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The Linux GOTY award is now over, here are the results!

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It was a massive year for Linux gaming, so here's a look at who won and a big congratulations to all who did!

Note: These are just the top charts, there were plenty more entries in each category.

Favourite open source game 0 A.D. 730 A.D.OpenTTD 49OpenTTDSuperTuxKart 48SuperTuxKartBattle for Wesnoth 43Battle for WesnothXonotic 24XonoticNethack 19NethackThe Dark Mod 16The Dark ModMinetest 15MinetestFreeciv 12FreecivDungeon Crawl Stone Soup 9Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup 0 A.D. 73OpenTTD 49SuperTuxKart 48Battle for Wesnoth 43Xonotic 24Nethack 19The Dark Mod 16Minetest 15Freeciv 12Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup 9 7349484324191615129 01530456075 Total Votes

I wasn't honestly sure who was going to win this, as there's some pretty hot competition there! Well done to 0 A.D. who do put in a lot of effort to make a professional project.

Best graphics for a game released in 2016 Deus Ex: Mankind Divided 120Deus Ex: Mankind DividedMad Max 50Mad MaxTomb Raider 49Tomb RaiderDying Light: The Following 37Dying Light: The FollowingFirewatch 23FirewatchXCOM 2 16XCOM 2Rocket League 14Rocket LeagueHyper Light Drifter 13Hyper Light DrifterStellaris 11StellarisShadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun 11Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun Deus Ex: Mankind Divided 120Mad Max 50Tomb Raider 49Dying Light: The Following 37Firewatch 23XCOM 2 16Rocket League 14Hyper Light Drifter 13Stellaris 11Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun 11 120504937231614131111 024487296120 Total Votes

The lead Deus Ex: Mankind Divided had is quite amazing, but not surprising. It does look absolutely gorgeous and I am personally a big fan of it!

Best story for a game released in 2016 Life is Strange 114Life is StrangeFirewatch 45FirewatchTomb Raider 37Tomb RaiderTyranny 30TyrannyUndertale 30UndertaleDeus Ex: Mankind Divided 21Deus Ex: Mankind DividedDay of the Tentacle 19Day of the TentacleOxenfree 14OxenfreeHyper Light Drifter 7Hyper Light DrifterVA-11 Hall-A 5VA-11 Hall-A Life is Strange 114Firewatch 45Tomb Raider 37Tyranny 30Undertale 30Deus Ex: Mankind Divided 21Day of the Tentacle 19Oxenfree 14Hyper Light Drifter 7VA-11 Hall-A 5 1144537303021191475 023466992115 Total Votes

Another Feral Interactive ported title here and again not very surprising. I completed it during a livestream and the overall story was pretty amazing. Even if the end was a little on the odd side.

Most promising Early Access game in 2016 Black Mesa 55Black MesaFactorio 41FactorioRimworld 34RimworldThe Long Dark 33The Long DarkSlime Rancher 24Slime RancherBallistic Overkill 23Ballistic OverkillDistance 22DistanceParkitect 20Parkitect7 Days to Die 177 Days to DieRust 10Rust Black Mesa 55Factorio 41Rimworld 34The Long Dark 33Slime Rancher 24Ballistic Overkill 23Distance 22Parkitect 207 Days to Die 17Rust 10 55413433242322201710 01122334455 Total Votes

This one I am genuinely surprised by, as I honestly thought it would turn out completely differently. I was fully expecting one of the survival games to take the crown, but I'm pleasantly surprised by the results here. Massive competition in this category, so well done to all who made the top!

Best update released in 2016 Dota 2 35Dota 2SuperTuxKart 33SuperTuxKartStellaris 28StellarisKerbal Space Program 24Kerbal Space ProgramFactorio 21FactorioTerraria 19TerrariaStardew Valley 18Stardew ValleyDreamfall Chapters 17Dreamfall ChaptersArma 3 16Arma 3Planetary Annihilation: TITANS 15Planetary Annihilation: TITANS Dota 2 35SuperTuxKart 33Stellaris 28Kerbal Space Program 24Factorio 21Terraria 19Stardew Valley 18Dreamfall Chapters 17Arma 3 16Planetary Annihilation: TITANS 15 35332824211918171615 0714212835 Total Votes

When it comes to free games and their updates, it's pretty hard to compete against something from Valve like Dota 2 which had a massive overhaul. I'm still scared to boot the game up and waste an entire day yelling at people, or being yelled at.

