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Linux Game Development


I enjoy developing games, and would enjoy it more if more people would take interest in developing games for Linux. Yeah sure, I know there are quite a few games for Linux, but most of them are Quake3 Arena clones... made with the Quake3 Arena engine. I few months back I launched a community site for Linux game devs and the response was horrible, in the matter of +/- 5 months time the site managed to get 10 registered members. And I did my bit to "market" it.

The point is - It doesn't look like people are taking any interest in this at all. I'm not a pro in Linux game development, but not even the experienced folks took a look at it to help add more content (is this some kind of dark art???). Currently I'm seriously considering to shut the site down, which I tried to get up and running to benefit the Linux community.

Sorry for the rant, but Linux needs more high quality games... The kind that'll get more people to switch over to Linux, and for many others like myself - stop dual-booting.


  • mfillpot
    mfillpot Posts: 2,177
    I have always been interested in learning about game development and so has my son. but I have not had the written resources to get very far. I will check out your site tonight to see what I can learn and potentially see if I can recommend anything that will help to attrack more potential devleopers.

    Thank you for posting here.
  • mfillpot
    mfillpot Posts: 2,177
    I would also like to recommend that you add Slackware to your list of distributions, the default install of Slackware has many development packages and only uses the original libraries and apps, so you start with the apps and libraries as the author intended. In addition some distributions (not Slackware) choose to modify apps and libraries to their own needs prior to compiling them, so you can also run into some compatibility issues because of those modifications.

    As a starting point for game development I would like to learn about developing a physics engine, but I do not see any information about it on your site. I found http://gpwiki.org/index.php/Game_Engines which lists game engines, but I could not find any good sites with info about a physics engine. If you could add a section in the site that lists recommended books for learning things like physic engine, game engine and 3d rendering that would be extremely helpful, and of course if you can also setup rating of submitted books and links it can help people to get started.
  • pjpdev
    pjpdev Posts: 11
    Thanks for the recommendations. Don't know why I forgot about Slackware, so it'll end up on the list.

    I'll also find some physics engines and add them to the site. "Recommended Books" sound like a good idea, I bet there are a bunch of good books going around.

    Currently I'm looking at a few Open Source MMORPG engines to do an article or two on... And prolly use one of 'em for my own little idea :P
  • mfillpot
    mfillpot Posts: 2,177
    I am enthusiatic about seeing the outcome of your project and learning more from you and your community. Thanks again for looking over my recommendations.
  • smalldoor
    A very good suggestion

    I have been to this study

    Thank you
  • Zanpaktou
    Zanpaktou Posts: 30
    The problem with game development on the whole is that the market is saturated with game development startups and corporations which develop for console first, then the PC market. Seeing how the games console market is so huge.
    Game developers are (Usually unless they are getting ripped off) Highly paid individuals because they are extremely skilled programmers. Because games are difficult things to program, they need to be.
    The problem comes from Microsoft. They ship the xbox 360 which you might have heard of and they also ship the directX api.
    Now the cross platform api is opengl and while unlike directX, it is not a full multimedia api, it is much more powerful and easier to develop using (Apparently.) DirectX does not run very well on Linux. It can be done but using wine and not very well.
    To develop games on the PC platform for Windows, the games are written using directX and the same is true for the xbox. Now Microsoft offers kick backs to game developers that use directX instead of opengl and over time game developers have accepted the directX api (Wrongly) To write their games.
    Because they have chosen directX and directX is not a cross-platform api (Which is by Microsoft's design to lock vendors into their software technology, just as they did with Internet Explorer) Major game releases are very rarely cross platform.


    With Android and iphone (iPad) OSes supporting opengl games, opengl is becoming popular again and we will see many developers start to get it right and popular retail games will come to Linux in the future because of it but it will be a bit of a wait.

    I would love to see google enter the games market, offer sponsorship to game developers and try to trounce Microsoft in that market using android. Googlebox, or Google playbox games console anyone?
    I will not be surprised if that happens. Their appengine would be a perfect platform for it if they relaxed and made sane it's licensing terms.

    I've always wanted to write a game, maybe an interactive puzzle game like monkey island, etc and if I get my skills a bit sharper using qt and ruby, I may well do. But it's just a thought right now.
    Game programming is hard.
  • m3xican
    m3xican Posts: 16
    there are few people buying Linux games, so there are few Linux games, so there are few people buying Linux games :)

    Jokes apart, the Linux market is pretty small and it doesn't seem to grow as the Mac one, furthermore most of game developers start their career learning DirectX, so things are not getting better in the last years.

    Hopefully, as Zanpaktou wrote, a growing importance in OpenGL as 3D API should help Linux games, but Linux distros need to work well to become more accessible to typical desktop user as well.

    It seems google is going to enter the game market :P


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