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The latest articles from GamingOnLinux
Updated: 3 hours 9 min ago

Super stylish naval combat and adventure game "Abandon Ship" now has a Linux beta

Friday 2nd of August 2019 12:05:23 PM

Tags: Beta, Indie Game, Humble Store, Steam, Adventure

Abandon Ship caught my eye some time ago, thanks to the incredible style inspired by classic Naval Oil Paintings. The developer said it would eventually come to Linux and that time is fast approaching with a Beta now up.

Be the Captain. Survive on the Edge in a World with Consequences.
In Abandon Ship you take command of a ship and her crew, exploring a diverse, procedurally generated world, taking on quests and dealing with random events. Frequently, you will end up engaging other ships in combat, the player having to employ their best tactics in order to out-manoeuvre and out-gun the enemy. 

The game focuses on “Age of Sail” ships in a Fantasy setting, framed in an Art Style inspired by classic Naval Oil Paintings.

Want to try it out before the official Linux release and provide some feedback? If you own a copy or go and pick it up now, right click on the game in your Steam library and go to Properties, hit the Beta tab and enter this password: "lt27Utrx5k618vS", this will give you access to the "linuxtesting" branch.

Just recently, it had a huge update too named Sword of the Cult which adds a whole new campaign, three new regions to explore, extended the main story and a lot more. Check out the update trailer:

Watch video on

Feature Highlight:

  • Discover a huge amount of unique, story-filled islands across diverse biomes and themed areas: Fight ghost ships in the Haunted Seas. Ward off giant arachnids in the Spider Islands. Regions filled with poisonous gas, icebergs, cannibals and much more await.
  • Explore a fantasy world that reacts to your actions. Engage in piracy and become a hunted Captain. Undertake quests that may drastically change the environment – or the entire world. Make decisions that create allies or enemies that return to help or seek vengeance.
  • Battle enemy ships, fortifications and sea monsters in vicious tactical combat, employing your best tactics to out-manoeuvre and out-gun the enemy.
  • Weather and environmental conditions affect your battles: Tidal waves, lightning strikes, volcanic bombardments and blizzards are just some of the modifiers that impact your strategy.

The developer told me, that if all goes well the Linux version will officially release in late August. The more testers they get, the better this will be of course.

Interested? You can find Abandon Ship on Humble Store and Steam.

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Linux Mint 19.2 now officially available across multiple desktop flavours

Friday 2nd of August 2019 11:48:25 AM

Tags: Distro News

It's distribution release day! At least for Linux Mint anyway, with Linux Mint 19.2 now officially available across multiple desktop flavours.

A pretty good choice for those new to Linux and wanting to dip their toes into some Linux gaming, this brand new distribution release comes with numerous new features and enhancements. Their main and most supported desktop is Cinnamon, with both MATE and Xfce spins also available for Mint 19.2.

Pictured: Linux Mint 19.2 Tina Cinnamon Edition

What's new and improved?

It varies slightly based on your choice of desktop with it including Cinnamon 4.2, MATE 1.22 and Xfce 4.12. All versions offer Linux kernel 4.15 as standard (more available) and an Ubuntu 18.04 package base.

Some other highlights include:

  • The Update Manager now shows how long kernels are supported, along with the ability to queue up multiple Kernel version installs and removals.
  • The Update Manager also now supports non-generic Kernels
  • The "System Reports" tool, mintreport, was given a new look and a better layout
  • Cinnamon 4.2 uses less RAM, along with the Muffin window manager seeing many optimizations
  • The ability to switch VSYNC on or off no longer requires restarting Cinnamon
  • The application menu is faster and it now identifies and distinguishes duplicates.
  • You can change the appearance of scrollbars
  • The Nemo file manager now allows you to pin files, to have them always show up at the top of a list
  • Improved Samba support
  • The excellent Boot-Repair tool was added to the ISOs
  • Lots of changes to the Mint-Y theme, to improve contrast

All sounds pretty good to me, lots of changes aimed at making every part of Linux Mint look and feel better.

Looking to download and try Linux Mint? You can find the downloads here, which are available in both 32bit and 64bit variants with either Cinnamon, MATE or Xfce desktops.

