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Tribes2 and Alpha Centauri for Linux 261

Posted by michael
from the better-than-xpilot dept.
Time Doctor writes: "Wow, Tribes 2 and Sid Meiers Alpha Centauri are actually shipping from Loki next week :-) Faith has brought Linux Gamers two new games, and if sales are good, more will come. Sure we had some sad news today about the Indrema, but, keep hope alive! (thanks to Linux Games for the tip)."
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Tribes2 and Alpha Centauri for Linux

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    My guess: the sales of their other titles were too soft (notice that the releases petered out for a while?), so they couldn't afford the packaging. That would definitely fit with 8 months of packaging.

    Guess they either (a) found a different packaging solution, or (hopefully!) (b) got some money!

  • All right, how is Linux "targeted primarily at political leftists?"
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Loki's near-simo releases to date:
    1. Civ:CTP -- 1 month behind
    2. Railroad Tycoon 2: Gold Edition: 2 weeks behind Windows release of Gold Edition
    3. Quake 3: simo if you preordered the CD, 3 weeks if you waited for the tins
    4. SC3U: 3 months
    5. Tribes 2: 1 month (3 weeks?)
    Now. Some of the other titles (Descent 3, Myth 2) were a bit older, but GEEZ. That's a decent track record. It's better than the other companies in this market...
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Works fine on Radeons, too. Rage 128's take a little tweaking, and you lose some visual quality, but you can get that working just fine, too.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    So bitch at developers to use libraries like SDL. MS loves nothing more than developers using MS propriatary libraries. With stuff like SDL, you write your code once, maybe make a few minor enhancements on each platform, and then you can run anywhere.
  • Yeah, I probably will, but maybe not right away. Need to start making real money again. :-) As soon as i get another programming contract...

    I do plan to buy SMAC and SC3K, and maybe Tribes if my 'doze using friends are into that. Hopefully Tribes is one of those games that can be played w/the 'doze version.
  • Ouch. Any idea how much Loki pockets from each of those, after packaging/shipping costs, but before salaries, rent, etc?

    I'm guessing for a $45 game... $20 to the retail store, including shipping it there... $6 for packaging & book & CD, $10 for royalties to the 'doze producer of the game. That leaves... $9.

    Yikes I hope I'm off somewhere. Anyone have any real numbers or more educated guesses?

    And what happens when the game starts selling for under $20? Who looses the most ... Loki, the original maker, or the retail store?
  • Well at least Linux HAS the games.

    And I fail to understand why games cease to be 'great' ast time passes. Heck, Pac-Man and Centipede are still great games! Not as in-depth as today's games, sure, but they're still great for what they are.

    And I for one really want to see Linux replace Windows as the de-facto desktop OS. This is an absolutely necessary step for that to happen. Sure, it would be much better if all games were released concurrently on both platforms. And some are, or nearly so. But late is better than never.
  • I'll probably take them up on that $59 deal. And since I know their margins must be tight right now, would it be better just to buy it from their site instead of a reseller?

    I know it's good to show resellers that there's an interest in Linux games, but as another post mentioned, if they only sell 1000-2000 copies per game, Loki really needs as much money as they can get.
  • by CrusadeR (555) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @08:41PM (#297302) Homepage
    I cannot overstate the importance of these two titles for Linux gaming. As most of you know, the expirmental retail Linux release of Quake 3 was, by publishing standards, a failure. Linux Tribes 2 is the most high-profile port since Q3, and rest assured both industry developers and publishers will once again be watching to determine if Linux is worth their time. Furthermore, Loki cannot continue to port titles if the ones they do publish are not purchased; so spread the word (many Linux users were unaware Loki had ported anything beyond Civilization: Call to Power) if you want Linux gaming to be a viable option. It's even more difficult for Linux porters (Loki [lokigames.com], Tribsoft [tribsoft.com], Hyperion [hyperion-software.com]) to make a profit on their work considering they have to mark up the retail price to recoup the inherent losses that go with filling a niche market (Win32 titles can sell for much lower due to established publishers, retail chains, customers, etc.)... it's a vicious circle, but the only way to break it is to support what's out there now to forge the foundation for later growth.

    In short, holding off Linux game purchases because the releases are not timely (i.e., on par with Windows) or cheap will ensure that they will always be neither.

    Btw, as has been stated elsewhere on this story, Linux Tribes 2 is being released only 2 weeks after the Win32 version, which is hardly a significant period of time.
  • You do know who published Asheron's Call, don't you?

    Three guesses.

    Still don't know? It's Microsoft. Microsoft will NEVER actually let any game with their name all over it be ported to Linux. Trust me.
    _____
  • Why do you think they bought Bungie? You do know that the X-Box version of Halo will be the first to ship, right? They needed a platform title, and apparently nobody else inhouse came up with anything management deemed "good enough", so they dug into the cash reserves, and bought up another company with a promising title, and told them "This game will be on the X-Box. It will not be on any other console. The X-Box version will come first. No questions."
    _____
  • OTOH, there are so few Linux titles out there that you could simply "take a chance" on a title that you might not otherwise purchase.

    Pleasant surprises aren't entirely impossible.

    Besides, there is no dishonor inherent with purchasing with more than just your immediate utility in mind.
  • Loki itself already has more than 10.
  • It's from Sid Meiers. It is not a "clone".

    It is infact the real thing.
  • What quality software?

    Many of us object to wasting our money on crap, only to be forced into wasting more money on the same crap next year. In order for your claim to be true, there would have to be some quality wares to draw a comparison on.

    Most consumer software (games or not) is simply crap. Game companies quite often shove games out the door prematurely depending on that 1st patch to fix things afterwards.

    Linux took of not just because it was cheap and reliable. It also happened to support common consumer PC hardware before any of it's payware competitors did (Next, Sun).

    It does one no good to BUY a $400 copy of NeXTstep if it won't even support your HD controller or CDROM drive.
  • That's funny, my copy of Mandrake 7.2 will setup a G400 with 3D acceleration straight out of the box no muss no fuss.

    Game binaries installed under Redhat for my Vodoo2 "just work" as does newer stuff like Heavy Gear 2.

    Even when I was running the V2 & V3 it wasn't any of the things you describe it as.
  • Actually, the V4 and G400 work quite well with modern distributions, straight out of the box, with NO FUTZING whatsoever.

    Even the V2 performed adequately back in the day. Installation (using 3dfx's own instructions and rpms) were also a breeze. The only "interesting" part of the process was making that little 3dfx device module.
  • I know that "Linux is yesterday's technology" is bullshit. I know that "Linux is a toy OS is bullshit." So let's not encourage anything that would lead people to think otherwise, mmmkay?

    Who cares what other people think? Linux will still be there. People who care will still write code for it. Linux will continue to get better. Anyone who doesn't use it is losing out but it's their loss, not yours.

    Leave well enough alone. I want games. I don't have Windows at all, and I don't even have very modern hardware (still using a celeron 1), so I don't care if I have to play older games. In fact I prefer it. I'd rather get the cream of the crop than have to wade through the mountains of shit, like the Windows gamers have to do.

    Huzzah for Loki. I've bought all your releases so far and I'm buying the next two right now.

  • Linux will continue to get better, but there is harm in thinking that you can keep it all to yourself.

    Who said anything about keeping it to myself? The whole point of Linux is that everyone can use it, share it, enjoy it, participate.

    If they choose not to participate, then it is THEIR LOSS. But that doesn't affect me. Drivers? I won't get *less* drivers if they don't want to join in. You seem to believe not having something is a loss, even though you didn't have that same thing before! That's not a loss: that's called a break-even situation.

    So let the "Linux is a toy" people enjoy their brief feelings of superiority. In 12 months time half of them will probably be using Linux. In 24 months time they'll be wondering how they got by with the crap they used before.

