HOWTO: Gaming and games on Linux

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Refalm
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HOWTO: Gaming and games on Linux

Post by Refalm »

1. Hardware
Choosing the right videocard is pretty important. The quality of drivers for videocards differ dramatically.

Here's a short comparison:
========
AMD Radeon [Nice]
Great non-free driver. Support for Vulkan is especially great.
Make sure you get the fglrx-experimental-X driver though, especially on a laptop.

NVIDIA GeForce [Good]
Decent non-free driver that gets updated regularly, everything that is supported on Windows and Mac OS X is in this driver.
However, if you're on a laptop, make sure you use nvidia-xrun, since Optimus support is poor.

Intel HD Graphics [Bwah]
Decent open source driver. However, this videocard is made for thin clients and netbooks, not so great for gaming.

Matrox Graphics [Bwah]
Decent non-free driver. 3D acceleration is supported, but it may be incompatible with a lot of games.
========

The best way to install the driver for your videocard is to look how to in your own distribution documentation.

Because installing non-free applications on Linux defeats the whole purpose of open source, the open source driver is installed. The open source driver works great with the desktop, but not with gaming, so obviously you want the non-free driver.

Some distributions like Ubuntu and Fedora have a point and click interface to install it, on others like Gentoo and Slackware, you need to recompile the kernel to include the driver. Use DuckDuckGo, or ask in the appropriate forum.

2. Linux native games
Now that you installed a non-free driver, you got to check out some games for Linux.

Check out Steam or Top 250 Steam games for Linux, GOG.com, or itch.io.
They offer a lot of commercial titles. You'll be surprised that games like Dying Light, Left 4 Dead 2, Life is Strange, Natural Selection 2, Serious Sam 3, etc. are Linux native.

3. Getting Proton and Wine
The best platform for PC gaming is Windows. But that doesn't mean that you'll have to run Windows. Just a small part of it, that's enough to run games and some applications.

In Steam, go to "Settings" -> "Steam Play". Then make sure "Enable Steam Play For Supported Titles" is on, then click "OK". Now you can play many Windows-only Steam games on Linux. Just restart Steam, and double click on a game to play as usual.

Also get Wine.
You can usually find it in your distribution's store application.

If you can't find Wine in the store application, go here:
https://wiki.winehq.org/Download

Find your distribution in the list, and there will be instructions on how to install it.

Wine allows you to just open Setup.exe or whatever and installing like you would in Windows.

4. Windows games
Hold on there! Before you start installling The Witcher 3, first look up if it actually works okay.
Steam games: https://www.protondb.com/
Non-Steam games: https://appdb.winehq.org/

Some games don't work right away, and you need to look on ProtonDB or AppDB first if there is anything you need to do to make it work.
Click on "Search for a game..." or "Browse app" and search for your game.

Here's an example of Racedriver GRID:
https://appdb.winehq.org/objectManager. ... &iId=18526

Without these instructions, you would have gotten shitty sound and lag.

5. Mounting ISO's
You may not believe this, but some people actually copy their legally bought DVD to an ISO file, and then virtually mount it, so it looks like they inserted the original DVD.
Those people are probably in dire need of shiny beer coasters.

If this is you, you can install CDEmu.

6. Ownage
Now go make some headshots :P
Last edited by Refalm on Wed Jul 22, 2020 4:17 pm, edited 23 times in total.

piratepenguin
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Post by piratepenguin »

Sound stuff.

However, I thought that a lot of Intel and AMD cards had decent free drivers. This has been my experience with all of my cards (good acceleration out of the box in Ubuntu), however my cards would be all aging.

Do you know how AMDs commitment to supporting a free driver is working?

Refalm
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Post by Refalm »

Intel indeed has an open source driver, so I edited the topic.

ATI has a non-free driver, and as far as I can tell, there are no plans to make them open source.

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