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kuhla

Valves Proton for Steam and gaming on Linux

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I vaguely remember seeing this talked about in a few places but didn't look into it. I just saw it mentioned again the other day so I looked a little into it. I guess gaming on Linux has come a ways. Most definitely not even close to parity to Windows yet but now there are even recent titles available especially with the use of Proton which is apparently a bit of software that Valve put together.

  1. https://www.protondb.com/
  2. https://store.steampowered.com/curator/33483305-Proton-Compatible/
  3. https://github.com/ValveSoftware/Proton

 

 

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I'm hoping more games will begin moving towards vulkan renderer, in general I've seen that vulkan runs well on every platform.  By contrast, DX12 is absolute dogshit, nearly every game that offers a DX12 option sees a reduction in performance - I know DX12 is needed for certain features, especially ray tracing but it's still ugly to see a ~10% drop in performance using that renderer when better alternatives exist. 
I know there are plenty of jokes about valve not making games, but I've seen them making large investments in both VR/AR and Linux.  While these investments aren't particularly flashy there's absolutely a big advantage towards opening platforms/software across OS.  This combined with Window's own growing support of certain Linux features/systems might end up seeing a more open set of platforms. 

Offtopic: As windows moves more towards SaaS there's really no reason why they shouldn't offer their office suite or other tools on Linux, I know the average Linux user probably isn't a big Microsoft fan, but it's hard to ignore that the office applications are the gold standard (especially excel).  I feel like the current CEO of Microsoft has a much more future looking view of the company and wouldn't particularly fight to keep such a walled garden. 

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"Valve proposes game-friendly changes to the Linux kernel"
https://www.zdnet.com/article/valve-proposes-game-friendly-changes-to-the-linux-kernel/ 

Quote

 

....

While this helped a lot, there were still performance problems. So, in the release notes for the latest edition of Proton, Valve announced it was proposing changes to the Linux kernel itself to make Linux more game-friendly. 

This includes an experimental replacement for esync, which improves performance with multithreaded games or any application that pushes the CPU. 
....

 

They are serious about this.

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From all indications they're dropping serious money and developer resources to make this happen.  I expect in the next 2-3 years we'll see linux gaming shift from being a joke (it's less of a joke today than it was even 1 year ago) to being a legitimate option. 

I also expect that this also is a huge advantage for emerging markets, this might be valve simply seeing another major market opportunity to expand into. 

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