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Space Mercs from Bearded Giant Games (the one with the Linux First Initiative) has some fresh footage out to show off a bunch of new features.

Space Mercs is an extreme arcade space combat game where the amount of projectiles and lasers on-screen is only toppled by the amount of stars in the universe! Will you be able to complete all the mercenary missions and become the best pilot in the Galaxy?

Speaking with the developer today, they told me they took on a load of feedback from the initial public demo to include things like: an actual targetting system, an overhaul to damage feedback, a damage direction indicator, a new ship, a cockpit view has been added with radar tracking in cockpit view too, objectives, you can see bullets coming your way, improved gamepad support and so on. Sounds like it's shaping up to be an impressive arcade shooter!

The developer sent over a new trailer today to show off some of the new stuff:

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That's not all, they're focusing on optimizing it for low-end devices too, with their development notebook (Intel HD Graphics 4000) able to run it at around 60FPS which is impressive.

We also have some fancy new screenshots to show off, which the developer sent over (click to enlarge):


You can wishlist and follow it on Steam, it will also be on itch.io but no proper game page for it up there yet and the old demo is being taken down as it doesn't represent the current state. It's currently scheduled to release on July 31st.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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20 comments
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Eike 13 June 2019 at 2:25 pm UTC
QuoteThis means that games will originally be released not with day 1 Linux support but only for Linux. Further ports to other platforms (Windows, Mac, Mobile) might happen in the future if enough interest is gathered.

So much looking forward for a thread asking for a Windows port. :-D (*)

(*) Yes, it's technically possible to upload a Linux only game on Steam.


Last edited by Eike at 13 June 2019 at 2:25 pm UTC
Ehvis 13 June 2019 at 2:28 pm UTC
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I remember there being a requirement to have at least a Windows version on Steam.

I did give the demo a quick try with my joystick, but it didn't quite feel right. Need to do some more testing and then give some feedback. It was impressive that it correctly recognised the buttons and axes of my flight stick.
Rooster 13 June 2019 at 2:39 pm UTC
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Wow, this will be an insta buy for me. I also just became a patreon.
Zapa 13 June 2019 at 2:50 pm UTC
RoosterWow, this will be an insta buy for me. I also just became a patreon.
Just saw the pledge and was wondering if it was someone from GoL! Jump onto our discord so we can assign you the patron roll and get access to the other games! Beta 6 (with the stuff in the trailer) will be available this weekend (I hope)!

EhvisI remember there being a requirement to have at least a Windows version on Steam.

I did give the demo a quick try with my joystick, but it didn't quite feel right. Need to do some more testing and then give some feedback. It was impressive that it correctly recognised the buttons and axes of my flight stick.

Joystick working really well is the wonderful work of the guys behind ReWired! It's a library I use for gamepad support and the props go to them! Unity's default system is horrible and I wrestled a ton with gamepad support before I discovered Rewired!

EikeSo much looking forward for a thread asking for a Windows port. :-D (*)

(*) Yes, it's technically possible to upload a Linux only game on Steam.

The game is developed on Linux and all Betas happen on Linux but I'll have to release it alongside Windows on steam or I'm financially toast . If my community and store grows I'll be the first to jump on Linux exclusive games.

On the bright side, ever since Beta 1 a ton of people asked for the windows version ! Here's a screen from when I released the (OUTDATED AS HELL) demo on itch (first comment at the top).

A few more asked on our Discord and on twitter! It feels amazing to be on the other side, even if only for a moment


Last edited by Zapa at 13 June 2019 at 2:51 pm UTC
mirv 13 June 2019 at 3:14 pm UTC
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It would be interesting, if you have time, to give an impression of development on GNU/Linux first and then porting to Windows, any difficulties you face, and what you feel is better this way around rather than Windows first. I think there was something before along similar lines? Anyway, regarding this game and the community responses, just for interest.

No idea which distribution platform I'll end up buying the game through (likely itch.io, but we'll see at release), but the demo convinced me that it'll be worth trying out. Sounds like the demo was well worth the feedback, which is nice to hear read.


Last edited by mirv at 13 June 2019 at 3:15 pm UTC
Zapa 13 June 2019 at 3:24 pm UTC
mirvIt would be interesting, if you have time, to give an impression of development on GNU/Linux first and then porting to Windows, any difficulties you face, and what you feel is better this way around rather than Windows first. I think there was something before along similar lines? Anyway, regarding this game and the community responses, just for interest.

I would love too do something like this. I was just now telling Liam on Discord about Meghan's Skate Bird tweet about the Linux demo being late due to having to rebuild the entire unity library (which takes hours) and how that never happened to me on Linux mostly because my middleware (like ReWired) is designed to work cross platform.

Off the top of my head, if someone would ask me for a good reason why to develop on Linux and I couldn't answer with the subjective answers I'd say: Because porting to other platforms won't be a hassle AND because if your middleware works well on Linux they are bound to work really well on Windows and Mac. Vs if it works on Windows it might not have a Linux version available.

I'll do a blog post about this as soon as I'm done with the Betas in the days leading up to launch. My 2cents? Ever since I started developing on Linux I've been moving a ton more faster and I would never trade it for anything!


mirvSounds like the demo was well worth the feedback, which is nice to hear read.
That was the point of it ! Also the Linux beta's are wonderful. Got a few people from the GoL community on Discord and really, most of the changes are due to them!


Last edited by Zapa at 13 June 2019 at 3:25 pm UTC
BrazilianGamer 13 June 2019 at 4:03 pm UTC
Wishlisted. Guys, I got a question. When you wishlist a game through your Android smartphone but your favorite platform is set to be Linux on the Steam client, will developers be notified that i am interested on that game and I use Linux? Will it count as a Linux user interest?
Alm888 13 June 2019 at 4:24 pm UTC
A Linux-developed game that is looking reasonably modern with honest 3D graphics (not a derivative of some open-sourced ancient engine like "ID Tech 2") and not a pixel-styled one? Color me impressed!

A pity, it does not have an itch.io page (yet); nothing to bookmark.
Eike 13 June 2019 at 4:44 pm UTC
ZapaThe game is developed on Linux and all Betas happen on Linux but I'll have to release it alongside Windows on steam or I'm financially toast .

I absolutely understand!

ZapaOn the bright side, ever since Beta 1 a ton of people asked for the windows version ! Here's a screen from when I released the (OUTDATED AS HELL) demo on itch (first comment at the top).

A few more asked on our Discord and on twitter! It feels amazing to be on the other side, even if only for a moment

:-D
Dedale 13 June 2019 at 4:44 pm UTC
I find it touching that it should work on lower end machines.

That said, this genre of game is overcrowded. I already have everspace and will buy helium rain next when i earn a little money. And later, this one because i like the genre. Anyway, very interesting. I hope you have a lot of fun developing it. I look forward to reading your blog.

Edit, there was already another Linux exclusive on steam: Don't be patchman. It has been ported to all sorts of platforms now.


Last edited by Dedale at 13 June 2019 at 4:47 pm UTC
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