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Half-Life: Alyx now available on Linux with Vulkan

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Just like Valve said to us they would do so, Half-Life: Alyx is now available on Linux using the Vulkan graphics API. This arrives as part of a big update that went out today which also brings in modding tools and Steam Workshop support, it's going to be very fun to see what the community comes up with for Half-Life: Alyx.

Half-Life: Alyx is Valve’s VR return to the Half-Life series. It’s the story of an impossible fight against a vicious alien race known as the Combine, set between the events of Half-Life and Half-Life 2. Playing as Alyx Vance, you are humanity’s only chance for survival.

For the modding side Valve released new versions of Hammer (the Source 2 level editor), a Material Editor, a Particle Editor, Source Filmmaker and more for people to tinker with. However, these tools are usually only available on Windows. Valve did say this is only the first Beta of the Alyx Workshop tools suite though, so we may see support for that too properly in future.

If you previously used the Proton compatibility layer to play Alyx, Valve said to follow these steps to reset it to the new Linux supported build:

  • Go in the Properties for Half-Life Alyx by right-clicking the game in your Steam Library
  • Check the "Force the use of a specific Steam Play compatibility tool" box
  • Uncheck the box, and the download will properly complete.

For the Linux version, Valve are recommending an AMD GPU with the Mesa RADV driver for "best results". It may seem like Valve are giving NVIDIA the cold shoulder here but on Linux NVIDIA are missing some big quality of life features for VR. It will work with an NVIDIA GPU but the experience might not be great.

Really fantastic to see such continued Linux support from Valve. It was only earlier today in our round-up article that we listed it as an interesting upcoming game!

You can find Half-Life: Alyx on Steam, it requires a VR headset.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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56 comments
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slaapliedje 17 May
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Quoting: lejimster
Quoting: slaapliedjeShit, while I don't really want to, I may have to switch to an AMD card, what's the latest/greatest at this point?

I'm using a Vega 56, very stable for quite some time. The Navi cards 5700XT is slightly better performing but the drivers support can be a bit more touchy, although it's always improving. I think big Navi is on it's way in the next few months, so maybe wait for that if you really want a high end AMD card.
Thanks, that is very likely what I will do. I don't really feel like upgrading from the 2080 RTX for one game...
Quoting: PatolaDo you have the link to your guide, please? I cannot even see your posts because you marked your profile as private. I have the Valve Index with an NVIDIA RTX 2070 SUPER.

Hey there. Weird, thought it was set to public. Set to public now. Anyways, here's the link if you haven't found it: https://www.gamingonlinux.com/forum/topic/4251
Sil_el_mot 20 May
Quoting: lejimster
Quoting: slaapliedjeShit, while I don't really want to, I may have to switch to an AMD card, what's the latest/greatest at this point?

I'm using a Vega 56, very stable for quite some time. The Navi cards 5700XT is slightly better performing but the drivers support can be a bit more touchy, although it's always improving. I think big Navi is on it's way in the next few months, so maybe wait for that if you really want a high end AMD card.

Thanks for this insight.
i have an 1080 ti, from comparisons the 5700xt should be slightly faster and better but i dont feel like changing now, as long as the drivers are not yet ready to play without a lot of tinkering.
thats why i love nvidia, you have zero tinkering.
tuubi 20 May
Quoting: Sil_el_moti have an 1080 ti, from comparisons the 5700xt should be slightly faster and better but i dont feel like changing now, as long as the drivers are not yet ready to play without a lot of tinkering.
thats why i love nvidia, you have zero tinkering.
At this point, if you make sure your kernel is somewhat up to date and your Mesa is recent enough, then that's the extent of tinkering required. At least it was for me. I enabled a PPA for Mesa and occasionally grab the latest stable mainline kernel. For you, on Arch, things should be even simpler. I think people making use of multiple Display Ports still had some power management related issues with Navi hardware just a while back, but my single screen couch gaming setup has been running smoothly since I upgraded late last year.

In any case, I agree with you that going from a 1080 TI to a 5700 XT isn't likely to be a meaningful upgrade if you don't have a pressing need to switch. Maybe the next generation is worth it though.
drlamb 20 May
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Quoting: Sil_el_motthats why i love nvidia, you have zero tinkering.

This is objectively false depending on what you're trying to do and your distribution.
Sil_el_mot 22 May
Quoting: drlamb
Quoting: Sil_el_motthats why i love nvidia, you have zero tinkering.

This is objectively false depending on what you're trying to do and your distribution.

ok. sure. it always depends, but for me i had only once big pain with nvidia, when drivers on arch were not working right and this update just happened while i was installing arch from ground up and thought it was my fault that i only got a black screen.
since then i had nothing to do with settings or setup-hazzle with the nvidia. but once again, i am just a gaming and a bit python-programming guy... not anything deep in the wonderful things i could maybe achive with my system
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