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Logic World (prev. The Ultimate Nerd Game) release delayed until October

Friday 2nd of August 2019 11:24:03 AM

Tags: Indie Game, Steam,, Delayed, Simulation, Sandbox, Puzzle

Logic World from Mouse Hat Games (previously called The Ultimate Nerd Game) is delayed, originally due this Summer they've decided to push it back until October.

Speaking about the delay in this post, they said "we just aren't ready" and they "don't want to make sacrifices to the quality of the game" along with not having to deal with any crunch. All fair enough, I would rather have a healthy developer put out a good game after a delay.

Watch video on

Feature Highlight:

  • Digital Logic - Build circuits that work the same way real world computer chips do.
  • Challenges - Solve puzzles from simple logic gates to complex machines like calculators and data storage.
  • Multiplayer - Logic World is built from the ground up for collaborative multiplayer. Take on Challenges with your friends or build together freely in Sandbox mode.
  • Performance - Build massive circuits and simulate them at thousands of updates per second - all without lag.
  • Modding - Logic World features powerful modding tools - the same tools the developers are using to make the game.
  • Online Hub - Players can upload their builds, mods, and custom challenges and share them with other players.

Linux support is still confirmed for the game, so I will be taking a look at release. If there are any more changes to the release date, I will let you know.

You can wishlist/follow Logic World on and Steam.

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The incredibly fierce roguelike Jupiter Hell has now entered Early Access

Thursday 1st of August 2019 05:26:02 PM

Tags: Vulkan, Indie Game, Roguelike, Early Access, New Release, GOG, Steam

With tactical turn-based combat, an impressive visual style and a thick atmosphere Jupiter Hell has now entered Early Access. Disclosure: I personally funded it on Kickstarter, the developer gave me earlier access.

Jupiter Hell is a classic, turn-based roguelike set in a 90's flavored sci-fi universe. Set on the moons of Jupiter, the game pits a lone space marine against overwhelming demonic forces. Rip and tear zombies, demons and unmentionable monstrosities, using classic weaponry such as shotguns, chainguns, railguns and the trusty chainsaw. All to the shine of CRT monitors and the tune of heavy metal!

This is one game I've thoroughly enjoyed watching grow, from the early versions that were promising up until now, they've made huge progress on it. Recently adding Vulkan support (with OpenGL an option), it performs amazingly well on my system. ChaosForge certainly know their stuff, they did make DoomRL (now "DRL" after legal stuff) after all and that was pretty fun, with Jupiter Hell acting as a spiritual successor.

Watch video on

Entering Early Access is just the beginning for Jupiter Hell. ChaosForge have many plans including full modding support, full procedural destruction of levels, a bigger trait and item variety, hacking and more terminal interaction, simple cut-scenes with more plot information, more enemies, more weapons and pretty much more of everything.

A little-known fact about me: I struggle daily with an attention disorder, so for me, roguelikes are often incredibly difficult and frustrating to enjoy. A lot of them rely on retro aesthetics and completely hidden interfaces, with tens of keybinds you have to learn. Jupiter Hell is of a different sort, while in a few ways it does have retro inspirations (like the interface styling), it's very much a modern game. You don't need to learn a ton of things to enjoy it, overall it's quite streamlined and accessible which for me is important.

While the gameplay is turn-based, it doesn't actually feel like a traditional turn-based roguelike. Everything about it feels so fluid, to the point that I can just keep hammering away at my keyboard and play it like it's almost real-time. Pretty crazy really, easily the smoothest turn-based game I've ever played. You know what else helps? Jupiter Hell is a really good-looking game too.

On top of that, the screen effects used can be completely turned off as demonstrated in this quick video. So if you do prefer a clean looking game, you can have it. Also, if you don't like profanity in your games, you can turn that off too.

Is it actually worth picking it up now before it's finished? Yes, totally. I've personally already blasted my way through multiple hours of it and plan many more.

Find Jupiter Hell on GOG and Steam. A full release is expected before the end of 2020.

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Total War: THREE KINGDOMS is getting a horde-style arcade mode as a free update

Thursday 1st of August 2019 03:26:24 PM

Tags: Strategy, Update, Upcoming, Steam, Feral Interactive

Creative Assembly just announced a brand new game mode coming to Total War: THREE KINGDOMS, it's called Dynasty Mode developed in partnership with Intel.

