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Gaming on GNU/Linux platforms
- 1 Games
- 1.1 Open Source
- 1.2 Open Source with Proprietary Assets
- 1.3 Closed Source
- 2 Game Console Emulators
- 2.1 Multi System
- 2.2 Arcade
- 2.3 Atari Systems
- 2.4 Nintendo Systems
- 2.5 Sony Systems
- 2.6 Sega Systems
- 3 Launchers
- 4 Troubleshooting
- 5 Other links
This page is for good quality software on GNU/Linux platforms based on the contributions of /g/ users. Please be aware that most games do not have a native port for GNU/Linux and therefore are not officially supported. A lot of Windows games, however, can be played through Wine with no degradation in quality, such as with Furcadia. Other games, such as Strange Flesh has a degregation of quality, due to lack of proprietary fonts. Otherwise, it runs well. In the past few years Wine and Proton have come very far with over 75% of the top thousand Steam games including games like The Witcher 3 and DOOM (2016) running with near native performance, many of the games that don't work usually have issues due to anti-cheat. However, if your computer is powerful enough, and you are willing to do some reading, with effort, you can spin up a VM and use PCI passthrough to get these games working and replace the need to dual-boot. DosBox is available for GNU/Linux as well.
See also: Games
First Person Shooter
- Alien Arena runs on the CRX Gaming Engine. Alien Arena is a furious frag fest with arenas ranging from the small, to the massive. Dozens of maps, models, and various accessories have been created by community members to add on to the game experience. If socialization isn't your thing, you can play offline against bots.
- Assault Cube multiplayer game based on the CUBE engine. Its basically just a mix of quake and counter-strike. Contains 12 multiplayer game modes, including: Deathmatch, Survivor, Capture the Flag, Hunt the Flag, Keep the Flag, Pistol Frenzy, Last Swiss Standing & One-Shot One-Kill (plus team versions of these modes). Comes with 26 different maps and has a built in, in-game map editor to help players create their own maps and allows for co-operative editmode in realtime with others! Runs smoothly even on modest hardware.
- Cube 2 is a free multiplayer & singleplayer first person shooter, the successor of the Cube FPS. Many multiplayer gameplay modes, most in teamplay variants as well: deathmatch, instagib, efficiency, tactics, capture (domination/battlefield style), CTF (capture the flag), coop edit. Two singleplayer modes: DMSP (fight a monster invasion on any DM map), classic SP (progression driven SP like other games). 7 weapons tuned for maximum satisfaction: double barrelled shogun, rocket launcher, machine gun, rifle, grenade launcher, pistol, fist.
- Be aware that it contains some closed assets. If you want a fully free game, check out Inexor instead.
- OpenArena is Quake 3 but FOSS. Actually built of the original quake3 engine (id tech 3), which was released under the GPL in 2005.
- Red Eclipse
- Urban Terror
- Warsow is another arena fps. However this one was quite popular during its prime. It was announced by developers to be discontinued/abandoned in 2016
- Cocaine Diesel is a new fork of Warsow that is undergoing development as of 2019.
- Aleph One is a continuation of Bungie's Marathon Engine for the now-free Marathon games, supports the original trilogy plus many fan projects. Similar to halo but different (originally made by Bungie)
- Xonotic is an arena FPS with many game modes, maps, and weapons to choose from. There are official /v/ servers that are semi-popular (for a dead game that is).
- Lugaru is a good third-person fighting game. It has lots of cheaply made moments (like story and level transitions) but also features great fighting mechanics. If you enjoyed that you'd probably like Overgrowth, though it's proprietary and in early access after like 9 fucking years in the development.
- OpenTomb is a cross platform port of Tomb Raider 1-5, early in development.
- Super Tux Kart is the Emacs of video games. 2018 brings online multiplayer.
- Stunt Rally
- Armagetron Advanced
Real Time Strategy
- OpenRA is an open-source implementation of Command & Conquer: Red Alert
- Stepmania started as a Dance Dance Revolution clone, but has since become so much more. It has many options, modes, and even online play. There is a huge number of community contributed stepfiles available.
- Minetest is a cross-platform voxel game engine. It also has games, mods textures, etc., Through ContentDB.
- Oolite is a first person space game/simulator, based on and very similar to Elite. Right on, Commander!
Turn Based Strategy
- Battle for Wesnoth is a turn-based strategy game made by a cripple who likes guns.
- UFO: Alien Invasion
- Freeciv is a kind of turn-based game from the 90s.
Open Source with Proprietary Assets
First Person Shooter
- DXX Rebirth is a source port of the Descent and Descent 2 engines.
- ECWolf is a source port of the Wolfenstein 3D engine (also supports Super Noah's Ark 3D).
- ETLegacy is a fork of Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory which aims to update the game for modern systems and fix all of the bugs. Currently relies on the proprietary assets, but the free assets are already being developed.
- EDuke32 is a source port of the Duke Nukem 3D engine.
- GZDoom is a source port of the Doom engine. Supports all of the Doom games, Heretic, Hexen and other Doom-based games. Can be played without proprietary assets, see Freedoom.
- ioquake3 is an open source remake of the Quake3 engine.
- ROTT for Linux is a source port of the Rise of the Triad engine.
- Zandronum is basically GZDoom with focus on multiplayer.
- RuneLite is a highly customizable client for Old School Runescape.
Point and Click Adventures
- ScummVM is an engine for running many games such as Maniac Mansion, Leisure Suit Larry and King's Quest.
