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GOG com Now Officially Support Linux Games

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Today marks a big day for Linux and DRM free gaming. GOG.com are now officially supporting Linux on their store, and so that's pretty much all major online stores supporting Linux. The only other store I can think of that doesn't support us is Origin, and who really wants that anyway? Oh, and there's Uplay...

This turnaround of GOG now supporting Linux is amazing, as we spoke to them in September last year where they confirmed to us that they were not going to support Linux. Then, in March this year, they confirmed that they are indeed going to support Linux.

GOG for Linux launches today with over 50 Linux titles in their store. Among the games are a number of titles that have never been officially available to Linux gamers before, including Pirates!, Sid Meier's Colonization, FlatOut, 3D Realms hits like Blake Stone and Rise of the Triad, and more.

I had a chance to get a few questions answered by GOG themselves again, and the bit I emphasised in the first paragraph made me smile!

What changed within GOG to go from no support to actually having games for Linux in the space of just over a year? The original point was that there were too many distributions and GOG didn't want to support just one or two, so what changed?

We were thinking about it a lot and the feedback from the Linux community was vital. We basically revisited the whole idea and decided to make it one of our main goals in 2014, with a "whatever it takes" kind of approach. Our main Linux guy even happens to have been one of the GamingOnLinux faithfuls! After many internal discussions we decided that it will simply be better to support the two most popular distributions, Ubuntu and Mint, rather than not do it at all. Currently, GOG.com is the only digital distribution platform that will provide extensive support for specific Linux distros, instead of not taking any responsibility for the quality and compatibility of the content we have on offer. For all the Linux gamers using other distros, the least we could do was to give them .deb and .tar.gz files to work with.

Still, it all takes some time. GOG.com users are already used to a certain attention to detail and quality of service on our part. We wanted to deliver the best possible experience to Linux users by making sure we test the games properly, and by launching Linux on GOG.com with a solid lineup of games with many more titles in the pipeline. Keep in mind that releasing a classic game that up to that point was never available for Linux means additional contracts with rights holders and a certain amount of work from our test lab.

When is GOG planning to have Galaxy available for Linux? Will it be with the Windows release, or a delayed release? If a delayed release, why is that?

We'd rather stick to the here and now instead of talking about the future plans. We have not announced details for the launch of the Galaxy client for any single platform yet. With the project still going at full speed there is plenty of work ahead. We have made our first major step into Linux territory and we promise it's not the last one. We'll tell you more when we have details; for now, enjoy the fresh Linux compatible games.

Have GOG thought about open sourcing the Galaxy client? There have been calls for this already.

We don't want to delve into theory crafting, so the only way we can answer this right now is that we do find the idea of having our client app open source at some point in the future interesting and we're well aware of your feedback.

If you are using Wine for some games, what are your thoughts on the possible backlash of what some may feel isn't a Linux version, but merely a Wine wrapped Windows game?

This is the train of thought we followed: by using Wine, we can offer you support for some games that would otherwise never be officially available on Linux. Most of those are pretty old titles and their source code was lost ages ago, so this is basically the only way to bring them to you. It's exactly the same situation with DOS games.

We are quite aware that a certain part of the Linux crowd is less than thrilled to see games brought to Linux through a back door, so to speak. That's why all Linux versions that are using Wine wrappers have that information explicitly included in the "game requirements" field on their gamecard.

Typically on a service like Steam, if you want a refund you really have to fight for it, and given that Linux is new territory for GOG, how will you go about refunds for games that users cannot get to work?

It's simple, really. We’ve got our Money Back Guarantee for Windows and OS X users and there is no reason why it should be any different for Linux. We have officially announced that we will provide support for the two most commonly used distros: Mint and Ubuntu. If someone that fulfils that requirement is experiencing technical issues with a game and if our support can't make it work, we'll give them their money back.

I would like to thank the GOG team for answering those few question as I know they are very busy.

It will be interesting to see the reaction to games on GOG that use Wine which we knew was going to be the case anyway due to the job description including dealing with Wine. Personally, I have no issue with properly supported (support itself & refundwise) Wine wrapped, old games. If they work then that's all that matters, and it counts as a Linux sale for GOG to look at sales numbers from Linux.

I hope that a lot of developers can push games to GOG easier now that GOG is crossplatform for Linux, Mac OS, and Windows. It sure would make things easier for them. The great thing about GOG is it seems to have some level of curation as opposed to places like Desura and Steam that now seem to let tons of crapware (and that's putting it lightly) onto their stores.

The main reason we are so excited to have GOG in bed with Linux is their stance on things like refunds and DRM. They dislike DRM and they are pretty good with refunds, and those are two things Steam isn't exactly good with.

This is an important milestone for Linux gaming, so... bring it on, GOG! Now where's my cake and hat?

There is a big sale on now too, so be sure to grab some cheap games.

Final funny note: I personally asked about Linux support 4 years ago. My, how things change!

