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Gaming

Games: Albion Online, Rosewater, Terminal Phase, The Coma 2

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Gaming
  • Albion Online has the 'biggest-ever' update now live named 'Queen'

    The Queen update for the MMO Albion Online is live, what Sandbox Interactive claim is the "biggest-ever". This is the eighth post-release content update for Albion Online, with a focus on a major rework of the Outlands continent.

    A new Hideouts system sounds quite fun, giving Guilds a place to build a secret underground base in the open-world black zones (full PvP). You will see see a lot more open-world PvP battles with a new territory claiming system, new Elite enemy NPCs to fight in Elite Randomized Dungeons, a new skin customization system, simplified and streamlined Item Power progression and more.

  • Rosewater, a wild west adventure set in the world of Lamplight City is coming to Linux next year

    Grundislav Games along with Application Systems Heidelberg have announced Rosewater, a wild west adventure set in the world of their previous game Lamplight City.

    "It's been several years since Harley Leger left New Bretagne and headed west, hoping to leave the past behind and make her way as a freelance writer. After arriving in the sleepy border town of Rosewater, a seemingly trivial assignment for the local paper leads to the hunt for a missing man's fortune--and the story of the century."

  • Terminal Phase – A Space Shooter Game That Runs In Terminal

    Today, I came across an interesting CLI game called Terminal Space, a space shooter game that runs in your Terminal. It is somewhat similar to a mobile game named Space Impact that usually came bundled with several old Nokia phones. I have played Space Impact game on my Nokia basic model phone several years ago. It was really interesting and addictive game. If you’ve played Space Impact, Terminal Space might look very familiar. It is an open source project released under GPLv3 and is written in Racket programming language. In this brief guide, I am going to show you how to install and play Terminal Phase space shooter game in Terminal on Linux.

  • The Coma 2: Vicious Sisters has a new trailer ahead of the full release next week

    Leaving Early Access on January 28, the Korean-made survival-horror The Coma 2: Vicious Sisters has a new trailer.

    While it's technically part of a series, you don't need any amiliarity with the story from The Coma: Recut. Vicious Sisters follows a new protagonist, Mina Park and her first experience in the Shadow Realm. However, if you've played the previous game you might spot some familiar faces.

Games: Planetary Sanitations Inc., Terminal Phase, The Humble Europa Universalis IV Bundle and Half-Life

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Gaming
  • Planetary Sanitations Inc, a free and open source world exploration mecha roguelike

    A game I completely forgot to cover some time ago is Planetary Sanitations Inc., a free and open source roguelike that has you exploring different worlds. As you explore, you piece together a mech unit from various modules, each of which can be destroyed individually.

    Thankfully, even though I forgot about it there was a big update to it recently which popped up in my feed so here we are. It's another game made with Godot Engine, with the source code available up on GitLab. The recent update to it brings in some first steps towards polishing the experience with a proper starting menu and a small tutorial.

  • Terminal Phase, a space shooter you can play in a Terminal window

    Ever wanted to play a space shooter in your Terminal window? Well, now you can with Terminal Phase which was announced recently.

    The developer, Christopher Lemmer Webber, is a name some of you might know as they're involved in the ActivityPub specification and they're the co-founder of GNU MediaGoblin amongst other things. Terminal Phase was actually released as a result of hitting a goal on their Patreon page, funding their work in the free software community.

  • The Humble Europa Universalis IV Bundle is live ready to take your time away

    That's a pretty ridiculously good deal, considering just how much playable content is included with all of that together. As usual though, there's higher tiers as well.

    If you pay more than the average there's also: Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man, Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum, Europa Universalis IV: The Cossacks, Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense and Europa Universalis IV - El Dorado.

  • The original Half-Life games are now free to play until Half-Life: Alyx launches

    Valve have made their original Half-Life titles all the way up to Half-Life 2: Episode Two free to play for a few months.

    This is to build up excitement for their VR-only title, Half-Life: Alyx, which releases in March. Which we still don't know if it will support Linux or not, I'll be speaking to Valve more about that closer to the time. It likely all depends on the state of SteamVR at the time.

Wine 5.0 Released

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Software
Gaming

  • Wine 5.0 Released

    The Wine team is proud to announce that the stable release Wine 5.0 is now available.

