid, Caffeine: Victoria's Legacy, Flat Earths! and More

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  • Amoeba Battle is a real-time strategy game on a microscopic scale with a Battle Royale

    Amoeba Battle: Microscopic RTS Action, a title that's somewhat a mouthful and it was a surprise when it released on Steam earlier this month coming out of nowhere. Note: The developer, Grab Games, sent a key.

    Unlike many other RTS titles, you don't build up a base in Amoeba Battle and you're not controlling humans either. Instead, you take charge of and direct around microscopic life competing for dominance. It's weirdly cute and ridiculously inviting, with a quite beautiful watercolour style to everything that captured my heart instantly as a big RTS fan.

  • Two Point Hospital is going green in the 'Off The Grid' DLC this month

    Releasing on March 18, Two Point Hospital: Off The Grid from Two Point Studios and SEGA will take your hospital building to somewhere quite different.

    Much like previous DLC releases there will be new maps to building through and some new illnesses. They said it will have a total of 35 new illnesses, although only 9 of these will have new visuals and you will also be using brand new treatment rooms too. The weird and wonderful ailments people catch in Two Point Hospital is definitely one of the highlights, so more is welcome.

  • Caffeine: Victoria's Legacy is a really good looking choice-rich fantasy Visual Novel

    Currently in Early Access, Caffeine: Victoria's Legacy is a fantasy Visual Novel with a Steampunk theme and it's going to be releasing in full on March 20 with Linux support.

  • Flat Earths! is an absolutely brilliant free multiplayer pure-chaos death-match out now

    Gravity? What gravity? Flat Earths! is a free local multiplayer (plus support for Remote Play Together) game of absolute pure chaos and it's really good fun too.

    "Are you one of those ROUND-EARTHERS? Do you think the sun isn't hung from a bale of twine cast down from the star-heavens? Well then, don't bother trying this couch-multiplaying, trident-hurling, death-o-gasm of an aquatic mammal simulation."

    Flat Earths! was originally made for the Ludem Dare 38 Game Jam back in 2017, which had "A Small World" as the theme and it's a bit of a joke at people who think the Earth is flat. This is the "Flat Earths Deluxe!" version upgraded and re-written to improve it based on the original. Pretty sweet to see a developer go back to an old game like that, and keep it free.

  • Deserted, a stylized narrative 3D action adventure with fast paced strategic combat

    Deserted looks pretty awesome. With an atmosphere and visual style inspired by Another World (or 'Out of This World' to some), it will be releasing in Early Access later this year.

  • LoadLibrary: Support For Loading Windows DLLs On Linux

    A Google researcher has been developing "LoadLibrary" as a means of being able to load Windows Dynamic Link Libraries (DLLs) that in turn can be used by native Linux code.

    LoadLibrary isn't a replacement for Wine or the like but is intended to allow Windows DLL libraries to be loaded that can then be accessed by native Linux code, not trying to run Windows programs and the like on Linux but simply loading the libraries.

Games: Steam Play Proton, Neon Noodles, StarCrossed, Minigalaxy and Lazr

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  • Steam Play Proton 5.0-4 is up fixing Origin, GTA V, Denuvo and more

    Another new release of Steam Play's Proton software is up and while small in number of changes, it's quite a mighty update overall.

    Looking to get started with Steam Play on Linux? Have no idea what it is? Be sure to check our previous beginners guide for some tips and explanations. We'll be keeping that up to date with any major changes.

  • Meal making automation in the Zach-like 'Neon Noodles' feels great

    Neon Noodles released into Early Access a few months ago and since then, I've been directing my robotic chefs around madly trying to improve on their speed and it's quite engrossing. Note: Key from the dev.

    The developer, Vivid Helix, is aiming for a Zachtronics-like experience with games like Opus Magnum (a personal favourite) and so far it does seem like they're succeeding with their aim. Your design and build your own automated kitchen, placing down various logic blocks in a stylish top-down style where you see everything happening.

  • StarCrossed has crazy looking action with a magical girl aesthetic and it's out for Linux now

    StarCrossed, an action-arcade game with a magical girl aesthetic and a cooperative twist has now officially released for Linux shortly after the Windows version became available last month.

    It plays something a little like a classic arcade shooter, except your only weapon is a bright star that you need to bounce between you and your partner to keep the momentum going. A very fun and sweet twist, something like a ridiculously action-packed co-op pong with bright and inviting visuals.

  • A sweet new build of 'Minigalaxy' is out for easy GOG game managing on Linux

    No GOG Galaxy? Not so much of a problem right now with handy open source apps like Minigalaxy and a big new release is up.

    The application has a simple purpose allowing you to login to your GOG account, download and install your games without hassle. It's getting closer towards that goal now with this latest release cleaning it up nicely and adding some useful features.

  • Lazr, the cyberpunk platformer with a love of cloth physics sim has a massive demo update

    Lazr is a cyberpunk platform that's quickly shaping up to be like nothing else, where parts of the level and enemies are made from simulated cloth and a massive demo update is out.

    This comes after the recent Kickstarter funding, which only just managed to scrape past the finishing line due to a bunch of cancellations right at the end. Pleasing to see such a unique take on the action-platformer progressing onward.

    What's new? There's a new boss and boss level, a bunch of major art upgrades, the Hovertank boss got a big upgrade, an adaptive camera is in, laser will cut through cloth more "consistently", lots of new NPCs, a redesign of most levels, grenades are easier to see and hear too.

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