  • by Brian Kendig (1959) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @09:29PM (#297313) Homepage
    Remember when the Quake III q3test game was released for the Mac first, instead of for Windows? The community screamed about this, but Id said that they needed to focus on the game engine before they worried about driver issues. The Mac doesn't have nearly the widely chaotic diversity of video, sound, and controller drivers as Windows does, and therefore the developers didn't have to spend as much time dodging driver incompatibilities while they got the engine itself solid.

    Now, fast forward to Tribes 2, which was initially heralded as a Windows/Mac simultaneous release. The Mac version was quietly cancelled last year. The PC version just came out two weeks ago... and large numbers of users complained when it crashed frequently. The release was really only beta-quality, and a handful of patches appeared over the next few days and nights to hastily fix the worst problems.

    On the in-game news board, Sierra actually posted an apology for the poor quality of the initial release, but they tried to defend themselves by pointing out the various hardware configurations they had to code for:

    • 2 chipsets (Intel and AMD, from 300MHz to 1.5GHz)
    • 150 video cards, with constantly-changing drivers
    • 50 sound cards
    • 5 OS'es (Win95, Win98, WinMe, WinNT, Win2K), not counting Linux
    • Various motherboards, RAM configurations, CD-ROM drives, and input devices.

    And thus they said they had to test over 75,000 different hardware configurations, so it's inevitable there would be some problems. (Not to mention that they wrote it for OpenGL and for Direct3D!) They end their apology by saying: "So now you can understand why developers are so interested in the Xbox."

    I just have to point out that if Sierra had released the game on the Mac first, they would only have had to write it to support OpenGL and InputSprockets, which every Mac ships with support for out-of-the-box. Once they were sure the engine was solid, it would have been much easier at that point to work on the Windows port.

    Sure, it would have postponed their Windows profits to release on the Mac first... but how much money has Sierra already lost through returns by people who couldn't get the game to run, through having to pay a support staff to handle the complaints and a dev team to work on patches ASAP, and through the bad word-of-mouth that the game's quality is terrible?

    (Of course, this is the same Sierra which refused to release an almost-completed Mac Half-Life, and which cancelled the Babylon 5 game for which special video had been shot with the original series actors. Maybe money grows off trees in their land.)

  • Utah-GLX is unsupported, however (architechtural weaknesses don't allow the framerates to get up high enough for reasonable play except on the hottest boxes)- if you've got a G400, you should be getting XFree86 4.0.X, the latest DRM, etc.

    Suffice it to say, I'm buying it.
  • Nope.

    I already own copies of Civ:CTP, Railroad Tycoon 2, Myth2, Descent 3, and HOMM3. Now that they've announced SMAC is shipping, I have placed an order for that too.

    I also have set aside the funds to purchase Deus Ex and Kohan as soon as they ship.

    I've made a decision to quit buying Windows games and so far I've done a pretty good job of sticking to it. (I couldn't pass up System Shock 2 in the bargain bin though...) At this point, the only systems I have for playing games are my Debian Linux PC and my N64. This severely limits my choices in games, but so far Loki has ported nearly all of the games I might have purchased for Windows. (Now don't I sound overly pretentious)

  • ::sigh:: what is it today with the DirectX trolling?

    Time and again the general public has voted with its wallets and bought Windows ME as a games platform or a playstation/dreamcast etc.

    Reality check: More games are available for Windows than for linux. This is because (until recently) the interest in linux gaming has been fairly small - only recently has linux started taking a place on desktop machines, and thus only recently has there been much demand for games to run under linux. Taking that headstart into account, along with the fact that (through illegal means) MS has the majority of desktops cornered - it's tough to buy a machine from a major vendor WITHOUT Windows (note: tough, not impossible) - it's only natural that support for gaming APIs would be rather small at the moment. Loki has been doing a phenomenal job of getting some great games running under linux - I suggest you take a look.

    Why do Linux people continue with the fantasy that their operating system is anything other than a tool for elitist, arrogant techies (nost of whom long for the days when computers were hard to use, and resent Microsoft for making computers easy for the man in the street).

    • Stability (my current uptime: 35 days)
    • Speed
    • Portability (runs on a VAST number of platforms)
    • Versitility (That old 386 makes a damn fine router/firewall/mail station)
    • Availibility of development tools (they're FREE!)
    • Customizability (I run what I want to run, not what some large company says I want to run)
    • Support (Email to debian-user: free. Support call to MS: $45 "incident fee" plus additional charges)

    I could go on...

    I also disagree with you about MS "making it easy" for people. Reality check: MS is only perceived as "easy" because everyone uses it. If your first experience with a computer is MS Windows - that's what will seem easy to you 2 years down the road. If your first experience was a *nix desktop, 2 years down the road THAT would seem easy to you. It's all a matter of perspective.

    The Market has spoken, and it has said DirectX. Loud and clear, the message of the market is OpenGL sucks, DirectX rules. (I am speaking in simplistic terms here so the less intelligent slashdot morons can understand me).

    One word: Bull.

    To elaborate, "the market" only shows a strong showing for DirectX (a proprietary MS API) because Windows (a proprietary MS OS) has a vastly larger installation base (on desktops) than anything else right now. Naturally, more games will be available for it - and as a game developer, you'd be silly not to take advantage of any useful API that your host OS offers. That being said, many development houses are starting to see that there are better ways of doing graphics than DirectX. Take Baldur's Gate II for example - it uses OpenGL for graphics, but also makes use of DirectX for sound and other things. It's a case of using the best tool in your current toolkit for the job at hand. If your toolkit is MS Windows, then DirectX is in there, and can be used. Under linux, it's doubtful that you'll see support for a closed, proprietary API designed for an architecturally dissimilar OS. What you might see is a similar API developed in an open fashion (IE: done the "linux way") - but these things take time, and VERY few people are paid to do this stuff full-time. So...it can take a while. Linux is definitely capable of being as good of a gaming host OS as Windows - it just requires that developers spend the time to develop for it, and marketers to realize that there IS indeed a gaming market out there that WANTS to buy linux games. The availibility of dual-boot, however, stymies this a bit when developers release for Windows first -- as many people who would buy the linux version instead buy the Windows version, simply because it is available first.

    Fact: Linux cannot and will not succeed in the games market. Period. Until it has good support for DirectX.

    Reality check: DirectX is an API for Windows. Linux and Windows are dissimilar architecturally, so you're not going to see "DirectX for linux" anytime soon.

    This, of course, isn't stopping Loki from porting games to linux. As linux gaming matures, I'm sure we WILL see a standardized API for direct system calls to hardware coalesce - it may not be there right now - but give it some time - linux gaming is still fairly new. Let Loki, id, and the other linux-gaming-friendly companies get some more games out, and start getting SIMULTANEOUS releases of games - then you'll start to see the market for linux games jump - and THEN you'll start seeing things like standardized APIs get discussed.

    Unfortunately this will never happen because of the linux crowds pathological jealousy and hatred of Microsoft. Nonetheless it is the ONLY way that Linux is ever likely to get any real games support.

    The linux crowd simply sees beyond the wool that's been pulled over your eyes. Microsoft has illegally forced it's grossly inferior product into a position of dominance - and has been supported by the government practically every step of the way. Do you think it's in Microsoft's best interests to EVER open the DirectX API, such that a port could even be conceived? No. Microsoft is in the business of making money. It's something they're very good at. They're conspiring with other large corporate interests (RIAA, MPAA, etc...) to strip your rights away. They want to make you RENT your OS, and the apps that run on it. They don't want you to have a choice.

    Then again, I guess everything I've just said is completely irrational, isn't it?

    Do us a favor, and crawl back under your bridge where it's dark and safe. Cuddle up with your "Tickle-Me-Steve-Ballmer" and your "Sleep-n-Snore-Bill-Gates", and stop spreading groundless FUD.

    I, of course, am prone to being completely wrong.

  • ... Aspyr [aspyr.com] seems to be the Loki of Mac games, and at this point there may be more Linux users than Mac users :p

    If Sierra wanted, they could contract the mac port to Aspyr (who did Deus Ex, Sims, IIRC Unreal, etc)...


