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How did you get into Linux gaming?
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Pengling Aug 6, 2022
Just curious, here.

For me, I had almost a decade of interest in retro video game emulation by the time that I switched to Linux, and the first thing that I ever did (not because I needed to, but just because I could and I wanted to learn how) was to compile an emulator from source-code, and I started gaming on Linux this way; Retro-gaming remains a fixture for me even today. This was also influenced by my preference for portable devices making me mostly a console person in the past, so native PC-gaming/Steam/etc. weren't really on my radar back then.

Considering how Raspberry Pi retro builds have become a widespread first exposure to Linux, I guess that a number of people out there might also have something similar as their origin-point with Linux gaming (though I don't know how many of them can be found here on GOL) - though probably without compiling stuff just-because.

How did everyone else get into this?
Zlopez Aug 6, 2022
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For me it was just a matter of not rebooting to Windows every time I want to play something. I did most of the other things on Linux, so one day I just decided to remove the Windows entirely and stick up with Linux. I didn't regret my decision till then. :-)
BlackBloodRum Aug 6, 2022
I've been using Linux exclusively (no windows on my computers at all) for over 15 years as such way way way back in time when I was once young, I mostly used to play games on consoles such as PS1/PS2 etc.

But some games I was able to get to run on Linux using wine, but it was far and few between. But naturally as Valve pushed gaming further on Linux and consoles got worse and unreliable I dropped console gaming altogether and went full-on Linux gamer as wine/proton got better and better.

Honestly for me using Windows is annoying and almost always makes me want to throw the computer out of a window as it is confusing, doesn't do what it is supposed to do and mostly just felt slow with no way to quickly run a few commands to get a job done. I found this out recently when I had to use a windows computer for the first time in 15 years, suffice to say I'm happy Linux is staying right where it is on my computer with no windows in sight.
Grogan Aug 6, 2022
My first game for Linux was Unreal Tournament 2003, but I couldn't run it because of that S3 texture compression (they called it something else back then, DXT or something like that?). Back then you had to recompile mesa against that library (at some point later they dlopen'd it). I procrastinated and finally did that and got it working, just in time for UT2004 that didn't require it :-)

Quake 4 was really good in 2005, too.

I also played open source games like Cube and then Sauerbraten, and things like Alien Arena.

In 2007 I bought Unreal Tournament 3, thinking there was going to be a Linux port. I was naively expecting it to be on the install media. So I installed Windows so I could play my game. When that never came, I ended up buying more games for Windows (some of my forum mates played Call of Duty) and pretty much gave up on gaming on Linux. I still had my old UT2004 game* and open source games but I booted to Windows for anything else.

(* In fact I still have the same directory from the original Loki installer copied to new computers over the years! Icculus added x86_64 binaries in a patch and I just had to drop in some compatible libraries, like a 64 bit UT2004 runs on my custom "from scratch" system to this day.)

I revisited this around 2018 when Steam put out a Linux client. I blasted on a Kubuntu install to give it the environment it wanted. At least I could play the Half Life 2 games and stuff. Then Proton came out and I started playing with things like Wolfenstein New Colossus and successfully getting other things to work too. When I got tired of eating dog food, I customized a Manjaro setup for my purposes.

Now? I don't even have a Windows install. There isn't much that I care about, that I can't get to work acceptably on Linux.
CatKiller Aug 6, 2022
For me, it was really straightforward: I've always been a gamer. I've been playing games every day for the past 35 years or so.

When I first started using Linux in 2004-2005, fairly quickly I found myself seeing which of the games I already had would work in Linux, whether natively or with things like Wine, DosBox and ScummVM. Pretty soon I was doing all my gaming in Linux and only booting into Windows for Thunderbird and Firefox, which seemed... wrong. So I migrated my emails & bookmarks to Linux and ditched Windows.