    This release represents a year of development effort and over 7,400 individual changes. It contains a large number of improvements that are listed in the release notes below. The main highlights are:

    - Builtin modules in PE format.
    - Multi-monitor support.
    - XAudio2 reimplementation.
    - Vulkan 1.1 support.

    This release is dedicated to the memory of Józef Kucia, who passed away in August 2019 at the young age of 30. Józef was a major contributor to Wine's Direct3D implementation, and the lead developer of the vkd3d project. His skills and his kindness are sorely missed by all of us.

  • Wine release 5.0
    What's new in Wine 5.0
    ======================
    
    
    *** PE modules
    
    - Most modules are built in PE format (Portable Executable, the
      Windows binary format) instead of ELF when the MinGW compiler is
      available. This helps various copy protection schemes that check
      that the on-disk and in-memory contents of system modules are
      identical.
    
    - The actual PE binaries are copied into the Wine prefix instead of
      the fake DLL files. This makes the prefix look more like a real
      Windows installation, at the cost of some extra disk space.
    
    - Modules that have been converted to PE can use standard wide-char C
      functions, as well as wide-char character constants like L"abc".
      This makes the code easier to read.
    
    - Not all modules have been converted to PE yet; this is an ongoing
      process that will continue during the Wine 5.x development series.
    
    - The Wine C runtime is updated to support linking to MinGW-compiled
      binaries; it is used by default instead of the MinGW runtime when
      building DLLs.
    
    
    *** Graphics
    
    - Multiple display adapters and monitors are properly supported,
      including dynamic configuration changes.
    
    - The Vulkan driver supports up to version 1.1.126 of the Vulkan spec.
    
    - The WindowsCodecs library is able to convert more bitmap formats,
      including palette-indexed formats.
    
    
    *** Direct3D
    
    - Fullscreen Direct3D applications inhibit the screensaver.
    
    - DXGI swapchain presents inform the application when the
      corresponding window is minimized. This typically allows
      applications to reduce CPU usage while minimized, and is in some
      cases required to allow the application window to be restored again.
    
    - Switching between fullscreen and windowed modes using the standard
      Alt+Enter combination is implemented for DXGI applications.
    
    - The following features are implemented for Direct3D 12 applications:
      - Switching between fullscreen and windowed.
      - Changing display modes.
      - Scaled presents.
      - Swap intervals.
      These features were previously already implemented for earlier
      versions of the Direct3D API.
    
    - The handling of various edge cases is improved. Among others:
      - Out of range reference values for the alpha and stencil tests.
      - Sampling 2D resources with 3D samplers and vice versa.
      - Drawing with mapped textures and buffers.
      - Usage of invalid DirectDraw clipper objects.
      - Creating Direct3D devices on invalid Windows, like the desktop
        window.
      - Viewports with a minimum Z larger than or equal to the maximum Z.
      - Resources bound through both shader-resource views and
        render-target or depth-stencil views at the same time.
      - Blits between formats with and without alpha components.
      Since well-behaved applications don't rely on these edge cases, they
      typically only affect one or two applications each. There are
      nevertheless quite a number of them.
    
    - Dirty texture regions are tracked more accurately for Direct3D 8 and 9
      texture uploads.
    
    - Uploads of S3TC-compressed 3D textures require less address space.
      Since 3D textures can be potentially large, and address space
      exhaustion is a concern for 32-bit applications, S3TC-compressed 3D
      textures are uploaded per-slice, instead of in a single upload.
    
    - The ID3D11Multithread interface is implemented.
    
    - Various lighting calculation fixes and improvements for older
      DirectDraw applications have been made.
    
    - Limited support for blits across swapchains is implemented.
    
    - More shader reflection APIs are implemented.
    
    - The wined3d CPU blitter can handle compressed source resources.
      Support for compressed destination resources was already implemented
      in a previous release.
    
  • Wine 5.0 Released With Big Improvements For Gaming, Countless Application Fixes

    Wine 5.0 has been released as stable as the annual timed release of this software for running Windows games and applications on Linux, macOS, and other platforms.

