With the recent announcement by Valve that they’re working on a Linux version of their uber popular digital store for games, Steam, and excellent co-operative-based first person zombie shooter, Left 4 Dead 2; other developers are following suit. Developer Croteam is now working on a Linux version of their underrated shooter Serious Sam 3: BFE.
“We're in the process of integrating Steamworks and achievements and the whole shebang, but we can't get the little fucker of a penguin to stand still,” said publisher Devolver Digital's chief financial officer Fork Parker in the announcement.
This is good news for all those people who have wanted to get rid of the Windows partition on their hard drive but can’t because of the lack of games on Linux. The number of games available on Linux is about to swell considerably due to Valve working on getting Steam on the Ubuntu distribution of Linux – an operating system previously mostly used by hackers and developers.
Coming Soon to Linux!
The reason they picked Ubuntu is because they want to first work on a single distribution, as it reduces the variability of testing space and makes early iterations easier and faster. Another reason for picking Ubuntu is because it is one of the most popular distributions of Linux, and “has recognition with the general gaming and developer communities,” according to Valve’s Linux blog.
The blog states that this doesn’t mean that Steam won’t make it to other distributions. They will look at supporting other distributions in the future based on the success of their efforts on Ubuntu.
The blog states that Gabe Newell, head of Valve, had been interested in the possibility of moving Steam and the Source Engine to Linux. The blog says, “At the time, the company was already using Linux by supporting Linux-based servers for Source-based games and also by maintaining several internal servers (running a 64-bit version of Ubuntu server) for various projects. In 2011, based on the success of those efforts and conversations in the hallway, we decided to take the next step and form a new team. At that time, the team only consisted of a few people whose main purpose was investigating the possibility of moving the Steam client and Left 4 Dead 2 over to Ubuntu.”
Currently, Valve has stated that the main goal with the project is to have a fully-featured Steam client running on Ubuntu 12.04. “We’ve made good progress this year and now have the Steam client running on Ubuntu with all major features available.”
Valve aims to port Left 4 Dead 2 to Ubuntu since there isn’t much point to Steam if there aren’t any games. This would test the game features of Steam, as well as the gameplay of Left 4 Dead 2 on Ubuntu. “Over the last few months, excellent progress has been made on several fronts and it now runs natively on Ubuntu 12.04.” Their aim now is to have the game running on Ubuntu as well as it does on Windows.
The release date for the Linux version of Serious Sam 3: BFE is unkown, but it will be available on the Linux version of Steam.
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