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  • Why GNU/Linux ports can be less performant, a more in-depth answer

    When it comes to data handling, or rather data manipulation, different APIs can perform it in different ways. In one, you might simply be able to modify some memory and all is ok. In another, you might have to point to a copy and say "use that when you can instead and free the original then". This is not a one way is better than the other discussion - it's important only that they require different methods of handling it. Actually, OpenGL can have a lot of different methods, and knowing the "best" way for a particular scenario takes some experience to get right. When dealing with porting a game across though, there may not be a lot of options: the engine does things a certain way, so that way has to be faked if there's no exact translation. Guess what? That can affect OpenGL state, and require re-validation of an entire rendering pipeline, stalling command submission to the GPU, a.k.a less performance than the original game. It's again not really feasible to rip apart an entire game engine and redesign it just for that: take the performance hit and carry on.

    Note that some decisions are based around _porting_ a game. If one could design from the ground up with OpenGL, then OpenGL would likely give better performance...but it might also be more difficult to develop and test for. So there's a bit of a trade-off there, and most developers are probably going to be concerned with getting it running on Windows first, GNU/Linux second. This includes engine developers.

  • Why Linux games often perform worse than on Windows

    Drivers on Windows are tweaked rather often for specific games. You often see a "Game Ready" (or whatever term they use now) driver from Nvidia and AMD where they often state "increased performance in x game by x%".

    This happens for most major game releases on Windows. Nvidia and AMD have teams of people to specifically tweak the drivers for games on Windows. Looking at Nvidia specifically, in the last three months they have released six new drivers to improve performance in specific games.

  • Thoughts on 'Stellaris' with the 'Leviathans Story Pack' and latest patch, a better game that still needs work
  • Linux community has been sending their love to Feral Interactive & Aspyr Media

    This is awesome to see, people in the community have sent both Feral Interactive & Aspyr Media some little care packages full of treats.

    Since Aspyr Media have yet to bring us the new Civilization game, it looks like Linux users have been guilt-tripping the porters into speeding up, or just sending them into a sugar coma.

  • Feral Interactive's Linux ports may come with Vulkan sooner than we thought
  • Using Nvidia's NVENC with OBS Studio makes Linux game recording really great

    I had been meaning to try out Nvidia's NVENC for a while, but I never really bothered as I didn't think it would make such a drastic difference in recording gaming videos, but wow does it ever!

    I was trying to record a game recently and all other methods I tried made the game performance utterly dive, making it impossible to record it. So I asked for advice and eventually came to this way.

Games for GNU/Linux

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More Games for GNU/Linux

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  • Humble Gems Bundle Goes Live, Offers Chroma Squad For Peanuts

    Wallets at the ready as Humble Gems Bundle is now live, a pay-what-you-can-be-bothered-to-palooza offering a selection of hitherto undiscovered indie gaming marvels. Alright, they’re all games that you’ve probably heard of before, certainly if you’re an active fan of the indie gaming scene.

  • Civilization 6 Linux Release Teased By Aspyr?

    Recently, Aspyr Media confirmed that they’ll be doing a Civilization 6 Linux release soon. Currently, Civilization 6 is live on both PC and Mac. Will Aspyr Media release concrete details about the Civilization 6 Linux release in the next few days?

  • Playstation 4 Linux Hack May Show 4.01 Vulnerability

    A new video about a Playstation 4 Linux hack may have shown a vulnerability in the 4.01 firmware update that came out for the Playstation 4 a few weeks ago. The hacking news came from a video at the GeekPwn 2016 convention in Shanghai, China, where the hacking was shown via a live demo.

    In this demo, a pair of Chinese computer users use a Linux computer and the Webkit browser, which is used to inject a certain exploit into the Playstation 4. One cut later, and a command line prompt appears that is then used to play Super Mario Bros. While the first use for it in the live demo is innocuous, the fact that this is even possible points once again to possible holes in the Playstation’s security.

  • PlayStation 4 hack enables Linux on recent Sony firmware

    A showcase event at this week’s GeekPwn conference in Shanghai suggests that Sony’s PlayStation 4 has been hacked, as a recently released video shows the console running an unsanctioned Linux build courtesy of a web browser exploit.

    While details regarding the hack are not yet known, a browser-based security issue in PS4 firmware version 4.01 could potentially allow users to root the upcoming PlayStation 4 Pro console in order to run unlicensed applications and games.

Games for GNU/Linux

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PlayStation 4 hacked again? Linux shown running on 4.01 firmware

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Linux
Gaming

Hackers attending the GeekPwn conference in Shanghai have revealed a new exploit for PlayStation 4 running on the 4.01 firmware. In a live demo you can see below, once again the Webkit browser is utilised in order to inject the exploit, which - after a conspicuous cut in the edit - jumps to a command line prompt, after which Linux is booted. NES emulation hilarity courtesy of Super Mario Bros duly follows.

Assuming the hack is authentic - and showcasing it at GeekPwn makes the odds here likely - it's the first time we've seen the PlayStation 4's system software security compromised since previous holes in the older 1.76 firmware came to light, utilised by noted hacker group fail0verflow in the first PS4 Linux demo, shown in January this year.

