Gabe Newell Thinks Steam Can Help Mainstream Linux

Rad Party God

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Feb 23, 2010
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I tried Linux like circa 2005 and I went back to XP.

Gabe's right about Win 8 sucking hard, I certainly won't be changing Win 7 for anything else for a while, but I'm still doubtful about Linux being a viable platform for gaming. If Steam makes the miracle of importing it's whole, entire library (*drools*) completely playable wihtout any hassle in Linux, I'll may consider giving it a try.
 

SquidVicious

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From what I've read, a lot of people have just finally made the switch from Windows XP to Windows 7 so I doubt many of them are willing to make the upgrade again to an even newer operating system. Sure there will be people who want bleeding edge technology, but they are always in the minority and often represent people who would describe themselves as tech savvy. The average PC user just wants something that works, and while I've been a native Linux user for 4 years now, I've had to really force myself to figure out how to fix certain things, and more than once I've had to completely wipe my hard drive and start over because either an update or my carelessness as root user messed broke my system.

If anything, the lineup of games that run is going to be what pushes people who are on the fence about making the switch. I imagine most, if not all of Valve's own games will be among the first along with Amnesia: The Dark Descent and any of the games featured in the Humble Indie Bundles.
 

Rednog

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I hate to be a pessimist, but I really don't see this mainstreaming Linux. Valve/Steam is no Good Old Games, they don't ensure that the games they offer through their service even run. So their plan is to make games in general be able to run natively, that's all well and good for people who know and use Linux, but who wants to deal with the headache of navigating linux when a problem with a game occurs? Steam/Valve doesn't exactly go the extra mile to try and fix something like that, it ends up being the users problem to search the forums and figure it out; and if it doesn't work don't expect a refund. It's already a pain(sometimes)to navigate through windows to try and fix a problem with a game, does anyone honestly think people are eager to navigate the workings of a completely new OS?
 

Steve the Pocket

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Unless Valve's plans include starting a porting company that's meant to be Linux's answer to Aspyr or Feral Interactive, the result is going to be a poorly-performing launcher/store for indie games and little else. So basically a downgrade from what Ubuntu's App Store already provides, other than Valve's own games.

And as for Windows 8... I think people are overstating how bad it's going to be for power users. The built-in app store apparently isn't even compatible with "desktop" style apps, so the Windows desktop becoming a closed platform isn't going to happen any time soon. Microsoft may be incredibly stupid, but they're also cowardly. They don't have the balls to pull off a move like that.
 

Evil Smurf

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ohnoitsabear said:
Evil Smurf said:
Sorry but what is wrong with windows 8? I mean I have a Mac which normally entitles me to "hipster elitism". But can anyone tell me why it will suck? does it crash heaps?, is it prone to viruses? is it too complicated? Do all the cool kids have Mac envy?
The biggest thing for the everyday users is that they've divided Windows into two separate interfaces; the traditional windows interface, and a newfangled "Metro" interface, which completely replaces the start menu from past windows. The problem with Metro is that it's designed primarily for a touchscreen, with a mouse and keyboard (aka the inputs that a vast majority of the people that use this OS will be using) being an afterthought. Touchscreen interfaces do not work well with a mouse, definitely not as well as the normal windows interface.

This, in itself, probably wouldn't be too bad, except that you're basically required to use the Metro interface. The programs on each interface are completely separate from one another, meaning that if a program is only on Metro, you have no choice but to use it. That, and the functions that were normally relegated to the start menu are now in Metro, making it impossible not to use it at all.

Microsoft is also apparently doing things to make Windows more of a closed system, although I'm not entirely sure what all of these things are.

EDIT: I also want to add that I am super psyched for Steam on Linux. The less that I need to use windows, the better.
That sucks! That is the reason I use a Mac and Linux, they are user friendly. Also I am less likely to get a virus.

OT: I am glad Steam is coming to Linux, looking forward to that for ages
 

Worgen

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Whatever, just wash your hands.
Hmm, if valve can standardize the drivers a bit on linux then it could become a pretty big platform for gaming.
 

saintdane05

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Problem:

While Steam is available for Linux, how many GAMES on Steam are on Linux?

I have a similar problem with my Mac, where I look at a game on Steam that may be interesting, but then it shows that its Window's only.
 

tomvw

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robert01 said:
sudo apt-get install steam-daemon && sudo apt-get install no-games

That is what is going to happen, I think it is a nice effort, but Steam isn't going to help Linux become 'mainstream'. Until driver developers (looking at AMD/NVIDIA) actually start giving fuck about the stuff they release for Linux nothing will change.
The problem with AMD/NVIDIA is that their own drivers are supplied in compiled binary format (ie closed source) and the open-source variants are WAY behind in terms of features and performance. It's really odd, considering NVIDIA contributes heavily to Android, since they make Tegra-chips for smartphones and tablets (granted that's ARM instead of x86, but still).

