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Updated: 3 hours 36 min ago

NVIDIA have released the 435.17 beta driver with Vulkan and OpenGL support for PRIME render offload

Tuesday 13th of August 2019 06:05:01 PM

Tags: Beta, Drivers, Hardware, NVIDIA

NVIDIA have a little present available for Linux fans today, with the release of the 435.17 beta driver now being available.

This is a beta driver and it includes quite the highlight with the addition of PRIME render offload support for Vulkan and OpenGL. This is where you might have your Intel GPU running most normal applications, with an NVIDIA chip then powering your games. It's usually found in Notebooks and it's been a source of annoyance for NVIDIA Notebook owners for a long time, so it's really pleasing to see proper progress like this.

It comes with some caveats though, as it needs a very up to date X.Org Server with git commits not available in a normal release yet. However, if you're on Ubuntu 19.04 or 18.04 NVIDIA have provided a PPA. There's a little additional work needed for now too, you can read more about the PRIME render offload support here.

For the rest of what's in this new driver, it has the usual assortment of bug fixes and "experimental support for runtime D3 (RTD3) power management on Turing notebook GPUs". The full changelog can be found here.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Impressive looking science fiction point and click game ENCODYA is now on Kickstarter

Tuesday 13th of August 2019 05:53:50 PM

Tags: Adventure, Crowdfunding, Indie Game, Point & Click

Encodya, the upcoming science fiction point and click with a free demo on itch.io, is now on Kickstarter. While the demo showed a rather ordinary day of orphan Tina and her Robot SAM-53, she'll be going on real adventures in the full game.

The beautiful game the author attributes to "the sweetness and creativity of Studio Ghibli, the setting and atmosphere of Blade Runner and the humor and game style of Monkey Island", is looking for at least 27,500€ (~$30,800) in funding. The first stretch goal is 32,500€ for three additional languages, namely Italian (the developer is Italian by origin), German (we are the home of adventure games, right?) and Spanish. The second stretch goal promises an additional hour of gameplay with extra puzzles, locations and characters if 45,000€ is reached. Additional stretch goals would be unlocked later.


Watch video on YouTube.com

The game has lots of Kickstarter tiers, starting with 5€ for "eternal gratitude" and an entry in a hopefully long list in the credits, going over 25€ for the game in digital form (20€ for the early nerds/birds), over various featurings in the game (phone book entry, neon sign, item name, poster, "walker" NPC, game character, robot), up to your own page in the game credits (if you happen to have 5,000€ ready for it). There will also be a physical box, but it will take you 200€ to get one.

The main author of the game, Nicola Piovesan, not only delivered on both previous Kickstarter projects but takes pride in having delivered them on time. He was dedicated to supporting Linux during the tests already and worked around the problems that arose. You can (and should!) check out his ability to deliver for Linux by downloading and playing the demo version of Encodya.

You can find the Kickstarter here.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Abbey Games have released the Will Of The People update for Godhood

Tuesday 13th of August 2019 02:31:32 PM

Tags: Early Access, Update, Strategy, Simulation, Indie Game, GOG, Steam

After entering Early Access in July, Godhood from Abbey Games has received a bit of a mixed impression from users but they're moving quickly to improve it.

I can understand where some of the negative reviews have currently come from, while a nice looking game and one I've enjoyed playing, it's currently pretty simple. To be expected from Early Access though, it's going to evolve over time. They've recently adjusted the way they describe it too, originally saying it was a "strategy god game" but they're now saying it's a "roster-management auto-battling god game"—okay then. Hoping to hook in some auto-battler fans I see!

The recently released Will Of The People update adds in some new features, here's the main highlights:

  • Worshipper Enthusiasm: Keep your flock happy!
  • Holy Tribute: Sanctify your resources!
  • Updated Faith Mechanics: Manage your fickle flock!
  • New Construction Mechanics: You choose what to build!
  • 8 new support buildings: Expand your Holy Site!
  • New final island: Challenge Quetzalcoatl!
  • Difficulty Settings: How do you like to play?

For a more in depth explanation of what's new, see their release notes.

Abbey Games did a livestream recently to show off the Will Of The People update which you can see below. The actual stream starts after around 13 minutes (the video should be set to start then):


Watch video on YouTube.com

Testing the brand new update myself from the GOG version, they have not yet solved the issue of it requiring the insecure SSLv3. I did report this to them, but since they only support Ubuntu and currently Ubuntu still works with it I doubt it will be fixed any time soon. It will be a problem for all distributions eventually, so hopefully sooner rather than later. Thankfully, replacing their bundled libcurl with another still works fine, just drop it into the game folder to replace the current one.

I have pretty mixed feelings about it right now, it's quite a relaxing game but there's just not a whole lot to do. You assign people to buildings, perhaps build something new if you have enough resources, send some off to battle on the map and watch as they do their thing and repeat a lot.

Since the latest update, when you get into a losing streak it feels too punishing to try and get out of it, it's going to need some balancing with the new happiness mechanics. There needs to be some more ways to power-up your fighters, along with more chances to have fights you can actually win when you're doing badly otherwise it becomes an exercise in frustration. Part of the issue is only being able to assign three people to activities, when you get more buildings and further in that becomes overly limiting. It might change further in the game (I've not seen it mentioned though) but it's not fun enough to put even more time into it right now to find out.

It's like a slow idle clicker currently with an auto-battler on the side. For a god game, I want there to be more ways to interact with my flock, it just needs a lot more to do. Some parts of it are a little tedious too, like managing what your people are doing, removing a person from a building just so someone else can perform a miracle at a different building because of the limits in place, it feels like needless clicking. I'm looking forward to seeing all the tweaks they make to improve the flow over time.