Dynasty Mode is a horde-style arcade mode, that will be free for all owners of Total War: THREE KINGDOMS and will release as an update at the same time as the Eight Princes DLC. For Windows, that's on August 8th but Linux gamers will have a little wait. Feral Interactive said on Twitter "The hordes of Dynasty Mode surge onto macOS and Linux shortly after Windows.".

Have a look at the trailer:

Watch video on

Dynasty Mode can be played solo or online in three-player co-op mode with friends. You will face waves of enemies, which grow in strength and size over time with every third wave having powerful enemies heroes.

This mode will also allow you to expand enemy unit sizes by up to "600%", to really test your skill and push the performance of your PC to its limit. Creative Assembly said they worked with Intel, to help their game engine take better advanced of multi-core CPUs, since upping the enemy unit sizes will take a lot more power.

For the full info, see this post on the Total War blog. Need a copy of Total War: THREE KINGDOMS? You can pick it up on Humble Store, Feral Store and Steam.

I'll admit, this sounds like a huge amount of fun! Can't wait to jump in. Will let you know when Feral Interactive provide a date for the Linux version update.

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Wind Runners, a side-scrolling dogfighting action game is announced for Linux

Thursday 1st of August 2019 02:31:14 PM

Tags: Action, Indie Game, Roguelike, Steam, Upcoming, Pixel Graphics

Developed by Ludic Studios (Akane), they just recently announced their new game Wind Runners. It's a side-scrolling dogfighting roguelike and it does look pretty sweet.

They haven't released too many details on it at all, other than announcing the Steam page is live with a short description which reads as:

For centuries, the Realm uses fear and its military superiority to keep the Zarah Igna System under control, but a group of rebellious Ishma arises to fight its tyranny. With their superior aerial combat skills, the Wind Runners will bring freedom to all who live under the shadow of oppression!

Wind Runners is rogue like side scroller dogfight game. Choose one of the available ships, each one with unique weapons, evolve its power with equipment and improvements acquired along the game and go fight against "The Torments", giant metal beasts, scattered throughout the planets of Zarah Igna system.

As for the gameplay, it looks quite a bit like both Hyperspace Dogfights and Luftrausers, with a different style to it. Take a look:

Watch video on

You will notice near the end, a little "Tux" Linux icon shows up. Oh how I do love seeing that icon in trailers!

The style does look pretty good, the explosions especially look awesome. Very keen to know more.

Until they announce more details you can wishlist/follow it on the Steam page, which mentions a release to come in early 2020.

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Brigador: Up-Armored Edition adds new levels and mod tools, a quick Linux how-to

Thursday 1st of August 2019 02:02:09 PM

Tags: Action, Indie Game, GOG,, Steam, Cyberpunk, HOWTO

The neon-soaked destruction-heavy game Brigador: Up-Armored Edition just recently got updated, bringing in some new content and allowing everyone to jump in to make mods and maps with the Community Reinforcements Update.

Working with modders the game now has some extra F-series campaign maps to blast through, Quatro Santos and Long Roads Freelance runs which feature all new Freelance levels by community designers and also new combinations of 2-3 map Freelance runs suggested by the community.

While new levels officially added in are sweet, the chance to now add in more is even sweeter. They've released a set of modding tools, available on Steam as a free DLC. However, it's only currently built for Windows. From what they said in their Discord Channel, it is planned for Linux (and Mac) as well they just haven't had time.

Determined not to be stopped there, with thanks to some help from the super friendly people in their official Discord Channel, here's the steps you can take to enable playing extra content in the Linux version. Firstly, you need to manually download the mod tools pack here, then simply move all the files from the "BrigadorModkit" directory into your Brigador install folder.

Once done, you need to run this command (once) from the Brigador install folder:

./brigador --console -dumppack

When you've found some mods and maps you want (you can see lots in the uploads section of their Discord Channel), place them directly into your Brigador install and then run this to have them show up in-game:

./brigador --console -genpack

You need to repeat the last command above each time you add something new in, but it's really easy and it does work. Here's a little shot from a community map called "Life's a Beach" from modder Gotcha played in the Linux version:

I'm completely terrible at it! A surprisingly challenging map, as soon as an alarm goes off tons of enemy units start looking around for you and there's a number of really powerful enemies too. I don't let that stop me though, stomping over everything in Brigador is such a huge amount of fun.

As a reminder, Stellar Jockeys are also working on a sequel named Brigador Killers which is confirmed to be coming to Linux next year.