    Your Working Boy,
    - Otis (GAIM: OtisWild)
  • the API`s are not as straightforward in use as DX is (im not talking performance or design here)

    I've never heard of someone complaining of the obtuseness of OpenGL or SDL and praising DirectX's ease-of-use. I have heard the opposite, from the likes of John Carmack. I haven't found OGL or SDL to be non-straightforward. Clearly there is a level of opinion involved, but if which API someone finds more straightforward is based solely on personal preference, then you can't claim either is superior across the board.

    and they allways work as predicted

    I assume you mean DX always works as predicted, even though your wording would indicate that clause applied to Linux's API's.

    Anyway, that is unsubstantiated, and contrary with experience. Are you really going to expect me to believe that DirectX always does what is expected, and that SDL/OpenGL frequently do not?

    The large number of Linux distributions confuses and potentially compromise compatibility.

    Ya know, just once I want to get into one of these discussions without hearing an argument that's 5 years old. The distribution issue has demonstrably not been a significant issue. I guess the keyword here is "potentially". Yeah, there is a non-0 probability of compatability problems. Then again there is a non-0 probability of compatability problems between win9x versions (including service pack numbers), and a significant probability of problems between NT and 9x. But I haven't seen vendors getting "confused" about that.

    This is a huge FUD argument, and I'm dissapointed you felt it necessary to resort to it.

    DX supports most, if not all, top of the bill hardware, whereas Linux hw-drivers will usually lag a little. The potential user base is much larger,

    A good point. The reason DX keeps up is because the hw vendors make drivers for it (because of larger user base). As linux market share increases, the vendors will begin to target linux more (witness Nvidia), and that disparity should decrease and eventually vanish. Adopting DirectX now wouldn't help, though, since the drivers would still have to be made to work under Linux. Remember, DX is an interface to drivers, not the other way around.

    windows games rarely need (debug) patches afterwards, free or not.

    This is a joke, right? I'm not sure if I should argue, or just laugh.

    Anyway, since my roomate is a heavy player of Win games, I know for a fact that this is BS. And having seen the number of patches released because of problems with DirectX, I conclude your earlier point about DX always "doing what it is supposed to" is also BS.

    You may not like what is, but that`s not a reason to kill a man`s opinion.

    I'm not killing his opinion, I'm pointing out the fallacies in his logic. I don't dislike his opinion on DX, I just disagree (i dislike his opinion of the community, but that's because it is an invention). If he can't back up his conclusion with reasonable arguments, then perhaps he's just wrong. It is possible to be wrong.

    There are reasons why Linux could use DirectX, such as the prevalence of Windows games that use it. Everyone knows Linux is a small market (for now, I hope). Most of the other arguments made by him and you are either unsubstantiated or outright wrong.

  • by Chris Burke (6130) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @07:17PM (#297319) Homepage
    I'm sorry, but the whole of the gaming worl uses it.

    Except for that which doesn't.

    Even consoles are getting it, like the XBox.

    Haha. XBox is 1) made by MS, who by chance also makes DirectX and 2) basically a PC in a pretty box. Try again when PS2 uses DirectX.

    Games that don't use it, such as WuakeIII, are very dificult to install.

    What are you talking about? DirectX has nothing to do with installing (other than every game wants you to install DirectX, even if you already have it)? InstallShield works no matter what, and if you'd ever used Loki's installer, you'd know they aren't any different.

    You people need to buy things.

    You need to grab a clue about the "people" you're talking about. Seriously, you sound like a microserf from 1996 talking about us "longhairs who want everything for free".

    Normal people=market.

    Wow, almost a point. Yeah, Linux won't be a gaming platform until it gets bigger market share. How +1, insightful.

    12 month old crap like what is being touted here

    Like Tribes2? Damn, if you've had it for 12 months, why have you been holding out?

    I suspect I will be flamed and modded down for this, but it is the truth.

    Yeah, if "truth" means FUD based on other 5-year old FUD.

  • This is all that matters though...

    http://www.gamespy.com/stats/ [gamespy.com]
  • How is this a troll? It is relevant. It is on-topic. It is a good reply to the parent comment. Somebody give the moderators a clue.

  • Subject: It's Play Time: SMAC to Ship Next Week!
    Date: Wed, 11 Apr 2001 15:47:28 -0700
    From: Kayt Sorhaindo
    Organization: Loki Software, Inc.
    Newsgroups: loki.games.smac

    IT'S PLAY TIME

    Not one, but TWO Linux games will ship next week from Loki Software,
    Inc.

    Tribes 2 will be HOT on the heals of the Windows release by Sierra
    On-Line, and the long-awaited Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri Planetary Pack
    by Firaxis will also make its Linux debut.

    Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri Planetary Pack will ship to resellers on
    Monday, April 16, with the low MSRP of $29.95. Tribes 2 will follow suit
    on Wednesday, April 18, with an MSRP of $49.95.

    Can't resist both of these exciting games? Take advantage of a
    promotional bundle and receive both for the special price of $59.95.
    This offer is available directly from Loki and from select resellers.
    [Note that the Loki webstore will not be updated for another 48 hours
    with this new information]

    Look for these products at your favorite online reseller.

    For more information visit www.lokigames.com.

    Enjoy!
    - Loki Software, Inc.
  • Friend, I bought my Voodoo 3 specifically because it was the most supported card for Linux at the time, with the most open specifications. Suddenly, it's all shifted, and Voodoo owners are frozen out (at least till the next rev. of X.)

    Your attitude is infuriating. It is frankly seriously fucked that a shifting sea of libraries, versions of X, kernels, and the like make Linux support of any given game something of a crap shoot. Read me lips and read them well: this situation is broken and the situation in Windows is far better.

    This is only true of the game sector. My Linux machine serves primarily as a SOHO server and development environment, and works really well for that. As a gaming platform, Linux is a bloody mess, and I frankly expect anyone who tries to sell it as one to fail horribly until the situation stabilizes - and there's no reason to believe that it will.

  • f you were thinking about going out and just getting Tribes 2 for Linux, you may want to think again. I've been on the beta cycle for it, and have lost countless hours doing nothing more than sitting in front of my computer playing it. Infact, I would say that unless you're absolutely sure you won't mind being seriously addicted to a game for the next dozen months, you should think again.

    A year from now, the Wall Street Journal will be writing about the severe slowdown of Linux and other open source projects caused by Tribes 2. Is that what you're telling us?

    ObJectBridge [sourceforge.net] (GPL'd Java ODMG) needs volunteers.

  • Will I buy it? Hell fucking yeah. I've been dying for a copy of Alpha Centauri for Linux for ages. Now I can finally get rid of Windows 95. Between Alpha Centauri and Maelstrom, I'm going bonkers on games. All I need now is to find the old text-based Infocom games for Linux and I'm set for life. Actually, a copy of Ultima 4 for Linux wouldn't hurt either. But that might be stretching it.

    ObJectBridge [sourceforge.net] (GPL'd Java ODMG) needs volunteers.
  • I agree. Loki keeps coming out with games I don't want, so my Windows partition has to hang around.

    Come out with Chaos Gate, Counter-Strike, Rogue Spear, and Swat 3, then we'll talk.

    Just come out with Counter-Strike and Rogue spear, and I'll live without Chaos Gate and Swat 3.

    -
  • Go play Tac-Ops (which works under Linux).


    Thanks, but I prefer games that don't think SPAS means "Special Purpose Airsoft Shotgun", which the Tactical-Ops web page has said for at least six months.

    (I assume you meant Tactical-Ops, not Tac-Ops, which is an old DOS wargame.)

    -
  • Did you notice that Soldier of Fortune is in the "Home Office" category? One has to wonder what sort of people they're employing...