You can find Godhood on GOG and Steam.

Since it was another game funded on Kickstarter, it has been added to our dedicated Crowdfunding Page.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Duck in Town - A Rising Knight, a comedy adventure coming to Linux later this year

Tuesday 13th of August 2019 12:33:19 PM

Tags: Adventure, Indie Game, Upcoming, Steam, Itch.io, Godot Engine

Here's another game being created with the FOSS tool Godot Engine: Duck in Town - A Rising Knight, a comedy 3D graphic adventure.

Duck, Duckson's father, takes him to Town, capital of the Duck Kingdom and home of the Duck King. Duckson wants to become the greatest Duck Knight ever. To fullfill his dream, he must explore a peculiar town, full of mysteries and weird places, meet a bunch of quirky villagers and prove that he is worth the title.

Duck in Town - A Rising Knight is the first chapter in this series of comedy 3D graphic adventure games, heavily inspired by the classics of the genre.

It looks like it could be somewhat amusing and I can't help but think of The Duck Song for some reason…got any grapes? Anyway, take a look at the trailer Papaya Games put up recently:


Watch video on YouTube.com

On Twitter, the developer was asked about Linux support, to which they replied with:

100% guaranteed (the game is fully developed on Linux and made with the open-source Godot Engine!)

So not only is it made with a FOSS game engine, it's being made on Linux too. Always fun to find that out, hopefully more developers will start moving to this workflow as Godot Engine matures.

You can follow/wishlist on itch.io and Steam. Releasing sometime later this year.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

The Goldberg Steam Emulator has a new release, marking one year

Tuesday 13th of August 2019 11:46:56 AM

Tags: Steam, Open Source

The Goldberg Steam Emulator is an interesting project and one that could be important if Steam ever goes fully offline.

It's a replacement for the Steam API file, allowing you to play a Steam game that uses Steam's multiplayer APIs on a LAN without Steam or an internet connection. Sounds like it's a pretty handy project. Not just if Steam one day vanishes, as it could even help a developer publish outside of Steam, as the developer said:

If you are a game developer and made the mistake of depending too much on the steam api and want to release of version of your game without it and don't want to rewrite your game, this is for you. It is licenced LGPLv3+ so the only source code you need to publish is the source code of this emulator (and only if you make modification to it).

Yesterday, a new release became available with v0.2.5, here's the highlights:

  • Inventory support added.
  • Initial Steam Networking Sockets implementation (Fixes Hat in Time Multiplayer).
  • Updated to sdk 1.46.
  • More accurate auth behaviour.
  • Leaderboards are now configurable.
  • Various remote storage improvements (Fixed saving/loading in a few games).
  • A bunch of accuracy improvements and other fixes.

Additionally, that release marked one year since the original announcement (before it was open source). To go with the occasion, the developer put up a blog post. In the post, they go over some issues that have needed fixing for certain games, with some relying on odd behaviour that could easily break and an "overlay" might be coming soon.

You can see more on the GitLab.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

PS3 emulator RPCS3 can now play Demon's Souls at 60FPS thanks to a patch

Tuesday 13th of August 2019 11:33:59 AM

Tags: Emulation, Video

RPCS3 for emulating the PlayStation 3 continues advancing quickly! A new blog post is up showing off a patch that enables you to play Demon's Souls at 60FPS and 4K.

The patch simply changes the amount of time that’s advanced each frame from 33.3ms to 16.7ms. Since the patch is meant to be used with Vblank at 120 which doubles the max framerate, this lets us get a correct game speed at 60FPS. After that, it is then necessary to set Clocks scale to 200 to re-enable the games internal frameskipping at 60FPS, without which you will drop game speed every time your computer can’t hold 60FPS. I’ve also included another line that’s commented out by default (has the symbol # at the start of the line) which sets the timestep to 8.3 ms. This is meant to be used with Vblank at 240 and Clocks scale at 400 for proper gamespeed at 120FPS.

This is some seriously impressive stuff, amazing to see that RPCS3 can run so well. Have a look at their new video to show it off:


Watch video on YouTube.com

Want to get going? The steps needed are included below:

  1. First of all, you’ll need the EU or US disc version of Demon’s Souls. Only the disc versions will currently work.
  2. Next, you’ll need to right click on Demon’s Souls in the game list and click Configure.
    On the CPU tab, ensure that SPU block size is set to Safe (which is the default setting).
    On the GPU tab, ensure that Write color buffers is enabled and the Renderer is set to Vulkan.
    Once the above changes are made, hit Save and you’ll be back to the game list.
  3. Right click on Demon’s Souls again and click on “Open custom config folder” and open the corresponding config file. In This file you will need to set:
    Clocks scale: 200
    Vblank Rate: 120
    Log: {sceNp: Fatal}
    Please note that all the above options are case sensitive.
  4. Finally, download the patch here and place it in your RPCS3 folder. If you are on Linux, then place it in ~/.config/rpcs3/.

As always, emulation remains as a vital part of gaming's history. Not just so we don't lose access to tons of older games many years later when a developer moves on, but so we can play them often better than the developer was able to run them on the system it was originally designed for.

If you wish to support the development of RPCS3, they have a Patreon.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

The ambitious Anodyne 2: Return to Dust is out with Linux support, some thoughts

Tuesday 13th of August 2019 11:07:07 AM

Tags: Humble Store, GOG, Itch.io, Steam, New Release, Indie Game, Adventure, RPG, Exploration, Review

Combining elements from both 3D and 2D games, Anodyne 2: Return to Dust has officially released with Linux support.