You can pick up Brigador from GOG, and Steam.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to see what other delightful extras their modding community have been cooking up, there's all sorts from maps to new mechs to pilot and weapons too.

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Don't Starve Together adds another new free character with Warly

Thursday 1st of August 2019 11:40:51 AM

Tags: Indie Game, Steam, Update, Survival

Klei Entertainment continue to support and update their incredibly stylish multiplayer survival game Don't Starve Together.

It's still a popular game too, regularly pulling in nearly fifteen thousand players each day which is impressive for an indie game that's a few years old. Especially impressive when you think about all the games that have released since April 2016! Just goes to show how fun Don't Starve Together actually is.

Just recently, a new character named Warly was added in free along with an animated short:

Watch video on

Here's what's available as of the latest update with Warly:

  • Warly can craft a Chef Pouch, which is a small backpack that also helps to preserve food items a little bit longer.
  • Warly can craft a Portable Crock Pot, Portable Grinding Mill, and Portable Seasoning Station, usable only by him.
  • The Portable Crock Pot cooks 25% faster and includes new exclusive dishes with unique bonuses and effects.
  • The Portable Grinding Mill can be used to craft a variety of seasoning powders.
  • The Portable Seasoning Station combines a prepared dish with seasoning powder to add bonus effects to the food.
  • Warly has an increased max hunger of 250, but it decreases 20% faster than other characters.
  • Warly can only eat prepared dishes from a Crock Pot.
  • Warly remembers the dishes he ate for up to two days and will enjoy them less every time they are repeated.
  • Added new vegetables, available to all characters: Toma Root, Potato, Asparagus, Pepper, Onion, and Garlic.
  • Added several new Crock Pot recipes, available to all characters.

Next up for DST, it seems Klei will be giving Woodie a refresh which will happen in "early September".

I remember being completely hooked on Don't Starve when it first came out, we also played Don't Starve Together on the GamingOnLinux 6 year birthday livestream…which did not end well.

You can find Don't Starve Together on Steam.

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Boxtron, a Steam compatibility tool to run games through a native Linux DOSBox

Thursday 1st of August 2019 11:14:03 AM

Tags: Steam, DOSBox, Open Source

Here's something that's awesome! Thanks to the new features in the Linux Steam client that came with Steam Play, you can add in other compatibility tools to run games through and Boxtron is one such tool.

Boxtron enables you to use a native Linux build of DOSBox, to run games with just like you would with Steam Play's Proton. This does give a number of benefits, as the developer listed:

  • Lower input lag (compared to DOSBox inside Proton)
  • Steam features working as expected (e.g. Steam Cloud, Controller settings or recording of time played)
  • Better fullscreen support, especially on multi-monitor setups*
  • Steam Overlay working out of the box*
  • More configuration options and better defaults*
  • Automatic detection of MIDI hardware, with software synthesiser used as fallback
  • Automatic MIDI setup for supported titles (click Play and enjoy pre-configured MIDI music)

* - compared to vanilla DOSBox

You simply install it with the very simple instructions on the GitHub, which is simply creating the "compatibilitytools.d" folder (if it doesn't already exist) in "/.local/share/Steam/" and then stick in a Boxtron release into a folder named "boxtron".

This will then enable you to select it as your choice tool, like my example here with X-COM: UFO Defense, a game that doesn't have Linux support officially:

Then when you run it, all is great and it's using a properly up to date Linux version of DOSBox:

Valve actually responded (and agreed) to a feature request from the developer, to add in support for a system-wide location to install extra compatibility tools. The idea, is that Steam will look inside some extra system directories, so you could in future install extra compatibility tools from your package manager which opens things up quite a lot. It would also simplify the experience, allowing you to download a single package to install instead of messing with adding folders, unpacking compressed folders and installing dependencies which sounds awesome

Find Boxtron on GitHub.

Additionally, the developer of Boxtron is also working on Luxtorpeda, another compatibility tool aimed at running certain games through native Linux game engines. Examples of this would be OpenXcom for X-COM: UFO Defense, ioquake3 for Quake III Arena and so on. This project is currently a work in progress, but also very exciting.

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Pegasus Frontend, another open source game launcher has Linux support

Thursday 1st of August 2019 10:32:54 AM

Tags: Apps, Open Source

Not one I've covered before: Pegasus Frontend, a free and open source (GPL) game launcher that seems pretty sweet has Linux support.