  • Remember, these aren't the requirements that Loki thought up, these are the requirements of the game according to the original developers. I personally like games and my buddy has been playing Tribes 2 for a week now and it looks great. I like being able to play games on my Linux box, it just means i need to have the hardware to do it. And in reference to games like Diablo, last time I checked, Loki tried and Blizzard said no. Not much you can do about that.
  • I wouldn't worry about problems with the game if I were you. I have basically every game that Loki has released and they all perform as well as or better then their Windows releases (Loki is known in their newgroups to point out the bugs that they know of but can't fix so that the game remains compatible with the windows version).

    The only warning I would give you is that alot of the games Loki released are extremely addictive. =)
  • Ask Loki. They ported Heavy Gear Solid 2 to Linux and it was a DX game. From what I've heard, it's more stable under Linux with OpenGL too.
  • No. I do not pirate it.

    In the example for UT the binaries are avalible for download, I am not going to buy Deus Ex for Linux because I have already finished it, there is no replay value in it for me. (I finished it a few times already.)

    I have considered purchasing the game a second time however. What I *DO* do is wait to buy a game if there is an announcement that there will be a Linux version. If this is the case, I will wait. If not, and I want the game? I buy it. (And do the reg-card thing)
  • by Mr. Flibble (12943) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @09:53PM (#297333) Homepage
    I pre-bought Quake 3 For Linux, and I had to wait some time for it too because Loki was shipping to US customers first (I am Canadian). I recieved it some time after the Windows version was in stores, it also cost me almost twice as much as the Windows version.

    I am not going to bitch about that though, I bought the Linux version because I believe in supporting Linux.

    When I purchased Unreal Tournament, there was no official Linux version. I sent my registration card back to Epic, and scrawled across the top in bright red ink were the words: "PURCHASED FOR USE WITH LINUX", lo and behold, there is official support from Loki for UT now.

    I bought Deus Ex the instant it hit the shelves (I own anything and everything to do with Warren Spector), I did the same with this, sending the registration card to Edios with the same words on it.

    Next thing I know there is a announcement about Deus Ex for Linux. Unfortunatly I had already finished Deus Ex. =( I would have waited had I known.

    I knew Tribes 2 was coming out for Linux. That is why I did not buy the Windows version. I knew the Linux version would eventually come. My friend went into EB World and asked about the Linux version of Tribes 2, and he got a scoff from the sales person, "Linux? Who uses that? No, we don't carry any Linux software." My friend bought the Windows version (and now has a Linux server running) and the salesperson said "Heh, still gonna buy the Windows version eh?"

    My friend responded "Yeah, I guess I don't have a CHOICE."

    Just to be a bastard (Yeah, I have read the Advocacy how-to) I went into that EB World, picked up Tribes 2, and said "Cool! Tribes 2!" (With the same sales person next to me) I made a pretense of looking at the side of the box and then said, "Hmmm, it mentions the Linux server here on the side of the box, but nothing about the Linux client." He got smug again and said "Nah, we don't carry and Linux games."

    I said "Oh, too bad, guess I will have to buy my games off of the internet then... bye." (Most of the local LUG is going to go do this to EB World... :)

    Probably not the best solution, I don't know if I would reccomend that one...

    So, yes, I buy Linux versions of software whenever it is avalible, and I make it known that I want more Linux software avaliable. My friend Todd who purchased Tribes 2 at EB World will probably play the game under both Windows and Linux, and certanly run the server on Linux, but he won't wait for the Linux versions of games, and he certanly won't pay more for them.

    I can't say as I blame him really. It is not fair that we have to wait longer, its even less fair that the same software should cost more for Linux. So, if you can't be bothered to actually buy a Linux version of a game, fill out the registration card (Marketers for software companies take these *VERY* seriously, I know the ones at my work do!) and write in big bold letters "PURCHASED FOR USE WITH LINUX."

    If you can't vote with your dollars (which is the best idea) then vote with the registration cards. It makes a huge difference.
  • by Sloppy (14984)

    This is dangerously close to the too-good-to-be-true area. What's the deal with these guys? Are they selling at a loss, or pirates, or what?


    ---
  • IMHO you're wasting your time looking there. Linux games are like heavy metal CDs: you won't find anything decent in a retail store. Thank Yog for online shops!


    ---
  • by Grond (15515) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @08:06PM (#297343) Homepage
    1) Tribes2 is not old at all. This is a long-planned near-simultaneous release. The Windows version came out like a week ago.

    2) What software is available for Linux? Well, there's WordPerfect Office 2000 and Oracle 8i, to name a couple of fairly heavy-duty apps. Also, IBM DB2 and ViaVoice. Then of course there are the thousands of 'minor' applications like Blender and the GIMP. True, none of those are the 'heavyweight' office automation package (I assume you mean MS Office), but they are some pretty major applications.

    Another way of looking at this is that it would be better for Linux to have -some- high-visibility apps than none, even if they are a little older.

  • i didn't. i bought the windows version as soon as it can be available. Windows simply is a better platform for games.
  • I haven't had a single crash yet. I've been running T2 on a P3 500 with a *TNT* video card (yes, TNT without a number after it), without any problems. Yes, I had to tone down a lot of the graphics, but it still looks pretty damn cool (better than T1 graphics). And the gameplay is great, I love playing games of Hunters with like 15 people (and it doesn't lag to hell on me like you claim).

    So, personally, I think you have some machine problems that need to be addressed if you can't even install the game correctly.
  • I certainly hope that Tribes 2 plays better under Linux than it does under windows. I can't count the number of problems I've had with it, not to mention how many my friends have had. That's one piece of software I regret buying.
  • I ran Alpha Centauri on a Pentium 200 laptop for a long time. Not the speediest thing in the world, but turn off most of the sound/music options and it's quite playable. PPro200 won't have any problems at all unless the port is really bad.

    Eric

  • by GoofyBoy (44399) on Thursday April 12, 2001 @04:45AM (#297368) Journal
    >If this game is successful,

    Big if.

    > and many people playtest the engine

    Notice that its still being debugged after its released. People call it good for a beta.

    >and submit bug reports and the folks at Tribes2 keep on top of it,

    They seem to be doing so too. Every day seems like a new patch day.

    > you might see a whole slew of mods that may rival Half-Life's in terms of quality, only this time on the Linux desktop.

    Er... no. HalfLife is a strange creature. Alot of companies would die to have that sort of community support but they can't seem to replicate it. Look at Quake3. Its available for Linux and modable, but nothing that noteworthy which gets close to TFC/CS is out yet.
  • I bought the win32 version a couple weeks ago (I didn't know there was a Linux version on the way, else I might have waited). Like you, I found that it was difficult to see things. Then I found some alternative graphics on the CD that were designed for red-green colorblind people. I suffer some sort of colorblindness (not sure if it's the red-green type though), and installing the alternative graphics helped a lot in terms of playability.
  • What do you do if/when Loki, or even the original game producer, comes out with a Linux version after you've bought the Windows version? Do you pirate it, cheating Loki out of money or giving the company the impression that the Linux version isn't selling, or do you purchase it a second time?

    --

  • At Draeker's keynote at the CLIQ a couple of weeks back, he said they were seeing much better frame rates (between 2x and 4x) than you'd see on the Windows versions of the same games. He also said that gcc put out code that was 15-20% less well optimized/slower than the Windows compilers did, but that the other advantages of the Linux OS more than made up for that.
  • From the Loki SMAC FAQ [lokigames.com] (sounds kinda cool):
    SMAC is not network compatible because the Windows version uses DirectPlay for networking. Since DirectPlay is a Microsoft product and uses proprietary calls which Microsoft has not documented, there is currently no way for us (or for Mac users) to write a game with compatible calls.
    This is pretty sad, I wanted to buy this game until I found out I couldn't play it against my friend on his PC. *sigh* I'll just have to grab some old games off EB World until Deus Ex is released.

    "I may not have morals, but I have standards."
  • OpenGL assures there will be no differences in the different OS'es and they will be compatible in network play.