A very ambitious game, using a 3D art style inspired by the PS1, PS2, and N64 era of gaming and 2D sections much like you would have seen on the GBA and SNES. Developed by Analgesic Productions (Even the Ocean, All Our Asias, Anodyne), it's incredibly impressive when you realise this was made by two people.


Watch video on YouTube.com

I honestly don't think I've played anything like Anodyne 2, an extremely surreal experience. It really did feel like I was back in my youth, playing some sort of RPG on the PlayStation and it really does look the part. We get a lot of games that go retro but nothing quite like how this is done.

You are Nova, hatched from an Egg and dumped right into a warzone. This is a slightly unusual warzone though, there's no swords or guns involved and no great armies clashing. Your foe? Nano Dust. A microscopic force that infests the minds and bodies of people across New Theland. It will feed on fears, wrath and more eventually destroying the identity of whoever is hosting this Nano Dust.

This is where the rather excellent use of mixing 3D and 2D gameplay comes in, as you're able to shrink down into the bodies of others. It's bizarre but brilliant at the same time. To do so, you must shoot someone with your spark to open them up to your shrinking ability and then perform a little rhythm mini-game to actually get inside.

Once you manage to beat the little game, you then jump on inside whatever weird creature it is you've come across in need of a good inner scrub. There is where the 2D side of the game appears, which has you run around using a vacuum to clear out all the Nano Dust in a sort-of Zelda-like little dungeon with some combat and puzzles.

Some of these dungeons are downright hilariously weird, like one where you use your vacuum to pull out a tongue to hit Dust enemies with. At one point I accidentally pulled the tongue out and hit one of the little helpers inside this particular body and it…well I think it got a little aroused. Each dungeon is a little unique too and certainly never dull.

Once you have enough Nano Dust, you can deposit it all at the Dust Prism below Cenote, the big city in the centre of New Theland. This Dust Prism then recycles it into energy, which is used to push back the storm of Dust trying to cover and destroy everything in sight.

When you manage to defeat the boss of each of these inner body dungeons, you can suck up some big floating Dust spire-like thing to get a card. You can then use these cards when you have enough, to expand the storage of the Dust Prism to further the story.

Basically, in Anodyne 2 you're a shrinking Janitor cleaning out people's dusty innards. It's actually a little hilarious when I thought about it in such simple terms, yet so beautifully done.

Feature Highlight:

  • In 3D, jump, drive, and walk across gorgeous and haunting locales, speaking with strange and memorable characters.
  • In 2D, use your Nano Vacuum to collect dust, suck up and fight enemies, all while overcoming mind-bending challenges related to the characters’ inner lives.
  • Experience the thrilling and emotional story of Nova. Her destiny is clear: she is the Nano Cleaner who will save New Theland. But strange characters & painful experiences will put her loyalty to the test...
  • Choose where you want to go! The sweeping vistas of New Theland quickly open up to exploration.
  • The Cards you find on your journey will allow you to access the outer reaches of New Theland.
  • No waiting for horses! Instantly transform into a car to quickly drive around the world.
  • Use your Spark to shrink into the bodies of the infected, explore the 2D Zelda-like dungeons within, and heal them.
  • Enjoy the lush, dreamy and breathtaking 3D and 2D landscapes painted and pixeled by artist Marina Kittaka.
  • Listen to over 50 new songs influenced by countless genres by Sean Han Tani, perfectly fitting the varied landscapes of Anodyne 2.

As a reminder, the story is completely standalone, you do not need to have played the first game to enjoy this. They can be played in any order. Anodyne 2 has some references that fans of the original may notice, but not much else to worry about and certainly didn't stop my absolute enjoyment of it considering I had not played the original game.

For the Linux version, they're supporting "Ubuntu/Steam OS" so keep that in mind. However, I can confirm that it does at least work without issues on an up to date install of Manjaro.

Do I recommend it? Personally, I think it's absolutely fantastic.

You can find it on Humble Store, GOG, itch.io and Steam. All stores have it currently with 10% off.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

G2A have extended the deadline for their proposed key-blocking tool, as more developers are unhappy with them

Tuesday 13th of August 2019 08:25:38 AM

Tags: Misc, Editorial

Recently, after G2A appeared in the spotlight once again for being terrible, they offered to make a key-blocking tool for developers. This was offered after our recent article highlighting a bunch of problems, an article that's worth a read as a little background on what's going on.

According to G2A, such a key-blocking tool would be "time-consuming and expensive", which is completely ridiculous because it's a pretty damn simple feature to make, with it comparing lists of keys against what users try to sell. Not just that, they also required at least 100 developers to sign up to it before they would do it which is also outrageous. They even gave a deadline of August 15th for developers to sign up.

That deadline has now been extended until the end of August as only 19 developers signed up, how generous of them.

Wube Software, developer of Factorio, actually took up G2A on their offer of paying developers back "10x the money proven to be lost on chargebacks", as noted by Wube in one of their blog posts. That was posted on July 12th, noting that they last heard from G2A a few days before posting and G2A had their list of keys. As an update on that, it seems they're still waiting. Surprised? Nope.

Another developer is also now showing how unhappy they are with it, after gamesindustry.biz posted an article about the deadline extension, Charlie Cleveland the Game Director/Founder at Unknown Worlds (Subnautica, Natural Selection 2) posted an interesting comment and shared it on Twitter:

It's a load of crap that this tool would be "expensive" to develop. It's also suspect how they are pushing the names of developers who don't want their games to be sold on their service - it's almost like they want blowback from players who don't understand the shadiness of their service and be encouraged to review bomb those developers. It's also terrible to put the impetus on developers to have to take action with G2A to get this proposal moving in the first place, while G2A profits off gray-market sales and credit card fraud.

