Between stable builds, the developers launch a large number of Beta versions that integrate a lot of new features. The previous update for this branch was a really small one, but now a more important version has been released, prompting users to upgrade the application.
Most of the time, the Steam client is pretty stable and users don't usually encounter any problems with it, either about performance or stability. This doesn't mean that the software is perfect, because there still are instances where some features or options might not work as expected.
Yesterday marked the first release of Tesseract, the open-source game forked from the Cube 2: Sauerbraten code-base two years ago and since then has just been worked on by a handful of open-source developers. After trying out this inaugural Tesseract version, it's quite a nice small game with decent OpenGL visual capabilities and okay textures with its in-game assets being comparable roughly to Xonotic or Unvanquished.
Two of Valve's undisputed classics are making their Android debut today, courtesy of Nvidia's Shield console: Portal and Half-Life 2. Costing $10 each, the two games were ported by Nvidia, which explains why they're only playable on the Shield. Still, the job has been done with Valve's unreserved blessing and a promise by Doug Lombardi that you "can expect the same gameplay" as on the original PC versions. Even if the recreations aren't perfect, having two of the PC's greatest titles available on the Shield brings it a lot closer to its promise of being a true mobile console. With a price cut to $199 and a growing library of games and features, Nvidia's efforts at recreating PC-class gaming on an Android portable are looking increasingly compelling.
Here's a brain dump of the things that sometimes drive me crazy about OpenGL. (Note these are strictly my own opinions, not those of Valve or my coworkers. I'm also in a ranty-type mood today after grappling with OpenGL for several years now..) My major motivation to posting this: the GL API needs a reboot because IMO Mantle/D3D12 are going to most likely eat it for lunch soon, so we should start talking and thinking about this stuff now.
Some are minor issues, and some are specific to tracing the API, but all these issues add up to API "friction" that sometimes make it difficult to encourage other devs to get into the GL API or ecosystem.
4MLinux Game Edition, a special Linux distribution based on Busybox, Dropbear, OpenSSH, and PuTTY, which also features a large collection of games old and new, has just reached version 8.2 Beta and is now available for testing.
The 4MLinux distributions are among the smallest ones that you can find that still retain a desktop environment that can still be used for day-to-day operations. All the 4MLinux OSes are designed with different purposes in mind and, in this case, it's all about gaming.
The distribution comes in the form of a Live version, but users can choose to install it after they booted into the system. This can be done very easily because users also have access to a very handy installer that should take care of any problems and issues that users might encounter...
Valve just released another update for their SteamOS, update 105. Apart from the regular fixes and patches, this update increases the list of hardware SteamOS is compatible with out of the box. This new update includes support for hardware from different vendors, so that you don’t have to go about exploring about for an alternative to enable that one hardware that the OS isn’t detecting.
Remember Playkot's Supercity? Game artist Paul Geraskin liked has just started a crowdfunding campaign to support working on a new indie game, inspired by Howard Lovecraft: Road to Providence. As with Supercity, Road to Providence will be created with open source tools: Krita, Blender, and jMonkeyEngine.
Right out of the gate, Renderdoc isn't as useful to Linux users as is Valve's VOGL or other utilities like APITrace. Because, as it stands right now, Renderdoc only targets the Microsoft Direct3D 10/11 graphics API, but support for OpenGL is planned under this open-source Renderdoc. While still targeting D3D11 right now, there is basic build support for Linux of Renderdoc. I imagine in the months ahead it will get much more interesting once there's OpenGL API support and open-source contributors have had their hand at improving the Renderdoc Linux support.