    OpenGL can't assure multiplay. Games don't pass polygons to each other during play, they send data about actions and unit positions. How different platforms render that data on screen is irrelevant, as long as the results are consistent.

    For compatible play you need a compatible API such as OpenPlay [apple.com] or SDL_Net [libsdl.org] (personally, I'd like to see those two efforts merge in some way).

    What network multiplay API did Loki use? Are their games compatible with either DirectPlay (Win) or NetSprockets (Mac)?

  • by idcmp (93227) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @06:38PM (#297397) Homepage
    If you were thinking about going out and just getting Tribes 2 for Linux, you may want to think again. I've been on the beta cycle for it, and have lost countless hours doing nothing more than sitting in front of my computer playing it. Infact, I would say that unless you're absolutely sure you won't mind being seriously addicted to a game for the next dozen months, you should think again.

    There are lots of good reviews about Tribes 2 (for Microsoft and Linux alike), so I won't touch on the game here (go read them!)

    Seriously, the only thing that is a draw back in this game is the hardware needed to play it (it's just as bad - if not worse - on Microsoft). But if you've been looking for an excuse or good time to upgrade your system (3D card specifically), this is definately it.

  • by hoser (95281) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @07:01PM (#297399) Journal
    3)Get some bloody normal people to use the OS. Just now its all Bearded GNU types and warezing kiddies, at least when it is being used in the home. Linux is a business OS, not a home OS. Normal people=market.

    Here we've got the chicken and the egg problem. You need to get people to use the OS to get companies to make apps/games, but you need apps/games to get people to use the OS. Loki's really sticking their neck out (I would think - don't really know what sales are like) by selling Linux versions of games that are already available on Windows. Nevertheless, it's a good thing they are, because if Tribes2 sells well other companies will start to look at Linux as a potential platform as well.

    I'd definetly consider buying Tribes2 for Linux - if I could get it at Electronics Boutique, so I could return it in the event that it doesn't work on my machine. euroderf's right on the DirectX thing. I've only tried installing demos on Linux because the risk of going out and buying it is too great at the moment.

    It alkso needs new games, not 12 month old crap like what is being touted here.

    Didn't Tribes2 just come out like a week or two ago? I think Loki's done a pretty good job on that one! Alpha Centauri may be a different story, but I choose to look at it as glass-half-full.

  • I agree. Even though spend most of my time in Linux, if I am given the choice between a Linux version of a game and a Windows one, I will usually choose the Windows one. The reason is that I mainly play games at LAN parties. I don't want to have to reboot every time we change what game we're playing!

    Now, what I would really like to be able to do is buy a hybrid game. I would pay extra for a game which I could run on both platforms.

    Unfortunately, Loki is not able to provide this as the original game developer does not want to have to compete with their own game. So, Loki has to provide a Linux-only port, if they provide a separate product. And they have to provide a separate product, because otherwise there is no way to know how many people are playing the Linux version, and thus how much Loki should be paid.

    Ideally, the original game developers would do the port. In order for this to be realistic, however, we need to set up an environment where porting a game requires no more than a re-compile. Unfortunately, Microsoft has made this very hard (intentionally or not) with their Win32 and DirectX API's, which can't reasonably be supported on other platforms.

    What we need is a complete OS abstraction layer on which people can build platform independent software. There have been many efforts to do this (SDL, etc.), but these have mostly been fairly specialized, which means you usually need several different libraries to wrap all of the OS-specific functionality you use. Chances are that each library will have different supported platforms and other conflicting requirements. Sorting these out can be just as much of a pain as manually porting your code.

    It's unfortunate that C and C++ don't have a standard API comparable to Java's. Not that I like Java, but...

    Uhh... what were we talking about again?

    ------

  • I don't know about Tribes2, but Alpha Centauri has been out for a WHILE. It was fun, but not as fun as Civ2 used to be either IMO.
  • Also - nice Zork Quote :-)

    Thanks. Sorry you're post got modded down as a Troll. That was pretty lame.

  • by Cheshire Cat (105171) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @06:46PM (#297408) Homepage
    I'm glad to see that Loki is taking a large risk and porting these games to a Linux platform. I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess a lot of Slashdot readers will heap kudos and praise on Loki for doing this, and many of these people will urge others to "support Linux and buy these games."

    But I'm kind of wondering how many of these people will actually buy the Linux version of these games? It seems like everyone wants someone else to buy the games. Even though I really want to see Linux succeed as a gaming platform, I seriously doubt I'll buy either of these. Usually if I want to play a game, I'll hop on my Windows box. In my experience, its been much easier to get something to work on my Windows box than on a Linux box.

    I know that Linux is in a Catch 22 where games won't succeed until people buy them, but no one will buy them until lots of games come out. I wish I could say that I would buy one of these ports to support Loki. But honestly, I know I won't. And I'm pretty sure few Slashdot readers will. I just hope that in a few years, I'll be able to change my stance and say that getting a game to work on my Linux box is just as easy as my PC.

    Anyone else feel the same way?

  • Normally, I would agree with you. Very seldomly does Loki come out with games that meet my two Linux game buying criteria:

    1. It must be a game that I am interested in already. I'm not going to buy Railroad Tycoon, just because it's on Linux.

    2. I must come out before I buy it for Windows. I will not pay twice for the same game, and I will not wait indefinately for a Linux port.

    However, Tribes 2 meets BOTH of those criteria, and so I will buy it this weekend. Hooray for Loki! May there be many more Linux games for me to buy.

    The only "intuitive" interface is the nipple. After that, it's all learned.

  • This is a dangerous line of reasoning. Suppose the community really comes together and supports the Tribes 2 release, with sales well worth any game publisher's time. What happens with the next high profile game? Are we all supposed to be religious about buying every single game that comes out, whether we want it or not?

    The rise in Linux gaming should mirror the rise in Linux usage. If we try to rush this process, we may end up causing Linux gaming even more harm, because, as they say, once bitten twice shy. Gaming companies will be less likely to port if they launch a major release expecting the same kinds of figures as Tribes 2, and don't get it.

    The only "intuitive" interface is the nipple. After that, it's all learned.

  • First off, I won't "do windows" strictly because of my belief system -- I can't support a company that has cheated, broken the law, yada, yada, yada (you've heard it all, right?)

    I think Quake3 and MythII work great on my Debian box...wasn't that hard to install.

    I, for one, am going to stop by fryes in LA in a couple weeks and buy TWO Loki Linux games. At the bottom end, they're $25.00!! How much is programming freedom worth to you?

    Being proactive for Linux is very important right now. I donate to FSF and EFF as well.

    If you don't use or like Linux, don't buy the games. But if you're a crazy programmer, or think Linux is pretty cool, help Loki and Linux provide a real alternative to Windows -- buy Linux!!

  • by jbrians (135805) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @06:34PM (#297423) Homepage
    Buy it. Seriously. Even if it isn't stocked at your local CompUSA. That is assuming you want more games to come to linux...
    -Brian
  • by yamla (136560) <chris@@@hypocrite...org> on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @07:23PM (#297426)
    I plan on ordering Alpha Centauri. I already own the Windows version and I enjoy it so much that I'd like a version for my regular operating system.

    I do not play that many games. Most of them are Windows only (e.g. Black and White) and so when something I really enjoy is available in Linux, it is worth it to me to purchase.

    Besides, I seem to be reinstalling my Microsoft operating systems once every 4 - 8 weeks while my Linux install is completely stable.

    For what it is worth, if a game came out for both Windows and Linux at the same time and played pretty much the same, I'd rather buy the Linux version than the Windows version.

    I, of course, do not claim to represent even a significant minority. But hey, I represent me (most of the time).

    --

  • that's probably at least partially true. But why?

    Linux performance is about equal to windows on just about everyone's account.

    it's just that people are used to playing games on windows because there aren't enough linux games, and there aren't enough linux games because people are used to playing games on windows.