    Wine 5.0 is another big step forward in allowing modern Windows applications to run well particularly on Linux and macOS. Thanks to CodeWeavers and funding by Valve for their work on the Wine-based Proton downstream, there are many game fixes that have been incorporated over the past year especially. So Windows games are in better shape plus there is Vulkan 1.1 support, FAudio integration, and countless other improvements.

  • The bottle for Wine 5.0 has officially been popped open as it's out now

    The day has arrived, the official stable release of Wine 5.0 has arrived bringing thousands of improvements and a bunch of new features.

    [...]

    Wine 5.0 as a release is also being dedicated to the memory of Józef Kucia, a major contributor to Wine's Direct3D implementation and he lead developer of the vkd3d project who sadly passed away in August 2019.

AMD Radeon RX 5600 XT Linux Gaming Performance

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Gaming

As announced back at CES, the Radeon RX 5600 XT is being launched as the newest Navi graphics card to fill the void between the original RX 5700 series and the budget RX 5500 XT. The Radeon RX 5600 XT graphics cards are beginning to ship today at $279+ USD price point and offers great Linux support but with one last minute -- and hopefully very temporary -- caveat.

The Radeon RX 5600 XT features 36 compute units, 2304 stream processors, up to 7.19 TFLOPs, a 1375MHz game clock, 6GB of GDDR6 video memory, and a total board power of around 150 Watts. The Radeon RX 5600 XT like the rest of the RDNA/Navi line-up is a 7nm part, supports PCI Express 4.0, and other common RDNA features.

Read more

Games: Steam Client, Slay the Spire and DASH (Danger Action Speed Heroes)

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Gaming

  • New stable Steam Client up, fixing Steam Survey and NFS mounts on Linux, plus other Steam news

    The first stable update for the Steam Client of 2020, pulling in all the recent changes from the Beta versions.

    For Linux users, it's a good one. It fixes the Steam Library not working on some NFS mounts, fixes a crash while prepare the Hardware Survey and some tweaks to the Steam Runtime system info gathering to only run when needed.

  • If you enjoy Slay the Spire you should try the opt-in Beta for a better experience

    Now that the huge update to Slay the Spire is live adding in The Watcher as the fourth character, Mega Crit Games have also updated their opt-in game engine upgrade Beta.

    For a while now, they've had a "libgdx199" Beta available on Steam to improve the foundation the game is built upon. However, that's only compatible with save files from the previous major build. A new opt-in Beta "libgdx199.main" has been put up, which is compatible with the current version of the game.

  • Feeling extra competitive? The creative platformer DASH now has online multiplayer

    DASH (Danger Action Speed Heroes), a platformer that's built for people who love creating and competing across user-made levels just recently expanded with a big new online multiplayer mode.

    It's one thing to create levels, play those made by others and see the Ghost of players from their times. It's a whole different experience to run, jump and fail with others right there with you. That's exactly what the new update to DASH will offer. This Competitive Run game mode might be the first of multiple, with it being a big all-for-one mode too.

Games: Chromebooks, Lucky Lanterns in Rocket League, Crumble

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Gaming
  • Thanks to Linux, Google and Valve are Bringing Steam to Chromebooks

    In yet another win for desktop Linux, Google and Steam are about to up the chromebook gaming field.

    On many supported chromebooks, it is already possible to run Linux applications on the chromebook. For certain user types, this has been a real boon. However, for gamers, not so much. That is about to change, thanks to a joint effort by Google and Valve.

    According to Kan Liu, Director of Product Management for Google Chrome OS, Steam is coming to chromebooks. What is Steam? Steam is a digital video game distribution service, offered by Valve, originally released in 2003 as a means for Valve to provide automatic updates for their own line of games. Eventually the service was expanded to include third-party publishers and is now one of the largest digital distribution systems for games.

  • Lucky Lanterns event is now live in Rocket League and there's a brand new arena

    Psyonix have put the Lucky Lanterns event live now in Rocket League. No update is needed today, as one went out a few days ago to prepare for it.

    Working just like previous events, giving you a special currency for playing which you can then redeem for special customization items. This time around though, there's no special game mode to play. Instead, there's an entirely new arena called The Forbidden Temple Arena.

  • Amusing sticky-tongue physics platformer 'Crumble' has a big demo update, now with multiplayer

    A rolling-ball physics platformer where you move like slime, jump like a bouncy ball and swing using a sticky tongue like a weird version of Spider Man. Crumble has a lot of fun ideas going for it and a big demo update is out now with co-op.