We paid $30,000 to deal with credit card chargebacks because of G2A […] So, G2A, if you really want to put your money where your mouth is, you will now pay us (Unknown Worlds) $300,000.

Note: Unknown Worlds wrote about the issue they were dealing with, back in 2013 for Natural Selection 2.

G2A did try to pay journalists to write an "unbiased" article about them while not mentioning in any way that it was sponsored, so what can we expect here? I fully expect G2A to end up doing nothing about it and carry on profiting from stolen keys.

Hat tip to dpanter.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Putting a Linux game on Steam: Missing Executable - a common pitfall for game devs

Tuesday 13th of August 2019 07:49:02 AM

Tags: Steam, Misc, Game Dev

Since this comes up so often when testing games for developers and surprisingly often for newly released Linux games, I thought it might help to give developers a quick hint.

The Issue

You've deployed your shiny new game onto Steam, later you've added a Linux version and it works fine for you. However, users are reporting a "Missing Executable" error that might look something like this:

The Cause

It's usually very simple, it's a case of the Linux version not being correctly setup on Steam and it's something only the developer can fix.

A super easy way to check, is to look at the game on the handy SteamDB website, comparing the Linux and Windows lists from the Depots link you will find on the left hand side.

Here's an example - Take a look at this content depot taken from SteamDB for a Linux game (thanks to the developer of Rings of Saturn for allowing me to show their game as the example - they've fixed it since):

Now, compare that to the Windows version which clearly shows it having Store purchases and another additional package which the Linux version above did not:

The issue there, should be obvious. The Linux version needs setting up in the same way as the Windows version, being linked to all packages of keys and the Steam store purchase, otherwise we get the issue.

Note: I can't show the actual Steam developer area where you do it, since I am not a Steam developer and all that stuff Valve usually keep confidential. Valve have been emailed to confirm if we can show this.

However, in this video on the Steamworks Development YouTube channel, if you look at about 3:04 it shows the Configuring Depots section, that should be what you're after. Make sure the operating system dropdown box is set to the correct systems. Additionally, you can find this Steamworks Documentation page that explains some of it.

I see this multiple times per week, so hopefully this little tip will help a few developers.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Total War: Shogun 2 - Fall of the Samurai is now a Total War Saga game, DLC free for existing owners

Monday 12th of August 2019 07:11:35 PM

Tags: Feral Interactive, Strategy, Update

Creative Assembly did a bit of a rebranding today, as Total War: Shogun 2 - Fall of the Samurai which was a standalone expansion for Total War: Shogun 2 has now become Total War Saga: FALL OF THE SAMURAI. Originally released in 2012, we were given a Linux port from Feral Interactive back in 2017.

Writing about the news on the official Total War blog post, Creative Assembly mentioned that along with the title adjustment that existing owners will get every DLC (excluding the blood pack) as a free gift which is pretty darn nice of them.

So why the changing name? Well, according to Creative Assembly, Fall of the Samsurai "has been used as a goalpost to inform the development of subsequent Saga titles, and so it only seems right to give the game its own Saga treatment."—okay then.

To celebrate, they've put it on a 75% discount on Steam. Otherwise it's also on Humble Store and Feral Store.

In other related Total War news, looks like another one is on the way named Total War Saga: Troy, as noted in a recent trademark filed in July. Will be interesting to see if Feral Interactive will be working on a port again.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

The 2D racer Bloody Rally Show is coming along nicely and it's good fun already

Monday 12th of August 2019 06:45:23 PM

Tags: Indie Game, Unity, Racing, Upcoming, Steam, Beta

Bloody Rally Show is an upcoming indie 2D racer from Game Hero Interactive, releasing either late this year or early next year it's currently in Beta and it's running well on Linux.

It's a game I briefly covered back in late March, I've not really followed it too closely until now. Recently though, the developer confirmed on Steam they will "never" release on the Epic Store, as well as the game being DRM-free on Steam as the Steam integration is going to be completely optional so you can copy it away from Steam and it will work fine.


Watch video on YouTube.com

Speaking to the developer today, they fully confirmed Linux support to me and mentioned that "Linux gets same treatment as Windows and OSX" as it's always kept up to date. Now that's how it should be done!

Feature Highlight:

  • Satisfying arcade-style car physics (handling, drifting, speed)
  • Infinite amount of randomly generated Race Tracks
  • Campaign mode, with both single player and local co-op
  • Possibility to share your custom built cars and tracks on Steam Workshop for others to enjoy
  • Racer XP and level-up
  • Campaign mode with missions and AI storyteller
  • Car tuning and upgrades
  • Custom paint jobs and racer avatars
  • Split Screen Local multiplayer for up to 4 players
  • Configuration setting to turn off blood (for family friendly split screen racing sessions)
  • Races with 100 opponents!
  • Ramps and jumps
  • High quality OST with dozen of full-length tunes

Game Hero Interactive also provided me with Beta access and I can confirm it's running nicely (at least on my main PC with Manjaro). So far, I haven't encountered a single issue with it and performance is good.

Shot taken from the Beta on Linux.

Surprisingly, using the Steam Controller with the Beta, it even has some force feedback which I've rarely seen actually work like this so that's sweet too. The developer told me it should work with any controller, even a steering wheel. I decided to give that a shot too and sure enough, the game detected my Logitech G29 and Pedals correctly. Quite amusing using a wheel for such a top-down racer, really good fun. No force feedback with my G29 but I didn't expect it to work at all.

If you usually like a good top-down racer, this needs to be on your watch list.

You can wishlist/follow it on Steam.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Towertale, the fast-paced 2D boss battler now has a Linux version available

Monday 12th of August 2019 06:08:05 PM

Tags: Action, Indie Game, New Release, Steam

With fast-paced 2D action, Towertale from MiSou Games arrives on Linux and not long after the original Windows version. If you're wondering what a "boss battler" actually is, all the fights are against big beasts instead of you having to easily make your way through tons of low-level sword fodder.