Pegasus is a graphical frontend for browsing your game library (especially retro games) and launching them from one place. It's focusing on customizability, cross platform support (including embedded devices) and high performance.

The focus on customization is certainly interesting, giving you the ability to completely the change the way it looks. It's even compatible with EmulationStation's gamelist files, which is an older emulator front-end which no longer seems to be maintained.

I've been playing with it for a while and I quite like it, it's still rough around the edges as it seems to be reasonably early in development. Things like metadata for some games just randomly not appearing, GOG support on Linux isn't ideal (although it works) and so on.

Pegasus Frontend just recently had another release with Alpha 12. It has builds available for Linux, Raspberry Pi, Android, macOS and Windows.

Find the official site here, source code on GitHub.

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Blessed Surface, an open-world 2D platformer that's about exploration as much as chaotic combat

Thursday 1st of August 2019 10:00:39 AM

Tags: Action, Steam, Indie Game, Platformer, New Release

An action-platformer with an open-world approach, diverse combat system and character building? Sign me up. Blessed Surface sounds like it could be a lot of fun.

It released on Steam in February, with Linux support arriving back in May which somehow I completely missed. It has continued to receive some pretty large updates since the original release, adding in all sorts of fun sounding features from new weapons to new creatures to encounter.

To show it off a little the developer also recently put up a video of "48 things to do in Blessed Surface":

Watch video on

Feature Highlight:

  • A seamless, dungeon-like open world with over 10 uniquely themed areas, including portals, secret passages, and more
  • Large population of well over 50 unique enemies and bosses
  • Skill-based combat system with many different weapons, armor, guns, and over 100 passive/triggered perks
  • Functioning ecosystem allowing for creature population control, invasive species, and other innovative mechanics
  • Random and timed events
  • Keyword-based dialogue system, hiding many secrets if you know what to ask, allowing players to take conversation at their own pace
  • Deep lore and stories to discover
  • Basic two-player online multiplayer; players are synchronized, enemies from another player's world are not (easily join via Steam, no port forwarding or setup required)

You can find Blessed Surface on Steam.

As an additional note, Corpse King Games are also working on a new game called Ufflegrim, a "roguelike with card-based, creature summoning combat". It has a Steam page up too and it seems like this will support Linux at release.

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VICCP, a mysterious puzzle game about pushing buttons on a control panel

Thursday 1st of August 2019 09:40:56 AM

Tags: Steam, New Release, Puzzle, Indie Game

VICCP looks quite unusual, a puzzle game about a strange control panel that you need to tinker with to figure out how it all works and what exactly it does.

You are using mysterious remote control that you can control. Click on everything and explore. Make decisions, solve puzzles. Every choice you make will have consequences. The game has a lot of endings that you have to find yourself.

Originally released in June, the developer later added Linux support to it in early July.

Watch video on

Feature Highlight:

  • Lots of puzzles
  • Atmospheric graphics and soundtrack
  • Achievements/bonuses for each ending you find
  • Old school spirit
  • A lot of endings.
  • Many references and Easter eggs.

Seems like a pretty fun idea for a game, very similar to Please, Don’t Touch Anything which also has Linux support (Linux came after the original release) and is highly rated. VICCP only has around 33 user reviews, with it being a bit of a mixed bag at "Mostly Positive". If you like vague and difficult puzzle games, this might be something to take a look at.

You can find VICCP on Steam.

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive adds new maps and a "Scrimmage" game mode

Thursday 1st of August 2019 09:29:47 AM

Tags: Valve, Steam, FPS, Update, Free Game

Valve have updated Counter-Strike: Global Offensive to introduce some new maps as well as mix up competitive play with a new "Scrimmage" game mode.

The Workout map has been removed, with Breach and Seaside making an appearance in Defusal Group Sigma. Breach, Seaside and Ruby have also been added as new "Scrimmage Maps" to official competitive matchmaking.

Scrimmage 5v5 has the same rules as official competitive matchmaking, except there's zero restrictions on player skill levels and your Competitive Wins counter will not be incremented upon winning the match. This means, you can play it with anyone. Abandoning the match will result in a penalty too, as it's basically unranked competitive play.

