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Latest Comments by Ray54
The latest OpenRA test build supports more single-player missions and features AI improvements
7 January 2019 at 4:41 pm UTC

Very good news. I still like to occasionally play the single player levels from Tiberian Dawn and Red Alert 2. I did try the single player levels in OpenRA Tiberian Dawn some time ago, and although they were similar to the original game levels, I found them to be much harder. I also missed not having the actor based cut scenes between the games. For me the original cut scenes are so atmospheric of the middle 1990's gaming period. The OpenRA guys have done a wonderful job for multiplayer, but as I often play single player I also want to use the original versions under Wine. Under Wine I use the much more reliable ddraw.dll replacemenet file from CnCNet to avoid graphics lock-up after 10 mins. As EA opened sourced the earlier games, so they are free from CnCNet, but the others I play from my C&C First Decade CD. So I have ended up with both the OpenRA and original Westwood Studios versions on my gaming machines.

SC Controller, the driver and UI for the Steam Controller is being rewritten to be more portable
26 November 2018 at 4:57 pm UTC

Which computer language would I use to write such code really does not matter. I have written specialist USB handling code for Linux and Windows in C and C# respectively, and it was pretty hard to get right. However, I prefer to use languages like Java, Gnome's Vala, Go and Python where practical, and I really like the little Rust coding that I have done. However without knowing the problem area in real detail, I would say that probably the best language for the development is the one that Kozec, who has done it before, chooses. From Liam's text, I assume C for the real-time bit-twiddling and Python for the rest, which sounds sensible to me.

I am not sure when Linux 4.18 will be available with native Steam Controller support, but that must factor in Kozec's decisions.

System76 reveal the Thelio, their new custom-built Linux desktop with three versions
1 November 2018 at 8:18 pm UTC

Don't they look like HiFi loudspeakers, just stick a Wharfedale label on one and put it next to a record deck and you could hide it in plain sight.

I actually like the wood grain styling, but I would like to know more about how open the boot process is and if it allows you to stop or limit the 2 other operating systems, besides the one you want, that Intel and AMD architectures force on you.

The beautifully weird hidden object adventure game My Brother Rabbit is out, it's really sweet
24 September 2018 at 2:27 pm UTC Likes: 1

I have 33 of the Artifex Mundi Linux games and have always found them to be of good technical quality. They obviously do a really good QA test of their products, as other than the occasional American English names for objects (not British names), there are never any problems. This product must use a different engine to their standard HOG series engines, so I am very pleased that they are now using their great talents to do new styles of games. Definitely a buy for me.

Atari VCS RAM upgraded to 8GB and Atari confirm you can put a normal Linux distribution on it
15 July 2018 at 8:49 pm UTC Likes: 6

I think that everyone will have their doubts about whether this "Atari" can actually deliver their console, as it is a big challenge for a small company. There could be fatal slips anywhere along their path to market, we probably won't know if they have a real chance until they get to the pre-sales shipping to reviewers stage. I would like this "Atari" to succeed and to sell millions of their Linux consoles, but I know it is low probability. However, perhaps even if they don't succeed, it will blaze a trial for someone else to later succeed. So I really don't see the point of being negative about their attempt, I cant see how negative comments helps us as a Linux gaming community.

The striking hidden object adventure game 'My Brother Rabbit' to release later this year with Linux support
2 July 2018 at 6:04 pm UTC

I have 28 Artifex Mundi games mostly purchased in sales and bundles. Nearly all of them I have enjoyed playing on Linux and will play them again sometime. However, I do think that they need to produce new games based on a new engine, that supports different types of puzzles/mini-games. As Mrokrii says, the art is always excellent, but the re-use of the same old puzzles is getting rather stale. Hopefully when a functional demo of My Brother Rabbit comes out, we will not be disappointed.

Play It Now - Gunpoint
30 June 2018 at 5:49 pm UTC Likes: 2

Thank you scaine, this is just the type of game that I hoped you would include in your series. It is very unlikely that I would have found this game by accident. I usually don't have trouble with short games, as my exceptional playing skill usually means they last a long time Its now on my list to buy before the end of the steam sale.

OpenSAGE, an early WIP game engine for Command & Conquer: Generals adds Linux support
25 June 2018 at 10:46 am UTC Likes: 2

I still occasionally play C&C Generals using wine and my "C&C - The First Decade" disk in the drive. The highest 2 resolutions are 1152x864 and 1400x1050. I cannot get C&C Generals Zero Hour to work under wine, as it does not recognise my DVD drive. I use wine version 1.6 for all C&C games, as more recent versions crash after 10 mins of playing RA2.