Towertale tells the story of a mysterious tower, created to by some sort of ancient being. If you manage to defeat the guardian on each level, you will be granted "the ultimate wish" or so the legend says anyway. Many have tried, just as many died.


The developer did send over a key and it seems to work very nicely. Picked up my Steam Controller without any issues and everything was smooth. The writing is a little…odd and nothing memorable but the action is actually pretty fun. On their recommended difficulty, I had my butt handed to me quite an embaressing number of times.

Feature Highlight:

  • 4 Playable Characters, many different ways to play.
  • 17 Fightable bosses designed with multiple phases.
  • 12 beautifully-crafted levels.
  • 25+ CGs that are used for the storyline.
  • 34+ Music tracks from bosses, characters and story themes.
  • Over 120+ story in game cutscenes.
  • Multiple story endings.
  • Arcade Mode for those who want to play the tower but not the tale!
  • Boss rush mode with leaderboards.
  • Freemode that enables you to fight the bosses at your own pace and difficulty.
  • Steam Achievements.
  • Full controller support + rebindable controls.

Overall, it succeeds at being exactly as it describes. A good button-mashing experience for you to take down some powerful foes. Not that simply mashing buttons will get you anywhere though, each character does have a set list of moves you need to learn as do the enemies. With a little patience, you can learn their moves but it's still a good enough challenge to be an enjoyable 2D boss fighter.

Find Towertale on Steam.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Eliza, the new Visual Novel from Zachtronics is out now with Linux support

Monday 12th of August 2019 05:33:24 PM

Tags: Indie Game, Visual Novel, Itch.io, Steam, New Release, GOG, Humble Store

Usually known for their excellent puzzle games, Zachtronics have released Eliza, a new and intriguing sounding Visual Novel.

Eliza is a visual novel about an AI counseling program, the people who develop it, and the people who use it. Follow Evelyn Ishino-Aubrey as she reconnects with people from her past, gets to know the people of Seattle who use Eliza for counseling, and decides the course of her future.


Watch video on YouTube.com

Feature Highlight:

  • A thought-provoking story told in the form of a visual novel from an award-winning indie team.
  • Follow Evelyn’s journey through a present-day Seattle brought to life with beautiful hand-painted art.
  • Get to know Eliza’s clients and the employees of Skandha, the technology giant behind it, with over a dozen fully-voiced characters and powerful performances from a highly regarded cast.
  • An evocative, ambient original score by the composer for Infinifactory, SHENZHEN I/O, Opus Magnum, and EXAPUNKS.
  • Is AI-driven counseling better than nothing? Is it worse than nothing? What responsibilities come with technical skills? Consider your own answers to these questions and more.
  • Counseling sessions getting a little too real? Relax with Kabufuda Solitaire, a new take on solitaire using Japanese kabufuda cards.

No Early Access stuff here, this is a complete game ready for you to dive right into. Not something I'm usually into either, but considering it's fully voiced and it's from a developer whose previous games I enjoyed (Opus Magnum in particular is fantastic) I think I might have to take a look.

GOG have provided me with a copy, so I shall be taking a look in future. Visual Novels aren't my usual preference but the idea here sounds too interesting to pass on.

Find it on GOG, Humble Store, itch.io or Steam.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Goonies-inspired adventure Knights And Bikes releasing with Linux support on August 27th

Monday 12th of August 2019 04:59:16 PM

Tags: Action, Adventure, Steam, Upcoming, GOG

Developed by Foam Sword and publisher Double Fine Presents, the hand-painted action-adventure Knights And Bikes is releasing soon. Confirmed on Twitter by both the developer and publisher, the August 27th release will indeed come with Linux support on the same day.

Featuring gameplay for 1-2 players, it takes place in the 1980s on a fictional British island called Penfurzy. You'll be exploring on your customizable bikes while dealing with puzzles and enemies using improvised tools like frisbees, water-balloons, puddle-stomping welly boots, and a powerful boom-box stereo. Sounds like it could be pretty sweet!


Another we've been waiting on for some time, after having a successful Kickstarter campaign back in 2016 where Foam Sword managed to get over £126K in funding. Not one I've followed too closely, but it's good to see a release approaching. It was also missed from our dedicated Crowdfunding Page, so it has been added.

You can wishlist/follow Knights And Bikes on GOG and Steam.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Hard sci-fi space sim Rings of Saturn has entered Early Access on Steam

Monday 12th of August 2019 04:39:57 PM

Tags: Early Access, Indie Game, Godot Engine, Simulation, New Release

After launching on itch.io with a hybrid Early Access/Crowdfunding model, the hard sci-fi space sim Rings of Saturn (full name—ΔV: Rings of Saturn) is now available with Linux support on Steam in Early Access.

The year is 2273

The unexpected discovery of valuable minerals within the rings of Saturn has sparked a thriving space excavation industry. You control an asteroid excavation ship hoping to make it rich out on the rings, but soon you find out that all is not as it appears. Experience a hard sci-fi story backed up with real physics and science.

The level of detail going into the game is really quite impressive. I've been following the developer on Twitter, fascinated by the lengths they're going through to try and be accurate. Like this post for example, comparing in-game exhaust plumes with a real VASIMR (Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket) test.


