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Darwinia from Introversion Software gets a big compatibility upgrade

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Darwinia, a classic from Introversion Software (original devs of Prison Architect) released originally in 2005 just got upgraded to keep it running nice on modern platforms. Not many developers go back to update their classics like this, nice to see from Introversion!

Darwinia offers up full Native Linux support and there's currently no Steam Deck rating for it.

Major Changes:

  • Added a native OpenGL ES rendering backend.
  • Fixed a crash triggered by entering/leaving levels several times.
  • Fixed a bug where radar dishes would forget how to rotate if the renderer was restarted (e.g. if the Screen settings were changed while in a level).
  • Fixed a bug where cutscenes did not correctly preserve the world state, and could cause some buildings to change team ownership. (e.g. on Temple, the Spam cubes could be assigned the wrong team and be attacked by the red Darwinians)
  • Now supports a new NVIDIA driver feature, the DXGI present path for Vulkan/OpenGL. Should greatly improve frame smoothness and eliminate stutters.
  • Reduced stutter caused by one-off long frames.
  • Reworked some of the water avoidance behavior. There were some bugs in how the water avoidance decisions were made, which caused Darwinians to sometimes become confused and just stand still after leaving water.
  • When Darwinians or Squads are in water, instead of dying immediately after 10 consecutive seconds, they start to take damage over time.
  • Fixed a bug where Darwinians would clip through the landscape when coming out of water, and then suddenly pop up above ground after several seconds.
  • Fixed the floating-on-water animation to update every frame instead of every game tick.
  • Worked around a bug in NVIDIA drivers older than 530, which caused some rendering glitches with VK_EXT_graphics_pipeline_library.
  • Fixed some cases where AMD FSR 1.0 shaders would not compile correctly when targeting AMD GPUs.

Minor changes:

  • Introduced timed expiration for cached pipelines and shaders.
  • Fixed a failure to initialize OpenGL core renderer on Zink.
  • Fixed a bug in the mouse cursor render using 16-bit float RGBA framebuffers.
  • Fixed targeting reticles being shown for units behind the camera.
  • Minimized clipping of game cursor below the landscape.
  • Fixed input handling bugs when running at very low framerates.
  • Many code cleanups to modernize the code base a bit.
  • Tuned thread priorities for audio and worker threads.
  • Improved performance of MiniAudio mixing.
  • Several minor performance improvements.
  • Updated contributing libraries (MoltenVK, ANGLE, SDL, MiniAudio, etc)

Available in the Introversion Classics pack on Humble Store, GOG and Steam.

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. Find me on Mastodon.
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4 comments

StalePopcorn Aug 28, 2023
Nice!
scaine Aug 28, 2023
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This was one of the first games that really blew my mind that I was playing it on Linux. Not just novelty either - it's actually superb fun, and I'm not even particularly into RTS style games.

The other big game was Revenge of the Titans, by PuppyGames, which reminds me that they have a big release coming up, Battledroid, which I've not heard a peep about in ages!! It was last covered on GOL back in January 2020. Although that was followed up a few months later by this article which covers how Basingstoke financially crippled them.

Hopefully it's still baking. An MMO is a bit of a step away from their usual shooters.
omer666 Aug 28, 2023
I'm a fan of Introversion Software, bought their full shareware catalogue back in the day (way before Steam on Linux.) Uplink more particularly holds a special place in my heart, and IMHO has never been dethroned as the best hacking videogame ever.


Last edited by omer666 on 28 August 2023 at 6:44 pm UTC
Ananace Aug 28, 2023
Quoting: omer666I'm a fan of Introversion Software, bought their full shareware catalogue back in the day (way before Steam on Linux.) Uplink more particularly holds a special place in my heart, and IMHO has never been dethroned as the best hacking videogame ever.

Uplink is an absolutely amazing game. Absolutely love some of its more joke-y features too, like the code card entry for "account creation", the wargames server, or even the network-attached monitor support.
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