System76 have done something very interesting with Pop!_OS lately, a change that should give you better performance in games and get a more responsive desktop overall on Linux.
It comes in the form of their new System76 Scheduler, which they describe as:
Scheduling service which optimizes Linux's CPU scheduler and automatically assigns process priorities for improved desktop responsiveness. Low latency CPU scheduling will be activated automatically when on AC, and the default scheduling latencies set on battery. Processes are regularly sweeped and assigned process priorities based on configuration files. When combined with pop-shell, foreground processes and their sub-processes will be given higher process priority.
These changes result in a noticeable improvement in the experienced smoothness and performance of applications and games. The improved responsiveness of applications is most noticeable on older systems with budget hardware, whereas games will benefit from higher framerates and reduced jitter. This is because background applications and services will be given a smaller portion of leftover CPU budget after the active process has had the most time on the CPU.
Announcing the update that's rolled out on Twitter, System76 engineer Michael Murphy mentioned "There's a Pop!_OS update for pop-shell and system76-scheduler being released that will give CPU priority to the focused window and its sub-processes. Which means improved performance in games, and increased responsiveness in applications".
Our friends at Linux4Everyone asked a question in regards to gaming and how it actually improved it, to which Murphy replied: "QA team had the smoothest VR gaming experience with this, and it gave a boost to framerates. Just a natural side effect of having some finely tuned process priorities that give the focused window (such as a game) a higher priority than background applications and services".
Sounds like Pop!_OS is doing increasingly awesome work to make Linux a great desktop operating system for gamers and creatives.