Watch video on YouTube.com

Key Features:

  • Realistic top-down hard sci-fi space flight experience. Every aspect of gameplay is backed up by real science. Ships fly just as starships should.
  • Jump into action in seconds with autopilot assist or save fuel by manual thruster maneuvers.
  • Detailed ship simulation down to every subsystem - upgrade your ship, fix or even jury-rig broken systems on the fly. Every system failure will impact gameplay - adapt to survive in the hostile environment of space.
  • Discover the mystery of the Rings, or just try to get rich leading your excavation company.
  • Plan your strategy back on Enceladus Prime station. Sell your output, upgrade your ship, hire the crew and manage your company.

Even with the itch.io store being very niche, the developer still managed to pull in around $1.5K. Hopefully with it now on Steam, additional funding will come in enabling the developer to spend more time bringing the game to completion. It's also great that Kodera Software feel that Linux has been worth it for them!

So now you can grab it on either itch.io or Steam.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Valve confirmed developers now need to contact them to change their release date

Monday 12th of August 2019 04:12:58 PM

Tags: Valve, Steam

As an update to an article we posted recently about Valve seeming to need confirmation of release date changes on Steam, Valve have now confirmed this.

If you're not keeping up and to save you a quick click: Some developers were constantly changing their release date, even if they had no intention of releasing on that new date. It affected pages like the upcoming releases list and made their games always show up near the top.

Now, in a blog post on the Steamworks Development group, the Valve developer confirmed the recent change was made to address "developers that intentionally or unintentionally changed their release dates multiple times". This should hopefully make it less annoying for both players and developers, as it had been a problem for quite some time.

Additionally, Valve will now be sending email reminders to all developers when it's coming up to two weeks before their currently set date. Previously, Valve were only sending this out to a small set of games "as a test" but now every developer will get it.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Underworld Ascendant for Linux still coming, should be this month

Monday 12th of August 2019 03:54:00 PM

Tags: Dungeon Crawler, Action, RPG, Upcoming, Humble Store, Steam

While the Underworld Ascendant team didn't manage to hit their previous release estimates for the Linux version, it looks like it's finally there.

In the latest weekly update to address the state of all things, one of the team said this:

PC/Mac/Linux:
Still aiming to release these all at once either later this week OR early next week. We addressed as many Mac and Linux bugs as we could as a result of our playtest sessions; thank you to those of you who volunteered your time to help us with this. The only blocker now is that the PC build still needs to have some fixes verified by QA, such as the thrown item bug which previously disabled items such as the Jewel of Befuddlement from being activated when thrown.

Considering it was funded on Kickstarter back in 2015, with a Steam release for Windows back in 2018 we've been left waiting on this for quote some time now. Thankfully, they did pull in a porting studio to handle it, so the end result should be a Linux version that's tested working well—hopefully anyway.

Available on Humble Store and Steam.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

The absolutely insane hardcore platformer Electronic Super Joy 2 is out for free

Friday 9th of August 2019 07:03:59 PM

Tags: Indie Game, Platformer, Steam, Itch.io, New Release, Free Game

Almost six years after the original, Michael Todd Games returns to inflict more painful hardcore platforming with slick beats in Electronic Super Joy 2 which is out now. Technically the third game, since Electronic Super Joy: Groove City was also released back in 2014.

It's…difficult, maddeningly so in some areas. This is a game designed to make you furious, yet it's so damn good at the same time. I will fully admit to being absolutely atrocious at it, hardcore platformers aren't usually something that I go for but Electronic Super Joy 2 has the right amount of weird for me to enjoy it.


Watch video on YouTube.com

Another reason it's good is the absolutely fantastic soundtrack, seriously it's awesome. Exactly the kind of thumping music to really get your blood pumping and your fingers mashing those buttons. You need that music too, I couldn't imagine just how aggravating it would be without it. Seriously, this was designed by someone who wants to inflict pain on you. I'm pretty sure while playing it, I startled everyone in my street a few times shouting at it.

I'm definitely not a fan of the "oooh…yeah!" moaning going on whenever you take a checkpoint or spawn back at one. You can adjust it, to have a less graphic "ah yeah!" but that's even more annoying. Look, sometimes I fell off the same platform like a hundred times, it really irritated me. I wish I could turn it off.

Reading back, it might sound now like I'm not a fan, to be very clear I am. As far as hardcore platformers go, it's good. Some of it feels downright bloody unfair though, with projectiles firing away at you, while you're trying to jump across single blocks with an enemy at the end you need to then jump above and stomp—absolutely madness. Some of the checkpoints need tweaking too, there's a few where you get maybe 1 second to react before you're hit with something.

Feature Highlight:

  • Play through 55+ pulse-pounding levels!
  • Groove to 38 tracks of amazing music!
  • Load your shotgun & fight through a DOOM-style FPS!
  • Twist your way across the World Map, with 55+ levels, plus side challenges, secret levels, alternative pathways & collectibles.
  • 8+ hours of gameplay!
  • 4 HUGE Boss fights!
  • Far too many dad jokes & bad puns!

A surprise is that it's actually free, with a DLC to get some extras you can buy to support the developer. Included in the Gold Edition are 3 bonus levels, a new ability, a new boss fight, new in-game music, the full 43 track OST, HD digital posters, in-development shots and behind the scenes stuff.

Run and jump on over to itch.io or Steam if you fancy trying it out.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

The absolutely insane hardcore platformer Electronic Super Joy 2 is out

Friday 9th of August 2019 07:03:59 PM

Tags: Indie Game, Platformer, Steam, Itch.io, New Release, Free Game

Almost six years after the original, Michael Todd Games returns to inflict more painful hardcore platforming with slick beats in Electronic Super Joy 2 which is out now. Technically the third game, since Electronic Super Joy: Groove City was also released back in 2014.

It's…difficult, maddeningly so in some areas. This is a game designed to make you furious, yet it's so damn good at the same time. I will fully admit to being absolutely atrocious at it, hardcore platformers aren't usually something that I go for but Electronic Super Joy 2 has the right amount of weird for me to enjoy it.