    Covered a few times here now, as I've absolutely loved following the progress on this one. The developer posts a lot of upcoming bits for it on Twitter, and it looks like they have some pretty amusing plans for Crumble. Including a portal that turns you into a shadow that completely warps the gameplay.

Games: Tower Of God: One Wish, A.N.N.E and More

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Gaming
  • Tower Of God: One Wish, a nice casual match-3 game released recently

    A genre Linux surprisingly doesn't have a huge selection in is Match 3 puzzle games, thankfully if you love these casual games a new one is out with Tower Of God: One Wish.

  • The charming platformer & space shooter hybrid A.N.N.E to get a huge 1.0 update in May

    Gamesbymo have announced that A.N.N.E, the crowdfunded mixture of metroidvania style platforming with space shooter elements will get a big 1.0 update on May 20. See Also: Some previous thoughts here.

    While it hasn't received much attention after being released on Steam last year, following a Kickstarter campaign in 2013, they have been making progress on it. Slow progress though, as it sounds like they don't have much money left as written in the announcement they "had to get back to a barebone team" but it's not all bad news. The good news is that a big content update was announced and it will be out on May 20, although they're not sure if that will also end Early Access.

  • RetroArch to have the emulation 'Cores' as DLC when it releases on Steam, plus big updates

    The team behind RetroArch, the open source and cross platform frontend/framework for emulators (and a lot more like open source game engines), have stated their plans for handling the various emulators it works with for the Steam release.

    While there's now no exact date for the Steam release, after being delayed from last year, work has continued on preparing for it. Part of this is dealing with the legal situation, since the application is licensed under the GPL, there are certain rules they have to follow.

  • Recent updates to Littlewood added a lot of bugs and a nervous looking Sea Monster

    Probably one of the most charming games I've ever played, Littlewood, just constantly gets bigger and more sweet with each update.

    What is Littlewood? A game set after the world has been saved, there's no fighting here as it's time to rebuild. It's a peaceful and relaxing little building, crafting and farming sim from developer Sean Young. Currently in Early Access, each month seems to bring in a huge new update.

    December, for example, added in a massive update focused on Fishing. You can now meet Captain Georgie (who appears to be some sort of Monkey) and go out on their boat for some rare fish. It can take a while to be able to do this though, you need Level 30 in Fishing before they let you go.

  • OpenRA for classic Westwood RTS games has a new build in need of testing

    What is OpenRA? It's an open source game engine that recreates and modernizes the classic Command & Conquer real time strategy games including Command & Conquer, Red Alert, Dune 2000 and with Tiberian Sun in progress. It's awesome!

  • Obversion, a puzzle game from a former Google developer releases next week

    Former Google developer Adrian Marple quit to become an indie developer, with the puzzle game Obversion being their first title which is releasing next week.

    Marple said "the journey through the levels of Obversion is a coalescence of striking environments, philosophical quotes, geometric satisfaction, and intricately woven puzzles" and that if you've played games like Portal you should feel right at home.

  • DragonEvo, a trading card game mixed with RPG elements you can play in your browser

    Oh how I do love deck-building, card games and strategy stuffs. If you do too, you might want to take a look over at DragonEvo. Fully cross-platform, as DragonEvo is not a traditional desktop game. It's browser-based, meaning you can play it on most things that have something resembling Firefox or Chrome.

    While we don't usually cover many browser-based games, DragonEvo stands out as it's actually quite good and it certainly has some unusual mechanics with how you play cards. Strategy is the key to victory, careful planning and card placement—not a random generator.

Free/Libre Games: Terminal Phase 1.0 and VVVVVV

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Gaming
  • Christopher Allan Webber: Terminal Phase 1.0

    I'm pleased to announce that Terminal Phase, a space shooter game you can play in your terminal, has achieved version 1.0. The game is completely playable and is a fun game (well, at least a number of playtesters told me they thought it was fun). It includes two levels (one of which is more balanced than the other), and more content is on its way (1.0 isn't the end!). You can see it being played above in cool-retro-term but it works in all sorts of terminals, including gnome-terminal and etc.