Role Playing Game
- OpenMW is an open source remake of the Morrowind engine.
- CorsixTH is a remake of Theme Hospital.
- OpenRCT2 is a remake of RollerCoaster Tycoon 2. Has lots of features from the original RCT plus their own, including multiplayer and some gamebreaking cheats. Works great despite being in alpha.
- Toribash is a very unique 3D fighting game with turn based gameplay. Switch joints and muscles between four states (extend, contract, relax, and hold) in order to attack your opponent. Hundreds of game modes/mods. Features online gameplay and skill tier ranking system. You can also play offline against the bot, but it's pretty easy once you get the hang of the game. Download the 4.7 beta with online play here. The last working Linux version was 3.5.
- Second Life is a classic MMORPG with a 3D interface that is glitchy on occasion. Be careful while playing it, though. You might run into furry RPers. Second Life is very famous for furries
First Person Shooter
- ROTC: Ethernet
- Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
- Team Fortress 2
- Dota 2
This is a list of /g/ featured paid GNU/Linux games. For a complete list of Steam games for GNU/Linux click here
For a complete list of DRM-free games from GOG for GNU/Linux click here
First Person Shooter
- Half-Life 2
- Left for Dead 2
- Portal 2
- Dungeons of Dredmore
- Faster Than Light
- Hack Slash Loot
- Rogue Legacy
- The Binding of Isaac
- Rust is an online multiplayer game where you must craft things in order to survive. Teaming up with other people is key to survival. Many players are very aggressive and will kill each other over resources. You'll focus your time on building necessary defenses to keep players away from your things as well as crafting guns, ammo, and whatever else you need. The lighting engine is also really good.
- Euro Truck Simulator 2
- Dirt rally
Game Console Emulators
- Retroarch (a frontend for libretro) will emulate nearly everything from one easy menu using one controller. Ports ("cores") for most well-regarded open source emulators to libretro exist.
- BizHawk - designed primarily for tool-assisted speedruns with a focus on accuracy, but also aims to be easy to use for casual gaming. Also supports (some) libretro cores.
- MAME (sdlmame) - supports hundreds of machines, many of which it is the only emulator for. Can emulate cash registers. Primary focus is arcade systems, with console compatibility a happy accident due to them often sharing hardware. Focuses on accuracy, compatibility varies wildly. See NonMAME and Emulation General wiki.
- qmc2 (frontend for sdlmame)
- BizHawk - 2600/7800/Jaguar/Lynx
- MAME - 2600/7800, 6800/68000-based arcades.
- Mednafen - Lynx
- Stella - 2600
- A7800 - 7800
- Hatari - ST
- Steem SSE - ST
- ARAnyM - ST
- Atari++ - 8bit
- atari800 - 8bit, 5200
- Reality Boy
- Termboy (terminal)
Game Boy Color
Game Boy Advance
- DuckStation - high compatibility, built in GUI. Supports MAMEs CHD format. Recommended.
- Mednafen - CLI based multi-system emulator, recommended. Also has excellent support for NEC PC Engine and Nintendo Virtual Boy.
- PCSX-ReARMed - fork of now inactive PCSX-R(eloaded) project with ARM optimisations. Github
- ePSXe - plugin based, closed source, seems to be no longer in development as of June 2023. Not recommended.
- PCSX2 (See PS2 emulators) also supports PS1 games. Compatibility list here.
- PCSX2 - first PS2 emulator, 98% of games marked as playable as of June 2023. Supports many USB peripherals and accessories for the original PS2.
- hpsx64 - experimental
Sega Master System
Sega Mega Drive
Sega Game Gear
Steam is a proprietary service for video games made by the people who didn't bring you Half Life 2: Episode 3 but did cocktease you with it at the end of Half Life: Alyx. They also develop their own open-source compatibility layer called Proton which is based on Wine, it works very well with an increasing number of windows games.
Installing Steam on GNU/Linux is pretty straight forward. Using Linux Mint 17.2 as an example:
- Open the Software Manager.
- Search for Steam.
- Install the steam-launcher package.
- Run the Steam Launcher from the Application Menu, under Games.
- Read/Accept the Steam Install Agreement.
- The launcher will download and install Steam. This is about 200mb.
- Login to your account/create one.
- In the games section of the store, use the controls on the right to Narrow by Operating System and select Linux / SteamPlay.
- Select the game, buy it if it's not free, and click Play Game.
- You'll see the size of the game download, hit Next.
- You'll have options to create shortcuts in the Application Menu and Desktop. Select whatever and hit Next.
- Hit Finish.
- Monitor the download by click the "Downloading" status bar at the bottom of the screen.
- If the download is slow, you can try changing the download server in View > Settings, Downloads, Download region. This will require a restart of Steam.
Once the game finishes downloading, the shortcuts will be available to launch the game.
Lutris is an open-source game launcher written in Python for GNU/Linux which allows users to install games from a variety of platforms (runners) using ready available optimized community scripts. It supports launching games from emulators such as Dolphin and RPCS3 and linking to your Steam, GOG and Humble Bundle libraries allowing you to install and play your games straight away. Launchers like Battle.net and Epic Games Launcher can be installed through Wine in Lutris too and games like Overwatch can be played.
If games run slowly/have a low framerate, make sure you're using the official drivers for your GPU.
- For nVidia GPUs, install the up-to-date drivers and then reboot. These drivers are often proprietary.
- For even newer nVidia drivers or ATI drivers, check Ubuntu's Steam Wiki Page.