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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I am the owner of GamingOnLinux. After discovering Linux back in the days of Mandrake in 2003, I constantly came back to check on the progress of Linux until Ubuntu appeared on the scene and it helped me to really love it. You can reach me easily by emailing GamingOnLinux directly.
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mrdeathjr 24 Jul, 2014
Quoting: omer666Bought Flatout 2 right away (Wine wrapper), and I don't know if their Wine version uses CSMT but the game runs flawlessly. I'm not even using Ubuntu, I'm on Arch.

But this game run without problem on vanilla wine

View video on youtube.com

In other cases CSMT is more usefull but depend game (in ones better, in other worst)

^_^
n30p1r4t3 24 Jul, 2014
I know there are some exceptions to Mint/Ubuntu compatibility. With that being said, I still can't fathom why those two distributions (That are basically the same) only. Why Mint? (See first sentence).


I believe that it would have been better to support Debian/SteamOS. It's sad to see no love/support for some many great distributions...Arch, SuSe, Fedora, Gentoo, etc. etc.


One cannot just look at the number of "hits" on distrowatch and say that's all you're going to support. I thank GOG for their commitment to Linux, I just don't understand this aspect.

Then again if you're running Arch, etc. you should be able to figure out the issues you're experiencing and fix them. The same cannot be said for the "basic" Linux user.
omer666 24 Jul, 2014
Well I thought it was running faster than with stock Wine, but I could be mistaken.
OZSeaford 24 Jul, 2014
Good of them to support Ubuntu. They could have put debian, and thus covered more distros but hey...I'm not complaining as I am a Ubuntu user for the moment.

I own most of the games they have put on the list, but I will vote with my wallet as per usual.

I am ok with the wrappers, after all, aren't most of the Good OLD Games wrapped with DOSBOX?
Xodetaetl 24 Jul, 2014
Quoting: n30p1r4t3I know there are some exceptions to Mint/Ubuntu compatibility. With that being said, I still can't fathom why those two distributions (That are basically the same) only. Why Mint? (See first sentence).

I believe that it would have been better to support Debian/SteamOS. It's sad to see no love/support for some many great distributions...Arch, SuSe, Fedora, Gentoo, etc. etc.
SteamOS is from their competitor. Debian is less popular than Ubuntu and Mint (among gamers) according to the Steam hard/software survey.

And they are giving love (even if no tech support) to other distros by providing .tar.gz files alongside the .deb.
n30p1r4t3 24 Jul, 2014
Quoting: Xodetaetl
Quoting: n30p1r4t3I know there are some exceptions to Mint/Ubuntu compatibility. With that being said, I still can't fathom why those two distributions (That are basically the same) only. Why Mint? (See first sentence).

I believe that it would have been better to support Debian/SteamOS. It's sad to see no love/support for some many great distributions...Arch, SuSe, Fedora, Gentoo, etc. etc.
SteamOS is Valve, their competitor. Ubuntu and Mint are the most used distros (by gamers) according to the Steam hard/software survey.

And they are giving love to other distros by providing .tar.gz files alongside the .deb.

Valve and GOG are worlds apart in terms of missions. If gog supported Debian, SteamOS should be compatible. But I can't understand why the only two distributions supported are exactly the same! (See First post)
LinuxGamesTV 24 Jul, 2014
Quoting: Cheeseness
Quoting: sakurazukaNice thing is that one of Linux GOG is actually a free game so anyone can try it out.
There are two, actually! Dragonsphere and Stargunner are both free. Once some ScummVM titles hit, I'm sure we'll see Beneath A Steel Sky, Lure of the Temptress and Teen Agent (also free) being available to Linux users as well.

Why you will see "Beneath A Steel Sky" on GOG?
Its opensource and you can get it on your Distribution for free. I have it over 8 years in my openSuSE resopitories.
Xodetaetl 24 Jul, 2014
Quoting: n30p1r4t3Valve and GOG are worlds apart in terms of missions.
Gog wants to compete with Steam. Read this article, especially the Coming to America section.

Quoting: n30p1r4t3But I can't understand why the only two distributions supported are exactly the same! (See First post)
Because they are the two most popular. And it's easy to support similar distros, you said it yourself.
Liam Dawe 24 Jul, 2014
I would say Ubuntu & Mint are in fact quite different. Given that they have completely different window managers alone can make games behave differently when full screen.

Anyway stop moaning about distributions people. Be happy!
Liam Dawe 24 Jul, 2014
Quoting: BdMdesigN
Quoting: Cheeseness
Quoting: sakurazukaNice thing is that one of Linux GOG is actually a free game so anyone can try it out.
There are two, actually! Dragonsphere and Stargunner are both free. Once some ScummVM titles hit, I'm sure we'll see Beneath A Steel Sky, Lure of the Temptress and Teen Agent (also free) being available to Linux users as well.
Why you will see "Beneath A Steel Sky" on GOG?
Its opensource and you can get it on your Distribution for free. I have it over 8 years in my openSuSE resopitories.
Have you ever thought that some people don't want to trawl through their package manager for games?
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