Anyway, Linus Torvalds puts it best:
http://www.theverge.com/2012/6/17/3092829/linus-torvalds-fuck-you-nvidia

As for Steam for Linux, it might help a bit, but I don't see it taking of unless someone implements DirectX on Linux. Almost all of the big name titles (id Software's games being the exception) use DirectX as API, and porting to OpenGL is easier said than done.
Either way, I'm at least intrigued to see what Valve are able to pull of. But until then I'll stick with my Windows machine.
 

Plazmatic

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Evil Smurf said:
ohnoitsabear said:
Evil Smurf said:
Sorry but what is wrong with windows 8? I mean I have a Mac which normally entitles me to "hipster elitism". But can anyone tell me why it will suck? does it crash heaps?, is it prone to viruses? is it too complicated? Do all the cool kids have Mac envy?
The biggest thing for the everyday users is that they've divided Windows into two separate interfaces; the traditional windows interface, and a newfangled "Metro" interface, which completely replaces the start menu from past windows. The problem with Metro is that it's designed primarily for a touchscreen, with a mouse and keyboard (aka the inputs that a vast majority of the people that use this OS will be using) being an afterthought. Touchscreen interfaces do not work well with a mouse, definitely not as well as the normal windows interface.

This, in itself, probably wouldn't be too bad, except that you're basically required to use the Metro interface. The programs on each interface are completely separate from one another, meaning that if a program is only on Metro, you have no choice but to use it. That, and the functions that were normally relegated to the start menu are now in Metro, making it impossible not to use it at all.

Microsoft is also apparently doing things to make Windows more of a closed system, although I'm not entirely sure what all of these things are.

EDIT: I also want to add that I am super psyched for Steam on Linux. The less that I need to use windows, the better.
That sucks! That is the reason I use a Mac and Linux, they are user friendly. Also I am less likely to get a virus.

OT: I am glad Steam is coming to Linux, looking forward to that for ages


Why are you talking about Mac and Linux like they are one and the same, they aren't, basic Linux is not user friendly, even real Linux users will admit that. We aren't stupid, stop trying to plug in your pro Mac bile, and actually contribute to the thread, you hardly have the right to call your self an elitist for using an inferior platform, not because of the user friendly-ness or the pretty colors, but because of the platforms unwarranted price. Oh and you know why Mac's don't get as many viruses? Its because barely any one uses them. And if that changed, it would be incredibly easy to exploit the system.
 

Waaghpowa

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Apr 13, 2010
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I was saying that Valve could help push for more Linux support when the rumours of Steam on linux first arose.

If anyone can push for Linux support, Valve could probably do it. Their platform is popular enough that developers could take notice.
 

teqrevisited

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I'd rather stick to my Win7 than learn to use Linux. Its user friendliness equates to thrusting your bare hands into a bag stuffed full of rabid otters. There will be blood and crying and in neither scenario will you end up with a fully functional computer.
 

Darknacht

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Greg Tito said:
He's committed to open platforms because he knows it's the best way for innovative software to grow
Does anyone else find this statement funny? If you like open platforms so much Gabe then why is Steam so closed?

OT: The problem with making Linux mainstream is that its a pain to use. To make it mainstream the computer illiterate have to be able to use it and I know people who can barely manage not to mess up their Windows and MAC installs on a monthly basis.
 

robert01

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Jul 22, 2011
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tomvw said:
robert01 said:
sudo apt-get install steam-daemon && sudo apt-get install no-games

That is what is going to happen, I think it is a nice effort, but Steam isn't going to help Linux become 'mainstream'. Until driver developers (looking at AMD/NVIDIA) actually start giving fuck about the stuff they release for Linux nothing will change.
The problem with AMD/NVIDIA is that their own drivers are supplied in compiled binary format (ie closed source) and the open-source variants are WAY behind in terms of features and performance. It's really odd, considering NVIDIA contributes heavily to Android, since they make Tegra-chips for smartphones and tablets (granted that's ARM instead of x86, but still).