Best free game released in 2016 Life Is Strange - Episode 1 181Life Is Strange - Episode 1Warthunder 46WarthunderFaeria 24FaeriaTransmissions: Element 120 19Transmissions: Element 120Raft 13RaftHunger Dungeon 5Hunger DungeonEmpires 3EmpiresSisyphus Reborn 1Sisyphus Reborn Life Is Strange - Episode 1 181Warthunder 46Faeria 24Transmissions: Element 120 19Raft 13Hunger Dungeon 5Empires 3Sisyphus Reborn 1 18146241913531 03774111148185 Total Votes

Some people may feel this is a little unfair, but Life is Strange episode one is a free game and it is very good, even if it is but a taster of what's to come in later episodes.

Most anticipated game for 2017 Civilization VI 94Civilization VIStar Citizen 42Star CitizenYooka-Laylee 39Yooka-LayleeTorment: Tides of Numenera 38Torment: Tides of NumeneraShadow Warrior 2 34Shadow Warrior 2Homefront: The Revolution 13Homefront: The RevolutionStreet Fighter V 12Street Fighter VEvent[0] 11Event[0]Owlboy 10OwlboyAstroneer 10Astroneer Civilization VI 94Star Citizen 42Yooka-Laylee 39Torment: Tides of Numenera 38Shadow Warrior 2 34Homefront: The Revolution 13Street Fighter V 12Event[0] 11Owlboy 10Astroneer 10 94423938341312111010 01938577695 Total Votes

It looks like the most anticipated game will arrive soon!

Best version quality & performance released in 2016 Rocket League 67Rocket LeagueMad Max 53Mad MaxLife is Strange 48Life is StrangeStellaris 28StellarisFactorio 19FactorioShadow Tactics 18Shadow TacticsTotal War: WARHAMMER 18Total War: WARHAMMERTyranny 16TyrannyBallistic Overkill 14Ballistic OverkillSteamWorld Heist 12SteamWorld Heist Rocket League 67Mad Max 53Life is Strange 48Stellaris 28Factorio 19Shadow Tactics 18Total War: WARHAMMER 18Tyranny 16Ballistic Overkill 14SteamWorld Heist 12 67534828191818161412 01428425670 Total Votes

I'm surprised here, since the game was released in a rather unstable state and still to this day has a number of issues. Not my personal choice for the winner, but the people have spoken!

Best audio of a game released in 2016 Life is Strange 69Life is StrangeFirewatch 39FirewatchStellaris 34StellarisUndertale 28UndertaleMad Max 26Mad MaxStardew Valley 22Stardew ValleyDarkest Dungeon 21Darkest DungeonHyper Light Drifter 15Hyper Light DrifterStarbound 12StarboundDevil Daggers 9Devil Daggers Life is Strange 69Firewatch 39Stellaris 34Undertale 28Mad Max 26Stardew Valley 22Darkest Dungeon 21Hyper Light Drifter 15Starbound 12Devil Daggers 9 6939342826222115129 01428425670 Total Votes

I absolutely love the mellow tunes in Life is Strange and I've been guilty of sticking the soundtrack on myself for some background noise, really great stuff.

Favourite FOSS project Wine 87WineMESA 70MESAOpenMW 35OpenMWOBS Studio 31OBS StudioGodot Engine 26Godot EngineDolphin Emulator 25Dolphin EmulatorPlay on Linux 22Play on LinuxScummVM 13ScummVMOpenRA 11OpenRARetroArch 10RetroArch Wine 87MESA 70OpenMW 35OBS Studio 31Godot Engine 26Dolphin Emulator 25Play on Linux 22ScummVM 13OpenRA 11RetroArch 10 87703531262522131110 01836547290 Total Votes

Ever the hot topic of discussion. Talk of Wine always heats up our comments sections when it's mentioned. You have to marvel at it though, as it's really quite amazing. It's the project that enabled me to stay on Linux as much as possible in my early days and kept me going. Now I run this website, so it's my own personal choice too.

Overall best Linux game released in 2016 Rocket League 46Rocket LeagueXCOM 2 43XCOM 2Life is Strange 43Life is StrangeMad Max 38Mad MaxTomb Raider 35Tomb RaiderStellaris 26StellarisMankind Divided 25Mankind DividedStardew Valley 17Stardew ValleyShadow Tactics 11Shadow TacticsFirewatch 10Firewatch Rocket League 46XCOM 2 43Life is Strange 43Mad Max 38Tomb Raider 35Stellaris 26Mankind Divided 25Stardew Valley 17Shadow Tactics 11Firewatch 10 46434338352625171110 01020304050 Total Votes

Quite easily my most played released on Linux from last year. I have over 49 hours in Rocket League now, so I won't even try to debate this one. A fantastic game and seriously fun to play with friends and the wider community!