    ________

  • Listen to the man. It's easy to *want* games on Linux, but without doing anything to *support* them, there isn't much chance of the dream ever becoming reality.

    ________

  • by Bad_CRC (137146) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @07:57PM (#297429)
    Tribes 2, in a (nearly) simultaneous release with the win client, not a year later, not even months... a full retail port developed and tested along side the windows version.

    This is a big deal for linux gaming. This time you have to either commit to buying the linux version, or stick to playing on windows only. (To help with the choice, the Linux version is reported to run BETTER than the win version by the people who tested it and have played both.)

    If Tribes 2 fails on Linux (and there's a fair chance it may) we may have missed the last effort of this level to bring Blockbuster games to our OS at the same time as win players, and the ONLY way to make sure companies have a reason to release Linux games is to back up our talk with our cash. We've all said that Linux has a market that game developers shouldn't ignore, but this is the point where we need to put up or shut up, because the free ride is over, and each of us has to make a choice, the results of which will impact every future title.

    If you can't tell, I'm afraid of what the future of big-name gaming on Linux will be unless companies stop losing money on ports.

    oh, and please check out the linux tribes website too...

    ________

  • I was on the Beta team for the Linux version of Tribes2 and it is a fantastic game. Hats off to Loki for a wonderfull job. Everything that works under the Windows version works under Linux. However, be warned that it will only really works with nvidia cards and nvidia closed drivers. Anybody with a GeForce 256 and above should be able to play the game on 400mhz and above machine. If you have a 3dfx card, you will find it a lot of trouble to play the game. Those with radeons should get the latest dri source from cvs. The developer of dri (Gareth Hughes) was on the beta team and has been working to get dri working with Tribes2. And support Loki, they are doing wonderfull things.
  • The games can be ordered from Tux Games [tuxgames.com] (Alpha Centauri [tuxgames.com] and Tribes 2 [tuxgames.com]). We are also selling the discount bundle [tuxgames.com].
  • The problem is X-windows just isn't mature enough for the home market. It's only been around what, 15 years? Get cut and paste across different programs, get click and drag, get better graphical performance, and maybe we'd have something.
    --
  • by Kingfox (149377) on Thursday April 12, 2001 @06:41AM (#297438) Homepage Journal
    The EB I worked at part time sold out of the Windows limited edition tin, and had a half dozen Linux tins lying around from the day it shipped until recently, when most got handed back to the home office. They probably only sold about one or two copies in the store itself, perhaps the home office decided to sell them online for next to nothing? They do that every so often for various games.

    The home office also recently shipped new store layout plans regarding a linux section, so the store finally has a linux section. No Mac section, but a linux games section. :-)
  • I find Linux games to be easier to install than Windows games. This is because I know how to install both, and installing the Linux ones take less time... hence, they are "easier to install".

    I don't have to reboot. I don't have to worry about the game installation causing my system to reboot into "safe mode". I don't have to reboot, again. I don't have to delete five AOL icons from my desktop, start menu, and system tray (or their GNOME equivalents). I don't have to reboot after I play the game. I don't have to reinstall the applications that the game broke by overwriting critical shared libraries. I don't have to reboot after the system crashes every second time I start the game if its the first thing I launch after I log in.

    All I have to do, is read the !@#$!@#$ directions and type exactly what they say and the game works.
    ---
  • You are correct that my anecdotal evidence is just as meaningless.

    So, here's some not-so-anecdotal evidence:

    - Linux games do not update any libraries on your Linux system. They REQUIRE libraries. Or they provide libraries which are for their own use, and reside only in their own directory hierarchy. Many Windows games will update system DLLs, as is the norm for Windows software. Updating system DLLs without great care results in a condition commonly referred to as "DLL Hell" on a Windows9x-based machine.

    - Linux does not require rebooting for installation of new software. Windows often does.

    - Any decent Linux software is either packaged or installs entirely in its own directory (or in appropriate unique /bin,/lib/,/share... directories. Package management on a Linux system controls ownership of ever file resulting in clean uninstallation, where on a Windows machine, an uninstall can often delete critical DLLs.


    ---
  • by e_n_d_o (150968) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @07:52PM (#297442)
    Aimed at political leftists?

    Sure, I see the connection... its open source, and somehow if one thinks hard enough they can conjure up a relation to socialism, which obviously to us right-wingers-living-in-our-bomb-shelters might as well be communism spelled differently.

    Well, I'm pretty far to the right... and I love Linux. Most of my friends are right-wing too... they also "get it" when it comes to Linux. I like Linux for the same reasons you do... it does what its told and doesn't fuck up every third time like certain other OSes. We evil right-wing capitalists lose a shitload of money when our servers don't run... so we like things that don't crash. We also don't like spending more money when a better solution requires spending less money.

    No heavyweight applications?

    As for heavyweight applications, well, Linux has plenty. How about Apache? (60% of the Web). Oracle? DB2? First-tier Java support? (I personally love this one, as its saved/made my company hundreds of thousands of dollars.)

    Desktop apps, you say?....WordPerfect, CorelDraw, Gimp, KOffice, and StarOffice, Gnumeric, GNUCash... and more little utility apps (Napster clones, MP3 players, FTP clients, Clock applets, Solitaire/Minesweeper games, and NetLoad meters than a big horse can shit.

    The only apps I need to make me never even want to look at a Windows box again are CounterStrike and a Mozilla 1.0 based Galeon. I'll put my Mom on it once we get to the point where all desktop-oriented tasks (including software installation/management and hardware configuration) can be done without using a shell. (And Ximian seems to be making some VERY NICE progress on both these fronts).

    ---
  • This being Slashdot, I smell conspiracy! Microsoft is behind these ports. Seems unlikely...let me explain...

    Deep in college campuses and cheap apartments across the country, programmers are working long into the night to get more and more advanced versions of Linux out. Undeterred by lack of support and Micro$oft FUD, nothing can stop them. Thta is until, they get a copy of Alpha Centauri...three months later, they are stil working far into the night, but this time it is to get enough artilerry together to biseige that one enemy coastal city...and hacking ther kernel is left far behind.

  • by DeeKayWon (155842) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @07:12PM (#297446)
    1)Get DirectX support. I'm sorry, but the whole of the gaming worl uses it. If you don't support it, you are stuffed. Even consoles are getting it, like the XBox. Games that don't use it, such as WuakeIII, are very dificult to install.

    There's already SDL [libsdl.org], which has been getting some nice, positive feedback as a good, cross-platform multimedia API. Note that Win32 is one of those platforms. Oh, and the API has nothing to do with the install. If you've ever tried a Loki game installation, they're really smooth and easy. Unreal Tournament installed just fine on my system.

    3)Get some bloody normal people to use the OS.

    And one of the best ways to lure users is to get some games for it. Loki porting some Windows games to Linux is a step in that direction. Face it, the general public is not even going to consider Linux as their OS until there's a good selection of games for it.

    It alkso needs new games, not 12 month old crap like what is being touted here.

    Neither game is crap, and only one of them is as old as you say. Tribes 2 has only been out for Windows for what, 1-2 weeks, tops?

  • Well, actaully, I heard that on the same box, the Linux version is faster, but I haven't seen the guy who did the test latly, so I dont know the numbers
  • One of my friends has been waiting on Alpha Centauri on Linux since they announced it. What was the holdup? I heard some rumor that the game was actually finished but it was held up because of package design issues or some junk like that. Anybody have any better idea? At least with Daikatana there was a whole new game to design terribly.
  • Even if the parent`s attitude sucks, he`s still right on the directX AND market issue. It might not be very insightfull or anything, but he`s right. DirectX is only parallelled by expensive proprietry SDK`s for e.g. PS2, so the gaming industry embraces free API`s like DX easily. Allthough linux is "open", the API`s are not as straightforward in use as DX is (im not talking performance or design here), and they allways work as predicted. The large number of Linux distributions confuses and potentially compromise compatibility. DX supports most, if not all, top of the bill hardware, whereas Linux hw-drivers will usually lag a little. The potential user base is much larger, and unlike linux software, windows games rarely need (debug) patches afterwards, free or not.