They also adjusted the Vertigo map to give it a bit of a refresh which includes a new approach to B site, they removed "rafters" around B site entrance, offset HVAC units on B site and numbered them, added a way to throw utility into B site without being exposed, removed one-way drop down elevator shaft and more.

You can see all the changes made here. As usual you may find CS:GO free on Steam.

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Gunslugs:Rogue Tactics, the tactical action-platformer confirmed for release on August 6th

Thursday 1st of August 2019 08:34:37 AM

Tags: Action, Platformer, Stealth, Upcoming, Steam, Indie Game

Possible one of the most interesting action-platformer games I've seen in a while, Gunslugs:Rogue Tactics is launching on August 6th.

I'm a big fan (understatement) of games like Broforce, which focus heavily on over-the-top action and a lot of platformers simply go along and follow that design. This is why Gunslugs:Rogue Tactics has my attention, it doesn't seem like yet another platformer. Not only does it have some random generation, to keep things from feeling stale, it has a focus on tactical decision making and stealth on top of some ridiculous looking action of course. The result, as you can see in the trailer below, looks damn good:

Watch video on

Feature Highlight:

  • Objectives – complete missions to progress in the game.
  • Stealth – Avoid security cameras, hide from enemies and distract them with rocks, tennis-balls or other throwable objects.
  • Loot – A variation of items is there to help you on your missions, shields, helmets, different shoe types, EMP's, weapons, and more. Learn how to use each item in the most optimal way to help you survive missions.
  • Procedural generation – Every game will be generated differently, increasing the replay value.

Confirmed by the developer when asked on Twitter, the launch date of August 6th does include Linux support too.

You can wishlist and follow it on Steam. Be sure you have your platform set correctly on Steam, to ensure you show up as a Linux wishlist now and in future.

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Valve add additional titles to the Steam Play Whitelist

Thursday 1st of August 2019 08:30:50 AM

Tags: Steam Play, Valve, Steam, Wine

After recently pushing out a pretty big update to Steam Play with Proton 4.11, Valve have now added some additional titles to their Whitelist.

What is the Whitelist? Currently, this is the list Valve have accepted to be shown as a Windows game you can install in the Linux Steam client, without enabling Steam Play on your entire library. They are also set to a specific version of Proton by Valve, to hopefully give the best experience.

The new titles added yesterday were:

They did also add some special configuration options for GRID, METAL GEAR RISING: REVENGEANCE, QUAKE Mission Pack 1: Scourge of Armagon and QUAKE Mission Pack 2: Dissolution of Eternity. Even though GRID and the Metal Gear game are not whitelisted yet.

Valve don't seem to have a public list anywhere I could see, but thankfully SteamDB are tracking it here, which shows the above and all others previously added. There's now about 168 titles in the whitelist.

This is likely the list Valve will use to eventually show Steam Play on the store pages for games, how they do that though we have no idea as they haven't talked about it lately. In the original Steam Play announcement, Valve simply said "whitelisted games will not be offered for purchase or marked as supported on Linux on the Store during the initial Beta period".

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Towertale, a story-driven 2D action game with a focus on big boss battles is coming to Linux

Wednesday 31st of July 2019 04:41:23 PM

Tags:, Indie Game, Steam, Action, Upcoming

With some absolutely insane looking action sequences, Towertale just recently released and they're planning to support Linux.

Towertale is a 2D, story-driven action game that has a heavy focus on boss battles. Fight your way up the elusive Tower and challenge the bosses of each level. Unveil the mystery that lies up in its peak. Play four different stories and unlock multiple endings. Join Lionel, Faindrel, Lord Snicklefritz and "Dark Echo" in their quest to get to the top!

In response to a question on Twitter about Linux support, the developer said they're planning a Linux release in August. The same was also confirmed when asked on Reddit.

Watch video on

It has a healthy sounding feature list too. With fast-paced action and four playable characters, there's a number of different ways to play it. You will fight across 12 hand-made levels, taking on 17 different boss creatures in multiple phases.

There's also multiple endings for the story, an arcade mode for those who wish to blast through without the story elements, another different mode to fight the bosses at your own pace and difficulty, Steam Achivements, gamepad support and according to the developer it has over 120 cut-scenes to explain the story.

Until the Linux release is up, you can follow it on Steam and

Hat tip to HardPenguin on Twitter, also Win8 in our Discord.

