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John Carmack On Linux Gaming Support

A comment on reddit by id Software co-founder John Carmack (thanks Develop) follows the theme of a recent post by former id programmer Timothee Besset indicating that id's once-strong support for Linux gaming has waned. The post basically confirms and explains that premise, discussing how he sees a plausible path for Linux gaming via emulation on Steam, if "properly evangalized," but expressing skepticism about commercial native Linux ports:

However, I don’t think that a good business case can be made for officially supporting Linux for mainstream games today, and Zenimax doesn’t have any policy of “unofficial binaries” like Id used to have. I have argued for their value (mostly in the context of experimental Windows features, but Linux would also benefit), but my forceful internal pushes have been for the continuation of Id Software’s open source code releases, which I feel have broader benefits than unsupported Linux binaries.

I can’t speak for the executives at Zenimax, but they don’t even publish Mac titles (they partner with Aspyr), so I would be stunned if they showed an interest in officially publishing and supporting a Linux title. A port could be up and running in a week or two, but there is so much work to do beyond that for official support. The conventional wisdom is that native Linux games are not a good market. Id Software tested the conventional wisdom twice, with Quake Arena and Quake Live. The conventional wisdom proved correct. Arguments can be made that neither one was an optimal test case, but they were honest tries.

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47. Re: John Carmack On Linux Gaming Support Feb 6, 2013, 17:17 DanteUK
So sad Carmack has given up on Linux when it has so much to offer.

Ozmodan wrote on Feb 6, 2013, 09:39:
People are just whining because they have to buy windows.

Yep, it takes a lot of extra disk space and costs a lot of money just so I can play an already expensive game on my otherwise perfectly usable PC running free software to do everything, except top 10% of games.
The rest will work either natively or using wine.
I duel boot, the last time I booted into windows was to play FarCry3, not booted Windows since I completed it, won't have need to boot it again till I splash out on another major title like that, maybe in a couple of months time, maybe longer.

Personally I enjoyed playing Quake3 and QuakeLive, Doom3 and ET:QW and Quake 4, all using native Linux ports.
I except it's not going to make you much money, but a couple of weeks to do a port is not that big a deal if it opens up the game to larger number of people.

OpenGL is perfectly able to handle the graphics, OpenAL is pretty close for the sound( but not perfect ) I'm sure there are fairly standard libraries for input code. All of which should mean a native port is possible and WILL run better than using Wine.
If Windows was perfect we wouldn't need Linux!! so why bother emulating it!! it just adds another layer of crap between the game code and real libraries that do the work.
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