    You may not like what is, but that`s not a reason to kill a man`s opinion.

    The nature of the linux crowd simply is a bit difficult to target by game companies, because they don`t know if they need to play the good guy`s with the sensible OS approach (VERY small market), or the pinguin braindeads that fly up whenever somebody insults a word ending on ux (substantially bigger, but still small, market).

    Piece.

  • by andr0meda (167375) on Thursday April 12, 2001 @04:18AM (#297456) Homepage Journal
    It`s acually very simple:

    Forget products
    Forget distributions
    Forget boxed games on the shelves


    This is what will happen:
    You donwload the installer of your favourite game, install the thing on your fancy OS of choice, start it up, enter your VISA/Mastercard number, and wait a few seconds for the game to contact servers. Once the necessay stuff is donwloaded, you can play. When you`re done, the game erases everything except savegames.

    This will work, but only when net congestion ramps down and everybody can say broadband 5 times in a sentence. Essentially it`s SUNs EJB or MSs .NET vision.

    There is just no way people are going to survive on freeware, shareware, or a business model that sells products in the strores to a market that doesn`t really want to buy. See red-hat, breaking even, fnially charging money for it`s agent service. That stuff works, but only because they target the right people (companies) in the right way (easy & clean).
  • I just want to point out that you are exactly Loki's market. Not because you hate Windows, but because you are a Unix user, and get all of your real work done with Linux.

    Generally, these Linux game threads are filled with lots of misguided advocacy - "Buy Loki to 'support' them!" and "Why would a 'gamer' use Linux?". And all of this rather misses the point -- if a desktop user base materializes on Linux (and it is), the games will follow and will be purchased by practical Linux users.
  • 1)Get DirectX support. I'm sorry, but the whole of the gaming worl uses it. If you don't support it, you are stuffed. Even consoles are getting it, like the XBox. Games that don't use it, such as WuakeIII, are very dificult to install.

    Eh? What are you talking about, man? Quake III is no harder to install than your run of the mill DirectX game. Besides, what has the graphics API got to do with the installation process? You troll.

    Oh and by the way, systems like the PS2 seem to be doing pretty well even though they don't use DirectX...

  • Id said that they needed to focus on the game engine before they worried about driver issues
    Fine. That doesn't stop them releasing them both at the same time, it'd never hurt the Mac release to have a longer beta.
    I just have to point out that if Sierra had released the game on the Mac first ...
    What? There's nothing to stop them using the Mac as the development platform. The decisions on what platforms to develop has little to do with it. Id used to use a NeXT development environment, for example. They aren't writing in assembly.
    • 2 chipsets (Intel and AMD, from 300MHz to 1.5GHz)
    • 150 video cards, with constantly-changing drivers
    • 50 sound cards
    • 5 OS'es (Win95, Win98, WinMe, WinNT, Win2K), not counting Linux
    • Various motherboards, RAM configurations, CD-ROM drives, and input devices.
    90% of this is hidden from the program. They shouldn't need to directly access the CD-ROM drive or the BIOS, for example. The OSes and driver issues are the primary problems. Other stuff such as processor type affects performance and is pain during optimization, but should not have much if any impact on stability.
    And thus they said they had to test over 75,000 different hardware configurations
    Poor babies. Every other game company faces the same problems and most of them do ok. Sierra have rushed the product to market, all this other stuff is just excuses.
  • by aussersterne (212916) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @06:54PM (#297484) Homepage
    Many of the already released games are going for $9.99 at EBGames.com! Just search for "linux" when you get there!

    I got Descent 3, Heretic II, Soldier of Fortune, Quake III Arena, Heavy Gear II and Heroes of Might and Magic III this week (six games) for less than $70.00 after shipping!

    And they were fast to ship, too!

    Long live Loki and Loki games! They're identical to the Windows versions on my GeForce2 under XFree86 4.0.

  • I agree with what you said.

    However, I'd like to add that I don't think Windows can even be compared to a Dreamcast or Playstation. People buy console systems to play games. People don't buy Windows to play games. Rather, a lot of people have Windows, and so there is a market for games. It's much like what you said about Linux and games. You happen to be using Linux, so now you are a potential market.

    Remember back in the DOS days when Windows started getting popular? No developer wanted to switch to making Windows games. In fact, DOS games continued to be made, despite Win95 being the default OS everywhere. Eventually developers gave in, and Micrsoft helped them along with DirectX. This is not comparable to a Dreamcast. This is called "following the market".

    Windows is not a gaming platform. It just happens to have many games available for it. I highly doubt any of the current crop of game developers are really much in love with Windows development.

    -Justin
  • by wrinkledshirt (228541) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @08:18PM (#297496) Homepage

    You can get a developer's license of the engine for cheap ($100 and some publishing restrictions) [garagegames.com]

    If this game is successful, and many people playtest the engine and submit bug reports and the folks at Tribes2 keep on top of it, you might see a whole slew of mods that may rival Half-Life's in terms of quality, only this time on the Linux desktop. It'll be a real shot in the arm for linux game development to have this stuff available at large, if it catches on.

    There are some publishing restrictions on the license that you'll probably want to check out if you think this is the way you want to go, but if it'll bring over any programmers from the Windows ballpark, or at least prepare Windows game programmers to work with a game engine that has success on the Linux platform, that increases the chance that we'll get more and better games.

  • It should be noted here that windows is essentially irrelevant in the upper bounds of the workstation market where sheer horsepower and memory are everything.

    I do engineering sims for a living - the engineering world of massive simulation and calculation is owned by Unix and Linx, so it is definately NOT a toy OS.

    Engineers use windows when they get bumped into management and no longer need a high-powered workstation. Period. I see ti every day.

    Ask the Verity or Verplex or hydrodynamics guys which os's they use...and then come back here and tell me which os is the TOY os.

  • Actually NWN is being developed on NT in OpenGL. In the discussion they ruled out DirectX from the begining because they wanted it to run on more than MS.

    OpenGL assures there will be no differences in the different OS'es and they will be compatible in network play. The main reason to develop for linux is they needed STABLE servers since there is no central server. Plus it would suck making a huge world that crashes all the time becuase Windows sucks as a server.

    NWN will rule when it comes out, I've seen it in action and it rules. A few more months and it will be ready to roll.

    Arathres


    I love my iBook. I use it to run Linux!
  • In my experience, its been much easier to get something to work on my Windows box than on a Linux box.

    That's great, if you have a Windows box.

    I don't. I can't stand it. This is not a religious thing or due to a lack of knowledge; I've been using my Unix (and Linux) workstations for longer than DOS has been around, and I'm very comfortable with them. The way I use computers causes major headaches on PCs. I can't explain it. :)

    I'm glad that these games have been added to the collection of games that I'm able to play. I'm ready to order Tribes II, anyway.

    --
    All men are great
    before declaring war

  • It amazes me the lengths people will go to try and convice us that Linux (or Redhat or whatever its called these days) is a viable gaming platform. Time and again the general public has voted with its wallets and bought Windows ME as a games platform or a playstation/dreamcast etc.

    Why do Linux people continue with the fantasy that their operating system is anything other than a tool for elitist, arrogant techies (nost of whom long for the days when computers were hard to use, and resent Microsoft for making computers easy for the man in the street).

    First of all: take a deep breath. Relax.

    I don't think Loki's (or anyone else's) intention is to make Linux a killer gaming platform. I think they're trying to make a few bucks selling games to Linux users.

    I am a Linux user. I use Linux (and other Unix flavors) exclusively. I do so not because of arrogance or a love of things complicated, but because for what I do, it works very well. Sure - occasionally I need to access a Windows application, but I do that through Citrix, or VMware. The other 99% of the time, when I'm irc'ing, web browsing, playing mp3's, playing games, administrating servers, writing documentation, or just screwing around, Windows is a hinderance to my style of computing.