    I also released a video recently (archive.org mirror) of me doing a live playtest of the game and also showing off how to make new levels and program new enemies (which serves as kind of an introduction, but probably not the best one, to Spritely Goblins).

    Terminal Phase was actually a reward for hitting the $500/mo milestone on my Patreon account, which we achieved a little over a week ago. I aimed to get 1.0 out the door by midnight on Wednesday but I actually released it a couple of hours later, closer to 2:30am, because I was trying to make the credits look cool:

    Terminal Phase Credits

    I think I succeeded, right? Maybe you would like your name in there; you can still do so by selecting a tier on my Patreon account. I released the game as FOSS, so whether you donate or not, you can still reap the benefits. But I figure making the credits look cool and putting peoples' names in there would be a good way of making people feel motivated. And there are more releases on the way; I'll be adding to this now and then and releasing more stuff occasionally. In fact you may notice the cool parallax scrolling starfield in the gif at the top of this post; I added that after 1.0. I guess it's a bit sneaky to put that on top of a post labeled 1.0, but the good news is that this means that 1.1 is not far away, which will include some new enemies (maybe a boss?), new levels, and yes, parallax starfields (and maybe your name in the credits if it isn't already).

  • Indie Game VVVVVV Goes Open Source In Honor Of Its Tenth Anniversary

    Terry Cavanagh’s VVVVVV is an action-platform game that has offered players a tough challenge for almost ten years.

    On January 10, 2020, VVVVVV celebrated its tenth anniversary in a blog post. With the blog post came a big surprise for longtime fans of the game.

  • Indie smash hit VVVVVV is now open source

    The popular Indie platformer VVVVVV is now open source and available on GitHub. Terry Cavanagh, the creator of the game, detailed the process of porting the original Adobe Flash release to C++ for release on PC on his blog. It's an entertaining read, especially for fans of the game.

  • Indie Platforming Classic VVVVV Is Now Open Source

    Creative game developer Terry Cavanaugh has recently decided to release the source code for his beloved gravity-bending platformer VVVVV in honor of the game's tenth anniversary.

Games: Godot Engine, Various Games and Google Pursuing Steam Support in Chrome OS

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Gaming
  • Godot Engine 3.2 is almost here with a first Release Candidate

    Godot Engine, the quickly improving free and open source game engine is getting real close to a major release with the first Release Candidate now up for Godot 3.2.

    What was suppose to be a reasonable small release, has grown into something rather large with a lot of new features coming in to help developers make their games. With thousands of code commits by hundreds of different developers to the point that they expect Godot 3.2 to be "much more mature than 3.1 in all aspects".

  • RELEASE CANDIDATE: GODOT 3.2 RC 1
  • The hero is dead so it's up to you to fix a glitched world - Lenna's Inception is out now

    In Lenna's Inception you will be exploring a little island, filled full of dangerous dungeons as you work to bring order to a kingdom falling apart from glitches. Designed in a way that's much like classic Zelda titles, however it has a clever idea of letting you play through in either 8-bit or 32-bit pixel art styles and they each have a distinct soundtrack.

  • Detailed open-world space sandbox game 'Avorion' leaving Early Access soon

    Boxelware have announced that Avorion, their procedural co-op space sandbox where you build your own spaceship will leave Early Access soon.

    After being in development for years, first appearing on Steam in early 2017 it's been seriously fun to watch it grow into such a massive game. Incredibly fun too.

  • Wizard of Legend gets a little electric in a huge content update out now

    Contingent99 just released a massive upgrade to Wizard of Legend, their fast-paced magical action game and it continues to be brilliant.

    The Thundering Keep update brings in an entirely new stage complete with new enemies and a big boss battle which should make runs through it more interesting. Also added in this update you will find over 20 new Arcana (card spells), over 30 new Relics (items you equip to buff you up), new special moves, new outfits and plenty of balance changes and bug fixes.

  • Steam reportedly coming to Chrome OS - Linux gaming across even more devices

    Android Police have an article up mentioning that Google is reportedly working on getting Steam working officially and supported on Chrome OS. While the details of this are a little sketchy, since neither Valve or Google have announced this, Android Police claim they spoke directly to Kan Liu at CES, the Director of Product Management for Google's Chrome OS who told them of their plans to make it happen.