I got a PS3 in 2009-ish, and my new purchases were there, although I was still doing some gaming on Linux at that point. Then Humble started releasing Linux games, so I started buying those, and Steam arrived on Linux in 2013 (and I already had a Steam account from Portal 2 co-op on the PS3) which made it easier still.
dvd Aug 6, 2022
I've been almost exclusively using linux for the last 12-15 years, only used windows on my computer to play TES early on, and completely ditched it outside of mandatory work time since minecraft sucked me in for 2-3 years. I've been playing games a lot longer than that though, the first games i remember playing on a computer were Raptor, Prince of persia and Lotus. My first multiplayer game was SA:MP which i still remember fondly and wish was released along with SA on linux.

Using linux mainly came from curiosity and later with convenience running latex and a bunch of software i regurarly had to use for school. At that point it already felt just as comfortable and a lot more feature packed than Windows.

I have to use windows again at work and it drives me mad. It's not intuitive at all, it's helpers and messages are useless, and comes with the worst stuff preinstalled. I have a hard time navigating these new windows now.

Last edited by dvd on 6 August 2022 at 8:28 pm UTC
Dennis_Payne Aug 6, 2022
Computers are a means of programming and playing games. I went directly from DOS to Linux. I didn't have any interest in Windows. I do play a lot of games on consoles. My PC generally wasn't as powerful as latest console. That has been changing but even on Linux I prefer to use a controller to play games.
denyasis Aug 6, 2022
Started with Neverwinter Nights in 2001. My father used Linux at work for their servers, so it wasn't foreign to me. Figured I'd try it. It sucked compared to the windows version.

Still tinkered with Linux and Open source software over the following years, mostly because I couldn't afford proprietary stuff, like Office. Did all my college work on open office on Windows 98 and XP. Built my, still running, debian file server in 2008 and started dual booting cause I couldn't afford next Windows version (7?) Gamed on both for a while before switching all the way to Linux around 2009 (when I got my heavily modified Morrowind to work in Wine)

I'm prolly in the minority, but I'm not a Windows hater. Came to Linux for the price and stayed cause I liked the OS. Windows was good for what it does. Still does some stuff better than Linux.
Kuduzkehpan Aug 6, 2022
İts all about freedom and hate of capitalism monopoly for me when i find my friends are using Knoppix i just want to check.
it was amazing then i found some linux native games as tuxracer or so then some bunch of other native demos. or Full games.
When i meet wine it was miracle for me on linux then its Valve Steam and you know rest. But still we are not the point where we are really about to dominate desktop systems.
we need native games optimised exlusively for Linux games.
StoneColdSpider Aug 6, 2022
For me it was RetroPie (If you count that as using Linux) on the Raspberry Pi back in late 2016 after Nintendo made the NES mini avliable to only youtubers and scalpers (I know thats not strickly true but it damn well felt like it)

So I did some research and bought a Raspberry Pi 3B and installed RetroPie on it and dumped a bunch of roms on it ands away I went.... Upgraded to a 3B+ after that was released......

2 months ago I ditched Windows and installed EndeavourOS with KDE Plasma and havnt looked back.....

I dont use the Pi much anymore as I use RetroArch for most of my emulation needs these days on my PC......
GustyGhost Aug 7, 2022
I'd always had access to PC games starting with DOS and later Windows 95/98 and XP. I first saw Linux showcased in a tech magazine project but I didn't have any success trying to install it as a kid though. In 2011 I finally started building computers specifically for gaming, with Windows 7 through 8. During that time, Minecraft had me hosting stuff on an old PC with MineOS (Crux, later Turnkey) which made me familiar as I finally got around to exposing myself to a running Linux environment.

Around 2014 I'd finally had it with all of the antifeatures in Windows and the news of PRISM and other surveillance programs, and dove headfirst into Linux Mint on my main system. I played my first native Linux games in 2015, Deadcore and The Talos Principle (a fantastic choice for computer geeks btw) and eventually moved onto Debian. I haven't run any Windows or Windows games in roughly 8 or 9 years now.

Today I play exclusively open source (or leaked code/reverse engineered hehe) games.
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