I hope that OpenSage will play the single player campaigns, as I really love the cut-scenes on old C&C games. The other thing that I hope OpenSage will give, is simple asset transfers, as I don't trust a lot of the Windows no-CD hacks.

A small but nice update on Ashes of the Singularity: Escalation and Linux support
19 June 2018 at 11:21 pm UTC Likes: 4

I can see the argument of using Linux as the standard development environment, because most Linux tools and graphics are open source, and so are ported to every possible gaming platform. Particularly Vulkan, SDL2, language compilers and debuggers. Even with 3rd party proprietary tools and libraries, I imagine you will typically avoid lock-in if they are available under Linux.

I used to be a C++ developer in a large company, never on games, but we would always develop on Unix and port our applications to Windows or whatever after. This approach was to some extent done for games in the mid 1990's. I worked in Dallas Texas in the mid 1990s, and my American colleagues had friends at ID Software down the road, so we were given an unofficial Unix version of Doom around the time it was initially released. After working hours, we would often have 6 or more player games of Doom on our office network of SUN SparcStations (expensive Unix development workstations). I was told that the Unix version was there because ID developed the game on Unix, before porting it to DOS and Windows. So it would be ironic if some modern game development moved to Linux.

Game store itch is having a big summer sale
19 June 2018 at 10:25 pm UTC Likes: 3

PatolaYou know, I would really really like to support itch because I think it's THE BEST appstore with its monetization and free policies. But it's very difficult, and these sales clearly show why - I end up swallowing the DRM-infested versions of steam games because their prices are much cheaper (regional prices for Brazil) and their sales much much better. I'll list the case here, for all these games:

Our currency is called "Real". A dollar is currently worth 3.75 reals. A fair approximation of our cost of life is to consider that we earn 1 real for each 1 dollar an US citizen earns. So ideally, a game that costs US$ 20 should cost R$ 20 if the cost of life is considered.

Do not forget that steams sale are starting in less than 48 hours. We'll have a good comparison if the same games get sales pricing.

MidBoss: US$ 14.99 regular price, US$ 6.74 sales price. Regular price in Steam is R$ 27.99, about 7.45 dollars.
Rise To Ruins: US$ 9.99 regular price, US$ 4.99 sales price. Regular price in Steam is R$ 19.99, about 5.33 dollars.
The Signal from Tölva: US$ 19.99 regular price, US$ 9.99 sales price. Regular price in Steam is R$ 36.99, about 9.86 dollars. Cheaper than 50% off on itch!
Haque: US$ 14.99 regular price, US$ 7.49 sales price. Regular price in Steam is R$ 28.99, about 7.73 dollars.
A Hole New World: US$ 9.99 regular price, US$ 4.99 sales price. Regular price in Steam is R$ 19.99, about 5.33 dollars.
All Walls Must Fall: US$ 9.99 regular price, US$ 6.99 sales price. Regular price in Steam is R$ 20.69, about 5.52 dollars.
Mewnbase: not on Steam, so I can't compare.

Maybe you (the reader of this post) don't agree with regional prices - but it is the strategy that works in "developing" countries. Otherwise people have too much of an incentive to pirate copies and don't pay for the games at all. It is very much like eternal sales for some unpriviledged people. And I realize that developers might not sympathize with the pressure to discriminate some buyers with some large discounts, and that this can also be exploited by people who just want to pay less. But this really really really hurts adoption of game distributors / shops here. I wish I could ask itch for fixing that, but I think they are smart enough to recognize the existence of regional prices.

Someone once said that living in a "developing" country like Brazil is live playing life on "hard difficulty". And it seems itch is not very fond of dialing down on this difficulty even a little bit.
I think regional prices are very necessary and a good thing for downloaded games. Extra sales of downloaded games have almost a zero marginal cost to the developer/distributer, so selling at any reasonable price is good as long as there are limited gray imports into other markets. I suspect that something that has a high cost of content like gold bars would be the same price if made in Brazil or the US.

However, it is strange how and when regional pricing is used. I live in the UK, where I guess our average salaries are somewhere around 50% of US average salaries, but we normally pay full US dollar prices for downloaded games. This may be because there would be a huge gray market if UK prices were half the US prices. The same is true with music CDs. I recently imported by post a new music CD by a Scottish band from a Florida outlet, as it was cheaper than buying it from a UK outlet.

I have looked at Itch, but have never found much that matches my interests. I do buy from Humble and GoG, but really love Steam sales.

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