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Steam Not Coming To Linux 520

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the put-yer-pants-back-on dept.
dkd903 writes "A rumor has been going around for about four months that Valve was working on a Linux version of Steam and this had a lot of people in the Linux community very excited. But, Valve has now officially killed the rumor. And it is not what people wants to hear – there is no Linux version of Steam in development. Doug Lombardi, the Marketing VP of Valve Corporation, in an interview, has put an end to all the rumors by saying that they are not working on Steam for Linux right now."
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Steam Not Coming To Linux

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  • by odies (1869886) * on Monday August 23, 2010 @08:57AM (#33339610)

    It's not really a surprise. To begin with 99% of commercial games don't even have a Linux version, so there's nothing to sell to Linux gamers. You can't really rely on emulation either, if you sell the game as a Linux version you really have to do a native build. Then there are hundreds of different Linux distros and configurations which all work a little bit different. Also, just imagine the outcry about DRM and Valve not open sourcing Steam or it's games. The whole open source and everything-must-be-free mentality goes against businesses. You can already read here on slashdot how some people refuse to use Steam because it might go down in 50 years. This thinking is 100x worse with Linux users.

    I think the problem with Linux is that those who develop it push their philosophy too much and refuse to give room for other philosophies, along with way too much spread ecosystem (distros, configurations, all the problems). There's a reason why we still haven't seen the year of Linux on desktop and probably never will. As much as I dislike Apple, if you want an UNIX based desktop OS you get a Mac.

  • I'm glad (Score:3, Insightful)

    by rshxd (1875730) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:01AM (#33339658)
    Linux is for serious business. If you want to goof around, buy a Mac
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:05AM (#33339706)

    Most serious gamers have dual-boot or a console. There aren't many sales to be gained, honestly.

    Linux would have more to gain by this than Valve, and it's not like it's a priority for the Linux community...

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:05AM (#33339708)

    Everything you posted in the first portion was a statement of fact:

    1. games aren't linux based right now
    2. wine isn't perfectly reliable
    3. there are a lot of distros out there
    4. people who use linux tend to outcry against drm

    Then you said this, which I believe got you marked as flaimbait

    The whole open source and everything-must-be-free mentality goes against businesses.

    I think it's quite silly moderation. Not every piece of software falls under the "give it away, sell support and/or advertising" model which has allowed some open source companies to thrive. Many large production games would never have seen the light of day if they had to use the same business model as a Redhat or Google product.

    Why this insight is considered flamebait, I'm not sure.

  • by dreamchaser (49529) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:11AM (#33339758) Homepage Journal

    Last I checked it ran pretty good in Wine (the Source engine too), so it's not a total loss.

    Sure it's not a total loss, but that sort of thing is part of why OS/2 died and Windoze prevailed. OS/2 2.x+ had excellent Windows compatability up to the Win32s API's, which gave many developers little reason to target it with native versions of their code.

  • Re:I'm glad (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:12AM (#33339770)

    Developing Ruby on Rails "apps" on your MacBook while taking multiple dicks up the butt is not "serious business".

  • Re:Wine (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:14AM (#33339784)

    I don't see how much overhead it would take a developer to do a couple of tests against Wine for Linux targetable games. Wine is stable now and works pretty good. I have quite a pile of Loki ports and to be honest, the windows version usually works better with Wine on my modern linux system.

    For non-free software, a binary is a binary is a binary, as long as it works I don't really sweat the API they've developed to.

  • by Spad (470073) <slashdotNO@SPAMspad.co.uk> on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:16AM (#33339814) Homepage

    I think the problem with Linux is that those who develop it push their philosophy too much and refuse to give room for other philosophies

    I'm probably going to upset a lot of people here by comparing Linux to religion; specifically Christianity, but the others are just as guilty of it:

    When Monty Python's Life of Brian was released the church was up in arms about it, protesting and demanding it was banned because *they* didn't like it and *they* felt it was unacceptable for people to watch, that it had a negative effect on the church because it went against what they believed in. It never occurred to them that *other* people might be quite happy to go and see it without any issues at all, they just saw it as their duty to protect all us witless heathens from ourselves.