Anyway, Linus Torvalds puts it best:
http://www.theverge.com/2012/6/17/3092829/linus-torvalds-fuck-you-nvidia

As for Steam for Linux, it might help a bit, but I don't see it taking of unless someone implements DirectX on Linux. Almost all of the big name titles (id Software's games being the exception) use DirectX as API, and porting to OpenGL is easier said than done.
Either way, I'm at least intrigued to see what Valve are able to pull of. But until then I'll stick with my Windows machine.
I'm not one of those "hurr freedom" drones that seem to plague the Linux user base these days. I understand why a company would NOT want to release the source to their hardware, I get it. And that is the case with Linux, ok. BUt why are the drivers so fucking shitty, do people using the hardware in an Apple machine have the same problems? Didn't think so, isn't OSX *nix based? Sure is. They developers just don't want to support the platform so they release the bare bones and say there.

As for Direct X in Linux, good luck with the at, we all know who owns that, and I don't see it being on anything non-Microsoft ever.

Darknacht said:
Greg Tito said:
He's committed to open platforms because he knows it's the best way for innovative software to grow
Does anyone else find this statement funny? If you like open platforms so much Gabe then why is Steam so closed?

OT: The problem with making Linux mainstream is that its a pain to use. To make it mainstream the computer illiterate have to be able to use it and I know people who can barely manage not to mess up their Windows and MAC installs on a monthly basis.
Steam is closed because it is a service. I find it funny when people climb all over it for not being open. Even the 'great Stallman lord and leader of the freedom drones' says that services do not need to be open source, and that is what Steam is a service. Expecting a platform where money changes hands for a product to be open source is asking for disaster anyways and the concept itself is silly.

Sleekit said:
there are consumer friendly versions of linux. its not like the average gamer wants a lot out an OS; literally my brother's only concerns are that his games work when he clicks on their icons, he can run firefox and use a decent media player. point being gamers who game spend most of their time inside the games (with using the internet being the other biggy).

if Valve pulls together good driver support there will be "lightweight" user friendly custom distros made up as de facto front ends for gaming. (maybe even a Steam themed one from Valve itself :eek:...and if they don't do that someone else will :p )

and once that happens and its seen a solid supported platform others may well jump onboard (maybe GOG ? :eek: )
There are no consumer friendly version of Linux. There are those that pretend to be (Ubuntu and its various forks), but at the end of the day they still have the same problem has every other Linux distro, it isn't Windows/OSX. A lot of the features that people take for granted on those operating systems, you don't get with Linux, and you probably never will. Hell even getting a decent office program is impossible because non exist. You are stuck with this Java based shit.
 

robert01

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Jul 22, 2011
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ravenshrike said:
robert01 said:
sudo apt-get install steam-daemon && sudo apt-get install no-games

That is what is going to happen, I think it is a nice effort, but Steam isn't going to help Linux become 'mainstream'. Until driver developers (looking at AMD/NVIDIA) actually start giving fuck about the stuff they release for Linux nothing will change.
Which Valve smacking them with a gaming consumer base will probably do. At that point they will have hard numbers and might actually become interested in maintaining a product.
Here is the thing, the ONLY thing that this really does is it moves the Source engine over to Linux as well, which Valve is going to do, which I think is a great thing. But a lot of the games that it will carry already have Linux version, a lot of Indie games already have this, and Desura has been available for Linux for quite some time. Expecting this to make a great impact on Linux is a foolish idea, it won't happen. Even if they do get momentum you have to deal with the fact that you are stuck using OpenGL based engines for your games, and this leaves out any games that are exclusive to DirectX (see most AAA titles) from ever reaching that platform.
 

Agayek

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Oct 23, 2008
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Elate said:
Eh, I'll just skip Windows 8 like I did Vista, then microsoft will pick up the ball if valve manages to make Linux viable and bring it back with Windows 9.
For one, it's a tablet OS that's been ported to PCs. It was designed with tablets in mind, and that means that a lot of the multi-processing stuff that is vital for desktop PCs are stunted. It's not terrible per se, but it's definitely not as good as a pure desktop OS.

On top of all that, there's the classic Windows curse, in that they release one good OS, then an utterly crappy one, then another good one, etc. Windows 7 is a damn good OS, so 8 is guaranteed to suck donkey balls.

Edit: GAH! The new forum layout confuses me. Totally quoted the wrong guy.
Evil Smurf said:
Sorry but what is wrong with windows 8? I mean I have a Mac which normally entitles me to "hipster elitism". But can anyone tell me why it will suck? does it crash heaps?, is it prone to viruses? is it too complicated? Do all the cool kids have Mac envy?
That's the one I meant.
 

Redlin5_v1legacy

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But... but... then I'll need another hipster OS to install on my netbook!

I'll have to worry about malware again... o.o

[sub]I'm looking forward to it seeing as some friends ONLY communicate via Steam these days... >.<[/sub]