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Bioshock Infinite Early Linux Port Report

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Now that Bioshock Infinite has been released for Linux, and we have taken a little time with it, we can release some thought patterns on it.

Note: As with all first-looks these are my personal opinions, and your mileage may/will vary. Like with all of our first-looks and reviews they are from the point of view of the person testing, which is me in this case. Your testing may be different, but this will hopefully give you something to go by.

This was tested on Ubuntu Linux MATE 64bit (latest) with the Nvidia 970 graphics card and 16GB RAM.

Warning: You need the proprietary drivers, it won’t currently run on open source graphics. You have your warning.

You will need at least these driver versions:
Nvidia: 340.65
AMD: fglrx 14.12 (Currently only Radeon 7xxx and greater series cards are supported)

There still seems to be no official announcement of it on their Steam page, so it’s some form of “soft launch” I imagine while they see how it is received.

This is an early look at the game, but still clocking in well over an hours worth of solid testing.

Performance, Actually quite amazing
Performance wise it's actually quite solid. I was surprised at how smooth everything was, and it has put VP up in my books a lot. We always place credit where it is due, and the porting this time around was fantastic. The main issues with TW2 were the terrible performance of the initial port, and the poor communication at the start, so it seems they have worked some magic here.

Testing it initially on High, at 1080p has been giving me a very smooth game, and some solid framerates.

Alt+tab works as expected, and I’m really pleased with that result, as it infuriates me when I can’t do such a “simple” thing!

When reaching the actual main city, the FPS did go down a fair bit, but we are still talking constantly well over 100 FPS on High settings.

I decided to crank it up to Very High, and I have only seen it fall below 90 FPS when loading a new area, so I think that’s a really fantastic job that has been done.
There are some stuttering patterns that last maybe 1-2 seconds when a new area is loaded, but they quickly vanish. They are noticeable, but considering it happens only when loading a whole new area, I deem that acceptable.

I did notice one lighting bug, it pops between light and dark textures a few times on certain buildings and decorative items, so hopefully that will be easy to fix. It doesn't happen often, but it does happen.

The game is far more stable than Dying Light has been for me, which often crashes to the desktop 3-4 times in an hour. Bioshock has been running the whole time since I had it downloaded, and not a single crash.

The Game
It's really nice to be able to enjoy the game, especially as I’ve never played it before and the graphics are really quite good as well.

The story seems pretty interesting, and the world is vibrant and full of people chatting away for you to listen in on. I have literally no idea what is going on, but it’s keeping me very interested to find out more.

A major dislike about the game is the checkpoint save system, I never like checkpoint only saves, why do games not allow us to fill our massive hard drives with saved games? I like to pick and choose where I start and stop! That’s about my only dislike mind you.

As you progress further into the game, you will note some parts get a bit grim. Picking up a fire “Vigor” will show your fingers melting away which is both horrible and awesome at the same time.

The jumping mechanic from hook to hook was pretty fun too, and I had no idea this game had elements like that in it. While above on a hook you can do a special strike on enemy soldiers too, and that was awesome to fly down and pulverise them.

Final Verdict: The port is pretty solid, so I’m surprisingly happy with it. I still prefer native ports personally, as Virtual Programming will never be able to fix an issues in the game, only their wrapper technology.

Check out BioShock Infinite on Steam now.

Update, I did a video on it to show you how it performs for me, this is with vsync on, as any higher than 60FPS made SSR freak out when recording:
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72 comments
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PopTart 17 March 2015 at 9:48 pm UTC
Fantastic! When you mentioned bumping the settings up to very high I was expecting you to say the FPS dropped to around 20-30. Phew.
Thanks for the heads up.
drmoth 17 March 2015 at 9:52 pm UTC
After all the shitty ports....what a relief!
calexil 17 March 2015 at 9:56 pm UTC
Now we just need some test results for fglrx.
pete910 17 March 2015 at 10:00 pm UTC
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Well tried it on mine, was quite surprised tbh. Not brilliant mind

Set on 1440p All max, 30-60 . odd drop to 20 on transition of cut scenes. but seem fine/smooth. Did try with the vsync off but jumped all over from 30 to 120 depending where I looked.

290x 14.12
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pete910 17 March 2015 at 10:01 pm UTC
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calexilNow we just need some test results for fglrx.

I'll give it a go @ 1080p later and report
TeKiLa 17 March 2015 at 10:18 pm UTC
I'm glad VP is working great ! The developpers seemed really nicer on the issue tracker on github and they did a fantastic job putting Witcher 2 where it should have been at start.

My guess is that TW2 was one of their first gaming port on linux and their virtualization wasn't up to par. They seemed to have fixed that.
TheReaperUK 17 March 2015 at 10:23 pm UTC
Other way around for me, Bioshock Infinite crashed twice in about 2 hours, Dying Light has never crashed for me, but i did notice after killing bioshock with task manager (After first freeze up) then going back to test again the 2 to 5 second freeze's don't happen now, or so far untill it crashed again.
leillo1975 17 March 2015 at 10:24 pm UTC
Thanks for this early review. This is the next game that I will buy. I had no hopes in a VP wrapped port
Keyrock 17 March 2015 at 10:31 pm UTC
Sweet. Now I just wait for a sale.

/rubs hands together
kalin 17 March 2015 at 10:35 pm UTC
TheReaperUKOther way around for me, Bioshock Infinite crashed twice in about 2 hours, Dying Light has never crashed for me, but i did notice after killing bioshock with task manager (After first freeze up) then going back to test again the 2 to 5 second freeze's don't happen now, or so far untill it crashed again.
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