    A lot of Linux users are exactly the same with anything closed source; *they* don't want closed source software and drivers because *they* feel it's unacceptable for people to use them and that it will have a negative effect on Linux because it goes against what they believe in. It never occurs to them that *other* people might be quite happy to use closed source software & drivers without any issues at all and just see it as their duty to protect all us witless heathens from ourselves.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:17AM (#33339824)

    It's not really a surprise. To begin with 99% of commercial games don't even have a Linux version

    And in other news, fire is hot. Thank you Captain Obvious.

    , so there's nothing to sell to Linux gamers. You can't really rely on emulation either, if you sell the game as a Linux version you really have to do a native build.

    If you plan on selling a game for any platform, you need a native build. Again, thank you Captain Obvious.

    Then there are hundreds of different Linux distros and configurations which all work a little bit different.

    And? Would't be hard to have a system requirement Debian base? You know ... like many games require Windows Vista +, so you are fscked on XP or 2000.

    Also, just imagine the outcry about DRM and Valve not open sourcing Steam or it's games.

    VMWare Workstation ran/runs fine on Linux without open sourcing it. Nobody complains. As for DRM, not many people complain about Steam anyways.

    The whole open source and everything-must-be-free mentality goes against businesses.

    Yes because Redhat are bankrupt and Novell also and IBM too and oh yes, Google also.

    You can already read here on slashdot how some people refuse to use Steam because it might go down in 50 years.

    Is anything wrong with people standing up for their principals, morals, ethics, beleifs? Next thing you are going to complain about people refusing to eat meat because they beleive about animal rights?

    This thinking is 100x worse with Linux users.

    I think the problem with Linux is that those who develop it push their philosophy too much and refuse to give room for other philosophies

    Because you made a scientific survey of Linux users with a good statistical sample so you can come to the conclusion that Linux users are 100x worse? Nice ad hominem sopssa, nice ad hominem.

    There's a reason why we still haven't seen the year of Linux on desktop and probably never will.

    The desktop is dead. And Linux is already taking over the mobile space, the next big market.

    As much as I dislike Apple, if you want an UNIX based desktop OS you get a Mac.

    You dislike the US, Apple, Google, Linux and are a China and MS apologist, odies. Or should we call you sopssa? Or SquarePixel? Which sockpuppet's name should we use.

    Nice troll pal, nice troll. Too bad some idiot moderators can't see through.

  • by Ephemeriis (315124) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:20AM (#33339872)

    To begin with 99% of commercial games don't even have a Linux version, so there's nothing to sell to Linux gamers.

    The same could be said of Macs. Part of what made Steam viable on the Mac was Valve porting a number of their games over to the Mac. And they could do it again for Linux if they wanted to...

    Also, just imagine the outcry about DRM and Valve not open sourcing Steam or it's games. The whole open source and everything-must-be-free mentality goes against businesses. You can already read here on slashdot how some people refuse to use Steam because it might go down in 50 years. This thinking is 100x worse with Linux users.

    This, I think, is the real problem.

    I like free stuff as much as the next guy... And I'm not a big fan of DRM in general... But I can at least accept that game developers need to eat, and that I'm not entitled to their games for free, and that Steam is a relatively reasonable platform.

    A lot of folks here on Slashdot disagree with me. A lot of folks here on Slashdot think Steam is an absolutely horrible thing. They wouldn't touch it with a 10' pole. They sure as hell wouldn't install it on their Linux system and purchase games through it.

    I think the Linux market is even smaller than the Mac market... Not because of the number of users out there, but because of the philosophy you see behind so many Linux users.

  • Re:fooled me (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:20AM (#33339874)

    Games require fast access to 3D, audio and controls. Having dozens of distros all doing things their own way is a PITA.

    And the last time I heard someone talk about X, he was saying it's two decades behind in terms of what games require.

    Like it or not, there has to be a single Linux distro with a single specific setup if you want companies to support Linux at all.

  • by gid (5195) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:26AM (#33339930) Homepage

    I'm sure myself along with many other Linux users are perfectly fine with things such as the closed source nvidia drivers. I'm just glad they exist. I'll let the kernel developers and nvidia duke it out on their own tho.

    As long as I don't have to purchase a driver, I'm fine. :)

  • Re:Wine (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Americano (920576) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:27AM (#33339936)

    It would take just as long as testing on windows, and they'd sell a handful of additional copies as a result of that effort.