Best DLC release in 2016 Dying Light - The Following 46Dying Light - The FollowingNatural Disasters 42Natural DisastersThe White March Part II 39The White March Part IIXCOM 2 - Shen's Last Gift 28XCOM 2 - Shen's Last GiftStellaris: Leviathans 23Stellaris: LeviathansArma 3 Apex 19Arma 3 ApexVive La France! 15Vive La France!Sunless Sea: Zubmariner 11Sunless Sea: ZubmarinerEuropa Universalis IV: Rights of Man 10Europa Universalis IV: Rights of ManCall of the Beastmen 8Call of the Beastmen Dying Light - The Following 46Natural Disasters 42The White March Part II 39XCOM 2 - Shen's Last Gift 28Stellaris: Leviathans 23Arma 3 Apex 19Vive La France! 15Sunless Sea: Zubmariner 11Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man 10Call of the Beastmen 8 4642392823191511108 01020304050 Total Votes

Okay, I won't argue against this one. I'm slowly making my way through The Following myself and I'm finding it to be truly fun. Lots of zombie smashing, an buggy that has a bunch of upgrade options and plenty of open-world to explore. Loving it myself!

Biggest surprise Linux release of 2016 Mankind Divided 154Mankind DividedMad Max 43Mad MaxWarhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II 31Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War IIRocket League 31Rocket LeagueLife is Strange 31Life is StrangeTomb Raider 29Tomb RaiderTotal War: WARHAMMER 18Total War: WARHAMMERShadow Tactics 15Shadow TacticsOverlord 15OverlordUndertale 10Undertale Mankind Divided 154Mad Max 43Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II 31Rocket League 31Life is Strange 31Tomb Raider 29Total War: WARHAMMER 18Shadow Tactics 15Overlord 15Undertale 10 154433131312918151510 0316293124155 Total Votes

Speaks for itself. I hope to see more surprises this year.

Favourite Linux game porter of 2016 Feral Interactive 297Feral InteractiveAspyr Media 31Aspyr MediaEthan Lee 22Ethan LeeVirtual Programming 12Virtual ProgrammingRyan Gordon (Icculus) 12Ryan Gordon (Icculus)Cheeseness 7CheesenessKnockout Games 3Knockout GamesTimothee Besset (TTimo) 2Timothee Besset (TTimo) Feral Interactive 297Aspyr Media 31Ethan Lee 22Virtual Programming 12Ryan Gordon (Icculus) 12Cheeseness 7Knockout Games 3Timothee Besset (TTimo) 2 29731221212732 060120180240300 Total Votes

Not really surprising is it? The amount of games Feral Interactive have ported to Linux is quite amazing. They are already teasing their next release too, so 2017 is going to be fun.

Come chat in the comments about how last year went and how you think this year will go!
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Ehvis 30 January 2017 at 11:30 am UTC
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It's interesting that there are at least two games in the "most anticipated for 2017" category for which there is absolutely no indication that they will come this year (or at all).

No huge surprises in the result. Although, while I expected Feral to win the favourite porter, the margin is quite a bit bigger than I expected. I think the most important reason for them to win is not the number of releases, but their community involvement.
cRaZy-bisCuiT 30 January 2017 at 11:36 am UTC
Interesting to skim through the results. Still I'm not to happy with Feral Interactive. They do make perfect quality ports, there's no doubt about it. I do appreciate that as well! Still they do split the Linux and MacOS community by porting games that doesn't have a cross-platform multiplayer. It would be better not to have ported Warhammer at all, if there's no chance to get Multiplayer working. There are ~400-500 people playing the game on Windows at weekends. Most of the time there's not a single Linux game being hosted. We don't even have to talk about quickmatch ranked matches....


Last edited by cRaZy-bisCuiT at 30 January 2017 at 11:37 am UTC
jith_feral 30 January 2017 at 11:58 am UTC
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cRaZy-bisCuiTInteresting to skim through the results. Still I'm not to happy with Feral Interactive. They do make perfect quality ports, there's no doubt about it. I do appreciate that as well! Still they do split the Linux and MacOS community by porting games that doesn't have a cross-platform multiplayer. It would be better not to have ported Warhammer at all, if there's no chance to get Multiplayer working. There are ~400-500 people playing the game on Windows at weekends. Most of the time there's not a single Linux game being hosted. We don't even have to talk about quickmatch ranked matches....

We try to bring cross-platform multiplayer to our games, but sometimes this just isn't possible due to operating system differences.

Total War: WARHAMMER isn't out for Mac yet, but when it is, Linux gamers will be able to play with those on Mac.

If you're looking for people to play with, check out the Mac & Linux multiplayer group on Steam.
Zlopez 30 January 2017 at 12:29 pm UTC
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I was surprised to see, that Star Citizen will come to Linux. I didn't knew that.