Watch video on YouTube.com

Another reason it's good is the absolutely fantastic soundtrack, seriously it's awesome. Exactly the kind of thumping music to really get your blood pumping and your fingers mashing those buttons. You need that music too, I couldn't imagine just how aggravating it would be without it. Seriously, this was designed by someone who wants to inflict pain on you. I'm pretty sure while playing it, I startled everyone in my street a few times shouting at it.

I'm definitely not a fan of the "oooh…yeah!" moaning going on whenever you take a checkpoint or spawn back at one. You can adjust it, to have a less graphic "ah yeah!" but that's even more annoying. Look, sometimes I fell off the same platform like a hundred times, it really irritated me. I wish I could turn it off.

Reading back, it might sound now like I'm not a fan, to be very clear I am. As far as hardcore platformers go, it's good. Some of it feels downright bloody unfair though, with projectiles firing away at you, while you're trying to jump across single blocks with an enemy at the end you need to then jump above and stomp—absolutely madness. Some of the checkpoints need tweaking too, there's a few where you get maybe 1 second to react before you're hit with something.

Feature Highlight:

  • Play through 55+ pulse-pounding levels!
  • Groove to 38 tracks of amazing music!
  • Load your shotgun & fight through a DOOM-style FPS!
  • Twist your way across the World Map, with 55+ levels, plus side challenges, secret levels, alternative pathways & collectibles.
  • 8+ hours of gameplay!
  • 4 HUGE Boss fights!
  • Far too many dad jokes & bad puns!

A surprise is that it's actually free, with a DLC to get some extras you can buy to support the developer. Included in the Gold Edition are 3 bonus levels, a new ability, a new boss fight, new in-game music, the full 43 track OST, HD digital posters, in-development shots and behind the scenes stuff.

Run and jump on over to itch.io or Steam if you fancy trying it out.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

Facepunch Studios confirm their plan for the Linux version of Rust, to be split from Windows & Mac

Friday 9th of August 2019 05:46:04 PM

Tags: Survival, Steam, Misc, Indie Game

Garry Newman from Facepunch Studios has put out a new blog post detailing their final plans for the Linux version of the survival game Rust.

It's quite an open and honest post about the state of things, noting that they didn't really do a good job of actually supporting the Linux version. The post mentions how they never routinely tested it, unless they knew something was wrong. Newman also mentions how the "quiet majority" of Linux gamers accept that they're often a second-class citizen but we shouldn't be as we are paying the same. Which is why they made the decision to stop supporting Linux originally in July last year.

Their plan for the Linux version going forward is to split it away from Windows and Mac, along with getting no new features but it will see "maintenance patches". So Linux owners can still play it and play online together, but not with Windows and Mac players.

Facepunch will also not work on any future Linux games, as they "can't/won't properly support it".

A shame this happened, but nice to finally draw a line under it and know exactly what's happening.

If you are after a survival game that's supported on Linux, I can recommend 7 Days to Die which is really good fun [Humble Store - Steam]. Our livestreamer, Sin, regularly shows it off on our Twitch Channel.

Article from GamingOnLinux.com

More in Tux Machines

LWN: Spectre, Linux and Debian Development

  • Grand Schemozzle: Spectre continues to haunt

    The Spectre v1 hardware vulnerability is often characterized as allowing array bounds checks to be bypassed via speculative execution. While that is true, it is not the full extent of the shenanigans allowed by this particular class of vulnerabilities. For a demonstration of that fact, one need look no further than the "SWAPGS vulnerability" known as CVE-2019-1125 to the wider world or as "Grand Schemozzle" to the select group of developers who addressed it in the Linux kernel. Segments are mostly an architectural relic from the earliest days of x86; to a great extent, they did not survive into the 64-bit era. That said, a few segments still exist for specific tasks; these include FS and GS. The most common use for GS in current Linux systems is for thread-local or CPU-local storage; in the kernel, the GS segment points into the per-CPU data area. User space is allowed to make its own use of GS; the arch_prctl() system call can be used to change its value. As one might expect, the kernel needs to take care to use its own GS pointer rather than something that user space came up with. The x86 architecture obligingly provides an instruction, SWAPGS, to make that relatively easy. On entry into the kernel, a SWAPGS instruction will exchange the current GS segment pointer with a known value (which is kept in a model-specific register); executing SWAPGS again before returning to user space will restore the user-space value. Some carefully placed SWAPGS instructions will thus prevent the kernel from ever running with anything other than its own GS pointer. Or so one would think.

  • Long-term get_user_pages() and truncate(): solved at last?

    Technologies like RDMA benefit from the ability to map file-backed pages into memory. This benefit extends to persistent-memory devices, where the backing store for the file can be mapped directly without the need to go through the kernel's page cache. There is a fundamental conflict, though, between mapping a file's backing store directly and letting the filesystem code modify that file's on-disk layout, especially when the mapping is held in place for a long time (as RDMA is wont to do). The problem seems intractable, but there may yet be a solution in the form of this patch set (marked "V1,000,002") from Ira Weiny. The problems raised by the intersection of mapping a file (via get_user_pages()), persistent memory, and layout changes by the filesystem were the topic of a contentious session at the 2019 Linux Storage, Filesystem, and Memory-Management Summit. The core question can be reduced to this: what should happen if one process calls truncate() while another has an active get_user_pages() mapping that pins some or all of that file's pages? If the filesystem actually truncates the file while leaving the pages mapped, data corruption will certainly ensue. The options discussed in the session were to either fail the truncate() call or to revoke the mapping, causing the process that mapped the pages to receive a SIGBUS signal if it tries to access them afterward. There were passionate proponents for both options, and no conclusion was reached. Weiny's new patch set resolves the question by causing an operation like truncate() to fail if long-term mappings exist on the file in question. But it also requires user space to jump through some hoops before such mappings can be created in the first place. This approach comes from the conclusion that, in the real world, there is no rational use case where somebody might want to truncate a file that has been pinned into place for use with RDMA, so there is no reason to make that operation work. There is ample reason, though, for preventing filesystem corruption and for informing an application that gets into such a situation that it has done something wrong.