    And that, in a nutshell, is why they won't bother.

  • by mark72005 (1233572) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:31AM (#33339978)
    You're right that there needs to be more room for the other viewpoints. Personally, it irritates me when I install ubuntu or similar, and drivers that I need for wireless are included in the available libraries, but you have to opt-in to those because they "are not free software". If you know that my wireless card is in there, why not turn it on by default? Why assume I won't want to use a system device unless the driver is "free software"? The assumption should be made in the other direction. Does anyone ever say "oh, it's not free software? Well, I'll just run an ethernet cable across my house! take that, broadcom!"
  • I don't follow (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jorl17 (1716772) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:33AM (#33339994)
    I can't seem to follow this, nor get it straight in my mind.

    It all started as rumors such as this one [dailyradar.com].

    But, then, they announced that it was official and that Valve had announced that it would be launching a Linux version. I do not recall seeing any actual Valve announcement, but this news hit Slashdot like a "Microsoft-is-dead!"-news-issue: http://www.linuxjournal.com/content/its-official-steam-coming-linux [linuxjournal.com]
    And they say:

    We recently touched on one way of being a Linux gamer. Recent news that Valve Software will soon be releasing a Linux client promises to provide another option for Linux gamers. The news could not come at a better time as the world will shortly focus on gaming with the upcoming, industry-only E3 conference, the crown jewel of the gaming industry.

    While there are still no details on the list of game titles that will be available, the announcement alone is reason for any Linux gamer to get excited. Steam is a content delivery system for gamers which allows you to buy and download game titles and related media, once you have the client installed.


    So, how do we go from announced to "not happening". Was this "announcement" a fake? It seems like it was...otherwise someone is BS me...
  • by Macrat (638047) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:33AM (#33339996)

    To begin with 99% of commercial games don't even have a Linux version, so there's nothing to sell to Linux gamers.

    The same could be said of Macs. Part of what made Steam viable on the Mac was Valve porting a number of their games over to the Mac. And they could do it again for Linux if they wanted to...

    Most Mac owners actually BUY software.

  • by rtb61 (674572) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:36AM (#33340034) Homepage

    Linux is open source and covers many different groups. You fall guilty of the same nonsense using what was originally an M$ marketing strategy to paint all Linux users the same.

    Governments use it, corporations use it, the military uses it, the bulk of ISP's use it. The majority use it to save time, hassle and of course money. Some use it because of greater control they can exercise over it.

    Really it is no different to defining all M$ coders as tiny limp windrones and that statement is also not true.

    Back on topic what was interesting was the answer, 'There's no Linux version that we're working on right now', so there is a Linux version and they are no longer working on it but will likely do so again in the future, likely subject to the success of smart books and Android and Linux code merging a bit.

    At a guess you most likley will see and Android version for smartbooks and even phones first, all that late 90s early 2000s software ported across.

  • by locallyunscene (1000523) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:36AM (#33340038)
    The same can be said of any ideology. Do you believe it is better to have access to the source code, or do you believe that companies will fairly use the trust you have given them to create better products? You think you know the answer that is best for you and they think they know the answer that is best for them. They aren't "forcing" anything on you like most religions I know.
  • Excuse me? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by voss (52565) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:40AM (#33340074)

    Who is "They" and how many is a "lot"????

    I use closed source nvidia drivers with no particular ethical issues.
    Most linux users (more than 50%) would be perfectly happy if their favorite game
    worked on linux whether it was closed source or open source, native linux or WINE.

    As a linux user I will say his "holiness" Richard Stallman does not speak for me.

  • Re:fooled me (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Goaway (82658) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:43AM (#33340108) Homepage

    The reason your programs all work is that everybody is forced to live with the limitations and don't actually make the kind of programs that would have big problems with the different distros.

    Like, for instance, closed-source modern games.

  • Re:I don't follow (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Lunix Nutcase (1092239) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:45AM (#33340132)

    Protip: Those rumors had no basis in reality.. This is why you should not trust Phoronix as a source of reliable information in addition to their crappy benchmarks with questionable methodology.

  • Re:Serious gamers (Score:4, Insightful)

    by thousandinone (918319) on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:46AM (#33340142) Journal
    A contradiction in terms? On what do you base that claim exactly? Someone who has a crime on their record is a criminal, regardless of whether they're actively breaking the law or not. If you've ever paid a speeding ticket rather than (successfully) contesting it in court, you are by definition a law-abiding criminal.

