Support for good old Linux unlikely for Good Old Games
GOG.com marketing and PR head Trevor Longino confirmed on Thursday that the game distribution site will not be supporting Linux in the future.
According to Longino, the lack of support doesn't come from technical hurdles but rather from the company's dedication to quality customer support. The website has a policy that a full refund is offered to any customer who can't get a game to run. This becomes troublesome when considering the many distributions that Linux has to offer.
GOG.com has even considered openly supporting all Linux distributions and allowing customers to perform their own troubleshooting, but such actions aren't viable business solutions, according to Longino.
Longino also stated that GOG.com doesn't wish to support only a specific distribution of Linux like Steam currently does. While Steam does support Linux, it focuses entirely on the Ubuntu distribution with Unity, GNOME or KDE GUI systems. According to Steam's Linux support page, anyone who uses a distribution other than Ubuntu can't be officially supported by Valve's Steam support team.
Another issue is how often Linux distributions are updated, Longino said. Linux distributions are updated often, and different distributions are never entirely in sync with one another. GOG.com believes this would cause severe problems if it were to offer Linux support. According to Longino, the website estimated it would have to remaster games every 14-16 months to provide viable support.
Do the Linux g1s out there agree with this conclusion?
» Source: http://www.gameinformer.com/b/news/archive/2013/09/08/linux-support-unlikely-for-gog-com.aspx
» Tagged In: #GOG.com, #Linux, #steam, #Ubuntu
I use Desura and Steam. Desura is made by the creator of modDB, sadly does not support mods under liunx, but is a good repository for generic linux compilations. Some game some issues under some distros, and you need a graphic card with OpenGL support. There are prenty of indie games, made fully open source and open for modding, and even a huge catalog of emulators. I also can configure browser game to be controled by a magepad, so some casual games like "robot wants kitty" becames a short, but fut retro platformer.
Linux users need to accept that the fast updates on a large number of platform just isn't going to work moving forward. Steam is an unstoppable behemoth and is focusing a exceptional amount of resources on making the words "Linux" and "Ubuntu" mean the same thing in the eyes of the public. They are absolutely going to succeed. In the near future will be be installing a custom Ubuntu build from steam directly, and they will publish drivers for it, which will auto-update using the same system steam uses right now to keep your windows drivers up to date. On top of that, a Linux dev right now you have two options; you can test your game on Ubuntu and have steam market it to 45 million people or you can test it on any other build and have it sell via ... word of mouth basically. It's not going to take long for this change to happen.
They future of Linux is going to be like Android on phones right now ... you will still have mods and custom builds, but the onus will be to make them compatible with the standard.
The only true issue I had with my Ubuntu run was when it came to 3D graphics. I tried to run WoW a few times, was successful for a short while, and then everything sharded out and crashed. As for some of Steam's more lighthearted stuff, I had zero issues -- and this was before any official Steam support.
Windows has a lot of unnecessary problems and bugs. I never thought it was that bad until I found out how much better it could be done. You're friend may just use it for less overhead, but that's far from all Linux has to offer. Many aspects core to the OS are constantly updated and stabilized, one of the things the company complained about. It has an assortment of features that Windows/Mac OS users get on average 4-6 years later, most of which you can choose whether to include or not, as opposed to Windows where most included features are installed, running, and always in use even if you don't want them. And finally it's infinitely customizable to the point where it makes Windows and Mac OS both laughable. And I've seen speed increases up to 40% on the same hardware Windows runs on; not just old hardware either, new hardware as well.
However I do agree with their decision in providing software customer support. There are many distributions of the OS and they can be tweaked many ways. In Linux you can upgrade any one part without touching anything else. It would be like on Windows wanting to upgrade from Windows XP but being able to choose to upgrade just the kernel (main operating component to your os) without updating the window scheme or extras or vice versa. So you couldn't just ask the customer "What version of Linux are you running?" and expect to get all the information you need.
But to remove the ability to do it at all I think is stupid. If you make it available mainstream Linux users will figure it out without any help, and they tend to make articles to help less mainstream Linux users make it work if they want to take the time.
Like mressex said though, Steam supports Linux in the way I suggested. I suppose Linux users will just stick with that.
Here's just a sample of some BASIC features that are included with Ubuntu. Some are just cosmetic, and some useful ones are also found on Mac OS and Windows. But it contains most of the features from both and most were included before they were with the big players. And these are features of the KDE desktop. Linux allows you to pick many many other desktops (meaning the GUI features that are included) or even multiple at once.
Have a look either way. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vKp9WvZv7J8
That doesn't mean it doesn't still work better with supported newer hardware. Less overhead is less overhead and that's a good thing on a computer built today or one 10 years ago. And it's free! Windows 8 is $140 dollars if you buy it at full retail. I understand that Linux is a bit of a niche market, especially since it's largely built around freeware in the first place, so I do think it's understandable. I just think it's disappointing. I run both a Windows machine and several Linux machines, and this sort of thing keeps me with their competition....
As a Linux user (haven't used Windows for about six years), I don't really care. Steam is a far larger market and/or has the potential to be moreso than GOG. Linux isn't just "better" with older hardware. It works with nearly the same amount of "Windows" supported hardware.
I spoke with someone who was having issues with Linux and I asked him why would anyone bother with it when Windows 7 is fine and he told me that it has less overhead so it works better with older hardware. Which kind of makes it pointless to use it as a gaming platform to me. Hope there's no one who's so disappointed that they feel entitled to support for this fringe OS. I'm not exactly a fan of Microsoft, but c'mon. If you wanted software support, you should've gone with Windows. Windows: It's actually not that bad.™
I don't use Linux but I completely understand where they are coming from. I always forget how many variations are out there and I can see how that would be problematic for a business to make the decision of "all or nothing" rather than just pick one.