Read more

Also: 'Deus Ex: Mankind Divided' Coming To Linux In November, Mac Port On Hold

Games for GNU/Linux

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Games for GNU/Linux

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Getting started with Raspberry Pi

So you have a Raspberry Pi, or you’re thinking of getting one, and you want to know how to get started and how to become a master user of one. The Raspberry Pi is a single board computer, meaning that in many ways it's a regular PC, except that everything that makes up the computer is on a single board rather than a traditional PC, which has a motherboard and requires a number of additional daughterboards to make a whole unit. Read more

Games for GNU/Linux

  • Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun Hardcore Tactical Stealth Game Out on Linux
    More and more AAA games are coming to our beloved Linux platform, and nothing makes us happier than to see Daedalic Entertainment's Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun title launching today on Steam for Linux, Mac, and Windows. If you're not familiar with Daedalic Entertainment's work, they are the creators of the superb and fun Deponia series, but Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun is something different, a tactical stealth-strategy game in the style of the Commandos stealth-oriented real-time tactics video game series.
  • Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun, the top-down stealth game is now out
    Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun [GOG, Steam, Official Site] is the rather good top-down stealth game from Mimimi Productions. It's now out way a day-1 Linux release and it has a demo. I played the demo and I was massively impressed, so impressed that I would very much like to cover the game properly. So I will be reaching out to the developer for a key.
  • The Keeper, a promising looking side-scrolling survival action game with plenty of action is coming to Linux
    The Keeper side-scrolling survival action game full of boss battles, a combo system for combat and a day and night cycle will come to Linux.
  • Editorial: A chat about asking developers for a Linux port
    It has come to my attention recently that some people have been taking a really hard stance against developers who want to gauge interest for a Linux port. I want to talk about it for a bit. [...] Be the Linux community I know and love, be helpful to developers, get in on beta testing when you can (I’ve seen plenty of developers give out free keys for this too!) and appreciate the good games we get. We are a smaller market in most people’s eyes, so let’s not turn away anything that could help us grow even a little. The fact is, I’ve seen multiple games only come to Linux because Linux fans showed actual interest in it. One such example is Nightside, which I discovered on Steam. After a quick chat with the developer, I was able to convince them to do a Linux build and after a short test they then decided to do support a Linux build. There’s many such examples like this, but due to the amount of games I cover that’s one I could quickly pull up (without having to sift through hundreds of articles).
  • Dawn of War II has a minor patch to fix a few issues
  • Khronos are working on an open standard for VR, Valve will use it
  • BOOR, a new puzzle platformer will arrive with Linux support next year
    BOOR [Official Site] is a new puzzle platformer from developer Dazlog Studio and publisher BadLand Games that will have Linux support. We have many puzzle platformers now, so I do hope BOOR has something to set itself apart from the rest of them. I haven't seen anything in the trailer or the feature list that really jumps out at me. I am hoping when they reveal more gameplay it will look more enticing.
  • The developers of 'EVERSPACE' are still working on the Linux version, seeking help from Epic Games
    EVERSPACE [Steam, Official Site] is the fantastic looking UE4 space shooter that's being ported to Linux, but the developers have encountered a problem with lighting bugs. I follow the topic on Steam, but a user also emailed this in to ask me to highlight it. I would have anyway since I'm interested in it.
  • Total War: WARHAMMER - Realm of The Wood Elves DLC will come to Linux soon
    Total War: WARHAMMER - Realm of The Wood Elves [Steam] is the next DLC that introduces an exciting race into this strategy game. Feral have confirmed it will be on Linux soon with the quick tweet they sent out.
  • DoomRL or 'DRL' as it's now called has gone open source
    After ZeniMax sent the lawyers knocking, the developer of what was called DoomRL (Doom Roguelike) has changed it's name to 'DRL' [Github, Official Site] and it's now open source. ZeniMax are well within their rights to "protect" the Doom brand, but I still think their lawyers are idiotic for doing this. It's not like small-time roguelike was actually competing with the real Doom.

High School's Help Desk Teaches Open Source IT Skills

The following is an adapted excerpt from chapter six of The Open Schoolhouse: Building a Technology Program to Transform Learning and Empower Students, a new book written by Charlie Reisinger, Technology Director for Penn Manor School District in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. In the book, Reisinger recounts more than 16 years of Linux and open source education success stories. Penn Manor schools saved over a million dollars by trading proprietary software for open source counterparts with its student laptop program. The budget is only part of the story. As Linux moved out of the server room and onto thousands of student laptops, a new learning community emerged. Read more

What’s New with Xen Project Hypervisor 4.8?

I’m pleased to announce the release of the Xen Project Hypervisor 4.8. As always, we focused on improving code quality, security hardening as well as enabling new features. One area of interest and particular focus is new feature support for ARM servers. Over the last few months, we’ve seen a surge of patches from various ARM vendors that have collaborated on a wide range of updates from new drivers to architecture to security. Read more