I also want to thanks to Feral Interactive for doing really awesome job. Their 1st place is well deserved.
Corben 30 January 2017 at 12:36 pm UTC
For the poll next year, I would like to be able to check all porters as favorite Linux game porters
abelthorne 30 January 2017 at 1:04 pm UTC
I'm a bit surprised to see Faeria in the best free games released in 2016, as it's technically still in early access and not even officially on Linux, though it works pretty well. The game is supposed to have its official release in march (I guess it'll get a Linux/SteamOS icon then).
boltronics 30 January 2017 at 1:36 pm UTC
Feral Interactive's done well this year and I agree that much of our love for them is related to their positive interactions with the community. Having said that, I personally feel that some of their releases could use a bit more testing at times (I'm still suffering the 0byte DoW2 download bug every time I open Steam). More importantly, I'm often put off by the sheer number of titles they release that claim to only work on Nvidia, and the (usually completely pointless) warnings that have to be clicked past on many of their games when running on AMD drivers - drivers that more often than not work flawlessly. It detracts from the overall experience. Do they really have to show them every. single. time?

A stable Mesa release should appear this year with OpenGL shader caching, at which point I sincerely hope Feral switches off all such warnings and updates their game requirement pages. I'll be watching to see if this happens and factoring Feral's reaction (or lack thereof) to such releases when voting on Favourite Linux game porter of 2017.

However 2017 should be a great year. Already with Mesa 17.0.0-rc2 my Fury X is running far more stable than ever before. I anticipate Wine will have a large number of D3D11 titles running well, and AMD cards should have almost all of the features games want from free software drivers including FreeSync, Audio over HDMI/DP and a more competitive (perhaps even superior?) Vulkan implementation by way of RADV. Speaking of Vulkan, I eagerly look forward to games making use of multiple GPUs, and hope to see at least a couple of titles that make full use of available hardware. We already know Feral Interactive is set to release Vulkan ports in the near future.

Things that I don't expect will happen in 2017? Well, I'm not holding my breath on AMD living up to their promises about freeing up source code for their proprietary Vulkan implementation (not that it seems we need it at this point). We probably won't see GoG release GNU/Linux builds of their Galaxy client, which will surely eventually be cancelled and turn into vaporware when they work up the guts to make the announcement. I can't see anybody using VR on GNU/Linux with free software drivers this year, at least not as a supported experience by game developers. I doubt Telltale are going to start releasing GNU/Linux ports this year either, despite previously expressing interest.

Things I'm on the fence about? The LEDs on my Fury X GPUs still don't work since AMD replaced Catalyst (fglrx) with AMDGPU Pro. I don't understand how AMD can push people with their most expensive consumer GPUs through an "upgrade" path that drops such an obvious feature. I'd like to think AMD will sort this issue out at some point this year, but I've yet to see any indication AMD are interested in fixing it. It will certainly make me think twice about purchasing high-end cards from them in future unless the support is already 100%.

I'd love to see Bethesda, Ubisoft or EA test the waters with a GNU/Linux release or two this year. To be fair, Ubisoft already did in late 2015 with Grow Home, but then for 2016 decided not to bother porting the sequel Grow Up (yet, at least). Too bad they didn't try porting a more well known title, and too bad they released the GNU/Linux port so long after Windows, so not exactly a fair test.

Bethesda is in the best position to start adding GNU/Linux ports. Surely Bethesda took note of how much interest there was in running Doom under Wine - many months after the game was released, no less. Further, unlike EA (with Origin) and Ubisoft (with Uplay), Bethesda don't have a store client. That's one big road block they don't have to contend with. Lastly, Bethesda is the most likely of the three to release a Vulkan-only game, which presumably means less QA work for them to deal with. If they released a game with GNU/Linux support this year, I wouldn't be too surprised (but would be very happy).

Despite my general pessimism, it still looks like 2017 has quite a lot going for it.
dubigrasu 30 January 2017 at 1:52 pm UTC
Equally surprised and disappointed that Valley isn't anywhere among the winners.
Probably for most people the game went well bellow the radar, although it was mentioned here few times.
Do yourself a favor and try it, is been a while since I was so surprised by a game.
Xpander 30 January 2017 at 1:56 pm UTC
i still can't understand how is War Thunder best free game released in 2016? wasnt it released for linux back in 2014 even?


Also i don't get the Civ VI hype, but thats me, i never got into the Civ V.

Deus Ex indeed has really good graphics but sadly its pretty much unplayable on my setup. i cant tolerate those few places where it drops down to 25FPS.. no matter what graphics settings enabled.
Mountain Man 30 January 2017 at 1:58 pm UTC
cRaZy-bisCuiTIt would be better not to have ported Warhammer at all, if there's no chance to get Multiplayer working.
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