  • Hardening the "file" utility for Debian

    In addition, he had already encountered problems with file running in environments with non-standard libraries that were loaded using the LD_PRELOAD environment variable. Those libraries can (and do) make system calls that the regular file binary does not make; the system calls were disallowed by the seccomp() filter. Building a Debian package often uses FakeRoot (or fakeroot) to run commands in a way that appears that they have root privileges for filesystem operations—without actually granting any extra privileges. That is done so that tarballs and the like can be created containing files with owners other than the user ID running the Debian packaging tools, for example. Fakeroot maintains a mapping of the "changes" made to owners, groups, and permissions for files so that it can report those to other tools that access them. It does so by interposing a library ahead of the GNU C library (glibc) to intercept file operations. In order to do its job, fakeroot spawns a daemon (faked) that is used to maintain the state of the changes that programs make inside of the fakeroot. The libfakeroot library that is loaded with LD_PRELOAD will then communicate to the daemon via either System V (sysv) interprocess communication (IPC) calls or by using TCP/IP. Biedl referred to a bug report in his message, where Helmut Grohne had reported a problem with running file inside a fakeroot.

Flameshot is a brilliant screenshot tool for Linux

The default screenshot tool in Ubuntu is alright for basic snips but if you want a really good one you need to install a third-party screenshot app. Shutter is probably my favorite, but I decided to give Flameshot a try. Packages are available for various distributions including Ubuntu, Arch, openSuse and Debian. You find installation instructions on the official project website. Read more

Android Leftovers

IBM/Red Hat and Intel Leftovers

  • Troubleshooting Red Hat OpenShift applications with throwaway containers

    Imagine this scenario: Your cool microservice works fine from your local machine but fails when deployed into your Red Hat OpenShift cluster. You cannot see anything wrong with the code or anything wrong in your services, configuration maps, secrets, and other resources. But, you know something is not right. How do you look at things from the same perspective as your containerized application? How do you compare the runtime environment from your local application with the one from your container? If you performed your due diligence, you wrote unit tests. There are no hard-coded configurations or hidden assumptions about the runtime environment. The cause should be related to the configuration your application receives inside OpenShift. Is it time to run your app under a step-by-step debugger or add tons of logging statements to your code? We’ll show how two features of the OpenShift command-line client can help: the oc run and oc debug commands.

  • What piece of advice had the greatest impact on your career?

    I love learning the what, why, and how of new open source projects, especially when they gain popularity in the DevOps space. Classification as a "DevOps technology" tends to mean scalable, collaborative systems that go across a broad range of challenges—from message bus to monitoring and back again. There is always something new to explore, install, spin up, and explore.

  • How DevOps is like auto racing

    When I talk about desired outcomes or answer a question about where to get started with any part of a DevOps initiative, I like to mention NASCAR or Formula 1 racing. Crew chiefs for these race teams have a goal: finish in the best place possible with the resources available while overcoming the adversity thrown at you. If the team feels capable, the goal gets moved up a series of levels to holding a trophy at the end of the race. To achieve their goals, race teams don’t think from start to finish; they flip the table to look at the race from the end goal to the beginning. They set a goal, a stretch goal, and then work backward from that goal to determine how to get there. Work is delegated to team members to push toward the objectives that will get the team to the desired outcome. [...] Race teams practice pit stops all week before the race. They do weight training and cardio programs to stay physically ready for the grueling conditions of race day. They are continually collaborating to address any issue that comes up. Software teams should also practice software releases often. If safety systems are in place and practice runs have been going well, they can release to production more frequently. Speed makes things safer in this mindset. It’s not about doing the “right” thing; it’s about addressing as many blockers to the desired outcome (goal) as possible and then collaborating and adjusting based on the real-time feedback that’s observed. Expecting anomalies and working to improve quality and minimize the impact of those anomalies is the expectation of everyone in a DevOps world.

  • Deep Learning Reference Stack v4.0 Now Available

    Artificial Intelligence (AI) continues to represent one of the biggest transformations underway, promising to impact everything from the devices we use to cloud technologies, and reshape infrastructure, even entire industries. Intel is committed to advancing the Deep Learning (DL) workloads that power AI by accelerating enterprise and ecosystem development. From our extensive work developing AI solutions, Intel understands how complex it is to create and deploy applications for deep learning workloads. That?s why we developed an integrated Deep Learning Reference Stack, optimized for Intel Xeon Scalable processor and released the companion Data Analytics Reference Stack. Today, we?re proud to announce the next Deep Learning Reference Stack release, incorporating customer feedback and delivering an enhanced user experience with support for expanded use cases.

  • Clear Linux Releases Deep Learning Reference Stack 4.0 For Better AI Performance

    Intel's Clear Linux team on Wednesday announced their Deep Learning Reference Stack 4.0 during the Linux Foundation's Open-Source Summit North America event taking place in San Diego. Clear Linux's Deep Learning Reference Stack continues to be engineered for showing off the most features and maximum performance for those interested in AI / deep learning and running on Intel Xeon Scalable CPUs. This optimized stack allows developers to more easily get going with a tuned deep learning stack that should already be offering near optimal performance.