    Similarly, Anyone who takes any form of game seriously would meet the definition of 'serious gamer;' professional sports come to mind, as well as the 'serious business' gaming crowd. And one can be dedicated without being serious, just as one can take something seriously without being particularly dedicated to it.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @09:48AM (#33340168)

    No, they were not running on an emulator.
    Those are games directly ported to Windows without making the game more suitable for the PC.
    Despite the console-like menu's and controls, what you received is actually a native build for Windows.

  • Re:fooled me (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @10:03AM (#33340396)

    "No, it isn't. You target SDL, OpenAL, et cetera. They work fine on the popular distributions, i.e. the ones you have to care about."

    What about reliable unified sound support, hows that comming along?

  • by somersault (912633) on Monday August 23, 2010 @10:04AM (#33340418) Homepage Journal

    WINE isn't an emulator any more than DirectX and OpenGL are emulators..

  • by GuerillaRadio (818889) on Monday August 23, 2010 @10:12AM (#33340554)

    http://www.techdirt.com/blog/entrepreneurs/articles/20100518/0844299463.shtml

    "The other interesting tidbit, as many noted, is that despite suggestions from some that the "open source" world are folks who "just want stuff for free," the average amount paid by Linux users ($14.52) was significantly higher than those paid by Mac ($10.18) or Windows ($8.05) users."

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @10:24AM (#33340760)

    Maybe because the tiny 24" monitor has a better resolution?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @10:29AM (#33340868)

    Yeah, it's as fucking stupid and childish as typing "M$" instead of "MS" is.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @10:33AM (#33340944)

    what does you being too lazy to hook up a few cables from your pc to your home theater system have to do with steam on linux?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @10:33AM (#33340946)

    "M$" and "windrones"? Did you just wake up from early 2000s cryogenic suspension? Here's something to help: we hate Apple now.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @10:36AM (#33340996)
    4.5 kilowatts of sound is roughly equivalent to 20 Marshall guitar amplifier full-stacks blasting out with their volume set to 11. You must be stone deaf by now. Which I guess explains why you need that much power...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @10:57AM (#33341396)

    Last time I checked my Xbox360 didn't output 7.1

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @11:17AM (#33341722)

    Once someone uses M$ I stop reading.

  • by interkin3tic (1469267) on Monday August 23, 2010 @11:17AM (#33341728)

    Moderated troll, and 7 replies all arguing that he should be playing on the PC instead of the 360, and people act as if console fanboys are bad...

  • Re:Excuse me? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TheNumberless (650099) on Monday August 23, 2010 @11:20AM (#33341770)

    So he should stop using his browser of choice because if he doesn't, he may someday have to stop using his browser of choice.

  • by mark72005 (1233572) on Monday August 23, 2010 @11:29AM (#33341906)
    But again, much like people who game on Linux, people who game on Windows via HDMI to the TV are a minuscule percent of the market.

    For most people, spending $300 on a console and being done is preferable to spending 3, 4 times that or more on a gaming PC that will outdate itself and come with all the "not as easy as" issues that a PS3 would just eliminate.
  • by danieltdp (1287734) on Monday August 23, 2010 @11:48AM (#33342332)

    So if steam is on Linux, nothing changes from the sales point of view. You will buy Bad Company for Linux instead of Bad Company for Windows.

    My point is, valve is not going to sell much more games. Their audience will just migrate from one OS to another. They (we) will be very happy, but it won't come out as more money to the company.

    Reality is a little cruel sometimes. It would love to get something like steam running on my Linux box. I would be great. But I see their reasoning...

  • by DrgnDancer (137700) on Monday August 23, 2010 @12:08PM (#33342698) Homepage

    But realistically I think people like you are probably less than 1% of the market. I'm not trying to offend you or anything, but the number of people who:

    a) Use Linux as their primary OS.
    b) Use a computer for games extensively.
    c) Are not willing to dual boot or have a separate "game box".
    d) Are willing to pay for the games they play (instead of just playing Tux Racer or Majong)

    is pretty small. Most people who use Linux exclusively are willing to compromise on games (and many would not want to use "non-Free" games even if they were available). Most people who really want games are willing to compromise on OS (Either not using Linux as a primary system, dual booting, or having a "game box").