    Note: You can get Steam working on it in some form with some manual effort now, although it's not great. This seems to be about making it all official. Having it properly integrated, enabling ease of use would be good, part of what Chrome OS is supposed to be about?being simple and easy.

  • Exclusive: Google is working to bring official Steam support to Chrome OS

    Last week in Las Vegas while at CES, I spoke with Kan Liu, Director of Product Management for Google's Chrome OS. In a wide-ranging discussion about the Chrome platform and ecosystem, Liu dropped something of a bombshell on me: the Chrome team is working—very possibly in cooperation with Valve—to bring Steam to Chromebooks.

    Liu declined to provide a timeline for the project, but did confirm it would be enabled by Chrome OS's Linux compatibility. The Steam client would, presumably, run inside Linux on Chrome—a platform for which it is already available. Liu implied, though would not directly confirm, that Google was working in direct cooperation with Valve on this project. Valve's motive here is largely in being the first major gaming storefront on a platform that, to date, has had no compatibility with mainstream PC or console releases. Valve also seems like a good fit, as the company has no particular loyalty to any one platform, and is increasingly facing competition from players like Epic and Microsoft on its most popular OS, Windows. Currently, it is possible to install the Steam Linux client on Chrome OS using the Crostini Linux compatibility layer, but there's no official support, and performance has been pretty lamentable even when comparing identical Linux-native systems to Chrome. Even getting games running in a remotely playable way is kind of a nightmare.

Games: Slay the Spire, Humble Australia Fire Relief Bundle, Stadia, Open Surge and Boxtron

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Gaming
  • A Long Way Down blends together Slay the Spire card combat with maze building - now in Early Access

    One thing is for sure, Slay the Spire truly has kicked off a deck-building indie game revolution of sorts. More and more are releasing with deck-building and A Long Way Down seems like one of the better ones so far. Note: Key provided by the publisher, Goblinz Studio.

    Quite derivative I would say though, in the nicest way possible. The deck-building card-based combat from Slay the Spire is merged in with maze building in a similar fashion to what's seen in Guild of Dungeoneering.

  • The Humble Australia Fire Relief Bundle is up with 100% going to charity

    Humble are back with a new bundle, although this is a 100% charity bundle to help deal with the sad situation in Australia.

    The Humble Australia Fire Relief Bundle only has one tier at $25, which does include quite a lot of games. Here's what's included, I've highlighted in bold text those with Linux support....

  • Google plan over 120 Stadia games this year, 10 coming to Stadia before other platforms

    In their latest community update, the Stadia Team have given a small insight into what's coming to the Linux-powered game streaming service Stadia across 2020.

    Missed our first impressions of Stadia? Check them out here.

    They said "more than" 120 games will be coming to Stadia this year, more interestingly though they also mentioned that 10 will be arriving in the "first half of this year" that will "only" be on Stadia when they launch. So that's presumably some timed-exclusives they have going. No names were mentioned, so we just have to wait and see.

  • Move over Sonic, Surge has arrived with Open Surge - a game engine and retro platformer

    I grew up playing the early Sonic games so Open Surge really speaks to me. A retro Sonic-inspired platformer (that's actually quite polished already) and a game engine for others to create with it.

    Open Surge is free and open source software (GPL license), so anyone can grab it from GitHub and do whatever they wish. Written from scratch in C, using the cross-platform Allegro programming library.

  • Boxtron, the Steam Play tool to run games through a native DOSBox on Linux has a new release

    Boxtron is another awesome Steam Play tool! Covered here a few times now, like Proton it enables you to play games on Linux that don't have a Linux build setup on Steam only this is for DOSBox games.

    Rather than running DOSBox-powered games on Steam through Proton when they don't have a Linux build of it all up, using Boxtron should give a better experience.

    Today a new release went up with Boxtron 0.5.4 fixing multiple issues including: games that use multiple CD images not starting like The Dame Was Loaded (and probably other FMV titles), they tweaked Retro City Rampage 486 to use "aspect=false", several bugs around parsing user-supplied regex for MIDI synthesiser detection were fixed, they also fixed a bug preventing MIDI port detection if there are no soundfonts installed and there's now several fallback soundfont names for various Linux distributions.

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