    I am a member of the market that Loki is targetting. If they create a new market at the same time - great! That would be awesome. If not, there are still (in theory) enough users like me to support their development costs (and take home a nice piece of change). My $0.02.

    --
    All men are great
    before declaring war

  • ... This is a sad, sad game.

    Before you mod me down, let me explain. As a triber, I enjoyed many things about Tribes. You didn't have to have the fastest machine in the world (133 mhz would do) to run it, it was fast-paced and very fun, and really stable.

    Now we get Tribes 2, after a three year wait. I bought the game for $49.95 from a local store, brought it home, and installed it on my Win2k gaming machine (it's nothing too great, but it plays Q3, Tribes, and various other games really well.)

    The installation process goes fairly well, no big problems. It is a huge game, though, taking 550MB of space (standard install).

    I start the game. Three required patches available (keep in mind, this is the same night the game was released!) I downloaded the patches and attempted to apply them, only to get a few errors regarding the files being invalid.

    To make a long story short, Dynamix shipped a bad disc. I was lucky enough to get it. I went back out and found another copy of Tribes 2 at another store. Came back, uninstalled the previous copy, and installed from the new disc.

    Started Tribes 2 and reapplied the three patches. They applied this time around. Tribes 2 launches and crashes, yet again. I used a fix described at TribalWar [tribalwar.com] in order to switch from OpenGL to Direct3D without entering the game. Restarted the game -- wow, I was in!

    Now it wanted my CD key. Tribes 2 uses an authentication system (Windows XP/Office XP, anyone?) in order to create an account for you to play with other people via the Internet. I input my CD key.

    "CD key rejected. Your key is already in use."

    Uuuuuuuuugh! I reinstalled Tribes 2 and reapplied the patches. Woah, it accepts the CD key. I went ahead and created my account. There are plenty of servers, many with a great ping. I joined a CTF game, to be greeted by none other than a GPF.

    I restarted Tribes 2. Re-entered the game. No GPF this time. Woohoo! I was about to play the most anticipated game of 2001! I join the game, OoO, 40 fps and it looks great.

    I step outside (spawned inside) and my framerate drops to 7fps. This is with everything turned down at 640x480 on a 550 mhz PIII and a Voodoo3 (yes, I know, getting old, but it's way above T2's system requirements stated on the box, which are a 350mhz PII.)

    Needless to say, I switched back to Tribes, which many people seem to be doing. That disc didn't earn its permanent slot in my CD-ROM.

    I decided to read Sierra's message boards, where there was a thread about poor performance. You know what the developer's response was to us 3dfx owners? "Get a newer computer!" And they claim to support 3dfx chipsets from the V2 up.

    Dynamix has taken everything that was great about T1 and thrown it down the drain. You have to have the fastest machine and expect slower gameplay.

    To sum it up:

    • - This game is very buggy, plays like a beta
    • - Very unstable, crashes all the time
    • - Graphics are poor unless you've got a 1.2ghz Athlon and a GeForce 2, even then it's jumpy


    Dynamix was aiming to please people like IGN and Daily Radar, not the common gamer. Definitely not recommended. Many long-time Tribers feel the same as I do.

  • ... The Linux-compatible Tribes 2 engine is being sold, source and all, for $100 by GarageGames [garagegames.com]. They're all ex-Sierra/Dynamix employees with a license.

    You do, however, have to publish your game through GG...

  • by Consultant Jon (265243) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @06:48PM (#297525)
    Am I the only one that is not necessarily pleased by this whole "games for Linux" phenomenon? In my opinion, news like this actually hurts Linux, for at least a couple of reasons:

    1) These games are old. Sorry, but Alpha Centauri? Look, you don't need to convince me it was a great game, but the key word there is "was!" When people on the street see news like this, they'll say "Hmm, so this Linux OS is just now getting this game? It must really be behind the times!"

    2) To promote Linux as a gaming platform is to promote it as a "toy OS." Yes, I'm aware that Windows is heavily promoted as a gaming platform, but how many technically-savvy people would consider it anything less than a toy OS? Windows at least has the strength of having the "heavyweight" office automation package. If the average guy on the street asks what software is available for Linux, what do you say? "Quake III and Emacs?" We can't have the only high-visibility software for Linux be game software, because then Linux becomes a toy OS.

    I think we would do well to avoid having these two misconceptions forced upon Linux. Linux already suffers from the perception of being an operating system that is targeted primarily at political leftists; it would be a shame if we had to add on two more ridiculous and hateful suggestions. I, like most Slashdot readers, love Linux. I know that "Linux is yesterday's technology" is bullshit. I know that "Linux is a toy OS is bullshit." So let's not encourage anything that would lead people to think otherwise, mmmkay?
  • by Consultant Jon (265243) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @07:29PM (#297526)
    All right, how is Linux "targeted primarily at political leftists?"

    Well, maybe this was a bit strongly-worded. But it doesn't take a world-renowned detective to figure out that a lot of the hard-line, anti-corporate, Seattle-protester types are big into Linux. This does not help Linux's public image, IMHO. On top of that, there was the unfortunate (and IMHO hateful) story that Slashdot ran about how Linux was supposed to become the offical OS of the People's Republic of China.

    As I write this we can all be thankful that our servicemen are on their way home from China. But I have to admit that I felt a bit guilty booting into Linux, knowing that those innocent people were being held hostage, while at the same time I was using their captors' favorite OS without giving it a second thought. I know this is silly; "one thing has nothing to do with the other", as they say .. but still, there was some sort of primal guilt that I was powerless to overcome. I keep telling myself that using Linux is not going to turn me into a leftist, but some irrational part of me (that part of the brain that invents monsters under the bed, no doubt) is working overtime to convince me otherwise.

    At any rate, you're right .. I should have left the comment out altogether. It doesn't change my basic position, though. Linux is a serious OS, and anybody that has ever used it is well aware of that. We need to be doing whatever is possible to reinforce its image as a serious OS. Gaming news doesn't help that goal (IMHO.)
  • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @07:23PM (#297536)
    Yes, I'm aware that Windows is heavily promoted as a gaming platform, but how many technically-savvy people would consider it anything less than a toy OS?

    I'm not quite sure what you're saying here. If you mean howmany people think that Windows is nothing more than a Toy OS, you have another thing comming. Most companies, you know the kind that make cool stuff to buy, and make money doing it, use Windows at least in part. Often you'll find that very tech savvy people work at these companies (like, say ID Software). Windows is not, by any stretch of the imagination a toy OS. It is used for games, but it is also used to do lots of serious work.

    Actually, if I had to call any OS a toy OS, it would be Linux, but I don't mean that in a condecending way. Linux is a great os for people that want to play around. You have porbably a hundred different WMs to choose from and countless looks. You can hack around with the kernal and basically, play with the OS to your heart's content. It's the ultimate toy OS in that it's a hacker's toy. It's great fun for techies to play with and really, that's how it got its start.

  • motorsabbath wrote, "I wonder why I got -1 trolled for that"

    Beats me, but I just metamodded the two guys who "troll -1"ed you as "unfair."

  • the guy self promoted. Look at how far it fell back down. He pulled the same stunt in another recent thread. Damn good troll i think. look at the results
  • by janpod66 (323734) on Wednesday April 11, 2001 @09:25PM (#297541)
    You can spend hours chasing big, nasty bugs in /usr/src/linux, building new worlds in gcc/g++, creating art in the Gimp, creating artificial life in Objective-C, etc.

    Seriously, I haven't been holding my breath for commercial gaming companies to port to Linux. There are some nice Linux games out there, and I'd much rather see the tradition of open source games continue. The classic UNIX games (rogue, etc.) are great, and they are great because lots of people contributed. I think the gameplay is still better than in most of the commercial games. Let's bring back that tradition.

  • Now only if they would port asherons call over to linux native. I would be very happy.

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