    How much would it cost to port Steam and any reasonable number of the games on Steam, and would gaining you and the people who agree with you make them more money than that? Steam seems to think not.

  • Re:fooled me (Score:3, Insightful)

    by PeterBrett (780946) on Monday August 23, 2010 @12:30PM (#33343074) Homepage

    What about reliable unified sound support, hows that comming along?

    Uh, that's why you target SDL and OpenAL. Using the power of libraries, they take care of that for you.

  • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Monday August 23, 2010 @02:04PM (#33344586)

    Seriously, Linux users cling to that as their one and only piece of proof that they pay, not realizing how pathetic it is. There are some major, major problems with that:

    1) People made it a cross platform thing, they went out of their way to give more to "Show how good $platform is!" Fine, but that has nothing to do with their normal purchasing habits. They gave more this one time but that doesn't mean they regularly spend money on games.

    2) More importantly, all the numbers are totally pathetic. Linux users paid $13 for 5 games. That is $2.60 per game. Are you fucking kidding me with that? That is supposed to show it as a valid market? Yes, Windows users gave less. Why? Because only the cheapskates were buying. Everyone else owned the games they wanted. I bought World of Goo back when it launched for $20 and considered it a deal. I paid more for one single title in that pack than Linux users paid for the whole damn thing. $20 is also a budget game title, I regularly pay more, as much as $50 for top tier titles.

    So all it really shows is that Linux users are willing to spend a very small amount of money to try and "Prove there's a Linux market." Sorry, not buying the bullshit. You want to impress me? Show me that Linux users would pay retail for each of those games ($40-50). Yes I realize that's above the Windows price since they are indy, however that shows that the market is so hungry for games, they'll pay a lot. Also show me that they'll pay when they just want a game to play, not when they are specifically trying to have a content to make Linux look good.

  • by sammyF70 (1154563) on Monday August 23, 2010 @03:13PM (#33345650) Homepage Journal

    1) shit...someone must have forgotten to send me the memo. I bought the Humble Bundle because the games ranged from good to absolutely amazing, were DRM free, native to the OS I use, and I was able to buy them without breaking my bank account (I paid what I was able to pay at that time, and would have paid more if I had been able to). I didn't know I was doing it to "show how good $platform" is.

    2) So your argument is : "Real Men Pay More"? kind of vain, isn't it? I guess you wouldn't buy any of the ~cheap~ windows games that are available on Steam, in fear someone might see you?!

    my own experience :
    I knew WoG, I already owned the Penumbra trilogy (and in a side note, I've already pre-ordered the next game by Frictional ... just to "prove how Good Linux is" apparently), but I had never heard of Lugaru, Gish or Aquaria before (nor of Samorost for that matter). The Humble Bundle gave me the opportunity to get those games (admitedly for a rather low sum), and I ended up playing through 3 of the 4 games I didn't know ... something that rarely happens when I buy more expensive titles ( mostly from Steam by the way).

    And One Last Thing : paying 50$ to show off your taste in OS (or how large your bank account is) is incredibly stupid.

  • Re:Makes sense (Score:2, Insightful)

    by mcgrew (92797) * on Monday August 23, 2010 @04:38PM (#33346798) Homepage Journal

    You can't sell software to freetards

    If you're wondering why you were modded "troll", your flaming the FOSS community in a Linux thread begs for a downmod.

    After all, "INFORMATION WANTS TO BE FREE" is the freetard mantra

    Free as in speech, idiot. You know what? Almost every Linux user has bought at least one copy of Windows, even if it was pre-installed and they wiped it.

    BTW, a "freetard" is someone who is too retarded to understand the concept of freedom. That's you, son.

  • Re:I'm glad (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Culture20 (968837) on Monday August 23, 2010 @06:28PM (#33348280)

    when you walk in and the guys doing the hiring have Macs.

    If HR is using Macs, then I'm leery about even interviewing. Sure, there's a chance that IT is using a nice puppet/ARD/filewave/ssh/whatever combo to administer end users' machines, but it's more likely that the scenario is one where end users are admins of their own boxes and they've installed every trojan under the sun, and the "admins" choose xserves because all they know is Mac OS X. *shiver*

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