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Previously a Humble Original, A Short Hike: The Extra Mile has released with Linux support

Wednesday 31st of July 2019 03:42:11 PM

Tags: Indie Game, Steam,, New Release, Adventure, Exploration, Casual

A Short Hike originally released as an original indie game for a Humble Monthly a few months ago, now expanded and re-released with A Short Hike: The Extra Mile.

Hike, climb, and soar through the peaceful mountainside landscapes of Hawk Peak Provincial Park. Follow the marked trails or explore the backcountry as you make your way to the summit. Along the way, meet other hikers, discover hidden treasures, and take in the world around you.

This newly updated and released game adds in Linux support as part of an expanded game overall. The developer said a bunch of ideas couldn't quite fit into the original release, so here we are. It includes new characters to meet, fishing, a better water shader, a new accessibility feature to change the pixel scaling and so on.

Watch video on

Feature Highlight:

  • Explore the island any way you like. Choose your own path to follow and see where it leads you. You never know what you might stumble into!
  • Hike at your own pace — there’s no need to rush to the summit! Take your time fishing along the river banks or swimming by the lakeshore.
  • Collect hidden treasures to reach new heights. Try taking a dive off the mountain peaks to soar above the forests.
  • Chat with the other hikers you meet along your route. You might be able to help each other out!
  • Listen to a lush original soundtrack by Mark Sparling that progresses dynamically as you explore the wilderness.

You can find A Short Hike: The Extra Mile on Steam and Seems like a really sweet experience if you're after something a little more chilled-out.

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Lovecraftian horror RPG "Stygian: Reign of the Old Ones" announced for release in September

Wednesday 31st of July 2019 03:01:22 PM

Tags: Horror, Upcoming, Steam, RPG

Cultic Games and 1C Entertainment have today announced the Lovecraftian horror RPG, Stygian: Reign of the Old Ones, will be releasing with Linux support on September 26th.

Step into the 1920s as you create your own character based on one of eight different archetypes pulled from the pages of cosmic horror history - from the academic to the occultist - each with their own unique attributes, skills and belief systems. These belief systems in particular determine how your characters cope with the warped reality of the world around them. This, like the classic CRPG titles that came before it, provides players with an open-ended narrative to unearth as they attempt to find sense in the mysterious otherworldly happenings that have befallen the town of Arkham.

Funded originally on Kickstarter back in 2016, where well over two thousand backers pledged over seventy thousand euros. Linux support was planned, so it's great to see nothing change there. They even have a "Tux" Linux icon in the brand new trailer:

Watch video on

It really does sound like it's going to be a very interesting game to play, just check out the impressive feature list they sent over to us today:

  • A hand drawn 2D world reflecting Lovecraft's themes of cosmic horror and dread.
  • Enemies, environments and storylines inspired by Lovecraft’s iconic original works. Take part in quests inspired by your favorite stories and see them play out according to your own decisions and role-playing style.
  • Choose from 8 main character Archetypes, each with its own origin backstory and specialties.
  • A host of weird companions to accompany you on your ill-starred journey: the lonely, antediluvian 'Outsider', a fallen soldier of the Great War reanimated by Herbert West. Recruit these and other outlandish beings to your crew.
  • Your character's Sanity and mental state influences their available dialogue options, offering both advantages and hindrances. Sometimes it pays to be mad in a world gone mad!
  • Stygian's Belief System determines how your characters cope with the warped reality of the new Arkham, as well as the rate at which they regenerate lost Sanity. Belief Systems also offer unique dialogue options, expanding the breadth of role-playing possibilities.
  • A new kind of spell system which sometimes takes more than it gives. Being a master of the occult is not as simple as flinging colored missiles from your fingertips. The black magic of Stygian is potent but may cost you your mind, your health, and possibly even more.
  • Strategic, turn-based combat from a 2D perspective, similar to the classic Heroes of Might and Magic games.
  • The struggle in Stygian is not to save the world, for that battle is lost already. Pursue your own goals in these end times: salvation, vendetta, or perhaps something darker.

Currently only a Steam store release seems to have been announced. They did originally say there wanted it on GOG too, so I will let you know when that situation changes.

Will you be picking up a copy of this one?

Seems this was another missing from our dedicated Crowdfunding Page, it has been added.

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Waves 2: Notorious, an absolutely mad twin-stick shooter arrives on Linux

Wednesday 31st of July 2019 02:43:52 PM

Tags: Early Access, Indie Game, Twin-stick shooter, Shoot 'em up, Action, New Release

As a follow-up to 2011's Waves, Waves 2: Notorious has arrived on Linux as part of the 0.73 Early Access update on Steam. Originally entering Early Access in late 2015 it has continued to see big updates and the developer, Rob Hale (aka Squid In A Box Ltd), is planning a full release in Q2 next year. Note: Key provided by the developer.

So what is it? Waves 2: Notorious puts you in the shoes of a Hacker or "Runner", tasked with infiltrating computer networks in a cyberpunk-styled version of cyberspace. Here you must protect yourself against the attacks of the AI "Administrator", while uploading viruses and downloading corporate secrets in an attempt to build your notoriety.

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Since the developer provided a key, I've been testing it on Manjaro and the experience is absolutely crazy. I never played the original, so I can't compare there but this is a fantastic twin-stick shooter to sink your teeth into.

It has a procedurally generated single-player campaign, which is a little unusual for a twin-stick shooter like this. You go through servers, picking nodes to tackle which are the actual levels. As for the action, the idea is not to just destroy every enemy on the screen, as during each level you will need to unlock certain nodes by shooting them to then hack into them by staying inside a certain area (tricky with lots of enemies around) and once done you can access the level exit. This can be challenging, due to the fast moving enemies as well as the enemy types that grow across the floor.

There's the usual enemies that just mindlessly move around but it doesn't take long to turn the difficulty up a notch, with fast-moving enemies that go right for you and some that will attempt to move around your bullets, while also getting gradually closer to you. The design of the enemy types is awesome, as is the bright neon visual style. Brilliant music as well, really helps get your blood pumping.

On top of the campaign there's also six different Arcade game modes with online leader-boards, which also has some progression in the form of Stars. You can use these Stars to unlock around 36 new items including weapons, abilities and more. The developer said it gives you around "46,656" different possible combinations, to get your character exactly how you want it to be.

Additionally, it also recently gained an experimental Last Man Standing multiplayer battle mode, a Battle Royale-like multiplayer mode in an arcade game? Sure, sounds good to me. Each player competes against the AI to be the last remaining.

Performance is mostly great, on the highest settings it drops occasionally when there's a huge amount going on but it always remains smooth and responsive which is the important bit.

If some of the screen effects bother you, thankfully they can be turned off to give you a much cleaner and clearer look. You can turn off the fish-eye like effect on the screen, camera shake and the glitching effect when you're hit.

While it's not finished since it's in Early Access, I still consider it an easy recommendation even now due to how fun it is. This is simply a must-have for fans of twin-stick shooters.

Find Waves 2: Notorious on Steam, it's 20% off until August 5th.

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Space colony sim "Oxygen Not Included" from Klei Entertainment has left Early Access

Wednesday 31st of July 2019 12:15:05 PM

Tags: Indie Game, Steam, New Release, Simulation, Sandbox

Probably some of the finest work yet from Klei Entertainment, the space colony sim Oxygen Not Included has now left Early Access.

Oxygen Not Included is a space-colony simulation game. Deep inside an alien space rock your industrious crew will need to master science, overcome strange new lifeforms, and harness incredible space tech to survive, and possibly, thrive.

This isn't just Klei pushing out what was there as released, it comes along with a big update to the game too. There's a bunch of new buildings including an Ethanol Distiller, Airborne Critter Bait, Wood Burner, Duplicant Motion Sensor and more. Two new critters are included with the Pokeshell and Pip, five new plants, new animations, new types of asteroids to colonize, new foods, new biomes and…the list goes on. They've clearly put a huge amount of work into this release.

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For modding, there's some big changes and improvements which includes Linux support for the OniUploader tool as well. Really nice to see Linux not being left out there!

Now that it has launched, they will focus on fixing any bugs and balancing issues. However, once that's done they will also be looking into additional content. They're not saying anything just yet, but they did note to keep an eye out for announcements and they previously mentioned DLC would be coming in future.

Do I recommend it? Absolutely! Klei are a favourite developer of mine for many reasons. Constant Linux support, awesome games and friendly developers. Oxygen Not Included especially is incredibly engrossing and the Linux version seems to work very nicely.

You can find it on Steam, it's also on sale with 33% off until August 6th.

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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.